Whether it be the grandeur of St Petersburg and its surrounding country estates, the fascinating Baltic states and their capitals with marvellously untouched Medieval quarters, or the sheer delight of small Scandinavian ports with their unique architecture, the Baltic offers a real cornucopia of delights which are all accessible from the comfort of the MS Serenissima. After sailing from Helsinki, we begin our exploration with three days in St Petersburg, perhaps the grandest city in Europe, with its imposing 18th and 19th century architecture. We continue to Tallinn, Stockholm and Riga as well as some lesser known but equally fascinating places. The Estonian Island of Saaremaa, is a gem with its Medieval Episcopal Castle and timeless countryside and Visby on the Swedish island of Gotland, a UNESCO World Heritage site fortified by well-preserved 13th century walls. Another Baltic Island well off the beaten path is the Danish island of Christianso, this historic and carless island with its imposing fortress is a delight.

Whether your interest lies in the region’s Viking and Medieval history or the more recent events of the breakaway Baltic States, it is an endlessly fascinating region and our expert local guides and guest speakers will add much to your knowledge and understanding of this intriguing region.

Highlights


• Three days in St Petersburg

• Explore the Medieval, German town of Wismar

• Visit to Poland’s Wolin National Park

• Visits to small islands including Christianso, Bornholm, Saaremaa and Aland

• Exclusive private concert at the stunning 16th century Rundale Palace in Riga

Fly by scheduled flight. On arrival transfer to the MS Serenissima and sail this evening.
We have the luxury of three days to explore this most endlessly captivating of Russian cities. Founded in 1703 by Peter the Great, St Petersburg is a fascinating mix of classic and Baroque architecture on a network of canals. We will be including a number of tours during our time here including visits to the Peter and Paul Fortress, the wonderful Peterhof Palace and gardens, the fascinating Hermitage Museum, Catherine’s Palace at Pushkin and a canal cruise through the city. In your free time or evenings you may wish to join the optional excursion of Yussupov’s Palace, the famed scene of Rasputin’s murder, or attend a Folklore show. For anyone wishing to visit the ballet one evening we will be able to assist with bookings once the schedules for the theatres are released.
This morning we arrive in the historic maritime city of Tallinn with her awe inspiring city walls and fortifications, narrow Medieval streets and the gateways which remain remarkably well preserved. In the Upper Town we will enjoy the views from Dome Hill with the extraordinary vista of domes, spires and gables and see Toompea Castle, once a fortress, and now the seat of the Estonian parliament. Walking to the Lower Old Town we will visit the main Square where we will find the oldest pharmacy in Europe, the Gothic Cathedral and the 15th century Town Hall. After lunch onboard the afternoon will be at leisure for you to explore independently. This evening we will enjoy a concert in one of the cities venues with local musicians.
After a relaxing morning at sea we arrive at Estonia’s largest island which offers a glimpse of a bygone age. Untouched by industry it is a green and very pleasant land dotted with attractive villages in a rolling forested landscape. During an afternoon drive we will visit the lovely capital Kuressaare with its magnificent Medieval castle and stroll through the streets of the enchanting old town. Later, an island drive will take you back in time through a countryside of stone walls, thatched roofs, traditional villages and windmills.
Be on deck early this morning as we sail through the many islands of the Swedish Archipelago into Stockholm which is built on 14 small islands among open bays and narrow channels, a perfect sailing area. This morning we will enjoy a guided city tour which includes the Vasa Museum built around the 17th century warship which sank in Stockholm’s inner harbour on her maiden voyage in 1628; its discovery in 1956 and subsequent salvage in 1961 is one of the most important events in marine archaeology. In addition to the well-preserved, elaborately decorated hull, thousands of items from the ship, including hundreds of sculptures, have been recovered. On our return to the MS Serenissima we will drive through old Stockholm and past the Parliament Building and Royal Palace which overlooks the inner harbour. Spend the afternoon exploring this handsome city, independently from our central berth before we set sail.
Today we visit this once important Hanseatic port. Best explored on foot, the beautifully preserved Medieval town snuggles inside 13th-century walls, housing 44 watchtowers. In Viking times and several centuries after, the Swedish island of Gotland and especially the city of Visby, became a centre of trade in the Baltic Sea and is a World Heritage-listed site. Walk its streets from the Middle Ages and see its gardens ablaze with flowers, earning the city its nickname ‘the city of ruins and roses.’ Later, visit the Viking exhibits at the Fornsal Museum and wander the paths of the botanical gardens.
