The capital of Denmark, Copenhagen, is a stylish, cosmopolitan city. It is the birthplace of Hans Christian Andersen, the famous author of the Little Mermaid and other childhood fables. Thanks to excellent urban planning, this is a very easy city to navigate, either by foot or by bike. Also, with a strong focus on all things green and sustainable, Copenhagen is an extremely clean urban center. It is also a gourmet capital. There are 15 restaurants with Michelin stars and there is a focus on farm-to-table experiences. History buffs will enjoy exploring the many museums and castles. This city is a charming place that mixes old and new together, appealing to all ages and tastes.
Arrive in Germany’s capital city, Berlin, in the morning and learn about it’s turbulent history, visiting the Brandenburg Gate, the Reichstag and the Jewish Museum.
Continue on to Warnemünde, Germany, is situated north of the Hanseatic town of Rostock, where the Warnow river flows into the Baltic Sea. As a modern resort area, this town is steeped in over 800 years of history. Famous for the white, pristine beaches it was a fishing village for centuries before it became a resort. Visit the historic lighthouse that was built in 1897 that is located at the entrance to Rostock Harbor. In the canal area, or, der Alte Strom, (Old Channel), you will find various restaurants, pubs and traditional fishing boats. Nearby is the house where Edward Munch lived ~ he was the Norwegian painter of “The Scream”.
Royal Caribbean’s Jewel of the Seas offers passengers luxurious comfort and non-stop entertainment. On board you can spend each evening in the ship’s theater watching Broadway-style performances or try your luck in the large Vegas-style casino. Whet your appetite as the ship has gourmet food available around the clock, including fresh choices at the Windjammer Café, savory steaks at Chops Grille steakhouse, as well as a mix of comfort foods and delicacies from the room service menu. Children aboard the Jewel of the Seas will also have lots of fun options, exploring the mini-golf course or participating in the Adventure Ocean Youth Program.
Tallin, a beautifully preserved medieval city, a busy port & the capital of Estonia. It is located in the Baltic Sea on the north coast. Originally called Reval, it became independent in 1920 and the name was was changed to Tallin. The walled, cobblestoned Old Town, is a wonderful visit, full of quirky cafes and shops. Dating back to the 11th century, there are fortresses, cathedrals and defensive towers to see. For animal lovers, Tallin Zoo, founded in 1939, is a must visit, especially for families. The Zoo prides itself on managing to assemble one of Europe’s most fascinating variety of species.
Founded by Peter the Great in 1703, St. Petersburg has been an imperial capital for over two centuries and remains Russia’s cultural center, as well as strategic port. The city is home to the iconic “Bronze Horseman” statue, a tribute to it’s founder. The Summer House, was designed by Domenico Trezzini, in Baroque style, for Peter the Great. The Tsar moved into the partially completed palace in 1712 and spent most of his summers here until he died in 1725. The palace is now a museum and the adjacent Summer Garden are both open to the public. Located between the bank of the Neva River and the Palace Square, is the Winter Palace, which was built between 1754 and 1762. Designed by Bartolomeo Rastrelli, and again in Baroque-style, this green-and-white palace is famous for it’s many windows. Catherine the Great was the first royal occupant. The palace is now part of a group of magnificent buildings that is called the State Hermitage Museum which holds one of the world’s greatest collections of art.
Prepare to have a Helsinki good time. Located on the shore of the Gulf of Finland, this capital city is the most populous area in the country and the center for politics, finance, education and research. The island of Iso Vasikkasaari, a short ferry ride from Helsinki, is a magnificent destination. There are two beaches and nature on the island is diverse and lush. For military or history buffs, the Hietaniemen Hautausmaa, a famous cemetery near Helsinki is worth visiting. Or enjoy the Vuosaaren Urheilutalo, a versatile sports facility open to the public, with two swimming pools and sauna, as well as spa facilities. There is also an array of fine art, architecture and design museums throughout this diverse city.
On the island of Gotland, in the Baltic sea, you will find the charming city of Visby. With a population of approximately 23,000, it is one of the best preserved medieval towns in Scandinavia. Here you will find rose covered cottages, turret and spires as well as winding cobblestoned streets. Visby is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Take the two and a half mile walk along the medieval stone wall called “Ringmuren” that encircles the city. The name “Visby” comes from the Old Norse Vi, meaning sacrificial place. Check out the Gotland Museum to learn about the island’s fascinating history from the Stone Age to Viking trading settlement up to the present day.
Visby port is also famous for it’s lively night life. The main square, Stora Torget is always busy in with plenty of bars, restaurants and entertainment options.
There are three main ports in Latvia, Riga, Ventspils and Lepaja. As Lativa is the main route through the Baltic Sea for transit trade, these are very busy ports. Riga is located on a 10 mile stretch along the Daugava River and is the capital of Latvia. It is a cultural city known for it’s many museums and concerts halls. Be sure to check out the 13th century Dome Cathedral, one of the most impressive churches in the Baltic States. The pedestrian only medieval Old Town is a great shopping area and restaurant area, as well as home to Livu square, famous for it’s buzzing nightlife.
Stockholm, capital of Sweden, is one of Europe’s friendliest and most welcoming cities. Spread idyllically across 14 islands in the Baltic sea, and connected by 50 bridges, it is nicknamed “Venice of the north”. Established in 1252, it grew into a popular port for travelers and traders alike. It mixes together its medieval and modern history – both preserving the old and embracing the new. Stockholm is constantly evolving and is considered one of Europe’s leading cultural capitals. This city prides itself on innovation, whether in the technology sector, food or the environment. Take some time and visit Gamla Stan. Painstakingly preserved, this literally means “Old Town” and is one of the largest collections of 16th century houses in Europe. Wander through the enchanting medieval streets and see the vividly painted Mediterranean style houses. In SoFo/Nytorget, South of Folkungagatan, visitors can find unique coffee shops, vintage shops, and a kitsch flair everywhere. It’s also a haven for artists and designers. Don’t miss the Nytorget Urban Deli, a giant supermarket, deli, bistro, bar, and bakery complex all in one.
On your final day in Stockholm visit the impressive Kungliga Slottet (Royal Palace) in Gamla Stan. It is one of the Europe’s largest castles and the official residence of the Swedish Royal family. Built in the 13th century, this enormous castle has over 600 rooms and 11 floors. The palace contains many interesting things to see. In addition to the Royal Apartments there are three museums steeped in regal history: the Treasury with the regalia, the Tre Kronor medieval museum and Gustav III’s Museum of Antiquities.
During the summer months the Skansen Open-Air Museum is open. It is Sweden in miniature, with houses and farmsteads on display. It is also houses a zoo with native animals. Walk through time and experience 18th century life, all enhanced by characters dressed in period costume. There is also a contemporary modern art museum, Moderna Museet. Specifically designed with children in mind, an audio guide tells the story of different pieces of art as they explore. There are various interactive activities with fun puzzles and tasks to captivate attention. Lastly, the entire family can enjoy the Royal Gift shop, situated in the outer Courtyard. Here you can find textiles, porcelain, glass, pots and trays crafted with patterns from the original fabrics and decor of the Royal Collections over time.