14 NIGHT SPANISH MEDITERRANEAN CRUISE ADVENTURE STARTS HERE

Southampton , England | Vigo , Spain | Lisbon , Portugal | Gibraltar , United Kingdom | Palma De Mallorca , Spain | Barcelona , Spain | Ibiza , Spain | Valencia , Spain | Málaga , Spain | Seville (Cadiz) , Spain | Southampton , England

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INDEPENDENCE OF THE SEAS

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YOUR SHIP

INDEPENDENCE OF THE SEAS

INDEPENDENCE OF THE SEAS

GRAB HOLD OF BOLD

If all new adventures are your jam, you've come to the right ship. Launch yourself into a virtual world on a new bungee trampoline experience— Sky Pad℠. Dive into batter fried goodness at the new poolside Fish & Ships℠. And brush up on your dance moves with shows like Invitation to Dance.

DAY 1 - Departure Day

Southampton, England

DEPARTS:
4:30 PM

HISTORIC MYSTERIES

If you're arriving at the Southhampton International Airport, it's located on the outskirts of the city, making it easy to arrive into town. If you're flying into London a few days earlier, grab a train from Waterloo Station. During your time in Southampton, explore its medieval architectural spots like Bargate and the Old Town walls. Or learn more about the day the Titantic set sail from here in 1912.

The Bargate medieval gatehouse in Southampton, England
The exterior of the Tudor House in Southampton, England
A waterfront quayside in Southampton, England

If you're arriving at the Southhampton International Airport, it's located on the outskirts of the city, making it easy to arrive into town. If you're flying into London a few days earlier, grab a train from Waterloo Station. During your time in Southampton, explore its medieval architectural spots like Bargate and the Old Town walls. Or learn more about the day the Titantic set sail from here in 1912.

The Bargate medieval gatehouse in Southampton, England
The exterior of the Tudor House in Southampton, England
A waterfront quayside in Southampton, England
Things To Do

in Southampton

View of Stonehenge in England

Prehistoric Adventure

Located just an hour from Southampton, Stonehenge is one of the most well-known prehistoric sites in all of Europe. Wander around the miraculous stone circle and transport yourself back in time when Neolithic engineers used only simple tools to build the huge monument — it's believed they hauled those massive stones over 240 miles from Wales without the use of machines.

The entrance to the SeaCity Museum in Southampton, England

A Port of Importance

Southampton is home to one of the largest ports in the UK and millions of travelers pass through each year. In 1912, the most famous of those travelers would pass through as they set out to America onboard the Titanic. Southampton's SeaCity museum gives you the opportunity to learn more about the events that happened aboard that famous ship.

Close up view of The Bargate gatehouse in Southampton, England

Play Knights in Armor

Step back into the medieval era and walk the old walls of the city. Built to protect the town from attack by sea, most of the wall is still standing, leaving visitors a spectacular view of Southampton and the sea. Watch as boats enter the port city, and see how it would have been if you were a knight on watch hundreds of years ago.

Traditional fish and chips in England

Local Cuisine

Head to the pub for a refreshing glass of ale to pair with crispy, mouthwatering fish and chips. If fried food isn't your thing, go in for a salad with fresh watercress, the peppery green that the Hampshire region is famous for. You'll also find upscale fare based on England's most-loved flavors: Try chicken with Indian-inspired vegetable pakora and tandoori puree or braised Hampshire beef with ale cream.

Various antiques at a market

Shopping

Shop for big-name brands galore at Westquay Shopping Centre, the premier shopping destination of the South Coast. Head to Bedford Place for independent shops and boutiques — the country's oldest traditional shoemaker is located here. On weekends, wander down the road to Bar Street to check out the local market for antiques, crafts, vintage accessories and jewelry.

DAY 2 - AT SEA

CRUISING

CAN'T MISS FAVORITES

Man Sliding on the side of Mariner on The Perfect Storm
Man Doing Air Trick on Flowrider

Man Sliding on the side of Mariner on The Perfect Storm
Man Doing Air Trick on Flowrider

THINGS TO DO

Girl Sliding and Smiling on The Perfect Storm
The Perfect Storm℠

A TWISTING TURNING ADVENTURE

Grab a buddy and plunge through three stories of twisting, turning thrills to the bottom of the dual racer slides Typhoon℠ and Cyclone℠. The conditions are just right — for The Perfect Storm℠.

Girl Surfing Flowrider at Daytime with a Smile
FlowRider®

NOW BOARDING FOR ADVENTURE

Grab your board and get ready for 30,000 gallons of rushing awesome headed your way. The surf’s always up on the 40-foot-long FlowRider® surf simulator.

