The Baltic Sea washes the shores of Denmark, Sweden, Finland, Russia and Estonia, making it one of the most dynamic regions in the world. As your Baltic Cruise adventure takes you from the heritage of Viking warriors to the splendor of the imperial Russian Czars, you will have an opportunity to explore the sights and sounds of some of the most alluring and vibrant capital cities in the world.
A Baltic Sea Cruise may start in Copenhagen, one of Europe’s oldest capitals with a royal touch--the monarchy in Denmark is the oldest in the world. Discover the city, mirrored in the walls of Black Diamond, the new wing of the Royal Library, clad in Absolute Black granite, mined in Zimbabwe, and cut and polished in Northern Italy. It is located right by the waterfront of Copenhagen harbor. Explore the Royal Castle Amalienborg, and the Church of Our Savior with its golden staircase and golden spire. Take a walk towards the Gefion Fountain, and see how the Little Mermaid is doing.
As your Baltic Sea Cruise pulls into the harbor at Stockholm, you will immediately take notice of a royal city with lots of historic charm. Known as the “Nordic Venice,” it sits where Lake Malaren meets the Baltic Sea, and is situated on no less than 14 islands, connected to each other by more than 60 bridges. You can visit Gamia Stan, Stockholm’s oldest attraction and one of the best preserved medieval city centers in the world. Walk the winding streets lined with stores full of handicrafts, antiques and art galleries, and of course stop at a restaurant that is offering a daily “smorgasbord,” the ultimate Swedish dining delight.
Along your Baltic Sea cruise route, you will stop in Tallin, capital of the independent republic of Estonia. The city’s ancient town walls, old churches, graceful steeples, twisty cobblestone streets, red tiled roofs and imposing towers reveal German, Swedish and Russian architectural influences.
Your Baltic Cruise experience will be brightened in St. Petersburg during the summer months by the phenomenon known as the “White Nights,” where you can wander the city’s friendly and romantic streets in almost broad daylight, no matter what the time of day. But St. Petersburg is mostly known for the grandeur of its royal palaces from the baroque Catherine Palace where Empress Catherine the Great lived and died, to the Aleksandrovsky Palace, the favored home of the last Russian Tsar Nicholas ll.
Helsinki is a modern European city of culture that is famous especially for its design and high technology. It is a pocket size metropolis that is especially ideal for visitors. Most of Helsinki’s tourist attractions are situated within easy walking distance of the city center, and if your feet do get tired, you can rely on Helsinki’s excellent public transportation-which is ranked the best in Europe. The brilliant white cathedral known in Finnish as Tuomiokirkko is the symbol of Helsinki. The cathedral can be best admired on a sunny day when the bright light reflecting off its chalk-white walls creates a mirage-like effect.
Warnemunde is a small German beach town that has become a favorite stop for Baltic Sea cruises. It is an easy walk from the docks past the train station into the center of town, where you will find a canal lined with shops and restaurants. From there, you are only several blocks from the beach or from further exploring the town. The merchants speak fluent English and are friendly. Stroll through the shops, walk to the beach, and even walk through the back streets to see the "real" Warnemunde away from the tourist areas. It's also a short trip to Rostock by train, or by tour bus. Rostock was founded in 1218 and features some grand old architecture.