“Opus Mediterraneo” (Aug. 14-24), a special music cruise from Venice to Barcelona, featuring renowned performers from the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, is among the 14 luxury small-ship cruises that Smithsonian Journeys will offer in the Mediterranean and Black Sea in 2012.
Each cruise is uniquely themed and accompanied by top experts who provide insights into the history, culture and artistic treasures visited en route. Additionally, famed musicians accompany several of the cruises, performing in historic venues. Prices start at $6,995 per person for a 10-day cruise and include all meals, shore excursions, house wine and beer at lunch and dinner, port charges and taxes.
All cruises will take place on the elegant Corinthian II, which accommodates 114 guests in 57 outside-facing suites. The ship features many of the amenities typically found only on much larger vessels, including a library with internet, outdoor café, gym and beauty salon. Fine continental fare is served in the dining room in single, unassigned seating. A total of 70 seasoned officers and crew staff the ship.
“Opus Mediterraneo” will include stops in Croatia’s Vis Island, Italy’s trulli villages, Malta’s historic harbor of Valletta, Sicily and Sardinia before arriving in beautiful Barcelona. Lincoln Chamber Music Society musicians David Finckel and Wu Han and their colleagues will perform music throughout.
On “Art and Culture of the Mediterranean” (April 14-27), travel from Seville to Granada to visit the legendary Alhambra, and Barcelona, to view Gaudi’s fantastical architecture. Aix-en-Provence, Corsica and a cruise up the Dalmatian coast round out this itinerary which concludes in Venice.
Guests will trace Homer’s epic saga, The Odyssey, through Turkey, Greece, Malta and Italy on the cruise “Journey of Odysseus” (May 26-June 6), and history will come alive for parents and children on “Gods and Heroes: A Voyage to Italy, Greece and Turkey,” (June 21-July 2). Youth counselors will organize activities for young people, ages 8-15, while a study leader provides insights for adult guests en route. Special rates for children start at $4,995.
A cruise to the Black Sea (July18-28) reveals the strategic importance of this great inland body of water from antiquity through World War II, demonstrating how Constantinople (modern-day Istanbul) once reigned as one of the world’s greatest capitals and how modern nations emerged. Renowned pianist Leon Fleisher will perform exclusive recitals on board with distinguished accompanying musicians.
For further information on these and other Smithsonian Journeys Mediterranean cruises, visit http://www.SmithsonianJourneys.org/luxury-small-ship-cruising.
About Smithsonian Journeys
Smithsonian Journeys is the Smithsonian Institution’s travel program, with more than 40 years dedicated to life-enriching experiences worldwide. The Smithsonian is known for “Inspiring Generations through Knowledge and Discovery,” which is central to Smithsonian Journeys and its more than 150 expert-led international and domestic tours featuring exclusive access and unforgettable experiences. For more information, call toll-free 1 (877) 338-8687 or visit http://www.SmithsonianJourneys.com.