Remarkable experiences. extraordinary value.

Journey to Tuscany and the Greek Isles

18 or 31 Nights featuring Florence, Siena, the Tuscan countryside, Mykonos and Santorini

Includes: International Airfare, Hotel, Tours, Transfers and More!

Land Program: Includes Guided Tours plus Some Free Time

Start Date: Oct 8, 2024
(Sailing Oct 14, 2024)

About This Journey

This is not a whirlwind tour of Italy. There are no lines, no crowds and no tourist traps. This is the real Italy; the Italy you’ve always wanted to go back to. You’ll take a stroll through a medieval town and chat with the local butcher, learn how to make homemade pasta and spend an afternoon meandering through a family-run vineyard (as you sip their prized wine, of course). You’ll walk in the footsteps of Under the Tuscan Sun writer Frances Mayes, as well as countless Italian artists who have visited these historic towns and picturesque landscapes for inspiration over the centuries. You will not be rushed nor bored; you will simply be delighted as our hosts explain their local customs and welcome you to join their table. After six nights of ‘wining and dining’ in the Tuscan countryside, you will be transferred to the port in Civitavecchia to embark the New Celebrity Ascent. You’ll sail to the picturesque islands of Mykonos, Rhodes, Santorini, Sicily and more, with the option of continuing your cruise all the way to Fort Lauderdale and skipping the long-haul flight back home! Spend your days at sea recounting your memories of authentic Italian cuisine, delicious wines and quaint towns of the Italian Countryside.

31 Night Journey with Optional Cruise Extension Also Available–See Itinerary Option 2 for Details!

Visits: Please add the Celebrity Ascent, 37277, Florence, Tuscany, Naples, Katakolon, Athens, Mykonos, Rhodes, Ephesus, Santorini, Sicily, Barcelona, Alicante, Gibraltar, Ponta Delgada, King’s Wharf, Fort Lauderdale

Journey to Tuscany and the Greek Isles

Itinerary

Start Date: October 8, 2024
(Sailing October 14, 2024)

Day Port Arrival Departure
1 Arrive Florence – Transfer to Hotel and Welcome Dinner
2 Florence – Tour to Olive Oil Farm with Tasting
3 Florence – Siena and Winery Visit
4 Florence to Tuscany – Tour to Volterra and Certaldo
5 Tuscany – Tour to Greve and Cooking class
6 Tuscany – Under the Tuscan Sun Tour
7 Tuscany to Civitavecchia – Transfer to Port for Embarkation 5:00 PM
8 Naples (Capri), Italy 7:00 AM 6:00 PM
9 At Sea
10 Katakolon, Greece 7:00 AM 4:00 PM
11 Athens (Piraeus), Greece 8:00 AM 7:00 PM
12 Mykonos, Greece 8:00 AM 6:00 PM
13 Rhodes, Greece 8:00 AM 6:00 PM
14 Ephesus (Kusadasi), Turkey 8:00 AM 6:00 PM
15 Santorini, Greece 8:00 AM 10:00 PM
16 At Sea
17 Sicily (Palermo), Italy 8:00 AM 6:00 PM
18 At Sea
19 Barcelona, Spain – Disembarkation and Transfer to Airport 5:00 AM

Interested in the land program without the cruise? Call us for a quote.

Land Program

Day 1 – Arrive Florence

Upon arrival at the airport you will be transferred to the hotel. After checking in, you’ll have time to get settled in before joining your fellow travelers for a welcome dinner. (D)

Note: if you wish to spend more time in Florence, ask your Personal Vacation Manager about the optional hotel extension.

Day 2 – Florence

Olive Oil

Olive Oil

After breakfast, we’ll head out of the city and into the countryside to visit a local farm that specializes in olive oil production. In Italy, olive oil is not only a cooking ingredient, but also a cultural symbol steeped in tradition. From the olive branch representing a peace offering to olive groves being passed down from generation to generation, the olive tree provides traditions that date back to Ancient Rome. During our visit we will learn about the production process and then sample some of the estate’s prized oils. A snack will be provided during the tasting. We will then return to Florence, where you will enjoy some free time in the “Jewel of the Renaissance”. Your guide can suggest some local restaurants near the hotel for dinner. (B, S)

Note: although you will enjoy some free time this evening, if you are interested in exploring the museums of Florence, we recommend extending your hotel stay to allow for sufficient time for museum and art gallery visits.

Day 3 – Florence

Piazza Del Campo, Siena

Piazza Del Campo, Siena

Today we will explore the city of Siena, a prominent city within the Tuscan region with a centuries-old rivalry with Florence. Enjoy a guided tour of the medieval city center, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Admire the beautiful Palazzo del Campo, famous for its semiannual horse race and the Siena Cathedral, a masterpiece of Italian Romanesque and Gothic architecture. We will then drive to a region blessed with lush vineyards, olive groves and cypress trees to visit a local winery for lunch. We will enjoy a delicious menu of local products, then return to the hotel for an evening at your leisure. (B, L)

Day 4 – Florence to the Tuscan Countryside

St. Patrick’s Cathedral

Pottery Workshop

Check out of the hotel and say goodbye to Florence; today we will head further south into the heart of the Tuscan countryside. Start the day with a visit to the hilltop town of Volterra, a former Etruscan settlement with a splendid view of the surrounding landscape. Besides the views, the city is also renowned for its alabaster, a beautiful pale stone that is soft enough to carve. Your guide will provide a tour of the most important sights of the town, then take you to visit an artist at his alabaster workshop. You will then enjoy some free time in the village to stroll along the medieval alleyways and have lunch on your own.

