Oberammergau, Medjugorje & Dalmatian Coast Pilgrimage
Spiritual Director: Fr. Rogelio Gonzalez
Group Coordinator: Cora Reyes
July 18 - August 1, 2020
Your trip includes
- Round-trip airfare from San Francisco (SFO) or Los Angeles (LAX)
- All airport taxes & fuel surcharges
- Centrally located First Class Hotels as follows: (or similar)
- ~ 3 nights: Jul 19 - Jul 22: Hotel Grace, Medjugorje
- ~ 1 night: Jul 22 - Jul 23: Hotel Regent, Tivat
- ~ 2 nights: Jul 23 - Jul 25: Hotel Lapad, Dubrovnik
- ~ 1 night: Jul 25 - Jul 26: Hotel Cornaro, Split
- ~ 1 night: Jul 26 - Jul 27: Hotel Mirjana & Rastoke, Plitvice Lakes
- ~ 2 nights: Jul 27 - Jul 29: Hotel Rikli Balance, Bled
- ~ 2 nights: Jul 29 - Jul 31: Oberammergau, accommodation to be advised
- 1 night: Jul 31 - Aug 01: Anna Hotel Geisel, Munich
- Transfers as per itinerary
- Breakfast and Dinner daily
- 2 Lunches (in Kotor and on the day of Passion Play)
- Wine and mineral water with dinners
- Category 1 ticket for the Passion Play
- Official Passion Play Program in English
- Transportation by air-conditioned motor coach
- Assistance of professional local guide(s)
- Sightseeing and admission fees as per Itinerary
- Mass daily & Spiritual activities
- Luggage handling (1 piece per person)
- Flight bag & portfolio of all travel documents
- Lunches not mentioned, Beverages, Tips to your guide and driver.
Sat, Jul 18: Departure from U.S.
Make your way to your local airport where you will board your overnight flight. Your meals are served on board.
Sun, Jul 19: Arrive Medjugorje
Upon arrival in Europe, change gates to board your short connection flight to either: Dubrovnik, Split, or Sarajevo airport. Upon arrival collect your luggage in the baggage claim area and continue to the arrival's hall where you will be greeted by a tour guide and/or driver, who will take you on the 2 1/2 hour drive to the village of Medjugorje. Enjoy dinner before retiring for the evening.
Mon and Tue, Jul 20 and 21: Experience Medjugorje:
The most beautiful feature of Medjugorje is its simplicity, and its peace. While in Medjugorje, you will have the opportunity to experience your faith grow and share in the faith journey of pilgrims from all over the world. The local guide will accompany your group throughout your stay in the village.
Some activities that will accompany you in your spiritual journey:
Attend Daily Mass: Each morning, at 10:00 A.M, your group will assemble at St. James Church for Mass (English-Speaking). At the end of each Mass, regardless of language, there is a blessing of the religious articles that you have with you. On Feast Days, and Sundays: English Mass is at Noon
Climb Apparition Hill: This mountainous hill is where the visionaries first encountered Our Lady. Also, at the base of this hill is a Blue Cross, where it is said Our Lady appeared to the children while they hid from the communist police in the early days of the alleged apparitions. When climbing, your group is invited to recite the Rosary, pausing five times for each decade of the Rosary. At the top of the hill, you will witness the exact location of the first alleged apparition of Our Lady to the visionaries and enjoy private time in prayer.
Climb Mt. Krizevac (Cross Mountain): In 1933, the villagers built a 30' high cross atop a mountain to commemorate Jesus' passion and death on the cross. Your group will have the opportunity to climb this mountain and venerate that very cross. When climbing, your group is invited to pray the Stations of the Cross (to meditate on Jesus' suffering Road to Calvary), pausing fifteen times for each Station.
Apparitions: Each evening at 6PM, your group will join the villagers and fellow pilgrims of Medjugorje in saying the Rosary as all anxiously await the alleged arrival of Our Lady to the visionaries. Following the apparition, at 6:40PM feel free to stay at St. James Church and attend the Croatian Mass. Following the Croatian Mass, there is a Blessing of the Sick.
Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament: Our Lady has always called us to be close to her Son. For this, you will have the opportunity to adore the Blessed Sacrament at the outside altar of St. James Church. Adoration is held on Tuesdays and Saturdays; Veneration of the Cross is held on Fridays inside the church. Additionally, there is an Adoration Chapel on the grounds of St. James Church. Adoration is held here in the afternoon hours.
Meetings with the Visionaries: Pending their availability, your guide will arrange meetings with the visionaries at their homes.
Prayer at the Statue of the Risen Christ: Located on the grounds of St. James Church, is the bronze statue of the Risen Christ. Many pilgrims sit and pray on the benches surrounding this peaceful statue. This statue miraculously seeps droplets of water at all times of the day, out of Christ's right knee.
Wed, Jul 22: Medjugorje - Mostar - Tivat
Following breakfast we depart Medjugorje for Mostar. Once in the town visit the Old Bazaar, the Turkish House, and the Mosque. Free time for lunch on your own. Tonight, gather with fellow travelers at a Welcome Dinner at your hotel. Overnight in Tivat.
Thu, Jul 23: Kotor - Perast - Dubrovnik
Following breakfast head to the mouth of the beautiful Bay of Kotor, the longest and deepest fjord in Southern Europe. Enjoy a boat ride to Our Lady of the Rocks, one of two islets off the coast of Perast. The Roman Catholic Church is the largest building on the islet, with a museum attached to it. Upon return to the coast, we will stop in Perast, an old charming coastal town. Visit Kotor where you will have lunch and a guided tour of Old Town. We continue to Dubrovnik, our final destination for two nights. Dinner and overnight at your hotel.
Fri, Jul 24: Dubrovnik
Following breakfast enjoy a walking tour of the "Old City!" It will begin at St. Blasius' Church, dedicated to the Patron Saint of Dubrovnik. This Baroque styled church was constructed by Venetian architect, Marino Gropelli in 1715. It was styled after the Venetian Church, St. Mauritius. You will know that you have reached this master piece by its large staircase leading to the main portal and its large dome that decorates the roof. Continue to the Gothic and Renaissance styled Rector's Palace. The palace is home to the history department of the museum of Dubrovnik. Following, you will stroll by the iconic Bell Tower clock and Orlando's Column. To the left of this column, you will see Sponza Palace. In the sixteenth century, members of the Academia dei Concordi met in the palace's first floor hall to discuss literature. As a result, the palace is the most important cultural institution of Dubrovnik. Lastly, you will visit the Dominican and Franciscan Monasteries. The location of the Dominican Monastery is strategically placed at the most sensitive point of Dubrovnik's defense barriers. While at the Franciscan Monastery, you will have the opportunity to visit the Pharmacy. The founding of this Pharmacy was collaborative as it served as the public pharmacy and for the needs of the monks. This afternoon, you will enjoy lunch on own at one of the many small, family-owned restaurants along the narrow streets. Remainder of the day at leisure. This evening, enjoy dinner and overnight in Dubrovnik.
Sat, Jul 25: Dubrovnik - Split
Today we will travel north along the spectacular Adriatic coast, past old fishing villages and new resorts, to the city of Split, the second-largest city of Croatia. The historic inner city of Split was built around the Roman Emperor Diocletian's Palace, a UNESCO World Cultural Heritage Site. While exploring, you will have the opportunity to see remnants of Split's Roman heritage such as, Jupiter's Temple, the Peristyle of Diocletian's Palace and the Cathedral of St. Domnius. The Temple of Jupiter was built around the third century and is dedicated to the highest Roman god, the god of the sky, and the god of thunder. The Diocletian's Palace had two purposes; half was used for the Diocletian's personal use, and the other half was used as a military garrison. Lastly, you will visit the Cathedral of St. Domnius that is encircled by twenty-four columns. The oldest monuments in this Holy place are those depicting the life of Christ that are found on the entrance doors of the Church. This evening, you will enjoy dinner at a local Konoba (restaurant in the coastal area of Adriatic Sea). Following dinner, you will continue to your hotel where you will have a restful overnight.
