RAA Worldwide Travel Program
Join your fellow alums as we travel to exciting destinations around the world. Whether your interests run to the exotic (like an African safari), or destinations steeped in history (such as a trip exploring ancient Roman history or a cruise on the inland Russian waterways), or an Asian adventure to China and beyond, or even a week in our great National Parks out West, we have something for you. Take a look at our program and discover the joys of traveling with fellow alums.
NEW this year - "Heaven & Earth Around the World." Circle the globe, exploring natural wonders, ancient treasures, and the powerful influence the heavens have had on cultures throughout history. Travel on a private Boeing 757, with limited VIP seating. Visit Mayan ruins, Easter Island, the Great Barrier Reef, and so much more. Click for complete information.
We are always looking for new ideas and suggestions for future trips. If you have an idea that you’d like to share with us, please click here.
Here’s a Look at our 2013 Trips
Mediterranean Marvels (April 20 – 28, 2013): Enchantment awaits you aboard Oceania Cruises new, perfectly-sized (1250 passengers) brand-new ship Riviera (which has received rave reviews) on this one week cruise from Barcelona to Rome. If you have never visited Spain’s Catalan capital, a real treat awaits you. I encourage you to make your way to Barcelona a few days early, to give you a chance to get to know this architecturally and culturally-rich city. You won’t be disappointed; the city is a feast for all the senses. Then, sailing from Barcelona, we’ll next visit Provence, France, with port calls in Marseille, St. Tropez and Monte Carlo, where we can see the sights of historic and cosmopolitan Marseille, and the delightful little fishing port of Cassis. In St. Tropez we can stroll where the movie stars spend time, right on the shore of the enchanting Mediterranean. And then Monte Carlo, the city of Princess Grace, will delight at every turn; where the mega-yachts are a must-see. Next, we’ll leave France and set sail for the three Italian ports of Portofino, Livorno, and Sorrento, before our cruise ends in the eternal city of Rome. One is more delightful than the next: Portofino is a jewel of a small town, from which you can easily catch a local ferry for the twenty-minute ride to Santa Margherita. Livorno is the port city for the Tuscany region that includes Florence and Pisa, cities filled with history and stunning works of art. And Sorrento, on the stunning Amalfi coast, is a treat in itself, and an easy boat ride to the beautiful isle of Capri. Prices for this fabulous week begin at just $1,799 per person, and include free round-trip air transportation from many cities in the U.S. Click here for more details and booking information.
Best of the Mediterranean & The Greek Islands (May 4 - 15, 2013): If your ideal vacation is spending nearly two weeks on a wonderful new cruise ship, calling on ports in the history-rich Mediterranean Sea, then this may just be the answer to your dreams. Aboard Oceania Cruise Lines new ship Riviera, with just 1,250 passengers, we’ll sail from Venice to Athens, pampered by outstanding service in luxurious accommodations all the way. We’ll begin with two days in Venice, where you can savor the majestic beauty of this amazing city, gliding along its canals, past such sites as the Doge’s Palace, St. Mark’s Basilica, the glass factories in Murano, and so much more. Venice is truly one of Italy’s (and the world’s) great treasures. From there we’ll sail to the once-fortified Old Town of Koper, in Slovenia, where there are so many attractions including the famed Postojna Caves, the most popular underground attraction in Europe. Then we stop in Dubrovnik (Croatia), a walled medieval city that is a “must-see” on any sophisticated traveler’s itinerary. To round out our Balkan stops we’ll call at Kotor (Montenegro), a medieval city of twisting, pink-paved streets and stunning architecture. Next we stop at three Greek Islands: Corfu, with its glorious scenery; Monemvasia, known as the “Gibraltar of the East,” and Santorini, famous for its whitewashed hilltop towns and stunning beauty. For our last port we’ll call at Kusadasi (Turkey), and explore the world-famous ancient ruins at Ephesus, with its huge, remarkably well-preserved amphitheater, marble roads, mosaic sidewalks, and its superb Terrace Houses. Finally we’ll dock at Piraeus, the port of Athens, where our cruise ends. Prices for this remarkable trip start at only $3,499 per person, and include free round-trip air transportation fro most U.S. cities. Click here for full details.
