Summer In The Baltic (Serenissima)

Summer In The Baltic (Serenissima)

From GBP £6,145

Description

If ever there was a sea perfect for exploring by ship, it is the Baltic. Join us on this summer voyage of discovery as we explore the many delights of the region. From the grandeur of St Petersburg and its surrounding estates to the newly independent Baltic states and their capitals with marvellously untouched Medieval quarters, or the sheer delight of Scandinavian ports with their colourful architecture, it is a truly fascinating region.

One of the many extraordinary experiences of the Baltic is the summer light that gives the sea and landscape a very special quality. After a long winter, the region responds to the sun unlike anywhere else and there is a calm and order even in the cities, which makes exploration so enjoyable especially when travelling aboard the MS Serenissima with less than 100 like-minded, fellow guests.

The history of the region is intriguing, with countries vying for commercial and political influence for over a thousand years. Each day will see us in a new port of call with a range of included, guided excursions and the complex past will be brought to life by our excellent local guides and onboard Guest Speaker, helping us to gain a greater understanding of both old and new Baltic nations.

Trip Name
Summer In The Baltic (Serenissima)
Days
16
Overview
Vessel Type: Small Ship Length: 87 metres Passenger Capacity: 95 Built / refurbished: 1960 / 2013 / 2018 MS Serenissima is a charming vessel and one of her best known and loved features of this vessel is its unique style. During a major refit the then owners commissioned Swedish interior designers to create a Gustavian style interior. This bright Swedish 18th century influenced, country house style works particularly well on a vessel of this vintage, providing intimacy and classic nautical sensibility often lacking in larger vessels. The vessel is equipped with a fleet of Zodiac landing craft allowing us to visit remote places where normal tender arrangements are not possible. The European Captain, Officers, Expedition Staff, and crew offer a first class service and have been selected for their professionalism and caring attitudes. The atmosphere on board is warm and welcoming and dedicated to discovery and relaxation. AIR-CONDITIONING The ship is air conditioned throughout. Please note that only the Serenissima Suites have individually controlled air-conditioning. DAILY PROGRAMME A Daily Programme, detailing the following day’s arrangements as well as any specific information about the day’s activities is produced onboard and delivered to your cabin each evening during the turn down service. DINING, DRINKING AND DIETARY REQUIREMENTS The Venice Restaurant onboard serves international cuisine and accommodates all guests at a single open seating. Tables seat 4 to 10 diners. In addition, there is an outside dining area for when the weather and itinerary permit. Breakfast and lunch are both buffet style, dinner is waiter service only. Complimentary (red and white) house wine, beer and soft drinks are included with lunch and dinner. Bar drinks and other beverages with meals are not included; these may be purchased onboard and paid for at the end of your cruise. Complimentary tea and coffee are available between 07:00 hours and 23:00 hours at the tea and coffee station located in the Andrea lounge. Please advise of any special dietary requests in advance. DISABLED FACILITIES The ship can accommodate passengers with mobility restrictions and wheelchair dependent passengers in cabin 407, which has a wider door and no step into/out of the bathroom and shower area. There is a lift serving decks 3 to 6, but there is no stair lift. DOCTOR A medical doctor is available on board 24 hours a day. A fee is charged for any consultations and medication prescribed. Please ensure you carry adequate supplies of any regular medications you may require.  ELECTRICITY The electrical outlets in the cabins and public areas are 220V and take a two-round-pin plug (as in continental Europe). There is a 110/220V, 60Hz outlet for electric shavers in the bathroom. We recommend that you bring an international adaptor. GRATUITIES Gratuities to crew and whilst on excursions are included in the cost of your holiday. INTERNET The onboard library has a computer equipped for email/internet access and Wi-Fi access is available in public areas, although you will require your own laptop, tablet or smartphone, and charges apply – 100mb for €15 Euros, or 500mb for €25 Euros. Please note that connection is dependent on weather conditions and location. LANGUAGE All members of the crew speak English. MONEY The following payment methods are accepted for settlement of shipboard accounts: Cash (Euros or British Pounds), Credit Card (MasterCard, Visa, American Express), Debit Card (MasterCard and Visa). Please note that personal cheques and Travellers’ Cheques are not accepted. PUBLIC AREAS • Andrea Lounge (on Deck 5). The bar is open from 11.00 until 24.00. • Harald Jarl Lounge (on Deck 5). There is a small library here with books and games. There is also a computer for public use (charges apply for internet access) • Lido area (on Deck 5) with a Jacuzzi and fitness room with two running machines • Observation Deck (access from Deck 5 lido area) • Deck 5 and Deck 6 outside seating areas SNORKELLING Snorkelling equipment is kept onboard. Please note that there is no snorkelling from Zodiacs. All snorkelling stops will operate from a beach.  TELEVISION The ship is equipped with a satellite TV system which receives 15 channels. TV reception depends on the satellite dish and on occasion it may not be possible to receive a signal. There is one central video channel on which it is possible to listen to the lectures delivered in the Andrea Lounge. There is also a channel for the ship’s camera located in front of the ship. ZODIACS Some destinations may require the use of Zodiacs to go ashore. These are usually on expedition cruises though may sometimes be used on destination cruises. 

