Top Mediterranean Cruises

Top Mediterranean Cruises
Mediterranean cruises offer a chance to explore a host of different areas, from Portugal to Israel, without having to repack and check in and out of different hotels. Many lines, including Princess Cruises, Holland America Line and Royal Caribbean offer a choice of itineraries, generally departing Lisbon, Barcelona, Civitavecchia (the port of Rome), Piraeus (the port of Athens) and Venice. Most lines offer a variety of shore excursions for sports enthusiasts. As of October 2009, tours have included a guided bicycle tour through the streets of Barcelona, horseback riding in the Tuscany countryside and climbing the Leaning Tower in Pisa.

Holland America Cruises

Holland America Lines offers a wide range of Mediterranean cruises from April through September. Holland America ships hold from 793 to 2100 passengers, significantly fewer than the ships of most major cruise lines that sail the Mediterranean. Holland America is known for its well-trained Indonesian and Filipino staff, the onboard gallery of Dutch and Indonesian art and antiques and the optional private dining room on most ships that features the cuisine of the American Northwest.

Princess Cruises

Princess Cruises offer ultra-modern megaships in the Mediterranean with cruises ranging from 7 to 28 days and spanning from Barcelona to the Holy Land. The large liners, such as the Grand Princess, average around 2,000 passengers and feature many onboard amenities, such as poolside movies on a jumbo-tron screen, multiple restaurants, huge fitness facilities and spas, several pools including a "swim-against-the-current" pool and a nine-hole putting course.

Royal Caribbean International Cruises

Royal Caribbean cruises are a good choice for those looking for lots of onboard activities. These ships, which sail the Mediterranean from April through December and feature such onboard activities as a rock-climbing wall, full volleyball and basketball courts, golf simulators, ice-skating rinks, in-line skating and huge fitness centers and day spas. Itineraries cover such areas as the Greek Isles, the Holy Land and the Eastern and Western Mediterranean.

Article Written By Sandy Mitchell

Sandy Mitchell is an Ohio-based writer, blogger and editor. She writes for "The Better Drink" and other online publications. Before devoting herself full-time to writing, Mitchell was a travel agent and cruise school instructor for 18 years. She holds a Bachelor of Science in business administration from Bowling Green State University.

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