The Villages and Vineyards of Tuscany & The Piedmont Regions of Italy – Castiglione del Lago, Lucca, and Pollenzo (May 7 – 17, 2013): The Tuscany region of Italy is celebrated for its breathtaking natural beauty, magnificent Renaissance art and architecture, and superb wines and cuisine. Its historic hilltop towns are living postcards, where ancient ramparts encircle colorful piazzas, elegant Etruscan fountains, stately palazzos, and bustling cafes. On this wonderful alumni trip we’ll discover the best of this storied region, from the charming towns of Cortona, Montepulciano, Pienza, and Pisa, to the walled old city of Lucca (Puccini’s hometown where we’ll be treated to a special opera dinner). Along the way we’ll spend time in Florence, the heart of Tuscany and the soul of the Renaissance. Then we’ll continue to the Piedmont Region, known for its hilly landscapes, wonderful vineyards, delicious food, and rich culture. We’ll explore Pollenzo, Turin (the region’s capital), where we’ll admire the works of art housed in the Collezione Maramotti. And we will discover the many treasures of the Venaria Reale, from the Royal Palace to the beautifully landscaped gardens to its culinary events. If you have not traveled in these wonderful regions of Italy I invite you to come along; I promise you won’t be disappointed! Prices for this wonderful Italian holiday begin at just $4,495 per person, based on two people traveling together and sharing a room. Click here for more complete information.
Civil War & Southern Culture – An All-American Steamboat Cruise on the Mighty Mississippi, from Memphis to New Orleans (May 17 - 26):
Now here is something truly new and different in your Alumni Travel Program – a chance to spend a full week aboard the American Queen, the only authentic overnight paddlewheel steamboat cruising on America’s rivers. Join us as we cruise in the heartland of America, and follow the footprints of the boys in blue and gray to the Civil War battlefields, home to some of the bloodiest fighting and greatest casualties that this country has ever seen. On this cruise we’ll benefit from the expertise of our resident “Riverlorian,” and his lectures on this critical period in our country’s history. And all along we’ll enjoy the grand accommodations and sumptuous cuisine of the American Queen. Our trip begins in Memphis, Tennessee, where we’ll spend two nights in the historic Peabody Memphis Hotel, with an included excursion to Shiloh National Military Park, on the Tennessee-Mississippi border, where Union troops fought under General Grant. In Memphis we’ll board the American Queen bound for Helena, Arkansas, the Queen of the Arkansas Delta, our first stop. Helena is filled with terrifically preserved architecture, and the Delta Cultural Center lays out the antebellum roots of the city, founded in part by Andrew Jackson. The Center is also the home of King Biscuit Time – the nation’s longest-running blues radio program and the worldwide springboard for Delta blues. Our next stop is Vicksburg, Mississippi, site of a dramatic siege and major turning point in the Civil War. Vicksburg is now a center of Southern hospitality with a vibrant downtown area. Historic landmarks include the Cedar House, with five acres of stunning gardens, and Anchuca, the first columned mansion in Vicksburg. Continuing in Mississippi we next call at Natchez, where we’ll step into the plantation lifestyle of the antebellum South, one of the oldest European settlements in the lower Mississippi River Valley and the original state capital. Explore the Grand Village of the Natchez Indians, visit historic Jefferson College, marvel at numerous restored mansions, or just amble down the Natchez Trace. From here we head to St. Francisville, Louisiana, with its truly iconic Louisiana plantation homes of the legacies of the Butlers, the Forts, the
Barrows and the Turnbulls – families who helped build the South. And we’ll follow in the footsteps of the guests who stayed here, including Andrew Jackson and John James Audubon. Next we head to the capital of Louisiana, Baton Rouge, the center of all the great things the state has to offer. With its semi-tropical climate, Baton Rouge is a year-round playground, and one of the South’s fastest growing cities. Next it’s Oak Alley, located in the Saint James Parish, and the Oak Alley plantation that combines architectural splendor and the natural wonder of 300-year-old oak trees. Finally we’ll conclude our adventure in New Orleans, where we’ll tie up near historic Jackson Square where we’ll our ship adieu. For more information on the American Queen, have a look at this recent article that appeared in the New York Times. Prices for this fabulous All-American ten-day holiday begin at just $2,095 per person, based on two people traveling together and sharing a stateroom. Click here for complete booking information.
A Week in Cortona, Italy, in the heart of Tuscany (May 22 – 30, 2013): Come join us as we spend a week “Under the Tuscan Sun,” the very area where Frances Mayes, in her book of that name, captures the charm and romance of Italian living. Here is the perfect opportunity to experience this idyllic world firsthand on a special program that combines guided sightseeing excursions with ample free time to immerse yourself in community life. Wander through the streets of Cortona, the base from which we’ll explore this storied area. Delight in the bustle of the main square, and the aroma of warm baked goods and fresh cappuccino wafting from the quaint shops and cafes. Explore the tranquility of Assisi, and the graceful Gothic ambience of Siena. See the fascinating medieval history in Perugia, the well-preserve jewel of Umbria. And spend time in the charming town of Montepulciano, and marvel at the architectural wonders of Florence – jewel of the Renaissance. Like Mayes’ story, you’ll find that Tuscany will weave its way into your heart and mind. Here we’ll discover the art, architecture, cuisine and culture of one of Italy’s most beloved regions. Prices for this wonderful Italian holiday begin at just $2,895 per person, based on two people traveling together and sharing a room. Click here for more complete information.
