SILVERSEA CRUISES –
EDUCATIONAL MEDITERRANEAN MARVELS I

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112
Ship: Silver Spirit
Availability : MAR 31 - APR 7, 2022
Lisbon, Portugal
Barcelona, Spain

INCLUDED IN THE CRUISE FARE

  • Economy Class Air – Roundtrip
  • Transfers (between airport and ship)
  • 1 Shore Excursion per port, per day
  • Spacious suites – over 80% with private verandas
  • Butler service in every suite
  • Unlimited Free Wifi
  • Personalized service – nearly one crew member for every guest
  • Multiple restaurants, diverse cuisine, open-seating dining
  • Beverages in-suite and throughout the ship. 
  • 24-hour dining service
  • Onboard entertainment
  • Complimentary transportation into town in most ports
  • Onboard gratuities

 

 

Itinerary & Excursions Click here


  • 7 PORTS

  • 2 COUNTRIES

Nestled between Mediterranean Sea and the Atlantic Ocean, the Spanish Iberian Peninsula is perhaps one of the bet expressions of Spanish history and culture you’re ever likely to experience. Brimming with fiestas and siestas, this southern west corner of Europe is a burst of color and charisma. Join us as we weave our way north from the brightly tiled shores of Lisbon to the effervescent streets of Barcelona, taking in hotspots such as Cadiz, Malaga and Palma on your way.

Lisbon, Portugal – A glorious mosaic of beauty, freedom and authenticity, Portugal’s capital is a stirring artwork of a city. Known for the seven hills it spreads across, and its stirring fado music, Lisbon is a pastel-coloured blend of houses and beautiful tile artworks – and this creative city strikes a perfect harmony between natural and manmade beauty. Stroll along Alfama’s steep, cobbled streets as you explore one of the city’s oldest neighborhoods – where each house and door could be its own photograph. Look for the decorative tiles, with the distinctive blues and whites of Azulejo ceramics, and visit the dedicated museum to learn more. Afterwards, wind up to São Jorge Castle, where views out across Lisbon’s red rooftops unravel. Just one of many majestic viewpoints, you can also seek out Miradouro da Graça for perhaps Lisbon’s finest panorama, with the copper-coloured suspension bridge stretching over sparkling water beyond the sea of buildings. The elegant Tower of Belém rises in the Tagus estuary and is a historic defender of these shores. The grand, carved cloisters of Jerónimos Monastery spread out close by, and there’s another UNESCO recognized location close by at Sintra, where a colorful town is set amid thick gardens and towering mountains – capped by the royal Pena Palace. Later, relax and take a quick break to drink Ginjinha, a cherry liqueur made from chocolate cups instead of coffee. Lisboetas have a sweet tooth, and the famous Pastel de Nata’s crumbling pastry and caramelized-custard topping is the essential accompaniment to any coffee stop.

Cadiz, Spain – More than a hundred watchtowers gaze out across the waves surrounding this ancient Andalusian city. Sprinkled with evocative cobbled side streets, you’ll explore 3,000 years’ worth of history, while stumbling across palm-tree lined plazas of shaded coffee sippers. Cadiz claims the mantle of Western Europe’s oldest city, and every piece of architecture – and every wrong turn – offers a chance to discover fascinating new tales. Founded by the Phoenicians in 1100BC, Christopher Columbus used the city as a base for his exploratory, map-defining voyages of 1493 and 1502. The port grew in importance and wealth as Cadiz’s strategic location close to Africa’s northern tip helped it blossom into a centre for New World trade. Catedral de Cádiz, is a display of the city’s wealth and importance, looming spectacularly over the Atlantic’s waves, with cawing seagulls sweeping between its twin bell towers. Inside, treasures from the city’s trading exploits in the West Indies and beyond – which helped fuel the growth of this historically prosperous city – are on display. Enveloped by ocean on almost every side, Cadiz has something of an island feel, and you can cool off from southern Spain’s unrelenting sunshine on the sweeping golden sand beach of Playa Victoria. The two towers of the new El Puente de la Constitución de 1812 mark a contemporary landmark in this most ancient of cities, in the form of a spectacular new road bridge. Torre Tavira, meanwhile, is the most famous of Cadiz’s army of watchtowers, and the highest point in the city. Reach the top for a view of the ocean fringing the city’s expanse, and to learn about the towers – constructed so trading merchants could survey the harbour from their lavish homes. The Central Market is a chaotic place of bartering, where flashing knives dissect fresh fish. Stop in at the orbiting bars to enjoy tapas, freshly prepared with the market’s produce.

Malaga (Costa del Sol), Spain – Bathing in the sunshine coast’s stunning subtropical climate, and laying out endless spectacular beaches, it’s no surprise that Malaga is one of Spain’s most popular cities. The already impressive cultural appeal of this holiday city has skyrocketed over recent years, and with a storied old town and Moorish fortifications, Malaga has a lot to offer. Nearby, you can recline on the renowned beaches of the Costa del Sol, or venture inland to discover the Moorish treasures of Granada and Cordoba. La Malagueta beach is Malaga’s spacious urban beach, perfect for a sunbathe and a dip in the warm water, before enjoying seaside cocktails or seafood tapas in the restaurants nearby. Malaga and the Costa del Sol may be best known for glorious weather and beaches, but Malaga can now stake a genuine claim as an artistic powerhouse too. Visit the renowned Picasso museum – housed in the artist’s birthplace – before exploring the freshly opened outpost of the Pompidou Centre. The art also spills out onto the streets in the colourful Soho district – splashed with vibrant street paintings. Known as La Manquita – or the one-armed woman – the city’s cathedral rises over the historic old town. Its huge bell tower stands tall, but an accompanying second tower was never completed – hence the nickname. The Alcazaba fortress palace looms over the waterfront and forms a spectacularly preserved remnant from the era when the Moors controlled the Andalucía region. Discover more of the Arabic influence by visiting Granada’s Alhambra palace, or Cordoba’s La Mezquita mosque. Together with Seville’s converted cathedral, the cities form Andalucía’s Golden Triangle of Moorish wonders.

