The wait is nearly over, and we can’t wait to get back to cruising this summer. Beginning in August, our return kicks off with some incredible itineraries that weave throughout the gorgeous Greek isles. Greece remains a top pick for travelers looking for a magical and memorable vacation thanks to the islands’ stunning landscapes, dramatic ruins and fresh-from-the-sea cuisine. If you miss cruising as much as we’ve missed our guests, join us for an amazing voyage to some of the most spectacular ports in the Mediterranean.
Our epic return begins with the seven-day “Idyllic Greek Isles” itinerary, departing Aug. 15 and 29. Read on to learn more about the ports that are featured along the route of this journey through paradise.
KÉKIRA (CORFU), GREECE
Corfu is the pearl of the Ionian Sea, attracting royalty from across Europe in the 19th century, and modern celebrities from all over the world ever since. The island reflects a triple heritage … as well as being undeniably Greek, the culture and food also show a clear nod towards nearby Italy, particularly Venice, whose fortresses dot the island. The British influence may be unexpected, but as they ruled the island for many years, they have left such surprises in the Mediterranean as cricket and ginger beer. The bustling atmosphere of Corfu Town remains elegant, infused with culture and history. Parts of the island also epitomize why the Greek isles are still regarded as the most beautiful in the world, with white-sand beaches backed by verdant mountains hiding traditional old villages. It is easy to see how Corfu has inspired generations of writers: from Shakespeare to Edward Lear to Gerald Durrell. It’s a true gem.
THÍRA (SANTORINI), GREECE
Santorini, the jewel in the crown of Greece’s Cyclades, is best known as the island with the giant volcanic caldera at its heart. All but the largest ships can anchor here in this stunningly scenic bay. Some of the most famous images of Santorini are the enormous cliffs dotted with dreamy whitewashed houses. Visitors who come for an afternoon or a day can immerse themselves in the art, food and legendary wines of this island that some believe may have been the site of the lost civilization of Atlantis. On Santorini you can do as Dionysus, the Greek god of wine, would do and sample the island’s wonderful wines or play Indiana Jones and explore the archaeological treasures of ancient Thera. Santorini’s pleasures will likely leave you with a taste for more and planning your return.
One of the most visited of Greece’s Cyclades Islands, Mykonos is also known by the lyrical name of “the island of winds.” The name comes from its first ruler, Mykons, son of the god Apollo. Today, you’ll see what look like the descendants of the gods lounging on Mykonos’s beaches — the island is known for being a lure for the rich and beautiful and was once a favorite vacation destination of Jackie Kennedy Onassis and her entourage. Although a mystique still lingers around the island, there’s lots to see, do, taste and buy in Mykonos that’s accessible to us mere mortals. There’s also the simple beauty of Greek windmills, whitewashed houses clinging to the hills and charming tavernas with terraces open to the sky and the sea air.
Cruising into the Bay of Kotor, you’ll be wowed by the dramatic beauty of this coastal Montenegrin town. Dreamy seafront villages are set to a backdrop of mountains plummeting into the Adriatic Sea, while the stone labyrinth of the Old Town is filled with medieval architecture and historic monuments — as well as the narrowest street in the world. The area only became part of Montenegro after WWII, and as such has a very different history to the rest of the country. Kotor escaped Ottoman rule and developed as an important Venetian trading post, before being conquered by the Austro-Hungarian Empire, France and Russia. The city pays tribute to this dynamic history with Venetian gates, Napoleon’s theater and Austrian prisons all waiting to be discovered. There’s a reason it was named a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Book with ‘Have It All’
Guests looking to take an inclusive vacation with extra amenities can book with Holland America Line’s “Have It All” premium package, which includes four high-value extras: one shore excursion, a Signature Beverage Package, specialty dining in the Pacific Northwest-inspired Pinnacle Grill or Pan-Asian Tamarind, and a Wi-Fi Surf Package to stay connected throughout the cruise. Guests who prefer to cruise without all of the extras have the option of a standard fare when making a booking.
If you’re ready to get back to cruising, we’re ready to welcome you on board this summer for a memorable “Idyllic Greek Isles” adventure!