Each year CCHS alumni, friends, and family travel to fun and exotic places. Our objective: To expand our boundaries and comfort zones, to develop new friends and spend time with old ones, and to see the world!
Journey from Switzerland's mountain-lined Lake Lucerne to France's inspiring Lake Annecy. Take in the picturesque Charmonix Valley and stroll Italy's Lake Como. Then, cross Liechtenstein and hit the winter wonderland of Innsbruck before heading to Munich, the lively capital of Bavaria.
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Our 13 day Greek adventure started in Athens where we discovered unique treasure in the Plaka and explored the ancient ruins of the Acropolis. Our group then travelled along the breathtaking Ionian coast visiting various villages, cities and small towns that played a role in shaping Western civilization as we know it..
Talk about a travel trifecta! In March of 2014, 34 travelers (our biggest group yet) explored the coastal regions of Spain, France and Italy. The adventure started in beautiful Barcelona, then on to Nice and the French Rivera (with a stop in glamorous Monaco), continued along to Cinque Terre and the Italian Riviera and ultimately arriving in gorgeous Florence, Italy. Some travelers also chose to extend their trip with a few extra days in Rome. It certainly was a trip of a lifetime – the art, the architecture, the food, the people… all of it was simply amazing.
Ahhhh, spring time in Paris, does it get any better? In April, 2013 the alumni travel group headed to France on an amazing 10 day tour that included Paris, Normandy and the Loire Valley. From the Eiffel Tower to the magnificent chateaux of the Loire Valley, this trip included iconic sites for which France is most commonly associated. A highlight for many travelers was the visit to the D-Day beaches of Normandy and the WWII memorial – a moving experience for all. It was then on to stops at quaint seaside towns, wine tasting in the Loire Valley and back to Paris, the City of Light!
Our group flew to Istanbul, the exotic city that sits on two continents, boasts the world's largest bazaar and spice market, borders the Bosporus and the Dardanelles, and was home to Florence Nightingale during the Crimean War. From there we headed west then south, visiting spa towns, ancient Greek and Roman ruins, streets the apostle Paul had walked along, the last home of the Virgin Mary, thermal springs Cleopatra bathed in, entire villages dedicated to making oriental carpets.
In early February, 23 alumni and friends of Carolinas College of Health Sciences had their bags packed and their sights set for 12 days in Egypt, including three days in Cairo and a 4-day Nile River cruise. Then came the revolution. With less than a week remaining prior to departure, the trip was called off due to safety concerns. Half the group cancelled, but the other half – those with PTO approved and nowhere to go - quickly switched gears and headed to Sicily. The group landed in Palermo and were quickly enchanted by Sicilian landscape, food, and history. The 12-day tour included ancient Greek temples and theaters (they sat in a theater where Sophocles saw his plays performed for the first time), Roman arenas where gladiators battled wild animals to win their freedom, grand cathedrals and tiny churches (one with a lone Caravaggio on display), and castles that overlooked the azure Mediterranean.
Carolinas travelers even walked through the church where Michael Corleone and Apollonia were wed in The Godfather. CCHS alumnus Cathy Parris recollects: "I love history, so for me, this trip was heavenly. Standing next to an 8th Century BC Greek Temple surrounded by blooming almond trees in the Valley of the Temples at Agrigento? It just doesn't get any better!" Former CHS benefits administrator Ann Anderson adds, "The food was hands down remarkable! Sicily is the home of gelato and cannoli; the wines and cheeses are world class, and you haven't lived till you've tried freshly roasted Sicilian artichokes!" CCHS president Dr. Ellen Sheppard concluded, "We had to put the pyramids and the sphinx off for a year or two, but Sicily greatly exceeded our expectations!"