After a relaxing morning at sea we will arrive in Riga to explore Latvia’s capital by foot. Founded in the 13th century it became one of the most successful trading cities of the Baltic. Explore the Old Town with its Medieval streets lined with Hanseatic warehouses and punctuated with Gothic and Baroque churches including St Peter Cathedral, the largest Medieval church in the Baltic. After dinner we will enjoy a special private classical concert at the stunning 16th century Rundale Palace.
Today we visit the resort town of Jurmala which, in Latvian means seaside and this 20-mile stretch of seashore has been a popular Baltic spa resort since the late 19th century and a lovely place to spend a morning. Typical of Jurmala are the charming wooden summer cottages dating back to the late 19th and early 20th century, which sit alongside later summerhouses and spa health centres. After a drive through the streets of the resort, we will take a stroll to the beach where our walking tour of Jurmala begins. Discover the main promenade of Jomas Street which is lined with shops, cafes and restaurants and pause for some shopping. Admire the wooden architecture before re-joining your coach for the drive back to Riga. Enjoy lunch onboard as we enjoy a relaxing afternoon cruising.
Founded in 1252 by the Teutonic Knights of East Prussia, Klaipeda was annexed by Hitler in 1939 and almost destroyed towards the end of World War Two. Today we have a choice of touring options. You may wish to head into the countryside where we will experience village life and visit the Memorial Museum dedicated to Lithuanians sent to Siberia or who fought against the Soviets during the Cold War Years. Alternatively take the scenic drive to the Zemaitija National Park, home to Lake Plateliali and surrounded by dense forest. It was in these forests that, during the Cold War, the Soviets hid their first nuclear missile base directed at all the major European cities. Our tour will visit the Cold War Museum located in the former Soviet Missile Base. We will visit the bunkers, see the control centre and learn more about the weapons held at the site and their evolution. Return to the ship for lunch and maybe join a lecture as we enjoy an afternoon at sea.
Over breakfast we arrive at the tiny island of Christianso. Here, we see the old fortress of King Christian V and learn about the island’s past including its history as an island prison. Today, it is a very special and peaceful place where eider ducks appear everywhere and on the bird sanctuary of Grasholmen, thousands of herring gulls, razorbill and guillemot breed. Over lunch we sail to neighbouring Bornholm. Peaceful and scenic, Bornholm Island is a mixture of wheat fields, forest and an attractive coast dotted with fishing villages. On an island drive we will see the famous 12th century Osterlars Round Church and visit the town of Gudjem where we can sample the smoked herring. Also see Hammerhaus Castle offering fantastic views of the island’s rugged coastline.
The small port of Swinoujscie is the gateway to the most beautiful stretch of the Polish coast and the Wolin National Park, Poland’s first maritime park. Wolin is on the main migration path of birds in the Baltic and the white tailed eagle that shelters here is the symbol of the park. We will spend time in the park which is home to deer, wild boar and also European Bison before continuing to Miedzyzdroje where we find a former German bunker which was used as a base in World War Two and is now a museum of a secret weapon, the V3 supergun. Continue to Kamien Pomorski which from the 14th century belonged to the Hanseatic League. The town was badly damaged in World War Two, but remnants of the old town walls with Wolin Gate have survived down to the present. We will see the Gothic arcaded town hall which has been rebuilt, several half-timbered houses and the Gothic Church of St Nicholas, which now houses the Regional Museum. The town’s most valuable architectural relic is the 12th century Cathedral of St John where we enjoy a concert before viewing the priceless late 13th century mural paintings which have survived in its presbytery and side chapel.
The Medieval town of Wismar was a major trading centre of the Hanseatic League in the 14th and 15th centuries before coming under Swedish rule in the 17th century. Today the small, photogenic city is a lovely place to explore through the cobbled streets and down to the picturesque old harbour. It is also our base for a visit to one of Germany’s most decorative castles in Schwerin, the capital of Mecklenburg. After a relaxing lake cruise we will visit the grand residence of the former Dukes of Mecklenburg gaining an insight into the ancestors and royalty of Mecklenburg Western Pomerania. While here, enjoy viewing the lovely painted oil canvasses and admire intricate wooden carvings and inlays in this fairy-tale castle museum. We return to the ship for lunch followed by an afternoon at leisure in Wismar.
Disembark this morning and transfer to the airport for your scheduled flight to London.