A Week in Aix-en-Provence, France – Alumni Campus Abroad (June 4 – 12, 2013): Provence, where sun-drenched beaches and undulating hills tie the Mediterranean Sea to the Alps, conjures images of idyllic days with dazzling light illuminating the verdant countryside’s storied vineyards and lush olive groves. The spectacular scenery of this magical region enraptured Cezanne, Chagall, and van Gogh. Writers have flocked here and extolled it as the Great Land of Inspiration – for all that is both French and fabulous. If you cannot spend “A Year in Provence” as author Peter Mayle did, you can certainly take a week for a holiday that you will remember for a lifetime. And here I speak from personal experience. Three years ago my wife and I joined about a dozen other alums on this trip, and it was – in a word – perfect. We stayed for one week at the Hotel Roi Rene in Aix, the perfect spot to be based for a week. Aix is a charming small city, wonderfully located for our excursions to Arles, the Pont du Gard, Avignon, Cezanne’s studio, the Le Luberon region, Les Baux, and so much more. If you have always wanted to spend time in the south of France, this may just be the perfect opportunity. Prices for wonderful vacation begin at just $2,995 per person, based on two people traveling together and sharing a room. Click here for more complete information.
Portrait of Italy: From the Amalfi Coast to Venice (June 4-20, 2013):
This is one of our unique small group tours, limited to just 24 travelers. This special motorcoach trip will take us from the breathtaking Amalfi Coast to eternal Rome, through the gentle Umbrian and Tuscan countryside to timeless Venice, at a leisurely pace, showcasing ancient sites, contemporary life, priceless art, and beautiful natural scenery. Our small group size allows us to stay in unique accommodations in the Tuscan countryside and a medieval village. We’ll begin in Naples, from which we’ll have a short ride to the spectacular hillside town of Amalfi, the mountaintop town of Ravello, and even a short cruise (weather permitting). We’ll stop in Pompeii, the city frozen in time by the eruption of Mt. Vesuvius in 79 A.D., and take a breathtaking drive along the winding Amalfi Coast high above the azure Mediterranean. Enroute to Rome we will visit the town of Montecassino, whose Abbey is the mother church of the Benedictine order and a center of medieval art. In Rome we will visit the 55,000-seat Colosseum, the temples of the Forum, the fashionable Via Veneto; the Trevi Fountain; the Vatican for a tour of St. Peter’s Square and Basilica, and the Sistine Chapel. Next we visit Orvieto, perched high on a plateau above a vineyard-clad plain, and the peaceful town of Todi, before we get to Assisi, considered a gem of an Umbrian town, with the renowned Basilica di San Francesco, the burial place of St. Francis. Next is the equally alluring region of Tuscany, including Deruta, known for its prized hand-painted Majolica ceramics, Perugia, and Siena, whose ochre-colored buildings and ancient ramparts evoke the city’s medieval past. And, of course, to Florence, the crown jewel of Tuscany, where we’ll spend a full-day immersed in its culture, including the Galleria dell’Accademia to view Michelangelo’s sublime “David,” as well as the revered duomo, with its stupendous dome by Brunelleschi. We will also visit the hill town of San Gimignano, known for the 13 watchtowers that have left its skyline virtually unchanged since medieval times. Finally we’ll travel through the Veneto region to Venice, where we’ll have ample time to enjoy this wondrous city before we bid “arrivederci” to Italy and our fellow travelers. Prices for this Portrait of Italy begin at $4,695 per person; click here for complete information.
Ancient Kingdoms of China – Shanghai to Beijing, including a one-week Grand Yangtze River Cruise from Shanghai to Beijing (June 13 – 28, 2013): Join us as we travel to Mysterious China, a land whose stunning beauty forms the backdrop to a 5,000-year-old civilization steeped in legend. Here, the people’s reverence for ancestral customs has been passed on through kingdoms and dynasties and preserved from one generation to the next, not only influencing life today but providing a springboard for the future as well. Our trip will begin in Shanghai (current population over 23 million), and end in Beijing, with stops in fascinating cities along the way. The highlight of our journey will be a seven-night Grand Cruise aboard our exclusively chartered, M/V Victoria Sophia, the finest river ship cruising the entire course of the Yangtze. We’ll sail all the way from stunning Shanghai to Chongqing, through the magnificent Yangtze River Gorges – both the magnificent Three Gorges as well as the Three Lesser Gorges. We’ll also visit one of the world’s greatest engineering marvels: the Three Gorges Dam, and we’ll visit regions seldom seen by Westerners— Nánjing, former capital of Imperial China; Huangshan, famous for its majestic Yellow Mountain range, a UNESCO World Heritage site; and Wuhan, settled more than 3,000 years ago by the Han Dynasty. All in all we’ll visit six UNESCO World Heritage sites on this comprehensive journey, traveling half the width of China, witnessing firsthand the juxtaposition of its ancient culture with its 21st-century advancements. We’ll see the historic neighborhoods of Old Shanghai and the contrasting 21st-century architecture of Pudong, and visit the imperial dignity of Mandarin Beijing and Tiananmen Square as well. And -- on this trip – we will have a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to meet Julie Nixon Eisenhower, who will share her perspectives and firsthand accounts on the pivotal role her late father, President Richard M. Nixon, played in bringing Communist China out of isolation and into the modern world -- reopening U.S. relations for the first time since 1949. This China trip is the most comprehensive program available to alumni travelers, and includes specially selected, English-speaking local experts and guides to accompany us; carefully selected, five-star hotel accommodations in the best locations, including the legendary Peace Hotel in Shanghai; opportunities to meet the fascinating people of China; and a historic eyewitness perspective on international relations with this country. If you have any interest in China, this is one trip you do not want to miss. Prices begin at just $3,995 per person (based on two people traveling together and sharing a room). Click here for more details and booking information.
