Marian Shrines & Paris Pilgrimage
Spiritual Director: Msgr. Jamie Gigantiello
Spiritual Director: Msgr. David Cassato
April 25 - May 7, 2023
Lisbon · Santarem · Fatima · Salamanca · Alba de Tormes · Avila · Burgos · Loyola · Lourdes · Paris · Landing Beaches (American Cemetery)
Your trip includes
- Round-trip airfare from your desired Airport
- All airport taxes & fuel surcharges
- One way flight from Lourdes to Paris or Lyon
- Hotel accommodations (or similar) in double occupancy
- ~ 1 nights: Marques de Pombal, Lisbon
- ~ 2 nights: Santa Maria Jardim, Fatima, Portugal
- ~ 1 nights: Hotel Abba Fonseca, Salamanca, Spain
- ~ 1 nights: Hotel Abba Burgos Hotel, Burgos, Spain
- ~ 2 nights: Hotel Moderne, Lourdes, France
- ~ 4 nights: Mercure Paris Alesia, Paris
- Transfers as per itinerary
- Breakfast and Dinner daily
- Wine/Mineral Water with Dinners
- Transportation by air-conditioned motor coach
- Assistance of a professional local Catholic Guide
- Sightseeing and admissions fees as per itinerary
- Whisper Headsets
- Luggage handling (at Hotels - 1 piece per person)
- Tips to Hotel Staff, Restaurants, and Luggage Handlers
- Mass daily & Spiritual activities
- Lunches, Beverages not mentioned, Tips to your Guide & Driver, Individual transfers.
Day 1: Tuesday - April 25 - Depart for Lisbon
Make your way to your local Airport, where you will board your overnight flight(s). Your meals are served on board.
Day 2: Wednesday - April 26 - Arrive in Lisbon
Upon landing at the Lisbon Portela Airport, you will make your way to the baggage claim area and collect your luggage. Then, you will proceed to the Arrival's Hall where you will be greeted by your tour guide and/or driver. You will be escorted to the vehicle which will take you on a sightseeing tour of the coastal city of Lisbon. This tour begins at the city's oldest cathedral, the Lisbon Cathedral. The tour continues on to St. Jerome's Monastery, built to give thanks to the Virgin Mary for guiding Vasco da Gama on his voyage that linked Europe and Asia. The next stop is St. Anthony's Church; although the patron Saint of Lost Things is known as St. Anthony of Padua (Italy), he was originally born in Lisbon, Portugal. Next, you will visit the Belem Quarter that contains the iconic entry way to the Lisbon harbor, the Belem Tower. The tour continues as you will have the opportunity to view the "25th of April Bridge", inspired by the Golden Gate Bridge of San Francisco, California. Our tour culminates with a visit to the Discoveries Monument, a memorial commemorating the Great Explorers who, as a result of their explorations, brought Portugal to a standing of wealth and power during the Age of Discovery. In addition to these sites, your tour will include a view of the Basilica of the Star, the Rossio Square, Commerce Square, and the Marquee of Pomba Square. After a fun-filled day of sightseeing, you will enjoy a welcoming dinner and an overnight at your hotel.
Day 3: Thursday - April 27 - Lisbon - Santarem - Fatima
Today, your group will travel about forty-five miles north to the old city of Santarem. In Santarem, your group will visit and attend Mass at the Church of St. Stephen, which holds (13th century) Eucharistic Miracle: Arrive in Fatima for check-in, followed by a visit to the Hamlet of Aljustrel, the home of the three shepherd children. Visit of the Parish Church and Fatima Parish Cemetery before returning to the hotel for dinner and an overnight.
Day 4: Friday - April 28 - Fatima
Today will surely be a memorable experience, as you pray and meditate upon one of Our Blessed Mother's apparition sites. Continue with a visit to the stunning neoclassical church, the Basilica of Our Lady of the Rosary. View the monument that commemorates the Sacred Heart of Jesus, in the square. Continue with a visit to the Holy Trinity Basilica. After free time for lunch, we will experience Christ's unconditional love by participating in the Stations of the Cross along the Via Sacra. The "Sacred Way" marks the path taken by the shepherd children of Fatima to their first apparition with Our Lady. It is composed of fifteen small chapels in commemoration of the Passion of Our Lord. The fifteenth station, the Resurrection, can be found close to the Chapel of Calvary, dedicated to St. Stephen, King of Hungary. The day ends with a visit to Valinhos, the site of Our Lady's August 1917 apparition and the first and third apparition of the Angel. Your night will conclude with private devotions, and a candlelight procession, requested by Our Lady (1917). Enjoy dinner and a comfortable night's rest in Fatima.
