Circumnavigation of the Black Sea (Serenissima)


from$ 10549 AUD



Note: Current p/p indicative rate. Final price may change due to currency fluctuations.

Ship
Serenissima
City
Istanbul to Istanbul


Overview

Join us aboard the MS Serenissima as we explore the shores of the Black Sea, one of the most fascinating and historically rich regions in the world. Our voyage begins in Istanbul and from the Golden Horn follows the Turkish coast to Trabzon (Trebizond) before crossing to Georgia where the richness of its culture reflects the influence of Greeks, Byzantines, Persians, Turks and Mongols. Georgia’s ‘Golden Age’ reached its height between the reigns of David the Builder and his granddaughter, Queen Tamara, in the 11th and 12th centuries. From Georgia we follow the coastline to Russia’s premier resort and spa, Sochi. Here the microclimate produces wonderful year round weather and a lush countryside. After a day at sea which will be filled with interesting lectures by our onboard Guest Speaker, we reach Odessa, the historic city founded by Catherine the Great at the mouth of the great River Dnieper where we have the benefit of an overnight stay. We continue to Constanta an ancient metropolis and Romania’s largest seaport. Finally, we reach Nessebar, a delightful Bulgarian town with a fascinating history before our cruise ends where it all began, in the captivating city of Istanbul. Such a journey as this would be totally impractical by any means other than a cruise. Whether your interest lies in ancient or military history, architecture, literature, contemporary politics or just in visiting some of the most atmospheric and fascinating places on earth, the Black Sea has a lot to offer. Local guides and our onboard Guest Speaker will contribute greatly to our enjoyment and understanding of this intriguing corner of the world where East meets West.

Overview

  • BKANC
  • 13 Days
  • Serenissima

Cruise Itinerary

  • Istanbul (Turkey)
  • Istanbul (Turkey)

Departures


$ 10549 AUD

10 to 11.5 sq meters. The cabins are attractively designed for comfort and convenience. All cabins are fully air conditioned with an en-suite bathroom with shower (please note cabins 601 - 605 and 507 have a bath with shower attachment) and a selection of toiletries in addition to a hairdryer, robes and slippers. All cabins come equipped with telephone, flat screen television, safety deposit box and other thoughtful appointments. Bottles of still and sparkling water are replenished daily. Due to the very nature of the ship, the cabins vary in shape and size, adding to the vessel’s overall charm.


$ 11105 AUD

14 to 19 sq meters. The cabins are attractively designed for comfort and convenience. All cabins are fully air conditioned with an en-suite bathroom with shower (please note cabins 601 - 605 and 507 have a bath with shower attachment) and a selection of toiletries in addition to a hairdryer, robes and slippers. All cabins come equipped with telephone, flat screen television, safety deposit box and other thoughtful appointments. Bottles of still and sparkling water are replenished daily. Due to the very nature of the ship, the cabins vary in shape and size, adding to the vessel’s overall charm.


$ 11475 AUD

7 to 12.5 sq meters. The cabins are attractively designed for comfort and convenience. All cabins are fully air conditioned with an en-suite bathroom with shower (please note cabins 601 - 605 and 507 have a bath with shower attachment) and a selection of toiletries in addition to a hairdryer, robes and slippers. All cabins come equipped with telephone, flat screen television, safety deposit box and other thoughtful appointments. Bottles of still and sparkling water are replenished daily. Due to the very nature of the ship, the cabins vary in shape and size, adding to the vessel’s overall charm.


$ 11846 AUD

11.5 to 18 sq meters. The cabins are attractively designed for comfort and convenience. All cabins are fully air conditioned with an en-suite bathroom with shower (please note cabins 601 - 605 and 507 have a bath with shower attachment) and a selection of toiletries in addition to a hairdryer, robes and slippers. All cabins come equipped with telephone, flat screen television, safety deposit box and other thoughtful appointments. Bottles of still and sparkling water are replenished daily. Due to the very nature of the ship, the cabins vary in shape and size, adding to the vessel’s overall charm.