In the afternoon, you will visit one of Tuscany’s secret gems: Certaldo. This was the hometown of Giovanni Boccaccio, author of the “Decameron” and one of first Renaissance humanists. We will take a walk through the historic town and enjoy the views of the surrounding hills below. The tour ends with a visit to a ceramic painting shop, where you will see an artisan at work.

Upon arrival at our hotel, you will have time to check in and get settled before rejoining the group for dinner. The Palazzo San Lorenzo, an elegant XVII-century palace, is located in the historic center of Colle Val d’Elsa, a quaint medieval village in the heart of the Tuscan countryside. (B, D)

Day 5 – Tuscan Countryside

Cooking Class, Chianti Valley

Cooking Class, Chianti Valley

Your cooking lesson takes place at a charming location in the middle of the Tuscan vineyards. You will be greeted with a welcome drink in the garden before entering the facility and exploring. For the first cooking activity, you will concentrate on the main specialty of Italian and Tuscan cuisine—homemade pasta. The chef and staff will provide the directions and ingredients needed and then give you the opportunity to try your hand at it. They will then teach you how to prepare a few other traditional dishes, using the precious Tuscan extra virgin olive oil and other local ingredients. The course will conclude with a tasting of Tuscan wines to pair with the dishes, which the group will all enjoy, served along with some additional appetizers like bruschetta.

Chianti Vineyards, Tuscany

Chianti Vineyards, Tuscany

With a full belly and a tipsy smile, you will board the bus and drive through the beautiful hills of the Chianti Valley towards Greve. This valley is considered by many to be the heart of the Tuscan countryside and is renowned for its famous wines. In the charming village of Greve, you will take a stroll and then visit a historical and traditional butcher’s shop to taste their homemade products. Return to your hotel and enjoy the evening at leisure. (B, L)

Day 6 – Tuscan Countryside

Montelpulciano, Tuscany

Montepulciano, Tuscany

Today we will visit lively Cortona, which is characterized by its well-preserved medieval character. Steep, cobblestone paths lead through the narrow alleyways in the historic center, then open up onto the large squares of ‘Piazza della Repubblica’ and ‘Piazza Signorelli’, where the town comes to life. Shops offer gastronomic delicacies and handicrafts, while street cafés invite one to linger. Many scenes of the famous movie “Under the Tuscan Sun” were shot here, as well as the villa of the book’s writer, Frances Mayes.

We will then visit a winery in the region of Montepulciano, another town in the heart of Tuscany where some scenes of the movie were shot. This area is situated on a stone mountain and the local vintners carved out their wine cellars in the cool stone. Their ‘noble’ wine was already known in the 8th century as the ‘Vino dei Signori’ – wine of the nobility. We will end the day’s excursion at one of these famous local wineries to enjoy a sensorial wine experience. You will visit the vineyards and cellars and then taste the wine directly from the barrels as we toast to an unforgettable Journey! Lunch will be served in the estate’s local farmhouse before returning to the hotel for an evening at leisure. (B, L)

Day 7 – Embarkation

After breakfast, check out of the hotel and transfer to the port, where you will board the Celebrity Ascent for a 12-night cruise to the Greek Isles. (B)

Day 8-18 – Cruising onboard the Celebrity Ascent (see below for cruise highlights)

 

Day 19 – Barcelona Disembarkation

Enjoy breakfast onboard, then disembark the Celebrity Ascent and transfer to the airport for your return flight home. Optional 2-night Barcelona hotel stay available, see “special offers” section for details.

For meals not included in your land programs, all hotels chosen include a restaurant on property where you may relax and enjoy a meal. In addition, your guide is available to make suggestions on nearby dining, shopping or sightseeing.

Port Highlights

Naples, Italy

Naples, Italy

Naples, Italy: Naples is a large port city located in southwest Italy and is the capital of Italy’s Campania region. A Naples cruise port of call is an excellent way to visit Italy’s third largest destination and experience everything this famous city is known for, including pizza, history and it’s close proximity to several of Italy’s most famous places.

Olympia (Katakolon), Greece

Olympia (Katakolon), Greece

Olympia (Katakolon), Greece: No Greek Islands cruise is complete without going a little off-the-beaten path to the tiny fishing village of Katakolon in the region of Elis. When you arrive at the Katakolon cruise port, you’ll be met by views of the bluer than blue Ionian Sea, romantic Greek vistas and a beachy paradise. You can venture on to Olympia, where the first ever Olympic Games were held to honor the Greek gods, or stop in at the Archaeological Museum of Olympia for a closer look at ancient Greek art and history.

Athens (Piraeus), Greece

Athens (Piraeus), Greece

Athens (Piraeus), Greece:As the capital of Greece and one of Europe’s most bustling cities, Athens is powered by 5,000 years of history. At night, the city of Athens glows from afar, light reflecting off the ancient ruins. Today, travelers flock from around the world to experience its history while on cruises from Athens. After all, the art, theatre, architecture and philosophy of Athens had ripple effects through the fabric of entire civilizations.

Mykonos, Greece

Mykonos, Greece

Mykonos, Greece: Mykonos (also known as Hora) is perhaps the most known and famous of the Greek isles and public fascination with the island has seen a massive uptick in recent years. The secret’s out—Mykonos is sophisticated and glossy, the younger sibling of Athens, where bright white buildings pop against seriously blue waters and bougainvillea blooms unrestricted, Mykonos cruises revel in incredible nightlife, alluring white sand beaches and a stay-up-all-night spirit.

Rhodes, Greece

Rhodes, Greece

Rhodes, Greece: Discover the island’s long, sandy beaches, vibrant culture and thousands of years of history that unfold as you explore. Experience winding Byzantine streets in Old Town. See the magnificent palaces built by the medieval Knights of St. John. Venture further afield to beautiful Lindos, a whitewashed hill town dominated by a dramatic acropolis and an ancient temple.