Day 5: Saturday - April 29 - Fatima - Salamanca
Depart Fatima and head to Salamanca, following a full breakfast at the hotel. Salamanca is a city in the Castilla y Leon region, and is known for its large University, the oldest in Spain that is still active, along with its prominent culture. Our walking tour will bring us by the most noteworthy sites such as; the grand Plaza Mayor, an iconic square filled with food, shopping and city events; La Clerecia, a church and college of the Jesuit Order that was constructed in the seventeenth century; La Casa de las Conchas, currently a public library but also, a monument noted and decorated by shells, which symbolizes the ever-famous pilgrimage to Santiago (El Camino); the University of Salamanca, the oldest University in Spain and the third oldest in Europe; the Roman Bridge, extends along the River Tormes, is a national monument and among one of Salamanca's sturdiest bridges; La Iglesia de San Marcos, constructed in the Romanesque style and contains breathtaking paintings that portray many scenes of Our Lady's life; La Iglesia de San Martin, a church devoted to St. Martin de Porres, who is the patron saint of mixed-race people and all those seeking interracial harmony. Visit the inside of the two joint Salamanca Cathedrals (old and new), one of which is a Romanesque style and the other a Gothic style. Following this eventful day, you will return to your hotel for a delicious meal with your group and an overnight at your hotel in Salamanca.
Day 6: Sunday - April 30 - Salamanca - Alba de Tormes - Avila - Burgos
This morning, after breakfast, you will board the bus and enjoy a short transfer to the village of Alba de Tormes. This town is home to the Carmelite Monastery that Saint Teresa founded in 1571. Upon arrival in Alba de Tormes, your group will celebrate Mass at this Monastery where the saint died and was buried. Following Mass, you will have the opportunity to visit the museum dedicated to St. Teresa of Avila, which also holds her incorrupt heart and left arm. Your group will enjoy free time for lunch on your own, before continuing to the medieval city of Avila. Upon arrival in Avila, you will immediately notice the perfectly preserved eleventh-century walls that surround the old town. The conservation of architecture in this city, to which St. Teresa was born, deems its shrines, convents and churches necessary to visit on any Catholic pilgrimage. The Cathedral de Avila encompasses the Romanesque, Gothic and Renaissance styles of its time, within its artwork and architecture. La Basilica de San Vicente in Avila, stands on the site of the martyrdom of St. Vincent. Visit the Incarnation Convent, where St. Teresa became a nun. Saint Therese convinced Saint John of the Cross to reform the male Carmelite order, the reform she started when she met Saint John in Medina del Campo. After walking in the footsteps of St. Teresa, continue your journey to Burgos. Upon arrival in the historic capital of Old Castile, enjoy dinner. Following dinner, you will have the opportunity to explore the city of Burgos, and admire its magnificent limestone, gothic-style Cathedral. Late this evening, you will return to your hotel for a restful overnight.
Day 7: Monday - May 1 - Burgos - Loyola - Lourdes
Following breakfast, transfer from Burgos to Loyola to visit the birthplace of St. Ignatius, founder of the Jesuit Order. St. Ignatius dedicated himself to becoming a soldier of the Christian faith, and as a result of many tribulations, he wrote the ever-famous Spiritual Exercises. In Loyola, you will see the 17th century Basilica that is dedicated to this remarkable Saint. The Basilica is part of a series of buildings that surrounds the "Holy House," the birthplace of St. Ignatius. When you visit these Holy places, you will also have the opportunity to pray at the most venerated room, where St. Ignatius prayed and began his conversion. After meditating on the life of this founder of the Jesuit Order, you will enjoy free time for lunch and board the bus for the next destination. We will continue to Lourdes with a spectacular view of the Pyrenees Mountains. Upon arrival in Lourdes, you will check-in to your hotel and enjoy a splendid dinner and peaceful overnight.
Day 8: Tuesday - May 2 - Lourdes
Wake up in a small town that is nestled within the Pyrenees Mountains. During your time in Lourdes, you will pray and meditate in yet another site of Our Lady's apparitions. Our Lady first appeared to Bernadette in 1858, and announced herself as "The Immaculate Conception", near the Grotto of Massabielle. During the first two apparitions, little Bernadette prayed the Rosary with Our Lady and left without any exchange of words. During the following apparitions, Our Lady emphasized God's love for us, penance and the necessity of performing acts of penance for sinners. Throughout your time in Lourdes, you will have the opportunity to attend Mass at the Grotto, where Our Lady appeared to Bernadette; watch a video presentation that explains, in detail, the story of Lourdes; drink water from the miraculous spring that has healed many; and submerge yourself in the healing baths. Additionally, you will have the opportunity to experience Christ's unconditional love, as you meditate upon the "life size" Stations of the Cross that overlook the Grotto of Massabielle. Also, while in Lourdes, you will walk in and meditate upon the footsteps of St. Bernadette. Your group will have the opportunity to see Boly Mill, the birthplace of St. Bernadette, and the "Cachot," an abandoned prison where Bernadette's impoverished family lived. Each evening following dinner, you will have an opportunity to attend the candlelight procession and the Rosary before a restful overnight.
