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Publisher's Summary

The shimmering turquoise waters and lost worlds of the Aegean await you. Grab your travel hat and join us for a unique cultural journey to the dramatic landscapes of Greece and Turkey - to dazzling ancient cities, majestic empires, and magical treasures of history. 

This is a land of gods and heroes. Here great myths came to life and epic battles were fought, and the wondrous remains of ancient civilizations still call to you from across the centuries. 

In The Great Tours: Greece and Turkey, from Athens to Istanbul, award-winning Professor John R. Hale of the University of Louisville is your guide to the fabulous civilizations of the Greeks, Romans, Byzantines, and Ottomans, and to the natural wonders and idyllic landscapes that surround them. 

These 24 richly enjoyable lectures give you the chance to experience these important sites and cultures through the eyes of an expert archaeologist and scholar, whose knowledge and depth of insight go far beyond any ordinary travel narrative. In each site, you explore the critical history and culture that defined it and the ways in which it influenced our modern world. These lectures offer both a rich resource for travelers preparing to visit these distant lands and a multilevel cultural journey that can be enjoyed just as well from the comfort of home. 

PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying PDF will be available in your Audible Library along with the audio. 

©2011 The Great Courses (P)2011 The Teaching Company, LLC

What listeners say about Great Tours: Greece and Turkey, from Athens to Istanbul

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Annoying Background Music

Love John Hale!! His performance does not need to be enhanced by an annoying soundtrack. I found the background music very distracting.

5 people found this helpful

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Music was a big distraction

Great content and narration, but the unnecessary music and annoying sound effects detracted from the performance.

1 person found this helpful

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Great idea, poorly implemented

First, any shortcomings of this presentation are not the fault of Hale. He's clearly well-informed and generally presents the material without judgement (the area is home to contrasting cultures and religions) although there's clearly a positive spin. He is best when describing specific, finite sites rather than large areas. For example, when I visited Troy, I was disappointed, there seemed little to see and what I did see was confusing, making little sense. I wish I'd had Hale's lecture: he walks a visitor through the Troy site putting the site into context and explaining what you see.

And seeing is where these lectures fall short. The accompanying PDF is mainly just bullet points of the lecture. A map, particularly one that highlights the sites Hale discusses, would be very helpful. Similarly, photos would greatly augment the lectures. Hale clearly emphasizes some people and places, presumably the Great Courses video version includes visual materials. Lacking the visual content, the lectures are often hard to follow.

Finally, as an archaeologist, Hale touches only on historical and ancient cultural sites. With rare exceptions, there's no sense of the modern day. I would likely only purchase this title were I planning a trip to the region and needed ideas about historical places to visit - although with the available guidebooks and online resources, this title would still be far down the list.

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Great Tour

The Tour is great is tons of fascinating information. I think this is audio from a video course. It is still good without the video showing tour pictures. The one slightly annoying thing is the frequent sound effects that I guess they used when changing pictures on the video. I listened on my phone and thought I was getting notifications, even when I realized what was going on it was still distracting.

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A fascinating tour!

I loved listening whilst taking my nightly bath. The narrator is a skilled teacher who loves his work. It shows.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 06-18-21

An adventurer from my arm chair

A wonderful narrator taking me with him to the Mediterranean. Great voice and insights into the sights of Greece and Turkey. Now to save up to get on the plane and see them for myself.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 03-12-20

Great book

Interesting content, pleasant narrator. I didn't mind the music too much. I currently live in Istanbul and the book has given me a lot of information I couldn't have found elsewhere.