Thoughts of Italy conjure up pictures of ancient Rome, the scents of fragrant Italian spices and wines, tossing coins in the Trevi Fountain, and navigating the romantic canals of Venice with the one you love. Italy provides so much for visitors to see and do and all that sightseeing can be accomplished in a variety of ways, including via a wonderful selection of Italian cruise vacations.
While many choose to see Italy by means of a land tour, those who enjoy cruising often prefer the option of exploring the country by day and returning to a comfortable cabin aboard their floating hotel each evening. Most popular cruise lines offer Mediterranean cruises that include stops at a variety of ports in Italy and surrounding countries.
Truly, Vacation in italy are a great way to see the country, from the sometimes rugged and always beautiful coastline to the interior cities brimming over with history and romance. While shore excursions may not include everything you’d see on a bus or self-guided auto tour, cruising allows you to hit the major highlights of this stunning country.
Ports of Call
When searching for an ocean cruise that includes stops in various Italian towns and cities, take some time to research specific ports of call to determine which you might enjoy seeing. Options include:
Don’t be fooled by the long, unfamiliar name. Civitavecchia is the name of the port that serves the capital city, Rome. Many cruises depart from Civitavecchia so you can spend time seeing Rome either before or after your trip. However, if Rome is one of your ports of call, you can travel via taxi or bus from the port to the city. One of Europe’s most stunning capitals, Rome is full of amazing historical sites just waiting to be explored — like The Forum, the Colisseum, the Vatican and its museums, and much more. Don’t forget to grab a gelato for a refreshing snack!
This ancient city, with its narrow streets and stunning palazzi, is a treasure. Easy to reach on foot from the cruise terminal, you’ll want to take the time to explore every nook and cranny.
Many Italy cruise vacations include a stop in this coastal town, which is close to both Florence and Pisa. The former, a city of great art and culture, is the gateway to Italy’s Tuscan region and a joy to explore. Be sure to stop at the Ufizzi Gallery, where you can view masterworks by some of Italy’s finest artists. Of course, in Pisa you can visit the famous Leaning Tower.
The City of Canals is situated at the head of the Adriatic Sea and has long been considered one of the world’s most romantic destinations. Take a gondola ride through the canals or explore picturesque St. Mark’s Square. If time permits, take a water taxi to the island of Murano, where glassblowing has been practiced for centuries.
Other ports of call in Italy include the islands of Elba, famous as the location where Napoleon was exiled; and Sardinia, owned at one time by Spain and boasting magnificent Catalan architecture as well as breathtaking archaeological sites that date back several millennia. Naples, on the picturesque Amalfi coast, is also a stop on a number of Italy cruise vacations. Pompeii, the world’s best-preserved ancient city, and the Isle of Capri with its famous Blue Grotto, can be reached from the Naples area.
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