Mediterranean Cruises - a journey to the great civilizations...
Mediterranean cruises take you to very heart of the ancient world, the Mediterranean Sea.
Cruising the Med provides a treasure-trove of destinations, from great cities of antiquity to tiny harbors unspoiled and little changed in centuries.
Ships offering Mediterranean itineraries are often as diverse as their destination, ranging from the largest mega-ships to the small romantic and intimate luxury vessels.
The length of a Mediterranean cruise can vary from one week to three weeks or more.
"...a picnic on a gigantic scale"
declared Mark Twain about his Mediterranean Cruise experience on board a steamer from New York in 1867!
From Portugal and Spain through France, Italy, Croatia and Greece to Turkey and Egypt, Mediterranean cruise ships spend a long, leisurely season exploring lost civilizations and colorful cultures that thrive today beneath the Mediterranean sun.
The Mediterranean Sea is surrounded by three continents and over a dozen countries. Mediterranean cruises provide ports of call ranging from grand cities to charming romantic islands. And getting to Europe is easy as there are plenty of airlines servicing port cities who offering a variety of flights at all levels from first class to economy.
Must Visit Places in the Mediterranean
Muslim culture and Western architecture blend in this popular Morrocan resort town. Shop for souvenirs made by local artisans or simply spend the afternoon relaxing on the shores of its endless beaches.
With its beautiful boulevards and pleasant shopping streets, Alicante is one of the most well-known towns on the Costa Blanca. The shoreline of Alicante owes its name to the white-sand beaches stretching for several miles.
This ancient city was named after Athena, the Goddess of Wisdom. See the spectacular Parthenon on the Acropolis or travel to scenic Cape Sounion to explore the Temple of Poseidon.
AZORES ISLANDS (Ponta Delgada)
Cavernous crater lakes and impressive sea cliffs shaped by hardened black lava cover the landscape of the nine Azores Islands. Often described as the tip of the lost continent of Atlantis, this Portuguese archipelago is a sight to behold.
Browse the shops on the winding streets of Las Ramblas, spend the day admiring Picasso’s early works at the Picasso Museum or visit Gaudi’s famous La Sagrada Familia — a worldwide symbol of Barcelona.
Experience the life of the rich and famous on Cannes’ chic beaches. Stroll the Boulevard de la Croisette or venture to Monte Carlo, home to the Grand Casino and Monaco’s Royal Palace.
Browse the open-air markets of Marrakech, or visit Mohamed V Square in Casablanca and the picturesque white tombs of the Marabout.
Admire the colorful gardens alongside the Achilleion Palace, view the coffin of St. Spyridon, the island’s patron saint, discover the Venetian architecture or spend the day lazing on the sand of a sun-drenched beach.
Napoleon Bonaparte was born in Corsica, a land that is equal parts beautiful, wild, rugged and still a bit old-fashioned. From Propriano, explore Filitosa and enjoy the great wine of this region.
Visit the artistic wonders of Florence with a trip to the Uffizi Museum and the Galleria dell’Accademia. Venture to Pisa to catch a glimpse of its famed Leaning Tower.
Explore Europa Point and St. Michael’s Cave, or visit the famous Barbary apes as you discover the natural beauty of this rocky peninsula.
See Turkey’s most impressive sights, including the Blue Mosque, St. Sophia — one of the three largest churches in the world — and the Topkapi Palace Museum.
Discover ancient Greece as you wander the site of the original Olympic Games and the Pediments of the Temple of Zeus — one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World.
KUSADASI — (Ephesus)
From the bustling harbor of Kusadasi you can journey to the ruins of Ephesus, St. John’s Basilica and the Shrine of the Virgin Mary.
Stroll down the cobblestoned streets of the Alfama District, window shop in the Baixa or tour the riverside district of Belem in this beautiful city.
Explore Mallorca for its sun, sea and sand. Or venture deeper to its dramatic Gothic architecture, hilltop villages, olive groves and hidden beaches.
Prepare for a picnic from the bounty of an open-air market, and pick from an array of quaint villages to serve as your backdrop. Sip wine at a streetside café in Avignon or browse the bustling Aix-en-Provence.
Experience the glamour of Monte Carlo as you wander the chic shops, colorful gardens and seaside landscapes of one of the wealthiest towns in all of Europe. The Grand Casino is a must-see.
A Mediterranean cruise to this tiny Greek island (only 35 sq miles) is colorful and alluring with showcasing beautiful white-washed facades.
The town's waterfront is lined with shops, cafes and tavernas. The south coast has heavenly beaches, all a short cab or bus ride from the town.
The archeological site of Delos is on an adjacent island.
Let the wind blow through your hair on an Amalfi Coastal drive tour from Naples. Visit Pompeii and wander amongst the ruins. The enchanting Isle of Capri brings opportunities to bask in the sun and walk through cobblestoned streets.
Medieval streets, beaches and quaint villages envelop this Greek paradise — the largest of the Dodecanese Islands. Spend your day perusing the Acropolis of Lindos or Rhodes’ Old Town.
Make a wish and throw three coins into the Trevi Fountain, visit the Vatican and the Sistine Chapel or take in the dramatic Colosseum — the choice is yours.
This scenic and inspirational island is known for its white-washed buildings clinging to the cliffs. Journey to the ruins of ancient Akrotiri, known as the Pompeii of Greece.
Medieval architecture and the unspoiled coastline of Costa Verde are the hallmarks of this Italian island. Tour the beaches and grottoes around Alghero, or take in the traditional culture of Nuoro Province.
Dazzling Seville reveals its charm as you wander its narrow streets and small squares. Bullfighting and flamenco make this town famous as do major sights such as Alcazar Palace.
Get caught up in the magic of Venice as you glide down the Grand Canal in a gondola. Admire St. Mark’s Square and the Doge’s Palace. Enjoy a glass of wine at a waterfront café or venture to nearby Murano for a colorful piece of Venetian glass — the perfect memento.
Spend the day along the shores of this
quaint village or make the pilgrimage
to Santiago de Compostela, one of
Spain’s national monuments. Ripe with
architectural wonders, this holy city is
home to La Plaza del Obradoiro, Rajoy
Palace and Gelmirez Palace.
Helpful Books for Mediterranean Cruises
Did You Know?.CLIA (Cruise Lines International Association) 62 cruise line members represent more than 90 percent of global cruise capacity, with 482,000 berths on CLIA Member ships. With more than 22 million people cruising worldwide each year, the cruise industry will invest $25 billion to launch 55 new ships between 2015 and 2020. In 2015, the industry will introduce six new oceangoing cruise ships and 16 new river cruise ships.
Top 2014 Cruise Trends (CLIA)
Rebound in luxury cruising (luxury category ships, onboard upgrades) based on an improving economy and increased consumer confidence
Multigenerational and celebration travel increase for all passenger source markets with larger sized family as well as social/ affinity groups traveling together
Continued development and availability of technology to facilitate and lower the cost of onboard communications as well as to provide more efficient passenger servicing
Expectation of first-time passenger growth driven by the 95 million Millennial generation based on population size and positive experiences cruising with their parents
Cruise lines offering more all-inclusive options and packaging in accommodations, services and amenities for increased ease in booking and ship enjoyment
Cruises increasingly attracting consumers seeking active vacations with extreme excursions, longer stays in ports for sightseeing and high-energy onboard facilities
Seeing the world in comfort and ease, especially exotic locations, will continue to drive new itinerary creation and cruise ship deployment
Hot destinations for 2014 according to CLIA cruise line members include: Trans Pacific, World Cruises, U.S. Rivers, South America, Antarctic, Middle East, Canada/New England, Africa and Exotic Rivers