Setting sail from Athens (Piraeus)
Athens is a city awash with historical and cultural significance. Towering over the city are the gleaming columns of the Parthenon, surely one of the most iconic sights in the whole of Europe. And yet Athens is much more than an open air museum; this is a dynamic, bustling metropolis, and a place where history is still very much unfolding. For all its faults, the Greek capital possesses an energy and an optimism that are manifest in everything from the burgeoning art scene to the restaurants and bars that continue to pop up on a regular basis.
Obviously don’t miss the Acropolis, nor the new adjacent museum, where space has pointedly been left for the frieze we call the Elgin Marbles – it is really excellent. Then take time to stroll on the hills and slopes around the outcrop.
Glamorous Mykonos is the most popular of the Cyclades islands, well known as a haunt of the rich and the famous. It’s also the gateway to the nearby island of Delos, home to one of the most important archaeological sites in Greece.
Paros gleams with a classic Cycladic colour palette of whitewashed houses and blue-domed churches, and is famous for its ancient marble quarries, which provided the raw material for the Venus de Milo. The island is also home to some great restaurants, peaceful inland villages and lovely beaches.
Greece: Skiathos Town
Sunseekers have long sought out Skiathos for its beautiful beaches, and it’s a great place to spend a day just chilling out mid-way through a cruise. If the beach doesn’t appeal then Skiathos Town is worth exploring, with plenty of restaurants, tavernas and souvenir shops.
The bustling port of Volos sits on the site of the ancient city of Iolkos, the mythological home of Jason and the Argonauts. The modern city has plenty of interesting museums and churches, along with a pleasant waterfront lined with restaurants.
Greece’s bustling second city has a rich history, shaped by Roman, Byzantine and Ottoman rule, and was once home to a large Jewish community. Sadly many of Thessaloniki’s historic buildings were destroyed by a fire in 1917, but the famous White Tower survives, along with the city’s vibrant, multicultural spirit.
Kavala has a rich history dating back nearly 3,000 years, and was known in antiquity as Neapolis. Many of the city’s most interesting sights were built by the Ottomans, including the aqueduct of Suleyman the Magnificent and the beautiful Imaret, a former religious school.
The Turkish port of Kusadasi is the gateway to Ephesus, one of the most spectacular archaeological sites in the Eastern Mediterranean. This was the Roman capital of Asia Minor, and the remains constitute the most complete classical city in Europe.
The volcanic island of Milos is ringed by pretty beaches and scattered with charming villages, famous as the place where the Venus de Milo was discovered by a local peasant in 1820. Milos is also known as the ‘island of colours’ thanks to its many-hued, mineral-rich cliffs and beaches.
Arriving in Athens (Piraeus)
Once you have seen the essentials, explore further afield and you will immediately escape the tourist crowds. Visit Kerameikos cemetery, for example, or Mount Lycabettus.
Your home from home
The Azamara Journey, Quest & Pursuit are excellent small ships that offer a welcoming and relaxed club-like atmosphere.
What we love
This trio of sister ships are focused on providing destination immersion by spending as much time in port as possible with itineraries designed to include overnight stays and late evening departures. Enjoy more time to discover the local culture and when back on board relax and enjoy a vibrant array of inclusions.
|Crew:||408 International staff|
|Style:||Relaxed club-like atmosphere|
|Year built:||Journey & Quest 2000, Pursuit 2001|
|Last refurbished:||Journey & Quest 2016, Pursuit 2018|
|Cruising speed:||18.5 knots|
Tailor-make your trip
Extend your stay in Athens
At Mundy, we have long been hunting for the perfect Athenian hotel - our favourite so far is the Electra Palace in Plaka.
Excursions from Athens
Delphi is an absolute must – you’ll need a full day though, it’s quite a drive.