September 24–October 7, 2015
Admire Istanbul's magnificent Hagia Sophia before boarding Variety Voyager for an exciting Black Sea journey. From the Turkish port of Samsun, drive to Amasya, capital of the kings of Pontus from 333–26 B.C.E. Tour Trabzon's Old Town, and step ashore in Batumi, Georgia, to explore the ruins of ancient Gonio fortress. Spend a day on the "Russian Riviera" in Sochi and enjoy a private concert in a nineteenth-century palace in Odessa. Fly by chartered plane from Constanta to Suceava and marvel at the vibrant colors of the painted churches in Romania's countryside. Discover Nessebar, Bulgaria, before concluding in Istanbul. Optional Istanbul prelude.
Traveling with You: Sarah Graff, assistant curator in the Department of Ancient Near Eastern Art. Explore her 82nd & Fifth episode, "Bricks," about two striking lion panels from Babylon.
Land/Cruise Rates: from $9,995
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Above: Hagia Sophia, Istanbul, Turkey