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Barcelona, the self-confident and progressive capital of Spain, is a tremendous place to be. Though it boasts outstanding Gothic and Art Nouveau buildings, and some great museums – most notably those dedicated to Picasso and Catalan art – it is above all a place where there's enjoyment simply in walking the streets, stopping in at bars and cafés, drinking in the atmosphere. A thriving port and the most prosperous commercial centre in Spain, it has a sophistication and cultural dynamism way ahead of the rest of the country. In part this reflects the city's proximity to France, whose influence is apparent in the elegant boulevards and imaginative cooking. But Barcelona has also evolved an individual and eclectic cultural identity, most perfectly and eccentrically expressed in the architecture of Antoni Gaudí. Scattered as Barcelona's main sights may be, the greatest concentration of interest is around the old town (La Ciutat Vella). These cramped streets above the harbor are easily manageable, and far more enjoyable, on foot. Start, as everyone else does, with the Ramblas.
Monaco is famous as Côte d’Azur’s playground. With spacious beaches, elegant hotels and lively nightlife, this tiny domain is a jet set favorite and home to some of the world's most expensive real estate. In addition to luxury hotels and beautiful beaches, Monaco is noted for mild climate and magnificent scenery. Monaco and Monte Carlo rank high on every visitor’s must-see list. Monaco-Ville is the old city and seat of Monaco’s government. The 19th-century Romanesque cathedral Prince's Palace contains impressive works of art and the tomb of Princess Grace, while the Parliament building and Oceanographic Museum, under the auspices of the Jacques Cousteau Society, offer additional sights. Monte Carlo spells sophistication, elegance, and glamour. Every year the rich and famous gather here to bask in the sun, gamble at the world’s most opulent casino and attend spectacular parties. The most splendid hotels, several fine theaters, museums and excellent restaurants cater to the elite. Nothing typifies more the elegant lifestyle of the Côte d’Azur than glamorous Monte Carlo.
Located in the northern region of Italy, La Spezia is one of Italy's biggest military and commerical harbors. Cinque Terre and Portovenere are often accessed by La Spezia.
Civitavecchia is the port city for Rome. Rome has always been and remains the Eternal City. With its splendid churches, ancient monuments and palaces, spacious parks, tree-lined boulevards, fountains, outdoor cafés and elegant shops, Rome is one of the world’s most attractive cities. Among the most famous monuments is the Colosseum where spectators watched combats between muscled gladiators and ferocious animals. Stop to see the remains of the Forum, once a political and commercial center. Rome’s squares were enhanced with such imposing structures as the Vittorio Emanuele Monument and grandiose fountains like the Fontana di Trevi. Awe at Christendom’s most magnificent church, the Sistine Chapel. The busy square Piazza Venezia is easily recognized by its imposing Vittorio Emanuele II Monument. Take a stroll to Rome's famous Trevi Fountain. Vatican City is the site of lovely St. Peter's Square and St. Peter's Basilica, where for 200 years, Renaissance masters worked on its design and created an unparalleled masterpiece. Visit Vatican Museum.
From Naples visitors can explore the rugged Amalfi coast, Italy's most romantic stretch of coastline. Near Amalfi is the resort of Positano, where visitors enjoy strolling through streets and shopping in small boutiques. Take an excursion to legendary Pompeii, an ancient Roman city covered and preserved by the debris from the violent eruption of Mount Vesuvius in 79 A.D. The monuments of this city are considered to be among the finest of any ancient city in Europe, and visitors can spend a day here learning about life in a Roman town during the first century A.D. The Cathedral of San Gennaro, a fine medieval building, has one chapel containing the tomb of Charles of Anjou, while another houses the cathedral's gold and silver treasure. Among the Christian underground burial vaults discovered in an area of suburban heights, the Catacombs of San Gennaro can be visited. Capodimonte Park - a well-kept tropical park - has a royal palace built by Charles III in 1738 that now houses Naples' picture gallery, the National Museum of Capodimonte.
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Take a step back in time and visit the old town of Kotor, one of the best-preserved medieval towns in this part of the Mediterranean. The asymmetric structure of the narrow streets and squares, combined with the awesome monuments of medieval architecture, contributed to Kotor being placed on UNESCO’s “World’s natural and cultural inheritance” list. From ancient fortification systems surrounding the city to 12th century cathedrals, Kotor is a dream come true for those who revel in history. Entrance to town from the Gurdic spring, consists of 3 separate gates, built from the 13th, 16th and 18th centuries. The Cathedral of St. Tryphon is one of the most visited and impressive churches in the city. According to some texts, the original church was erected in the 8th century and rebuilt in 1166. Two earthquakes, one in 1667 and one in 1979 seriously damaged the cathedral and it continues to be restored to this day. The city is breathtaking in every respect and only a visit will truly reveal all it has to offer.
Classed as a world heritage treasure by UNESCO, Dubrovnik is a place of ancient streets lined with stone palaces, Venetian-style buildings and bell towers. The city is enclosed by stone walls, and the highlight is a leisurely walk atop these massive walls for a great view of the city and the sea. Entering Dubrovnik, you are greeted by an impressive pedestrian promenade, the Placa, which extends before you all the way to the clock tower at the other end of town. The Orlando Tower here is a favorite meeting place. Just inside the city walls near the Pile Gate is the Franciscan Monastery housing the third-oldest functioning pharmacy in Europe, operating since 1391. For a fantastic panorama of the city, take a cable car ride to the summit of the 1,340-foot Mount Srdj.
Koper is the main Slovenian port and the entrance to the inland of the Central Europe. It is located on the "top" of Istria. Koper was an island till the 19th century. Later the town and the island were connected with the mainland. Old town centre boasts with the rich architecture and cultural monuments.
With a great historic past and incomparable art treasures, Venice is renowned as one of the world’s great cities. Its 118 islands are separated by more than 150 canals and spanned by 400 bridges. During Venice's artistic golden age many magnificent structures were erected to create world-famous masterpieces. One of the best sightseeing routes is along Grand Canal, with many palaces lining the famous waterway. St. Mark’s Square offers access to some of Venice’s most famed attractions - St. Mark’s Basilica and Doge’s Palace. From Piazza San Marco, a maze of narrow streets are lined with shops, cafés and restaurants. A popular pastime is sitting at an outdoor café facing the square while people-watching and letting the whole marvelous scenario unfold. Venice’s Murano, Burano and Torcello Islands comprise an area famous as home of Venice’s glass-blowing industry and known for their charm, skilled lace-making and medieval monuments. Relax on a gondola ride, see art treasures in museums, churches and palaces, and have a sumptuous meal - all in this incomparable city.
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Rates are cruise only, per person, based on double occupancy. Taxes, Fees and Port Expenses of $132.19 additional for all guests. Rates are subject to availability and may change without notice. Restrictions may apply.
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4801 Woodway Suite 400W
Houston, TX 77056
4801 Woodway Suite 400W Houston, TX 77056
Monday - Friday: 9:00 am - 6:00pm (CST)
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