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Setting sail from Barcelona
Barcelona, the cosmopolitan capital of Catalonia, is one of our favourite ports of call. From the warren-like medieval streets of the Barri Gòtic to the fantastical modernist architecture of Antoni Gaudí, from the dizzy heights of Mount Tibidabo to the golden sands of Barceloneta, there's never a dull moment in this most beguiling of cities. Take a stroll along the Ramblas, soak up the wonderful art of Picasso and Miró, or watch Lionel Messi work his mesmerising magic at the Camp Nou. Barcelona is truly a city with something for everyone.
Gaudí’s crowning masterpiece, the church of La Sagrada Familia, is an utterly unique building, a soaring structure that’s rich in bizarre little details. It’s also still not finished; despite the fact that construction began in 1882, the current completion date is scheduled for 2026!
The crumbling, sun-baked seafront city of Cádiz is said to be the oldest continuously inhabited settlement in the western world, founded by the Phoenicians around 1100 BC. Although the city lacks any obvious landmarks, it’s rich in atmosphere, and plays host to one of Spain’s most colourful carnivals.
31 May - 1 June
Spread across steep hillsides that overlook the Rio Tejo, Lisbon’s colourful cityscape includes Gothic cathedrals, majestic monasteries and quaint museums. But for many the best times will be had wandering the narrow lanes of Lisbon’s lovely backstreets, with their great local food, wine and music.
Portugal: Porto (Leixões)
Blessed with a dramatic setting on the steep banks of the river Douro, Portugal’s second city is currently enjoying something of a renaissance, and is best known as the home of the country’s most famous export, port wine.
Saint-Malo grew rich off the back of maritime trade and its plundering corsairs, a seafaring heritage that is still proudly on display today. It’s great fun getting lost in the streets of the walled old town, and the famous medieval abbey of Mont Saint-Michel is an easy day-trip.
An important naval base and major commercial port, Cherbourg is the gateway to the many attractions of Normandy, including the Bayeux Tapestry and the beaches where the D-Day landings took place. Cherbourg’s excellent Cité de la Mer maritime museum is also well worth a visit.
Situated on the southern bank of the Seine estuary, Honfleur was once one of France’s most important ports. It was also a favourite location of Monet and the Impressionists, and art lovers may well recognise the elegant Renaissance architecture of the old harbour, the Vieux Bassin.
Rouen has endured a turbulent history: it was here that Joan of Arc was burnt at the stake in 1431, and much of the city was destroyed during World War II. Many cruise visitors head straight for Paris, an hour away by train, which is a shame since there’s so much to see in Rouen, including a beautiful cathedral and the atmospheric Medieval quarter.
Arriving in London (Greenwich)
Greenwich is one of London's most fascinating boroughs, rich in maritime history and with a discernible seaside feel, in spite of the fact that it lies just 8 miles downstream from the city centre. This was once the seat of British naval power, and you can learn more about the area's seafaring heritage at the fascinating National Maritime Museum. Other attractions include the Cutty Sark, the O2 Arena and the Royal Observatory, where you can straddle two hemispheres by placing one foot either side of the Greenwich Meridian Line.
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
Where to stay in Barcelona
The lovely Hotel Arts on the sea front is perfectly located for a pre- or post-cruise stay, and has great restaurants too.
Take a day trip to the attractive city of Girona, with its fascinating mix of Gothic, Moorish and Modernist architecture, as well as an exceptionally well preserved Jewish Quarter.