Cruising the Cultural Highlights of Moorish from Malaga To Lisbon
- The waterfront at Malaga
- The fabulous Alhambra Palace at Granada
- The legendary bull ring at Rhonda
- The apes on the Rock of Gibraltar
- The Alcazar in old Seville
- A glass of Manzanilla in Jerez
- The Moorish castle in Silves
In a land both Moorish and moreish, this trip joins together some of the world’s totally ‘must see’ places. To see all this in one visit you’d normally be faced by a road-trip, living out of a suitcase in a succession of random hotels. Taking the cruising route is a much more cultured, civilized and relaxed way to see all the great culture and civilization on offer!
Basically we’ll take the effort out of seeing some of Europe’s most wonderful places. The two ‘megastars’ of this show are the Alhambra in Granada and the Alcazar in Seville – both legends of fabulous architecture. Having said that the stunning bull ring in Ronda, and the world’s sherry capital, Jerez de la Frontera, must run them close – to enjoy a glass of chilled sherry in a pavement café in Jerez makes one feel surprisingly good with the world. En route we throw in fascinating Gibraltar, and the best Moorish ruins Portugal has to offer.
Ports of call: Malaga – Motril for Granada – Porto Banus for Ronda – Gibraltar – Cadiz for Seville and Jerez de la Frontera – Portimao, Portugal - Lisbon
The minimum average temprature all year round is 22 degrees Celsius, and the maximum usually reaches about 32 degrees Celsius.
Embarkation 3 pm – Dinner on board. Overnight in port but make sure you stroll along the waterfront for a pre-dinner cocktail or post prandial digestif.
Motril for Granada
Early morning sailing to Motril for our optional full day excursion to Granada, the last Muslim bastion in Europe before it fell to the Christians in 1492, and one of the world’s most lovely cities. The Alhambra is an architectural jewel – a series of spectacular palaces and gardens built in the 14th century by the Nazari Muslim dynasty, it should be on every bucket list. Moving on we visit the Cathedral and the Royal Chapel where Isabel and Ferdinand lie buried. We also visit the Monastery of La Cartuja and many churches built by the Moors in the unique “mudéjar” style. Afternoon return to Motril for our overnight cruise to Porto Banus
Puerto Banus for Rhonda
Morning arrival in Puerto Banus for our optional full day excursion to Rhonda, which is 50kms inland from the coast through beautiful countryside and has an enduring place in Spanish culture as the home of the ‘Corrida’, or bullfighting. Actually, the old Plaza del Toros is now a museum portraying many famous ‘Suits of Lights’, and visitors can walk out into the arena. The nearby bridge, the Puente Novo may be named ‘new bridge’ but actually it was built in the 18th century – the views are to die for and make sure you get a drink in one of the cafes overlooking the gorge. The visit also includes a stroll from the leafy Plaza Duquesa de Parcent, which boasts a convent, two churches and the ‘toy town’ bell tower of the Iglesia Santa Maria de Mayor. If that’s not enough we also call in at Marbella, one of the most cosmopolitan European ports. Overnight in port
We set sail before anybody is awake and arrive in Gibraltar after breakfast. Our half-day optional excursion starts at the Cable Car Base Station and takes us to the summit of ‘the Rock’. Here, at the Top Station, your guide will point out the geography of this British colony before we descend to the Middle Station and the sanctuary of Gibraltar’s older inhabitants, the Barbary Apes, who roam free around this station. We then drive to Princess Caroline’s Battery and the entrance to the Great Siege Tunnels, a solid limestone carved system of tunnels. Finally it’s the Gibraltar Museum with its huge display of artefacts. Overnight at sea to Cadiz
Cadiz for Seville
Sticking out into the Atlantic, Cadiz is the port where Sir Francis Drake famously ‘singed the King of Spain’s Beard’ in 1587, so expect some history! Today we sail up the historic Guadalquivir river to Seville, by many accounts one of the most beautiful cities in Europe – and we’re not about to disagree. The streets smell of oranges, the air is filled with the sound of flamenco guitars (flamenco is more properly called ‘Sevilliana’ in these parts). All in all it’s a day that blends Moorish and Spanish art and culture with the chance to see the Cathedral, the Alcazar Palace and its lush Andalusian gardens, the Maria Luisa Park and the quaint district of Santa Cruz. Overnight in port in Seville.
