Experience the rich cultures of seven distinctly different European countries as you trace the coast from the Hanseatic town of Lübeck, Germany to the lively seaside city of Oporto, Portugal. Along the way, venture into medieval towns and fortresses, admire legendary art and architecture, hike on little-known islands, and savor delightful local specialties.
Glide along the canals of Lübeck, Brugge, and Amsterdam by Zodiac or barge.
Visit Mont-Saint-Michel, the D-Day beaches at Normandy, and the Guggenheim Museum.
Discover places accessible only by Zodiac, such as St.-Jean-de-Luz, Ile d'Aix in France, and Islas Cíes in Spain.
Explore the pilgrimage site of Santiago de Compostela and visit its spectacular cathedral.
Itinerary - 17 Days
Days 1 & 2 — U.S./Copenhagen, Denmark
Depart the U.S. on an overnight flight. Arrive in Copenhagen and embark our ship. (D)
Day 3 — Lübeck, Germany
A walking tour takes us through the ensemble of step-gabled merchants' houses, red-brick warehouses and narrow alleys of Lübeck, a UNESCO World Heritage site. Explore the waterways by Zodiac or visit Buddenbrookhaus, home to authors Heinrich and Thomas Mann. (B,L,D)
Day 4 — Kiel Canal
Spend a relaxing day at sea, browsing the library, taking advantage of the spa, or gazing at the scenery from the observation deck as we transit the Kiel Canal. (B,L,D)
Day 5 — Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Stroll along the legendary canals of Amsterdam, past cafés and narrow, gabled houses, taking in the cheerful and lively atmosphere of the town. Stop in at one of the city's fine museums, cruise the canals, or explore the city by bike. (B,L,D)
Day 6 — Oostende, Belgium/Brugge
From Oostende, drive to the medieval town of Brugge. Board small boats to view the eye-catching architecture from canal level. Later, indulge in regional specialties like Belgian waffles, chocolate, or beer. (B,L,D)
Day 7 — Bayeux, France
View the medieval Bayeux Tapestry, which illustrates the story of the invasion of England by Norman king William the Conqueror. (B,L,D)
Day 8 — Normandy D-Day Beaches/Cherbourg
Wander along Utah and Omaha Beaches, sites of the historic D-Day invasion. Pay homage to fallen troops at the American Cemetery. Continue to St. Mère Eglise. Reboard in Cherbourg. (B,L,D)
Day 9 — Saint-Malo and Mont-Saint-Michel
Moor beneath the gateway to medieval Saint-Malo and drive to the breathtaking fortified abbey of Mont-Saint-Michel, a pilgrimage site since the eighth century. Later, return to Saint-Malo and take in stunning views on a walk around the ramparts of this island fortress. (B,L,D)
Day 10 — At Sea
As the ship continues south toward Spain, enjoy a relaxing day on board. (B,L,D)
Day 11 — Ile d'Aix and La Rochelle
Tiny and tranquil Ile d'Aix is famous as Napoleon's last place of residence on French soil before his exile. Wander along the Vieux Port at La Rochelle, where lively cafés line the waterfront. (B,L,D)
Day 12 — La Côte Basque
Zodiacs take us ashore at charming St.-Jean-de-Luz to visit Eglise St.-Jean Baptiste, where Louis XIV married Maria Theresa of Spain. Stroll the harbor of this photogenic fishing village or the white-sand Grand Plage. (B,L,D)
Day 13 — Bilbao, Spain
Explore Frank Gehry's futuristic Guggenheim Museum, with its distinctive titanium wave. (B,L,D)
Day 14 — Santiago de Compostela
Visit the cathedral at Santiago de Compostela and witness the swinging of the extraordinary botafumerio, or incense burner. A musical performance is followed by a Galician lunch served in the elegant Hostal de los Reyes Católicos. (B,L,D)
Day 15 — Islas Cíes and Bayona
Stroll the paths of Islas Cíes National Park or meander along its lovely beach. Later, explore the picturesque port of Bayona. (B,L,D)
Day 16 — Oporto, Portugal
Famous for its port wine, Oporto is a World Heritage site with stately architecture marked by the 12th-century church of São Francisco and the grand cathedral perched above the city's seven bridges. In the afternoon, sip port in one of the famed riverside porthouses. (B,L,D)
Day 17 — Lisbon/U.S.
Following a panoramic tour of the city, we head to the airport for flights home. (B)