Cruising the Rivieras of Italy, France, and Spain
Cruise along famous Mediterranean rivieras from Rome to Barcelona and explore hidden gems and cosmopolitan haunts of the rich and famous. During your voyage, you'll be immersed in the area's dynamic history, inimitable art and culture, and stunning scenery.
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The French and Italian rivieras are known for picturesque towns set against sun-drenched landscapes—and as a glamorous playground for the elite and a favorite retreat for artists and gourmands. Explore the region’s dynamic history, inimitable art and culture, stunning scenery, and World Heritage sites, accompanied by art historians Mariana Carpinisan (August 8-16) and Janetta Rebold Benton (September 19-27). Highlights include Corsica’s fortified town of Bonifacio, Sardinia’s dazzling Costa Smeralda, the treasures of Florence (or Pisa and Lucca), and the cliff-side villages of the Italian Riviera’s Cinque Terre. Along the enchanting Côte d’Azur, enjoy specially arranged excursions to alluring Monaco, the epitome of Riviera chic; cosmopolitan Cannes, the unofficial capital of the French Riviera; and Nice, with its renowned Musée Marc Chagall. Stop off to visit the medieval fortified town of Carcassonne and cruise along the Spanish coastline to conclude in Barcelona.
Join us for this seven-night cruise, from Rome to Barcelona, aboard the exclusively chartered, five-star M.V. Tere Moana, relaunched in 2013 after a multimillion-dollar refurbishment and featuring only 45 deluxe staterooms. Optional extensions to Rome and Barcelona are also offered.
Days 1-2 — U.S., Civitavecchia, Italy
Depart the U.S. for Italy. Upon arrival, embark the five-star M.V. Tere Moana and sail this evening. (R,D)
Day 3 — Bonifacio, Corsica, France, Porto Cervo, Costa Smeralda, Sardinia
Dock in the ancient town of Bonifacio, a sparkling harbor with sheer white limestone cliffs, located at the southern tip of the island of Corsica. This beautiful port’s fundamentally French character bears a strong Italian imprint, manifest in the islanders’ French-Italian dialect. Transfer by small train for the excursion featuring a walk through the medieval Old Town. Stroll the Rue des Deux-Empereurs, where Charles V and Napoleon once lodged, and see the Gothic Church of St-Dominique and the famous Grain de Sable limestone formation.
Sardinia’s Costa Smeralda (“Emerald Coast”) features remote seaside villages, glamorous villas, a rugged landscape rising from exquisite white sand beaches, and azure waters plied by sleek luxury yachts. This afternoon, anchor near Porto Cervo, a haven for celebrities. The tour takes you to the well-preserved granite Nuraghe Albucciu, one of the Bronze-Age fortresses unique to Sardinia. (B,L,D)
Day 4 — Livorno, Italy, for Florence or Pisa and Lucca
Enjoy the rolling Tuscan landscape of vineyards and cypresses en route to Florence (a World Heritage site), birthplace of the Renaissance. This iconic site is a treasure trove of unparalleled achievements in art, architecture, and literature. Admire Brunelleschi’s soaring dome; Ghiberti’s “Doors of Paradise” depicting scenes from the Old Testament in cast bronze; and Michelangelo’s David, considered one of his crowning achievements.
Alternatively, visit the beautifully preserved medieval cities of Lucca and Pisa, just a short, scenic drive from Livorno. Lucca’s intact Renaissance city walls are now a promenade for pedestrians, and its elaborate 11th-century Cathedral of San Martino is still an important symbol of the city. Pisa’s famous Piazza dei Miracoli showcases thelegendary Leaning Tower, the impressive 11th-century Duomo and the largest baptistery in Italy. (B,D)
Day 5 — Porto Venere for Cinque Terre, Portofino
From Porto Venere’s small harbor, board a private boat and cruise to villages of the Cinque Terre. This World Heritage Site is a series of five fishing villages with lovely pastel homes clinging to remote cliffs that jut into the Ligurian Sea. Discover the spectacular nuances of the towns of Riomaggiore, Manarola, and Vernazza, linked by a walking path that offers marvelous views of the charming coves, hidden beaches, and terraced vineyards that produce the famous dessert wine Sciacchetrà.
Portofino is the perfect village for a leisurely afternoon on the Italian Riviera. Visit the17th-century San Giorgio Church, home to the relics of this dragon-slaying saint; stroll the pedestrian-only streets; or sip a cappuccino in an outdoor café. (B,L,D)
Day 6 — Monte Carlo, Monaco
The principality of Monaco’s dazzling historic district, Monte Carlo, offers an intoxicating mixture of princely sights and Casino Royale intrigue and is famous for its Grand Casino. On the excursion, admire the legendary belle-époque architecture and enjoy a walking tour on the Rock of Monaco. See the changing of the guards at the Prince’s Palace, home of Europe’s longest-reigning dynasty, and the neo-Romanesque Cathedral of St. Nicholas, where Princess Grace is interred. (B,L,D)
Day 7 — Nice, France, Cannes
One of the oldest human settlements in the world with archeological sites dating to the Lower Paleolithic period, Nice remains rich in its traditions and centuries‑old culture. This capital of the Côte d’Azur is bursting with the colors that inspired Chagall and Matisse: the azure waters of the Mediterranean, terra cotta roofs, ocher and yellow houses, emerald green gardens, budding flower markets and marbled tile squares of Baroque and French theaters. On the excursion, visit the Musée Marc Chagall, home to the largest collection of the artist’s works, including the 17-canvas Biblical Message. Stroll the outdoor flower market before reboarding the ship for lunch and cruise to Cannes.
Settled as a fishing village by monks, Cannes today is the quintessence of dazzling Riviera allure and host of the international film festival. Join the shore excursion following the picturesque, palm-lined La Croisette promenade to the medieval lanes, churches and castle of Le Suquet, followed by a visit to nearby Vallauris, where Pablo Picasso discovered his passion for ceramics. See the bay of Golfe-Juan, where Napoleon Bonaparte landed after his escape from exile and began his 100-day reign that ended at Waterloo.
Join the Captain for a farewell reception this evening. (B,L,D)
Day 8 — Carcassonne
Settled on the frontier between France and Spain along ancient trade routes that link the Atlantic with the Mediterranean and Iberian Peninsula, the medieval core of Carcassonne, a World Heritage Site, has been occupied since the sixth century B.C. Fortified by the Romans, conquered by the Visigoths in the fifth century, and overrun by Persians in the seventh century, Carcassonne also repelled centuries of invading Franks and hoards of Barbarians. As you walk the cobblestone streets, past drawbridges and watchtowers, note how each has left an indelible influence on the extraordinary architecture and artistic heritage of this city. After lunch on your own, visit the Romanesque Abbey of Fontfroide. (B,R,D)
Day 8 — Barcelona, Spain, U.S.
Upon arrival in Barcelona, disembark and continue on the Barcelona Post-Cruise Option, or depart for the U.S. (B)
Pre- and Post-Cruise Options and Optional Excursions are available at additional cost. Details will be included with your reservation confirmation.