Today we visit one of the most important archaeological sites in the world—ancient Ephesus. Ephesus was once the most important commercial city in Asia Minor. The Apostle Paul spent nearly 3 years in Ephesus, before he was driven out of the city by a riot stirred up by Demetrius the silversmith (Acts 19:23-34). It is from this city that Paul wrote his letters to the Corinthians. In addition to walking the streets of this ancient city and visiting the theater, we will also visit the famous Terrace Houses, the place were the most important people of Ephesus lived. We will also visit the Church of St. John which was built in Byzantine times and dedicated to the apostle, the Ephesus Museum, and what remains of the Temple of Artemis. Dinner and overnight in Kusadasi at the Charisma Delux Hotel.
Today we board our private boat that will take us on a special Sabbath journey to the island of Patmos. It was here that John was exiled for his faith, and wrote the book of Revelation. In Patmos we will visit the cave where tradition says he received his vision. We will also visit the monastery of St. John. Lunch will be provided on this day. We will have a special Sabbath worship service on our journey to Patmos. Dinner and overnight in Kusadasi.
Today we begin with a trip to the remains of ancient Smyrna. The Christians in Smyrna are one of only two churches in Revelation that received only praise and no criticism. Two traits characterized this congregation: persecution and poverty. An example of the former is the death of Polycarp, the local Christian bishop, who was put to death here for his faith in Jesus in A.D. 156.
Our next stop is Pergamum, another of the Seven Churches in Revelation. Revelation refers to Pergamum as the place "where Satan's throne is." This is not surprising since Pergamum was well known for its many temples, and as the city that became the site of the first cult of a living Roman emperor. At the time John wrote Revelation, Christians were suffering persecution for refusing to worship the emperor Domitian. We will visit the acropolis with its many temples, and the Asklepion, one of the famous healing sanctuaries in the ancient world. Overnight in Ayvalik at the Halic Park Hotel.
Today we begin our tour with Assos. According to Acts 20:13-14, instead of sailing from Troas with his companions, Paul choice to walk to Assos. After rejoining his companions in Assos, Paul then sailed to Miletus. Our next stop is Alexandria Troas. This is the famed city were Paul received his vision to come to Macedonia, and where Eutychus fell out of a window when Paul was preaching. We will see the remains from the latest archaeological excavations at this site and walk to the remains of the ancient harbor from which Paul set sail to Macedonia. We will also stop to visit the site of ancient Troy, the famed city described by the Greek poet Homer. Dinner and overnight in Canakkale at the Kolin Hotel