UNDER THE TUSCAN SUN & DOWN THE DALMATIAN COAST CRUISE TOUR

From $ 7,099 pp
Itinerary & Ports

Under the Tuscan Sun & Down the Dalmatian Coast Cruise Tour

select departure date:
From $ 7,099* pp

date
port
arrive
depart
Sep 21 Tue
6:00 PM
 
Sep 22 Wed
8:00 AM
4:00 PM
 
Sep 23 Thu
8:00 AM
5:00 PM
 
Sep 24 Fri
8:00 AM
10:00 PM
 
Sep 25 Sat
8:00 AM
5:00 PM
 
Sep 26 Sun
At Sea
Sep 27 Mon
8:00 AM
4:00 PM
Sep 28 Tue
8:00 AM
3:00 PM
Sep 29 Wed
7:00 AM
 
Sep 30 Thu
 
Oct 1 Fri
 
Oct 2 Sat
 
TUE SEP 21
TO 6:00 PM Venice

day 1 Venice, Italy


Venice, Italy
The magical canal city of Venice is one of the most romantic places on earth. Exploring the winding streets and alleys, crossing bridges and ducking around corners to find hidden squares, palaces and churches, you may imagine you are in another world – the city looks much the same as it did some 600 years ago. Popular tourist sights attract crowds, such as St. Mark’s Square and the 5-domed Basilica di San Marco, with its gilded interior and jewel-encrusted altarpiece, and the 14th century Doge’s Palace. It’s also easy to escape the crowds.
 
Vaporettos (water buses) are the way locals get around and a fun way to navigate the Grand Canal waterway, really the city’s main “street.” There are discoveries at each stop. Art lovers will want to check out the Peggy Guggenheim Collection, where you’ll find works by Picasso, Kandinsky, Klee, Mondrian, and Dalí. The Galleria dell'Accademia is the place to admire Venetian art from the 13th to 18th centuries. A fascinating visit is the historic Jewish Ghetto, where Jews were restricted to live in the 16th century and where synagogues (some still active) are hidden on the upper floors of apartment buildings.
 
WED SEP 22
8:00 AM TO 4:00 PM Rovinj

day 2 Rovinj, Croatia


Rovinj, Croatia
This small fishing port is a hidden gem, the kind of delightful place you can only visit on a small ship. The town is on the scenic Istrian Peninsula and bordered on three sides by the Adriatic Sea. Wander the maze of medieval cobblestone streets up to the hilltop St. Euphemia Cathedral, which dominates the skyline, or explore the Bronze Age ruins of the fort of Monkodonja. Or spend time on the breathtaking beaches along the 6-mile Lim Fjord.
 
Outside of town, an old narrow-gauge rail line, Parenzana, once connected Istria with the Italian city of Trieste, and makes for a wonderful biking experience as you peddle between medieval villages through a lush river valley. Another exciting excursion explores by inflatable Zodiac the coastline, protected forested areas, and oyster farms of the Rovinj Archipelago and Lim Fjord. Or delve into the world of Croatian wines on a winery visit.
 
THU SEP 23
8:00 AM TO 5:00 PM Split

day 3 Split, Croatia


Split, Croatia
In Croatia’s second largest city, the scenery is a calling card, the rugged Dalmatian mountains a backdrop for pebbled beaches and the Adriatic Sea. Wander the wide palm tree-lined promenade for views, stopping for coffee at one of the outdoor cafes. You’ll also want to step way back in time in the Old Town, a medieval city built within a palace created for Roman Emperor Diocletian in the 4th century. A tall room at the palace was seen on the TV show “Game of Thrones” as the holding place for Daenerys’ dragons. Actors and actresses reenact the arrival of the emperor daily on Old Town’s marble streets.
 
