12 NIGHT MEDITERRANEAN GREEK ISLES ADVENTURE STARTS HERE

Barcelona , Spain | Valletta , Malta | Santorini , Greece | Mykonos , Greece | Athens (Piraeus) , Greece | Rome (Civitavecchia) , Italy | Florence / Pisa (Livorno) , Italy | Provence (Marseille) , France | Barcelona , Spain

YOUR SHIP

VISION OF THE SEAS

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YOUR SHIP

VISION OF THE SEAS

VISION OF THE SEAS

EXPLORE MORE ONBOARD

You'll gain a new perspective of adventure onboard Vision of the Seas®, and we don't just mean the views at the top of the Rock Climbing Wall. From classic sips at R Bar to disco dancing in Boogie Wonderland, this ship is a spectacle to behold.

DAY 1 - Departure Day

Barcelona, Spain

DEPARTS:
5:00 PM

OH MY GAUDI

Grab a steamy cortado in a sidewalk café and then take a morning walk along the Mediterranean shore. Take the plunge and swim with sharks at one of Europe’s largest aquariums. Comb ancient excavated relics at Barcelona City History Museum. Or peruse extraordinary art collections by Spanish talents at one of the city’s renowned museums.

La Sagrada Couple Walking
The gothic Barcelona Cathedral at night, in Barcelona Spain
Barceloneta Beach at sunset, with a view of the W Hotel in Barcelona, Spain
View of the city from Park Guell in Barcelona, Spain
The National Museum of Catalan (Museu Nacional d'Art de Catalunya) on a Summer day in Barcelona, Spain
View of Castillo de Montjuic on mountain Montjuic in Barcelona, Spain

Grab a steamy cortado in a sidewalk café and then take a morning walk along the Mediterranean shore. Take the plunge and swim with sharks at one of Europe’s largest aquariums. Comb ancient excavated relics at Barcelona City History Museum. Or peruse extraordinary art collections by Spanish talents at one of the city’s renowned museums.

La Sagrada Couple Walking
The gothic Barcelona Cathedral at night, in Barcelona Spain
Barceloneta Beach at sunset, with a view of the W Hotel in Barcelona, Spain
View of the city from Park Guell in Barcelona, Spain
The National Museum of Catalan (Museu Nacional d'Art de Catalunya) on a Summer day in Barcelona, Spain
View of Castillo de Montjuic on mountain Montjuic in Barcelona, Spain
Things To Do

in Barcelona

La Sagrada Familia Interior Colorful

SKY HIGH DELIGHTS

Get an up-close glimpse of La Sagrada Família, a cathedral masterwork designed by celebrated Catalan architect Antoni Gaudí. Marvel at its sky-piercing spires and then step inside to admire intricate mosaics, Montjuïc stone pillars and the Nativity façade. You can even climb to the tippy-top of the spires for panoramic city views.

Barceloneta Beach  at Sunset

SEAS THE DAY

With seven beaches spanning more than two miles of Mediterranean coastline, Barcelona’s harborfront is known for some of the world’s best sun-seeking and on-the-sea adventures. Lounge along the shore, kayak deep blue waters— or charter a fishing trip for the chance to reel in tuna, swordfish or Mediterranean spearfish.

La Rambla Historic Buildings

IN THE MIX

Take a stroll along La Rambla’s pedestrian boulevard to experience the city’s pure essence. Souvenir shops, street artists, flower stalls, sidewalk cafes and Catalan folk sardana dancers set a lively scene. Its marvelous centerpiece, La Catedral, dates from the 1200s— and its tower delivers sweeping views of medieval Barcelona.

Couple Enjoying the Local Sparkling Cava Wine

LOCAL CUISINE

Barcelona has mastered the art of eating. Many restaurants serve up creative nueva cocina española, while waterfront spots dish out seafood paella and multi-course lunch menus include a glass of sparkling cava wine. For a taste of Catalan cooking, try pa amb tomàquet (tomato-topped bread). Or nibble on Spanish tapas (bite-sized appetizers) around the bar like a local, with house-made vermouth in hand.

Couple Strolling Through the Fresh Local Market

SHOPPING

You could spend hours checking out the markets of Barcelona for high-quality leatherwear, jewelry, old books and unique housewares. Passeig de Gràcia and Barcelona Shopping Line are two popular retail promenades— and the Gothic Quarter is home to dozens of family-owned shops that sell textiles, stationery, decorative ceramic tiles and earthenware kitchenware.

