Travel with The Met . . . and Arrangements Abroad!


Venice, Grand Canal

This week, we had a big request from our flagship client, The Metropolitan Museum of Art: Web copy and images for 9 upcoming Travel with the Met programs to Venice (pictured above), Berlin, Iran, Cuba (2 programs by land, 1 by sea), Portugal & Spain, Burma & Indonesia, and Morocco.

Thanks to a coordinated effort between our Operations, Sales, and Communications teams, we managed to meet The Met’s tight deadline. Now that it’s done and we can relax a bit, we thought a photo-driven blog post might be nice for a Friday afternoon. Here are some places we’ll be taking travelers in 2017 on the aforementioned trips:

Bagan temples

Bagan pagodas

Bagan, Burma (Myanmar) is known as “the city of a thousand pagodas.” But those are just the ones that are left–there used to be thousands more!


Fishermen in Cienfuegos. Photo by Alistair Kitchen.

We’ve been taking groups to Cuba by land since 1999, and now we’re offering a unique cruise of the country’s less-developed southern coast, from Cienfuegos to Santiago. Think rugged mountains, pristine beaches, picture-perfect colonial architecture … and all the pleasures of an intimate luxury yacht. For more on this exciting program, click here.

Merida_Spain_by_Juan Antonio F. Segal

Merida, Spain. Photo by Juan Antonio F. Segal.

Maybe you’ve been to Portugal or Spain, but have you ever been to Alentejo (pronounced “A-len-TAY-zho”)? Or Extremadura (“Es-tray-ma-DOO-ra”)? These off-the-beaten-path regions of Portugal and Spain, which border each other, offer cultural influences from Celtic to Roman to Moorish to French. Mérida, former capital of the Roman province of Lusitania, is just one of five UNESCO World Heritage Sites visited on this program.

Vakil mosque, Shiraz, Iran

Vakil mosque, Shiraz, Iran

Like Cuba, Iran is a favorite destination for Met travelers, but next year we’re doing something new: “Undiscovered Iran,” led by The Met’s head curator for the Department of Islamic Art. The program begins in northeastern Iran at Mashad, the country’s holiest city, and goes to Nishan (to see the tomb of Omar “A loaf of bread, a jug of wine, and thou” Khayyam), Kashan, Tehran, Isfahan, Shiraz, Pasargadae, and Persepolis.

For more information about any of these trips, contact us at or 800-221-1944. Have a great Memorial Day weekend!


La Vie en Rose


Image by Cathy Farber

Experience the French Riviera during a two-night stay in the heart of Nice, just a short walk from the famous flower market. During a free evening, you may wish to enjoy dinner at one of the delightful restaurants along the Old Port. Then embark AmaDagio for a scenic seven-night cruise to Lyon, France’s gourmet food capital. Highlights on this voyage include a wine tasting in Châteauneuf-du-Pape; a tour of Avignon’s impressive Papal Palace; and a private concert in the Orangerie at 17th-century Château de Cormatin.

The Romantic Rhône
Arles to Lyon Aboard AmaDagio
September 20 to 30, 2016
With art historian Olivier Bernier, opera expert Arthur Kaplan, and Yale professor Anna Zayaruznaya

Please click to view brochure

Happy Birthday, Sister Ships!


The beloved tall ships Sea Cloud and Sea Cloud II turn a collective 100 years old in 2016, with the grande dame celebrating 85 years and her younger sister, 15. Throughout the year, we offer voyages aboard these lovely ladies, from the Mediterranean to the Baltic Seas and to the Celtic Isles.

Whether you join Sea Cloud in the Adriatic or sail around Sicily aboard Sea Cloud II this fall, you’re in for a thrill! On Saturday, October 22, saluting battery cannon fire will greet the ships when they both arrive in Syracuse, marking their collective centennial. The sisters then sail together to Malta, arriving the next morning. If you join either cruise, you can witness the historic occasion!