Ephesus (Kusadasi), Turkey

Ephesus (Kusadasi), Turkey

Ephesus (Kusadasi), Turkey: We may be more familiar with destinations like Santorini and Mykonos, but cruises to Ephesus, Turkey and the port town of Kusadasi will give you a look at thousands of years of history. When your Kusadasi cruise ship docks in port, you’re perfectly positioned to head further inland to the ruins of Ephesus, where you’ll discover an off-the-beaten-path approach to Turkey.

Santorini, Greece

Santorini, Greece

Santorini, Greece: The port was created when the island’s volcano erupted in 1650 BC. The port is located at the base of Fira, the capital city. When your Santorini cruise docks in Fira, you’ll take a small boat to the shoreline and then, in picturesque Greek fashion, make your way to the top of the island by either cable car, donkey or on foot.

Sicily (Palermo), Italy

Sicily (Palermo), Italy

Sicily (Palermo), Italy: Sicily is one of Italy’s most romantic destinations. It evokes summertime sun, gorgeous piazzas and the clinking of glasses in celebration. Palermo itself was declared the Italian Capital of Culture in 2018, bringing new life and excitement to the region. On a Palermo cruise, you’ll tour both city and sea, whether you’re strolling around the Foro Italico or staring up at the architectural marvels of the Piazza Vigliena. You’ll take a dip in the Adriatic Sea at Mondello Beach and admire the gardens of the 9th century Norman Palace up close.

Journey to Tuscany and the Greek Isles

Included Features

  • International airfare, transfers and baggage handling
  • 6-night pre-cruise land program in Italy
    • Florence, Italy: 3-night hotel stay
      • Welcome dinner
      • Half-day tour to olive oil farm
      • Full-day tour to Siena and a local winery
    • Tuscany, Italy: 3-night hotel stay
      • Full-day tour to Volterra and Certaldo, including artist demonstrations
      • Tour to Chianti Valley and Greve with cooking class
      • Full-day Under the Tuscan Sun tour to Cortona, including winery visit
  • Tour Leader throughout pre-cruise land program and Local Tour Hosts during included tours
  • Most meals while on tour (see itinerary highlights) and all meals while onboard
  • 12-night sailing aboard the Celebrity Ascent
    • 10% off shore excursions (see “special offers”)
    • Drinks, Wi-Fi and Tips are All Included on Celebrity Cruises in most cases
    • Ask about extending your cruise! Sail on a back-to-back cruise and add 13 nights, visiting ports like Alicante, Gibraltar, the Azores and Bermuda before disembarking in Fort Lauderdale. Talk to a Personal Vacation Manager for details about this cruise extension option.
  • Special Offer for Journeys on Celebrity Cruises—Memorial Day Sale Ends 5/21!
    • Sail with up to $1,700 Onboard Credit and a $400 Visa Gift Card with Exclusive Tips on 2024 Sailings + Drinks and Wi-Fi—All Included. Learn More ➤

Journey to Tuscany and the Greek Isles

What to Expect on Your Trip

Pacing

Pacing 4 Out of 5

 

4 out of 5 – Land Program Includes Guided Tours plus Some Free Time

The overall pace is active, as we have included guided tours to most major attractions in the area. Most days will include a full-day or half-day tour, with some free time mixed in as well. Guests should be prepared to walk a couple miles per day while on full-day tours. Breakfast is always included at the hotel. Some additional meals may be included, while other meals may be at your leisure. All hotels will have a restaurant on property where you may dine. If you wish to go out, your guide is available to make suggestions for nearby dining.

During the cruise you will have a mix of relaxing days at sea and exciting days on land to explore the port cities. You may choose from optional shore excursions, which will allow for cultural immersion, exotic meals and numerous activities.

Physical Activity

The land portion of the trip should be considered active and includes a considerable amount of walking. Small towns and villages in Tuscany often do not have coach drop-off points in the center of town, so a short walk is required to get from the coach to the center of the village. Enrichment Journeys will do everything in our power to ensure comfort through our third-party providers, including air-conditioned buses and comfortable accommodations where applicable. However, some areas cannot be accessed by coach, so our drivers will get you as close to sites as is legally allowed. Sensible, rubber-soled walking shoes are strongly recommended. Historical sites often do not have elevators, escalators, or ramps due to the age of the building/structure. Steps can be steep and uneven. Based on crowds and traffic, order of visits may be changed.

Wheelchair access at many sites is limited to extremely limited. A fold-up wheelchair may be able to be stored on the bus but requires prior arrangements. Guests must be able to transfer from their chair to the transportation. Guides/drivers are not allowed to lift or push wheelchairs, so guests requiring physical assistance must travel with a companion who can assist. Motorized wheelchairs and scooters cannot be accommodated on this group program.

For the cruise portion of the trip, passengers will board and leave the ship up stairways and gangways and you may have to walk a moderate distance to transfer to train, bus and car stations. Time spent on the road and traveling can be long, so you will need to be prepared for stretches of down time in between destinations.

Cultural Focus

The focus of this Enrichment Journey is local culture and gastronomic traditions of Tuscany. You will encounter dishes and ingredients typical to the region that you may not have encountered before and you will be introduced to local artistry of the region. You will visit local family run establishments where traditional methods are kept and passed down from generation to generation on how to butcher, preserve and prepare certain dishes. Enrichment Journeys encourages an open mind when in unique situations and meeting people abroad. Sometimes the attractions, beaches and cities themselves can be crowded, especially while on the cruise.