DAY 2 - AT SEA

CRUISING

CAN'T MISS FAVORITES

Man Climbing Rock Wall On Board Day Time
Family Swimming and Enjoying the Pool

Man Climbing Rock Wall On Board Day Time
Family Swimming and Enjoying the Pool

THINGS TO DO

Man Climbing Down the Rock Wall
Rock Climbing Wall

A BOLDER BOULDER

Rise to the occasion and take on the signature Rock Climbing Wall. From beginners to speed climbers, everyone can enjoy an unparalleled view from 40 feet above deck. Included in your fare, no reservation required.

Girls Diving and Swimming in the Covered Pool
Pools

SWIM IT TO WIN IT

Soak up the sun or savor the shade on expanded pool decks, with complimentary loungers, live music, and the opportunity to enjoy a frosty cocktail.

DAY 3 - DOCKED

Valletta, Malta

ARRIVES:
7:00 AM
DEPARTS:
5:00 PM

HISTORY MEETS MYSTERY

Begin your Malta adventure by wandering Valletta's Grand Harbor, with its 16th-century fortifications and sweeping ocean views. Then, learn more about this island nation at the Malta Experience Museum — here, an audio-visual show guides you through 7,000 years of the island's history. Savor Malta's eclectic mix of Mediterranean, Arabic and European flavors through dishes like aljotta, a hearty fish stew with tomatoes and garlic, thickened with rice.

St. Paul's Cathedral in Valletta, Malta
Lower Barrakka Public Garden and Alexader Ball monument in Valletta, Malta
Narrow street with traditional balconies in Valletta, Malta

Begin your Malta adventure by wandering Valletta's Grand Harbor, with its 16th-century fortifications and sweeping ocean views. Then, learn more about this island nation at the Malta Experience Museum — here, an audio-visual show guides you through 7,000 years of the island's history. Savor Malta's eclectic mix of Mediterranean, Arabic and European flavors through dishes like aljotta, a hearty fish stew with tomatoes and garlic, thickened with rice.

St. Paul's Cathedral in Valletta, Malta
Lower Barrakka Public Garden and Alexader Ball monument in Valletta, Malta
Narrow street with traditional balconies in Valletta, Malta
Things To Do

in Valletta

Three cannons on the coast of Valletta, Malta

Have the Malta Experience

Despite its small size, Malta's history is pretty epic. The audio-visual presentation at Valletta's Malta Experience Museum takes less than an hour of your time and explains everything from the country's early origins as a trade hub to its role in the World War II resistance movements. Or check out Neolithic pottery and prehistoric art at the National Museum of Archaeology.

St. John's Co-Cathedral in Valletta, Malta

Get Lost in Valletta's Streets

Valletta's streets tell a living history, from churches like St. Paul's Anglican Cathedral and St. John's Co-Cathedral, to military buildings such as Fort St. Elmo and the Lascaris War Rooms. Don't miss the Grand Master's Palace, with everything from 16th-century armor to 18th-century tapestries depicting the first expeditions to the New World.

Upper Barrakka Gardens terrace in Valletta, Malta

Circle the City Walls

If you still doubt whether Malta is the sparkling treasure it appears to be from afar, take a walk around Valletta's imposing city walls. Hike up to their highest point at Upper Baracca Gardens, where you'll be met with gorgeous views of the historic city and the sparkling blue Mediterranean.

A bowl of Stuffat tal-Fenek, the national dish of Malta

Local Cuisine

Malta's culinary heritage is as eclectic as the rest of its history, with a mix of North African and European influences. Head to Valletta's port area to dine at one of the many seafood-focused restaurants for dishes like pixxispad, swordfrish fried in olive oil with lemon. Or seek out heartier fare like stuffat tal-fenek, a rabbit stew, or bragioli — thin slices of beef stuffed with bacon, egg and breadcrumbs and slowly cooked in red wine sauce.

An assortment of souvenir necklaces

Shopping

If you're looking for postcards, keychains and other trinkets, check out the gift shop of the Malta Experience. For a more eclectic shopping experience, take a stroll down the city's Republic street, where vendors sell artisanal Maltese items like blown glass, filligree jewelry and pottery.

INSIDER TIP

In spite of Valletta's small size, it's rather hilly. Stairscases are built throughout the city so you don't have to walk up steep slopes.

DAY 4 - AT SEA

CRUISING

FOR FOODIES

Tuna Wasabi Carpaccio served at Izumi, fine dining Japanese Restaurant. One of Royal Caribbean's best cruise dining restaurants.
Flat Italian bread with potatoes and herb, marinated artichokes, olives & pesto. Cruise fine dining at Giovanni's Table.