$ 12772 AUD

11 to 25 sq meters. The cabins are attractively designed for comfort and convenience. All cabins are fully air conditioned with an en-suite bathroom with shower (please note cabins 601 - 605 and 507 have a bath with shower attachment) and a selection of toiletries in addition to a hairdryer, robes and slippers. All cabins come equipped with telephone, flat screen television, safety deposit box and other thoughtful appointments. Bottles of still and sparkling water are replenished daily. Due to the very nature of the ship, the cabins vary in shape and size, adding to the vessel’s overall charm.


$ 13698 AUD

21 sq meters. The cabins are attractively designed for comfort and convenience. All cabins are fully air conditioned with an en-suite bathroom with shower (please note cabins 601 - 605 and 507 have a bath with shower attachment) and a selection of toiletries in addition to a hairdryer, robes and slippers. All cabins come equipped with telephone, flat screen television, safety deposit box and other thoughtful appointments. Bottles of still and sparkling water are replenished daily. Due to the very nature of the ship, the cabins vary in shape and size, adding to the vessel’s overall charm.


$ 14439 AUD

22 sq meters. The cabins are attractively designed for comfort and convenience. All cabins are fully air conditioned with an en-suite bathroom with shower (please note cabins 601 - 605 and 507 have a bath with shower attachment) and a selection of toiletries in addition to a hairdryer, robes and slippers. All cabins come equipped with telephone, flat screen television, safety deposit box and other thoughtful appointments. Bottles of still and sparkling water are replenished daily. Due to the very nature of the ship, the cabins vary in shape and size, adding to the vessel’s overall charm.


$ 15180 AUD

25 sq meters. The cabins are attractively designed for comfort and convenience. All cabins are fully air conditioned with an en-suite bathroom with shower (please note cabins 601 - 605 and 507 have a bath with shower attachment) and a selection of toiletries in addition to a hairdryer, robes and slippers. All cabins come equipped with telephone, flat screen television, safety deposit box and other thoughtful appointments. Bottles of still and sparkling water are replenished daily. Due to the very nature of the ship, the cabins vary in shape and size, adding to the vessel’s overall charm.


$ 10549 AUD

10 to 11.5 sq meters. The cabins are attractively designed for comfort and convenience. All cabins are fully air conditioned with an en-suite bathroom with shower (please note cabins 601 - 605 and 507 have a bath with shower attachment) and a selection of toiletries in addition to a hairdryer, robes and slippers. All cabins come equipped with telephone, flat screen television, safety deposit box and other thoughtful appointments. Bottles of still and sparkling water are replenished daily. Due to the very nature of the ship, the cabins vary in shape and size, adding to the vessel’s overall charm.


$ 11105 AUD

14 to 19 sq meters. The cabins are attractively designed for comfort and convenience. All cabins are fully air conditioned with an en-suite bathroom with shower (please note cabins 601 - 605 and 507 have a bath with shower attachment) and a selection of toiletries in addition to a hairdryer, robes and slippers. All cabins come equipped with telephone, flat screen television, safety deposit box and other thoughtful appointments. Bottles of still and sparkling water are replenished daily. Due to the very nature of the ship, the cabins vary in shape and size, adding to the vessel’s overall charm.


$ 11475 AUD

7 to 12.5 sq meters. The cabins are attractively designed for comfort and convenience. All cabins are fully air conditioned with an en-suite bathroom with shower (please note cabins 601 - 605 and 507 have a bath with shower attachment) and a selection of toiletries in addition to a hairdryer, robes and slippers. All cabins come equipped with telephone, flat screen television, safety deposit box and other thoughtful appointments. Bottles of still and sparkling water are replenished daily. Due to the very nature of the ship, the cabins vary in shape and size, adding to the vessel’s overall charm.


$ 11846 AUD

11.5 to 18 sq meters. The cabins are attractively designed for comfort and convenience. All cabins are fully air conditioned with an en-suite bathroom with shower (please note cabins 601 - 605 and 507 have a bath with shower attachment) and a selection of toiletries in addition to a hairdryer, robes and slippers. All cabins come equipped with telephone, flat screen television, safety deposit box and other thoughtful appointments. Bottles of still and sparkling water are replenished daily. Due to the very nature of the ship, the cabins vary in shape and size, adding to the vessel’s overall charm.