Unique Factors

If you have special needs or physical limitations, you will need to check in with your Personal Vacation Manager before booking the trip. The temperature can vary between day and night, so pack accordingly with items that can be layered. Some guests may wish to have a light sweater or windbreaker with them as temperatures can vary between the hills and valleys during your travel.

Transportation

While on tour:

Florence to Tuscany: 1-hour coach transfer

Tuscany to Civitavecchia: 3-hour coach transfer

Please note that these times are approximate and only reflect the transportation time. Our trip may be longer due to stops for sightseeing along the way.

International Airfare:

Included international airfare is from select airports only. To inquire about a different airport, please contact your Personal Vacation Manager.

Enrichment Journeys is committed to providing remarkable experiences at extraordinary value. As a result, airlines and routes are selected to maximize that value and may involve multiple stops and extended layovers versus non-stop or direct flights. Passengers wishing to utilize specific carriers, direct/non-stop flights, Business Class upgrades, or to extend their time in any of our beginning or ending destination cities may do so by contacting Enrichment Journeys and inquiring about the Custom Airfare Program. There is a $100 per person charge for this service, however this charge will be applied toward any flights or upgrades you choose to purchase. The $100 charge must be paid prior to receiving a custom air quote.

Journey to Tuscany and the Greek Isles

Ask about receiving 10% off all shore excursions from Shore Excursions Group!

Special Offer for Journeys on Celebrity Cruises—Memorial Day Sale Ends 5/31!

Sail with up to $1,700 Onboard Credit and a $400 Visa Gift Card Exclusively from Us.

Drinks & Wi-Fi are All Included on Celebrity Cruises. 2024 departures also receive Exclusive Tips from Enrichment Journeys!

 

All guests must choose the same package type. View Celebrity Terms and Conditions. Offer expires May 31, 2024 or when sold out.

Journey to Tuscany and the Greek Isles

Extend Your Cruise by 13 Nights! Visit the ports of Alicante, Gibraltar, the Azores and Bermuda on a transatlantic crossing before disembarking in Fort Lauderdale. Speak to a Personal Vacation Manager for details. View the Itinerary Option 2 under the Itinerary Section.

2-night Florence Extension (pre)

Although the Enrichment Journey includes a hotel stay in Florence, the itinerary does not include much free time in the city. With this optional extension, you will arrive in Florence 2 days early, giving you time to explore Florence on your own before the start of the Enrichment Journey program. Note: tours are not included. Price of $435 per person includes:

  • 2-night hotel accommodations in Florence with daily breakfast
  • Private transfer from airport to hotel

2-night Barcelona Extension (post)

Although everyone on the Enrichment Journey will embark and disembark the ship in Barcelona, the itinerary does not include any time in the city. With this optional extension you will stay for 2 nights after your cruise, giving you time to explore Barcelona on your own before flying home. Note: tours are not included. Price of $495 per person (based on double occupancy) includes:

  • 2-night hotel accommodations in Barcelona with daily breakfast
  • Private transfer from ship to hotel and hotel to airport

Journey to Tuscany and the Greek Isles

Dates & Prices

Itinerary Option 1 (18 Nights)

10/8/2024 Retail Value EJ Price Savings Per Person Single Rates
Obstructed – Infinite Veranda – Partial View (E3) $12,265 $9,199 $3,066 CALL FOR DETAILS
Infinite Veranda (E2) $12,399 $9,299 $3,100 CALL FOR DETAILS
Concierge Class (C2) $12,799 $9,599 $3,200 CALL FOR DETAILS
Aqua Class (A2) $13,732 $10,299 $3,433 CALL FOR DETAILS
Suite CALL TODAY TO REQUEST A QUOTE

Itinerary Option 2 (31 Nights)

10/8/2024 Retail Value EJ Price Savings Per Person Single Rates
Infinite Veranda – Partial View (E3) $15,065 $11,299 $3,766 CALL FOR DETAILS
Infinite Veranda (E2) $15,199 $11,399 $3,800 CALL FOR DETAILS
Concierge Class (C2) $15,865 $11,899 $3,966 CALL FOR DETAILS
Suite CALL TODAY TO REQUEST A QUOTE

Prices are in USD and are based on double occupancy.

Interested in the land program without the cruise? Call us for a quote.

Air Add-Ons
City Add-On City Add-On City Add-On
Atlanta $350 Houston Intercontinental $400 Philadelphia $200
Boston $300 John F. Kennedy $0 Phoenix $450
Chicago $400 Los Angeles $400 San Diego $450
Dallas-Ft. Worth $300 Orlando $300 Seattle $450
Toronto $250 Miami $300 San Francisco $450
Washington – Dulles $400
– Business Class Air Available on Request
– Additional Gateways Available on Request
– Air Add-On Rates are only Valid for Itinerary 1 of this Journey. If interested in Itinerary 2 Air Add-On Rates, please call us for a quote.
-Air Add-On Rates are subject to change without notice. While we try to include the most common airports by default, we have many clients coming from different parts of the country. If you desire air from an unlisted airport, you must first reserve your Enrichment Journey with one of the listed airports as your default gateway and then ask, or have your Travel Agent ask, Enrichment Journeys to provide a quote for your preferred gateway.

All prices on our website and e-Journey Travel Guide are subject to change without notice. While we make every effort to provide you the most accurate and up-to-date information, occasionally, a trip or pricing category may be misprinted or unavailable at the time of booking. In the event of an incorrect price due to typographical, photographic, or technical error, or error in pricing information received from our suppliers, we retain the right to correct the price and to refuse or cancel any bookings placed at the incorrect price. In addition, all offers, prices, and conditions of sale may be subject to change without notice including tours, included features, highlights, minimum or maximum stays, itinerary, times in port, and/or other conditions/restrictions.