DAY 3 - DOCKED

Vigo, Spain

ARRIVES:
8:00 AM
DEPARTS:
6:00 PM

Galicia

Get a taste of Spain's Galicia region in the bustling port city of Vigo. See the work of local artists at the Vigo Museum of Contemporary Art. Then, head to the Cies Islands for a dip in the clear blue waters surrounded by the region's forested mountains. Later, feast on huge grilled red prawns and meaty mussels with a glass of crisp Galician white wine.

The Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela in Spain
A lake in Castrelos Park in Vigo, Spain
The Rande Bridge over the Vigo River in Spain

Get a taste of Spain's Galicia region in the bustling port city of Vigo. See the work of local artists at the Vigo Museum of Contemporary Art. Then, head to the Cies Islands for a dip in the clear blue waters surrounded by the region's forested mountains. Later, feast on huge grilled red prawns and meaty mussels with a glass of crisp Galician white wine.

The Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela in Spain
A lake in Castrelos Park in Vigo, Spain
The Rande Bridge over the Vigo River in Spain
Things To Do

in Vigo

View of the Santa Maria church with the Marvao castle in the distance in Vigo, Spain

Read the Fine Print

Located in Vigo's Old Town, Museo Municipal de Vigo tells the broader story of Vigo and the rest of Galicia. Learn about the region's main historical claim to fame, the Camino de Santiago — a pilgrimage leading to the Galician church where, legend has it, the remains of the Apostle James are housed. Or head to Museo do Mar de Galicia, which focuses on the region's seafaring culture and legacy.

Interior of the Monte Real Castle

Appreciate the Bigger Picture

Put on a wider lens by hiking up to Castelo do Castro, where you can enjoy a 360-degree view of the city and its port. Another place to appreciate an eclectic cross-section of local Vigo life is Plaza Porta do Sol, a popular meeting point where you can enjoy some of the city's finest people-watching.

A beach in Cies Islands in Spain

Islands Await

Take the 45-minute boat ride to the Cies Islands. Here, you'll find calm white-sand beaches with pristine blue waters, surrounded by views of the dramatic mountainous landscape. There are also caves to explore here, as well as some of the area's best bird-watching.

A platter with oysters with two glasses of wine, bread and a sliced lemon

Local Cuisine

You'll notice lots of oyster sellers throughout Vigo's city center, but if you're looking for a meal that's less raw, sit down for a casual tapas lunch at Old Town eateries. Highlights include chipirones — grilled baby squid with lemon and herbs — and calamares en su tinta, calamari served in its own ink. Wash it down with a glass of albarino from Rias Baixas, a nearby Galician winemaking region where they produce crisp, dry white wines.

A store in Vigo, Spain that sells wicker baskets and goods

Shopping

You'll find the most picturesque shopping in Vigo amid the seafood sellers or O Calvario Municipal Market. Since you probably won't be able to take fresh fish back with you, walk down the Rua Cesteiros shopping street to bargain for local souvenirs and handicrafts, much of which centers on traditional basket weaving.

INSIDER TIP

Even if you speak Spanish, you'll notice the local language is something a little different: The Galician dialect is a unique blend of Portuguese and Spanish.

DAY 4 - DOCKED

Lisbon, Portugal

ARRIVES:
9:30 AM
DEPARTS:
5:00 PM

Great Views

Fuel up for your Lisbon adventure with a delectable pasteis de nata, a sweet custard tart spiced with cinnamon and best savored warm. Then, climb the Seven Hills of Portugal and admire panoramic views of the sea and the city from above. Ride the yellow tram to explore every inch of colorful Lisbon. Wander along the seaside in the Belem district and marvel at the 16th-century architecture of the Jeronimos Monastery and Belem Tower.

Aerial view of the different homes and buildings of Lisbon, Portugal
The Belem Tower on the coast of Lisbon, Portugal
Rossio Square in Lisbon, Portugal

Fuel up for your Lisbon adventure with a delectable pasteis de nata, a sweet custard tart spiced with cinnamon and best savored warm. Then, climb the Seven Hills of Portugal and admire panoramic views of the sea and the city from above. Ride the yellow tram to explore every inch of colorful Lisbon. Wander along the seaside in the Belem district and marvel at the 16th-century architecture of the Jeronimos Monastery and Belem Tower.

Aerial view of the different homes and buildings of Lisbon, Portugal
The Belem Tower on the coast of Lisbon, Portugal
Rossio Square in Lisbon, Portugal
Things To Do

in Lisbon

View of the Pena National Palace in Lisbon, Portugal

Get Romantic

Step into the pages of a fairy tale in Sintra, a UNESO World Heritage Site a short ride from Lisbon. The city's awash in colorful buildings and grand forts, including the Romanticist architecture of the pastel-hued Pena Palace — more like a castle, really — and the extravagant Quinta da Regalaira villa. Or, wander through gardens inspired by Dante's "Inferno."

