Athens to Athens - 7 Days
Discover the magic and mythology of the Greek Isles – one of the most storied regions of the world. Sail across the azure waters of the Aegean Sea visiting the small hidden ports of Nafplio, Monemvasia, and Patmos and the legendary islands of Santorini and Mykonos. Windstar brings you closer to unique island cultures, ancient treasures, and the breathtaking beaches of Greece. Your vacation includes visits to nine UNESCO World Heritage Sites and a complimentary local Private Event featuring dinner at the Celsus Library in the ancient city of Ephesus.
Complimentary Destination Discovery Event • Kusadasi: Evening in Ephesus
Barcelona to Athens - 10 Days
Set an unforgettable course from busy Barcelona to the silent ruins and relics high above Athens. Savor spicy tapas plates and fruity sangrias at a Palma de Mallorca beachside café. Delve into Bronze-age catacombs and learn Menorca’s strategic importance for Roman and Carthaginian trade. Visit a local winemaker’s Sardinian farmhouse and learn about Vermentino, Cagnulari, and Cannonau grapes as you sip and sample blends and vintages. Wander among imposing Greek statues and monuments in the Neapolis Archaeological Park outside of Catania, Sicily. Lean against the towering arches of Valletta’s Upper Barrakka Gardens as you take in breathtaking views of a fortified harbor unclaimed by centuries of kings and conquerors. This extraordinary passage along many Mediterranean island stops concludes in Athens, the cradle of democracy and Western Civilization. Take in the viewpoints from the Acropolis ruins over the city skyline or share your photos and memories in a quiet garden café among family, friends and grilled gyros paired with cool tzatziki.
Lisbon to Barcelona - 51 Days
Accomplishments of a lifetime deserve vacations of a lifetime, and this 51-day day cruise spanning the length of the Mediterranean is a perfect reward for milestones big and small. Depart from Lisbon and sail down the Atlantic side of the Iberian Peninsula where you’ll learn terroir secrets and the long history of sherry aging and sample dry, bready “fino” and dark, nutty “oloroso” sherries in the countryside outside Cadiz, Spain. Admire colorful mosaics and detailed stone latticework as you learn about kings and caliphs tied to the Moorish palace of the Alhambra above the port city of Almeria. Wander a medieval castle in Catania and learn how geology and nearby Mount Etna carried this coastal fortification nearly a mile inland. Listen to a private concert and attend an exclusive dinner among the towering pillars of the Celsus Library in the ruins of Ephesus, Turkey in our complimentary Destination Discovery Event. Wander the ancient baths, markets and forum at the excavated archaeological site of Pompeii. Stroll between century-old olive trees and vineyards surrounding an old French farmhouse outside Sanary-sur-Mer, then sample wines and olive oils in the intimate company of winery staff. Your epic odyssey ultimately concludes in the Catalonian capital of Barcelona, where you can board a cable car bound for Montjuïc Castle, or wind your way along Las Ramblas, an iconic, pedestrian mall lined with tapas bars, small shops and kiosk vendors. It’s an ideal way to find your own space to sip Catalonian Grenache red wine and reflect on your journey while tourists, shoppers and families flow by your table.
Complimentary Destination Discovery Event • Kusadasi: Evening in Ephesus
Athens to Athens - 10 Days
Enjoy a cruise worthy of Greek gods as you visit the land of myth and legend on your own white chariot. Feast your eyes on Santorini’s raven-black cliffs draped in Cyclades-blue and white homes. Inhale the scent of heather and pines on the sacred island of Patmos, where the book of Revelation was penned. Walk on cobblestones worn smooth by peasants and knights in the living medieval cities of Rhodes and Monemvasia. Stray off the beaten path to Ermoupoli where the strains of rebetiko (Greek blues) flow from open-air tavernas, and to Agios Nikolaus, to swim in the lagoon where the goddess Athena was said to bathe. Blur the lines between dreams and reality as you dine in the shadow of Ephesus’ Celsus Library at a complimentary Destination Discovery Event. Each day adds a new page as you write your own legend
Athens to Venice - 8 Days
The timeless grandeur of the Acropolis and the volcanic vistas from Santorini’s blue-domed villages are perfect preludes to this detailed 8-day exploration of Greece and the Adriatic. Wander the elegant gardens surrounding the white-pillared Achilleion Palace in Corfu, an expansive summer home built by the former empress of Austria prior to World War I. Admire Monopoli’s 4,500-year-old urns and ancient artifacts, then stroll along the formidable walls of Castle of Carlo V, a pentagon-shaped fortification built to counter an emerging age of cannons and sails. Wander the uncrowded streets of tiny Komiza, then board a small boat and experience the azure and emerald iridescent magic within the limestone walls of the Blue and Green Grottos. Sit, sip and listen as Zadar’s shoreline waves create a concert of random music along the waterfront. This memorable journey culminates among Venetian gondolas and glass-blowers, where you can stroll with the pigeons in the Piazza San Marco or browse one-of-a-kind artisan shops featuring intricate jewelry or ornamental handmade masks.
