Holland America Line

12-Day Mediterranean Romance

 
 
12-Day Mediterranean Romance
Starting from $2,099*

Venice, Italy to Barcelona, Spain


Ship: ms Veendam


Departure Date :

May 27 2019

Optional tours are available from most ports for an additional charge.

 

Itinerary

 
Day Venice, Italy
Departs 09:00 PM
"When I went to Venice, my dream became my address," wrote Lord Byron, just one of many famous figures who found a haven in this fantasy city. This enchanted land was built on stilts, set into the water by ancient Venetians seeking refuge from the harsh realities of landlocked life. And Venice, Italy still offers a palpable feeling of escape from the real world today. When you cruise into the lagoon and step onto what passes for solid ground, you'll still be very much on the water. Venice is a floating labyrinth of reflections, with mirror and glass sights everywhere, from glorious Venetian architecture echoed in the canal waters to the marble palaces that shimmer in the sky. And although Carnivale is only held once a year, being in Venice on any day is like going to a festival with plenty of vibrant things to do and attractions to see. Locals seem to love the many sightseeing visitors who arrive each year, and Venice will openly reveal her charms even to those who are only here for a few hours, an afternoon or a magical evening.
Venice, Italy
 
 
Day At Sea

 
 
Day Dubrovnik, Croatia
Arrives 08:00 AM Departs 06:00 PM
On the southern end of Croatia's Adriatic coast, Dubrovnik staked its claim to glory during the 450 years it existed as the independent Ragusan Republic, shoulder to shoulder with mighty forces like Venice and the Ottoman Empire. Once a renowned seafaring, shipbuilding and trading center, today it's an enchanting tourist destination. Dubrovnik seduces sightseeing visitors with its polished (and very clean!) limestone streets, theatrical architecture, charming cafés, welcoming restaurants and distinctive shops along scenic side streets. The natural backdrop, much of which is protected, consists of pine and cypress forests and the shimmering Adriatic, dotted with uninhabited islands. Visitors quickly discover that the wider Dubrovnik area is just as striking as its main attraction—the Old Town.
Dubrovnik, Croatia
 
 
Day Sarande, Albania
Arrives 08:00 AM Departs 05:00 PM
"While travelers have been visiting the Albanian Riviera since antiquity, the region is, with reason, often described as up-and-coming. Long overlooked because of Albania's political isolation from the rest of Europe, this 80-kilometer (50-mile) stretch of the northern Ionian Sea has seaside towns and stunning blue waters that visitors are now rediscovering. Strange concrete pillboxes are still visible, but other vestiges of the Communist era are thankfully fading away. The southern anchor of this coast is Sarandë, whose ancient inhabitants were said to be the descendants of the ancient Greek hero Achilles. Like a mini San Francisco, the city is built around a series of stairs that lead from the top of the hill, dominated by a castle, down to the seafront. Its easy access to the sea helps explain the city’s reputation for serving excellent, fresh seafood. Sarandë is also a convenient base from which to visit a plethora of ancient ruins and UNESCO World Heritage Sites. "
Sarande, Albania
 
 
Day Katakolon (Olympia), Greece
Arrives 08:00 AM Departs 05:00 PM
"The port of Katakolon is the gateway to the Peloponnese, one of Greece’s most intriguing and least well-known areas. Beyond the region’s famous site of ancient Olympia—one of the most treasured remnants of the classical world—the Peloponnese gets little of the glory given the Greek islands and Athens. And it deserves much more, as you’re about to discover. A distinctly Greek welcome can be experienced here like nowhere else. The region reveals what it means to be Greek: traditions that go back thousands of years, simple but delicious and healthy cuisine, towering mountains, crystal blue seas and, above all, the true hospitality of the people. In Greek, xenos means ""stranger,"" but the word also means ""guest,"" and a respectful traveler will be treated like a favored friend."
Katakolon (Olympia), Greece
 
 
Day At Sea

 
 
Day Naples (Pompeii), Italy
Arrives 08:00 AM Departs 06:00 PM
"Rising behind the wide curve of its bay with brooding Mount Vesuvius and the deep blue sea as a backdrop, Naples, Italy enjoys a magnificent natural setting. It is the third-largest city in Italy after Rome and Milan, and arguably the most colorful and seductive of them all: Splendor and squalor live side by side in 21st-century Naples, and the mix is intoxicating. Home to world-class museums and attractions, superb restaurants, eclectic shopping, a thriving contemporary art scene and an edgy, vibrant street life, Naples has something for everyone. But once you’ve had enough of the pounding traffic and jostling crowds while sightseeing in Naples, there are endless opportunities for exploration further afield. The celebrated Roman ruins of Pompeii and Herculaneum, both victims of Vesuvius’ devastating 79 C.E. eruption, lie just south of the city. The delightful town of Sorrento and the magnificent scenery of the Amalfi Coast are within easy reach, and the dolce vita glamour of Capri—not to mention the healing thermal waters of Ischia—are a short hydrofoil hop from the mainland. Naples and its surrounding area offer a perfect mix of cultural and natural attractions. "
Naples (Pompeii), Italy
 
 
Day Civitavecchia (Rome), Italy
Arrives 07:00 AM Departs 09:00 PM
Originally built by Emperor Trajan who had a villa here, Civitavecchia has flourished as a major port for Rome since the 13th century. Today it is an important ferry terminal and for many travelers the gateway to the Eternal City, Rome. The Renaissance fortifications that surround the harbor area were begun by Bramante and completed by Michelangelo in 1535.
Civitavecchia (Rome), Italy
 