Journey to Tuscany and the Greek Isles

The following hotel list is preliminary and subject to change. Although we contract for hotels a year or more in advance, unforeseen circumstances do occasionally require a change of hotel. Should it be necessary to change a hotel, one of equal quality or value will be substituted and you will receive confirmed hotel information with your final itinerary.

Accommodations

Grand Hotel Baglioni

Piazza dell’Unità Italiana, 6, 50123 Firenze, Italia

Telephone: +39 055 23580

Email: infodesk@hotelbaglioni.it

The Grand Hotel Baglioni, located in the heart of Florence, has been synonymous with hospitality and quality for over 100 years. It is housed in a magnificent 19th-century building, in which past and present coexist in perfect harmony, bearer of the values inherent to Florentine tradition.

The four-star hotel offers 192 guest rooms, equipped with all the comforts and facilities of a high-standard hotel and is home to a renowned Conference Centre, consisting of nine conference rooms accommodating up to 400 people. On the fifth floor, you can discover the beauty of the splendid B-Roof panoramic restaurant from which you can admire the skyline of Florence, taking in the whole city with a single glance.

At the Baglioni Hotel, every event can become extraordinary.

 

Palazzo San Lorenzo Hotel & Spa

Via Gracco del Secco, 113 – 53034 Colle di Val D’Elsa – Italy

Telephone: +39 0577 923675

E-Mail: info@palazzosanlorenzo.it

Palazzo San Lorenzo is a 4-star hotel of the Ross Hotels Group hotel chain in Colle Val d’Elsa, a beautiful Tuscan town better known as the “City of Crystal”. Restored from a hospital built in 1635, the hotel offers a wide range of accommodations: rooms, suites and spacious apartments. Discover the benefits offered by SPA San Lorenzo including a spa area and a wellness center with sauna, solarium, Turkish bath, sensory showers, heated pool and whirlpool, massage area and wellness treatments. The restaurant Sopra Le Mur offers the best traditional Tuscan cuisine along with Caffè San Lorenzo, a wine bar where you can enjoy the best national and international wines.

Palazzo San Lorenzo is centrally located, making it easy to visit numerous famous small towns and villages, like nearby San Gimignano and Monteriggioni, as well as larger cities in the area, such as Siena, Florence and Pisa. The hotel staff is always at your complete disposal for any requests or information.

Celebrity Ascent

Cruise Line: Celebrity

Since its inception in 1989, Celebrity has held true to its original commitment of taking the very best aspects of classic, elegant cruising and updating them to reflect current lifestyles. In 1997, they merged with Royal Caribbean International to form Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. What sets Celebrity apart from other vacation choices today is the cruise line’s passionate dedication to providing guests with a cruise experience that embodies modern luxury. This has become the definition of Celebrity Cruises and has set the worldwide standard for today’s expression of what first made cruising famous—high quality, superior design, spacious accommodations, grand style, attentive service and exceptional cuisine. Celebrity Cruises’ iconic “X” is the mark of contemporary spaces that are at once coolly sophisticated and warmly inviting. Where the culinary experience is influenced by global cuisines and designed by their Michelin-starred chef. Where their staff provides seamless and intuitive service that’s both personal and unobtrusive. Where everything is designed to provide an unparalleled Relaxed Luxurysm resort at sea experience. Celebrity’s 15 award-winning ships offer unique experiences in more than 300 destinations on all seven continents.

Ship: Celebrity Ascent

Enjoy more luxury and more space on Celebrity AsentSM the newest Edge Class Ship debuting in the islands. There’s no better place for a ship designed to connect you more closely than ever to the sea and all the sun-soaked places on the horizon.

On its Eastern Caribbean itineraries, you can explore the cobblestone streets of Old San Juan in search of authentic local flavors, join an excursion to The Baths of Virgin Gorda from nearby Tortola and soak up the lush mountain views on the St. Kitts Scenic Railway. Journey to the Western Caribbean and get up close and personal with dolphins in Nassau, hit the shops or visit Maya ruins in Cozumel and lounge away the day on Grand Cayman’s famous Seven Mile Beach.

With more luxury to love, Celebrity Ascent extends your island bliss right on board. The ship’s outward-facing design and expanded outdoor spaces are perfect for enjoying the ever-changing views and balmy tropical breezes. Celebrity Ascent has everything that’s made the Edge Series ships stand apart from anything else at sea—from the cantilevered Magic Carpet soaring above the ocean to the asymmetrical pool area with martini- shaped hot tubs—plus even more exciting experiences to be announced soon.

Journey to Tuscany and the Greek Isles

Before You Go

Money Matters

How you handle your currency and financials while on the trip is up to you. Some people prefer to exchange all their money in advance, while others will rely solely on credit cards. Consider calling your bank ahead of time to make them aware of your international travel, especially when using cards or withdrawing money.

ATM Machines

These are often readily available, especially in major cities. Some will charge fees on top of what your hometown bank may charge for using ATMs abroad. Look for well-marked machines that have the Visa or MasterCard symbols.

Foreign Banks

Currency can be exchanged at most banks, if needed. Ask a local host or tour manager if there is a nearby bank that is open.

Credit Cards

During your trip, you’ll find that most major credit cards are accepted. Call your specific card issuer ahead of time to find out its limitations and benefits overseas.

Incidentals

Do be aware that some additional charges for mini-bars, laundry and room service will not be included in the tour package. Plan accordingly for these extra charges.