The Changing Tides of History – Cruise the Baltic Sea from Oslo to Stockholm with Mikhail Gorbachev and Lech Walesa (June 21 – July 2, 2013): This is truly a once-in-a-lifetime Baltic Sea cruise, featuring a rare opportunity to hear enriching lectures by two historic world leaders—former President of the Soviet Union Mikhail Gorbachev and former President of Poland Lech Wałesa. This unique opportunity to experience one of the great cruises of the world begins in scenic Oslo, Norway, cruises through the spectacular Oslo Fjord, and then stops at Copenhagen (Denmark), Gdansk (Poland), Tallinn (Estonia), St. Petersburg (Russia), Helsinki (Finland), before concluding in Stockholm (Sweden). There may be no more fascinating place to cruise than this Baltic region, home to so much history, as well as six UNESCO World Heritage sites. On this unique voyage we’ll sail aboard the exclusively chartered, five-Star small ship, m.s. Le Boréal to see first-hand the cultural rebirth of the Baltic States, and the imperial riches of St. Petersburg, Russia. In the tradition of the ancient Viking mariners and medieval merchants, we’ll cruise under the glistening White Nights of summer from Norway’s beautiful and sophisticated capital city of Oslo to the exceptionally “green” and cosmopolitan Stockholm, Sweden. And we’ll have a chance to discover the stunning architecture of Helsinki, Finland; spend two days in regal St. Petersburg (including a tour of the world-acclaimed State Hermitage Museum and visits to the Peter and Paul Fortress and the spectacular czarist palaces at Petrodvorets and Pushkin). And we’ll experience the well preserved medieval Old Town of Tallinn (Estonia’s capital), and immerse ourselves in the historic epicenter of the Solidarity movement in Gdansk, Poland. This is a rare opportunity to be in the company of two historic world leaders, and to enjoy a comprehensive look at the diverse countries bordering the Baltic Sea. And, of course, there are shore excursions in each port (included) led by expert, English speaking guides. And let me add that I was on a similar cruise in the summer of 2011 (without the famous guests that we will see here), and it was an absolutely fascinating trip. This is one that you will not want to miss – trust me! Prices begin at just $7,795 per person (based on two people traveling together and sharing a room). Click here for more details and booking information.
A Week in Prague, the Czech Republic, (July 1 – 9, 2013): Few cities anywhere in Europe are as beautiful and well-preserved as Prague. This European gem, steeped in centuries of tradition and lore, Prague captivates the imagination with its cobblestone streets, gold-tipped spires, and graceful bridges that span the Vltava River. But it is also a center of modern dynamism, a hub of heroic resistance and profound cultural change. Join us as we discover this Bohemian jewel on this unique program that affords a behind-the-scenes look at some of its most important landmarks. We’ll explore Prague Castle (including a private visit to the Castle Gardens), the centuries-old complex that is representative of virtually every significant architectural period. We’ll stroll across the Charles Bridge, the city’s most famous landmark, and discover the city’s theater and music traditions during special backstage visits to the Estates Theater and Prague’s unique Laterna Magika. And we’ll gain insights into the city’s art and culture during a guided tour of the Strahov Monastery. Prague’s city center is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and we’ll stay seven nights in the fabulous Art Deco Imperial Hotel right in the heart of the city. Prices for this wonderful week in Prague begin at just $2,995 per person, based on two people traveling together and sharing a room. Click here for more complete information.
