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With a great historic past and incomparable art treasures, Venice is renowned as one of the world’s great cities. Its 118 islands are separated by more than 150 canals and spanned by 400 bridges. During Venice's artistic golden age many magnificent structures were erected to create world-famous masterpieces. One of the best sightseeing routes is along Grand Canal, with many palaces lining the famous waterway. St. Mark’s Square offers access to some of Venice’s most famed attractions - St. Mark’s Basilica and Doge’s Palace. From Piazza San Marco, a maze of narrow streets are lined with shops, cafés and restaurants. A popular pastime is sitting at an outdoor café facing the square while people-watching and letting the whole marvelous scenario unfold. Venice’s Murano, Burano and Torcello Islands comprise an area famous as home of Venice’s glass-blowing industry and known for their charm, skilled lace-making and medieval monuments. Relax on a gondola ride, see art treasures in museums, churches and palaces, and have a sumptuous meal - all in this incomparable city.
Koper is the main Slovenian port and the entrance to the inland of the Central Europe. It is located on the "top" of Istria. Koper was an island till the 19th century. Later the town and the island were connected with the mainland. Old town centre boasts with the rich architecture and cultural monuments.
Zadar's many promenadors on the shore have a feeling they are on board the starboards of which are being laved by the waves carried by the warm zephyrus. Zadar is a town on the seaside. It is floating on the reef and closing from times a gap between itself and land, a harbor which was a pulse of its history. All the maritime and land ways led to this harbour and on their crossings the ancient marketplace was made, which became the origin of the Town, the very springwell of its life.
Split, the largest Croatian city on the Adriatic coast, is the heart of Dalmatia. The old town is built around the harbor on the south side of a high peninsula sheltered from the open sea by many islands. Split achieved fame when the Roman emperor Diocletian (245-313), noted for his persecution of early Christians, had his retirement palace built here from 295 to 305. Since 1945 Split has grown into a major industrial city with large apartment-block housing areas. Much of old Split remains, however, and this combined with its exuberant nature makes it one of the most fascinating cities in Europe.
Classed as a world heritage treasure by UNESCO, Dubrovnik is a place of ancient streets lined with stone palaces, Venetian-style buildings and bell towers. The city is enclosed by stone walls, and the highlight is a leisurely walk atop these massive walls for a great view of the city and the sea. Entering Dubrovnik, you are greeted by an impressive pedestrian promenade, the Placa, which extends before you all the way to the clock tower at the other end of town. The Orlando Tower here is a favorite meeting place. Just inside the city walls near the Pile Gate is the Franciscan Monastery housing the third-oldest functioning pharmacy in Europe, operating since 1391. For a fantastic panorama of the city, take a cable car ride to the summit of the 1,340-foot Mount Srdj.
Take a step back in time and visit the old town of Kotor, one of the best-preserved medieval towns in this part of the Mediterranean. The asymmetric structure of the narrow streets and squares, combined with the awesome monuments of medieval architecture, contributed to Kotor being placed on UNESCO’s “World’s natural and cultural inheritance” list. From ancient fortification systems surrounding the city to 12th century cathedrals, Kotor is a dream come true for those who revel in history. Entrance to town from the Gurdic spring, consists of 3 separate gates, built from the 13th, 16th and 18th centuries. The Cathedral of St. Tryphon is one of the most visited and impressive churches in the city. According to some texts, the original church was erected in the 8th century and rebuilt in 1166. Two earthquakes, one in 1667 and one in 1979 seriously damaged the cathedral and it continues to be restored to this day. The city is breathtaking in every respect and only a visit will truly reveal all it has to offer.
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Destroyed several times by eruptions from Mt Etna and an earthquake in 1693, this busy port, situated along the northeast coast of Sicily, on the Gulf of Catania, is now graced by wide boulevards, lush parks and spacious piazzas. Choose from the medieval power of the 11th-century cathedral and the Castello Ursino, the Baroque fantasy of San Nicolo, or return to the ancient origins of the city with a visit to the Greek theater. Just a short drive up the coast are the Greek glories of Taormina, with unforgettable views of Mt. Etna.
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The Balearics are comprised of 16 islands; the three principal ones are Mallorca, Ibiza and Menorca. Lying just 60 miles off the Spanish mainland, the islands’ lush and rugged landscape combined with an extremely mild, sunny climate prove irresistible. The Balearics boast cosmopolitan resorts with lively nightlife and plenty of sports activities. Palma de Majorca is the capital of the archipelago. A cosmopolitan city with sophisticated shops and restaurants, it also offers buildings of spectacular Moorish and gothic architecture. Museo de Mallorca housed in the Palacio Ayamans boasts an interesting collection of Moorish, medieval and 18th- to 19th-century art. Those who wish to explore the northern end of the island will enjoy the dramatic land and seascape of Cabo Formentor at the end of a long, narrow peninsula. A winding road with magnificent views leads to the luxury Hotel Formentor, beautifully situated above the bay. The lighthouse of Cabo Formentor is the most northerly point on Majorca.
Ibiza, often called the White Island for its typical architecture, became a major center of touristical attraction during the 1960s, being then famous for its "Hippie-Culture" and nudist beaches. Today Ibiza has offerings for families and older visitors, but there are the young ones who are attracted by the island's rollicking nightlife, which already starts in the afternoon, at the beaches and in the center of town, to continue until dawn in the numerous discotheques. Behind the beaches and in the island's interior, is a pure and simple Mediterranean culture, and remains of populations which inhabited Ibiza thousands of years ago, as for instance the famous wall-paintings of Ses Fontelles.
Valencia is one of the biggest, liveliest cities in Spain. It is located at the Mediterranean sea with beaches right in its heart that offer every kind of sports. With its active nightlife and various cultural offerings, Valencia is one of the most dynamic cities in Spain. One of the most famous buildings in Valencia is the Cathedral and its tower named, "El Miquelet" (Little Michael) which was built between 1381 and 1424. Try Spain's most famous food right where it was born: "Paella Valenciana". Valencia is the city where "El Cid", Spain's national hero, fought against the Moors, and popular festivals in the city and many villages around still remind of this epoch.
Barcelona, the self-confident and progressive capital of Spain, is a tremendous place to be. Though it boasts outstanding Gothic and Art Nouveau buildings, and some great museums – most notably those dedicated to Picasso and Catalan art – it is above all a place where there's enjoyment simply in walking the streets, stopping in at bars and cafés, drinking in the atmosphere. A thriving port and the most prosperous commercial centre in Spain, it has a sophistication and cultural dynamism way ahead of the rest of the country. In part this reflects the city's proximity to France, whose influence is apparent in the elegant boulevards and imaginative cooking. But Barcelona has also evolved an individual and eclectic cultural identity, most perfectly and eccentrically expressed in the architecture of Antoni Gaudí. Scattered as Barcelona's main sights may be, the greatest concentration of interest is around the old town (La Ciutat Vella). These cramped streets above the harbor are easily manageable, and far more enjoyable, on foot. Start, as everyone else does, with the Ramblas.
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Rates are cruise only, per person, based on double occupancy. Taxes, Fees and Port Expenses of $182.25 additional for all guests. Rates are subject to availability and may change without notice. Restrictions may apply.
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