Feel the rhythm of a Spanish tempo
Circumnavigate the Iberian Peninsula and uncover the historic treasures of Spain. Explore the Roman past and tranquil beauty of Cartagena and its Murcia province. Visit Málaga, the city of Picasso’s birth, and Granada’s Alhambra palace. Cruise through the Strait of Gibraltar and into the scenic bay of Vigo, gateway to Santiago de Compostela. This enlightening itinerary is complemented by a call on England’s maritime city of Portsmouth.
Barcelona, Spain / London (Tilbury), England
2024 Sailings on January
* Please check with us for dates & pricing
Cruise fare from $3,399.0 per person
* Please check with us for dates & pricing
Arrive in Barcelona and step on board your ship. Settle in to your veranda stateroom and explore. As we remain in port until the afternoon, you may have time to see some of Barcelona’s sights. The vibrant Las Ramblas boulevard is just 25 minutes away.
The charms of Murcia lie in its embrace of its rural pleasures. Surrounded by farmland and fertile huertas, Murcianos are never at a loss for produce freshly plucked from “Europe’s orchard.” They, in turn, live by the patient cycle of the harvest, going about their days at a leisurely pace. The Moors founded the city in 825 and introduced a vast irrigation network for crops and for city use. They were expelled by Ferdinand III of Castile in 1243. Murcia province remained a vassal kingdom until 1812 and became an autonomous region of Spain in 1982.
Granada is a splendid canvas of Moorish architecture, rich Andalusian tradition and remarkable history. It was the last stronghold of the Moorish Nasrid dynasty, whose 250-year reign ended during the 1492 reconquest of Spain by Catholic monarchs. The grand Granada Cathedral is a soaring celebration of that victory; its Royal Chapel holds the tombs of Queen Isabel and King Ferdinand, the celebrated pair who oversaw the triumph. Their magnificent fortress-palace, the Alhambra, was long the stronghold of Moors, and so offers a magnificent blend of Islamic and Christian detail.
Sail the gateway between the Atlantic and the Mediterranean. Its defining landmark, the soaring Rock of Gibraltar, was one of the Pillars of Hercules of ancient myth. As you sail, explore our well-curated library, tucked in a private alcove of The Living Room, and select from a broad range of titles. Read a book by the Main Pool, a calming oasis in any weather with its retractable roof, allowing for year-round swimming.
Call on Vigo today, Spain’s “Gateway to the Atlantic” and one of the most historic cities on the northwestern coast of Galicia. For stunning views of its dramatic bay, ascend to El Castro Mount. Then get a closer look at Vigo’s elegant thoroughfares and plazas and the French gardens of Castrelos Park. Alternately, visit the revered city of Santiago de Compostela, one of medieval Europe’s most important pilgrimage sites.
Perhaps you will get a morning workout at the Fitness Center and soothe your body with a hot sauna and a few minutes amid the refreshingly chilled air of the Snow Grotto. In the evening, enjoy cocktails in the Explorers’ Lounge and an authentic Italian meal at Manfredi’s Italian Restaurant.
You’ll enjoy a picturesque arrival into Portsmouth, sailing between Napoleonic forts in the Solent Strait and passing stunning citadels at the harbor’s entrance. Then discover the city’s prestigious maritime past. This historic naval port houses such historic vessels as Henry VIII’s Tudor battleship Mary Rose and Lord Nelson’s HMS Victory. Stroll the docklands of the rejuvenated waterfront and visit the D-Day Museum, commemorating the preparations for the Allied landings of the massive fleet that departed here on June 6, 1944.
Situated on the north bank of the Thames, Tilbury is steeped in history. The town is most famous as the site of a fortress built by Henry VIII to defend London from invasion by ships coming up the Thames. Upriver, the city is home to iconic power centers—Buckingham Palace, the Houses of Parliament, Westminster Abbey—from which the fate of the British Empire rose and wavered. Today, the city thrives amid a long tradition of arts and architectural innovation—from Shakespeare’s Globe Theater to West End musicals, from Tower Bridge to the London Eye. After breakfast, disembark your ship and journey home.
* One shore excursion included per port; all others available at an extra charge.