Cadiz for Jerez de la Frontera
The morning offers an optional half-day tour to Jerez, famous for its wines and horse breeding. We also visit a ‘ganadería’, where bulls are bred for bull fighting. After lunch back on board, there is an optional guided tour of the history and culture of Cadiz followed by a trip to Sanlucar de Barrameda and a wine cellar renowned for its ‘Manzanilla’ – bone dry sherry with a salty flavour served chilled. Overnight at sea to Portimao.
Today’s optional half-day excursion into Portugal takes us to the old city of Silves which was largely destroyed in the 17th century earthquake. The sights include a centuries-old Moorish castle complex with underground water reservoir, a 13th century Cathedral on the site of a Mosque, the fine 15th century bridge over the Rio Arade, and the exhibits of the Museu Arqueológico. From Silves we travel into the Serra de Monchique to the picturesque city of Monchique which retains a 16th century charm in the cobbled streets with small doorways that house a multitude of artisan shops, all overlooked by a 17th Century Franciscan monastery and a 16th Century Parish Church decorated with ‘ajulejos’ – tin glazed blue ceramic tiles. We return to Portimao for a late lunch and free time with swimming option.Overnight in Port.
Portimao – Lisbon
Disembarkation at 9 am. Escorted bus transfer for those departing from Lisbon.
The Vessel: Mega Yacht Harmony V
The Harmony V is a modern elegant yacht with a sleek high-tech look very similar to the private yachts to be found in the famous ports of the world. The 56 meter long/8.4 meter wide Mega-Yacht was launched in June 2009 and complies with Eurosolas safety regulations while its powerful engines, generators and state of the art twin stabilizers will allow for safe and comfortable cruising.
A spacious lounge with classy seating and an American Bar leads into a dining area decorated with warm colors. Both areas offer large windows providing for the most beautiful views of all destinations the ship cruises to.
The 200 m2 sundeck offers a shaded outdoor area for all day dining and a bar as well as sun chairs and loungers. The swimming platform on Harmony V stern will allow for easy access to the ship and for a wide range of sea related activities.
On board Facilities
- One sitting for all meals
- Indoor & Outdoor Restaurant
- Indoor & Outdoor Lounge & Bar
- Audiovisual in Lounge
- Mini library
- Beach Towels
- Snorkeling equipment
- Board Games
- Swimming Platform
- Windows in all cabins
- Triple Occupancy cabins: Category A
- Flat-Screen TV
- Mini Safe
- Mini Fridge
- CD & DVD player
- En suite bathroom with shower
- Individually controlled A/C
- Telephone for internal use
- Central music
1 Double Bed
2 Lower Beds or 1 Double bed
2 Lower Beds or 1 Double Bed
The category A cabins are located on the main deck offering large windows, an en suite bathroom with shower and elegant Corian finishing on walls and floors. The cabins are equipped with flat screen TV sets, DVD players, mini fridges, hairdryers, individually controlled A/C and safe deposit boxes.
1 Double Bed or 2 Lower Beds
The Category P cabins are located on the Upper Deck offering a sofa, large windows, an en suite bathroom with shower and elegant Corian finishing on walls and floors. The cabins are equipped with flat screen TV sets, DVD players, mini fridges, hairdryers, individually controlled A/C and safe deposit boxes.
External Dining Area
- Accommodation in your chosen grade of cabins with private SH/WC & air conditioning.
- Mini fridge, and flat screen TV with complimentary movies
- Full-board meals including an American buffet breakfast, lunch and dinner
- Welcome Cocktail, a local themed party night, fun BBQ (weather permitting) and Captains dinner
- Regular (filter) coffee, tea and still mineral water, plus fresh fruit are available with our compliments all day
- Use of fishing and snorkelling equipment and sea kayak (subject to availability).
- English-Speaking Cruise Director
- Flights & transfers when cruise is booked as a flight inclusive package
- Beverages except regular (filter) coffee, tea and still mineral water
- Shore excursions or other land arrangements at ports of call
- Passengers’ personal expenses.
- Wi-Fi which is available at a charge
- Gratuities which are optional and should be made centrally at the hotel reception desk to be distributed throughout the crew – we recommend Eur10-14 per passenger per day
- Flights & transfers if cruise is booked for independent travel
Flights to Lisbon from London Heathrow, Gatwick and Stansted morning departures and from Lisbon morning deparures. Flight time 2 hours 30 minutes.
Flights to Malaga from London Gatwick, Stansted, Luton morning departures. From regional airports morning departures. Flight time 2 hours 50 minutes.
Road transfers from Lisbon airport to harbour approximately 2.5hrs.
Road transfers from Malaga airport to harbour approximately 30 minutes.