B E   A   P A R T   O F   H I S T O R Y

 I T I N E R A R Y  :::::::

November 10-20, 2021

5 Star-Rated, All-Inclusive, Educational 3 Continent Cruise/Tour



EUROPE       ASIA       AFRICA  
An epic 12-Day, Three-Continent, Mediterranean cruise (7 days)
on the
"Celestyal Crystal" ship
that includes
Greece, Israel, Turkey & Egypt

1. Athens >>

2. At sea

3. Alexandria

4. Cairo

5. Jerusalem

6. Cyprus
7. Rhodes
8. Ephesus

Freeman Institute Tours (FIT)


FIT is also covering the extra cost for port taxes, beverages on board and shore excursion at these stops:

Jerusalem, Cairo, Alexandria, Rhodes, and Ephesus.


FIT is adding a 4-day land adventure in Northern/Southern Greece

Thessaloniki, Berea, Philippi, Athens, Corinth, Acropolis, Mar's Hill and much more...


We're also covering the travel R/T in-Greece air & bus travel cost between Athens & Thessaloniki

Plus, we're staying in 5-star hotels:

Athens and Thessaloniki


People who are interested in connecting the history, archaeology, geography and topography
of Greece, Egypt, Israel and Turkey to their personal understanding of Biblical times.

It's time.

See the smiles?  Notice the diversity?  Can you feel the camaraderie, the mischief and the sense of adventure?

This is a Freeman Institute tour.

Our 2018 merry band of adventurers in Ephesus (Turkey)


Join Dr. Freeman on Mars Hill as he provides a quick panoramic view of the Acropolis, Athens and more...

Call Dr. Freeman right now about the next Greece cruise/tour...cell: 410-991-9718...email: greatworkshops@gmail.com




It's Time. 


E X E C U T I V E   O V E R V I E W

Ever seen a tour group with 2 - 6 busloads of dazed people
with headsets on.....hardly even talking with each other?
No fun at all.   Kind of like herding cats.


We lead tours only in late Fall and/or early Spring each year. Ask why.

We sold out all the seats on the last tour quite rapidly. First come, first served.

Email me

   Are you in?  Or do you know of anyone who might be interested in going on an 11-day cruise/tour?

   If so, please share this website with the right people. Watch the two videos below...

  Review the itinerary below: Alexandria, Cairo, Jerusalem, Athens, Corinth, Thessaloniki, Philippi, Berea, Ephesus, Cyprus, Rhodes and much more...

   Please forward this website to the right people.

   The cost and what is included in the trip will be listed below. Plus, we will email you a document responding to FAQs.


Email for info...and to be put on the list of people
interested in a future Greece and/or Israel trip.

  Many of our seasoned travelers from previous trips to Israel have commented this this is the best group tour they have ever experienced...anywhere. We work hard to make this a reality for each group. Review some photographs from past trips on social media (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter) -- #FreemanInstituteTours

  We are planning some new experiences this year. Going to these countries with The Freeman Institute® Tours is not a vacation, nor a luxury, but an investment that will pay spiritual dividends for the rest of your life. You will never read the Bible the same way.

   This ain't my first rodeo...


Successful Entrepreneur/Author, Myron Golden
VIDEO (1:42) -- "People wonder whether or not it is safe..."


T H E   T E A M
(tour guides, hotels, transportation, et al)

THE TEAM: Joel and Shirley

T O U R   L E A D E R
Joel A. Freeman, Ph.D.

   GUIDES -- Dynamic. English-speaking. Officially trained and registered tour guides will be providing the direction for the entire tour. Come on this trip with a lot of questions, because the guides possess a deep/wide reservoir of historical, biblical and geographical knowledge. You will learn much from them on this trip.
  Dr. Joel Freeman will help to fill in with some added geographical, biblical, historical, and topographical information, along with spiritual application.

   Basketball Metaphor: Our guides do the play-by-play. Joel provides the color commentary.

   "We welcome you to the promise of a life-changing experience. Get ready for the next trip."
                                                                                                             -- Joel A. Freeman

  During our tour we will explore the fascinating monuments made by man and nature over the centuries.

  A trip to Greece, Egypt, Israel and Turkey is safe, affordable, and transforming. These are mentioned in the Biblical story and will connect you with the roots of your faith in a way that is truly life-changing. You’ll never be the same.


   OCTOBER: Pastor's Appreciation Month -- Give the gift of a trip to your pastor and spouse. I like to tell people that tour -- following the steps of Paul, Timothy, Luke, John and Jesus -- is almost like two semesters of intensive Bible School training.

   There's nothing quite like seeing what is being read in the Scriptures. And this trip will make the Bible come alive like nothing else can.