Inside cabin

£ 4895 GBP pp
Inside cabin
The inside cabins are approx 10 square metres. All cabins are fully air conditioned with an en-suite bathroom with shower and a selection of toiletries in addition to a hairdryer, robes and slippers. All cabins come equipped with telephone, flat screen television, safety deposit box and other thoughtful appointments. Bottles of still and sparkling water are replenished daily.

Inside single

£ 4895 GBP pp
Inside single
Inside single cabins range in size from 9.9 to 11.52 square metres. All cabins are fully air conditioned with an en-suite bathroom with shower and a selection of toiletries in addition to a hairdryer, robes and slippers. All cabins come equipped with telephone, flat screen television, safety deposit box and other thoughtful appointments. Bottles of still and sparkling water are replenished daily.

Standard Stateroom

£ 5195 GBP pp
Standard Stateroom
The standard staterooms range in size from 10 to 15.5 square metres. All cabins are fully air conditioned with an en-suite bathroom with shower and a selection of toiletries in addition to a hairdryer, robes and slippers. All cabins come equipped with telephone, flat screen television, safety deposit box and other thoughtful appointments. Bottles of still and sparkling water are replenished daily.

Standard Single

£ 5295 GBP pp
Standard Single
The standard single cabins range in size from 7.1 to 12.7 square metres. All cabins are fully air conditioned with an en-suite bathroom with shower and a selection of toiletries in addition to a hairdryer, robes and slippers. All cabins come equipped with telephone, flat screen television, safety deposit box and other thoughtful appointments. Bottles of still and sparkling water are replenished daily.

Standard Stateroom Plus

£ 5395 GBP pp
Standard Stateroom Plus
The standard staterooms range in size from 10 to 15.5 square metres. All cabins are fully air conditioned with an en-suite bathroom with shower and a selection of toiletries in addition to a hairdryer, robes and slippers. All cabins come equipped with telephone, flat screen television, safety deposit box and other thoughtful appointments. Bottles of still and sparkling water are replenished daily.

Superior Stateroom

£ 5595 GBP pp
Superior Stateroom
The superior staterooms range in size from 11 to 19.6 square metres. All cabins are fully air conditioned with an en-suite bathroom with shower and a selection of toiletries in addition to a hairdryer, robes and slippers. All cabins come equipped with telephone, flat screen television, safety deposit box and other thoughtful appointments. Bottles of still and sparkling water are replenished daily.

Deluxe Stateroom

£ 6095 GBP pp
Deluxe Stateroom
The deluxe staterooms range in size from 15 to 25.4 square metres. All cabins are fully air conditioned with an en-suite bathroom with shower and a selection of toiletries in addition to a hairdryer, robes and slippers. All cabins come equipped with telephone, flat screen television, safety deposit box and other thoughtful appointments. Bottles of still and sparkling water are replenished daily.