Itinerary



Day 1 - Day 1 - Stockholm, Sweden
Arrive in Stockholm and make your way to the MS Serenissima. Enjoy welcome drinks and dinner on board as we moor overnight.
Day 2 - Day 2 - Stockholm
This morning we will enjoy a guided city tour which includes the Vasa Museum, built around the 17th century warship which sank in Stockholm’s inner harbour on her maiden voyage in 1628; its discovery in 1956 and subsequent salvage in 1961 is one of the most important events in marine archaeology. In addition to the well-preserved, elaborately decorated hull, thousands of items from the ship, including hundreds of sculptures, have been recovered. On our return to the MS Serenissima we will drive through old Stockholm and past the Parliament Building and Royal Palace which overlooks the inner harbour. Be on deck this afternoon as we sail through the many islands of the Swedish archipelago into Stockholm. This is a great sailing area and the islands are peppered with attractive summer homes.
Day 3 - Day 3 - Helsinki, Finland
Enjoy a morning at sea and this afternoon a guided city tour of Helsinki will take us to the colourful Market Square, the President’s Palace and the impressive architecture of Senate Square including the Lutheran Cathedral of Finland and Uspenski Cathedral. We continue to the Sibelius Monument and the impressive Temppeliaukio, the church in the rock, before returning to the vessel in the late afternoon and setting sail for St Petersburg.
Day 4 - Days 4 & 5 - St Petersburg, Russia
We have two days to explore this most endlessly captivating of Russian cities. Founded in 1703 by Peter the Great, St Petersburg is a fascinating mix of classic and Baroque architecture on a network of canals. We will be offering a number of tours during our time here including visits to the wonderful Peterhof Palace, Catherine Palace and the Peter and Paul Fortress. One of the many highlights will be an exclusive evening tour and concert at the Hermitage Museum.
Day 5 - Day 6 - Tallinn, Estonia
After a morning at sea we arrive in the historic maritime city of Tallinn with her awe-inspiring city walls and fortifications, narrow Medieval streets and the gateways which remain remarkably well preserved. In the Upper Town we will enjoy the views from Dome Hill with the extraordinary vista of domes, spires and gables and see Toompea Castle, once a fortress, and now the seat of the Estonian parliament. Walking to the Lower Old Town we will visit the main Square where we will find the oldest pharmacy in Europe, the Gothic Cathedral and the 15th century Town Hall.
Day 6 - Day 7 - Saaremaa
This morning we arrive at Estonia’s largest island which offers a glimpse of a bygone age. Untouched by industry, it is a green and very pleasant land dotted with attractive villages in a rolling forested landscape. During an afternoon drive we will visit the lovely capital Kuressaare with its magnificent Medieval castle and stroll through the streets of the enchanting old town. Continue inland on a journey that will take you back in time through a countryside of stone walls, thatched roofs, traditional villages and windmills. Return to the vessel and relax on board or out on deck as we spend the afternoon at sea.
Day 7 - Day 8 - Riga, Latvia
This morning we will explore Latvia’s capital by foot. Founded in the 13th century it became one of the most successful trading cities of the Baltic. Visit the Old Town with its Medieval streets lined with Hanseatic warehouses and punctuated with Gothic and Baroque churches including St Peter Cathedral, the largest Medieval church in the Baltic. Spend an afternoon exploring independently before we set sail for Klaipeda.
Day 8 - Day 9 - Klaipeda, Lithuania
Founded in 1252 by the Teutonic Knights of East Prussia, Klaipeda was annexed by Hitler in 1939 and almost destroyed towards the end of World War II. Arriving in the afternoon, we have a choice of touring options. You may wish to head into the countryside where we will experience village life and visit the Memorial Museum dedicated to Lithuanians sent to Siberia or who fought against the Soviets during the Cold War years. Alternatively, take the scenic drive to the Zemaitija National Park, home to Lake Plateliali and surrounded by dense forest. It was in these forests that, during the Cold War, the Soviets hid their first nuclear missile base directed at all the major European cities. Our tour will visit the Cold War Museum located in the former Soviet missile base. We will visit the bunkers, see the control centre and learn more about the weapons held at the site and their evolution.
Day 9 - Days 10 & 11 - Gdansk, Poland
We will spend two days in this charming city. This old Hanseatic port’s 1000 years of history have left a collection of buildings and monuments designed in Gothic, Renaissance and Baroque styles. Upon arrival we will leave the city and enjoy a full day tour to Malbork Castle and a journey on the Elblag Canal. The 13th century Malbork Castle belonged to the Teutonic Order and at the time was the largest castle in the world. Over the years it has been used as a royal residence as well as a fortress and was renovated after being damaged during World War II. The 80 kilometre Elblag Canal is a wonder of engineering designed in 1860 to connect East Prussia with the Baltic Sea. The challenges of the 100 metre difference in water levels between Bruzno Lake and Piniewo Lake was solved by a series of slipways, locks and dams with boats being carried across dry land on rail-mounted trolleys. We will take a boat trip along the canal before returning to the ship in Gdansk. The following morning, we will enjoy a city tour where we will walk along the cobbled streets of the Royal Way in the old quarter and view the elaborate architecture before ending at the 15th century merchant’s palace of Artus Court. Also see the pride of Gdansk, Gothic St. Mary’s, which is the world’s largest brick church, accommodating some 25,000 worshippers.