Tables on a terrace in Lisbon, Portugal

Go View-Hopping

There's no other way to explore Lisbon than to see it from the miradouros, the hilltop lookout points scattered around the city. Ride the Santa Justo Lift to catch a glimpse of the city below. Enjoy an evening drink at the Miradouro de Santa Catarina. Finally, watch the sunset behind the Ponte 25 de Abril Bridge.

Jeronimos Monastery in Lisbon, Portugal

Architectural Adventure

History buffs should head to Belem. See the 16th-century Manueline architecture of the Jeronimos Monastery. Lisbon, Portugal cruises will allow you to visit the final resting place of explorer Vasco de Gama before walking to the river to snap a photo of the Torre de Belem, a 16th-century fort that appears to float in the ocean.

A tray full of Pasteis de Nata pastries in Lisbon, Portugal

Local Cuisine

You'll find plenty of Portuguese delicacies around Lisbon. Follow the locals to the nearest food truck for a bifana, a sandwich of pork marinated in white wine and garlic sauce. Snack on salty sardines over a glass of wine, or devour a pasteis de nata, the famous egg tart that packs a creamy, cinnamon-infused custard in a crisp shell.

Various Lisbon souvenir magnets

Shopping

Browse eclectic clothes and jewelry in the backstreets of Bairro Alto. Feira da Ladra, or "thieves' market," is the place to go for handmade crafts and antiques. Looking for a high street? Walk down Chiado or Avenida da Liberdade to shop international brands.

INSIDER TIP

Tram 28 is the best-known tram line, taking riders through all the must-see neighborhoods, but the trolleys fill up quickly. Opt for a lesser known route to avoid crowds.

DAY 5 - DOCKED

Gibraltar, United Kingdom

ARRIVES:
12:00 PM
DEPARTS:
7:00 PM

Coastal Rock

Come see firsthand the unique mix of cultural influences that define Gibraltar. Traipse through the Moorish Castle, a still-standing medieval fortress. Ride the cable car to the summit of the city's namesake landform, the Rock of Gibraltar — at the top, you can get up-close-and-personal with the local Barbary macaques. Then, head to Gibraltar Port and savor the distinctive blend of Mediterranean and British flavors that makes up the local cuisine.

Aerial View of the Rock of Gibraltar
Hotel and beach view from top of the Rock of Gibraltar, United Kingdom
View of the cable car in Gibraltar, United Kingdom

Come see firsthand the unique mix of cultural influences that define Gibraltar. Traipse through the Moorish Castle, a still-standing medieval fortress. Ride the cable car to the summit of the city's namesake landform, the Rock of Gibraltar — at the top, you can get up-close-and-personal with the local Barbary macaques. Then, head to Gibraltar Port and savor the distinctive blend of Mediterranean and British flavors that makes up the local cuisine.

Aerial View of the Rock of Gibraltar
Hotel and beach view from top of the Rock of Gibraltar, United Kingdom
View of the cable car in Gibraltar, United Kingdom
Things To Do

in Gibraltar

View of the Rock of Gibraltar from Europa Point

Trace History

Gibraltar's Moorish Castle is both its most popular historical attraction and its oldest one, dating back to the 8th century. Explore more recent history at British colonial buildings like the Convent and the Gibraltar Parliament. Or explore the city's multicultural roots at the Cathedral of St. Mary the Crowned, Gibraltar Hindu Temple or Ibrahim-al-Ibrahim Mosque, a gift from the Saudi king.

A monkey sitting on a ledge with the Rock of Gibraltar in the background

Monkey Around

Hundreds of playful Barbary macaques reside at the so-called Top of the Rock. You can reach it by cable car or by walking up the Mediterranean steps. Hungry for more ecotourism? Check out the Gibraltar Botanic Gardens, take a boat trip out on the bay to see the dolphins, or head to scenic Europa Point, which provides views of Africa on clear days.

A red and white lighthouse in Gibraltar, United Kingdom

Get Some Light Exercise

At just 2.7 square miles in area, Gibraltar is small enough you can explore a lot of it while you're here with your cruise. That said, you need not wander far from Gibraltar Port in order to enjoy yourself. Grab a lunch of moules marinieres at a portside restaurant, then walk it off with a stroll out to the island's southern tip, Europa Point, and iconic Trinity Lighthouse.

Four profiteroles cream pastries on a white plate

Local Cuisine

Not surprisingly, the star of Gibraltar's culinary scene is fresh seafood, with Atlantic white fish and shellfish taking center stage. You'll also find a variety of cultural influences: Try Italian-inspired chickpea-flour calentita bread and the national dish profiterole, a French puff-pastry filled with sweet whipped cream. Al fresco dining is the way to go here, whether you sit portside or on pedestrian-filled Casemates Square.