Cultural tours delve into both the past and modern history of Split, which was part of Yugoslavia until the Croatian War of Independence and was heavily bombed in the 1990s. Outside the city are gorgeous nature areas. Rafting the Class I and II rapids of the Cetina River, through a canyon with 590-foot cliffs, brings views such as the 131-foot high Gubavica Waterfall.
FRI SEP 24
8:00 AM TO 10:00 PM Dubrovnik

day 4 Dubrovnik, Croatia


Dubrovnik, Croatia
Thanks to the fact you are on a small Windstar yacht, you’ll have the extraordinary experience of looking up at the magnificent medieval walls and red rooftops of the Old Town of Dubrovnik as your ship anchors nearby (larger ships can’t get near). As you head ashore you’ll quickly realize why, on a Dalmatian Coast cruise, Dubrovnik is the crown jewel. In the Old Town, where no cars are allowed, walking along the fortifications and wandering the marble streets you may imagine you’re back in the 14th century. You can visit a pharmacy founded in 1317.
 
With its historic atmosphere, it’s not surprising that Old Town starred in the TV show “Game of Thrones.” Show-focused tours point out the sights. Adventure tours explore the Adriatic Sea with such activities as swimming and snorkeling in Croatia’s Blue Grotto, the Modra Spilja Cave, in water that is startlingly blue. There is also opportunity to kayak past the walls of Old Town and to spend time on secluded beaches. Or travel into the countryside to explore Croatian farm life.
SAT SEP 25
8:00 AM TO 5:00 PM Kotor

day 5 Kotor, Montenegro


Kotor, Montenegro
You’ll want to be on deck and have your camera ready when your Windstar yacht sails into the magnificent Bay of Kotor. What looks like a fjord surrounded by tall cliffs is actually a submerged ancient river valley. In addition to breathtaking natural scenery, your ship will pass a small Catholic church with origins in the 15th century, and a tiny island that’s home to a 12th century Benedictine monastery, with views too of the red rooftops of the Old Town as you approach Kotor.
 
Wander through the dreamy medieval Old Town on pedestrians-only alleyways past historic homes, hidden squares and stone churches (and boutiques and restaurants). Climb to the fortress on the hill for stunning views. The name Montenegro refers to the dark mountain forests that cover much of the landscape. Side trips visit villages in the countryside. A late-night stay affords opportunity to admire the sunset from a restaurant terrace – sipping the Montenegrin red wine Vranac while sampling smoked ham and other local specialties.
MON SEP 27
8:00 AM TO 4:00 PM Giardini Naxos

day 7 Giardini Naxos, Italy


Giardini Naxos, Italy
Thanks to the fact you are on a small ship, your cruise around Italy can call at this Sicilian resort town, just below the popular cliffside town of Taormina (large ships have to bus visitors in from many miles away). The charming village of Giardini Naxos is located on one of the world’s most beautiful bays and has a delightful beach scene including ocean-view restaurants and cafes where you might indulge in pizza, the perfect bowl of pasta, or fresh seafood.
 
Those who venture up to Taormina will be treated to stunning views of the Ionian Sea and the Greco-Roman Theater, which dates back to the 2nd and 3rd centuries. Much of the town is pedestrians-only and the narrow cobblestone streets are full of tempting shops, wine bars, and cafes. For those who want to see more of Sicily, tours provide closeup views of snow-capped Mount Etna. Fans of “The Godfather” will want to follow in the footsteps of the Corleones,  visiting towns seen in the movies.
TUE SEP 28
8:00 AM TO 3:00 PM Sorrento

day 8 Sorrento, Italy


Sorrento, Italy
On your Italy cruise you’ll visit the small and pretty city of Sorrento. It’s a delightful place to linger, catching views of the Bay of Naples; exploring the city’s squares; and sitting at a sidewalk café, sampling the local cuisine while watching the world go by. Don’t forget to taste the locally produced limoncello (lemon liquor) – a gourmet tour provides further insight into limoncello and olive oil production.
 
