The Baltic Sea beautifully encompasses the waters of Denmark, Germany, Russia, Finland and Sweden. It’s easily accessible via England and remains an ideal cruise vacation for any first time cruisers or for those who don’t enjoy the heat of tropical locations. A Baltic cruise is cool, calm and charming and offering you the opportunity to see some breathtaking locations.
They offer a great alternative to those who don’t want to cruise Alaska or the Caribbean and would prefer to stay within Europe. As you’re travelling around Europe you won’t have to worry too much about the language barrier either and cruises from the UK leave from ports in Southampton, Dover and Newcastle. As the Baltic is covered is half covered with ice during the winter, Baltic cruises only run between the months of May and September. During this time the weather will vary, as it does in the UK, but that’s part of the adventure! Baltic cruise ships tend to travel at night so that travellers can make the most of daily excursions to the several ports of call during the day.
Key Ports of Call
This is one of the key ports of call on a Baltic cruise and there is so much to see and do that some cruise ships dock for two nights. The Hermitage Museum is a must visit. Here you’ll find one of the most notorious houses of art in the world featuring over 2.7 million exhibits, including pieces by Da Vinci, Matisse and Rembrandt. The Church of Our Saviour On Spilled Blood is another impressive Russian landmark. The church looks out upon the entire city and is situated on the Griboedova Canal, one of the oldest waterways in the former Russian capital. You’ll capture some vibrant photos here as there are over 7000 square metres of mosaic art. If you get chance you may also want take an evening trip to see one of St Petersburg’s sophisticated ballet or opera shows.
A gothic empire, Tallinn is the capital of Estonia and is a haven of interesting culture. The Old City of Tallinn is just a short 10 minute walk from the city’s port. This is actually a World Heritage Site and is home to an extensive range of 14th and 15th century architecture. Journey through the winding roads and glance up towards the towering spires or visit the 15th century Guildhall which is now a converted museum dedicated to town’s history. If you fancy something a little more relaxing, take a trip to see the Kadriorg Park which dominates over 250 acres of glorious urban park and features a Swan Lake, promenade and the Kadriorg Palace.
Along with Helsinki and Copenhagen, this is a capital city is an essential location for a daily excursion. Travel to the centre of Stockholm where you’ll find the Djurgården Island. This is a popular tourist location due to its lush green scenery and wide range of activities to take part in. Want a little exercise? There are regular 2 hours walking tours across the island. The Vasa Musuem is another impressive attraction in Stockholm. This museum is in fact the world’s only 17th century preserved war ship and visitors are able to explore it’s six floors. The beauty of this ship has seen it chosen as one of the seven wonders of Sweden. For families, a recommended day trip is to the Grona Lund Amusement Park, think of it like a Scandinavian Thorpe Park!
This is just a snapshot of the wonderful locations and attractions you’ll be introduced to on a Baltic cruise. There really is no better way to see Europe and better yet there are a host of luxurious cruise ships to travel on. Comfort, luxury and picturesque views that will last a lifetime. What more could you need from a holiday?
Scott Cole is a travel writer who wants nothing more than to go on another Baltic cruise. Failing that, he’d quite happily cruise Alaska.