Tuna Wasabi Carpaccio served at Izumi, fine dining Japanese Restaurant. One of Royal Caribbean's best cruise dining restaurants.
Flat Italian bread with potatoes and herb, marinated artichokes, olives & pesto. Cruise fine dining at Giovanni's Table.

THINGS TO DO

Assorted Sushi Rolls Platter served at Izumi, Japanese Restaurant. One of the best fine dining cuisine on a cruise.
Izumi

A FAR EAST FEAST

Say “Konnichiwa” to a reimagined favorite. Sushi, sashimi and more, all made-to-order with intense flavors, the best ingredients and impeccable presentation. Now that’s fresh.

Hot Lasagna
Giovanni's Table

AL DENTE INDULGENCE

A casual Italian trattoria, Giovanni's Table offers rustic dishes with a contemporary flair, including fresh pastas, braised meat dishes and stews.

DAY 5 - TENDERED

Santorini, Greece

ARRIVES:
7:00 AM
DEPARTS:
5:00 PM

Greek Island

Santorini is one of the world’s most popular islands, where adventure bubbles above the Aegean Sea in breathtaking ways. Take a cable car to see Fira’s old cathedrals and enthralling museums. Swim in deep blue waters that lap black pebbled beaches. And peel back layers of history in excavated Akrotiri— all while relishing the dramatic scenery of this Cyclades isle.

Scenic view of traditional cycladic houses on small street with flowers in foreground, in Santorini, Greece
View of the sea from a beautiful terrace with flowers in Santorini, Greece
Beautiful landscape of two fishing boats anchored in blue water at the old port in Oia, Santorini, Greece

Santorini is one of the world’s most popular islands, where adventure bubbles above the Aegean Sea in breathtaking ways. Take a cable car to see Fira’s old cathedrals and enthralling museums. Swim in deep blue waters that lap black pebbled beaches. And peel back layers of history in excavated Akrotiri— all while relishing the dramatic scenery of this Cyclades isle.

Scenic view of traditional cycladic houses on small street with flowers in foreground, in Santorini, Greece
View of the sea from a beautiful terrace with flowers in Santorini, Greece
Beautiful landscape of two fishing boats anchored in blue water at the old port in Oia, Santorini, Greece
Things To Do

in Santorini

Nea Kameni volcanic island in Santorini, Greece

VOLCANIC WONDERS

Explore the volcanic history and geology of Santorini, site of an immense eruption 3,500 years ago. Trek the rocky landscape of Nea Kameni, an island in the center of the Santorini caldera, to see its smoking craters. Then soak in the soothing hot springs of Palea Kameni.

Early morning in Byzantine Castle Ruins in Oia village, Santorini, Greece

IT TAKES A VILLAGE

Considered the island’s most picturesque village, Oia radiates authentic Cyclades charm. Meander along tiny paths squeezed between stark-white villas. Snap selfies with the blue-domed St. Gerasimos Church, and view Byzantine castle ruins. Or dine on Greek seafood in a waterfront taverna— also the perfect perch for watching Oia’s fabulous sunsets.

Bunch of white grapes in the vineyard in the Wine Museum of Thira, Santorini, Greece

THE GLASS HALF FULL

Indulge your taste buds in a delectable tasting journey among the island’s traditional wine cellars. Vineyards dapple Santorini’s countryside, and many are among some of Europe’s oldest. White Assyrtiko and red Mantilaria are both popular varietals— and be sure to sample Santorini’s beloved dessert wine, Vinsanto.

Alcohol drink Raki with anis on wooden board in Santorini, Greece

LOCAL CUISINE

Thanks to Santorini’s rich volcanic soil, the island has a solid reputation for producing fantastic wines and vegetables— fresh cherry tomatoes, fava beans and white eggplant included. Try egg-based sfougato and fried tomatokeftedes fritters, two Santorini specialties. Pick up melitinia cookies from a local bakery. And for an after-dinner drink, sip unsweetened, anise-flavored raki.

Small white and blue house souvenirs in Santorini, Greece

SHOPPING

Ypapantis Street in Fira is known for its dozens of jewelry stores selling pieces inspired by ancient Greek and Byzantine designs. You’ll find local artwork in the galleries of Oia and books about the Cyclades in Atlantis Books. A bottle of Santorini wine or Canava ouzo makes for a tasty souvenir.

INSIDER TIP

Wear hiking boots or comfortable sneakers and plenty of sunscreen when hiking the caldera.

