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Heart of the Black Sea

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HEART

OF THE BLACK SEA

PAST TO PRESENT EXPEDITIONS

Experience a one-of-a-kind journey around the Black Sea, with experiences in some of the region’s most esoteric and unforgettable destinations. Start in Odessa, Ukraine, then discover inscrutable Russia, a melting pot of cultures in Turkey, and first-century Roman ruins in Georgia.

ALL INCLUSIVE ALL THE WAY

Roundtrip airfare • Top-shelf beverages • Elevated accommodations • Butler service for suites • In-room indulgence: Enjoy L’Occitane products • Self-care on us with yoga, mat Pilates and Spinning®️ • Enriching classes • A Complimentary adventure in select ports • Gourmet international dining • Prepaid gratuities

HEART OF THE BLACK SEA

Aug 4, 2021 / 9 Nights

World Navigator

Base Rates
Starting FROM $6,699 per person

*Government Taxes and Fees are additional.

Aug 04    Odessa, Ukraine    Depart: 8:00PM
Odessa, Ukraine

From catacombs to sunny beaches, Odessa holds an array of environments that appeal to any type of explorer. It is a city that balances the quaint with the extraordinary.

The port city of Odessa sits along the southern coast of Ukraine on the shores of the Black Sea. Founded by Russian empress Catherine the Great, the relatively new city contains modern history of its establishment dating back to the 14th century.

However, the settlement that existed in its stead in ancient times led to Odessa’s great diversity, influenced by the cultures of the Greeks, Tatars, and Turks. Steeped in such varying cultures, Odessa developed a unique aura that you can still feel today as you wander its countless, winding streets.

Deribasovskaya Street exudes a carnival vibe, brimming with shops and restaurants that bring a colorful energy to the city. Its cobblestone paths, now only open to pedestrians, pulls you into the city’s history and beckons you to find more treasures amidst its 19th century buildings and markets.

The iconic steps of the Potemkin Stairs, renowned from cinematic history, appear to stretch up into the horizon. But in reality, they lead to the port’s entrance where an unparalleled view of the Black Sea’s gulf greets the adventurer hungry for more than local cuisine.

Speaking of eating, a visit to Odessa is not complete without sampling the city’s fresh sea food fare. Dishes like bichki (bull fish) and Black Sea mussels in white wine, cream, and herbs entice you with their delectable aromas and mouthwatering flavors.

Aug 05    Cruising the Black Sea   
Cruising the Black Sea

Spend the day on the high seas pampering yourself at the spa or enjoying some time on deck. Mingle with your fellow explorers and swap stories of your exploits, making plans for new ones together once you get to shore.

Aug 06    Novorossiysk, Russia   Arrive: 8:00AM Depart: 6:00PM
Novorossiysk, Russia

The Port of Novorossiysk at Tsemes Bay greets travelers with both a city skyline and breathtaking mountains before they disembark on a journey to the past. The city of Novorossiysk in Russia has roots that date back to the Paleolithic era, giving visitors a chance to walk in the footsteps of prehistoric mankind.

An architectural combination of historic design and contemporary structures proves that this Black Sea city pays homage to the past without getting stuck in it. Monuments and memorials scattered throughout the city’s parks and plazas pay tribute to its history and offer explorers a glimpse into its past.

On the outskirts of Novorossiysk you will find picturesque landscapes, with views of the North Caucasus Mountains that expand further than the eye can see. If you venture into the mountain range, you will come across the enchanting Lake Abrau, the largest and purest lake — and vineyard — in the region. Here you can develop a taste for Russian sparkling wines at the historic Abrau-Durso winery.

Not far from there lies Durso Beach, a popular site for lounging among the stone shore and playing in the pristine waters. The surrounding view of cliffs dotted with green foliage makes for a great photo opportunity. While the beach is often bustling with life, its location feels more remote and off the beaten path.

Back at the port, the ship lights shining against the bay waters create a sparkling scene that mesmerizes even the most veteran explorers. There is no better sendoff than that.

Aug 07    Sochi, Russia   Arrive: 7:00AM OVERNIGHT
Sochi, Russia

Sochi has gained a reputation as the Russian Riviera, as it contains more villas, parks, palm trees, and yachts than the rest of the country. A walk among the palm trees of the Arboretum will make you believe you have somehow been transported to a tropical paradise. That’s because Sochi is the only city in Russia where you experience five climate zones.

The riches of the parks filled with magnolia and cypress take you back to nature and create a sense of peace. Out in Sochi National Park you can truly get away from the busyness of day-to-day life and surround yourself with the hush of the forest.