Junior Suite

£ 6195 GBP pp
Junior Suite
The junior suites range in size from 20.9 to 21.7 square metres. All cabins are fully air conditioned with an en-suite bathroom with shower and a selection of toiletries in addition to a hairdryer, robes and slippers. All cabins come equipped with telephone, flat screen television, safety deposit box and other thoughtful appointments. Bottles of still and sparkling water are replenished daily.

Standard Stateroom Sole

£ 6395 GBP pp
Standard Stateroom Sole
The standard staterooms range in size from 10 to 15.5 square metres. All cabins are fully air conditioned with an en-suite bathroom with shower and a selection of toiletries in addition to a hairdryer, robes and slippers. All cabins come equipped with telephone, flat screen television, safety deposit box and other thoughtful appointments. Bottles of still and sparkling water are replenished daily.

Standard Stateroom Plus Sole

£ 6595 GBP pp
Standard Stateroom Plus Sole
The standard staterooms range in size from 10 to 15.5 square metres. All cabins are fully air conditioned with an en-suite bathroom with shower and a selection of toiletries in addition to a hairdryer, robes and slippers. All cabins come equipped with telephone, flat screen television, safety deposit box and other thoughtful appointments. Bottles of still and sparkling water are replenished daily.

Executive Suite

£ 6695 GBP pp
Executive Suite
The executive suites are 25 square metres. All cabins are fully air conditioned with an en-suite bathroom with shower and a selection of toiletries in addition to a hairdryer, robes and slippers. All cabins come equipped with telephone, flat screen television, safety deposit box and other thoughtful appointments. Bottles of still and sparkling water are replenished daily.

Owners Suite

£ 6695 GBP pp
Owners Suite
The owner’s suites are 22.7 square metres. All cabins are fully air conditioned with an en-suite bathroom with shower and a selection of toiletries in addition to a hairdryer, robes and slippers. All cabins come equipped with telephone, flat screen television, safety deposit box and other thoughtful appointments. Bottles of still and sparkling water are replenished daily.

Serenissima

Vessel Type: Small Ship

Length: 87 metres

Passenger Capacity: 107

Built / refurbished: 1960 / 2013

Prior to her life as the MS Andrea she spent many years cruising the Norwegian coast as the Harald Jarl. The decision by the Norwegian owners, Hurtigruten to invest in much larger new vessels, presented an opportunity to the American company, Elegant Cruises to purchase the vessel in 2002. After a substantial refit of over $20 million in Sweden she began her new life of worldwide cruising.

Perhaps, one of the best known and loved features of this vessel is its unique style. During the major refit in Sweden the then owners commissioned Swedish interior designers to create a Gustavian style interior. This bright Swedish 18th century influenced, country house style works particularly well on a vessel of this vintage, providing intimacy and classic nautical sensibility often lacking in larger vessels.

Accommodating just under 100 passengers, the 59 cabins are attractively designed for comfort and convenience and are fully air conditioned with a modern shower and toilet, telephone, flat screen televisions and other thoughtful appointments. There are eight different grades of cabin arranged over five decks and with the exception of the five inside cabins, all staterooms feature either windows or portholes.

The free seating Venice Restaurant accommodates all guests in one sitting. In addition there is an outside dining area for when the weather and itinerary permit. A new addition to the vessel is a Lido area on Deck 5 with a bar and Jacuzzi.

Other facilities on board include two lounges, a small library with two computers for internet access, a spacious observation deck, fitness area, massage and an elevator. The vessel is equipped with Zodiac craft allowing us to visit remote places where normal tender arrangements are not possible.

The European captain, officers, expedition staff, and crew offer a first class service and have been selected for their professionalism and caring attitudes. The atmosphere on board is warm and welcoming and dedicated to discovery and relaxation.

Cabin layout for Serenissima
Serenissima

SerenissimaSerenissima

Expedition Expedition

15 Days from
£ 4895 GBP pp

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