There is nothing but beauty in the Mediterranean. The region, which includes the Mediterranean Sea, Greece, Malta, Cyprus, and parts of France, Italy, Portugal, and Spain is often considered one of the most beautiful places in the world. Its hot, dry summers, cool winters, and gorgeous hilly landscape make it a popular region for cruise ships as well. There’s so much to do in the area that it’s easy to see why. Use these tips to make the most of your cruise.
Consider Visiting in the “Off” Season
The Mediterranean has some of the most beautiful beaches in the world, so naturally, 2022 Mediterranean cruises are extremely popular. The most popular times for cruises in the area are June, July, and August, which means higher prices and more crowds to fight to see all the sights. If you still want to enjoy the warm weather but don’t want to spend as much, consider cruising in May or September instead.
Research Your Port Visits
Decide which port cities that you’re most interested in visiting during your cruise and create a loose itinerary to do so. Keep in mind that some of the port towns are an hour or more from the most popular sightseeing destinations. This means that you’ll need to plan ahead for public transportation, booking tours, and so on. Sometimes, cruise ships will offer shuttle transportation, so always look into that first. Remember to save time in your day for any delays or breaks that you need. After all, vacation is supposed to be relaxing.
Work on Blending In
Remember that you’re a guest in the countries that you visit. While most natives won’t expect a tourist to be fluent in their language, it is still a good idea to learn basic phrases in Italian, Greek, Spanish, and French. Even “hello” and “thank you” will go a long way when you’re asking for directions or trying to order off a menu. Keep in mind, too, that pickpockets are common in tourist destinations. Carry only what you need on you and always keep things in your front pockets.
Pack Your Suitcase Like a Pro
Chances are you won’t need 45 different outfits during your cruise, so be sure to consider what you’re bringing as you pack. It’s a good idea to use basic styles and colors that you can wear more than once during your vacation. Think T-shirts, jeans, day dresses, and shorts. Of course, you’ll also want to remember a couple of swimsuits and their cover-ups. Other things to consider include sunglasses, sun hats, sandals, comfortable walking shoes, and any medication that you’ll need while you’re away.
Think About the Ship You’ll Sail On
There are ships of all sizes that cruise through the Mediterranean, and each one has its own advantages and disadvantages. Think about what’s most important to you. If your goal is to focus on the local scene at each port, you probably want a smaller ship. It’s easier to get off and on the ship, which allows you to spend most of your day sightseeing. Smaller ships can also take you to smaller harbors and allow you to see things you may not have seen otherwise. On the other hand, if you’ll spend a lot of time at sea, you may want to cruise on a larger ship that has more shows, restaurants, and other onboard activities.
Don’t Eat All Your Meals on the Ship
It may be tempting to eat at the ship’s buffet each day, especially if it’s included in the price of your cruise. If you do that, though, you’ll be missing out on something that makes the Mediterranean so unique: the food. Whether you’re tasting tapas in Barcelona or having gelato in Italy, you’ll want to be sure your stomach has room to taste all the treats of the countries you’ll be visiting. You can even check out local markets for cheeses, baked goods, and other specialties.
Whether you’re cruising on a large ship or a small one, visiting in May or in August, you’re sure to have an excellent time on your Mediterranean cruise. In fact, there will be so much to do that you’ll probably want to come back for a second cruise!