Holland America Line Mediterranean Cruises
A MOSAIC OF CULTURES
By Deborah Wheeler
The Mediterranean Sea is known for its beautiful climate, sunny coastlines, and cultural variety. Holland America Line (HAL) provides some of the best cruises available in the Mediterranean. Their cruises are cultural mosaics because they offer a stunning sampling of old and new cultures across the wide and appealing Mediterranean region. Their Mediterranean cruise itineraries include ports in Italy, France, Spain, Greece, Monaco, Montenegro, and others. The opportunity to see such a vast sampling of the world’s most interesting destinations in affordable luxury aboard a Holland America Line ship is unparalleled.
Some of the upcoming cruise itineraries include 7-, 10-, 12-days or more around the Mediterranean Sea. There are several one-way cruises departing from Barcelona, Spain or Venice, Italy. These single-direction cruises are especially appealing to cruisers who want to maximize their number of ports during the trip. There are also round-trip cruises from Rome or Barcelona. The round-trip departure/returns are particularly helpful for the budget-minded travelers who are able to find cost-saving flights in and out of the same city. And for those who have the time, HAL also offers the ability to combine some itineraries for a longer cruise. Barcelona, Venice, and Rome departures also provide the opportunity to enjoy a fantastic pre-cruise stay, even before you board the ship to other magical destinations.
While you could devise a Mediterranean itinerary on your own, it is unlikely that you would find it to be as enjoyable and relaxing as a cruise experience. On a cruise, you can wake up in a new country every day and move through your day at leisure. To do the same tour on your own would require extensive planning, a variety of hotels, as well as planes, trains, and automobiles moving you at a much more hurried pace. On an HAL cruise like this, all of the planning is done for you while you travel in comfort and luxurious surroundings.
In addition to all the conveniences of a cruise, the cost remains very affordable when you consider the value per day. The HAL Mediterranean cruises are available for as little as $129 per day at the time of this publication. Just try to match that price when staying in a 4 or 5 star hotel and paying for three meals a day at European prices! The price equivalent of visiting 5-6 countries and 8 or more cities, coordinated all on your own, would be considerably much more.
If you are relatively new to cruising, the HAL itineraries are just perfect for an overview of the Mediterranean. There is no better way to cover so much sea. Sailing several thousand miles during your trip allows you to see all the pieces of this spectacular cultural mosaic in one trip.
If you are a more experienced cruiser, or have been to the Mediterranean region before, you will also enjoy the itineraries offered because of the many opportunities to delve into the history of this important cultural region. The shore excursions available ensure that you have the opportunity to do more than just skim the surface of a particular port. HAL also offers options for private cars and drivers at many of the destinations so that you can create your very own personalized tours in those ports.
The number of UNESCO World Heritage Sites you can visit during a HAL Mediterranean Cruise emphasizes the appeal that has drawn tourists to this part of the world since the development of Western Civilization. From flamenco dancing in Barcelona, purchasing Greek spices in Greece, enjoying gelato in Italy, experiencing the gothic history of Montenegro, and soaking in the sunshine of the French Riviera, a Mediterranean cruise has it all.
On a Mediterranean cruise with HAL, you can enjoy your vacation exactly the way you want. Unpack just once, dine as you like, and experience the activities you love with ease. Holland America Line offers cruisers the ultimate combination of affordability, relaxation, exciting destinations, and luxury.