5 Must-See European Ports
Photo: Park Güell in Barcelona, Spain - Photo Credit: Daniel Corneshi from Unsplash
Have you been dreaming of exploring Europe? We don’t blame you! From historic cities and silver screen cameos to breathtaking beaches and awe-inspiring ocean views, Europe is home to some of the world’s most incredible destinations. With so much to see and so many fantastic attractions, a cruise is a great way to soak up multiple cities in one easy vacation. When you book through our agency, you’ll have the expertise of a professional on your side. We can protect your vacation with travel insurance and help you understand all cancellation and refund options available. Looking for inspiration? Read on to discover five of our favorite European ports to explore on your next cruise adventure.
The Greek Isles
With world-class beaches, diverse museums and eclectic town centers bursting with old-world charm, each of the Greek Islands is a story waiting to be discovered. The Temple of Aphaia looms over Aegina, while Delos Island boasts the incredible Terrace of the Lions. Explore the world-famous Acropolis on Rhodes Island, the Akrotiri on Santorini and the renowned windmills of Mykonos. And we haven’t even mentioned the idyllic beaches, dramatic sunsets, and romance galore. In addition to its jaw-dropping scenery, the Greek Isles boast history, scenery and cuisine like few places in Europe.
Photo: Santorini, Greece - Photo Credit: Michelle Woodson Howell from Unsplash
Estonia’s medieval capital is bursting with impressive architecture, modern boutiques and a unique café culture that makes if a perfect destination for history-seekers, foodies and shopaholics alike. Venture within the ancient walls of Old Town to explore stunning Medieval landmarks like Toompea Castle, score a souvenir at a 15th Century apothecary shop or marvel at the scuplted gardens at Tsar Peter I's Kadriorg Palace. From the upper and lower levels of this beautifully preserved medieval town to its baroque palaces, a ruined 15th-century convent and the many charming guild houses, churches and squares, you’ll find plenty to explore in this delightful waterfront city.
If you’re into architecture, you can’t miss Barcelona—like Antoni Gaudí’s masterpiece La Sagrada Família with its sky-piercing spires and breathtaking mosaics or the famous La Catedral of La Rambla’s pedestrian boulevard, dating back to the 1200s. There’s far more than just architecture, too. With seven beaches spanning more than two miles of Mediterranean coastline, Barcelona’s harborfront is known for some of the world’s best sun-seeking and on-the-sea adventures. Lounge along the shore, kayak deep blue waters— or charter a fishing trip for the chance to reel in tuna, swordfish or Mediterranean spearfish.
Sitting at the mouth of the River Liffey, Ireland’s lush capital is known for its rolling green hills, remarkable castles and deep-rooted beer culture. See the largest church in Ireland at St. Patrick's Cathedral, opt for a tour of the Guinness storehouse or take a scenic drive to County Wicklow, nicknamed the "Garden of Ireland." For Harry Potter fans, don’t miss the chance to visit the library at Trinity College, Ireland’s oldest University. Housing over 200,000 ancient books in towering oak shelves, it served at J.K. Rowling’s inspiration for Hogwarts in the iconic series.
Photo: Guinness Storehouse in Dublin, Ireland - Photo Credit: Tavis Beck from Unsplash
“Game of Thrones” has nothing on the walled city of Dubrovnik, the jewel of Croatia's Adriatic coast. Dozens of locations featured in the popular series are even more incredible in real life. From the perfectly preserved Rector’s Palace, the ornate Onofrio’s Fountain, and baroque St. Blaise’s Church, the history is everywhere. Stroll through the Old Town to discover a wealth of well-preserved landmarks. Walk across the Pile Gate’s drawbridge and get lost in the buzz of the limestone-paved Stradun or take a thrilling three-minute cable car ride to the top of Mount Srd for a panoramic view of the glimmering coastline.
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Hero Image by Michelle Woodson Howell from Unsplash
Reprinted with permission from Travel Leaders Network | Guest Contributor | July 16, 2020