British Isles & Norwegian Fjords (August 14 - 27, 2013): Join us on a wonderful two-week cruise through the British Isles and into Norway’s spectacular fjords. You’ll quickly find that our Oceania cruises perfectly-sized (just 684 passengers) ship Nautica will pamper you in luxury at every turn – especially in the dining room where you’ll find some of the best cuisine at sea. We’ll begin our cruise in Dover (of the White Cliffs fame), England, and proceed to Scotland with stops in Edinburgh’s port of Leith; Invergordon (recognized for its rich naval history); and Lerwick in the rugged, beautiful Shetland islands – home of the famous ponies. Our next stop is in the beautiful Scandinavian country of Norway, justly famed for its stunning beauty virtually everywhere. Here we’ll first call at Alesund – a city destroyed by fire in 1904 and rebuilt in the Art Noveau style. Today it enjoys a well-deserved architectural reputation. Then we’ll cruise into what is arguably the most spectacular of all the Norwegian fjords – Geiranger Fjord. Be sure to have your cameras out: the scenery is absolutely stunning in every direction. And we’ll even stop briefly in Hellesylt, Norway’s oldest Viking port. Leaving this northern paradise, we’ll spend a day at sea before stopping at three cities in Ireland, Belfast (Northern Ireland), Dublin and Cork, each a gem in its own right. And finally, before returning to Dover, we’ll stop in Portland (England), in the heart of England’s dramatic Jurassic Coast. Prices for this two-week cruise begin at just $4,999 per person, and include free round-trip airfare from several major U.S. cities. Click here for more details and booking information.
Taste of Europe (London to Barcelona – Aug. 26 – Sept. 6, 2013): Here is an opportunity to visit four European countries on a ten day cruise aboard Oceania cruises perfectly-sized (684 passengers) ship Nautica, that will pamper you in luxury every day. We’ll begin our trip in Dover, England, and sail to Saint-Malo, France, on the rugged Brittany coast, where the mystical Mont St. Michel is close at hand. Next we call at Pont-Aven, where the walled town of Concarneau is one of the most beautiful in all of Brittany. And our last stop in France is Le Verdon, gateway to the famous wine-producing Bordeaux region. Be sure to visit such famous wine chateaux as Medoc, Saint-Emilion, and Sauternes. Leaving France we’re off to Spain, and the 700-year old city of Bilbao, home to the famous Frank Gehry designed, world famous Guggenheim Museum. From Bilbao we’ll sail to La Coruna, close to the beautiful pilgrimage city of Santiago de Compostela, and its magnificent cathedral. From here our next stop will be Oporto (Portugal), home to the famed port wine industry. Continuing in Portugal we sail next to the capital city of Lisbon, with its ornate Belem Tower and home to one of the largest public squares in all of Europe. And our last stop will be in Seville, home to the famed Giralda Tower, and the gorgeous Alcazar and its gardens. After a day at sea we’ll disembark in Barcelona, where I encourage you to stay for a few extra days, to give you a chance to get to know this architecturally culturally-rich city. You won’t be disappointed; the city is a feast for all the senses, with a fabulous beach and waterfront. Prices for this Taste of Europe begin at just $3,999 per person, and include free round-trip airfare from several major U.S. cities. Click here for more details and booking information.
The Grand Danube Passage, an 8-night River Cruise aboard the year-old MS Amadeus Brilliant, from Prague to Sofia (Sept. 15 - 30, 2013): If Prague, Budapest and Vienna have always been on your “must see” list, then this may just be the perfect vacation for you. Join your fellow alums as we spend two weeks (including an 8-night river cruise) traveling from Prague to Vienna, to Budapest, Belgrade and Sofia. Along the way we’ll also visit Passau (Germany), where we’ll board the MS Amadeus Brilliant for a river cruise to Melk/Durnstein, Vienna, Bratislava, Budapest, Kalocsa, Mohacs, Belgrade, and finally through the famous Iron Gate Gorge to Vidin and Sofia (Bulgaria). Napoleon once described the Danube as the “King of Europe’s Rivers,” for it is steeped in legend unlike any other waterway in Europe. Its winding course offers a veritable feast of unparalleled history, ancient capitals, picturesque villages, Roman ruins, magnificent churches, palaces and medieval castles. All in all we’ll visit twelve cities and towns in eight countries, in a trip that will ensure life-long memories. Prices for this two-week vacation begin at just $4,395 per person, based on two people traveling together and sharing a room. Click here for more complete information.
Provincial French Countryside (September 27 – October 11, 2013): Another of our unique small group tours (limited to just 24 travelers), this special motorcoach trip will take us from Toulouse, in Southern France, to Paris two weeks later. Join us as ww experience the beauty, allure, and hospitality of provincial France, at an easy pace and in a unique style. Anchored by stays in vibrant Toulouse and enchanting Paris, our journey features diverse Languedoc, the remote Dordogne, the lovely Loire Valley, and historic Normandy as we stay in charming rural inns and small country hotels. It’s a small group tour de force! Highlights include Carcassonne, the quintessential medieval town with the longest city walls in Europe, Alibi, the hometown of Belle Epoque artist Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, the Dordogne Valley, Sarlat-la-Canéda, one of France’s prettiest villages and one of Europe’s best preserved medieval gems, with more registered historic sites than anywhere else on the continent. We’ll also travel along the Loire Valley, stopping in picturesque Saumur where we’ll stay in a converted 18th-century mansion on the banks of the Loire River. Then traveling north, we’ll stop at Mont-St-Michel, Normandy’s famed Gothic abbey that sits atop a 264-foot high rock formation at the edge of the sea. We’ll have time to commemorate World War II with a stop at the British Cemetery, and then continue on to Caen to visit the Memorial Museum devoted to “history for peace.” Next we’ll visit Normandy’s D-Day Landing Beaches, the very places where Allied forces overcame overwhelming odds to alter the course of World War II. Then it’s off to the lovely, picturesque port of Honfleur before continuing on to the village of Giverny and the home and gardens of Impressionist artist Claude Monet. Our last stop is the City of Light, where we’ll get acquainted with one of the world’s great cities, including an inside visit to the Louvre. Prices for this Provincial French Countryside begin at $4,795 per person; click here for complete information.