DAY 6 - TENDERED

Mykonos, Greece

ARRIVES:
7:00 AM
DEPARTS:
6:00 PM

Discover Mykonos

Powder white houses, sparkling blue waters, and red-hot nightlife— the Island of the Winds carries you away with colorful upscale adventures. Explore Hora’s bougainvillea-laced pathways and see the Folklore Museum’s Mykonian ship models. Join the raucous party on the shimmering sands of Super Paradise beach. Or watch the sunset from an open-air taverna— all nestled in the heart of Greece’s Cyclades islands.

Chairs with tables in typical Greek tavern in Mykonos, Greece
Famous windmills during sunset in Mykonos, Greece
A street of white buildings with blue accents in Mykonos, Greece

Powder white houses, sparkling blue waters, and red-hot nightlife— the Island of the Winds carries you away with colorful upscale adventures. Explore Hora’s bougainvillea-laced pathways and see the Folklore Museum’s Mykonian ship models. Join the raucous party on the shimmering sands of Super Paradise beach. Or watch the sunset from an open-air taverna— all nestled in the heart of Greece’s Cyclades islands.

Chairs with tables in typical Greek tavern in Mykonos, Greece
Famous windmills during sunset in Mykonos, Greece
A street of white buildings with blue accents in Mykonos, Greece
Things To Do

in Mykonos

A beautiful old white chapel, the Panagia Paraportiani Church, in Mykonos, Greece

COASTAL COSMOPOLITAN

Mykonos’ main town of Hora is a mixture of classic Cycladic architecture and buzzing street culture. Admire the stark-white Panagia Paraportiani chapel and meet the town’s famous pelican Pétros. See the island’s trademark 16th-century windmills spinning high above the port. Then explore the strip of medieval houses and waterfront cafés in Little Venice.

Agios Stefanos Beach in Mykonos, Greece

INTO THE BLUE

The multihued waters surrounding Mykonos are perfect for surfing and scuba diving, while prevailing winds invite sailing and windsurfing. Get your fill of aquatic thrills, then hit the beach— Psaroú for family fun, Agrari for seaside serenity, Paradise for epic beach parties, or Elia for a blend of all three.

The Temple of Isis in archaeological site of Delos island, Mykonos, Greece

DIG UP THE PAST

Enjoy a short boat trip to the island of Delos, a sacred Greek archeological site and the mythological birthplace of twin gods Apollo and Artemis. Comb the crumbling ruins of its ancient theater, Doric temples, markets, and mosaic-laced houses— plus the Terrace of Lions statues and amphitheater.

Greek salad and olive oil on sunny seaside restaurant in Mykonos, Greece

LOCAL CUISINE

Some of the Mediterranean’s most delectable restaurants are found on Mykonos. Its trademark kopanisti (peppered cheese) is a must-try, while you can’t go wrong with classic kremmydopita (onion pie). Enjoy fresh seafood by the sea— or a glass of sweet Heliophilos wine in a beach bar. Then for dessert go for amygdalota (almond cookies) or melopita (honey cake).

Souvenirs hanging on a wall outside a shop, Mykonos, Greece

SHOPPING

Hora is a hub for top designer fashions, including the world-famous Soho-Soho clothing boutique. Family-owned and operated Greek Light sells handmade jewelry with Greece’s traditional maiandros symbol. And don’t leave Mykonos without buying a pair of house-designed sandals or hand-loomed weavings— scarves, rugs or tablecloths.

INSIDER TIP

Hop on one of the many seawater-taxi services around the island for transport to the beaches.

DAY 7 - DOCKED

Athens (Piraeus), Greece

ARRIVES:
6:00 AM
DEPARTS:
6:00 PM

Explore the Acropolis

Explore the harbors of Piraeus, which showcase the Golden Age of Greek history. Visit the Hellenic Maritime Museum and the ship sheds — here, you can see how ancient ships were crafted. In the charming Castella district, you'll find some small, quaint shops and cafes amid the elegant neoclassical buildings. Head to Sotiros Street to find brand name stores, alongside smaller local shops.

View of the Parthenon atop the Acropolis in Athens, Greece
View of the Parthenon in Athens, Greece
Herodes Theater in Athens, Greece

Explore the harbors of Piraeus, which showcase the Golden Age of Greek history. Visit the Hellenic Maritime Museum and the ship sheds — here, you can see how ancient ships were crafted. In the charming Castella district, you'll find some small, quaint shops and cafes amid the elegant neoclassical buildings. Head to Sotiros Street to find brand name stores, alongside smaller local shops.