The quiet rush of small waterfalls as they flow into the lakes and stones below make the soundtrack of your journeys. Snowcapped peaks from the Western Caucasus mountain range form the backdrop of your adventures.

Along the outskirts of the city lie ancient ruins from Byzantine times. Stepping through the stones of Loo Temple and Godlik Fortress takes you to a past before the noise and bustle of city life ever existed. Although the trees and nature continue to grow around the remains of these structures, they have not been lost to time.

Sochi is alive and vibrant, rich in history, art, and culture. At every turn through the city there is something new to discover and immerse yourself in, whether it’s a shop full of local Russian wares or restaurants tantalizing you with delicious aromas. The blazing colors of the city at sunset will fill you with awe and wonder.

Aug 08    Sochi, Russia    Depart: 9:00PM
Sochi, Russia

Sochi has gained a reputation as the Russian Riviera, as it contains more villas, parks, palm trees, and yachts than the rest of the country. A walk among the palm trees of the Arboretum will make you believe you have somehow been transported to a tropical paradise. That’s because Sochi is the only city in Russia where you experience five climate zones.

The riches of the parks filled with magnolia and cypress take you back to nature and create a sense of peace. Out in Sochi National Park you can truly get away from the busyness of day-to-day life and surround yourself with the hush of the forest.

The quiet rush of small waterfalls as they flow into the lakes and stones below make the soundtrack of your journeys. Snowcapped peaks from the Western Caucasus mountain range form the backdrop of your adventures.

Along the outskirts of the city lie ancient ruins from Byzantine times. Stepping through the stones of Loo Temple and Godlik Fortress takes you to a past before the noise and bustle of city life ever existed. Although the trees and nature continue to grow around the remains of these structures, they have not been lost to time.

Sochi is alive and vibrant, rich in history, art, and culture. At every turn through the city there is something new to discover and immerse yourself in, whether it’s a shop full of local Russian wares or restaurants tantalizing you with delicious aromas. The blazing colors of the city at sunset will fill you with awe and wonder.

Aug 09    Batumi, Georgia   Arrive: 7:30AM Depart: 5:00PM
Batumi, Georgia

The city of Batumi contains the sprawling diversity of charming, historic towns to cosmopolitan waterfront promenades. In recent times, it has become known as the Mini Las Vegas of the Black Sea. Its big city feel comes alive with blazing, colorful lights along the night sky horizon coming from its spectacular and unique buildings.

A climb to the top of the 130-meter Alphabetic Tower rewards you with impressive views over the city and out to the Batumi Seaport. The nearly aerial view gives you a glimpse of the zones where the past and present meet within the city’s architecture and design. A sea of colorful rooftops makes for a splendid sight as you take in the breadth of Batumi.

Becoming absorbed in real Georgian life happens naturally as you wander the side streets and courtyards. Passing the locals as they stand on their apartment balconies and listening to the residents’ conversation as you make your way through the city makes it easy to immerse yourself in this world, becoming more than an outsider looking in.

Batumi’s old town district contains the quintessential look and feel visitors often associate with the 19th century. The narrow, cobblestone streets juxtaposed with modern-day vehicles invoke the sense of a city that lives in the present while keeping the memory of its past alive.

Grand architecture at Europe Square in this district brings to front of mind the question: What is Batumi’s story? There is much yet to discover.

Aug 10    Sinop, Turkey   Arrive: 2:00PM Depart: 10:00PM
Sinop, Turkey

With thousands of years of history dating back to ancient times, Sinop holds an array of ruins for the venturous traveler to explore. According to legend, the Amazons of mythology founded the port city of Sinop, named for their queen Sinova.

Lying on the southern coast of the Black Sea, this city resides on the Ince Burun isthmus linking Turkey’s mainland to the Boztepe Peninsula. On its southside lies a high mountain range covered in lush forest, locking it away from the Anatolian Plateau. Modern apartments and complexes also rise from the mountain grounds, giving way to the realization that Sinop is a city alive and in the present.

From the ancient citadel to Sinop Castle and Sinop Archaeological Museum, the city’s many historical sites give visitors a chance to imagine themselves into a time long past. Weathered stones tell the tales of a people who have come a long way.

The sight of Greek-style houses built into the mountains, dotted with trees scattered throughout, brings to front of mind the influence of other cultures in Turkey as it is known today. As you make your way between well-worn homes, shops, and restaurants, you may get a whiff of sweet Turkish treats like baklava or ekmek kadayifi, a bread pudding with Ottoman origins.

