This was out 13th cruise with Windstar and it did not dissappoint. It was glorious. Windstsr set us up in a wonderful hotel in Istanbul for 2 days with a terrific representative who was very helpful throughout our stay. Boarding the ship was the norrmal, easy process made more pleasant by being greeted by friendly faces and a glass of champagne. After the five minute boarding process we meandered to the Vernanda for a delicious lunch watching the busy and exciting harbor of Istanbul. The food on this cruise was one of the best I experienced. It was evident that Windstar purveyed the food locally and had selections of delicious local dishes.
The sail away out of Istanbul Harbor was extraordinary with the very busy and picturesque harbor as the background to the sails being hoisted as the music of 1492 was being played. This cruise was loaded with amazing visuals of the Dardenals and the gorgeous islands of both Turkey and Greece. Somtimes the visuals from the ship were actually prettier and more dramatic than the islands themselves. Evening dining below the cliffs of Santorini is a sight never to be forgotten. Following the routes of the ancient Greeks and Turks was fascinating, the beautiful harbor of Bodrum, the glories of the past in Ephesus, swimming in the clear, warm shimmering Aegean Sea off the swimming platform, dining on local dishes, wonderful service that Windstar is noted for all made for a perfect cruise. We were 12 friends on this cruise 7 past cruisers and 5 new cruisers, we all agreed it was a fantastic cruise.