View of the Parthenon atop the Acropolis in Athens, Greece
View of the Parthenon in Athens, Greece
Herodes Theater in Athens, Greece
Things To Do

in Athens (Piraeus)

The Agia Triada church in Greece

Take Me to Church

The Agia Triada is one of the finest examples of Byzantine-style churches in Greece. The Church of St. Nicholas, which overlooks the port, has a magnificent interior filled with orthodox icons, frescoes and sculptures.

Mikrolimano harbour in Greece

Mediterranean Romance

Part of the Castella district, Mikrolimano is the smallest and most picturesque port of Athens, making it perfect for a romantic afternoon. Take a leisurely stroll along the promenade to take in the amazing views, then settle in a cafe or taverna for some fresh seafood or a refreshing drink with your cruise to Athens.

Various decorative Greek vases

Boats and the Bronze Age

The Naval Museum has exhibits that present ship building from ancient times to the present day. You will be fascinated by the Neosoikoi, the archaeological remains of the ship sheds where local craftsmen maintained and repaired the boats. Art lovers will have plenty to see at the Piraeus Archaeological Museum, from Bronze Age sculptures to classical Hellenistic pottery.

Grilled octopus on a white plate with a lemon on the side

Local Cuisine

Try the local dishes prepared with sun-ripened tomatoes, eggplant, bell peppers and fresh seafood like mussels and grilled octopus. Look for trovolia, a typical fresh cheese to savor with marinated olives. Ask for recommendations on local wines — the most common white is lively, floral and aromatic Moschofilero, while the red of choice is Xinomavro, an indigenous grape with a bold, complex flavor.

An assortment of Greek souvenirs such as helmets and sculptures

Shopping

You may want to bring back home some of the typical liquors such as the anise-flavored Ouzo or the strong Tsipouro. Greek olives, spices and capers can be vacuumed-packed, making for convenient souvenirs. Look for locally made leather sandals, pottery and hand-painted ceramics. You'll find most shops in the Psyri district, not far from the Acropolis during your Athens cruise.

INSIDER TIP

The yellow trolley bus (number 20) will take you from the port to Passalimani, going through Castella and ending at the Metro station.

DAY 8 - AT SEA

CRUISING

SHOW STOPPERS

Women performing on stage for the Boogie Wonderland Cruise Show, Vision of the Seas
Dancers on stage during Rhythm and Rhyme Cruise Show on Grandeur of the Seas

Women performing on stage for the Boogie Wonderland Cruise Show, Vision of the Seas
Dancers on stage during Rhythm and Rhyme Cruise Show on Grandeur of the Seas

THINGS TO DO

The performance crew of the Boogie Wonderland Cruise Show on stage in Majesty of the Seas
Boogie Wonderland

PEACE, LOVE & DISCO BEATS

Throw it back to the era that started it all with the best disco music and dancing that will leave you boogie woogie-ing all night long.

Dancers on stage during Rhythm and Rhyme Cruise Show on Grandeur of the Seas
Broadway Rhythm & Rhyme

ENTER STAGE RIGHT

Sing along with your favorite show tunes as the rhythm, rhyme, words and music of Broadway transport you to NYC.

DAY 9 - AT SEA

CRUISING

LIGHTS OUT NIGHTS OUT

LB, Liberty of the Seas, young couple, man, woman, smiling, laughing, at R-Bar, R Bar, bartender serving mixed drinks, enjoy, enjoyment, fun,
Friends Enjoying Tropical Dreams in the Solarium

LB, Liberty of the Seas, young couple, man, woman, smiling, laughing, at R-Bar, R Bar, bartender serving mixed drinks, enjoy, enjoyment, fun,
Friends Enjoying Tropical Dreams in the Solarium

THINGS TO DO

LB, Liberty of the Seas, young couple, man, woman, smiling, laughing, at R-Bar, R Bar, bartender serving mixed drinks, enjoy, enjoyment, fun,
R Bar

SHAKING UP THE CLASSICS

Vintage glamor comes alive at R Bar — serving classic cocktails, like gin martinis and Old Fashioneds, in a distinctly sophisticated setting.

Solarium Bar and cafe on the OA, Oasis of the Seas
Solarium Bar

SUN, SERENITY & SIPS

Does sitting in the whirlpool make you thirsty? Grab a drink at the nearby Solarium Bar.

DAY 10 - DOCKED

Rome (Civitavecchia), Italy

ARRIVES:
7:00 AM
DEPARTS:
7:00 PM

ADVENTURE SET IN STONE

Experience la dolce vita in The Eternal City— recalling the glory days of Ancient Rome and twirling forks full of pasta in a trattoria. Stand in awe of paintings by Italian masters at Villa Borghese. Soak up Trastevere’s backstreet charms. Discover Vatican City’s spiritual legacy. Or ride past centuries-old basilicas in a three-wheeled Ape Calessino.