   If you are a member of a congregation, drop the hint with a few people to see if the idea gathers some traction. Let us know how we can help...


  We believe that people who travel to this part of the world:

  • Are in search of a deeper understanding of their faith -- physically, spiritually & emotionally.
  • Desire to add color & depth to the faith story that has already shaped their lives.
  • Long to see, touch, & encounter real places & real people that bring real meaning to the Bible.

   We believe that groups (large or small) that travel together:

  • Gain spiritual enrichment in learning together “on site” as they follow in the steps of Paul, John, Timothy, Luke and Jesus.
  • Build community by strengthening bonds among members, bringing together generations, and reaching out to non-members.

Part of our 2016 merry band of adventures at the ancient ruins of Ephesus

W A T C H   V I D E O S

Janice Holsonbake
VIDEO (1:24) -- "I generally do not like taking group tours..."

Theater of Ephesus (video 1:20) where Paul preached -- Acts 19: 23-41

"This is something everybody should experience."
-- Bobbie Williams (NFL Ravens Champion)

"I took a tour to with Joel Freeman in 2014 and our time was an experience beyond my wildest dreams.  Joel orchestrated a tremendous experience for our group which included me -- a former NFL chaplain -- and one of our Super Bowl winning players and his family.  If you're a professional athlete, Joel understands the unique travel needs you and your family will have.  We had top tier accommodations all the way!  Thanks Joel for a life-changing experience."
                                                -- Rod Hairston, NFL Chaplain (retired), Baltimore Ravens


Exhilarating. Exhausting. Educational.

Our merry band of adventurers on Mars Hill in Athens (2016)


"This was my first group trip and it was a great experience." -- Angie

"I was overwhelmed, awestruck, humbled, and inspired -- all at the same time.
The Bible comes alive as you read it. " -- Bill

"Thanks for a great trip. We really enjoyed being with your group. Everyone was really friendly and good to be with. We are home now and catching up on our naps.  Keep us tuned in to your future trips. Thanks again for your effort in making the trip worthwhile." -- Oscar


"The 2012 trip was conducted with a great deal of thought and planning that far exceeding my expectations. I am still baffled of how well this trip went. I am even getting “goose bumps” while I am typing this. For the price that I paid I received way more that it was worth. All of the sites were my favorite because they had their own story which was fascinating and breathtaking to me. I absolutely hated group trips before this one because of past experiences but knowing Joel, trusting his judgment and embracing his friendship I took the challenge and loved every moment of the trip and group that I was so honored to be with during this trip. Thank you Joel Freeman from the bottom of my heart."  -- Marcus

Light in a shell on a table in a restaurant on the water's edge

"Thank you for the wonderful trip. Prior to going on the trip I did not know exactly what to expect. I suppose I thought it would be like other vacations we have taken to other parts of the world. It was not at all anything like any other trip I have taken. It was a surreal trip into all those Bible stories I learned as a child. It helped me to put them into a historical sequence instead of individual stories.  It has inspired me to be sure my Grandchildren learn all of these Bible stories as well.  I have told them  to include at least one Bible story to the bed time stories we read when they spend the night. All in all it was a wonderful experience and I love that we had great leaders we could count upon.  On your trip I felt I was able to sit where it made me comfortable and I could talk to whom I pleased and I could get to know people as I wished.  I would definitely recommend this trip to my friends.  It was the most unique vacation I have ever taken." -- Sue

"We had a wonderful experience! We are so glad that our friends invited us to take this trip. Thank you for all you did to make this trip a success. We truly enjoyed meeting and interacting with him. We are enjoying reviewing all the photos we took (1,000+). I am annotating each one. It will take me several more days (weeks?) to get it all done, but worth the effort as I am happily re-living the trip while doing it." -- Jim and Rita

"Kudos for creating our superb Discovery Tour! Joel, thanks to your attention to detail and hands-on approach. Our tour was a rare in-depth spiritual journey -- plus a comprehensive view of the past, present and future. We didn't just visit; we brought the meaning of the Bible home with us. Thanks again for the journey of a lifetime." -- Terry and Carolyn

Cruise ship tied up at the dock

"An unforgettable experience. It's the trip of a lifetime and so much more than I expected. The sites transported me to events of thousands years past -- the Old Testament through the New Testament. It's all about God. Beauty, history, landscape and culture will draw me back one day, but as I wait, I will share what I learned with my own beloved country. And, I will hope that it draws you to visit one day soon." -- Miriam

Joel & Shirley Freeman in Corinth, Greece -- overlooking the Ionian Sea


What Motivates Us to Lead All-Inclusive Educational Tours?