Assorted handmade glass ornaments

Shopping

Gibraltar's most popular keepsake is handmade glass. Glass shops from Main Street to Casemates Square will be happy to wrap your gifts up for safekeeping. If you're still nervous about transporting glass, you can admire the glass-makers at their craft, or purchase other souvenirs like artisan chocolate or Barbary macaque stuffed animals during your Iberian Peninsula cruises.

INSIDER TIP

Despite its small size, Gibraltar boasts days worth of activities. Focusing in on the most important ones to you will help you get the most out of your adventure.

DAY 6 - AT SEA

CRUISING

FOR FOODIES

Two plates with sushi at Izumi on a Royal Caribbean cruise ship
Sugar Beach on Independence of the Seas

Two plates with sushi at Izumi on a Royal Caribbean cruise ship
Sugar Beach on Independence of the Seas

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.

Assortment of Candy from Sugar Beach
Sugar Beach℠

A SWEET TREAT

Treat your sweet tooth to every candy under the sun — plus a few sugarcoated surprises. Sugar Beach℠ is stocked to max candy capacity with all your favorite confections.

DAY 7 - DOCKED

Palma De Mallorca, Spain

ARRIVES:
8:00 AM
DEPARTS:
6:00 PM

Isle of Palms

Palma de Mallorca is the perfect place to immerse yourself in history and beauty. Go back in time to the 14th century at Bellver Castle, with its mix of Arab arches and Roman-inspired fortification. Catch a wave on the golden sands of El Arenal beach. Then, tuck into cocarrois, a local take on empanadas, or cool off in the quiet gardens and medieval ruins of the 10th-century Arab Baths.

The Palma de Mallorca, Spain cityscape with La Seu cathedral towering over the city
View of the bay at Porte de Soller in Palma de Mallorca, Spain
Bellver Castle in Palma de Mallorca, Spain

Palma de Mallorca is the perfect place to immerse yourself in history and beauty. Go back in time to the 14th century at Bellver Castle, with its mix of Arab arches and Roman-inspired fortification. Catch a wave on the golden sands of El Arenal beach. Then, tuck into cocarrois, a local take on empanadas, or cool off in the quiet gardens and medieval ruins of the 10th-century Arab Baths.

The Palma de Mallorca, Spain cityscape with La Seu cathedral towering over the city
View of the bay at Porte de Soller in Palma de Mallorca, Spain
Bellver Castle in Palma de Mallorca, Spain
Things To Do

in Palma De Mallorca

La Seu cathedral and Almudaina castle

Castles and Cathedrals

Palma de Mallorca's historic places look like something out of "Game of Thrones." Whether you traipse through the courtyard of 14th-century Bellver Castle or say your prayers inside Gothic Palma Cathedral, Palma de Mallorca can transport you back to medieval times. Your can also see the city's unique Arab influence dating back to the 10th-century Moorish conquest at spots like the Arab Baths.

People enjoying Cala Llombards beach in Palma de Mallorca, Spain

Get Your Beach On

It's no surprise that Palma de Mallorca is home to some of the world's best beaches — what's astonishing is just how clear blue the water is at Cala Llombards, or how the warm, golden sands of Playa El Arenal will make you wish you never had to leave. No wonder so many red and yellow umbrellas dot the sands here.

The Cuevas del Drach in Palma de Mallorca, Spain

Explore a Dragon's Lair

Head to Porto Cristo on the east side of the island, where you'll find the Cuevas del Drach — the dragon caves. While no actual dragons have been spotted here, the stalactites and stalagmites of this ancient underground cave make it easy to imagine. You can even take a violin-serenaded boat ride on the cave's underground lake during your cruise.

A bowl of tombet, a traditional vegetable dish

Local Cuisine

Mallorca is technically part of Spain, but Palma de Mallorca's cuisine is a world unto itself. Savor tombet, a vegetarian stew with sweet potatoes and carrots that's Mallorca's take on ratatouille. Cruise to Palma de Mallorca to sample the eclectic coca mallorquina, a kind of crunchy flatbread pizza with an olive oil-rich crust topped with roasted red peppers.

A straw bag market in Palma de Mallorca, Spain

Shopping

Palma's premier shopping is to be had in the Passeig de Born neighborhood. Shop here for upscale brands like Mulberry and Zara. Then, head to Jaume III and Sant Miquel streets for boutiques specializing in fine local goods: Choose a necklace or earrings made with world-famous Mallorcan pearls, try on a pair of handmaid Menorquina sandals, or marvel at handicrafts like colorful pottery and traditional straw bags.

