5 Amazing Places to Visit Whilst on a Mediterranean Cruise
With twenty one modern states having a coastline along the beautiful Mediterranean Sea, it’s no wonder that this is a firm favourite in terms of a cruising destination. Cruising the Mediterranean is one affordable way to take in the sights and sounds of many different European countries but with so many great ports and cities to choose from, how do you make the decision about choice of what to see?
A cruise around the eastern Mediterranean could see you visit the beautiful historic city of Athens, Greece. With monuments such as the Acropolis and the National Archaeological Museum, you’ll be amazed as well as in awe of the incredible Greek art; don’t forget you’ll need plenty of time to admire the numerous sculptures, vases, silverware and glassware.
A few more days here would be perfect for those with a keen eye for architecture. The marvels that lie in the orthodox monasteries on Hydra Island are not to be missed and are available as a separate excursion. Other ‘not to be missed’ adventures include the National Gardens, the changing of the guard at Syntagma Square and the Temple of Poseidon.
This resort town on Turkey’s Aegean coast has been settled by many civilisations since 3,000BC and, as a result, has been at the hub of art and culture.
You can explore the ruins of the ancient city of Ephesus, once a thriving Greek city location and then a major Roman settlement. The city was famed for having one of the seven wonders of the ancient world, the Temple of Artemis. You can take independent tours to view these magnificent ruins, all of which are relatively inexpensive.
But you don’t have to travel out of Kusadasi; there are plenty of things to see and do around the port itself as well as an opportunity to relax on the many beautiful beaches. Or if you fancy something more energetic demanding, there are several water parks around the port too.
Taking a cruise around the Western Mediterranean is not complete without a visit to possibly the most beautiful city in the world, Rome.
This mainly Roman Catholic city has so many attractions that it is almost impossible to list them all. The cityscape of Rome boasts many attractions and no matter how much – or how little – time you have, there are several sights to take in. St Peter’s Square is possibly one of the most iconic sights of Rome. And with the Colosseum, the Pantheon and the exhibits of the Vatican all waiting to be discovered by you, Rome has something to offer everyone.
Pisa & Florence, Italy
Pisa and Florence are two stops you could make whilst on your Mediterranean cruise, especially as they are so close to each other and offer you another flavour of what Italy has to offer.
If you have a couple of days you can take in the quirky delights of the freestanding bell tower, the Tower of Pisa. Originally standing at an angle of 5.5 degrees, after restoration work in 2001, this great tourist attraction now leans at a slightly safer 3.99 degrees. There are also many other attractions to visit whilst in Pisa, a city which has retained most of its medieval appearance, including and is a city that boasts a number of fantastic museums.
Renaissance style Florence is the capital city of the Tuscany region. Its beauty is breath-taking and the good news here is that Florence is a compact city, easily accessible and viewable by foot, although public transport is also quite reasonable priced. Florence Cathedral, the Duomo is the fourth largest cathedral in the world and has a plethora of palaces and museums you can visit and admire, as well as some interesting art galleries.
Livorno is the port of call for an excursion to Pisa and Florence; with Florence only being around a 60 minutes train ride away, whilst Pisa is much closer.
The streets of Malta’s capital city exhibit an eclectic mix of architecture from early 16th Century to Modernism, meaning Malta is a great stop on your Mediterranean Cruise, especially if you are a history buff.
Benjamin Disraeli was quoted as saying in 1830 that Valletta was “a city of palaces built by gentlemen for gentlemen”, and is a region city that offers a relaxed atmosphere. After exploring the Hypogeum, (one of the oldest burial sites in the world), St John’s cathedral and the Grandmaster’s Palace you can take refreshments in one of the many beautiful restaurants and cafes along the sea front. You can end your stop at this port with some souvenir hunting down one of the many picturesque streets.
Choosing which ports and cities to visit on your Mediterranean cruise is no easy feat. The great thing about cruising the Mediterranean is that, no matter where you choose to visit, and no matter for how long, you won’t be disappointed. Cruising the Mediterranean is not only a fabulous, relaxing holiday but also a great way to take in the sights and culture of several European countries that otherwise you might not get the chance to see.
Image credits: Wikipedia 1 and 2