View of the Colosseum in Rome, Italy
The Trevi Fountain in Rome, Italy
The Vatican dome in Italy

Experience la dolce vita in The Eternal City— recalling the glory days of Ancient Rome and twirling forks full of pasta in a trattoria. Stand in awe of paintings by Italian masters at Villa Borghese. Soak up Trastevere’s backstreet charms. Discover Vatican City’s spiritual legacy. Or ride past centuries-old basilicas in a three-wheeled Ape Calessino.

View of the Colosseum in Rome, Italy
The Trevi Fountain in Rome, Italy
The Vatican dome in Italy
Things To Do

in Rome (Civitavecchia)

The Pantheon in Rome, Italy

ANCIENT AND AMAZING

Walk through the heart of Ancient Rome. Start at the Colosseum, an enormous arena where gladiators once battled. Then meander around the Roman Forum’s timeworn ruins, past crumbling temples and basilicas. See where emperors lived on Palatine Hill— and enjoy an up-close view of the 2,000-year-old, well-preserved Pantheon church.

A fountain in Piazza Navona  in Italy

FAMOUS PLACES

Roam around Rome’s piazzas, as each offers a unique perspective. Dine al fresco in Piazza Navona and climb The Spanish Steps in Piazza di Spagna. Wander cobbled alleys in bustling Trastevere and browse Campo de’ Fiori’s artisan stalls. Be sure to toss a coin in the Trevi Fountain for good measure.

Statues in the Vatican Museum

SACRED PLACES

Explore the Vatican Museums’ extraordinary collection of tapestries and classical statues. Step inside the Sistine Chapel and be awed by Michelangelo’s ceiling frescoes. Then enter St. Peter’s Basilica, one of the world’s largest churches, to stand under its enormous sky-piercing dome.

Pizza, pasta, and antipasta on a table in Rome

LOCAL CUISINE

Romans live to eat, whether it’s family-style or in a sidewalk café. For an authentic taste of Cucina Romana, try carciofi alla Romana (braised artichokes) or spaghetti alla carbonara. Enjoy panino (stuffed sandwiches) or thin-crusted Roman pizza. Satisfy your sweet tooth with a scoop of gelato. Then finish the night with a glass of white wine from the surrounding Lazio region.

Minitature models of the Colosseum and Vatican

SHOPPING

Street stalls throughout the city are your best bet for souvenirs. Via Condotti offers a string of couture Italian designers. Browse artist studios along Via Margutta, or the indie artisan retailers of the Monti neighborhood. Porta Portese is the city’s largest flea market— and La Rinascente, the first department store.

INSIDER TIP

The train ride between Civitavecchia and Rome is approximately 80 minutes each way.

DAY 11 - DOCKED

Florence / Pisa (Livorno), Italy

ARRIVES:
7:00 AM
DEPARTS:
7:00 PM

Relive History

Spend your day in nearby Florence: Visit the impressive Santa Croce Cathedral, where you can visit the tombs of Michelangelo, Galileo and Machiavelli, and check out the Galleria degli Uffizi, which houses Botticelli's "Birth of Venus" and other masterworks. Or head to Pisa instead: Climb to the top of the iconic Leaning Tower or Campanile (bell tower), and explore the vibrant streets lined with Romanesque buildings, Gothic churches and gelaterias to satisfy your sweet tooth.

The Leaning Tower of Pisa in Italy
The Leaning Tower of Pisa in Italy
Ponte Vecchio bridge in Florence, Italy

Spend your day in nearby Florence: Visit the impressive Santa Croce Cathedral, where you can visit the tombs of Michelangelo, Galileo and Machiavelli, and check out the Galleria degli Uffizi, which houses Botticelli's "Birth of Venus" and other masterworks. Or head to Pisa instead: Climb to the top of the iconic Leaning Tower or Campanile (bell tower), and explore the vibrant streets lined with Romanesque buildings, Gothic churches and gelaterias to satisfy your sweet tooth.

The Leaning Tower of Pisa in Italy
The Leaning Tower of Pisa in Italy
Ponte Vecchio bridge in Florence, Italy
Things To Do

in Florence / Pisa (Livorno)

Pisa Lungarno in Pisa, Italy

Respite by the River

Leave the tourist masses behind at the Leaning Tower on the Field of Miracles in Pisa and escape for a pleasant stroll along the banks of the Arno River. Admire the colors and architecture of the palazzi that line the southern riverside embankment, stop for a picnic with some simple focaccia bread, mozzarella and wine, and continue to Pisa's medieval heart north of the water.