  It takes an inordinate amount of time, energy & “brain-damage” to put together a group trips and cruises to Greece, Egypt, Israel, Turkey and the surrounding regions. Every traveler has legitimate questions and needs and we try to anticipate as many in advance as possible. Some issues are more detailed than others.

  The process starts about 10-11 months prior to each trip. And there are endless discussions with tour operators, our travel agent and guides. We are always searching for the best pricing, coupled with the most excellent hotels, food and customer service. One could be exhausted before the tour even starts in Greece.

  So, why do we bother leading educational tours/cruises? Good question. We do not even have to hesitate with our response.

  - It’s because of the impact each trip has on the lives of every person who takes the journey. We get the joy of watching the decision-making process every person goes through before they sign on to such an adventure.

  - It’s seeing the excited looks on people’s faces when they learn the behind-the-scenes historical backdrop to many sites throughout the region.

  - It’s knowing that each person who has experienced Greece, Egypt, Israel and Turkey will now not only “read” the Bible, but they will be “seeing” what they are reading.

  - It’s the testimonials we receive from people, months after they have taken a trip with us.

   We put a lot of thought into developing a trip that most of the other larger tour groups are not able to visit. We welcome you to be a part of the next trip. It's going to be an unforgettable adventure!

King Tut

What's so Different About this Trip?

  There are many options when it comes to traveling to Greece, Egypt, Israel and Turkey.
Our tours are different.

  1.   We keep the numbers small, which makes us much more nimble and we connect much better as a group than groups with, let's say, 2-5 tour buses.

  2.   We are very experienced. Each guide we use knows the land from various disciplines -- geographical, topographical, archaeological, Scriptural, historical, etc. They are not jaded. They approach each tour with a great passion that you can feel -- as if it was their first tour group.

  3.   We plan surprises every trip.

  4.  We have a lot of fun! Each group develops its own personality. When people travel together excellent  friendships, camaraderie and fond memories emerge.

  5.   If we happen to have extra time, we even throw in an extra previously unplanned site, if our group is willing and able.

Greek Harbor

   Make contact  as soon as possible so that your spot on the trip will be secured for you. First come, first served. Every person who has been on this trip tells us that we should have charged more for the trip. But we are committed to keeping the pricing as inexpensive as possible -- at the same time never skimping on the quality of hotels, food, travel & customer service."   

                                                            -- 100,000 Blessings, Joel & Shirley -- Email

2021 Trip Theme
Following the Footsteps of Paul, Timothy, Luke, John & Jesus


Here is an overview of the itinerary for this upcoming memorable 2020 trip to Greece, Israel, Egypt, and Turkey:

I T I N E R A R Y:

Day 1 (Nov 10): Fly from JFK Airport to Thessaloniki, Greece (overnight).

Day 2 (Nov 11): We meet Yiannis (our incredible tour operator) and Angeliki (our wonderful Greek tour guide). Thessalonica -- The trip will start with your arrival in Thessaloniki airport where we will meet and transfer you to your hotel. Day of leisure, dinner and overnight Thessalonica.

Day 3 (Nov 12): Thessaloniki / Philippi / Kavala / Thessaloniki -- Breakfast and trip to Philippi, the town where Paul delivered his first sermon in Europe, sowing the seeds of Christianity. “And from there (He went) to Philippi, which is the leading city of the district of Macedonia and a Roman Colony. We remained in this city some days…” (Acts 16:11-12). Paul arrived here with Silas and Luke on the winter of AD 49 to AD50. There the first Christian baptism was performed, of a woman named Lydia. Although they were prosecuted and arrested, they received God’s help to escape from prison (Acts 16: 25-26) where there was the conversion of the jailer (Acts 16: 31). We will visit the Roman Theatre, probable site of the prison where Paul and Silas were arrested. We will continue towards the city of Kavala, the ancient city of Neapolis (Acts 16:11) where Paul landed with his disciples, Timothy and Silas. It was later renamed Christoupolis, meaning city of Christ, because it was the first European city to accept Christianity. We will visit the Roman Aqueduct and the ruins of the Acropolis. Dinner and overnight in Thessaloniki.

Day 4 (Nov 13) : Thessaloniki city tour / Veria (Berea) / Vergina / Athens -- After breakfast the trip continues with exploring the city of Thessaloniki, where Paul preached the gospel in the second and third missionary journey. For the early Christians of this city he wrote epistles “To the Thessalonians.”. We will visit the Cathedral of St. Demetrius, the Protector Saint of the city, the Agora, the Church of Saint Sofia, the White Tower and the Byzantine fortress of the city, the triumphal Arch of Galerius starting at the Via Egnatia, once a strategic artery of the Roman Empire. Next stop will be Veria (Berea), another town evangelized by Paul (Acts 17: 10-14). When Saint Paul visited this town in AD50, he came across a more “noble” Jewish community where he preached and created an important Church. This is where Paul met Sopatros (or Sosipatros), who would later become a valuable comrade who followed him on his return journey to Asia. We will visit the ancient synagogue where we will see the Byzantine mosaic in the monument commemorating his preaching. Then we will head to Vergina, the legendary burial site of the Macedonian kings. This place is considered as a World Heritage Site, also known as the Royal Tombs and houses the tomb of King Philip II, father of Alexander the Great. Depart for Athens for dinner and overnight.