Packing Guidelines

Pack as simply as possible for easy transfers and customs screenings. Check with your domestic and international carriers regarding baggage guidelines, allowances and check for additional fees. All bags will be screened before boarding flights and the cruise ship.

What to pack

Basics and layers are key to a comfortable Journey. Be sure to check the weather in the destinations you will visit and pack accordingly. There are always unpredictable variables as well, so make sure you have one sturdy jacket and an outfit for a formal occasion too, just in case.

Here are a few key items to take on your trip:

  • Raincoat/poncho
  • Hooded jacket/fleece pullover
  • Pants with pockets
  • Skirt with pockets
  • Hat with visor & sunscreen/bug spray
  • Warm socks
  • Sturdy sandals
  • Practical shoes for walking/easy hiking
  • Extra pair of prescription sunglasses and/or glasses (if needed)
  • Camera(s)

Have back-ups for everything to avoid disappointment. Charge batteries in advance and bring extra film or digital memory cards. If bringing a high-end camera, consider investing in insurance to protect your asset.

Luggage Screening Process

To pass through screening, have liquids either in small containers and bagged, or in checked luggage. All valuables necessary for the trip should be on your person at all times, if possible. This includes medications and documentation. We recommend one main bag and a carry-on, per airline guidelines for weight and size.

Labeling

Have all your bags labeled with your name and address clearly marked. Add something to you luggage that is recognizable in the event your bags are misplaced. You may also consider marking your bags with “Enrichment Journeys” for efficiency.

Carry-on items

In many countries, including the US, large liquid containers are not allowed in carry-ons. On the way back into The States, food or agriculture items are prohibited. If you have questions about a certain item, visit www.tsa.gov for a list of items that cannot be packed.

Airport transfers

Airport transfers are included as part of your Enrichment Journey. Local representatives will advise you of the departure time from your hotel the night before departure. Generally speaking, arrangements have been made to have you at the airport approximately three hours in advance of departure, though this may vary depending on local circumstances. At the end of the cruise, an airport transfer will also be provided. Please advise your Personal Vacation Manager if you do not require transfer arrangements at the time of booking your Journey.

Cell phones

Some cell phones will work overseas, but incur additional charges for the use. Choose whether you would like to add an international plan by calling your carrier, or consider purchasing a pay-as-you-go phone overseas. However, in some destinations, many smartphones and tablets can pick up wireless Internet for free.

Protecting the Value of Your Travel Investment

Enrichment Journeys offers a comprehensive travel insurance package you can purchase alongside your trip. It eases the mind and lets you cancel your trip for a covered reason up until the departure date with a full refund of the Journey.

The insurance covers a wide variety of incidents, including travel delay, emergency medical services and even baggage delay. You will also receive a pre-existing medical conditions waiver if travel insurance is purchased within 14 days of your initial deposit. For a full list of coverage provided, visit the FAQ section of the website.

Medical Issues and Handicaps

As with any extensive trip abroad, our excursions with Enrichment Journeys will require some physical capabilities, including transfers from cruise ships, walking on cobblestone streets and navigating through some busy cities with guides. Although we encourage all types of travelers to join us, we do ask you are aware of your own physical limitations. Unfortunately, we cannot provide individual care to those who may have walkers, wheelchairs or other aids. Enrichment Journeys also cannot accommodate pregnant women past their six month gestation period. Please speak with one of our Personal Vacation Managers to see if certain itineraries are suitable for you and your needs. We are happy to suggest other viable options for you that are more accessible.

Per the requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act, travelers have the right to be reasonably accommodated in terms of tours in public situations. However, the laws do not apply for trips and outside the United States. So you must let Enrichment Journeys know ahead of time of any physical limitations, including information added to our questionnaire that needs to be filled out by all passengers. Failure to inform Enrichment Journeys of these limitations could result in refusal to participate, whether it be at the airport through the airline, on board the ship or at the accommodations booked.

If you have any sort of prescription medication, this should be a number one priority in packing. Bring extra, just in case. A small medical kit is also advisable for quick access to remedy minor aches and pains.

Briefing sessions

A local host or tour manager will be happy to guide you through the trip and answer all of your questions. Upon arrival to your destination, an Enrichment Journeys representative will meet with the group and go over items such as the daily schedule, weather and local customs.

Hotels

All hotels booked by Enrichment Journeys are held to a high standard of comfort and quality, in accordance to international accommodation standards and rating systems. However, each accommodation varies so you may experience various types of properties throughout your excursions.

Journey to Tuscany and the Greek Isles

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Journey to Tuscany and the Greek Isles

Regional Information

Travel Documentation

Have your passport and visas ready and available at all checkpoints. Scan and copy these documents to print out. It is recommended that you e-mail a copy to yourself and someone back home in the event these documents are misplaced. Also, it may be worth bringing an international ID or license.

Passport and Visa

To travel internationally, you must have a passport in good condition and it must be valid for at least 6 months after the last day of your trip. Visa requirements change frequently and for various reasons. As a result, our Personal Vacation Managers are not always able to provide visa information and you should not rely on the information provided below to be the most current and accurate. The best way to obtain up-to-date information regarding visa requirements is to visit the official US government website for Americans traveling abroad, Travel.State.Gov (Canadian citizens should visit https://travel.gc.ca/, for all other countries please visit your government website or local embassy), which details specific information on the countries you would like to visit, including visa requirements.

You may also use a third-party visa service. These services require an additional service fee but make the process of applying for a visa much simpler.

Note: as of November 2023, U.S. and Canadian passport holders traveling to Europe’s Schengen Zone may have to obtain an electronic travel authorization (ETIAS) for travel starting in May 2025. Since this Journey travels in 2024, you may not need the e-visa; however, we encourage you to verify at the official website listed below as the requirements may change. More information can be found at https://www.schengenvisainfo.com/etias/.