Palazzo Vecchio in Florence, Italy

City Panorama

In Florence, hike up the 418-steps of the Torre d'Arnolfo tower, part of the Palazzo Vecchio. The fortress palace was built in the fourteenth century and is still Florence's seat of power. Inside, admire Michelangelo's Genio della Vittoria sculpture as well as several large paintings by other masters such as Giorgio Vasari.

Frontal view of the Basilica of Santa Maria Novella in Florence, Italy

Marble and Monasticism

Visit Florence's Basilica di Santa Maria Novella, with its eye-catching green-and-white marble facade. Inside the basilica, built between the 13th and 15th centuries, you'll find countless artistic masterpieces, such as the frescoes by Domenico Ghirlandaio. Continue through a side door into the vast, serene monastic complex.

A bowl of vegetable soup

Local Cuisine

Tuscans share a proud culinary tradition, with seasonal and sustainable quality ingredients sourced locally. Cruise to Livorno to sample a traditional bowl of earthy ribollita (bean, bread and vegetable soup) from a humble family-run eatery. Sample a bistecca alla fiorentina, or Florentine steak, cooked over roasted chestnuts to impart a smoky flavor. Or grab some salami, parmesan cheeses and biscotti for lunch from the Mercato Centrale.

Leather diaries for sale in Florence, Italy

Shopping

Ignore the souvenir shops around Pisa's tower and head to the main shopping streets Corso Italia and Borgo Stretto, where you'll find Italian fashion shops. In stylish Florence, homegrown designers include Guccio Gucci and Salvatore Ferragamo. During your Tuscany cruise, look for the workshops in the medieval alleys, with handcrafted jewelry and leather goods from shoes to purses.

INSIDER TIP

Buy entry tickets in advance to save time at museums.

DAY 12 - DOCKED

Provence (Marseille), France

ARRIVES:
10:00 AM
DEPARTS:
5:00 PM

Adventure in France

Start your Marseille adventure at the port, where fishing boats and yachts bob close to one another and the fish market Quai des Belges still sells the day's catch. Then hop on the tourist train at Quai du Port for the steep climb to the neo-Byzantine Basilique Notre-Dame de la Garde. Check out MuCEM museum to trace the first footprints of Mediterranean history, then relax beside the crescent-shaped colonnade and fountain at Palais Longchamp.

The Notre Dame de la Garde basilica towering over the city of Marseille, France
A lavender field in Provence, France
Panoramic view of Marseille, France

Start your Marseille adventure at the port, where fishing boats and yachts bob close to one another and the fish market Quai des Belges still sells the day's catch. Then hop on the tourist train at Quai du Port for the steep climb to the neo-Byzantine Basilique Notre-Dame de la Garde. Check out MuCEM museum to trace the first footprints of Mediterranean history, then relax beside the crescent-shaped colonnade and fountain at Palais Longchamp.

The Notre Dame de la Garde basilica towering over the city of Marseille, France
A lavender field in Provence, France
Panoramic view of Marseille, France
Things To Do

in Provence (Marseille)

The steps leading up to the  Notre Dame de la Garde basilica in Marseille, France

Climb to the Heavens

Climb the steps to 19th-century Basilique Notre-Dame de la Garde, rising 150 meters above the water. At its peak is a large golden statue of the Virgin Mary and Child, said to watch over Marseille's maritime community. The basilica incorporates a renaissance-era fort that includes a serene chapel with ornate stained-glass windows.

The Calanques D'En Vay bay in France

Natural Drama

At Calanques National Park, you'll find rough, white limestone cliffs that rise sharply above the sea. You can take a relaxing boat tour or even kayak in the area. The park stretches from Marseille to La Ciotat, where you'll encounter landscapes of lime rock and red conglomerate. The park is internationally known for its sublime landscapes, biodiversity and rich heritage.

The fountain in front of the Palais de Longchamp

Cultural Stroll

Make your way on foot down Boulevard Longchamp, with its posh 19th-century houses, tree-lined promenade and stunning Palais Longchamp, where you'll wander into a well-manicured park with a stately colonnade and fountain. It's also home to two of the city's finest museums, the Natural Museum and the Museum of Fine Art, both of which are well worth a stop.

Blue mussels in bouillabaisse

Local Cuisine

The signature dish of Marseille is without a doubt the savory bouillabaisse. This savory fish stew is packed with an array of local seafood, including clams, white fish, mussels or lobster, and the broth is flavored with fennel and pastis, a local licorice-flavored liqueur — dive in with a crusty baguette for the full experience.

