Archaeological and Cultural Donation Projects

Far Horizons Donation Projects

One of the reasons that our travelers return to Far Horizons again and again is for the specially arranged private entrée events hosted by directors of archaeological and other scientific projects.

“I think your donation tradition is great and I enjoy the chance to meet archaeologists working in the field. I will always remember our visit to the earliest tombs near Abydos, Egypt with Dr. Guenter Dryer. Amazing!  And the Serapium! Both were on my first Far Horizons tour!” – Janet Braziel, frequent Far Horizons traveler

As a tour company that benefits from the cultural and natural riches of our destinations, we are aware that funding for science is an ongoing challenge. From the first Far Horizons trip in 1983 we have had a policy of donating to archaeological and other scientific projects. We are proud of this collaboration as it has created a long-standing bond with the academic community that opens doors for our groups to experience private viewings of the latest discoveries throughout the world.

Listed below are some of the programs that have been recipients of assistance.

 

EUROPE & TURKEY

 

England

Caerwent was originally the tribal capital of the Silures (Venta Silurum), and the impressive fourth-century walls built by the Romans still stand up to 17 feet high.

Caerleon was a Roman fortress built to control the River Nye. During excavations in 2011, a port was found that is only the second from Roman Britain to be discovered and excavated after London.

Binchester Roman Fort, or Vinovia, was most likely established around 79 AD to guard the crossing of the River Wear, the main Roman road between York, Hadrian’s Wall and Scotland.

Oxford’s Ashmolean Museum houses collections from ancient Egypt and Sudan that are among the most extensive in Britain, with approximately 50,000 objects representing every period of human occupation in the Nile Valley from prehistory to the 7th century AD.

Liverpool’s World Museum has an extensive collection covering archaeology, ethnology and the natural and physical sciences. Its Egyptian wing includes a ‘mummy room’, displaying 12 mummies, alongside some of the 16,000 artifacts from Ancient Egypt and Nubia.

The Garstang Museum of Archaeology in Liverpool has one of the most important collections of antiquities in the UK and reflects the long history of research into Archaeology at Liverpool University.

The British Museum’s permanent collection, numbering some 8 million works, is among the largest and most comprehensive collections in existence and originates from all continents, illustrating and documenting the story of human culture from its beginnings to the present.

Vindolanda existed before the Romans built Hadrian’s Wall but it ultimately became a garrison for the Wall and then continued on for hundreds of years after the Wall was abandoned by its Roman garrisons.

Far Horizons groups are hosted at all sites and museums listed by the project/museum directors.


Malta

The Malta Field School in Underwater Archaeology (in 2013 and 2014) was training students in underwater archaeology while studying Mellieha Bay, the northern most inlet on the island of Malta.

In 2014, the project director, Dr. Timmy Gambin gave a powerpoint presentation to our group about the findings that year.


Cyprus

The Cyprus American Archaeological Research Institute (CAARI) provides a center for the scholarly study of archaeology, history and culture in the Eastern Mediterranean.

Private reception and presentation with the institute’s archaeological staff/collaborators.


Sicily

Selinunte was one of the most important of the Greek colonies in Sicily, and contains five temples centered on an acropolis. Under the direction of Professor Clemente Marconi of the Institute of Fine Arts of New York University, architectural and archaeological investigation of the main urban sanctuary are being carried out.

Dr. Marconi and his students host our groups for an explanation of the work being accomplished.

The Bagli Anselmi Regional Archaeological Museum (of Marsala), part of the Archaeological Park of Lilybaeum, was chosen to house the Marsala Punic Warship as well as the archaeological remains illustrating the history of Lilybaeum and its environs, from Prehistory to the Middle Ages.

The study leader, Professor Emma Blake, will give the group a private, behind-the-scenes tour of the museum storeroom.


Italy

The British School in Rome (BSR) was established in 1912 as a research center for archaeology, history and the fine arts. Archaeology forms a major part of the BSR’s activities, and over the years we have supported and undertaken many projects throughout Italy.  On such project is the Portus Project, uncovering Imperial Rome’s ancient port.

Our group will be hosted for a private dinner and lecture at BSR while in Rome and will receive a private tour with archaeologists at Portus.