Adriatic Odyssey
October 14 to 23, 2016
With lecturer Patrick Bowe,
Met curator Stephan Wolohojian
and Yale Professor Ivo Banac
Please click to view brochure

Splendors of Sicily
October 14 to 23, 2016
With Met curator Wolfram Koeppe
Please click to view brochure

The Queen of Rivers

Budapest by night. Photo by SuperCar-RoadTripfr

Budapest by night. Photo by SuperCar-RoadTripfr

National Geographic Traveler recently named the Danube River one of its must-see places for 2016. “The Danube River has been the main thoroughfare across central and eastern Europe for millennia,” writes Bill Fink. “Herodotus called it the ‘greatest of all rivers’ 2,500 years ago, and it still may be.” Experience what Napoleon dubbed the “Queen of Europe’s rivers” aboard Royal Crown next June.

The Lower Danube: Medieval to Modern
Vienna to Bucharest Aboard Royal Crown
June 10 to 21, 2016
With Jayson Kerr Dobney, Associate Curator in the Department of Musical Instruments at The Metropolitan Museum of Art
Please click to view brochure

Paul Kennedy joins “Sailing the Black Sea”

Istanbul Hagia Sophia

Hagia Sophia in Istanbul by Ben Goetzinger (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (, via Wikimedia Commons


Paul Kennedy joins Sailing the Black Sea, September 24 to October 7, 2015, as a featured speaker with Yale Educational Travel.

It turns out that the celebrated Yale historian and student of grand strategy has been intrigued by the Black Sea region ever since he read John Buchan’s WW1 thriller Greenmantle as a young student back in Britain. On the first day of the cruise, Kennedy enthused, “we actually follow the route of the German battle cruisers as they steamed out of the Golden Horn to attack southern Russia and bring about the Turkish-Russian fighting in November 1914!  We will sail into the strategically-contested port of Batumi, visit Georgia, and anchor in the estuary of the Danube.”

Sponsored by Yale Educational Travel, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, and National Trust of Historic Preservation, Sailing the Black Sea is a 12-night voyage, September 25 to October 7, 2015, aboard Variety Voyager. Kennedy shares the lecture program aboard the 70-guest Variety Voyager with Elizabeth Milleker, Curator in the Department of Greek and Roman Art at the Metropolitan Museum.

Not your standard “call in a port, visit the museum” kind of a experience, the voyage rather has a strong historical theme (for those who like that sort of thing, Kennedy graciously demurred), which is “no less than the struggle of the two great traditional Eastern empires of Imperial Russia and Ottoman Turkey, in the last throes of their older order.  After the war is over, it’s all going to be different (Bolshevik Russia and Ataturk’s modern Turkey), and these will be vanished worlds.  But the palaces, the harbors, the forts, and the seas remain for us to inspect and marvel.”

Paul KennedyPaul Kennedy

The author of The Rise and Fall of the Great Powers and a much-in-demand speaker, Kennedy has devoted a long career to the history of international relations, economic relations and grand strategy.  Co-director of the International Security Studies program, distinguished fellow of the Brady-Johnson Program in Grand Strategy and J. Richardson Dilworth Professor of History at Yale, Kennedy was most recently awarded the Hattendorf Prize for Distinguished Original Research in Maritime History by the U.S. Naval War College.  He was made Commander of the Order of the British Empire in 2000.

Elizabeth MillekerElizabeth Milleker

Closely involved in the reinstallation of the Greek and Roman galleries at the Metropolitan Museum and editor of Light on Stone Greek and Roman Sculpture in The Metropolitan Museum of Art: A Photographic Essay, Elizabeth Milleker joined the Greek and Roman Department at the Metropolitan Museum in 1986 and worked as a curator there until her retirement in 2009. Currently a Senior Research Fellow at the Museum, she pursues her own work on marble sculpture from Corinth, Greece. After graduating from Radcliffe College, the enterprising scholar founded and ran an art school, then continued her studies at the Institute of Fine Arts, New York University, where she earned her doctorate. An avid traveler, she has lectured on numerous Travel with the Met trips to Greece, Turkey, and Italy.

