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Mediterranean & Europe

Mediterranean Highlights Cruise

From €609pp cruise-only
Depart From
Cruise from Haifa, Israel
Departure Date
31 Oct 2022 - 08 Nov 2022
Duration
8 nights
Destination
Israel, Crete, Italy, France, Spain
Price
From €609pp cruise-only
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Ports of call: Haifa, Israel; Chania, Crete; Rome (Civitavecchia), Italy; Florence/Pisa (Livorno), Italy; Nice (Villefranche), France; Provence (Marseilles), France; Barcelona, Spain

Board the fantastic Rhapsody of the Seas in Haifa for this eight-night cruise on the Mediterranean, visiting Crete, Italy, France and Spain.

Set on the slopes of Mount Carmel, Haifa is Israel's Mediterranean oasis. Stroll around the smart German Colony, with its restored streets settled in the 1860s lined with restaurants, cafes and art galleries. Continue toward the tropical Bah'ai Gardens, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and take a meditative walk around the 19 different terraced gardens. Cruise to Haifa, Israel and visit the Shrine of the Bab, with its striking golden dome composed of 12,000 tiles. For even better views, climb up to the Viewing Balcony to look down on the shrine and out toward the Mediterranean Sea. Perhaps it's time to relax on the beach now? Pop down to Bat Galim for windsurfing or a stroll along the boardwalk.

Chania is rich in remnants of the past. Start your adventure in Crete's second-largest city at Venetian Harbour, the entry to the old port. Soak in the vibe while wandering the narrow streets lined with shops and waterfront restaurants serving local fare like courgette fritters and sardines stuffed with herbs and sun-dried tomatoes. Then head to Souda Bay, a strategic commercial and military harbour since ancient times, where you'll find the Aptera Fortress and the oldest Ottoman building in Crete. 

Follow in the steps of gladiators in the Colosseum, make a splash in the Trevi Fountain or explore the stunning architecture of the Vatican and Sistine Chapel. In Rome you can lose yourself in fascinating history, shop for gorgeous fashions in exquisite boutiques or savour the delights of pizza, cappuccino or gelato. With numerous galleries, gardens and piazzas – ideal for people watching - you’ll find plenty to do.

One of Italy's oldest port cities, Livorno is a small but historically rich city. Check out the red-hued Fortezza Nuova, a 16th-century fortress, and the surrounding area known as Nuova Venezia ("New Venice"), and take a mini-sailboat ride through its charming canals. Cruise to Livorno and use the city as your jumping-off point to the beauty of Tuscany: Take the 30-minute drive to Pisa and snap a quintessential picture with the city's famous leaning tower. Or head to Florence — about an hour from Livorno by car or train — where you can see the unmistakable Duomo ("dome") and the Byzantine-style frescoes of Saint John's Baptistery.

Although originally called 'Nakaia', France's Nice is as delightful as its name suggests to English speakers. Take a bus or taxi into Nice's Old City to explore its history-spanning architecture and pristine French Riviera beaches with your Nice cruise. Or stick closer to Villefranche-sur-Mer, where your ship will dock, and take a day-trip to the mountaintop town of Eze. No matter how you spend your time in the de facto hub of France's Cote d'Azur, you'll enjoy the added benefit of being close to Italy, which means delectable pizza, fragrant espresso and the sounds of a second Romance language.

France's oldest city, Marseille blends ancient charm with Provencal beauty. In the morning, head to the fish market Quai des Belges, where trade has been going on for more than 2,600 years – stroll along the promenades and 18th-century warehouses, and grab a cafe au lait and a melon tarte from one of the cafes on the ground floor. Cruise to Provence and check out the Basilique Notre-Dame de la Garde: Built in the 19th century in a neo-Byzantine style, its golden statue of the Virgin and Child dominates the Marseille skyline.

It’s easy to see why Barcelona is the most-visited city in Spain. As the capital of the country’s Catalonia region, this cityscape’s cultural mosaic pieces together a 2,000-year-old hodge-podge of sun-drenched beaches, cutting edge architecture and a world-renowned dining and drinking scene.

Day 1: Haifa, Israel

Day 2: At Sea

Day 3: Chania, Crete

Day 4: At Sea

Day 5: Rome (Civitavecchia), Italy

Day 6: Florence/Pisa (Livorno), Italy

Day 7: Nice (Villefranche), France

Day 8: Provence (Marseilles), France

Day 9: Barcelona, Spain

 

Price is per person, based on 2 adults sharing, and includes:

  • 8 night Mediterranean Highlights cruise on board the Rhapsody Of The Seas, in an inside cabin

Please ask us about adding great value:

  • Flights from Ireland
  • Travel insurance
  • Upgrade your cabin type

For more information please call us on 021 427 7094 or 0818 300 205, email cruise@shandontravel.ie, request a call back using the red button or submit an enquiry through the form below.

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