Cartagena, Spain – On the crossroads of mighty cultures, this Murcian port has endless ancient stories to share. A valuable natural harbour attracted many civilisations to this sun-bathed, southeasterly setting – following its foundation by the Carthaginians in 227 BC. Blending the imprints left by countless cultures on this global junction, the presence of everyone from the Vandals to the Phoenicians and Moors can be felt as you explore, walking between ruins and celebrated modernist architecture along Calle Mayor. Cartagena is crowned by the soaring Castillo de la Concepcion – rise to the stout castle aboard a panoramic lift. Inside, look through reams of archaeological treasures, or admire the rolling views down over the port and across the waters. Watch out for the electric blue peacocks who strut flamboyantly. Cartagena’s emergence as a visitor destination coincided with a stunning discovery in 1988 – the bowl of a gloriously preserved Roman Theatre. Enter to sit among the grandiose ancient venue, so evocative, you can’t help but imagine the historic performances that have graced its stage. Wander the breezy waterfront, looking across the narrow strait towards Africa’s distant haze, and spotting gleaming warships. Cartagena’s perfect harbour means it has been one of Spain’s oldest strategic navy positions since the 16th century. Settle to enjoy the joys of tapas in lively bars – sampling crisped paella, squid and honeyed-aubergine. Easter’s Semana Santa festivities are typically lively here, as hooded processions, lavish floats and sombre fiery displays roll through the streets.

Valencia, Spain – Valencia is a proud city. During the Civil War, it was the last seat of the Republican Loyalist government (1935–36), holding out against Franco’s National forces until the country fell to 40 years of dictatorship. Today it represents the essence of contemporary Spain—daring design and architecture along with experimental cuisine—but remains deeply conservative and proud of its traditions. Though it faces the Mediterranean, Valencia’s history and geography have been defined most significantly by the River Turia and the fertile floodplain (huerta) that surrounds it. The city has been fiercely contested ever since it was founded by the Greeks. El Cid captured Valencia from the Moors in 1094 and won his strangest victory here in 1099: he died in the battle, but his corpse was strapped into his saddle and so frightened the besieging Moors that it caused their complete defeat. In 1102 his widow, Jimena, was forced to return the city to Moorish rule; Jaume I finally drove them out in 1238. Modern Valencia was best known for its frequent disastrous floods until the River Turia was diverted to the south in the late 1950s. Since then the city has been on a steady course of urban beautification. The lovely bridges that once spanned the Turia look equally graceful spanning a wandering municipal park, and the spectacularly futuristic Ciutat de les Arts i les Ciències (City of Arts and Sciences), most of it designed by Valencia-born architect Santiago Calatrava, has at last created an exciting architectural link between this river town and the Mediterranean. If you’re in Valencia, an excursion to Albufera Nature Park is a worthwhile day trip.

Palma de Mallorca, Spain – A rugged Mediterranean gem, arising out of the rich blue haze, Mallorca is a Spanish island of cuisine, culture, and sun-gorged beaches. Palma de Mallorca is the island’s dominating capital, and a sand-coloured mirage of glorious buildings and living history. Conquered and liberated countless times over the years, since its Bronze Age founding, the city is your gateway to ceaseless Mediterranean beauty, buzzy markets, and intense flavours. Cafes and bars wait close to the sweeping coastline, where you can enjoy strong espressos to kick start the day, or splashes of red Majorcan wines to round it off. Bicycles trundle up and down the promenade, which invites you to wander in the morning sunshine beside the waves. Dominated by the indefatigable form of Santa María cathedral, which looms over the city and coastline, Palma de Mallorca is drenched in history and culture. The labyrinth of the old town is a cobbled haven, which bustles with dripping ice creams and sun-lashed squares. Settle to try the island’s superb cuisine, and savour local ingredients with an exceptional depth of flavour. Something about the sunshine here makes tomatoes extra sharp and delicious, while the seafood is consistently juicy and plump. The creation of the mighty cathedral, Le Seu, began in 1229 and was eventually concluded in 1601. A perfect encapsulation of Palma de Mallorca’s blend of the historic and the contemporary, even Gaudi lent his hand to it, and the interior features a spectacular modernist take on the New Testament from artist Miquel Barcelo, which is painted across the chapel’s walls. The splendid Royal Palace of La Almudaina fortress stands nearby, a left-behind Moorish footprint of square towers and Arabic archways that now serves as an official summer residence for the King of Spain.

 

Barcelona, Spain – The infinite variety of street life, the nooks and crannies of the medieval Barri Gòtic, the ceramic tile and stained glass of Art Nouveau facades, the art and music, the throb of street life, the food (ah, the food!)—one way or another, Barcelona will find a way to get your full attention. The capital of Catalonia is a banquet for the senses, with its beguiling mix of ancient and modern architecture, tempting cafés and markets, and sun-drenched Mediterranean beaches. A stroll along La Rambla and through waterfront Barceloneta, as well as a tour of Gaudí’s majestic Sagrada Famíliaand his other unique creations, are part of a visit to Spain’s second-largest city. Modern art museums and chic shops call for attention, too. Barcelona’s vibe stays lively well into the night, when you can linger over regional wine and cuisine at buzzing tapas bars.