Make your own history on a 6-day cruise along the Adriatic. Linger at the Dominican Monastery among the finest collection of Renaissance paintings in Dubrovnik before journeying to a historic cathedral holding one of the best collections of gold and silver in Europe. In Kotor, savour local flavours and spectacular views of mountains rising from Boka Bay. Collections of classical and early Christian antiquities including sculptures and ceramics are housed in the National Museum of Antiquities in Ravenna -where Dante completed his 14th century masterpiece The Divine Comedy.
You could start a discussion about Venice by praising its restaurants, wine bars, marble churches or blown glass. But you probably won't. You'll likely start with the fact that Venice is built on water. It is a place where people either float slowly down palace-lined man-made waterways or stroll down narrow alleyways. There's no more extraordinary place to find yourself, or lose yourself. Be sure to stay in Venice before your next European cruise.
Despite the magnificent 13th century walls that surround the city, Dubrovnik is one of the most welcoming cruise destinations in all of Europe. Dubbed “the pearl of the Adriatic” by the poet, Lord Byron, this Croatian city exudes romantic charm and beautiful scenery with its shimmering marble streets, centuries-old buildings capped by bright orange roofs, and lovely beaches ensconced between awesome rocky ledges.
Tucked away between the mountains and the Bay of Kotor, one of the most indented parts of the Adriatic Sea, is where you'll find the picturesque town of Kotor. As you arrive at this secluded city, you'll notice the dramatic 65-foot high protective walls, which date back to the Venetian period during the 9th century. Stroll the labyrinth of cobbled streets with cozy cafes and craft shops as you marvel the graceful old buildings. Listed as a UNESCO World Natural and Historical Heritage Site, Kotor is also world-famous as a premier yachting and sailing destination.
One of the lushest of the Greek Isles, Corfu is rimmed in dramatic blue waters and topped with tranquil hillside villages. A collection of quaint cafes in the town of Corfu feels very continental, but the island's secluded coves and sandy beaches could only be found in the Greek Isles.
Along the northeast coast of Italy is where you'll discover the historic town of Ravenna. Once a thriving seaport in ancient times (it now lies five miles inland), Ravenna was also the westernmost pillar of the Byzantine Empire. Just as everyone who visits, you too will marvel at the exquisite Byzantine mosaics. At first glance the old streets, peaceful squares and fine shops resemble any other Italian city, but the Byzantine domes of its churches still evoke its Eastern heritage. As an added bonus, Ravenna is a great place to taste the famously delicious food of the Emilia-Romagna region.