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Top Mediterranean Sea Experiences

Exploring the scenic French Riviera

Disembarking the cruise to take a ride to spectacular city of Florence

Snorkeling in the amazing blue Mediterranean waters

Taking a history tour and encouneting ancient Roman Ruins and fortified medieval towns

Voyaging through the Strait of Gibraltar and discovering the Spanish archipelago of the Canaries.


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Top Mediterranean Sea Attractions

French Riviera

Florence

Barcelona

Rome

Alexandria

Monaco

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Must See Mediterranean Sea Attractions

1. Florence

Overview of Florence Italy

Where art, food, and wine meet. While not directly on the coast, Florence is included in many Mediterranean tours because of its importance to Italian cuisine and culture. The capital of the famous Tuscan region in central Italy, Florence was the epicenter for the Italian Renaissance and features some of the most important pieces created by Leonardo da Vinci and Michelangelo. 

Visitors to Florence will fall in love with the city’s romantic and medieval atmosphere, bustling and rich food and wine scene, and all of the amazing sites to see in this famous city. 

2. French Riviera

There is no better place in the Mediterranean to pamper yourself and experience the lifestyle of the rich and famous than the French Riviera. The French Riviera, or the Cote d’Azur,  is the stretch of coastline in southeastern France from the city of Cassis to the Italian border. The most famous cities and regions on the Riviera are Nice, Cannes, and the Principality of Monaco. 

Characterized by expansive beaches, crystal clear water, and sheer cliff sides, Cote d’Azur first rose to prominence in the 1800s as a winter resort area. Today this area still draws in visitors with its landscapes, hotels, and casinos. 

3. Barcelona 

Barcelona Spain architecture

As Spain’s Gothic gem, Barcelona represents the mixture of cultures coming together. Influenced by the Mediterranean Sea, Spanish culture, and Catalan pride, Barcelona is one of the top destinations in all of Europe. Travelers to Barcelona will love the city’s historic central neighborhoods, especially the Gothic Quarter featuring iron balconies, small alleyways, and cozy cafes. 

One of the top things to see in Barcelona are the many works by its most famous son, Antoni Gaudi. Gaudi was a Modernism architect who designed many buildings in the city and his most famous piece is the nature-inspired cathedral La Sagrada Familia. 

4. Rome 

Ruins in Rome Italy

“The Eternal City.” Rome’s history dates back thousands of years and was the birthplace of two of the most powerful empires the world has seen, the Roman Empire and the Holy Roman Empire. Steeped in history around every corner, Rome is a history lover’s dream and a classic stop on most Italy tours. Ancient ruins stand next to apartment buildings and former stadiums are now used as running tracks. 

With so many sites to see, where do you even start? Attractions usually included on tours of Rome are the Colosseum, the Forum, the Vatican City, and the Trevi Fountain. 

5. Alexandria

Alexandria Egypt on Mediterranean coastline

Founded by Alexander the Great in 332 B.C., this Egyptian city has been one of the central hubs in both Egypt and the Mediterranean. In ancient times, the city played a key role in trade and the spread of culture throughout the region by both Alexander and the Egyptian Queen Cleopatra. The city is a combination of Egyptian, Greek, and Arab cultures with temples and houses resembling each era. 

Today the city acts as a starting point for many exhibitions and tours into Egypt since it sits at the delta of the Nile and is one of the main economic centers for the country. 

6. Marrakech

Mosque in Marrakech Morocco

Lose yourself in the ancient medina of this colorful and lively Moroccan city. Marrakech is the capital of the northwestern African country of Morocco. The city is known for its oasis feel as the city popped up out of the desert in the 11th century.

Palm trees surround this walled city with its medina, or old quarter, that houses the city’s largest marketplace. Make sure to check out the Jema el-Fnaa, Bahia Palace, and the Jardin Majorelle before you leave to see the stunning Moorish architecture and medieval lifestyle that gave life to this city.

7. Athens 

Ancient ruins in Athens Greece

The home of democracy, geometry, the Olympics, Astronomy, and so much more. Greece’s capital city has been around for thousands of years and has contributed so much to the modern world. You can walk the hallowed lanes of the Greek Agora where democracy was first whispered, climb the steps of the ancient Acropolis, or visit the stadium of the modern Olympics. 

In addition to the ancient and historical landmarks around the city, Athens is also known for its shopping and nightlife. The neighborhood of Plaka is full of Greek and international cafes and on almost every building around the Acropolis you can find a rooftop bar with amazing views of the city. 

8. Petra

Petra treasury in Jordan

Visit the wonders of man in this terraced city in Jordan. Situated between the Red and Dead Seas, the city was crafted by the Nabateans and became a major trade station on the Silk Road. Traders from the West and the East would travel and meet in this city and left their influence on the region. Petra is most famous for its architecture.

Carved and built into the rockside, the city is one of the most important architectural pieces from the Ancient World. The most visited areas of the site are the Treasury, the Siq, and the Royal Tombs. 

