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From the pristine beaches and ancient ruins of the Eastern Mediterranean to the artsy and flavorful countries of the Western Mediterranean, this region is easily one of the most diverse in the world. Revel at Spanish and Italian architecture, soak up some sun in Greece, explore antiquities in Istanbul and Malta or get a taste of the French countryside on the outskirts of Nice, Monte Carlo or Cannes. Some Med itineraries dip down into northern Africa; the Canary Islands are also a popular stop for repositioning cruises.
Your biggest difficulty planning a European cruise is narrowing down where you want to go. A Western Mediterranean itinerary usually includes stops in Barcelona and Monaco, as well as ports in Italy. Eastern Mediterranean cruises encompass eastern Italy, Croatia and Greece, and sometimes even Turkey and Israel. A Baltic Sea voyage brings you to Scandinavia and Russia; the Norwegian Fjords carry their own beauty. Don't forget about British Isles cruises, which allow you to visit castles in England, Scotland and London. For sun lovers, it's hard to beat the Canary Islands.
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Cruise News

Windstar and James Beard Foundation Expand on Partnership, Reveal 2018 Culinary Cruises
(1 p.m. EST) -- Windstar and the James Beard Foundation have been expanding their relationship since the line hosted a couple of theme cruises in 2016. Today, the cruise line announced the partnership will continue at least through early 2021 and revealed the 2018 line-up of culinary-themed sailings hosted by James Beard-recognized chefs.Six themed sailings each year will each feature a James Beard Foundation-selected chef, as well as a beverage expert, onboard. They will lead market tours and culinary shore excursions ashore and food, wine and spirit tastings and demos onboard. Unique dining options might include meals utilizing local ingredients and wine-pairing dinners.
Wave Season Cruise Deals 2017/2018
If you begin to notice a wave of year-end promotions to either get you on a last-minute cruise or to secure your booking for later in 2018, that's because we're in the cruise line promotional period known as wave season. Now through March, cruise lines will entice potential cruisers with cabin upgrades at no additional charge, price reductions on cruise fare and heaps of onboard spending money. Check out the latest offerings from your favorite cruise lines to see what perks and discounts might be in store this winter.
Hits & Misses From an Arctic Adventure on Hurtigruten's Spitsbergen
(11:00 a.m. GMT) -- We've just returned from an Arctic Adventure with Hurtigruten to the top of Norway -- flying right up to Kirkenes -- which lies just 15 minutes' drive from the border with Russia. Snow was several feet thick on the ground and the temperature was at a balmy minus 14 Celsius, perfect for spending a night in the Snow Hotel. We then jumped onboard Spitsbergen, and headed south for a taster of what Hurtigruten call the "Classic Coastal Voyage" -- from Kirkenes to Bergen (or vice versa), calling in at 34 ports along the way (sometimes for just 15 minutes!). Hurtigruten has sailed this route for 125 years, providing a vital link to the isolated communities dotted along 1,250 nautical miles of Norwegian coastline.Here are our hits and misses from an Arctic Adventure with Hurtigruten.

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