Athens to Venice - 18 Days
Embark on your personal Homeric odyssey as you sail from Athens, cradle of Western Civilization, and explore the islands and shorelines throughout Greece, Asia Minor, Croatia and Italy. Board a small Mykonos boat and explore the remote temples and amphitheater on uninhabited Delos, a sacred place where ancient Greeks honored the mythical birthplace of Apollo and Artemis. Discover authentic preparation techniques for fried Greek meatballs and tart, creamy tzatziki under the guidance of a Rhodes taverna chef. Walk in the steps of ancient kings as you inspect the living quarters, storerooms and archaeological exhibits throughout the Palace of Knossos near Agios Nikolaos. Catch a Zadar sailboat bound for a 5th century fishing port on the island of Ošljak and pristine archipelago stops in the Adriatic Sea. This delicious and delightful journey concludes among the canals and piazzas of Venice, where you can experience the classic and timeless romance of being serenaded by your gondolier along the Noale or Grand Canals that connect over 100 tiny islets throughout the Venetian city.
Lisbon to Athens - 18 Days
Rich with evocative history, unique culture and distinct cuisine, today’s Iberian Peninsula is the result of a complex confluence of civilizations. Contrast this extraordinary region with the rest of Southern Europe during this 18-day cruise spanning nearly the length of the Mediterranean Sea. Admire Moorish architectural influences in the walled port of Cadiz as you compare bready and clear regional ‘fino’ sherries with sweet, ‘cream’ sherries. Soar skyward in a gondola to the scenic vista atop Gibraltar summit. Gaze up at the towering walls of the Alcazaba of Almería, a formidable Moorish fortress overlooking the tiny Andalucian port. Peruse the works of Gaudí, Dalí, and Picasso throughout Barcelona’s museums, galleries and exhibitions. Pair authentic Italian cuisine with lip-puckering Limoncello adjacent to a bustling piazza or quiet, cobblestoned Amalfi side street. Witness the power of geologic instability as you travel inland to explore Catania’s Castello Ursino, a Medieval-era castle initially built on Sicily’s coastline 800 years ago. Float across the mirrored surface of an underground lake in the Caves of Diros far below Gythion, Greece. This exceptional journey concludes in Athens among the shadows of the towering Acropolis, where you can raise a glass of anise-scented ouzo among the company of family and friends.
Barcelona to Athens - 20 Days
Discover magic moments unique to extended port stays during this 20-day cruise tracing the sundrenched coastlines and reclusive ports throughout Spain, Italy, Malta, Greece and Turkey. Wander along the long the curved walls of circular Bellver Castle outside Palma de Mallorca, or dine on tapas made from toasted bread topped with salty hams, capers, anchovies and more. Board a private Amalfi boat bound for the Moorish port of Positano, a remote haven for artists, artisans and discerning shoppers seeking one-of-a-kind stylish apparel and accessories. Wind your way through narrow, alabaster passages intertwining the outskirts of Mykonos before stopping for refreshing Greek beers at a late-night waterfront café. Step among broken statues in the former ancient port of Ephesus and dine by moonlight by the towering columns of the Celsus Library. Delve into the legendary labyrinth of the mythological Minotaur below the Minoan Palace of Knossos. Follow the aroma of fresh breads and local wines throughout the flagstone arterials of the tiny medieval village of Monemvasia. This remarkable extended odyssey ends in Athens, where you can revisit the Parthenon at the top of the Acropolis or seek out savory gyros, dolmades and keftethes among the dozens of eateries and cafés throughout the thriving capital.