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Zegrahm Expeditions Travel Resources

Welcome to the Zegrahm Expeditions resources page! Here you will find inspiration for your next adventure and information from your last adventure, produced by our field leaders, Seattle office staff, and contributing writers. From blog posts and field reports (daily recaps of a past expeditions with images) to photo galleries and videos, explore your world from our perspective.

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Dancers, Albania
September 15, 2011
Blog Post

Our ship made a calm crossing on the deep blue Mediterranean from Sicily to the Adriatic Sea and the beautiful shores of Montenegro, Croatia, and Albania. Our first Adriatic stop was in Montenegro. Sailing there was itself an event, winding our way through the dramatically curving coastline of the fjord-like Bay of Kotor. There, tucked away at the base of a looming rocky mountain, rested one of the jewels of the Adriatic, the walled Venetian town of Kotor, a renaissance city frozen...

Monreale
April 9, 2011
Blog Post

The history of Sicily is a list of foreign conquerors. The island was a Greek colony, then Carthaginian, next Roman, then Byzantine, followed by Moorish, Norman, and Spanish. It didn’t become part of Italy until 1860. Each ruling dynasty left its mark on Sicily—and we saw the marks of a variety of them today, from the Roman theatre at Segesta to the medieval mountaintop village of Erice to the Moorish architecture of Monreale.

A couple of things stood out for me. First, the hike down...

Syracuse, Sicily
April 19, 2011
Blog Post

The claim to fame of many towns, in America and elsewhere, is that somebody famous was born there. In most cases it’s an author or a Civil War general. If the town is very lucky, it might be a movie star. Syracuse, too, has its names to drop, but in a place where history and greatness reach back as far as this one, the situation is a little different. Our guide today quite casually mentioned Syracuse’s favorite son—Archimedes, the greatest mathematician and inventor of the ancient world and...

Opera House, Odessa
October 3, 2008
Blog Post

I just returned home after leading two fantastic Circumnavigation of the Black Sea voyages! The Black Sea explorations are ever-changing and each year it seems there are new opportunities. On these recent voyages, for the first time, we were able to visit the famous Odessa Opera House.

Our tour agent in the Ukraine, Janna Belousova, and Zegrahm staff member, Olga Stone, worked together to obtain special permission from the director for an insiders tour of...

Amasya, Turkey
September 24, 2009
Blog Post

On the Black Sea, history lies in many layers. Jason and the Argonauts rowed these waters searching for the Golden Fleece. Mark Twain explored this sea in the 1800's on the ship, Quaker City, perhaps the first voyage of its kind. We travel though this sea experiencing history, past and present, first-hand.

Above the Turkish town of Amasya, Pontic kings, (scions of Alexander’s fractured empire) were buried in tombs carved into cliffs. During our hike above the Izilirmak river...

Cappadocia, Turkey
January 19, 2010
Blog Post

Zegrahm's Turkey tour partner was born in the Caucasus Mountains. Having covered every mile of his beloved homeland, Yasar Karadag has educated travelers for over 20 years on its cultural, archaeological, and natural splendors.

It seems that the longer I work in the world of travel the greater my pride in my homeland. Not only was I born in the same country as Homer, Herodotus, St. Paul, and Mevlana, but I am privileged to carry on the tradition of recalling their legacies...

Syracuse, Sicily
April 19, 2010
Blog Post

There was a brisk breeze blowing, but it was a sunny morning as we sailed into the great harbor at Syracuse and perhaps we had something of the same experience of those first Greek colonists from Corinth who arrived more than 2,700 years ago to their new land. Cautious people, they settled on the small offshore island of Ortygia where archaeological excavations have indicated there was already a settlement of native huts. I doubt that they suspected their town was going to become the largest...

Great Saltee Island
August 18, 2011
Blog Post

Today we were spoiled for choice.

Some of us opted for a trip to world famous Lismore Castle and Gardens. The trip gave them the opportunity to pass through some of Ireland’s most scenic countryside, looking its best in early-summer with lush green fields sprinkled with Elder bushes covered in large white blossoms. Lismore itself has won a number of heritage awards and was looking radiant in the sunshine. The castle itself is steeped in history. Built by Prince John of England in...

Valletta, Malta
April 15, 2010
Blog Post

The Romans certainly had it right when they called their settlement in the center of this island Melita, a derivation of "honey," whether for the honey they produced or the ubiquitous honey-colored limestone. The stone from which virtually all buildings are made, deepens in color as it weathers and lends a pleasant homogeneity to the place that harmonizes with the environment whether urban or rural. It's the perfect season to visit as everything is blooming making the fields, gardens, and...

Amphoras at the Bodrum Museum of Underwater Archaeology
April 19, 2007
Blog Post

In 1960, George F. Bass, then a graduate student at the University of Pennsylvania, learned to dive in order to excavate a Bronze Age shipwreck off Cape Gelidonya, on Turkey's southern coast. This was the first scientific excavation of a site beneath the water, and not only represented a revolution in archaeology, but also helped rewrite scholars' understanding of ancient trade in the Mediterranean three thousand years ago.

The example...

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