$ 12772 AUD

11 to 25 sq meters. The cabins are attractively designed for comfort and convenience. All cabins are fully air conditioned with an en-suite bathroom with shower (please note cabins 601 - 605 and 507 have a bath with shower attachment) and a selection of toiletries in addition to a hairdryer, robes and slippers. All cabins come equipped with telephone, flat screen television, safety deposit box and other thoughtful appointments. Bottles of still and sparkling water are replenished daily. Due to the very nature of the ship, the cabins vary in shape and size, adding to the vessel’s overall charm.


$ 13698 AUD

21 sq meters. The cabins are attractively designed for comfort and convenience. All cabins are fully air conditioned with an en-suite bathroom with shower (please note cabins 601 - 605 and 507 have a bath with shower attachment) and a selection of toiletries in addition to a hairdryer, robes and slippers. All cabins come equipped with telephone, flat screen television, safety deposit box and other thoughtful appointments. Bottles of still and sparkling water are replenished daily. Due to the very nature of the ship, the cabins vary in shape and size, adding to the vessel’s overall charm.


$ 14439 AUD

22 sq meters. The cabins are attractively designed for comfort and convenience. All cabins are fully air conditioned with an en-suite bathroom with shower (please note cabins 601 - 605 and 507 have a bath with shower attachment) and a selection of toiletries in addition to a hairdryer, robes and slippers. All cabins come equipped with telephone, flat screen television, safety deposit box and other thoughtful appointments. Bottles of still and sparkling water are replenished daily. Due to the very nature of the ship, the cabins vary in shape and size, adding to the vessel’s overall charm.


$ 15180 AUD

25 sq meters. The cabins are attractively designed for comfort and convenience. All cabins are fully air conditioned with an en-suite bathroom with shower (please note cabins 601 - 605 and 507 have a bath with shower attachment) and a selection of toiletries in addition to a hairdryer, robes and slippers. All cabins come equipped with telephone, flat screen television, safety deposit box and other thoughtful appointments. Bottles of still and sparkling water are replenished daily. Due to the very nature of the ship, the cabins vary in shape and size, adding to the vessel’s overall charm.

Note: Current p/p indicative rate. Final price may change due to currency fluctuations.

Cruise Itinerary

Fly by scheduled flight. On arrival transfer to the MS Serenissima and enjoy welcome drinks and dinner as we moor overnight.


We start our exploration of Istanbul at the Hippodrome, the centre of civic life in the capital of the Ottoman Empire and the site of speeches, chariot races, and riots. Next, visit the nearby Blue Mosque, named for its glorious 17th century painted tiles; and the Hagia Sophia, first a Byzantine patriarchal basilica, later an imperial mosque and today a museum. Known for its massive domed roof and colourful mosaics, this structure is widely regarded as the world’s finest example of Byzantine architecture. A short walk brings us to the Basilica Cistern, which dates back to the 6th century and is supported by 336 Corinthian columns making it one of the most magnificent covered cisterns in Istanbul. Return to the ship for lunch and enjoy a free afternoon to explore further. Be on deck this evening as we sail down the Bosphorus towards the Black Sea.


From the port of Bartin in ancient Paphlagonia, we have a choice of excursions today. The morning tour will include a drive along the coast to nearby Amasra (ancient Sesamus) which is located on a headland in between two bays. We will explore the attractive old town which was founded by the Milesians in the 6th century BC and later became an important possession of both Byzantium and Genoa. See the Genoese citadel and learn more about its Greek and Roman past. Alternatively join a full day tour to the UNESCO site of Safranbolu, a preserved Ottoman style town named for its prominence in saffron production. On a walking tour we will visit the marketplace, the streets where copper makers, iron makers and Turkish delight makers work, the Mosque and a Turkish Hammam all from the time of Suleiman the Magnificent. Our tour will end at a typical Safranbolu house which is now an ethnographical museum. Enjoy lunch in an Ottoman caravanserai before returning to the MS Serenissima and sailing this evening.