Day 10 - Day 12 - Christianso & Bornholm, Denmark
During breakfast we arrive at the tiny island of Christianso, the easternmost part of Denmark. Using Zodiacs to land, explore the area independently and perhaps visit the old fortress of King Christian V and learn about the island’s past including its history as an island prison. Today, it is a very special and peaceful place where eider ducks appear everywhere and on the bird sanctuary of Grasholmen, thousands of herring gulls, razorbill and guillemot breed. Over lunch we sail to neighbouring Bornholm. Peaceful and scenic, Bornholm Island is a mixture of wheat fields, forests and an attractive coast dotted with fishing villages. On an island drive we will see a 12th century round church and visit the town of Gudhjen where we can sample the smoked herring. Also see Hammerhaus Castle offering fantastic views of the island’s rugged coastline.'Please note that we will be at anchor today and will use Zodiacs to go ashore should weather conditions permit.
Day 11 - Day 13 - Elsinore & Copenhagen
The Danish King, Eric of Pomerania built a fortress in the early 15th century to enforce the collection of dues for all ships wishing to enter the Baltic. In the following century Frederick II rebuilt the castle into a magnificent Renaissance castle, Kronborg was considered at the time to be the strongest fortress in Europe. The castle is known to many as ‘Elsinore’ the setting for Shakespeare’s tragedy, Hamlet, Prince of Denmark. The play has been performed in the castle many times and included such prominent actors as Laurence Olivier and John Gielgud. We will enjoy a morning exploring the castle and the old town before returning to the ship for lunch. This afternoon we will enjoy a short city tour of Copenhagen including the Palace of Amalienborg with its four identical Rococo buildings which have been the Royal Residence since 1784, the Little Mermaid Fountain, Christiansborg Castle, the Royal Theatre and Nyhavn and ending at the Tivoli Gardens.
Day 12 - Day 14 - Skagen
On our morning excursion we begin with a visit to the biggest attractions of this region, Grenen. Denmark’s northernmost point hosts a unique natural phenomenon. Here two seas, the Kattegat and the Skagerak, meet. Grenen is a spit formation consisting of deposited sand and gravel carried along by the strong currents; and over the last 100 years, this barrier has increased in length by one kilometre. As the large beach expanse, Grenen is constantly moving, there are frequent occurrences of lagoons. From here we continue to the Sanded Church. The church, named after Saint Laurence, the seafarer’s and Skagen’s patron saint, was probably built in the 14th century and was at that time the largest church in the region. The sand drift began in the 16th century and reached the church at the end of the 18th century. In the end, the congregation had to dig their way into the church. The struggle against the sand continued until 1795 when the church was closed by royal decree. Today, only the tower of the ancient church is visible. We end our excursion with a drive to the old quarters of Skagen. After lunch on board, the remainder of the afternoon is free to explore independently. Discover the winding alleys in the atmospheric old quarters or the vibrant atmosphere at the marina. Alternatively, take the chance to see the artwork inspired by the region in the local museum or maybe enjoy a drink from the town’s micro-brewery.
Day 13 - Day 15 - At Sea
Relax on board as we sail towards Scotland. Maybe join a lecture in the lounge, read a book in the library or find a spot on deck.
Day 14 - Day 16 - Aberdeen, Scotland
Disembark after breakfast. Transfers will be provided to Aberdeen Airport and Aberdeen Railway Station at a fixed time.
Day 15 - Please Note:
itineraries are subject to change.

Trip Dates

StartEndPrice FromRoom Type
28-07-202012-08-2020GBP £6,145Standard Stateroom
28-07-202012-08-2020GBP £6,345Classic Stateroom
28-07-202012-08-2020GBP £6,895Superior Stateroom
28-07-202012-08-2020GBP £7,395Deluxe Stateroom
28-07-202012-08-2020GBP £7,395Standard Single
28-07-202012-08-2020GBP £7,895Junior Suite
28-07-202012-08-2020GBP £9,195Serenissima Suite
28-07-202012-08-2020GBP £9,195Owners Suite

Inclusions

    • Enjoy a guided city tour of Stockholm which includes the Vasa Museum, built around the 17th century warship
    • Join a guided city tour of Helsinki that will take us to the colourful Market Square, the President’s Palace and the impressive architecture of Senate Square including the Lutheran Cathedral of Finland and Uspenski Cathedral
    • Have two days to explore the most endlessly captivating of Russian cities
    • St Petersburg
    • Explore Latvia’s capital by foot
    • Spend two days in the charming city of Gdansk

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