From Sorrento, you may also explore more of the gorgeous Amalfi Coast including Positano; the famous fishing village rises from the blue sea uphill in steep steps, with its square, white Moorish-style houses creating a dream-like scene. Or dive into ancient history at the remarkable ruins of the Roman city of Pompeii, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. In the year 79, the city of 20,000 was buried by ash. Much appears as it was, frozen in time.
WED SEP 29
7:00 AM TO Rome

day 9 Rome, Italy


Rome, Italy
The “Eternal City” lives up to its name. Italy’s capital is a bustling modern metropolis with a history that spans some 2,500 years. Exploring here is like visiting a vast open-air museum. A peek around nearly every corner in the city reveals a church – about 900 in total – or one of the hundreds of gorgeous fountains. The city’s historic center is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. 
 
The must-sees for many first-time visitors include the Roman Colosseum, where gladiators once competed in front of 50,000 spectators, Vatican City and the Sistine Chapel’s ceiling filled with Michelangelo’s frescoes. Beyond these landmark attractions, on your cruise from Rome or to the city, just wander the streets and you will discover ancient ruins and imposing monuments, palaces, basilicas, views of the Tiber River and other sights where you may find your jaw suddenly drops. On your small ship Rome cruise you’ll discover that this city is a living museum with surprises everywhere. 
 
Don’t forget to include the modern delights of Rome, such as restaurants that serve the perfect bowl of Cacio e Pepe pasta, gelato shops, and the parade of beautiful people. Among the excellent shopping opportunities are designer stores on Via Condotti, near the impressive 18th century Spanish Steps (which actually were funded by the French Bourbons). On your Rome cruise exploration, don’t forget to toss a coin in the Trevi Fountain. The coin is said to assure your return.
 
WED SEP 29
12:00 PM TO 12:00 PM Florence

day 9 Disembark and Head to the Chianti Region


Banfi Castle
Disembark the ship and board your coach for your 2-hour trip to Tuscany. Arrive in Pienza, a beautiful hilltop village and spend the late morning taking a walking tour of the city followed by free time for lunch. Depart Pienza and head to the Banfi Castle for winetasting and free time to visit this beautiful place overlooking the Chianti region.  You then are on your way to the luxurious Castello del Nero which was a home of a historic noble family, a 5-star mansion of refined elegance, for check in and some free time to enjoy the property followed by a sunset apertif on the panoramic Ferrari Terrace.
 
(Includes overnight at Castello del Nero)
THU SEP 30
12:00 PM TO 12:00 PM Florence

day 10 In the Heart of Tuscany


San Gimignano
Relax in the beautiful Tuscan atmosphere at the hotel with a late breakfast then it’s off to San Gimignano for a self-guided tour and free time to explore.   After enjoying this hilltop village set off for a true Chianti farmhouse, Fattoria Poggio Alloro, and meet this friendly Italian family of cooks and wine makers.  Enjoy a beautiful typical lunch of the Tuscan region. After lunch depart for Florence.  Take a guided tour of Florence including  a visit to the Academy with its stunning David. There will be free time for exploring Florence on your own and dinner.  Drive to the Castello del Nero.
 
(Includes overnight at Castello del Nero, breakfast and lunch.)
FRI OCT 1
12:00 PM TO 12:00 PM Rome

day 11 To Rome


Piazza de Popolo, Rome
Enjoy breakfast at your hotel and depart to Siene where you will have 3 hours of free time to tour the best preserved Medieval town in Italy. Continue your journey to Rome. Check in to the 5-star luxury Grand Hotel de la Minerve before an afternoon and evening to explore on your own.
 
(Includes breakfast and overnight at Grand Hotel de la Minerve.)
SAT OCT 2
12:00 PM TO 12:00 PM Rome

day 12 Check out and Transfer


Hotel de Minerve
Breakfast is included and will be served at the hotel. Check out and transfer to the airport according to your flight schedule.
 
(Includes breakfast and airport transfer)

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