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Lined with palm trees, this Adriatic seaside town is also a cultural mecca. Within the walls of the Diocletian Palace, you’ll discover historical buildings, numerous museums, the National Theatre and a collection of old churches. Culture, beauty, natural wonder – Split has it all.
Kotor offers some of the most well preserved architecture in all the Adriatic coast, with landmarks such as the Cathedral of Saint Tryphon. Built in 1166, there are frescoes dating back hundreds of years, and much of the gold and silver relief work done by the city’s master craftsmen of that time are held for safe keeping within its walls.
On a cruise to Taranto, a city that’s tucked neatly under Italy’s heel, you’ll be enchanted by the city’s old-world charm and traditions. Borgo Antico, the island meeting point between the open sea and the bay, is filled with narrow alleys and streets. Stroll down Vicolo dei Bacio, also known as “kiss alley,” as it’s impossible for two people to pass on this street without brushing against each other.
The sea provides a scenic backdrop while stopped here on a cruise to Italy from almost every venue in both the old city and the more modern area of Taranto. The Sailor Monument, which pays homage to Italy’s Navy, the bridges that connect the old and new city, and the fishing boats tied up on the northeast side of the island are ever-present and gentle reminders of the beautiful bay and the sea beyond.
Located on the southern coast of Italy, Naples has spectacular scenery that attracts artists from around the world. From this key spot, you can embark on a trip to the ruins of Pompeii or shop the many boutiques of Sorrento. You may work up an appetite for one of Naples’ greatest inventions – pizza – invented to honor the Queen of Italy in 1889.
Civitavecchia was settled in 108 A.D. by the Emperor Trajan and has since served faithfully as a gateway to the capital of the Empire—Rome. Once the center of the Ancient World from which emperors ruled over nearly all of western civilization, Rome is still a cultural mecca. Stroll the ancient halls of the Colosseum or gaze upon the ceilings of the Sistine Chapel.
La Spezia, Italy is a stunning town not far from some of Italy’s most famous cities like Pisa, Genoa and Florence. Historically, La Spezia was a prominent trade center during the Roman Empire. Today it remains not only one of Italy’s busiest port towns, but also home to the country’s largest naval base. As a stop on a Cinque Terre cruise, La Spezia is convenient, centrally located, and a little underrated.
The city is a major stop for a variety of Mediterranean cruises, and passengers often continue on to Ligurian cities like Cinque Terre, Pisa, or Genoa from La Spezia. Cinque Terre is merely a thirty minute westbound train from Stazione La Spezia Centrale, making it easy to explore the port of call and surrounding areas in a day or half-day excursion. Florence, too, is just two hours away—start your day on the coast of the Ligurian Sea and end the day looking up in awe at the Gothic-style Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore.
From the La Spezia cruise port, you’ll have a view of commercial and passenger ships coming and going from the port’s plentiful canals and inlets. Don’t miss views of the Apuan Alps and Cinque Terre to the west. On your Cinque Terre cruise, the opportunities are plentiful to explore inland cities and seaside towns alike.
The distinct Italian accent you’ll find here is a remnant of the 2nd century B.C. Romans. Finding the climate and inland of what is now known as Provence so inviting, they stayed and Toulon didn’t become part of France until the 15th century.
Formerly a sleepy Spanish city, Barcelona has recently been reborn as an eclectic fusion of the modern and medieval. Seek inspiration from the creations of its modernist architect, Antonio Gaudí, or the Picasso Museum. Or, take in the breathtaking cathedrals in the Gothic Quarter.
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