Created: 15.06.2017

Monday, September 17 - Day 1 - DEPART USA - We depart Buffalo and travel to Toronto via motor coach for our flights to Barcelona. We enjoy in-flight movies, dinner and breakfast aloft.  Tuesday, September 18 - Day 2 - BARCELONA - Planning for a morning arrival, we depart the airport and visit to Casa Milíà, the city???s exemplary Modernista building and Gaudí creation and also tour through Park Güell, Gaudí???s colorful park overlooking the city.  We check into hotel for dinner and overnight. (D)  Wednesday, September 19 - Day 3 - BARCELONA - After breakfast at our hotel, we depart to celebrate Mass at Sagrada Família, Gaudí???s most famous and awe-inspiring church.  The church, still unfinished, with its otherworldly spires, represents the classics, nature, and religion.  After Mass, we tour this masterpiece that is an icon of the city.  Next, we visit the Palace of Catalan Music and tour its exceptional and breathtaking interior.  If available, you have the option to return to the Palace of Music for a concert later this evening or tomorrow evening.   The remainder of the day is free to stroll the Ramblas, the harbor front, visit the Picasso Museum, enjoy churros and chocolate or tapas and an independent dinner.  (B)  Thursday, September 20 - Day 4 - BARCELONA-MONTSERRAT-BARCELONA - We depart our hotel after breakfast and visit Barcelona???s 14th Century Gothic Cathedral where we celebrate Mass.    Next, we travel to one of Spain???s key religious sites, the Santa Maria de Montserrat monastery, and the Royal Basilica, home of the 12th Century carving of Our Lady of Montserrat and if possible, a brief recital by the Montserrat Boys Choir.  We have time to explore the monastery grounds, have an independent lunch.  After our visit, we visit the award winning and world-famous Bodegas Torres Winery in El Penedès wine region near Barcelona for wine tasting. Tonight, after dinner together, we are entertained by the music and colored lights of the city???s Magic Fountains.  (B, D)  Friday, September 21 - Day 5 - BARCELONA ??? CARCASSONNE - We depart our hotel and Barcelona after breakfast and journey into France.  First, we view the château of Peyrepertuse where the ruins seem to grow right out of the narrow cliff.  The location has been occupied since Roman time and the Cathar castle was built before the 11th Century in a strategic cliff position.  Our journey continues on to Carcassonne, a 13th Century Romanesque walled fortress city of medieval towers and turrets.  After checking into our hotel and enjoying dinner together, we stroll the ramparts of the illuminated city, being mesmerized by light and history. (B, D)  Saturday, September 22 - Day 6 - CARCASSONNE ??? AVIGNON ??? After breakfast this morning, we celebrate Mass in the Carcassonne Cathedral or attend a regularly scheduled Mass.  We then have free time to explore Carcassonne in the daylight and have time for shopping and an independent lunch.   Before arriving in Avignon, we visit the Pont du Gard, a perfectly preserved Roman aqueduct built about the year 19 B.C. that supplied nine million gallons of water per day to Nimes, one of ancient Europe???s largest cities.  We arrive in Avignon where we check into our hotel and enjoy dinner together.  (B, D)  Sunday, September 23 - Day 7 - AVIGNON ??? After breakfast, we walk to the Romanesque Cathedral dating from late 12th Century next to the Palais des Papes to celebrate Mass.  We then tour the city on foot with visits to the St. Benezet Bridge and Palace of the Popes.  The remainder of the afternoon is free to continue to explore the city.  In the evening, we cruise down the river to the Ile de la Barthelasse to enjoy dinner together.  After dinner, we return to our hotel for the night.  (B, D) Monday, September 24 - Day 8 - AVIGNON ??? Enjoy breakfast at our hotel and then we travel the Chateauneuf du Pape wine growing region for a tour of a local winery and lunch with wine tasting.  Afterward, we return to Avignon where the remainder of the day is free to enjoy the city???s ambiance, shop, and have an independent dinner.  (B, L) Tuesday, September 25 - Day 9 - AVIGNON- NICE ??? We depart Avignon after breakfast and we travel to Nice where we visit the Russian Orthodox Cathedral, one of the finest outside Russia. On the way to Nice, we stop in Aix en Provence, the birthplace of Cezanne and visit his studio.  We check into our hotel and enjoy dinner together tonight. (B, D)  Wednesday, September 26 - Day 10 - NICE ??? EZE-LE-VILLAGE ??? NICE -After breakfast we tour Nice and its surroundings from the sea with a one-hour cruise along the coastline.  After an independent lunch, we travel along the breathtaking Mediterranean Cote d???Azur to the hilltop town of Eze-le-Village with its spectacular views of the sea. We learn about the French perfume-making by visiting Fragonard.  We have time to stroll through the town, visit the Jardins d???Eze.  After our tour, we return to Nice for an independent dinner. (B)  Thursday, September 27 - Day 11 - NICE-MONACO ??? Breakfast at our hotel will prepare us for a full day trip to the glamorous Principality of Monaco.  Our visit will include a tour of 19th Century casino, an independent lunch with breathtaking views of the sea atop the Jacques Cousteau Museum, a visit and Mass celebrated in the Cathedral of Monaco ??? the site of the fairytale wedding and burial place of Grace Kelly and her husband Prince Rainier, and a tour inside the lavish and impressive Royal Palace.  We return to Nice and enjoy an independent dinner and evening. (B) Friday, September 28 - Day 12 - NICE-PORTOFINO ??? After breakfast we journey into Italy to the picturesque town of Portofino, the half-moon seaside village with pastel houses lining the shore of the harbor.  We are oriented to the town with visits to the Church of St. Georgio and St. Martin.  We celebrate Mass at one of them giving thanks for our pilgrimage.  There is time to explore the village on your own before we check into our hotel and have our farewell dinner together in this beautiful and scenic setting.  (B, D) Saturday, September 29 - Day 13 - DEPARTURE ??? We enjoy breakfast at our hotel and depart for Genoa???s airport for our flights back to Toronto and motor coach transfer to the USA. (B)

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