INSIDER TIP

If you're more interested in ocean time than historic sites, book a boat tour to see the coastline of Mallorca from the sunlit waves.

DAY 8 - DOCKED

Barcelona, Spain

ARRIVES:
7:00 AM
DEPARTS:
6:45 PM

A MOSAIC OF ADVENTURE

Barcelona is bursting at the seams with culture and adventure. Marvel at modernist facades designed by celebrated Catalan architect Antoni Gaudí. Meander along the whimsical garden pathways of Park Güell. Take a chef-led Catalan cooking class, relish citywide views atop Montjuïc Hill— even swim with sharks at one of Europe’s largest aquariums.

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

Barcelona is bursting at the seams with culture and adventure. Marvel at modernist facades designed by celebrated Catalan architect Antoni Gaudí. Meander along the whimsical garden pathways of Park Güell. Take a chef-led Catalan cooking class, relish citywide views atop Montjuïc Hill— even swim with sharks at one of Europe’s largest aquariums.

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.

INSIDER TIP

Lunch and dinner are typically eaten later in Spain than in other European countries.

DAY 9 - DOCKED

Ibiza, Spain

ARRIVES:
7:00 AM
DEPARTS:
11:00 PM

Beaches and dancing

Get to the old town of Dalt Vila, and learn why this ancient cluster of winding streets, high ramparts and stone statues was declared a World Heritage Site. Then head to Cala Comte or one of the other beaches of Ibiza, where pines trees line the coast. Duck your head into the majestic coves that grace the periphery of the beach, and watch the golden sands lap over turquoise waters.

Beach chairs lining Cala d'Hort Beach in Ibiza, Spain
A red lighthouse at the tip of a pier in Ibiza, Spain
A staircase leading to the second floor of a traditional white house in Ibiza, Spain

Get to the old town of Dalt Vila, and learn why this ancient cluster of winding streets, high ramparts and stone statues was declared a World Heritage Site. Then head to Cala Comte or one of the other beaches of Ibiza, where pines trees line the coast. Duck your head into the majestic coves that grace the periphery of the beach, and watch the golden sands lap over turquoise waters.

Beach chairs lining Cala d'Hort Beach in Ibiza, Spain
A red lighthouse at the tip of a pier in Ibiza, Spain
A staircase leading to the second floor of a traditional white house in Ibiza, Spain
Things To Do

in Ibiza

A statue of a sailor in Ibiza, Spain

A Strong History

Walk the historic streets of Ibiza's old town, Dalt Vila, where you can explore Renaissance fortifications that protected the island dating back to the 16th century. Find the storybook cathedral, Catedral de Eivissa, that sits at the top of the town and get lost in the different museums, shops and restaurants that surround it.

Cala Comte beach in Ibiza, Spain

Beat the Heat

Ibiza has plenty of beaches to choose from. Head to Talamanca beach for a relaxing experience, Figueretas for a more resort-style ambiance and Cajal Jondal Beach to catch the fashionable crowd. If you're looking for calm, views and pine trees by the beach, visit Cala Vadella and Cala Salada.

A close up view of a DJ's mixer during an outdoor party

Live It Up

Ibiza's nightlife is legend — but if you want to party in the daytime, you can do that, too. San Antonio is home to some of the biggest, loudest and longest-running clubs around. Go to Eden Ibiza, Cafe del Mar or Es Paradis for a waterfront experience, try Mint or Savannah for low-key vibes, or seek out a boat party for daytime dancing.

A platter of seafood noodle paella in Ibiza, Spain

Local Cuisine

Ibiza has a love affair with food and drink. Everywhere you go, you're sure to find some version of sangria or paella during your Ibiza cruise. But if you want to get more adventurous, try to find fideua (a take on paella but with noodles), sofrit pages (a mix of chicken, lamb and sausage) and flao (the Ibizan version of a cheesecake).

Various shops in Ibiza, Spain with outdoor displays

Shopping

Ibiza is full of bakeries, paper shops and tobacco stores, which close for a little siesta in the morning and then in the afternoon. Cruise to Ibiza and go to Las Dalias and Punta Arabia for hippie-chic stores, Emonk Ibiza for a wide variety of boots and sneakers and Sluiz for interior design items.

INSIDER TIP

Head to small villages to experience the slow-paced lifestyle of Ibiza.

DAY 10 - DOCKED

Valencia, Spain

ARRIVES:
7:00 AM
DEPARTS:
4:00 PM

PLAZAS AND PAELLA

Start your day in Valencia by roaming the cobblestone streets of Barrio del Carmen — walk along the 11th-century city walls built by the Moors before popping to one of the neighborhood's many restaurants for seafood-packed paella. Head to El Cabanyal, the old fishermen's quarter near the beach, to enjoy the sunshine and fresh seafood. Then, soak in the Mediterranean sun and bright-blue waters at Malvarrosa Beach.

