Explore the Cradles of Civilisation with Cruise Express

Interior of the Blue Mosque (Sultanahmet Camii) in Istanbul, Turkey


Interior of the Blue Mosque (Sultanahmet Camii) in Istanbul, Turkey

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Whirling Dervishes, ancient cities and ruins dating back thousands of years will be the focus of a new cruise tour in the eastern Mediterranean next October, to be hosted by Cruise Express.

The guided, 25-night Escorted Voyage, Cradles of Civilisation, includes a cruise with Celebrity Cruises as well as a shore tour in every port. For bookings in ocean-view cabins or above, a Classic Beverage package covering selected beers, wines, spirits and cocktails is also included.

Cruise Express is also offering sneak previews of Celebrity Cruises’ ships in Melbourne and Sydney as part of special on-board lunch events in January and March 2016. These exclusive events enable Australians to sample life aboard a Celebrity Cruises vessel before booking a voyage.

The luxury tour departs Australia on 11 October 2016 and begins with an eight-night land tour through Turkey, starting amongst the ancient lands of Cappadocia where homes are carved into fairytale, cone-shaped rocks. After staying in a cave hotel, guests will experience a dawn hot air balloon ride over the region, explore ruins of temples and visit the town of Konya – home of the famous Whirling Dervishes.

Guests can walk the fabled sands of Anzac Cove on the Gallipoli Peninsula before arriving in ancient Istanbul for a tour of the Old City with its ornate Blue Mosque and bustling Grand Bazaar. The bazaar is one of the biggest and oldest markets in the world, with 61 covered streets and 3000 shops.

From Istanbul, guests will board Celebrity Constellation for a 12-night Eastern Mediterranean cruise to Rome. Six shore tours are included in the package, including a visit to the 5th Century ruins of Greek temples, theatres and stadiums on the olive grove island of Rhodes. From the Turkish port of Kusadasi, guests will visit the house where the Virgin Mary is believed to have lived out her life. In Malta, an included tour will take passengers to the fortified old city of Mdina which dates back to 4000 BC. The tour ends with two nights in Rome including a tour of the Vatican and the Eternal City’s other world-famous landmarks.

Including flights from Australia, the 25-night Cradles of Civilisation tour is available from $9989 per person, twin-share, in an inside cabin. Passengers booking in an ocean-view cabin or above from $10,989 per person, twin-share, will also receive a Classic Beverage Package aboard Celebrity Constellation including selected beer, wine, spirits and cocktails.

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