 
Day Livorno (Florence/Pisa), Italy
Arrives 08:00 AM Departs 08:00 PM
"The Renaissance-era port city of Livorno, Italy, gateway to Pisa, Florence and the rest of the attractions of Tuscany, is characterized by its solid 16th-century Fortezza and the charming canal network known as Venezia Nuova. It’s also famous for cacciucco, a spicy fish stew. To the north of Livorno, not far from the mouth of the river Arno, lies Pisa, an attractive university city best known for its Leaning Tower. Some 60 miles to the east, and also set on the Arno, is Florence, Tuscany's capital. The concentration of artistic treasures and cultural things to do in Tuscany, from museums and cloisters to bridges and chapels, is second to none—but there is lots more besides sightseeing in Florence. The food and drink culture in Florence takes in tripe stands and hole-in-the-wall wine bars as well as embracing gourmet restaurants and plenty of down-to-earth family-run trattorias. The shopping scene offers the designer stores of Via Tornabuoni and Via Roma, but there are plenty of quirky, independent boutiques too. And then there is Florence’s traditions of leather work, marbled paper, book-binding and furniture restoration. Explore the sights of the arty Oltrarno neighborhood for artisan workshops, great cafés, bars and restaurants and an authentically Florentine atmosphere. "
Livorno (Florence/Pisa), Italy
 
 
Day Monte Carlo, Monaco
Arrives 08:00 AM Departs 11:00 PM
"The tiny and wealthy principality of Monaco, ruled by Prince Albert II, is dominated by the attractions in the resort quarter, Monte Carlo, with its casino, internationally acclaimed Opera House and the Triangle d’Or shopping area. The cliffs of Le Rocher de Monaco rise above the Mediterranean, the strategic stronghold of the Grimaldi family of Genoa who assumed power of this unstable region in 1297. The principality was a quiet backwater until the 1850s when trains put the sun-soaked destination within easy reach of affluent French and British travelers looking for an escape and relaxing things to do. Prince Charles III quickly understood what it would take to seduce the new tourists, and created a Belle Epoque resort featuring the mythic Casino de Monte-Carlo. Sitting on the coast like a precious gemstone, Monte Carlo and Monaco still draw an international jet-set crowd. The Palace commands from Monaco-ville, called Le Rocher by locals, and high-rises make the most of precious land with public elevators in lieu of sidewalks in this steep country. Superyachts fill the port, ultraluxury cars dominate the road and outrageous jewels sparkle under the night sky in an eternal promise that in some places, fairy tales really do come true."
Monte Carlo, Monaco
 
 
Day Toulon, France
Arrives 08:00 AM Departs 06:00 PM
"The sun-dappled port of Toulon lies at the very heart of the French Riviera, halfway between Marseille and St.-Tropez. The pleasant city of some 200,000 has a long history. It was settled as early as the 7th century B.C.E. by Greek colonists, followed by the Romans in the 2nd century B.C.E. The city is best known as a center for the French Navy, beginning in the 15th century and continuing to today. The harborfront fortifications are only the most obvious reminders of this legacy. Toulon's cityscape was shaped by the preeminent city planner of the 19th century, Baron Haussmann. Before he reimagined Paris, Hausmann was the prefect of Var (the region of which Toulon is the capital) and the city’s upper town served as a trial run of his ideas on urban design. Buildings from that era include France’s second-largest opera house as well as the Galeries Lafayette and a number of stately streets and squares."
Toulon, France
 
 
Day Barcelona, Spain
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On the northeast coast of Spain, overlooking the Mediterranean, Barcelona is a vibrant port city, packed with centuries of iconic art and architecture—Gaudí and Picasso both called it home—and lined with sunny white-sand beaches. Explore the Catalan capital's tourist attractions and historic neighborhoods, Modernisme and world-renowned art museums, galleries and local crafts shops—some of which are centuries old and stock traditional Catalan wares. After you see the sights, there are lively tapas bars around every corner where you can stop for a drink, a café amb llet (Catalan for espresso with steamed milk) or a snack, no matter the hour. Green spaces for picnics, long walks and respite from the hustle and bustle are scattered throughout Barcelona's attractions: There's Gaudí's mosaic-decorated park, a neoclassical maze at the Laberint d'Horta, as well as plenty of high places (mountains, monuments and edifices) where sightseeing visitors can take in the view. A short trip from Barcelona by car or train, luxury outlets, cava wineries, a mountaintop abbey and the sandy beaches of the Mediterranean coast await.
Barcelona, Spain
 
 
Day Barcelona, Spain
Arrives 12:00 PM
On the northeast coast of Spain, overlooking the Mediterranean, Barcelona is a vibrant port city, packed with centuries of iconic art and architecture—Gaudí and Picasso both called it home—and lined with sunny white-sand beaches. Explore the Catalan capital's tourist attractions and historic neighborhoods, Modernisme and world-renowned art museums, galleries and local crafts shops—some of which are centuries old and stock traditional Catalan wares. After you see the sights, there are lively tapas bars around every corner where you can stop for a drink, a café amb llet (Catalan for espresso with steamed milk) or a snack, no matter the hour. Green spaces for picnics, long walks and respite from the hustle and bustle are scattered throughout Barcelona's attractions: There's Gaudí's mosaic-decorated park, a neoclassical maze at the Laberint d'Horta, as well as plenty of high places (mountains, monuments and edifices) where sightseeing visitors can take in the view. A short trip from Barcelona by car or train, luxury outlets, cava wineries, a mountaintop abbey and the sandy beaches of the Mediterranean coast await.
Barcelona, Spain
 
 
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