The month of May is the perfect time for cruising in the Mediterranean. Just about everything is as perfect as it can be, from the comfortable temperatures to the relatively crowd free sites. Join us aboard the MS Island Sky for what promises to be an informative and relaxing journey and immerse yourselves in the historical and cultural gems of the hidden Mediterranean. As we sail from Malta to Istanbul we will visit ancient sites, excellent museums, charming villages and see some of the loveliest scenery imaginable whilst enjoying all the comforts of our vessel. We will have the added benefit of excellent local guides and our knowledgeable onboard guest speaker who will bring to life all we see.

Highlights


• Sail from Malta and see the wonders of Calabria and Puglia in Southern Italy.

• Spend three days in Albania visiting sights only opening up now 25 years after the fall of communism and Greek islands where we can enjoy guided tours as well as time to wander and explore independently.

• Enjoy a transit of the Corinth Canal which is only possible for a ship such as ours.


Fly by scheduled flight. Arrive this afternoon and transfer to the MS Island Sky.
Relax onboard this morning as we cruise to Italy, maybe join one of the lectures or find a spot on deck. Over lunch we arrive in the Calabrian port of Crotone which was once one of the most important settlements on Magna Graecia. This afternoon we drive inland to Santa Severina, a pretty town overlooking the Neto River valley. After our tour of the town there will be the opportunity to taste the famous local Ciro wines and sample the local cuisine: olive oil, local cold cuts and a selection of cheese before returning to the ship.
From the port of Otranto we will drive to Lecce, often referred to as ‘The Florence of the South’ with its amazing collection of Baroque architecture. A guided walk will include a visit to the beautifully decorated Santa Croce Basilica and Piazza Duomo, considered one of the finest and most impressive squares in southern Italy. After the tour, there will be an exclusive, private visit to the 15th century Palazzo Tamborino-Cezzi. The owner of the palazzo will personally take us on a tour, sharing interesting stories and anecdotes regarding his family and the palazzo itself. Enjoy a light lunch of local specialities before a concert of traditional music of the Salento region called La Pizzica.
This morning we enter the Gulf of Kotor and sail up the fjord-like entrance to the Medieval town and UNESCO World Heritage Site of Kotor. This really is an extraordinary place full of marvellous architecture and pretty town squares. Our morning guided walk will include the 12th century cathedral of St Trython, the ancient town gates, the Maritime Museum and Romanesque churches including St Luke’s. After lunch onboard enjoy the afternoon and evening at leisure.
There will be a choice of activities today and on the full day tour we will drive from Kotor through the Montenegro countryside. We will cross the border into Albania to reach Shkodra which was founded in the 4th century BC and has been occupied by the Romans, Serbians and Venetians. Here we will visit the Rozafa Castle which rises majestically on a rocky hill just outside the city, and explore the museum within the walls. We will continue into the countryside for lunch where we will enjoy a slow food experience of Albanian specialities before returning to the MS Island Sky which will have relocated to Shengjin port. Alternatively you may prefer to stay onboard and enjoy a day cruising through the Kotor fjord and along the coast.
Located around ten miles from the port of Vlore, Sazan is Albania’s largest island albeit at only 2.2 square miles. Having been under Roman, Byzantine and Ottoman control due to its strategic location it was occupied by the Italians in 1914 and only returned to Albania in 1947. During the Cold War the Russians built a submarine base and the Albanian Communist regime built a military base complete with bunkers and tunnels which could withstand a nuclear attack or western invasion. Since 1992, following the end of communism, the island has fallen into disrepair but we are able to explore this derelict base and ruined buildings which still contain original furniture and the tunnels. We return to the MS Island Sky for lunch and this afternoon explore the rest of the island which is situated in the Karaburan – Sazan National Marine Park.
Our last call in Albania sees us discover the archaeological and ancient city of Butrint, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Explore the ruins that feature the remains of many eras and cultures. From the Hellenistic period there are temples, the promenade and the 4th century BC theatre. From the Roman era are the public baths, gymnasium and fountains. From the Byzantine era we see chapels and the large Basilica of St Peter and St Paul, whilst the Venetians are represented by a watchtower and a small castle with commanding views over the Straits of Corfu. Return to the MS Island Sky for lunch and enjoy an afternoon cruising.
From our berth in Itea, we will drive through lush olive groves up to Delphi, stunningly situated upon a mountain terrace and one of Greece’s most important sites of antiquity. Our visit begins at the Castalian Spring, erupting from the spot where Pegasus is said to have struck his hoof. We will continue up the Sacred Way, passing the treasury of the Athenians and the bases of many monuments, the temple of Apollo, the 5000 seat theatre dating from the fourth century BC and the ancient stadium. Return to the vessel for lunch and in the late afternoon we will transit the Corinth Canal.
Nafplion’s sheltered location below a rocky headland and large natural fortress crowned by a Venetian castle is perhaps unrivalled in Greece. From here we will enjoy a scenic drive through the Argos Plain, once ruled by Agamemnon, conqueror of Troy, to the famous citadel of Mycenae. High above the confluence of two boulder-strewn ravines, Mycenae is entered by way of the Lion Gate. Once inside the gate, we will explore the Royal Palace, the shaft graves and the remains of the city walls. Return to the MS Island Sky and enjoy a free afternoon in Nafplion.
This corner of the Cyclades is far from the well-trodden tracks of the big ships. After breakfast go ashore to the little known island of Sifnos where you will be greeted by traditional white houses, picturesque churches and narrow lanes and alleys. Our morning will include Apollonia, the islands tiny capital, the Virysianni Monastery and the villages of Kastro and Artemos both delightful places to wander and admire the traditional architecture. Over lunch we sail to the little known island of Folegandros. Explore at leisure the clifftop capital of Chora, a wonderfully picturesque village.
The birthplace of Homer, Chios remained a significant Aegean island into the Byzantine period, when the monastery of Nea Moni, with its 11th century mosaics was built. The island is rich in ancient ruins and this morning we will visit the 11th century Monastery of Nea Moni, a UNESCO World Heritage site and one of the most important ecclesiastical monuments in Greece. Return to the MS Island Sky for lunch and this afternoon you have the choice to relax and explore Chios town independently or join a tour to the south of the island where we visit the beautifully preserved 14th century fortress village of Mesta and the elaborately decorated houses of Pirgi.
Arrive over breakfast in Myrina, the small capital of Limnos. We have a choice of activities this morning, maybe enjoy a gentle walk along an idyllic rural pathway to the pretty village of Kondias. Alternatively enjoy a morning in Myrina which is known for its romantic castle built over the rocky promontory. The castle foundations date back to Classical times, when it was the site of a temple of Artemis. We will continue to the archaeological museum before returning to the vessel for lunch and a final relaxing afternoon at sea.
Disembark this morning and transfer to the airport for your scheduled flight to London.