Day 5 (Nov 14): Athens / Corinth / Embarkation -- After breakfast we will go on a city tour to explore the city of Athens, including the Agora of Athens (Acts 17:16-34). Athens is one of the most glorious cities in the world and the cradle of western civilization as we know it today. We will visit the main points of interest in the city: The Acropolis, the Parthenon and Mars’ Hill (Areopagus) where Paul preached the truth to the Gentile Nation. After that, we will head toward ancient Corinth (Acts 18.1-18). It was in ancient Corinth where Paul came and worked, established a thriving church and writing two of the epistles, which are now part of the New Testament. We will see all the sites that are associated with his ministry: The Agora, the Temple of Apollo, the roman Odeon, the Bema and Gallio’s seat, the pillars, stairs, and the place of public worship, where Paul preached. All these visits will certainly enhance the understanding of Corinthians I and II. Before ending the tour and return to Athens, we will pass by the ancient Greek port of Cenchrea (Acts 18:18) where Paul was during his second missionary journey and the ruin of the early Christian 5th Century basilica.       Return to Piraeus for embarkation on the Cruise Ship.

Our 2016 merry band of adventurers in Corinth (2/3 of our group)


Near the Bema Seat in Corinth

Day 6 (Nov 8): At Sea --  Dinner and overnight on board.

Day 7 (Nov 15): Alexandria (Egypt) / Port Said Egypt -- Disembark in Alexandria, join your included tour and cross the desert to Cairo to admire the only remaining intact Wonder of the Ancient World, the Pyramids of Giza. Continue down the valley to gaze at the guardian of this mortuary complex, the mighty Sphinx. After lunch, visit the National Archaeological Museum and acquaint yourself with the treasures of ancient Egypt, spanning a period of over 50 centuries, before re-joining the ship in Port Said.      Return to the ship for dinner and overnight.


DAY 8 (Nov 16): Ashdod (Israel) -- Ashdod is the jumping off point for some of Israel’s most iconic sites. Full day tour from the port of Ashdod will take you to the holy city of Jerusalem where you will visit the Mount of Olives, the Church of Gethsemane and in the old city, the Church of the Holy Sepulcher and the Wailing Wall.      Return to the ship for dinner and overnight.

Day 9 (Nov 17): Cyprus (Limassol)--


  The busy beach front town of Limassol is the gateway to the once-thriving city-state of Curium, dating to the 2nd century BC, an exquisite Greco-Roman amphitheater at its heart. Alternatively, the UNESCO- protected archeological site of Paphos, famous for its Roman mosaics, is an easy day trip, as are the forested Troodos mountains. Take an optional tour and visit Curium which was an important city-kingdom founded by the Greeks in the 14th century BC. Discover the beautifully preserved Greco-Roman theatre, with spectacular views over the sea and the House of Efstolios, with intricate mosaic floors from the 5th century AD. Next, it’s into the hills to the wine-growing village of Omodos to visit the Monastery of the Holy Cross in the village square, see a medieval wine press and enjoy a tasting at a local winery in Limassol.     Return to the ship for dinner and overnight.


 Map Of Greece and Surrounding Region

Day 10 (Nov 18): Rhodes (Greece) -- Our included tour begins with the Acropolis of Lindos, 55 km (40 miles) from the city of Rhodes, to see the graceful Temple of Athena, built in 300 B.C. Back in the old city of Rhodes, you will walk through D’Amboise Gate and along the perfectly preserved Street of the Knights to discover the medieval residence of each order of the Knights of St John, still bearing the original crests.    Return to the ship for dinner and overnight.


DAY 11 (Nov 19): Kusadasi (Turkey) (B/L/D)

Visit (included tour) the archaeological site of ancient Ephesus, one of the largest open air museums in the world. See incredible relics of the Hellenistic, Roman and early Christian eras. Discover the Agora, the Odeon, the   Library of Celsus and the beautifully preserved marble- paved main Street of Kouretes.     Return to the ship for dinner and overnight.


DAY 12 (Nov 20): Piraeus Port / Athens Airport -- After breakfast and according to the schedule of your return flight you will be taken to the airport of Athens leaving with great memories from your "Steps of Paul, Timothy, Luke, John and Jesus" trip.