Day 9: Wednesday - May 3 - Lourdes - Paris
Today, you will enjoy breakfast before departing for Pau or Lourdes airport for your short flight to Paris. Upon arrival in Paris, visit and attend Mass at the magnificent, Sacre Coeur Basilica that stands atop Montmartre Hill. The Basilica, dedicated to the Sacred Heart of Jesus, was originally built in 1914 as an act of penance for the infidelity that France was experiencing during that time. While on your visit, in addition to the extraordinary artwork and architecture that forms the Basilica, you will see the beautiful mosaic of the Risen Christ, and the remarkable Grand Organ. Celebrate Mass at the Crypt that contains the Tombs of many notable Cardinals. Time permitting, you may have the opportunity during your free time to ascend a staircase to the Dome where you may take in a breathtaking panoramic view of the city of Paris. Following this visit, you will have time to walk over to a famous square known as Place du Tertre. This is an "Artist's Square" in the heart of Montmartre. It is world famous for its painters, cafes, and ambiance. Here you will have time to grab a lunch on your own. Then you will return to the bus that will take you to your Hotel for check-in and some free time before you gather for dinner and overnight.
Day 10: Thursday - May 4 - Landing Beaches (American Cemetery) - Paris
Upon waking up in Paris and enjoying breakfast, you will board your bus and transfer to the Normandy Landing beaches. The Normandy Landings were the landing operations on Tuesday, June 6, 1944 (termed "D-Day") of the Allies' invasion of Normandy during World War II. The largest seaborne invasion in history, the operation began the liberation of German-occupied northwestern Europe from Nazi control, and contributed to the Allies' victory on the Western Front. Continue to visit The Normandy American Cemetery and Memorial, a World War II cemetery and memorial in Colleville-sur-Mer, Normandy, France, that honors American troops who died in Europe during World War II. Many of the brave American soldiers of World War II are buried here and, it is encouraged to say a prayer in thanksgiving for their courage. It is here you will celebrate Mass, followed by some time to walk through the cemetery and pay your respects to all those who never made it home. Continue back to Paris where we will enjoy dinner, and then a restful nights sleep.
Day 11: Friday - May 5 - Paris
Today, you will enjoy a full sightseeing tour of Paris. After breakfast, you will visit and celebrate Mass at the Shrine of Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal, where you will view the incorrupt body of St. Catherine Laboure. The Saint's guardian angel led her to the chapel, where the Blessed Virgin Mary appeared to her. During apparitions, Our Lady repeatedly instructed the making and purpose of the Miraculous Medal, as well as the green scapular. According to the Blessed Virgin Mary, those who wear the Miraculous Medal and scapular will receive special protection and abundant graces. Following your prayerful and reflective experience at this elegant chapel, you will begin your sightseeing tour of Paris. After Mass, we will walk to Saint Vicent de Paul Church. Our panoramic sightseeing tour, via motor coach, for your to view the most recognizable symbol of the city of Paris, the Eiffel Tower. Historically, the Tower's original intent was to commemorate the centenary of the French Revolution, but, later assisted in advancements in meteorology, telegraphy during World War I, radio, and television. Pass by Invalides, the L'Arch de Triomphe, a monument that symbolizes gratitude for those who fought for France. This monument stands at the West end of the Champ-Elysees, one of the world's most famous boulevards and another one of our stops on the sightseeing tour. We will make a stop at La Madeleine, with the statue of Mary Magdalene carried to heaven by angels. Due to the tragic fire at Notre Dame Cathedral on April 15, 2019, Pilgrims will not be able to enter the Cathedral for the near future. Pilgrims will still have the opportunity to view the Cathedral from outside, and we expect the sacred relics to be on display in a nearby church or museum. Then continue and pass by the Opera and the ever famous, Louvre Museum.* This Museum is one of the finest in the world and contains a number of pieces that truly emanate not only French art, but also, European culture. Your fun-filled, busy day ends with a lovely meal and a very comfortable overnight.
Day 12: Saturday - May 6 - Paris (Free Day)
Today, you will have the entire day to spend at your own leisure. Feel free to make your way into the Louvre or the D'Orsay Museum. You can also shop down the famous Champs-Elysees Avenue or Haussmann Boulevard, or stop by a local cafe before taking in a tour of Palais Garnier (Opera House). You could even take a trip outside of Paris and visit the Palace of Versailles. Feel free to speak with your Guide for any suggestions, or to arrange any transfers and reservations you need. Return in the evening for your Farewell dinner and overnight.
Optional Day Tour to Lisieux: Additional $170 per person based on minimum 20 Pilgrims Depart for Lisieux in the early morning. According to Pope Pius X, St. Therese of Lisieux was the "greatest Saint of modern times." Her extraordinary love for God and service to humanity will come alive, as you walk in the great Saint's footsteps. During your visit, you will see the beautiful Basilica of St. Therese, and the magnificent mosaics and stained glass that are contained within. Celebrate Mass here, followed by stopping by her childhood home which is now a Museum. Return back to Paris in time for the Farewell dinner. (Approximately: 7 Hours. 2 1/2 Hours each way driving - plus Touring and Mass)
Day 13: Sunday - May 7 - Return Flights Home
After an early breakfast and heartfelt farewells, transfer to Charles de Gaul Airport for return flight(s) home.*206 Tours Disclaimer:
Occasionally local religious and national holidays, weather, traffic conditions and other events may necessitate changes in the sequence of events or the missing of certain events/places. Though every effort will be made to follow the itinerary, it should be considered as an indication, rather than a contract of events and places to be visited.