Aerial beach view in Valencia, Spain
The frontal view of the Central station in Valencia, Spain
Saint Mary's Square in Valencia, Spain

Start your day in Valencia by roaming the cobblestone streets of Barrio del Carmen — walk along the 11th-century city walls built by the Moors before popping to one of the neighborhood's many restaurants for seafood-packed paella. Head to El Cabanyal, the old fishermen's quarter near the beach, to enjoy the sunshine and fresh seafood. Then, soak in the Mediterranean sun and bright-blue waters at Malvarrosa Beach.

Aerial beach view in Valencia, Spain
The frontal view of the Central station in Valencia, Spain
Saint Mary's Square in Valencia, Spain
Things To Do

in Valencia

Close up view of a cathedral in Valencia, Spain

Get Gothic

Architecture lovers will fall in love with the Old Town of Valencia. The winding lanes are filled with a mix of Gothic and Baroque architecture, including the Cathedral and Plaza del Virgen. Grab your camera and climb the 207 steps of the 13th-century Cathedral bell tower for a stunning view of the city to the countryside and the sea.

The City of Arts and Sciences in Valencia, Spain

Arts and Carafe

Venture outside of the Old Town and over to the City of Arts and Sciences. Spend a few hours admiring the modern design of the futuristic buildings by Santiago Calatrava. Check out the Oceanografic Aquarium, home to a wide variety of sharks, belugas and walruses. Afterward, relax outside in the sunshine and beautiful gardens.

Central Market in Valencia, Spain

Go to Market

One of Europe's longest-running food markets, Central Market is the place to go to sample Valencia's seasonal produce, such as artichokes and pears. To beat the crowds, head here early in the morning to enjoy a warm espresso while you shop. Once properly caffeinated, watch as locals do their daily shopping and admire the stained-glass domes and mosaic details.

A Valencian paella being served

Local Cuisine

In Valencia, you'll find plenty of tapas to sample, but you can't leave without enjoying paella. The classic Spanish dish has its roots in this seaside city, where it's usually served up with rabbit, chicken, asparagus and local snails. If you prefer pasta over rice, go in for fideua, a hearty dish of pan-fried noodles piled with local seafood like squid, shrimp or monkfish.

A woman holding a fan in Spain

Shopping

Head to the Old Town of Valencia during your cruise to find some of the best shops offering handmade fans, embroidered silk shawls and Lladro porcelain. If you happen to end up in the city on the weekend, browse the stalls at the flea market in Plaza Redonda.

INSIDER TIP

The city center is very walkable, so make sure to wear comfortable shoes to make the most of your day.

DAY 11 - DOCKED

Málaga, Spain

ARRIVES:
11:00 AM
DEPARTS:
8:00 PM
FROM MOORISH ARCHES

TO MODERN ART

After your arrive in Málaga, soak in the ancient history at La Alcazaba Moorish fotress and the ruins of the Roman Amphitheatre. Then, unwind on sunny La Malagueta beach or in the orchids and ferns at La Concepcion Botanical Garden. Check out the works of the city's most famous former resident at the Picasso Museum, and savor regional, fresh-caught pescado frito (fried fish) with a squeeze of fresh lemon.

A marina in Malaga, Spain
The Malaga, Spain cityscape
Exterior walls of the Alcazaba fortress in Malaga, Spain

After your arrive in Málaga, soak in the ancient history at La Alcazaba Moorish fotress and the ruins of the Roman Amphitheatre. Then, unwind on sunny La Malagueta beach or in the orchids and ferns at La Concepcion Botanical Garden. Check out the works of the city's most famous former resident at the Picasso Museum, and savor regional, fresh-caught pescado frito (fried fish) with a squeeze of fresh lemon.

A marina in Malaga, Spain
The Malaga, Spain cityscape
Exterior walls of the Alcazaba fortress in Malaga, Spain
Things To Do

in Málaga

View of the Alcazaba fortress in Malaga, Spain

Moor History

Ascend to the top of La Alcazaba, the medieval Moorish fortress that towers over the city. This palatial fortification was built by the Hammudid dynasty in the early 11th century and is the best-preserved Moorish castle in Spain. From here, you can wander down to the Roman Amphitheatre that sits beneath it, before you gaze up at the 16th-century cathedral that sits right in the city center.

The Malagueta beach sign in Malaga, Spain

Work on Your Tan

It just wouldn't be a trip to the Costa del Sol without a little coast and sun. Most tourists stick to the convenient La Malagueta Beach, but if you've got more than a couple hours in Málaga, you can take a taxi to less crowded but equally beautiful beaches to the east, like Playamar or Playa de Burriana.