9. Istanbul

Sunset over Istanbul

The city that brought together the East and the West. Istanbul sits on the Bosphorus Strait that connects Asia and Europe in the Sea of Marmara that connects to the Mediterranean. The city has seen a long history of civilizations from Rome to the Byzantine Empire to the Ottoman Empire. Throughout the city you can find pieces for every part of its past. 

The city is also a religious center as well. Mosques, temples, and churches are scattered throughout the city. The most famous attraction in the city, the Hagia Sophia, reflects this storied past it was once a church and a mosque before its modern-day version of a museum. 

10. Kotor

Located at the end of the Bay of Kotor just off the Mediterranean, Kotor is one of the hidden gems of the Balkans. Once a major trade and center for the Venetian Empire, Kotor has grown to become one of the top destinations in the Mediterranean. 

You’ll love the old Venetian old town with its small shops and cafes, the adventurous hike up the Kotor Fortress Walls, and the 360 degree views of this fantastical southern “fjord” from both the bay below and the mountains above. 

23
Mediterranean Sea Tour Reviews - Summary
69% Recommend

3.7 out of 5
Excellent 12 Great 2 Average 3 Disappointing 3 Terrible 3
Value
3.8 Guide
3.7 Activities
4.0 Lodging
3.8 Transportation
3.8 Meals
3.8

DB

Recommends

Luggage Handling and follow up August 2019

5.0

Holland America Line Company Reviews

First cruise, ever! We did a land & sea journey to Alaska through Holland America Line. This is not a review of the trip (which was great!) so much as how HAL handled our complaints of damaged luggage. My sister's luggage arrived at our Yukon hotel with the latch broken, her clothes spilling out. She filed a report. We discovered damage to a corner of my husband's luggage at the departing airport. Too late to do a report...but HAL's property claims were wonderful, in particular, Mr. Scott Gerstl, who even called me to clarify details. He was empathetic and kind. We were reimbursed for both pieces of luggage. Read more

Operator Holland America Line

PH

Does Not Recommend

3 Star Cruiser Won't Travel On Holland American Anymore. July 2019

1.0

Holland America Line Company Reviews

3 Star cruiser will never travel Holland American again. They have really slipped. We were this time on the Maasdam and this ship should be retired as it's old and not kept up. Many cracked and broken windows. One boarded up with plywood. Teak decks needing repair and rust all over the ship. The sliding enclosure over the pool when it opened and closed sounded like the ship was going to come apart. They nickel and dime you now for everything. No connection with ships officers anymore as the Captain is just a bus driver. Rooms small, beds uncomfortable. They've cut back servers which was especially noticeable in the Lido where one person handled 3 stations at certain times meaning long waits. We so loved Holland America in the past but since Carnival bought them they have definitely slipped. Too bad! Read more

Operator Holland America Line

N

Does Not Recommend

GUEST SERVICES SUCK! May 2019

2.0

Holland America Line Company Reviews

Similar to one of the other reviewers here - I had an obstructed view outside room. The obstruction on the Oosterdam was a lifeboat. Every morning two men came and climbed all over the lifeboat working on it somehow. While I understand the safety of the passengers may depend on the lifeboats being in repair, but for a single woman to have two men climbing around her window caused me to close the drapes every day. I might as well have had an indoor room. Guest services said they would check into it and let me know. They did not. Second visit to Guest Services resulted in again - no action and no response. The third time, I raised my voice in the lobby and requested a manager. They all acted stupid - and perhaps they actually were, but only after all this did I finally demand another room and magically they found one and for the last four days of a 17 day cruise I was happy. I wrote Holland America when I returned and after a week I received a namby pamby response - with not so much as an offer of a discount on the next cruise or a free drink!!! I already have another cruise booked, this one with friends, which is the only reason I'm not cancelling it, but it will be my last with them! Read more

Operator Holland America Line

VB

Does Not Recommend

miserable Organisation January 2019

2.0

Holland America Line Company Reviews

Habe mit der Westerham eine Kreuzfahrt vom 20.12.2018 ab Hongkong bis 2.1.2019 an Singapur unternommen. Die Crew super. Das Essen super. Das Schiff sehr sauber.
Die Organisation der Reise miserabel. Bei der hier genannten Reise, die von einem anderen Unternehmen mit 10 Tagen angeboten wird (beim exakt gleichem Ablauf) hat holland america lines 3 Tage mehr benötigt . Dazu wurden mehrmals nachts Stops über mehrere Stunden auf dem Meer durchgeführt. Mit einer 3 Tage längeren Reise kann der Reisepreis erheblich höher ausgelegt werden. Nun müsste man denken, dass der Reisemittler dreamlines. de seine Kunden darüber vorher aufklärt. Mitnichten. Die Provision ist wichtiger. In Kambotscha wird jedem Fahrtteilnehmer eine Zwangsvisagebühr von 63 € berechnet ,obwohl man das Schiff nicht verlässt. Durch diese Methode werden die Fahrgäste ( indirekt animiert ) doch noch das teure Landprogramm zu buchen. Ich blieb an Bord und musste Zahlen. Ich kann mir nicht vorstellen, dass bei fachmännischer Vertragsgestaltung mit Kambotscha für Kunden die an Bord bleiben ,die Visagebühr anfallen muß. Schlechtes Management. Weiterhin ist es nicht möglich in seiner Kabine die Klimaanlage abzustellen. Für ein derartig großes Unternehmen sind diese aufgeführten Unzulänglichkeiten unakzeptabel. Für mich trotz der tollen Crew nie wieder eine Kreuzfahrt mit diesem Unternehmen
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Operator Holland America Line

