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Athens (Piraeus), Greece

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Piraeus serves as Athens' primary port. Attractions here include archeological and maritime museums, the hilltop quarter of Kastella, Mikrolimano's seafood restaurants and the remains of the Piraeus Wall. After making the 6-mile journey to Greece's capital city, head to the Acropolis, the 7-acre rock formation that's home to the Propylaea, Erechtheum, Parthenon and Temple of Athena Nike. Nearby, the Acropolis Museum features exhibitions dedicated to these monuments and offers views of the city. Guided excursions may visit the Temple of Olympian Zeus; the Theatre of Dionysus, possibly the world's oldest theater; and the Panathenaic Stadium, site of the first modern Olympics. Occurring every hour on the hour, the changing of the guard ceremony at the Monument of the Unknown Soldier is a spectacle worth seeing. Food tours entice with Athenian delicacies such as olives, feta cheese and baklava.

Language: Greek
Currency: Euro (EUR)

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Cairo / Giza (Alexandria), Egypt

Highlights in Cairo include the Ibn Tulun Mosque, which dates to the ninth century, and the Citadel, a medieval fortress. Many passengers choose to visit the Great Pyramids of Giza, considered one of the Seven Wonders of the World; the Sphinx is nearby. Tours of these sites are offered on foot, horseback, or camel. The port city of Alexandria is set on a strip of land between the Mediterranean Sea and Lake Mareotis and serves as the gateway to Cairo and Giza. In Alexandria, a tour of the harbor and Montaza Palace or lounging on the beach are favorite activities.

Language: Arabic
Egyptian Pound (EGP)

Limassol, Cyprus

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Limassol is a resort town in the Greek southern half of the island. The most popular excursions visit the sites of the Curium amphitheater and the sanctuary of Apollo, the Crusader castle at Kolossi and the House of Dionysus at Paphos.

Language: Greek
Currency: Euro (EUR)

Language: Hebrew

Currency: Israeli Sheqel (ILS)

Haifa is Hebrew for "beautiful coast," and this port lives up to its name. Much of the city lies on the slopes of Mount Carmel as it plunges to the sea. A day can be well spent in Haifa, home to the Bahai Temple, Elijah's cave, the Druze villages, and the artists' colonies at Ein Hod and Safad. More popular, though, are the excursions to Jerusalem, Bethlehem, Nazareth, and the Sea of Galilee.

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Haifa, Israel

Language: Hebrew, Arabic
Currency: Israeli Sheqel (ILS)

The port town of Ashdod serves as the gateway to one of the most revered cities in the world. Jerusalem, which is central to three world religions, includes both an old walled city and a modern urban area surrounding the wall. As you stroll inside the wall, you'll eventually "discover" some of the most magnificent holy shrines in the world, including the Mosque of Omar (also known as the Dome of the Rock, the third holiest site in Islam, after Mecca and Medina); the Church of the Holy Sepulchre (marking the site of the crucifixion, burial, and resurrection of Christ); and the Western ("Wailing") Wall, once part of Solomon's Temple. Outside the walls of the old city is the beautiful Franciscan church, the Church of All Nations, on the slope of the Mount of Olives; the church is built around the rock in the Garden of Gethsemane.

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Jerusalem / Tel Aviv (Ashdod), Israel

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