A Week in Sestri Levante, on the Italian Riviera – Alumni Campus Abroad (Sept. 28 – Oct. 6, 2013): The Italian Riviera has been captivating visitors for centuries – and in a few short days spent here will make the reasons clear . The area is known for its sparkling, turquoise waters, and lush green landscapes. The streets of Sestri Levante itself are lined with pastel-colored houses, all just steps away from the neighboring picture-perfect bays. Here we’ll discover the charms of the nearby villages including Santa Margherita, Portofino, Portovenere, Manarola, and the other towns of the Cinque Terre. We’ll also have a chance to visit the town of Carrara, known for its snow-white marble, where we’ll see a sculptor at work. And we’ll also spend time in Genoa, the fabled port city that houses the birthplace of Christopher Columbus. And, we’ll spend the last day, in the beautiful walled city of Lucca, an Italian gem. It is said that no one who travels to Italy ever has a bad time; if you join us on this trip I know that you’ll agree! Prices for wonderful Italian holiday begin at just $2,995 per person, based on two people traveling together and sharing a room. Click here for more complete information.
A Grand Journey Around the World, from Japan to Germany (Sept. 21 – Oct. 16, 2013): This three-and-a-half-week expedition to see the world’s greatest sights is truly a once-in-a-lifetime experience. Accompanied by knowledgeable guides accompanying us every step of the way, we’ll discover the history and culture of Japan, China, Thailand, the United Arab Emirates (Dubai), Egypt, Jordan, Israel and Germany. This small group trip is limited to just 20 people, who will travel in Business Class and stay in specially selected world-class hotels. We’ll visit ten UNESCO World Heritage sites, including ancient Kyoto and Nara in Japan; the Great Wall, the Imperial Palace of the Ming and Qing dynasties, and the Temple of Heaven in China; Ayutthaya, Thailand; ancient Thebes and the pyramids of Giza in Egypt; Petra, Jordan; Masada, Israel; and the Upper Middle Rhine Valley in Germany. This is truly a once-in-a-lifetime never-to-be-forgotten travel opportunity, at a surprisingly affordable price ($40,995 per person, air inclusive, with a $2,500 Early Savings discount if you book by March 20, 2013). Get more information by clicking here.
Villages and Vineyards of the Mosel, Rhine and Main Rivers: 7-Night River Cruise in Germany (Oct. 7 – 15, 2013): I invite you to spend a week cruising with us aboard the deluxe MS Amadeus Diamond (5-star, 150 passengers), along the principal rivers in Germany. Our river cruise begins on the Mosel, arguably the most beautiful river in Germany, with beautiful vineyards perched along its steep banks. Here you’ll feel as if you are sailing right through a picturesque painting! We’ll cruise along the Mosel, beginning in Bernkastel-Kues, and stopping in Trier and Koblenz, where the Mosel joins the majestic Rhine River. Here we’ll see the legendary Lorelei Rock, and the towns of Rudesheim, and Riesling (home of the famous wine of the same name), before sailing into the Main River for our first stop at Miltenberg. From here it’s just a short hop to the magnificent Heidelberg Castle. And finally our cruise ends in romantic Wurzburg, nestled in a charming valley, and home to the storied Romantic Road, with its treasure trove of castles, including the most famous Neuschwanstein Castle. Aboard this deluxe river cruiser, built in 2009, you’ll find every amenity of a luxury hotel. Truly there is no better way to see Europe than relaxing on the upper deck and watching the world pass leisurely by. Prices for this 7-night cruise begin at just $2,725 per person, based on two people traveling together and sharing a room. Click here for more complete information.
