Voyage from Italy to Croatia & Greece with Professors Ben David and Karen Gross

Participants are required to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19.


Date: May 29th to June 7th, 2022

Trip Length: 8 Nights, 9 Days.

Group Size: About 14 - 22  participants; ship holds 48 participants (at least one other group will be on board)

Cost: Starting at $6,900

Find the full brochure here

Program Overview
Of the many seaborne idylls possible in the Mediterranean, sailing in the Adriatic and Ionian seas and exploring landmark historic places in Italy, Croatia and Greece is one of the loveliest and most gratifying.

Our voyage begins in Venice, the undisputed “Queen of the Adriatic.” Benefiting from its unique and defensible position, Venice, which is spread over 118 islands in a lagoon, dominated for hundreds of years not only its surrounding land territory and the nearby Croatian coast, but also the Ionian Sea and beyond. The 15th century saw the pinnacle of Venetian power, when its navy controlled the sea lanes from the northern Adriatic to the Eastern Mediterranean, and its merchants gained unprecedented wealth and prosperity for themselves and their fabled city.

After exploring Venice’s main sites, we will embark the Elysium, a private yacht-like small cruise ship that accommodates only 48 guests, and sail in the Grand Canal, providing from the ships decks superb views of Venice’s distinctive architecture. The ship will then enter the Adriatic Sea and call at ports on both shores of the Adriatic, in Italy and Croatia, where we will explore some of the best preserved ancient and medieval towns and monuments in the entire Mediterranean. Elysium will enter the canal that leads to Ravenna, an ancient city that came to prominence in the 5th century AD, when it became the capital of the Western Roman Empire. Ravenna is famed for its early churches that are decorated with luminous mosaics and other pieces of art. Next is the port city of Ancona, founded originally by Greeks in the 4th century BC, our gateway to Italy’s two most remarkable historic towns, medieval Gubbio, perched on a hill, its narrow streets and alleyways lined with well-preserved Gothic buildings, and Urbino, the evocative Renaissance town and a center of learning and the arts since the 15th century.

Cruising across the Adriatic, we arrive in Croatia’s Split, where we will tour the extensive Palace of Diocletian, built by the emperor in 295-305 AD, the only Roman palace that has been inhabited continuously since Roman times. Near Split is Hvar, one of Croatia’s most attractive islands, noted for its Venetian architecture and fields of aromatic lavender. Celebrated Dubrovnik, enclosed within is walls, is one of Europe’s best-preserved medieval cities, with splendid buildings lining its streets.

Leaving the Adriatic, we will enter the Ionian Sea to call at Corfu, the elegant Greek island whose many historic monuments span the centuries from the 6th century BC to the more recent past. The small port town of Itea provides easy access to Delphi. Located below towering Mount Parnassus, Delphi was the sanctuary of Apollo and the seat of his famed oracle. From Itea, the ship will cross the Corinth Canal, the narrow waterway that separates the Peloponnese from the Greek mainland, to enter the Aegean Sea and dock in Athens’s port of Piraeus.

Treasures of the Adriatic and Ionian Seas provides a unique opportunity to explore the history, culture, and masterpieces of art and architecture from the ancient Greek and Roman eras to the Medieval and Renaissance periods. 

Lewis & Clark Professor of Art History Ben David and Professor of English Karen Gross will be a resource along the journey as they share their expertise regarding ancient art, literature, and the classics.

May 29:
Depart the US
May 30: Arrive in Venice. Transfer to the Hotel Danieli.
May 31: Tour Venice. In the afternoon, embark on Elysium and sail. Evening arrival in Ravenna. Overnight aboard docked in port.
June 1: Tour Ravenna’s ancient churches, with their glorious mosaics, and other sites.
June 2: Ancona for an excursion to two of Italy’s gems: medieval Gubbio and Renaissance Urbino.
June 3: Morning in Split, Croatia, for a tour of Diocletian’s Palace and the old town. Afternoon at Hvar, one of Croatia’s loveliest islands.
June 4: Dubrovnik, Croatia. Explore the walled medieval town, one of Europe’s best preserved.
June 5: Corfu, Ionian Islands, Greece. Tour the island.
June 6: Itea for the excursion to Delphi.
June 7: Piraeus. Transfer to Athens airport for the return flight home.

One night in Venice at Hotel Bauer Palazzo.
Seven night voyage aboard the Elysium.

Outside cabin on Main Deck with portholes (category E, D, C) Outside cabin on Main Deck with portholes (category E, D, C)


Outside cabin on Boat Deck with window (categories B, A) Outside cabin on Boat Deck with window (categories B, A)



All cabins aboard the Elysium face outside offering ocean-view windows (B & A) or portholes (E, D, & C). Cabins feature a lower queen-size bed that can be arranged as two twins, private facilities, temperature control, telephone, flat screen TV, ample closet space, and 110 & 220 volt electrical outlets.

Category Descriptions and Rates (per person/double occupancy): 

E- $6,990 - Outside cabins on Main Deck with portholes: Cabins 203, 205, 215

D- $7,790 - Outside cabins on Main Deck with portholes: Cabins 202, 207, 209, 211

C- $8,390 - Outside cabins on Main Deck with portholes: Cabins 204 – 212

B- $9,990 - Outside cabins on Boat Deck with window: Cabins 404 – 410

A- $10,890 - Outside cabins on Boat Deck with window: Cabins 401 – 411

Single occupancy rate is 170% of the double occupancy per person rate.

If you are a single traveler interested in sharing a room with a fellow traveler, please email Andrew McPheeters at

Note: When you deposit, we will contact you to discuss available cabin options.

Register Here!

Faculty Leaders
Ben David, Associate Professor of Art History

Professor David specializes in Italian art from 1300-1600, with an emphasis on Early Renaissance painting. His scholarship and teaching engage the historical and theoretical implications of the practice of narrative in Renaissance art and theories of narrative more generally. He is especially interested in the relationship between art and literature. Other research projects and courses explore the complex nature of the Renaissance engagement with classical antiquity and visualizations of Dante’s Divine Comedy from the fourteenth century to the present day. He is also interested in how contemporary art creates dialogues with Renaissance and Medieval Art and in the intersections of art history and theories of memory. Professor David is the Group leader for the student semester abroad program in Athens. He led an alumni travel group to Greece in 2019.

Karen Gross, Associate Professor of English and Department Chair

Karen Gross joined the Lewis & Clark English department in 2005. She studies and teaches the European Middle Ages with an emphasis on England and Italy in the thirteenth through fifteenth centuries. She is particularly interested in the reception of classical texts, Dante, medieval literary theory and education, the history of the book, and the relationship between literature and the visual arts. Her research has been supported by grants from the New York Public Library, the Mellon Foundation, the Huntington Library, the Stanford Humanities Center, and the Fulbright program. In 2008 she received the Graves Award, sponsored by the ACLS, for her efforts as a teacher. Currently, she is researching illuminated Apocalypse manuscripts. She led an alumni travel group to Greece in 2019.

Questions, contact Andrew McPheeters, Associate Vice President of Alumni and Parent Engagement at: or 503-768-7936.