   We fly home, a little older and wiser. And with a greater desire to study the Bible -- knowing that now the Scriptures will jump alive like never before as we study about places we have actually visited. Plus you will now have some new "traveling buddies" you will want to keep in touch with on Facebook and Instagram! ------ #FreemanInstituteTours


   WHAT YOU CAN BRING WITH YOU ON THIS TRIP: Many of us will meet as strangers at the beginning of the trip and will part at the end of the trip as friends. Joel, our guides, the bus driver and other helpers will supply excellent customer service, clear communication, smiles...and hugs if necessary.

   There are unpredictable aspects to traveling abroad. And travel to other countries with others we did not previously know can be quite stressful for some travelers and an adventure for other travelers.

   It's all about the curiosity-driven life. We hope you pack your "adventurous spirit" for your tour! You will have a great time on this trip if you bring along your great attitude, a sense of humor and an adventurous spirit.


"An adventure is only an inconvenience rightly considered.
An inconvenience is an adventure wrongly considered
." --
G.K Chesterton


~   O V E R V I E W   O F   T R I P   ~

Step back in time...the Ancient Areopagus, Mars Hill -- late 1800s

Ephesus -- 1836


    Why do we require an up-front deposit? In order for us to get the flight and ground travel/hotel costs, we actually have to provide advance guarantee to airlines that all of the seats will be purchased and to the hotels and bus company we must guarantee that all of the food, ground travel, park, museum, and hotel costs are going to be covered. This is a big responsibility.

   That's why we need an up-front deposit from each person, along with the payment schedule you will see below. The payment schedule is for your budgeting convenience. If you want to pay more at any time, you can do so and we will keep a record of all payments. We will place all of the funds for this trip in a separate account and will release funds when required to do so by the airlines, hotels and bus company.

   With rising fuel costs and taxes we have fought hard to keep the pricing as low as possible. You may find moderately less expensive trips to Greece, but when you compare the quality of the hotels, the food, the specialized customer service, and some of the unique experiences we provide on this trip -- you will realize that our price is a bargain.



   The total cost of the Greece cruise/tour is $5,485. What do you receive? Take a look below at what is included and what's not included for a full picture. Once you see all that is included, there will no question. We have put together an epic tour.
         Athens -- staying at luxurious Divani Acropolis Hotel -- 1 nights
-- staying at luxurious Hotel Met -- 2 nights
         Cruise -- Food and lodging on ship -- 6 nights

Divani Acropolis, Athens



F L I G H T     I T I N E R A R Y

to be announced

12-Day Tour

  1.  INTERNATIONAL AIRLINE TICKETS (We are flying into Thessaloniki):

    Departing November 10th, 2021  from JFK Airport (NY) on Airline
    : Flight Itinerary -- to be announced.

    Returning on November 20th, 2021  from Athens on Airline: Flight Itinerary to be announced.


  2.       Each traveler is responsible to get to JFK International Airport. We will supply a list of all travelers well in advance so that you can connect with other travelers in your region. Perhaps some who live in the same region will use a van and leave it at the JFK Airport in long-term parking (online payment for long-term parking at airports is always cheaper). Flight times are always subject to change.

    : The airline allows one free checked bag (up to 50 pounds...23kg...verify this for yourself prior to the trip) and one small carry-on. Please weigh your bag to make sure that it does not weigh over 50 pounds. You will be responsible for any cost charged by Delta for excess weight or additional luggage.


  3. PRICE: $5,485 per person:

    (This tour should actually be priced at around $6,500. But we have worked hard to keep the price as low as possible)

    What's included or not included in the cost...$5,485?  (Checks payable to: Freeman Institute, Box 305, Gambrills, MD 21054)


    1. Non-stop, R/T air travel from JFK to Athens and back (includes tax & fuel surcharges)
    One way flight from Athens to Thessaloniki and bus travel in return with all taxes included and 1 check in bag (55 pounds)
    3. All ground travel (includes cost of driver and A/C tour bus with WiFi)
    4. Five star hotel rooms and food (3 nights in hotel...includes breakfast/dinner)
               - Thessaloniki (2 nights) -- Hotel Met
               - Athens (1 night) -- Hotel Divani Acropolis
    5. Greek registered, English-speaking tour guides for entire trip
            - Athens
            - Corinth
            - Alexandria
            - Cairo
            - Rhodes
            - Jerusalem

    6. Entrance fees to all parks and museums as per itinerary
         - Athens
            - Corinth
            - Jerusalem
            - Rhodes
            - Egypt

    7. Double occupancy in hotel room (see single occupancy below)
    PLUS: We are paying for all Shore excursions (except for Cyprus)
              - Ephesus (Turkey)
              - Jerusalem (Israel)
              - Rhodes
              - Alexandria (Egypt)
              - Cairo (Egypt)


