Royal Caribbean’s 2019-2020 cruise vacations offer plenty of new and exciting adventures for the whole family — from more short Caribbean cruises to even wilder ways to see Mother Nature’s best in Alaska. What’s more, four European ports have been added to the lineup for even more cultural and historical travels.
In Europe, vacationers can explore places like Zadar, Croatia and its thundering waterfalls, and Visby, Sweden, known as the best-preserved medieval city in the region. For a visit to the coastline, take in the picture-perfect fishing village of Portofino, Italy and Porto, Portugal, filled with history and unique buildings.
These destinations join our existing lineup of iconic cities like Barcelona, Spain; Amsterdam, Holland; Berlin, Germany; and Edinburgh in Scotland, which you can visit as well while cruising to these brand new locales.
Want to find out more about what these new additions can offer? Read on to see which one you should sail to first:
The Swedish island of Visby was a key trading port back in the Viking Age. Of course, it’s packed with fascinating history, and what makes this locale so unique is its medieval architecture that’s incredibly well-preserved; you’ll feel as if you traveled in time to another era.
There are more than 90 churches from the 13th century — still in use — and even older structures you can explore, like Visby Cathedral (also known as St. Mary’s) with its towering twin spires and ornate details.
Another rare Swedish experience this island offers: warm sunshine. Visby is Sweden’s sunniest vacation destination, with a good chance of balmy days from April till September. This means beautiful sandy beaches and lush meadows throughout the island.
With its rich Viking past, you can also catch a tour to Gnisvärd Skeppssättning to see a Bronze Age burial site with large headstones made of rock and arranged into the shape of a ship.
Plan your cruise to Visby and other spots in Europe here.
Situated on the Adriatic Sea, Zadar has come to be known in recent years as “Croatia’s capital of cool”. As you make your way through this coastal city, it’s easy to see why.
In addition to its up-and-coming culinary scene, the city also boasts a long history predating the Roman Empire and stunning natural attractions—like like vibrant waterfalls; Dinara mountain—with its tallest peak shaped like a human head and a prehistoric cave, located in nearby Krka River National Park. Another must-see is the famous “sea organ” close to the city center, where you can hear otherworldly music made from the waves.
The city is also filled with delicious restaurant options, offering a mix of traditional dishes and innovative cooking. To really get a taste of the region’s unique flavor, tour a local vineyard and sample Dalmatian wines and Pag cheese, all while you’re surrounded with spectacular views.
Go on a Croatian adventure here.
Once a small fishing village, Portofino, Italy makes for an ideal Italian getaway, as it has a little bit of everything—from delicious, fresh food and scenic walking trails to luxury resorts overlooking the Italian Riviera.
At the center of Portofino is its main square, also known as Portofino Piazzetta. No cars are allowed in the central square, which makes for a relaxing lunch break—with delicious olive oil—shopping and people-watching.
The village is also known for its stunning views because it was built on a terrain of rocky cliffs. Just outside of Portofino is Cinque Terre National Park—a UNESCO World Heritage Site—where you can ascend steep slopes to get panoramic views of the Mediterranean, along with the colorful houses and buildings dotted along the cliff’s edge.
Here are cruises that will take you to Portofino and along the coast.
Located where the Douro River flows into the Atlantic Ocean is Porto, one of Portugal’s oldest cities—where food, drink and trade from different regions have fused to create a vibrant culture.
Rising up behind the city are the beautiful green terraces where Port, the region’s famous aged dessert wine, is produced. As one of the oldest wine regions, the Douro Valley is home to a number of wine caves, where visitors can learn about and sample the various fruit and spice flavors imparted by the different grapes used.
While Porto may be best known for exporting its namesake wine, it’s most recently grown popular for its slow-paced and tranquil lifestyle. Amidst the historical landmarks in the Ribeira district of the city are numerous cafes, restaurants and shops. After a day of leisurely strolling down cobblestone streets, cap it off with some al fresco dining on the banks of the Douro River, and watch as the sun sets over the Atlantic.
Here are all the ways you can visit Porto.
Ready to pack your bags and set sail to historical sites and taste local delicacies in Europe? Plan your next vacation and cruise to our new destinations and iconic favorites here.