Magellan Deck (Forward)

£ 5495 GBP pp
Magellan Deck (Forward)
Suites measure approximately 21m2. Beds can be configured as twin or double and there is a divider between the seating and bed area. Suites feature a walk-in wardrobe, sofa, coffee table, arm-chair, vanity table with large mirror and stool, bedside lamps, full length dressing mirror, hairdryer, television, electronic safe, air-conditioning and refrigerator.

Magellan Suite

£ 5695 GBP pp
Magellan Suite
Suites measure approximately 21.35m2. The beds can be configured as twin or double and there is a divider between the seating and bed area. Suites feature a walk-in wardrobe, sofa, coffee table, arm-chair, vanity table with large mirror and stool, bedside lamps, full length dressing mirror, hairdryer, television, electronic safe, air-conditioning and refrigerator.

Columbus Deck Superior

£ 6095 GBP pp
Columbus Deck Superior
Suites measure approximately 22 m2. Beds can be configured as twin or double and there is a divider between the seating and bed area. Suites feature a walk-in wardrobe, sofa, coffee table, arm-chair, vanity table with large mirror and stool, bedside lamps, full length dressing mirror, hairdryer, television, electronic safe, air-conditioning and refrigerator.

Marco Polo Deck Premium

£ 6495 GBP pp
Marco Polo Deck Premium
Suites measure approximately 20.9m2. The beds can be configured as twin or double and there is a divider between the seating and bed area. Suites feature a large wardrobe, sofa, coffee table, arm-chair, vanity table with large mirror and stool, bedside lamps, full length dressing mirror, hairdryer, television, electronic safe, air-conditioning and refrigerator.

Marco Polo Deck Corner Suite

£ 6695 GBP pp
Marco Polo Deck Corner Suite
Suites measure approximately 22m2. Beds can be configured as twin or double and there is a divider between the seating and bed area. These suites have two windows, one at the front and one at the side. Suites feature a large wardrobe, sofa, coffee table, arm-chair, vanity table with large mirror and stool, bedside lamps, full length dressing mirror, hairdryer, television, electronic safe, air-conditioning and refrigerator.

Magellan Suite Sole

£ 6895 GBP pp
Magellan Suite Sole
Suites measure approximately 21.35m2. The beds can be configured as twin or double and there is a divider between the seating and bed area. Suites feature a walk-in wardrobe, sofa, coffee table, arm-chair, vanity table with large mirror and stool, bedside lamps, full length dressing mirror, hairdryer, television, electronic safe, air-conditioning and refrigerator.