    1. Cabin accommodation based on Standard Outside Cabins with window (double occupancy)
    Full board (Breakfast – Lunch –Dinner)
    3. All inclusive drinks package
    4. Shore excursions on sharing basis (Ephesus & Rhodes & Alexandria)
    5. Ancient Ephesus through the Ages – Hellenistic/ Roman
    6. Medieval tour – Acropolis of Lindos and the Citadel of the Knights
    7. Full day Tour in Israel arranged by you as per your itinerary
    Classical Cairo (Full day + Lunch)   
    Entertainment on cruise
    10. Port charges, security and other services
    Tipping for every aspect of the cruise (guides, waiters, cabin cleaning, etc.)
    Services of Professional, English Speaking Assistant on the cruise on Private Basis
    Turkish Visa needed for visiting Ephesus (done on ship…offshore excursion in Turkey)

       1. Every cruise has optional shore excursion costs. And this cruise is no different. We have included
           all shore excursions for you,
    except for Cypress.
    For those who have taken cruises before, you know that this is a huge benefit.
           The rate quoted for shore excursions is for excursions when we stop at the various islands.

       2. Tips -- For tour guides, bus drivers, hotel staff, or our assistant on cruise.
       3. The cost of obtaining a US Passport, meals or beverages other than specified, travel insurance,
           items of personal nature
    (laundry, telephone calls, any extra extra tips you want to give, etc.)
       5. Supplement for single occupancy hotel room and cruise cabin ($1,290 extra...includes outside cruise cabin with ocean view)
       6. Anything not stated in the "Included" section above.

    Make checks out to: Freeman Institute, Box 305, Gambrills, MD 21054.



    $1,000 deposit per person (minimum $500 deposit allowed) is due ASAP. Your only financial risk on the deposit: $100.00 of the deposit per person is a non-refundable administrative fee...unless you can find people to fill your seat(s).  (Payment is to The Freeman Institute...by check or cash. If you want to pay with credit card, 3% will be added to cover processing fee.)

    We are keeping this trip to 45 travelers because it makes for a much better opportunity for everyone to get the most out of the trip. We want to retain a more intimate family atmosphere that is missed when more than one bus is utilized. If you know of people who might be interested in traveling on this trip, please send them to this website. In the unlikely event of the number of passengers falling below 10 travelers, the airfare may increase, as group pricing will no longer apply. We have set aside enough seats with the airline by placing a down payment for each ticket (your ticket). But once ticketing is finalized (in July) and the full price is paid, your flight ticket is non-refundable and non-changeable.

    : October is nice season of the year (Fall), with very comfortable weather. That's one of the main reasons we chose this time of year for our trip to Greece and the surrounding region. Temperature in Athens is usually between 76 to 83 degrees Fahrenheit. Modern, large-windowed air-conditioned/heated motor coaches -- designed for sight-seeing -- will be used for all ground travel in Greece.

    : Think layers. You will definitely want to bring a fleece or jacket. Think about the wind while cruising on the Mediterranean Sea. It will be chilly in the morning on land when you start out, then warm up to short sleeves weather, and then cool off again in the evening. On some of the days you may want a long t-shirt and light jacket, while on other days a short sleeve T-shirt will do. So, bring a good range of generally light clothes, with comfortable walking shoes. There will be no need for any fancy clothes.

    The evening dinners will be in very nice open seating dining rooms, with an incredible choice of food to fill your own plate. This is not a fashion competition. Casual wear (jeans, khakis) is appropriate at all times. You may want to pack a swimming suit for the hotel/cruise ship swimming pools. Remember that your checked suitcase needs to be under 50 pounds, so pack accordingly. Some airlines charge for an extra checked bag and/or an overweight bag.


    Photo copies of valid United States passports for all passengers must be received by July 25th, 2021 for a ticket to be issued for that passenger. If you do not have a valid US passport, please start that process right away at your local Post Office. We will notify you of the best address to mail a photocopy of the first page -- in plenty of time to share the info with the airline.
    : The expiration date on any passport must be no earlier than June 8th, 2022.

    TURKISH VISA: We will be making a stop at Ephesus (Turkey) during the cruise portion of the trip. Our tour operator is facilitating the Visa process.

    HEALTH REGULATIONS: No vaccinations are required. Water is safe to drink, but most people drink bottled water. You will always be reminded to bring bottled water when walking any distance.


  6. PAYMENT SCHEDULE (You can make payments any time you want...but this is a suggestion):
    -- ASAP: Deposit of $1,000.00 per person to guarantee your seat on the plane. Checks can be made out to: The Freeman Institute, Box 305, Gambrills, MD 21054.