Sun, Jul 26: Split-Trogir-Plitvice Lakes
After breakfast and morning Mass, head to Trogir, the center of artistic activities. Scholars from around the world gather here to study and paint. See St. Lawrence Cathedral, designed by lauded medieval architect Radovan. Then, turn inland and travel to spectacular Plitvice Lakes National Park. Have your camera ready as you take a walking tour around several of the lower lakes. Enjoy the breathtaking scenery of this natural wonder of 16 terraced lakes surrounded by thickly wooded mountains and lush vegetation. Dinner at your hotel. Overnight in Plitvice Lakes.
Mon, Jul 27: Plitvice Lakes - Opatija - Postojna - Bled
Return to the coast and travel along the beautiful bay of Kvarner to its popular resort, Opatija. After some free time, journey north to Postojna, home to one of the largest caves in Europe. Tour this fantastic subterranean world by miniature electric train. Afterward, continue to Bled, beautifully set in the Julian Alps. Dinner and overnight.
Tue, Jul 28: Bled
Breakfast at your hotel. An Alpine lake surrounded by high peaks, Bled was "discovered" by travelers in the middle of the 19th century. Since then, a small town of hotels, villas, and restaurants has developed around the lake, turning Bled into a lively, all-seasons resort. A sightseeing tour features the charming town and the lakeshore and visits imposing Bled Castle, perched on a cliff high above the lake. Enjoy a scenic ride on a small rowing boat "Pletna" to the island in the middle of the lake. After disembarking the boat, visit the island's old church housing an impressive art collection. You will have some free time to enjoy the magnificent views from the island. Later, the boat will bring you back ashore. The balance of the day is at leisure. Dinner at your hotel. Overnight in Bled.
Wed, Jul 29: Bled - Oberammergau
After early breakfast we depart for Oberammergau. Upon arrival at Munich Airport, make your way to the baggage claim area and collect your luggage. Proceed to the arrival's hall, where you will be greeted by your tour guide and/or driver. Enjoy a picturesque ride through Bavaria arriving at your hotel in Oberammergau (or nearby). Time permitting walk the quaint streets of Oberammergau. The incredible 2,000 Oberammergau citizens are the actual actors, singers, instrumentalists and stage technicians. They are ordinary citizens who lead an everyday life. Later in the afternoon we will celebrate Mass followed by a welcome dinner and overnight.
Thu, Jul 30: Oberammergau - Passion Play: Performance Day
We will start our day by celebrating Mass. Then there will be some free time to relax and spend at your own leisure, before meeting to enjoy lunch together. After which we will make our way to the world-famous Passion Play Theatre, to attend what will be a performance of a lifetime - the 42nd Oberammergau Passion Play. The Play runs for approximately five and a half hours and is performed in two (2) Acts.
Act I will begin at 2:30 P.M. - 5:00 P.M. (Intermission: From 5:30 P.M. to 7:30 P.M. you will have dinner at a restaurant that is walking distance from the theatre)
Act II will begin at 8:00 P.M. and conclude at 10:30 P.M.
What makes this performance so extraordinary is how the Stage truly comes alive! Not only in the decoration of the Set and the performance of the Actors, but with real animals and birds playing under the open sky. There are thirty-six (36) main actors who are dressed in white costumes, with their supporting cast dressed in greyish blue. The actors do not wear makeup, as that is their natural hair. Every scene is real, and live, so for example: the actor who is tied to the cross has to stay in that position for more than one (1) hour In between each scene. There are "Living Tableaus" where the live actors perform intricate sets of the Old Testament. You can never describe the feeling you get, as you see these stories being performed right in front of you.
Fri, Jul 31: Oberammergau - Munich
After breakfast, we will depart the Oberammergau area to Munich. Munich is the capital of Bavaria, one of Germany's popular destinations. Upon arrival enjoy visiting many of Munich's top sites; Marienplatz with its world famous "Glockenspiel"; the twin-towered Frauenkirche (the Church of Our Lady), which serves as the cathedral of the Archdiocese of Munich . The Cathedral is widely considered a symbol of Munich. Celebrate Mass followed by free time for lunch and/or shopping. Dinner and overnight.
Sat, Aug 1: Return to the U.S.
Today we fondly say "auf wiedersehen" to Germany, we say farewell to our fellow pilgrims and new friends! Although it's an end of this journey, graces and blessings from our pilgrimage will last a lifetime.