Plaza de la Merced in Malaga, Spain

Paint With Picasso

The most obvious way to follow Málaga's Picasso trail is to visit the Picasso Museum, which has many pieces you won't find anywhere else. You can also visit the artist's birthplace, or take a "Ride With Picasso" bike tour that features Picasso-focused city sightseeing, including Plaza de Merced, where the formidable painter took his first steps as a child.

Gambas Pil Pil shrimp dish in a bowl

Local Cuisine

Seafood is the focus of gastronomy in Málaga. Don't miss the city's signature dish of gambas al pil-pil, flash-fried fresh prawns with garlic, paprika and chilies. During your Málaga cruise, order a basket of pescado frito, an array of local white fish, clams and other seafood breaded and fried. Finish up with tarta malaguena, a cake made with almonds and raisins, and a glass of Málaga dessert wine.

Ceramic pottery for sale in Spain

Shopping

Pop into a local wine shop to take a bottle of Málaga dessert wine back home with you. Málaga cruises provide access to an eclectic range of other souvenirs, like hand-painted Andalusian ceramics or handmade fans to help you beat the heat. You can also find some of Spain's best olive oil here — pick up some of this cloudy, spicy liquid gold from the Ataranzas Market.

INSIDER TIP

The center of Málaga is relatively small and walkable, but don't take this for granted — three to five hours will pass quickly.

DAY 12 - DOCKED

Seville (Cadiz), Spain

ARRIVES:
7:00 AM
DEPARTS:
3:00 PM

Spanish Adventure

Seville’s distinct personality is intoxicating. Wander its narrow streets and you’ll discover palaces built by Moorish kings in Old Town and lively tapas bars in Santa Cruz. Admire the lavish stylings of Plaza de España, and stroll through greenery at Maria Luisa Park. Stand in Spain’s oldest bullfighting ring. Marvel at Spanish masterworks at the Museum of Fine Arts. Or breathe in citywide views from Torre del Oro.

View of the Seville, Spain cityscape
A canal going through the Spain Square in Seville
A bull fighting arena is Seville, Spain

Seville’s distinct personality is intoxicating. Wander its narrow streets and you’ll discover palaces built by Moorish kings in Old Town and lively tapas bars in Santa Cruz. Admire the lavish stylings of Plaza de España, and stroll through greenery at Maria Luisa Park. Stand in Spain’s oldest bullfighting ring. Marvel at Spanish masterworks at the Museum of Fine Arts. Or breathe in citywide views from Torre del Oro.

View of the Seville, Spain cityscape
A canal going through the Spain Square in Seville
A bull fighting arena is Seville, Spain
Things To Do

in Seville (Cadiz)

View of the courtyard in the Alcazar Palace

PALATIAL PROPORTIONS

Trace Seville’s more than 1,000-year history among the regal rooms of Alcazar palace. This UNESCO World Heritage Site at the city’s core is not only home to a mixture of architecture styles, but also some of Europe’s oldest gardens.

The Seville Cathedral in Seville, Spain

GOTHIC GLORIES

Enter Seville Cathedral, one of the world’s largest gothic churches, to explore its five naves and see the tomb of Spanish explorer Christopher Columbus. The attached Giralda Tower stands as the old minaret of an Arab mosque— and a climb to the top rewards you with sweeping views of the city.

A flamenco dancer in Seville, Spain

SETTING THE STAGE

From the first note plucked on the guitar to the clamor of castanets, a sevillana flamenco show is altogether captivating. First trace the history of this mysterious art at the Museo del Baile Flamenco, viewing historical photos, dresses and shawls. Then experience the thrill of a live performance for yourself in a local flamenco tablao.

A tapas plate with serrano ham, cheese, and olives

LOCAL CUISINE

The tradition of Spanish tapas supposedly started in Seville, and here you can nosh on small bites of cured meats, cheeses and olives aplenty. Try cold gazpacho soup or a serranito sandwich. Sweet lovers indulge in churros and pestiños (honey-infused fritters). Cadiz is the area’s seafood capital, while Huelva makes tasty goat’s milk cheese — and nearby Jerez pumps out gallons of fino (dry sherry wine).

Flamenco shoes for sale in Spain

SHOPPING

Hit the Triana neighborhood for authentic Spanish azulejos (ceramic tiles), or Calle Sierpes for silk shawls. Buy flamenco wear along Calle Cuna and bullfighting posters in Plaza de Toros. Other stores around town sell traditional espadrilles, while El Jueves street market is best for books and artwork.

INSIDER TIP

The train ride from Cadiz to Seville is approximately 90 minutes each way.