Volterra was an important city center for the Etruscans and recent excavations have uncovered a large Roman amphitheater dating from the 1st century BC.

The hypogeum of Clepsina in Cerveteri (a UNESCO World Heritage Site) consists of an underground room with frescoes, sketches and inscriptions, and a network of corridors and stairways.

Our group will receive private tours with archaeologists at both sites. 


Western Turkey

Hattusa was the capital of the Hittite civilization and is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Ephesus was an important Greco-Roman city, and was the location of the Temple to Artemis, one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World.

Troy, founded 5000 years ago, is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

These are the three most important ancient cities in the eastern Mediterranean, and at each the project directors give private tours of the excavations to our groups.


Eastern Turkey

Göbekli Tepe in eastern Turkey is older than Stonehenge by 6,000 years and may be the world’s oldest sacred sanctuary.

Ayanis is located on the eastern coast of the lake Van and was an important fortress of the ancient kingdom of Urartu.

The project directors give our groups private tours of the excavations.


Greece

Despotiko is an uninhabited islet in the center of the Cycladic islands where excavations have uncovered a previously unknown late Archaic sanctuary, possibly to Apollo. A great variety of archaeological finds links the isle to mainland Greece, the Eastern Mediterranean and even to Northern Africa.

Mycenae is a UNESCO World Heritage site, uncovered by Heinrich Schliemann, and one of the earliest examples of sophisticated citadel architecture. Surrounded by unbreachable fortification walls up to 46 feet wide, the city contained royal palaces and rich tombs.

The project directors at each site give our groups private tours of the excavations.


Scotland

Ness of Brodgar has made a huge splash in the news lately, including National Geographic. Located between the Ring of Brodgar and the Stones of Stenness in the Heart of Neolithic Orkney (a UNESCO World Heritage Site), it appears to have been a religous focus for a number of communities from all over Orkney.

The project director hosts our groups at Ness of Brodgar.


Ireland

Grassroots Archaeology is a community based project that aims to bring together professional expertise and local involvement to unearth the story of monuments that have been covered by urban development. One of their projects, Seagrange, is located within a heavily populated urban area and displays many features consistent with what is known as a Medieval Moated Site.

Black Friary Archaeological Project, the site of a 13th century, late medieval, Dominican Friary

Far Horizons’ study leader works at Seagrange.


Scandinavia

Drottningholm Palace is the private residence of the Swedish royal family.

Alta Petroglyphs contains rock art as old as 4,500 years ago

Tycho Brahe’s observatory on Ven Island

Ravning Bridge, constructed by the Vikings 1,000 years ago

Private viewings are arranged at each site.


MIDDLE EAST & ARABIA

 

Jordan

Eastern Badia Archaeological Project has been examining the eastern desert of Jordan (Maitland’s Mesa) since 2008 and is showing that the area was heavily used during the Late Neolithic period. Numerous stone structures, including tower tombs, smaller burial cairns, open ‘corrals’, and what may have been seasonal living quarters.

This project is co-directed by the leader of our tour to Jordan and includes a visit to Maitland’s Mesa.

The American Center of Oriental Research (ACOR) promotes research and publication across disciplines with a special emphasis on archaeology in the region. We will meet with ACOR Director, Barbara Porter, at the center where we will be given a private tour to see the Petra Papyri and hosted for cocktails. In Petra, we will meet with ACOR archaeologists to tour the Temple of the Winged Lions.


ASIA

 

China

Dunhuang Project is an international collaboration to make information and images of all manuscripts, paintings, textiles and artefacts from Dunhuang and archaeological sites of the Eastern Silk Road freely available on the Internet, including the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Mogao Caves.

The director and staff of Mogao Caves hosts our groups for lunch and an opening of caves that are closed to the public.


Cambodia

The Greater Angkor Project (GAP), an international collaboration of the University of Sydney (Australia), has shown that the temples of Angkor were surrounded by vast suburbs with an extensive road and canal network.

Heritage Watch, founded in 2003, is a non-profit organization dedicated to preserving the tangible and intangible cultural heritage of Southeast Asia. It has undertaken a diverse range of projects, including researching the illicit trade in antiquities, the looting of archaeological sites, and loss of historic architecture educating the public.