Famous soap from Marseille, France for sale at a market

Shopping

Le Panier, just north of the port, dates back to 600 BC. While its colored walls, narrow streets and sunny squares once made up one of the poorest districts of the city, today it's filled with trendy independent boutiques, craft shops and galleries. Cruise to Provence and look for handmade savon de Marseille, the traditional green or white soap made with olive oil that has been exported from Marseille for centuries.

INSIDER TIP

To the north-west you'll find L'Estaque, one of the fishing villages that inspired many of France's greatest artists in the late 19th century, including Cezanne and Monticelli.

DAY 13 - Arrival Day

Barcelona, Spain

ARRIVES:
6:00 AM

CROWN OF CATALONIA

Afternoons in Barcelona are best spent eating Spanish tapas in a cozy bar. Then take a Gaudí-inspired architecture crawl to see modernist wonders like Casa Milà, Casa Batlló, Park Güell and the awe-inspiring La Sagrada Família. Explore medieval dockyards at the Maritime Museum— or throw on an apron and learn the centuries-old art of Catalan cuisine in a chef-led cooking class.

La Sagrada Couple Walking
The gothic Barcelona Cathedral at night, in Barcelona Spain
Barceloneta Beach at sunset, with a view of the W Hotel in Barcelona, Spain
View of the city from Park Guell in Barcelona, Spain
The National Museum of Catalan (Museu Nacional d'Art de Catalunya) on a Summer day in Barcelona, Spain
View of Castillo de Montjuic on mountain Montjuic in Barcelona, Spain

Afternoons in Barcelona are best spent eating Spanish tapas in a cozy bar. Then take a Gaudí-inspired architecture crawl to see modernist wonders like Casa Milà, Casa Batlló, Park Güell and the awe-inspiring La Sagrada Família. Explore medieval dockyards at the Maritime Museum— or throw on an apron and learn the centuries-old art of Catalan cuisine in a chef-led cooking class.

La Sagrada Couple Walking
The gothic Barcelona Cathedral at night, in Barcelona Spain
Barceloneta Beach at sunset, with a view of the W Hotel in Barcelona, Spain
View of the city from Park Guell in Barcelona, Spain
The National Museum of Catalan (Museu Nacional d'Art de Catalunya) on a Summer day in Barcelona, Spain
View of Castillo de Montjuic on mountain Montjuic in Barcelona, Spain
Things To Do

in Barcelona

La Sagrada Familia Interior Colorful

SKY HIGH DELIGHTS

Get an up-close glimpse of La Sagrada Família, a cathedral masterwork designed by celebrated Catalan architect Antoni Gaudí. Marvel at its sky-piercing spires and then step inside to admire intricate mosaics, Montjuïc stone pillars and the Nativity façade. You can even climb to the tippy-top of the spires for panoramic city views.

Barceloneta Beach  at Sunset

SEAS THE DAY

With seven beaches spanning more than two miles of Mediterranean coastline, Barcelona’s harborfront is known for some of the world’s best sun-seeking and on-the-sea adventures. Lounge along the shore, kayak deep blue waters— or charter a fishing trip for the chance to reel in tuna, swordfish or Mediterranean spearfish.

La Rambla Historic Buildings

IN THE MIX

Take a stroll along La Rambla’s pedestrian boulevard to experience the city’s pure essence. Souvenir shops, street artists, flower stalls, sidewalk cafes and Catalan folk sardana dancers set a lively scene. Its marvelous centerpiece, La Catedral, dates from the 1200s— and its tower delivers sweeping views of medieval Barcelona.

Couple Enjoying the Local Sparkling Cava Wine

LOCAL CUISINE

Barcelona has mastered the art of eating. Many restaurants serve up creative nueva cocina española, while waterfront spots dish out seafood paella and multi-course lunch menus include a glass of sparkling cava wine. For a taste of Catalan cooking, try pa amb tomàquet (tomato-topped bread). Or nibble on Spanish tapas (bite-sized appetizers) around the bar like a local, with house-made vermouth in hand.

Couple Strolling Through the Fresh Local Market

SHOPPING

You could spend hours checking out the markets of Barcelona for high-quality leatherwear, jewelry, old books and unique housewares. Passeig de Gràcia and Barcelona Shopping Line are two popular retail promenades— and the Gothic Quarter is home to dozens of family-owned shops that sell textiles, stationery, decorative ceramic tiles and earthenware kitchenware.

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