DAY 13 - AT SEA

CRUISING

SUN DRENCHED DAYS

Kids Splashing Mom at Splashaway Bay Water Park
Relaxing Day at the Solarium

Kids Splashing Mom at Splashaway Bay Water Park
Relaxing Day at the Solarium

THINGS TO DO

Girl Getting Splashed on Harmony of the Seas
Splashaway Bay℠

FUN BY THE GALLON

The fun comes in gallons. This bigger, better kids aqua park features slides, water cannons, waterfalls and more. And when the drench bucket gets full, everyone gets wet.

Beautiful Night on the Pool Deck
Whirlpools

ENJOY SOME BUBBLY

It’s easy to let every thought melt away while relaxing in a whirlpool, especially when you’re soaking up ocean views, too.

DAY 14 - AT SEA

CRUISING

SHOW STOPPERS

Performers on stage with a big book behind them during the Freedom of the Once Upon a Time Cruise Show,
Performers singing and dancing on stage to the Grease Broadway show on Harmony.

Performers on stage with a big book behind them during the Freedom of the Once Upon a Time Cruise Show,
Performers singing and dancing on stage to the Grease Broadway show on Harmony.

Performer dress in green on fantasy like stage during the Freedom of the Once Upon a Time Cruise Show
Once Upon A Time

A STORYBOOK SPECTACULAR

Settle in for the rarely told side of your favorite fairy tales in a colorful spectacle for all those who never want to grow up.

Couples dancing on stage to Grease Broadway show on Harmony.
Grease

THE THRILLS ARE MULTIPLYIN'

Slick back your hair and pack your poodle skirts. Summer lovin' is in the air with an all new larger than life take on Broadway's hit musical, Grease.

DAY 15 - Arrival Day

Southampton, England

ARRIVES:
5:30 AM
PRIME ENGLISH

COUNTRYSIDE

Your adventure doesn't have to end once you've gotten back to Southampton. Before you go, spend a few days exploring the quaint English towns of the Hampshire region like Winchester, the ancient capital, or the pretty market town of Romsey. This village is also home to the Romsey Abbey, one of the most magnificent churches in Southern England thanks to its round Norman arches and lofty nave.

Yachts docked at the Ocean Village Marina in Southampton, England
The Netley Abbey ruins in Southampton, England
The historic Calshot Castle at the entrance of Southampton, England

Your adventure doesn't have to end once you've gotten back to Southampton. Before you go, spend a few days exploring the quaint English towns of the Hampshire region like Winchester, the ancient capital, or the pretty market town of Romsey. This village is also home to the Romsey Abbey, one of the most magnificent churches in Southern England thanks to its round Norman arches and lofty nave.

Yachts docked at the Ocean Village Marina in Southampton, England
The Netley Abbey ruins in Southampton, England
The historic Calshot Castle at the entrance of Southampton, England
Things To Do

in Southampton

View of Stonehenge in England

Prehistoric Adventure

Located just an hour from Southampton, Stonehenge is one of the most well-known prehistoric sites in all of Europe. Wander around the miraculous stone circle and transport yourself back in time when Neolithic engineers used only simple tools to build the huge monument — it's believed they hauled those massive stones over 240 miles from Wales without the use of machines.

The entrance to the SeaCity Museum in Southampton, England

A Port of Importance

Southampton is home to one of the largest ports in the UK and millions of travelers pass through each year. In 1912, the most famous of those travelers would pass through as they set out to America onboard the Titanic. Southampton's SeaCity museum gives you the opportunity to learn more about the events that happened aboard that famous ship.

Close up view of The Bargate gatehouse in Southampton, England

Play Knights in Armor

Step back into the medieval era and walk the old walls of the city. Built to protect the town from attack by sea, most of the wall is still standing, leaving visitors a spectacular view of Southampton and the sea. Watch as boats enter the port city, and see how it would have been if you were a knight on watch hundreds of years ago.

Traditional fish and chips in England

Local Cuisine

Head to the pub for a refreshing glass of ale to pair with crispy, mouthwatering fish and chips. If fried food isn't your thing, go in for a salad with fresh watercress, the peppery green that the Hampshire region is famous for. You'll also find upscale fare based on England's most-loved flavors: Try chicken with Indian-inspired vegetable pakora and tandoori puree or braised Hampshire beef with ale cream.

Various antiques at a market

Shopping

Shop for big-name brands galore at Westquay Shopping Centre, the premier shopping destination of the South Coast. Head to Bedford Place for independent shops and boutiques — the country's oldest traditional shoemaker is located here. On weekends, wander down the road to Bar Street to check out the local market for antiques, crafts, vintage accessories and jewelry.

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