Vaccinations

Vaccinations are recommended to protect one’s health from preventable diseases abroad. It is always good to have routine vaccinations up to date when traveling for ailments such as chickenpox, measles and the flu shot. Use your own discretion when deciding on what vaccinations to have based on your preferences and personal medical history. During your Enrichment Journeys tour, the utmost care will be taken with prepared food, atmosphere and other elements, so the likelihood of contracting diseases is scarce.

For a list of recommended vaccinations based on destination, visit https://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel or feel free to contact the Center for Disease Control and Prevention directly at 1-800-232-4636.

Electric Current

You will need an adaptor for some parts of your trip.  To see what the plugs will look like at your destination, visit https://www.power-plugs-sockets.com/ and click on each country from the right menu.

You may also need to use a converter. Most countries outside of North and Central America use 220-240 V, whereas the U.S. and Canada use 110 V. However, most chargers these days have a box which will act as a converter so that it can be used in all countries around the world. If your charger box says “Input: 100-240V, 50/60 Hz” then you do NOT need to use a converter (but you may still need an adaptor so that the plugs fit in the socket).

Some hotels may have two and three pronged outlets to use for various appliances. Ship cabins also have outlets for you to use with their converter. However, we recommend having at least one or two adaptors with you, as we cannot guarantee that all hotels will be able to accommodate this.

Local Currency

Italy, Greece and Spain use the Euro (€), currency code EUR

Turkey uses the Turkish lira (₺), currency code TRY

For clients on the back-to-back cruise:

The United Kingdom (including Gibraltar) uses the Pound Sterling, also known as the British Pound (£), currency code GBP

Bermuda uses the Bermudian Dollar, but as it is fixed to the U.S. Dollar, the U.S. Dollar is commonly accepted

Portugal also uses the Euro

Please visit https://www.oanda.com/currency/converter/ for the current exchange rate.

How you handle your currency and financials while on the trip is up to you. Some people prefer to exchange all their money in advance, while others will rely solely on credit cards. We suggest having at least some local currency with you during the trip, at least enough to take a taxi if needed. Consider calling your bank ahead of time to make them aware of your international travel, especially when using cards or withdrawing money.

Tipping Guidelines

Tipping is always appreciated but not always required. Expect several instances throughout the hospitality industry that allow for tipping. Have small bills ready for hotel staff, boat crew, restaurant servers, drivers, guides and baggage handlers. If you have a meal outside the itinerary or hire a resident driver, a few dollars in the local currency is customary.

Gratuities are included for group meals, at hotels and at airports. The host, guide, or tour manager can be tipped roughly $8.00-$12.00 USD per person, per day. Drivers can be tipped $5 USD per person, per day. Onboard the ship, gratuities are usually included when sailing with Celebrity Cruises (if you are unsure if your cruise reservation includes gratuities, please ask your Personal Vacation Manager).

For more information about when and how much to tip in each country, feel free to speak with your tour guide at the start of your Journey. A good reference for international tipping is https://www.cntraveler.com/stories/2008-11-11/etiquette-101-tipping-guide.

Time Differences

Please be aware that you may be crossing through several time zones throughout your Journey. To view a time zone map, visit https://m.worldtimezone.com/m-index12.php.

Climate

With the tour covering various regions, you will most likely come in contact with warm and/or cool weather, occasional rain, wind and/or damp environments. Check the weather online before departing for an up-to-date look at the conditions in major destinations.

Many countries outside of North America use Celsius. Here is a °C to °F quick reference guide:

-5° C = 23° F 5° C = 41° F 15° C = 59° F 25° C = 77° F 35° C = 95° F
0° C = 32° F 10° C = 50° F 20° C = 68° F 30° C = 86° F 40° C = 104° F

High/Low Temperatures in Fahrenheit:

JAN FEB MAR APR MAY JUN JUL AUG SEP OCT NOV DEC
Siena 48/39 48/39 54/43 59/46 68/54 73/61 81/66 81/66 73/61 66/55 55/46 48/41
Athens 53/44 54/44 57/47 64/52 71/59 80/67 82/71 82/71 77/66 70/60 62/53 56/47
Barcelona 59/48 59/47 63/50 67/55 73/60 80/68 84/73 85/74 79/69 73/62 65/54 60/49

Practice the Local Language

Knowing a few phrases in the local vernacular can be a wonderful way to connect with people and feel immersed in the culture. Here are some key words and phrases:

Italy: Italian

  • Buon giorno (Bwohn JOHR-noh): Hello
  • Come sta? (Koh-meh STAH?): How are you?
  • Non c’è problema (Non cheh proh-BLEH-mah): No problem.
  • Mi scusi (Mee SKOO-zee): Excuse me
  • Grazie (GRAHT-tsyeh): Thank you
  • Sì (SEE): Yes
  • No (Noh): No
  • Uomini (WOH-mee-nee): Men’s (restroom)
  • Donne (Dohn-NEH): Women’s (restroom)
  • Che tempo fa? (Keh TEHM-poh fah): How is the weather?

Visit https://www.17-minute-world-languages.com/en/italian/ for more phrases with sound.

Turkey: Turkish

  • Merhaba: Hello
  • Evet: Yes
  • Hayir: No
  • Teşekkür ederim: Thank you
  • Özür dilerim: Excuse me

Visit https://www.17-minute-world-languages.com/en/turkish/ for more phrases with sound.