    Deposit of $1,000 is preferred ($500 is required). This is a low-risk deposit. ($100 per person is a non-refundable administrative fee for canceling...up to 90 days before departure. But if you have to cancel up to 90 days prior to the trip, they are even willing to waive the $100 admin fee if you can find people to replace the exact number of seats you are giving up.)

     -- As soon as possible: If deposited only $500, you must have another amount of $500 per person.
     -- Set your own payment pace: Send in whatever you can and we will account for it.
     -- August 10th, 2021 (100 days prior to trip): You must have the final amount per person.
                   -- Total: $5,485.00 per person

    NOTE: I have to submit a final list of passengers to the airline by August 10th, 2020.

    The payment schedule mentioned above is designed to make it easier for some travelers to better afford the trip. Knowing the payment schedule in advance, many can place the funds in an envelope every month so that there are no surprises when the payments are due.

    Six  main elements make up this trip:
    1. R/T air travel
    2. Ground travel (tour bus),
    3. Hotel rooms and food (breakfast/dinner)
    4. Greek registered tour guide
    5. Entrance fees to parks and museums
    6. Cruise

    You are given one unified price, but we have to address all five aspects separately behind the scenes if anyone needs to cancel.

    IMPORTANT: In case of cancellations, the following penalties apply:

    CANCELLATIONS: In the event of cancellation from registration date to 90 days before departure, there is a $100 per person non-refundable administrative fee...unless you can fill your seat(s).
    Thereafter the following charges apply:
    * 89-50 days prior to departure the charge is 50% of total cost.
    * 49 days prior to departure the cancellation penalty of 100% of the total cost of the tour will be charged. No refunds whatsoever! Trip cancellation insurance is suggested.
    * No shows or cancellation after date of departure will receive no refunds.

    If cancellation is due to health or illness in the immediate family of the traveler, and can be supported by a Doctor's Certificate, this may be waived. Air travel cancellation insurance is recommended. While is is not required, if you can find a replacement for your seat(s) it would be much appreciated.

    ITINERARY CHANGES: Changes -- deviations from the main flight itinerary are not recommended. Why? We are required to have a certain number of travelers booked before the airlines will grant us the group discounted rate. Any deviations must be requested in writing via
    EMAIL. If you leave early or return individually and not with the group there is a $100 surcharge plus an additional airfare differential for the deviation. Group fares generally do not permit upgrades to first class. But sometimes they will open up for a limited number who wish to use their frequent flier miles. Any passengers wishing to upgrade may arrange their own airfare. An airline credit of $1,000 off the total cost of the trip will be given to those passengers who wish to make their own airline bookings. It is requested that they seek to make the arrangements as close as possible to the itinerary for this trip. Any additional ground travel arrangements and cost to catch up with the rest of the group or to leave early/later will be each traveler's responsibility.

    Passport fees; phone calls; valet/laundry service; overweight or excess baggage on airplane; and all other items that are strictly personal in nature; flight insurance (highly recommended); any beverage (please note that the custom abroad is to include coffee or tea with breakfast only); it is an extra charge when served mineral water, sodas, wine or liquor; expenses within the USA or Canada; and tips.
       TIPS:  This is an important part of the trip. Tips are a tangible way of saying "thank you." We suggest that you bring $100 in $1 bills for tips throughout the trip. (Also, a minimum $100 tip per traveler for our registered Greek guides, is customary. Our tour guide works very hard before and during the trip to make it a stress-free experience for you. Plus, you will learn much from our tour guide and will feel honored to give him such a tip. View the tip guide below and plan ahead. The tip for our tour guide and the bus driver will be collected at the end of the trip.)
          Tipping Guide:
              Bus Driver: $5.00 per person per day
                Restaurant Wait Staff: $1.50 per person
                  Hotel Porter: 50 cents per bag per person
                    Hotel Room Maid: $1.00 per person per day
                      Any Additional Local Guides: $2.00 per person per day

    PASSENGER RESPONSIBILITY: The Freeman Institute, Joel Freeman, and our tour operator accept no responsibility for expense on any personal purchases made while overseas. Any personal purchases are the full responsibility of each passenger.

    MOBILE PHONE: It is important that we have one mobile phone for every 3-4 travelers. Sometimes we are shopping in a crowded market for a couple of hours, with a designated meeting time and place set up in advance. If someone gets lost or disoriented, it is always good to know that we can call their cell to help guide them back to the rest of the group. Call your cell provider to determine the best way to upgrade your current cell phone for this international trip. Please let us know if you are willing and able to bring your cell. By the way, T-Mobile charges only $0.2/min charge on any call...a serious benefit with no international surcharge (check to make sure it is still their policy).