Voyage of Ancient Empires – Cruise from Malta to Rome (October 11 – 19, 2013): Join us as we travel across the historic sea lanes of the Mediterranean and Tyrrhenian Seas, aboard the exclusively chartered, 5-Star M. V. Tere Moana, as we discover the fascinating mix of cultures left in the wake of ancient empires. On this exclusive journey we will visit the resplendent shores of Malta, Sicily, and Italy’s southern Mediterranean coast, all during the best time of year. And you’ll find that our sophisticated, just-renovated ship is the perfect size, (only ninety passengers), allowing us access to ports that simply cannot accommodate larger vessels. Our historic voyage begins in the fortified city of Valletta, Malta, founded in 1566 by the French Grand Master of the Order of the Knights of St. John. Next stop is Agrigento, Sicily, and its majestic Valley of Temples, one of the most memorable sights of the ancient world. Then we’ll explore Siracusa, where we will tour one of the best-preserved ancient Greek theaters in the world -- and enjoy a walking tour of the storied town of Taormina, in the shadow of famed Mt. Etna. And speaking of volcanoes, our ship will cruise past the volcanic island of Stromboli, still actively erupting today, and known as “The Lighthouse of the Mediterranean.” It has been used as a navigational marker for centuries. Next we’ll drive along Italy’s magnificent Amalfi Coast, and see first-hand its exceptional natural beauty. Our journey continues on to the storied Isle of Capri, and the famous ruins of Pompeii, with a guided tour of this stunning archaeological preservation. Our trip ends in the Eternal City of Rome, once the center of a vast empire, and today a UNESCO World Heritage site. All along the way we will be treated to lectures by an experienced Study Leader who will immerse us in the history, legends and modern life of these ancient cities, medieval ports and scenic landscapes. And there is even a chance for further exploration of the ancient city of Valletta and the Knights of St. John on a Pre-Cruise Option, and the Roman Empire on a Post-Cruise Option. Cruise prices begin at just $4,995 per person (based on two people traveling together and sharing a room). Click here for more details and booking information.
Classic China & The Yangtze (Sept. 24 - Oct. 7, 2013): If China has long been on your must-see list, then we have what may be the perfect solution: A small group (no more than 24 people) tour that is comprehensive in scope yet briefer in duration, and but relaxed and well-paced. This journey combines monumental Beijing, a cruise on the fabled Yangtze, fascinating Xian, and cosmopolitan Shanghai. And we’ll have the chance to meet local people and experience a host of China’s highlights, both ancient and modern. Come join us as we discover Beijing, the 2,000-year-old city at vast – and infamous – Tiananmen Square, and the Forbidden City, seat of imperial power during the Ming and Qing dynasties (1368-1911). We’ll have a rickshaw ride through Beijing’s ancient back roads and alleys (hutongs), where we’ll visit the home of a local family for a rare glimpse of the traditional communal lifestyle that is fast disappearing. Then it’s on to the Great Wall, the incredible collection of ancient defense installations (and UNESCO World Heritage site) that stretches almost 4,000 miles. And we’ll also visit the splendid Temple of Heaven complex where China’s emperors once worshipped. Next stop: Xian, once among the world’s greatest cities that devolved into a provincial backwater until the accidental discovery of the Terra Cotta Warriors in 1974 – considered among the most significant archaeological finds of the 20th century. We’ll also visit Chongqing, and the zoo housing the beloved pandas, as well as the Stilwell Museum dedicated to World War II General Joseph (“Vinegar Joe”) Stilwell. Next it’s “all aboard” our Victoria Cruises ship, for a three night cruise on the famed Yangtze River, prized for its haunting natural beauty. On board a river guide tells us about the river and the famous Three Gorges Dam project, one of the largest construction projects in the world. After we disembark we’ll fly to Shanghai, the “Paris of the East,” where – among other things, we’ll visit the Bund, the mile-long riverside embankment where foreign investors – and their buildings – once held sway over Shanghai. Prices for this Classic China & The Yangtze trip begin at $3,695 per person; click here for complete information.
Italian Inspiration (October 17-25, 2013):
Here’s a truism learned from thirty-plus years in the travel industry: “No one ever has a bad time in Italy.” It’s true; the people are wonderful, the weather is usually ideal; and the scenery is surprisingly beautiful at every turn. With that in mind, I invite you to join us on a wonderful week-long cruise from Rome to Venice, aboard the wonderful Oceania Cruise Lines new ship Riviera. We’ll set sail from Civitavecchia, the port of Rome, and stop first in Sorrento, where you can spend part of your day on the famed Isle of Capri. Next we’ll call at Amalfi/Positano, arguably the most beautiful area of Italy, with its charming, scenic hill towns – each more interesting than the other, clinging to the steep slopes above the sparkling waters of the Bay of Naples. Then we’ll call at Taormina, in Sicily, where you can see spectacular Mt. Etna – still an active volcano. From here we’ll make two stops in the Greek islands, at Zakynthos (with its famous Caretta-Caretta sea turtles), and Corfu (with its glorious scenery, serene monasteries, and wonderful beaches). And finally we’ll call at the medieval walled city of Dubrovnik (Croatia), a must on every Mediterranean travelers itinerary, before ending our cruise in one of the most romantic cities in the World: Venice. Prices for this wonderful cruise begin at just $1,999 per person and include free round-trip airfare from most U.S. cities. Click here for full details.
