European Odyssey

Europe Adventure Cruise

  • National Geographic Explorer
  • Luxury Expedition Ship
  • 148 Capacity
  • 17 Days
  • View Departure>
  • Price from
  • $999,999,999

Summary : Designed to give experienced travelers a new insightful view of Europe, this European cruise through seven countries--Denmark, Germany, Netherlands, Belgium, France, Spain and Portugal--blends authentic experiences with dramatic coastal landscapes. Best accessed by sea rather than land, these coastal towns will be “portals” through which you’ll pass into history, art, architecture and cuisines accompanied by your Expedition Team. This departure is a Photo Expedition, see end of page for details.

Activities : Birding, Culture, Hiking, Kayaking, Photography

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Itinerary
Day 1
US / Copenhagen, Denmark

Depart US and fly overnight to Copenhagen, Denmark.

Day 2
Copenhagen

Arrive this afternoon in the royal city of Copenhagen and embark National Geographic Explorer.

Day 3
Lubeck, Germany

Lubeck was the medieval capital of the Hanseatic League. Its intact ensemble of step-gabled merchant’s houses, red-bricked warehouses and narrow alleys are protected as a World Heritage Site. Your Zodiac options and your walking tour take you to Buddenbrockhaus, home of Lubeck’s famous sons, authors Heinrich and Thomas Mann.

Day 4
Transit the Kiel Canal

You have a relaxing day as you make your way from the Baltic to the North Sea through the 63-mile-long Kiel Canal. Its banks are surrounded by pastoral lowlands. Opened in 1895, the Kiel Canal is one of the busiest canals in the world, with more than 50,000 ships transiting a year.

Day 5
Amsterdam, the Netherlands

With its canals, museums, cafes and gabled architecture, Amsterdam is a colorful city. Cruise along the canals, seeing Amsterdam’s landmarks and enjoying the free-spirited lifestyle. Choose from a variety of options to suit your interests in this diverse and fascinating city.

Day 6
Oostende, Belgium / Bruges

From Oostende, drive to Bruges, one of the purest medieval towns in Western Europe. Board riverboats to view the incomparable gabled architecture from canal-level and stop at a café for the equivalent of afternoon tea: Belgian waffles and coffee.

Day 7
Bayeux, France

Step back in time to the Norman invasion from France to England in 1066. At the medieval town of Bayeux, view the famed 11th-century masterpiece, The Bayeux Tapestry, which tells the story of the Invasion of England by William the Conqueror.

Day 8
Normandy D-Day Beaches / Cherbourg

Gain an understanding of the D-Day invasion at the historic Normandy beaches. The feeling generated here, where thousands of U.S. troops landed and fought, cannot be summed up in words. Begin at Arromanches, an integral part of the Allied Landing in June 1944. You'll see the remains of this artificial port, one of the most extraordinary maritime achievements of the whole war, which enabled allied forces to land in France. Then have a guided visit of the Landing Museum.

Continue to Colleville Sur Mer to pay homage at the American Cemetery where more than 9,000 white crosses and stars of David stand perfectly aligned in an impressive site overlooking Omaha Beach. Drive to Sainte-Mère-Eglise, best remembered for its church. A famous incident involved a U.S. paratrooper whose parachute caught on the spire of the town church; he escaped capture by feigning death until the town was taken the next day. Reboard in Cherbourg.

Day 9
St. Malo and Mont St. Michel

Moor beneath grand ramparts, the gateway to medieval St. Malo. Drive to the beautiful 12th-century Benedictine monastery of Mont St. Michel, which rises from the fast-running tidal flats of the Atlantic. Return to St. Malo for a walk around the ramparts and stunning views.

Day 10
At Sea

A leisurely day at sea allows you to absorb all that you have seen and heard so far, and to prepare for the exciting days that follow. Listen to talks from the staff, read in the library, be indulgent or rigorous (or both) in the Fitness Center and Spa, watch for marine life at the Bridge, or simply relax.

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. Today this natural gem is home to shellfish gatherers and artists that live by the tides. Wander along the Vieux Port at La Rochelle, where lively cafes line the waterfront.

Day 12
La Cote Basque, France

Zodiacs take you ashore at lovely St.-Jean-de-Luz. Visit the exquisite Eglise St.-Jean Baptiste, where Louis XIV married Maria Theresa of Spain. This photogenic fishing village is the perfect place to relax, stroll the harbor, or swim from the white-sand Grand Plage.

Day 13
Bilbao, Spain

Explore Frank Gehry’s futuristic Guggenheim Museum with its distinctive titanium wave.

Day 14
La Coruña / Santiago de Compostela

Visit the most magnificent pilgrimage site of the Middle Ages: the cathedral at Santiago de Compostela. Witness the swinging of the extraordinary incense burner or botafumerio. A dance reception is followed by a Galician lunch served in the impressive Hostal de los Reyes Catolicos, built for 16th-century pilgrims.

Day 15
Islas Cies and Bayona

Stroll the paths of Islas Cies National Park or swim and kayak from the white-sand beach. Explore picturesque Bayona, where Columbus’ ship, Pinta, brought news of the discovery of the New World.

Day 16
Oporto, Portugal

Famous for its port wine, Oporto is a World Heritage Site resounding in stately architecture: the 12th-century cathedral that glitters with gold, and the Stock Exchange, the embodiment of Moorish splendor. Picturesque wine boats ply the Douro River and you have a tasting at one of the famed riverside porthouses.

Day 17
Lisbon / Disembark / Home

Disembark in Lisbon. Following a panoramic view of the city, you head to the airport for flights home, or on to other adventures.

Notes

Special Guests:
Travel in 2012 with Lisa Abend, Time magazine’s correspondent in Spain.

Photo Expedition:
The photo team, a National Geographic Photographer and a Photo Specialist, will enhance your voyage by working with you on photo composition and exposure; helping you develop your own unique vision; showing you how professionals edit and store images while on the go; and sharing the stories behind some of their greatest images. Whether expert or interested beginner, you'll find added benefits such as walks ashore and Zodiac cruises dedicated to photography, presentations on the creative and technical aspects of photography, and one-on-one mentoring and coaching in the field.

Included:
All accommodations aboard ship; all meals and non-alcoholic beverages aboard ship; meals on land as indicated; shore excursions; sightseeing and entrance fees; special access permits; transfers to and from group flights; use of kayaks; tips, except to ship’s crew; taxes and service charges; services of a ship physician on most voyages; services of your expedition staff.

Not Included:
Air transportation; extensions; passport, visa, immigration fees; meals not indicated; baggage/accident/travel insurance; items of a personal nature, such as alcoholic beverages; email; laundry; gratuities to ship's crew at your discretion; fuel surcharge may apply.