Variety VoyagerVariety Voyager

With just 36 cabins, all with double or twin beds and expansive decks, the M.Y. Variety Voyager offers access, comfort and service in the atmosphere of a private yacht. Enjoy panoramic views throughout, whether spending time in your stateroom, dining al fresco, or relaxing on the decks or in glass-wrapped lounges.

For reservations, a brochure or questions, contact Yale Educational Travel directly at 203.432.1952 or email

Contributed by Darrel Schoeling. 

News from Abroad: February 2015

那智の滝(Nachi Falls)

ModelYSL in Paris

Yves Saint Laurent, who died in 2008, was one of fashion’s greatest icons, dressing Catherine Deneuve, pioneering the pantsuit, and introducing ready–to–wear. Watch the legendary designer at work in this excerpt from a recent documentary—and step inside his studio (normally closed to the public) on our upcoming trip to Paris and London.

Courtiers & Couturiers
A History of European Fashion
in London & Paris
March 13 to 21, 2015

Kate with TulipsKate Blooms in Bruges

Kate Klorer, one of our most popular tour directors, says she’s “absolutely thrilled” to be taking a group to Holland and Belgium during tulip season: “These countries are as filled with art treasures as the Keukenhof is with flowers!” Travelers will visit the Rijksmuseum and Van Gogh, Frans Hals, and Kröller-Müller museums; the last is a special favorite, Kate adds: “I was blown away by its incredible collection and magnificent grounds.” Another must-see is the Ghent Altarpiece. Besides Holland and Belgium, in 2015 Kate will accompany our groups to Cuba, the Arabian Peninsula, and France.

Amsterdam & Beyond
Holland & Belgium
May 2 to 11, 2015

KoyasanCelebrate 1,200 Years with Kukai

Experience a temple stay at Koyasan, Japan—the sacred mountain and UNESCO pilgrimage site—founded 1,200 years ago this spring by the revered monk and scholar Kobo Daishi Kukai. The Buddhist monasteries of Koyasan and the sacred Nachi waterfall and shrine (pictured at top) are just two highlights on “Ancient Sacred Sites of Japan,” designed and led by John Carpenter, Curator of Japanese Art at The Metropolitan Museum of Art. The Way of St. James in Spain, a better-known UNESCO pilgrimage route, is also on our schedule this year!

Ancient Sacred Sites of Japan
May 5 to 15, 2015

Sea CloudPlato in the Google Age

Author Rebecca Newberger Goldstein’s latest book, Plato at the Googleplex, catapults the ancient Athenian into the 21st century. Dr. Goldstein will be lecturing on Plato during our summer Sea Cloud cruise,“Sailing the Mediterranean in the Age of Odysseus.” Read The New York Times review of her book here, watch Dr. Goldstein discusses the book at Google’s Silicon Valley campus, and join us in June to hear her speak live. Also on board will be her husband, Harvard professor Steven Pinker, and Joan Aruz, Curator in Charge of Ancient and Near Eastern Art at The Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Sailing the Mediterranean
in the Age of Odysseus
Istanbul to Athens Aboard Sea Cloud
June 27 to July 5, 2015

Simon Bordwin CubaAn American in Cuba

Kudos to our own Simon Bordwin, whose Cuba slide show was recently featured on the Condé Nast Traveler website! The Brooklyn-based photographer and Arrangements Abroad sales associate took these images during his stint as tour director on the “Art and Architecture of Cuba” program with The Metropolitan Museum of Art, which has another Cuba trip coming up in March. Have a look at the captivating slideshow and consider joining us on a future trip.

Jose Fuster Jaimanitas photo by Simon Bordwin

CC_1_15_web_-1(1)Click here to read our Cultural Calendar of 2015 and 2016 travel programs.