Explore the shores of Italy, Croatia and Montenegro, discovering the charm of Venice, the magnificence of Rome, and the vast beauty of the Dalmatian Coast. Wander down the ancient cobblestone streets of Taormina, travel up the sparking fjord to Kotor and bask in the allure of small ship cruising as your small ship anchors in the heart of Old Town Dubrovnik while larger ships only pass by. From remarkable small ports such as Rovinj to timeless cities like Venice and Rome, discover the Mediterranean’s most charming and historic destinations in one incomparable voyage.
In this enchanting city the past and present intersect in perfect harmony. Casually intermingled among ancient ruins and majestic cathedrals are the trappings of a modern metropolis: Skyscrapers,cafes, boutiques selling designer footwear. But of course what you seek first in the heart of Rome is its breathtaking history. A good place to begin is the Vatican, with its Sistine Chapel and St. Peter’s Basilica. Works by Bernini, Michelangelo, Caravaggio, and Raphael are just a few of those on display, any one of which is worth hours of contemplation. Then the ancient ruins—Colosseum, Forum, Circus Maximus. And of course the Trevi Fountain for the obligatory coins promising your return to the Eternal City.
UNESCO World Heritage Sites abound in Sorrento. Optional tours will take you to the archaeological areas of Pompeii and Torre Annunziata, or the 4th century B.C. city of Herculaneum. Perhaps your choice will be a boat ride to Positano, the legendary home of the Sirens. Perched on a terrace on the spectacular Amalfi Coast, Sorrento offers exceptional views of the Bay of Naples and Mount Vesuvius.
GIARDINI NAXOS, ITALY
Today you’ll discover one of Sicily’s jewels, the charming village of Giardini Naxos, nestled in one of the world’s most beautiful bays. An optional excursion to the popular hillside town of Taormina will be a highlight of your voyage — from the stunning setting of the iconic Greek Theater to the sparkling beaches along the Ionian Sea. Take a more adventurous tack and explore the UNESCO site of Mount Etna, Europe’s most active volcano.
This is one of Montenegro’s most beautiful bays, and the approach offers one breathtaking fjord-like view after another. Just when you’ve reached your fill of blues and greens, the bright red rooftops of the medieval Old Town come into view. The entire area has been proclaimed a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The charming streets of Old Town remain car free, filled with 12th century Baroque palaces and Romanesque churches. For a fresh perspective, climb to the fortress on the hill for a breathtaking vista.
While larger ships pass by, we anchor right beyond the famous walled city so you can admire its beauty with every glance. Tender ashore and step right into Old Town, a UNESCO site where no cars are allowed, just eons of history. Capture the exhilarating views on your camera — and in your memory. End your day at the Buza Café (if you can find it) watching bold divers leap off the cliffs into the crystalline sea.
Split welcomes you with open arms, Mediterranean style, and a bustling harbor lined with busy cafés. Beyond, looms stately Diocletian’s Palace a UNESCO World Heritage Site in the center of town. Within the palace walls, a majestic cathedral soars, surrounded by polished marble streets lined with every type of tempting shop. If you’re longing for a quiet respite, head for the western end of town for an easy stroll through a verdant mountain park. Or take an optional tour to Trogir, another UNESCO site.
Follow the savory aroma of sardines grilling to the colorful quay, or let your lust for leather lead you to the old town’s shops and 18th century buildings. In ancient Silves, once a Moorish capital, the castle and cathedral are right next to each other in town. How thoughtful of them to make sightseeing so easy.
No other sea approach in the Adriatic raises goose bumps like Venice, where the entire city and its lagoon are a UNESCO World Heritage Site. On your luxurious home-away-from home, you arrive already equipped with a sense of what it’s like to live in the city that’s neither land nor water. Add your own sigh to the Bridge of Sighs, sip a spritz al bitter as you plot your agenda, and let the water taxis do your navigating unless you don’t mind getting lost. Not such a bad prospect, with serendipitous discoveries around every corner.