Founded by the Greeks in the 7th century BC Sinop flourished as a Black Sea port on the caravan route. On a walking tour this morning we will discover this walled city including the 13th century Alaadin Mosque, constructed after the Seljuk conquest of the Sinop Province. The architecture is representative of the Seljuk period consisting of a rectangular plan featuring five domes. A fountain adorns the courtyard, which also contains ancient tombs. We will visit the Archaeological Museum of Sinop with a collection of objects dating from the Hittite, Hellenistic, Phrygian, Roman and Byzantine periods and the Ethnography Museum located in a typical Ottoman House. Return to the ship for lunch and enjoy a relaxing afternoon cruising.


Trabzon is a gateway to Eastern Turkey and Iran which was founded in the 7th century BC. On our morning excursion we drive through the picturesque mountain scenery to Sumela to see the dramatic Byzantine monastery carved out of a sheer rock face in the Pontic Alps. After lunch on board we discover the church of Aya Sofia and the old town of Trabzon, then travel to the outskirts to visit Ataturk’s lovely villa set high on a cliff above the city.


Enjoy a day amongst the sights and sounds of charming Batumi. On a full day tour visit the ancient Gonio fortress dating back to the first century AD and the Ethnographic Museum that highlights the varied and fascinating history of the country. Continue to the impressive botanical garden ‘Dendrarium’ and see the golden statue of Medea before heading to the bustling farmers market. Lunch will be served in a local restaurant where we will also enjoy a truly exhilarating private performance of Georgian song and dance by the Adjara State Assembly of Music and Dance.


We have a day to explore delightful Sochi, framed by the Caucasus Mountains and famous for its marvellous climate and health spas. On a morning tour we will visit Dagomy’s tea plantation, the most northerly in the world where we learn about the cultivation processes and challenges before having the chance to enjoy a local brew. After lunch in a local restaurant we will visit Stalin’s Dacha; built in 1937 as his summer residence it remains intact as it was in Stalin’s time.


Enjoy a day at sea as we cruise to Odessa. Maybe join one of the lectures or find a spot on deck.


We have a day and a half to explore this fascinating city. Founded by Catherine the Great in 1794 following the Russian victory over the Turks, Odessa today is a busy port and popular resort. On our morning tour we will see the famous Potemkin Steps, Primorsky Boulevard and the Preobrazhensky Cathedral. This afternoon is free to explore at leisure and we hope to enjoy a concert this evening at the acoustically perfect Opera House. On our second day we recall Odessa’s former splendour by visiting the impressive Pototsky Palace which is now home to the Fine Arts Museum which contains the most significant collection of art in the Ukraine. After our visit a short drive takes us to the Gagarin Mansion, designed by Otton in the middle of the 19th century for the nobleman, Prince Gagarin. This now houses the Museum for Russian & Ukraine Literature. Tour the museum before enjoying a superb violin recital in the Golden Hall. Return to the ship for lunch and enjoy a relaxing afternoon at sea.


During breakfast we arrive in Constanta, known as Tomis to the Greeks but named Constanta by the Romans. Choose this morning to stay in Constanta and enjoy a tour to include the excellent Archaeological Museum and a visit to the Treasury to see the gigantic 3rd century Roman Mosaic. Later, stretch your legs with a walk along the Black Sea waterfront promenade. Alternatively join a full day tour to Bucharest. We will explore the main sights of the city and see the boulevards with their decidedly French style. After lunch in a local restaurant we visit the Parliament Palace, the second largest administrative building in the world at 3.77 million square feet and renowned as former dictator Ceausescu’s most infamous creation.


After a morning at sea we will arrive in the ancient town of Nessebar, a delightful place to spend an afternoon. A guided walk of the town will include the 5th century Bishopric, the 12th century St Stephen’s Church and some of the traditional-style houses with their overhanging first floors above winding cobbled lanes.


Disembark after breakfast and transfer to the airport for our scheduled flight to London or Manchester.


Itineraries are subject to change.


Serenissima

Vessel Type: Small Ship Length: 87 metres Passenger Capacity: 95 Built / refurbished: 1960 / 2013 / 2019 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. 

Highlights

• Discover Istanbul, Bartin & Sinop. • Enjoy Batumi, Georgia. • Explore Sochi, Russia. • Visit Odessa, Ukraine.

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