JS

Recommends

One of the best cruise line ,looking… December 2018

5.0

Holland America Line Company Reviews

One of the best cruise line ,looking forward for the next one

Operator Holland America Line

WH

Does Not Recommend

When it sounds to good to be true, it bites you in the butt. December 2018

1.0

Holland America Line Company Reviews

After a very enjoyable cruise on HAL, I decided I would book another cruise with the cruise line - 3 weeks southern and western Caribbean. I travel solo, so am aware that I am paying an extra 100% for my cruise, and this includes the food for that imaginary second person. So I had checked out the prices for this 3 week cruise, and for the cruise it would be just around $3600 for an inside cabin (this includes the 100% markup). So I went to visit my travel agent, and she talked to Holland America and as I was sitting there, the HAL agent said to her that there was a "one day flash sale" on that particular day, and that a room with a window would cost $2245 for the 3 weeks, for me, a solo traveler. I questioned this at that very time, and the HAL agent verified this again, even stating that it would be my birthday on the last week of the cruise. He even arranged a transfer to the airport from the ship on the last day of the cruise (Feb. 3/19). My travel agent then also booked my flights (homebound flight on Feb 3/19), and the pre flight hotel. Imagine my surprise when I checked my Navigator account that same evening and found that HAL agent had booked my cruise from Jan. 13 to Jan. 27, for the price of $2245, and had booked the transfer to the airport on January 27. I was more than shocked, immediately emailed the travel agent about the error on the part of Holland America. Here I was in a quandry with non refundable flight back to my home airport on February 3, and my cruise booked until January 27. Of course HAL had already charged my cruise the same day, and there was no way out of this, except to book the final week at a cost of $1470. This was somewhat frustrating because now I was paying more than I had budgeted. Many people do save for their vacations and to be told that your planned vacation has now cost you almost $1500, than was quoted by the HAL agent was a little upsetting. HAL then "generously" waived the "fees" (what fees?) that were normally charged for something that was never explained to me. They also "generously" gave me a $200 shipboard credit. (Really....they just overcharged me on a quoted price, so they are still $1270 ahead). First I just wanted to forget about this and just take it, but within several days decided to email HAL and talk to them about every aspect of the booking of this trip. I explained to them that they had verified twice the cost of this cruise would be $2245, (plus port charges), and that the transfer back to the airport would be on February 3. I explained to them that their agent had made the error, as I was there every step of the way as this cruise was being booked. At first they would not answer the email....until I forwarded and forwarded it again and again, and finally got a message back that they were reviewing it. The final conclusion that Holland America made was this was all my fault because I was "using an outside travel agent" , and not booking directly with their company. My travel agent was talking to an HAL agent, but because it was not me....they have taken no responsibility for their mistake. After several emails which directly blamed me, and which of course was upsetting to me, I could no longer even deal with them. So now I am spending over $4000 for a cruise, which was quoted to me at the cost of $2245. I had no choice because if I had changed my flight, I would have forfeited the cost of the flight home on February 3, plus pay for another transfer to the airport. There is no recourse for me at all. I am trying to move forward as positively as possible, but I am not going to book any tours on this cruise with HAL, and will have my automatic gratuity removed. I am sorry that this will affect some of the employees who toil in the background, but this has been a difficult and expensive lesson for me. On the other hand, had I spoken to the HAL agent, they would also book me an overpriced hotel, and flights. I feel rather disillusioned by this experience...once again....I booked this in good faith, with the information I was given and due to an error or a lie, on the part of the HAL agent, I am the one who has to pay. No, $200 shipboard credit is not enough to make me feel better. So when it sounds too good to be true, remember my experience, that the small person will always get burned because the company does not care. Already paying double because I am traveling solo, and then scammed by this company.
Unfortunately this seems to be "my year" for issues with traveling and being overcharged. After booking all my own flights, vacations, Air B & B, hotel rooms, and at least one cruise, for at least 15 years, and never once having an issue, the 2 times an outside company was involved, it has cost me hundred of dollars more. Lesson has been learned....again.
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Operator Holland America Line

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