Baltic Cruises – Scenic Beauty and Rich History

A Baltic Cruise is a wonderful way to experience Scandinavia and the countries bordering the Baltic Sea. The Baltic region extends from the Swedish and Finnish coast known as the Gulf of Bothnia, into the Gulf of Finland bordering Russia with its beautiful port of St. Petersburg and Estonia and Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Germany and Denmark.

The area is packed full of history dating back to the time of the Vikings.  Buildings with tall spires and painted in glorious colours surround the shores lined with fishing boats and inland the medieval streets with their wide open squares, cafes and bars create a wonderful atmosphere.

There are many companies that cruise the Baltic Sea with ships ranging from intimate yachts to some of the largest ‘super liners’.  Some of these ships offer a formal atmosphere, some more relaxed, so whatever your preference and whichever nationality you like to mix with, there will always be a good choice available.  Baltic cruises operate between during the spring and summer months, May to September and just like British weather there are no guarantees as to whether there will be beautiful sunshine or wind and rain, but the destinations on a Baltic cruise are so beautiful that not even bad weather can put you off.

Most cruises take in the more popular ports of call but itineraries do vary with trips lasting from a week to up to 18 nights. Here are just a few of the highlights and some of the more interesting ports to visit.

Cruise to the Baltic Cities

St. Petersburg is probably the most popular port with some ships ‘overnighting’ in the port to allow guests two days in the beautiful Russian city.  Tours of the city are advised for those visiting for the first time as there is so much to see and do.  Top of the list is ‘The Hermitage’, home to the greatest art and sculpture collection in the world with pieces from Rembrandt, Matisse and Leonardo da Vinci.  An evening visit to the ballet or opera is also a very memorable event.

Copenhagen is a charming Danish city easily explored on foot.  It’s just a short walk along the harbour front to reach the famous ‘Little Mermaid’ sculpture in commemoration of Hans Christian Anderson.  Explore the cobbled streets with their pastry shops and stop by the canal with views over to the Christianborg Palace and perhaps a canal boat ride.

Helsinki, the capital of Finland, is a compact city and the historical centre is easy to get around.  Visitors can visit the central square with its Cathedral and the nearby Rock Church with its copper dome carved from solid rock.

One of Norway’s sunniest spots, Kristiansand, offers not only a vintage railway from the last century but the opportunity to visit one of the largest open air museums in the country with 30 traditional buildings, including farmhouses and fisherman’s cottages, which have been reconstructed.

Perhaps one of the most beautiful of the Baltic cities is Stockholm.  The city is reached through a passage of small islands and is always lush and green; its medieval quarter in the centre is reached through narrow streets and is home to the picturesque gothic cathedral.

The Baltic is a beautiful, historic area offering countryside and nature, beautiful buildings and a choice of ports each with their very own personalities, making it simply one of the best European cruise regions.

Related posts:

  1. Viking Line: Ferry Transport around the Baltic and Scandinavia
  2. Mediterranean Cruise – Top Ports
  3. Danube River Cruise – Europe’s Second Longest River
  4. Rhine River Cruises from Amsterdam to Zurich
  5. Russian River Cruises – Volga, Svir, Neva

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