Renovated in 2015, the 34-passenger Callisto is part of Variety Cruises' fleet of small ships based in Greece and the Adriatic. Originally built in 1963 as the Marina, the ship was fully converted into a cruise vessel in 2000 and, as such, retains the sleek lines of a classic cruiser, with decks that attractively slope up toward the bow.
Onboard, Callisto is a comfortable if slightly no-frills vessel that is more akin to a private yacht. Public rooms are decorated in soothing shades of blue and gold and accented with gorgeous wood paneling. It's not hard to imagine the life of Aristotle Onassis (or Jackie O, if you prefer) as you wander into the ship's central lounge, with its bar, plush chairs and oversized windows.
Rather than being an entertainment hub like today's mega-ships, Callisto is a throwback to a time when the simple pleasure of being at sea was enough. Small enough to reach some of the most interesting ports in Greece and the Adriatic Sea, the ship serves as a comfortable home base for daily adventures; a floating oasis of calm and relaxation.
Onboard service is a passenger-to-crew ratio of 2-to-1, and the small size of Callisto makes it an excellent choice for cruisers who value social camaraderie with like-minded adult travelers.
All meals are served in the ship's wood-paneled dining room located all the way forward on Upper Deck. Food is regionally inspired and reflects the cuisine and cultures present on the ship's itinerary.
An outdoor dining area is located at the stern on Upper Deck, where meals can be enjoyed alfresco when weather and conditions permit.
Four categories of cabin are available aboard Callisto, all of which feature ocean views. Snug but economical, they reflect the typical seagoing conservatism found on many small yachts.
Category B and C cabins are located on Lower Deck. These have porthole windows and two twin beds that cannot be pushed into a queen. They each feature marble ensuite bathrooms with showers, individually controlled air conditioning, TV, telephone (for internal use), hair dryers, mini-fridge, central music, public address system and safety deposit boxes.
Category A and P cabins are slightly larger and, owing to their location on Main Deck, feature large picture windows. They have all the same amenities as Category B and C cabins, but it is worth noting that Category A and P cabins located at the bow on Main Deck are equipped with queen beds, while all other cabins of the same category have only twin beds.
Up on the Sun Deck, loungers, chairs and umbrellas, plus an abundant amount of open deck space, make this the perfect space for scenic cruising and basking in the Mediterranean's warm glow. For the more literary-inclined, the Sun Deck is also home to a circular, wood-paneled library that features wraparound windows.
Most of the entertainment onboard Callisto can be found ashore, with evenings onboard being designed for conversation and cocktails with your fellow passengers. A water sports platform at the stern of the ship offers the opportunity for more fun in the sun when conditions permit.
There is no passenger elevator aboard Callisto. As such, the ship may not be the best choice for guests with mobility issues. Wi-Fi internet is available onboard at an additional cost.
Due to the intimate nature of the Callisto and the lack of specific facilities geared for kids, the ship is only truly appropriate for families with grown children looking to experience the Adriatic together.
Callisto sails four short itineraries for Variety Cruises, including the three- or four-night Greek Islands Mini-Cruise from Athens; the seven-night Dalmatian Coast: Croatia and Montenegro voyage round trip from Dubrovnik; and the seven-night Adriatic Odyssey: Croatia, Montenegro, Albania and Greece voyage that also departs round trip from Dubrovnik.
Gem of the Adriatic!