    SINGLE or DOUBLE OCCUPANCY (Hotel): If you are a person traveling alone on this trip, you need to realize that prices mentioned for this trip are based upon double occupancy hotel rooms. Because of the 7-day cruise (includes outside cabins), there is an extra charge for one person staying in a room ($1,290). If you are traveling alone you may want to reach out to friends and family to see if there is someone you know who is willing and able to travel with you on this trip. That way you will be staying in a double occupancy room (covered by the basic cost of the trip) with someone you know.

    ** IMPORTANT: From 1st January 2018 the Hellenic National Tourism Organization has decided to impose the resident city fee. This tax must be paid by the guest directly to the hotel before the end of the stay. Projection is that for the hotels nights, the tax will be Euro 4 per room per night.


    IMPORTANT: It's ultimately your choice. But we highly recommend taking out comprehensive travel insurance, which should cover emergency evacuation, cancellation, delay, illness, loss of damage to personal belongings and luggage etc. It is relatively inexpensive. Check for yourself. You will want to purchase trip insurance as soon as possible, prior to the trip, which will cover all costs (flight, hotels, ground travel, etc.). Allow me to introduce you to two credible options for you to consider and compare -- Trip Insurance Consultants and Travel Insured:

    CHOICE #1: Travel Insurance Consultants creates a lot of policies for short term missions teams, long term missionaries and others throughout the world. The main reason I like this company is because -- as brokers -- they have access to pretty much any travel insurance company out there. Lynette Rempel (
    800-576-2674 x105) or Craig (x101) will listen to your needs and then will be able to provide you with the best insurance policy. Plus, if you need to access the insurance, they will make sure you are taken care of.

    CHOICE #2: Travel Insured -- enter all of the information and you will be given a quote.


    1.                2.  Buy travel protection from Travel Insured International


    Joel A. Freeman: 410-991-9718 / EMAIL -- The Freeman Institute, Box 305, Gambrills, MD 21054.

  10. PEOPLE WITH A DISABILITY (requiring a wheelchair):
    HONEST TALK -- This tour includes a lot of up and down walking, especially where there are streets made of uneven pavement or stony paths. Many of the places we visit -- especially in and around Athens, Ephesus, Jerusalem, Cairo, and Corinth -- are not generally considered to be wheel-chair-friendly sites. The day excursion trips during the cruise are not always best for walking, with a lot of up and down terrain in Ephesus, Cyprus, Rhodes and some other islands.

    The rule of thumb is that if you need to request a wheelchair at the airport to get to your gate, this tour is probably not for you. However, if you are willing to pay for a care-giver (perhaps a friend who is willing and able to push your wheelchair throughout the tour) to come along to take care of your physical needs, we encourage you to come.

    On the tour we will alert you in advance when we are approaching a site that is not wheel-chair-friendly. At those times you can stay on the bus...meeting the rest of the group on the other side.

  NOTE: Before every trip...I (Joel) always get calls from nervous travelers who have just seen images of a car/bus bombing or a fiery protest on CNN or Fox. I do not want to downplay any of these images or fears, but there always seem to be situations covered by the press prior to every trip. We will be going on this trip unless the US Department of State officially states that it is not safe for US Citizens to travel to the scheduled destinations during this period.

Safety and Security are Paramount:

       1. The safety and security of the participants on this tour is our number one concern.
       2. Working closely with our Greek, Israeli, Turkish and Egyptian partners, we are constantly
           monitoring the security situation as well as the mood of the situation and react swiftly to it.
       3. We receive real-time information from the police, armed forces and security services.
       4. The group has a mobile phone for contact.

Joel explaining to a group on the
bus where we are going next


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ A Blast from the Past ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ A Blast to the Past ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

From the summit of the Great Pyramid overlooking the Nile Valley in the late 1800s

What the Wailing (Western Wall) looked like in the late 1800s (below)

View of Corinth (1836)

Kidron Valley
-- late 1800s


View of Ephesus (1700)

Temple of Zeus -- late 1800s

The Ancient Areopagus, Mars Hill -- late 1800s

Theater near Athens
-- late 1800s

Garden of Gethsemane -- late 1800s


Old Corinth -- late 1800s


Hadrian's Arch and Temple of Jupiter -- late 1800s


The Acropolis
-- late 1800s

Mount of Olives -- View from Jerusalem
-- late 1800s


The Acropolis from Philopappos Hill  -- late 1800s


Temple of Jupiter
-- late 1800s


Thriasian Plain and Eleusis on the Bay -- late 1800s






"greece and Israel tours"

freeman institute Box 305, Gambrills, Maryland 21054
TEL 410-729-4011   Cell: 410-991-9718    FAX 410-729-0353


© 2010-NOW Freeman Institute

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