Paris, & The Villages & Vineyards of France (Oct. 22 – Nov. 3, 2013):
Join us as we discover the bucolic countryside, picturesque vineyards, and charming towns of Alsace, Burgundy and the magnificent Loire Valley, on a special program that combines the charm and history of these famous regions with the sophistication and beauty of Paris. We’ll begin our exploration in Strasbourg, home of the European Parliament (which we will visit) and gateway to the delightful Alsace Wine region. In Dijon, filled with incredible buildings from the 15th and 16th centuries, and centuries of prestige, we’ll walk in the footsteps of the Dukes of Burgundy, and stop in Beaune as well, a jewel in the region, along the legendary Route des Grand Crus. And little can top the history and opulence of the Loire Valley’s Chateau de Chambord. And finally we’ll conclude with two nights in Paris, the City of Light, filled with history and architectural treasures. Prices begin at $4,625 per person, based on two people traveling together and sharing a room. Click here for more complete information.
The Pride of Southern Africa (January 14 – 26, 2013): A trip to South Africa is often a lifetime dream, and we have the perfect opportunity to make your dream come true, aboard the six-star, all-suite luxury small ship of Silversea Cruises Silver Wind. On this voyage we’ll discover the staggering diversity of South Africa, “a world in one country.” We’ll see stunning natural beauty, exotic wildlife in abundance (more than 850 species of birds and a predominance of the “Big Five” wild animals), soaring mountains, expansive velds, lowlying grasslands, green gorges, lush swamplands, and 3,000 miles of spectacular coastline. Join us for this unique cruise for endless opportunities to discover this most amazing country. Here we’ll unpack just once, as we cruise round-trip from Cape Town with stops in Port Elizabeth, Richards Bay, Durban and East London, South Africa, and Maputo, Mozambique. Experience these the world-class cities and diverse cultures, while returning to your “floating hotel” every night. And soak up the grandeur of the landscape while on safaris at first light, and beneath the radiant glow of the African sunset. And if you wish, a three-night Victoria Falls Pre-Cruise and a two-night Cape Town Post-Cruise options are available (at any additional cost). Prices begin at just $6,395 per person, and include free round-trip air transportation from 43 gateway cities, and a $1000 per couple Passport to Luxury shipboard credit. Click here for complete information.
An Expedition to Antarctica (January 17 – 30, 2013): Here is certainly one of the most unusual trips that your Alumni Association has ever offered; join us as we travel to Antarctica, where Ernest Shackleton wrote “Everything wears an aspect of unreality; Icebergs hang upside-down in the sky, the land appears as layers of silvery or golden cloud, cloud banks look like land, and icebergs masquerade as islands.” This spectacular 14-day journey features a nine-night cruise to Antarctica, Earth’s last frontier. We’ll cruise aboard the exclusively chartered, intimate M.S. L’AUSTRAL, the finest vessel in Antarctic waters, combining innovative design with personalized service, and featuring private balconies in 95% of the deluxe, outside suites and staterooms. Here we’ll have a unique opportunity to experience the White Continent in its unspoiled state—fantastically shaped icebergs, turquoise glaciers, bustling penguin rookeries and breaching whales—during the lingering light of the austral summer. Accompanied by the ship’s expert expedition team of naturalists, we’ll board sturdy Zodiac craft for excursions ashore and observe the antics of Antarctica’s abundant wildlife: you’ll find that the penguins and seals, especially, are unafraid of human visitors. Our expedition team will provide a series of enriching lectures on this untouched wilderness. And our trip also includes two nights in a deluxe hotel in Buenos Aires, and features a cultural tour of this vibrant capital. Prices begin at just $7,595 per person, if you reserve your place by July 5, 2012. But this unique itinerary sells out every year; book now and don’t be disappointed. You may also extend your journey with our exclusive three-night Iguazú Falls Post-Program Option. Click here for complete information.
For more information on any of the programs, contact the alumni office at email@example.com, call (518)-276-6205, or e-mail Michael Wellner ’64 at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (212) 486-3064.
Travel Insurance. No matter where you are headed, travel insurance will give you peace of mind before you depart and while on tour. Our program covers:
- Trip cancellation and interruption
- Medical expenses
- Medical evacuation
- Baggage loss and delay
- Accidental death
- 24-hour emergency assistance
Remember, it is not only your own health that you should consider, but those of your loved ones as well. You may be completely healthy, but should a parent, child, or any family member become ill or be involved in an accident, and you need to cancel your trip to care for them, our insurance will cover you. Click here for complete information.
Customized Tour Programs
Are you are looking for a custom-tailored trip or tour for your group (Greek brothers or sisters, family members, social group, or friends)? We can help you plan for that special occasion! Contact Michael Wellner '64 at email@example.com or call (212) 486-3064 with your request.
Want more information on the AHI Travel opportunities? Take a look at their 2011 webinars on YouTube.