Sit for a spell in a local eatery to savor the flavors of Turkey’s most renowned dishes, like islama, a traditional favorite that combines flaky phyllo dough with chicken broth topped with shredded chicken or turkey, crushed walnuts, and butter.

Aug 11    Amasra, Turkey   Arrive: 9:00AM Depart: 5:00PM
Amasra, Turkey

As explorers make their way through the likes of Amasra Castle, a ninth-century church, and the archaeological museum, they can reach out and touch the past, just at their fingertips. The Black Sea port town of Amasra, located in the ancient region of Paghlagonia, holds centuries of artifacts and history to satiate the most curious of minds.

Its position straddling a peninsula between two bays made it an important strategic location throughout its history. An old Roman bridge closes the gap between Amasra and a rocky island, making it more remote than most other tourist attractions. Legends of the city tell story of a secret tunnel leading from Rabbit Island to a church once used as a monastic retreat.

Stepping out of the past and into the present, you will find yourself surrounded by crystal blue waters and evergreen mountains. Along the coast of the small village Kapisuyu lies a relatively remote beach where the pristine scenery of Turkey abounds. For a truly authentic dive into Amasra, you can mingle with the residents and hear their stories as you share the local fare.

Fresh seafood is never scarce in this seaside town. Plenty of restaurants offer a fresh, daily dish of fish by the portion. Adventurous foodies must sample the hamsi, anchovy, cooked in several different ways throughout the country. It is a local favorite and can be found in any Amasra restaurant. Unique, new flavors run wild across the palate as explorers get a real taste of Turkish cuisine.

Aug 12    Istanbul, Turkey   Arrive: 9:00AM OVERNIGHT
Istanbul, Turkey

Istanbul’s combination of religious history and vibrant, cultural influences make it a dream destination for the most experienced travelers. Throughout its history, many empires have ruled in Turkey. The influences of Roman, Egyptian, Byzantine, and more remain apparent in the city’s architecture, art, and traditions. Straddling the Bosphorous Strait, the narrow passage that joins the Black Sea and the Marmara Sea, Istanbul has connected trade and culture between Europe and Asia for millennia.

You will want to stop at the Grand Bazaar to get a true feel for the present-day culture of the city. Filled with merchants, artisans, and authentic wares, the bazaar provides a vibrant backdrop for a little holiday shopping. The rush of locals haggling back and forth to get the best prices will sweep you up in the energy of the people and make you want to join in.

For the traveler that wants an intimate experience with Istanbul’s traditions, a visit to a hamam, the famous Turkish baths, fits the criteria. The city has transformed the historically Roman baths into spa-like sites for the modern explorer’s needs. Structures crafted from shining marble give these baths a classic look and feel with contemporary amenities, bringing together the best of both past and present.

Some of the most beautiful architecture in Istanbul is found in the mosques. These sacred spaces filled with centuries of religious history inspire awe with their colorful paintings and intricate patterns throughout the interiors. Their grand appearances from the outside also create a striking view when roaming the bustling streets of the city.

Aug 13    Istanbul, Turkey   
Istanbul, Turkey

Istanbul’s combination of religious history and vibrant, cultural influences make it a dream destination for the most experienced travelers. Throughout its history, many empires have ruled in Turkey. The influences of Roman, Egyptian, Byzantine, and more remain apparent in the city’s architecture, art, and traditions. Straddling the Bosphorous Strait, the narrow passage that joins the Black Sea and the Marmara Sea, Istanbul has connected trade and culture between Europe and Asia for millennia.

You will want to stop at the Grand Bazaar to get a true feel for the present-day culture of the city. Filled with merchants, artisans, and authentic wares, the bazaar provides a vibrant backdrop for a little holiday shopping. The rush of locals haggling back and forth to get the best prices will sweep you up in the energy of the people and make you want to join in.

For the traveler that wants an intimate experience with Istanbul’s traditions, a visit to a hamam, the famous Turkish baths, fits the criteria. The city has transformed the historically Roman baths into spa-like sites for the modern explorer’s needs. Structures crafted from shining marble give these baths a classic look and feel with contemporary amenities, bringing together the best of both past and present.

Some of the most beautiful architecture in Istanbul is found in the mosques. These sacred spaces filled with centuries of religious history inspire awe with their colorful paintings and intricate patterns throughout the interiors. Their grand appearances from the outside also create a striking view when roaming the bustling streets of the city.

Heart Of The Black Sea

9 nights

Call your Travel Advisor or one of our Voyage Specialists at 1-844-44ATLAS (28527) for more information.
  • Departure Time
    8.00
  • Return Time
    8.00

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