The Deputy Director of the GAP Project is a Far Horizons study leader. Our groups receive a private tour of the Conservation Warehouse in Siem Reap.


EGYPT & AFRICA

 

Egypt

Amarna was the capital city built by Egypt’s heretic king, Akhenaten, for his revolutionary religion that worshiped Aten, the sun god.

The Chicago House is a research institution founded as an extension of the University of Chicago in Luxor, Egypt in order to study the temple complexes in that city, which used to be the ancient capital Thebes of New Egypt.

The Epigraphic Survey was created to produce photographs and precise line drawings of the inscriptions and relief scenes on major temples and tombs at Luxor. It has expanded its program to include conservation, restoration, and site management.

The project directors give our groups private tours of their work, and our groups are invited guests at a cocktail party at the University of Chicago’s Chicago House, hosted by the director and including archaeologists working in Luxor.


Sudan

El Kurru is part of the UNESCO World Heritage site of “Gebel Barkal and the Sites of the Napatan Region”. It was the burial place and royal city of many of the earliest Napatan Kings and Queens.

Kawa  was founded by the pharaoh Akhenaten in the 14th century BC.

Tombos was a village located at the third cataract of the Nile, and was an important quarrying site in the Pharaonic era

The project directors give our groups private tours of each site.

 


OCEANIA

 

Easter Island

Earthship Music School is a music school created by internationally acclaimed Rapanui concert pianist Mahani Teave with free classes for local children on Easter Island. Far Horizons groups will have a private concert by the students of the music school.

Easter Island Foundation was founded in 1989 to promote awareness of the island’s fragile heritage. This non-profit has helped create the William Mulloy Library on the island, provides annual scholarships for Rapanui students, provides grants for research, and has published books as well as a quarterly Rapa Nui Journal.

 


THE AMERICAS

 

Peru

Chankillo is a ceremonial center and solar observatory located in a river valley of the north coast plain, and on the UNESCO World Heritage Tentative List. Two thousand years ago, towers were built on the top of a low ridge to observe the movement of the sun through the solar year, solstice to solstice.

Sacsayhuaman is a huge fortress on the outskirts of Cusco where Dr. Alexei Vranich is creating a virtual reconstruction of the monument, and geomatic studies to understand the Inca hydraulic system and a means to provide recommendation for its conservation.

The Machu Picchu Museum (Casa Concha) houses the archaeological objects found by Hiram Bingham at Machu Picchu, recently brought from United States.

El Brujo, where the tomb of the first female governor was found.

Project directors and archaeological staff host us at each site.

Far Horizons was responsible for building a school bathroom in San Jose de Moro.

 


Mexico

Associacion Na Bolom was, for 45 years, the home of archaeologist Frans Blom and his photographer wife, Gertrude Duby-Blom. Today this 19th century house is a museum, library, and research center for the study and support of indigenous cultures in Chiapas, Mexico.

 


Honduras

Copan Association implements projects designed to educate, enhance the cultural history experience of visitors, and preserve Honduran heritage for future generations.

 


Guatemala

Waka’ is an ancient city in Guatemala that has made news recently with the discovery of the tomb of a ‘warrior-queen‘ from the Kaan, or Snake, family that warred with Tikal.

La Corona is another recently excavated Maya city, now known to be the mysterious Site Q.

Holmul archeologists have recently unearthed a well preserved huge stucco frieze with traces of polychrome paint still visible. The work is being done under the Maya Archaeological Initiative.

The project directors host our groups at all three sites.


Belize

The Belize Zoo is settled upon 29 acres of tropical savanna and exhibits over 170 animals, representing over 45 species, all native to Belize. The Zoo keeps animals which were orphaned, rescued, born at the zoo, rehabilitated animals, or sent to The Belize Zoo as donations from other zoological institutions.

Xunantunich is a Maya site dating to A.D. 800-900, at a time when much of the rest of the Maya world was collapsing. The tallest pyramid, towering over the surrounding countryside, displays a splendid 30-foot long stucco frieze.

Cahal Pech is a late, Pre-classic Maya city where temples and two separate ball courts display fine examples of Maya craftsmanship, suggesting this site was a royal hilltop residence.

The director of the zoo and the archaeological staff at the Maya sites will give our groups private, behind-the-scenes tours.