Having never been on a cruise before, it was wonderful to chat with podcast host and travel journalist Kylie Mitchell-Smith (aka “Travelling Senorita“) about her recent trip on the Azamara Mediterranean Cruise.
The Azamara 12-day “Islands of the Med” cruise covers destinations across the Mediterranean from Turkey to Spain making it an enticing choice for the novice (or dare I say it virgin cruiser) such as myself.
I met up with Kylie in Athens before she embarked on her Azamara adventure and she enthusiastically agreed to my request for an article which you can read below. If you’ve been pondering whether an Azamara Mediterranean cruise is for you (just like I have) keep reading for more insights.
Azamara Mediterranean Cruise – Islands of the Med Review
For the novice cruiser, we suggest the Azamara 12-day itinerary, it’s the ideal way to explore the magic of the Mediterranean, one island at a time. There are a few caveats to cruising, like smaller ships, destination immersion and local produce onboard.
The ‘Islands of the Med’ tour begins in Athens Greece, and takes in parts of Turkey, Italy, France and Spain. Azamara curates the experience to ensure guests can immerse in each destination, including an array of locally operated shore excursions.
We embark in Athens after exploring all the ancient city has on offer, and choose to stay in the quaint and local neighbourhood of Plaka – a short walk to the iconic sites. On board the Azamara Pursuit ship we set sail to Kusadasi, Turkey, home to the preserved and old ruins, of Ephesus.
Azamara itineraries include ‘Azamazing Evenings ‘an authentic experience to connect people to place. We are treated to a mesmerising performance ‘Unity in Diversity’ by the ‘Civilisations Choir of Antakya’-in the natural surrounds of the age-old amphitheatre.
Back on board there are nine restaurants and bars to choose from, a showcase of the Mediterranean, indulge in fresh seafood, cheeses and meats from across the region.
Dine at one of the speciality restaurants like Aqualina, for a taste of the Mediterranean or Prime C a steakhouse with a fine dining edge.
We set sail to Santorini and Crete in Greece, to explore the islands of the Cyclades, from climbing an active volcano to swimming in the natural hot springs.
Back onboard we spend a day at sea rejuvenating the soul, from a yoga class to a spa treatment and steam- the crew on board are happy to accommodate your needs.
At sea we indulge in a decadent brunch, served in the Discovery Restaurant on level five, it’s an interactive and colourful feast designed for the guests and crew to get to know each other.
Next stop on the ‘Islands of the Med’ journey takes in Sorrento, Sicily and Sardinia. We explore the picturesque, old city of Sorrento perched high above the port, where we take a day trip to the Amalfi Coast and the stunning island of Capri.
Azamara is all about the onshore experience, spending several hours in each destination- sailing in as the sun rises and sailing away as the sun sets.
Take a self-drive tour along the Emerald Coast in Sardinia and explore the port town of Olbia – local eateries are bursting with fresh seafood, olive oil and wine-and yes there are Sardines in Sardinia.
From the coast of Italy, the ship sets sail to the French Island of Corsica and the quaint coastal town of Porto-Vecchio. The old town is bustling with local artisans, restaurants and historical buildings- with captivating views across the sea.
The 12 Day ‘Islands of the Med’ journey finishes in Spain, taking in the islands of Mahon Menorca and Palma De Mallorca, along the way.
The islands are bursting with Spanish flavours, explore the majestic clifftops and beaches of Binibeca in Menorca, with an array of pretty, white stone villas.
Mallorca, is well known for the Catedral de Mallorca that towers over the old city, and picturesque harbour that is lined with local artisans and street food vendors.
Walk the cobbled stone streets, with an array of traditional tapas bars, that take in the coastal surrounds.
We sail into Barcelona as the sun rises to explore the Gothic Quarter, El Born district and Barceloneta Beach. As we wave goodbye to the cast and crew on board Azamara, we vow to cruise with them again.
Azamara offers smaller guest numbers, destination immersion experiences and local produce sourced directly from each port. Along with a fabulous ‘White Night’ fiesta complete with big band, pop-up food stations and cocktail bars.
The friendly staff ensure you have the ultimate onboard experience, with an array of bespoke shore excursions and curated itineraries that take in unique locations across the globe.
Visit www.azamara.com and book your next ‘Azamazing’ cruise.
Plan your European adventure
Inspired by Kylie’s Azmara Mediterranean Cruise review to explore more of Europe? Check out just some of our European focussed articles below
- Malta Travel Guide