Erikson Deck Deluxe Balcony

£ 7095 GBP pp
Erikson Deck Deluxe Balcony
Suites measure approximately 20.9m2 with an extra 4 m2 for the balcony. Beds can be configured as twin or double. Suites feature a large wardrobe, sofa, coffee table, arm-chair, vanity table with large mirror and stool, bedside lamps, full length dressing mirror, hairdryer, television, electronic safe, air-conditioning and refrigerator.

Columbus Deck Superior Sole

£ 7295 GBP pp
Columbus Deck Superior Sole
Suites measure approximately 22 m2. Beds can be configured as twin or double and there is a divider between the seating and bed area. Suites feature a walk-in wardrobe, sofa, coffee table, arm-chair, vanity table with large mirror and stool, bedside lamps, full length dressing mirror, hairdryer, television, electronic safe, air-conditioning and refrigerator.

Explorer Owners Balcony

£ 7495 GBP pp
Explorer Owners Balcony
Suites measure approximately 22m2 with an extra 8m2 for the balcony. Beds can be configured as twin or double and there is a divider between the seating and bed area. Suites feature a large wardrobe, sofa, coffee table, arm-chair, vanity table with large mirror and stool, bedside lamps, full-length dressing mirror, hairdryer, television, electronic safe, air-conditioning and refrigerator

Island Sky

Vessel Type:  Luxury Small Ship

Length:  90 metres

Passenger Capacity:  116 

Built:  1992 / refurbished 2010

With a maximum passenger capacity of only 116, a vessel of her size is capable of carrying many more but instead the MS Island Sky has the benefit of unusually large suites, luxuriously appointed public areas and spacious outside decks.

On board there is a high ratio of crew to passengers. Our friendly crew of 75 are mainly Filipino and Eastern European and our Scandinavian captains are experienced mariners, having been in service aboard large 2000 plus passenger vessels and who now prefer a less frantic life aboard a small ship.   If, like them and us, you prefer a more peaceful life at sea, you will find the MS Island Sky the perfect ship. When choosing the vessel for your next voyage of discovery, you can select a ship with endless entertainment and impersonal service or come with us where peace, high quality service and attention to detail are the order of the day. We promise there will be no organised entertainment, fancy dress, deck games or any of the usual big ship experiences. The atmosphere on board is more akin to a private yacht or country hotel. A little music in the lounge or bar after dinner, guest speakers, informative port briefings from our cruise director and of course good food which may be enjoyed leisurely in the attractive dining room. After a day ashore you will return to the comfort and peace of a well run and exceedingly comfortable ship.

Your Suite
Onboard there are 57 exceptionally spacious and well designed suites. All feature a sitting room area and some have private balconies. The feeling of luxury is enhanced by the wood panelling and brass, which predominates throughout the vessel conveying the atmosphere of a private yacht. The passenger accommodation is arranged over five decks and all suites have outside views. Each affords considerable comfort with en-suite bathroom featuring marble-topped vanity unit with sink and walk-in shower, large wardrobes, dressing table with large mirror and stool and excellent storage. There is a mini-fridge, flat screen television with inbuilt DVD player which can also play CDs and a telephone in each suite. Bottled water, towelling dressing gowns and slippers are also provided for your comfort. Other facilities include a programmable electronic safe, hairdryer, assorted toiletries and individually controlled air-conditioning and heating. The suites on each deck have their own colour theme. Soft hues and blended tones enhance the traditional maritime style making the passenger accommodation an inviting and relaxing place to be.

Your Space
The spacious and finely decorated public rooms include a large lounge where daily briefings and talks will be provided throughout the voyage and an elegant bar where a pianist plays periodically throughout the day. The bar also features a 24-hour tea and coffee station. The onboard library is the perfect place to relax with a book and is stocked with reference books pertaining to the places the vessel is visiting along with a selection of games and two computers with internet access. Daily newspapers and magazines are also placed in the library depending on local availability. There is also WI-FI access throughout the vessel. Outside there is a rear sun deck where meals are served in warm weather under shade, a bar and comfortable deck furniture for sun bathing or relaxing with a book. On the top deck there is a Jacuzzi and further observation and sun deck. There is also a small hairdressers on board with appointments made on request.

Your Dining
Another benefit of a small ship is the quality of the cuisine. With only one sitting and a maximum of just over 100 passengers, the galley is able to provide delicious meals. Where possible and when it meets his high standards, the chef will obtain local produce in markets or buy the catch of the day from a passing fishing boat. Such purchases enhance the well stocked larders and bring a local touch to the varied menus.

Cabin layout for Island Sky

Istanbul Post-Cruise Extension - 25th to 27th May 2017. From (545.00 GBP)

Extend you stay in Istanbul with our two night package offering the chance to explore some of the highlights of the city.

Island Sky

Island SkyIsland Sky

Luxury Expedition Luxury Expedition

13 Days from
£ 5495 GBP pp

or call us on

NZ Freephone
0800 945 3327

AUS Freephone
1800 107 715

to help you make your reservation

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