Here is a passage through antiquity, an incomparable journey featuring a wealth of sites including the magnificent ‘Rose Red City’ of Petra and the fascinating ancient city of Hegra in Saudi Arabia which has only recently opened to tourists. These sites are irresistible attractions for the genuine traveller and as you explore these vast and complex Nabataean cities, whose wealth came from their proximity to the ancient Middle East trade routes, you cannot help but be impressed by the industry and sophistication of this ancient civilisation.
We begin our journey with five days of exploration in Jordan, which from the grandeur of Petra to the desert sands of Wadi Rum and the mystical Dead Sea is a country steeped in history and awe inspiring beauty. Petra, a city set deep in the Edom mountains and lost to Western ‘civilisation’ for hundreds of years, was hewn directly from the rock by the Nabataeans and is an amazing feat of engineering and construction. Following our time in Jordan, we will embark the MS Island Sky and sail to Saudi Arabia to discover Hegra, the country’s first UNESCO World Heritage Site and Petra’s sister city. Untouched and inaccessible to visitors until recently, Hegra is a truly captivating site which offers clues about the mysterious Nabataean Kingdom. Continuing on to Egypt, our focus moves to the great achievements of the Ancient Egyptians as we spend time exploring some of the country’s many wonders including the Pyramids of Giza and the Sphinx. A highlight for many will be our transit of the iconic Suez Canal enabling access to the Mediterranean city of Alexandria, the cultural and economic centre of the ancient Mediterranean and from where, after a day of exploration we will sail to the Cretan capital of Heraklion before ending our voyage in Athens.
This unusual itinerary offers a fascinating mix of some of the world’s most impressive and historic sites combined with time to relax on board the all-suite MS Island Sky. We have planned the journey for spring when temperatures will be pleasant for exploring and with the aid of our knowledgeable local guides and excellent Guest Speaker, we will learn of some fascinating ancient civilisations and empires.