Greece: Greek

  • Γεια σας (YAH sahss): Hello
  • Τι κάνετε (Tee KAH-neh-teh?): How are you?
  • Μάλιστα (MAH-li-sta): Yes
  • Όχι (OH-hee): No
  • Χάρηκα (HA-ree-ka): Nice to meet you
  • Παρακαλώ (Pah-rah-kah-LOH): Please
  • Ευχαριστώ (Ef-hah-rees-TOH): Thank you
  • Συγγνώμη (See-GHNO-mee): Excuse me
  • Βοήθεια! (Voh-EE-thee-yah!): Help!
  • Θέλω να πάω στην παραλία (Thelo-na pow-sti paralia): I want to go to the beach.

Visit https://www.17-minute-world-languages.com/en/greek/ for more phrases with sound.

Spain: Spanish

  • Hola (OH-lah): Hello
  • Adiós (ad-ee-OHS): Goodbye
  • Si (see): Yes
  • No (noh): No
  • Por favor (PAWR-fah-VAWR): Please
  • Gracias (GRAH-syahs): Thank you
  • Baño (BAH-nyoh): Bathroom

Visit https://www.17-minute-world-languages.com/en/spanish/ for more phrases with sound.

Fun Facts

Check out these interesting facts about the destinations you will visit on your Journey.

Italy

  • The name Italy comes from the word “italia”, meaning “calf land.” This is due to the bull being a symbol of the ancient Southern Italian tribes.
  • Tuscany has a long wine history; it can be traced back to the 5th century BCE. Grapes were first cultivated by the Etruscans nearly 3,000 years ago, grown in such wide abundance that they were often sold overseas and quickly became the area’s most trusted cash crop. 80% of all wines produced in Tuscany are produced with red grapes, the vast majority of which use Sangiovese as a grape.
  • Italy is approximately 116,400 square miles, including the islands of Sicily and Sardinia, which is slightly larger than Arizona.
  • Famous Italian explorers include Christopher Columbus, Marco Polo, John Cabot and Amerigo Vespucci.
  • No other country in Europe has as many volcanoes as Italy. This is because the Italian peninsula stands on a fault line. Three major volcanoes have erupted in the last century.

Turkey

  • Turkey is one of the world’s largest hazelnut exporters.
  • Turkey’s coastline along the black sea stretches for over 1000 miles.
  • Tulips were introduced to Europe by traders (especially Dutch traders) from Turkey in the 16th century. The word “tulip” comes from the Turkish word for turban, tulbent.
  • Turkey is slightly larger than the state of Texas.
  • The ancient city of Troy was located in modern day Turkey./li>

Spain

  • The first novel was written by a Spaniard. Cervantes’ Don Quixote, written in 1605, is considered to be the first modern novel.
  • The first known stapler was made in the 18th century in Spain’s Basque region for the French King Louis XV – and every single staple was engraved with the royal emblem. Spain has also given the world the mop and bucket (1956) and the astronaut’s space suit (1935).
  • Spain includes a number of islands including Mallorca, Tenerife, Ibiza and Gran Canaria. Many can be found in the Canary Islands, an archipelago off the northwest coast of Africa.

Greece

  • There are 10.7 million people in Greece, with its capital city of Athens hosting roughly three million residents.
  • Athens was the capital of Ancient Greece and the birthplace of democracy.
  • About 80% of Greece is mountainous and 50% is covered by forests.
  • There are about 3000 islands, only a few hundred of which are inhabited.
  • Ancient Greece is said to have laid the foundation for Western civilization, having a large influence on the Roman Empire and European culture.
  • Many Greek structures such as doors, windowsills, furniture and church domes are painted a turquoise blue, especially in the Cyclades Islands. It is used because of an ancient belief that this shade of blue keeps evil away.

Recommended Reading List

Vacation should be easy, peaceful and, most of all, completely stress-free. Let us handle the details, so you can sit back, relax and curl up with a good book as you count down the days to your next Journey! We’ve compiled the following list of books and movies to introduce you to the destinations you are about to visit.

Books

  • Italy: The Italians by Luigi Barzini
  • Italy: Under the Tuscan Sun by Frances Mayes (also a movie)
  • Italy: The Rise and Fall of the House of Medici by Christopher Hibbert
  • Italy: A Room with a View by E.M. Forester (also a movie)
  • Greece: Iliad by Homer
  • Greece: The Summer of My Greek Taverna: A Memoir by Tom Stone
  • Turkey: Istanbul: The Imperial City by John Freely
  • Turkey: Istanbul: City of Majesty at the Crossroads of the World by Thomas F. Madden
  • Turkey: My Name Is Red by Orhan Pamuk
  • Spain: Cities of Spain by David Gilmour
  • Spain: Iberia by James A. Michener
  • Spain: Don Quixote by Miguel de Cervantes

Travel Guides

Films

  • Italy: Eat Pray Love (2010)
  • Italy: Under the Tuscan Sun (2003)
  • Italy: Roman Holiday (1953)
  • Italy: Gladiator (2000)
  • Italy: Angels and Demons (2009)
  • Italy: La Dolce Vita (1960)
  • Greece: Mamma Mia! (2008)
  • Greece: 300 (2006)
  • Greece: Troy (2004)
  • Turkey: From Russia with Love (1963)
  • Turkey: A Touch of Spice (2003)
  • Turkey: Topkapi (1964)
  • Turkey: The Accidental Spy (2001)
  • Turkey: Crossing the Bridge: The Sound of Istanbul (2005)
  • Spain: Vicky Cristina Barcelona (2009)

Journey to Tuscany and the Greek Isles

eJourney Guide

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  • Day-by-Day Itinerary
  • Preparing for Your Trip
  • Frequently Asked Questions
  • Local Cultural Information
  • Recommended Readings
  • And so much more!
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