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A World Affairs Cruise in the Baltic

9 days with Ponant   Rating: Deluxe

Itinerary
Click for Dates and Prices
DAY 1 STOCKHOLM
The capital of Sweden occupies an archipelago in the east of the country at the junction of Mälar Lake and the Baltic sea. In Gamla stan, meaning “old town” in Swedish, you can stroll at your leisure in picturesque medieval streets until you reach the majestic Royal Palace. On the green island of Djurgården, you can visit several very different kinds of cultural centres: the Vasa museum is dedicated to a 17th century three-mast, the ecomuseum of Skansen presents traditional customs, and the ABBA museum is dedicated to the legendary pop group. For a fantastic, all-encompassing view of Stockholm, you can take a ride in SkyView, a glass-encased sphere gondola that takes you to the top of the world’s largest building, the Ericsson Globe, a Stockholm landmark.
 
DAY 2 HELSINKI
Seated in the southern peninsula of Finland, Helsinki offers the buzz of a cosmopolitan city that has opted for both elegance and beauty. Explore its historical centre where the soft hues of neoclassical buildings are juxtaposed with spectacular modern constructions. The bustling Kallio district is teeming with boutiques and restaurants where you can taste some local specialities like graavilohi - a sweet, marinated, aromatic salmon dish. Keskuspuisto park, a stone’s throw from the centre, is a good place to sit and unwind.
 
DAYS 3-4 SAINT PETERSBURG
Founded in 1703 by Tzar Peter the Great, Saint Petersburg has kept its original aura and is still one of the world’s most beautiful cities. It is listed as a UNESCO world heritage site. Bathed by the waters of the Neva, the “Venice of the North” boasts an impressive wealth of historic and artistic features. From the emblematic Nevsky Propect, the city’s main thoroughfare, exploring the city by foot is a pleasure. With its baroque cathedrals, imperial palaces, suspended bridges, theatres and museums, Saint Petersburg is a jewel of a city.
 
DAY 5 TALLINN
Opening onto the Baltic sea, to the far north of Estonia, the town of Tallin will win you over with the picturesque charm of its architecture. You can meander through its little streets in the heart of the medieval centre where its gothic town hall has been standing since 1404. The Kiek in de Kök tower, the Orthodox Alexander Nevski cathedral, or Toompea castle give visitors a taste of this town’s rich past. The city was particularly active during the medieval period, as is demonstrated by the very beautiful monuments from this period that are still visible. Don't hesitate to lose yourself in the heart of Tallinn, listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
 
DAY 6 VISBY, GOTLAND
This old Hanseatic city lies to the west coast of Gotland, a Swedish island in the Baltic sea. Pass through the spectacular Visby fortifications and visit the old town, a UNESCO World Heritage site. You’ll discover the grand Visby homes of rich merchants as well as the lovely low wooden houses in the little cobbled streets. Don’t miss Saint Mary’s cathedral with its octagonal steeples, as well as Powder tower along the fortifications. Make sure you stop over in one of the rose-adorned cafés; indeed roses abound in this town where you can taste one of the island’s specialities, namely saffron pancakes with red fruit.
 
DAY 7 AT SEA
During your day at sea, make the most of the many services and activities on board. Treat yourself to a moment of relaxation in the spa or stay in shape in the fitness centre. Depending on the season, let yourself be tempted by the swimming pool or a spot of sunbathing. This day without a port of call will also be an opportunity to enjoy the conferences or shows proposed on board, to do some shopping in the boutique or to meet the PONANT photographers in their dedicated space. As for lovers of the open sea, they will be able to visit the ship’s upper deck to admire the spectacle of the waves and perhaps be lucky enough to observe marine species. A truly enchanted interlude, combining comfort, rest and entertainment.
 
DAY 8 SZCZECIN
Situated some 60 km away from the Baltic Sea, the city of Szczecin (Stettin in German) in West Pomerania is a major seaport and deep-water harbour that benefits from the protective environment of the Uznam and Wolin islands. The Art Nouveau architecture gives the capital of the Duchy of Pomerania a certain charm. For centuries, the routes linking Western Europe to Eastern Europe and Scandinavia to Southern Europe have crossed here. You will enjoy strolling through the city’s many green spaces, through Kasprowicza Park or along the ramparts of Boleslaw I the Brave and their superb panoramic terraces.
 
DAY 9 COPENHAGEN
Connected to the far eastern side of Sealand island, a few kilometres away from the Swedish coasts, Copenhagen offers you the high colour of Scandinavian capitals. You can discover the city's riches that weaves through the canal networks through the historical districts of Christiansborg and Nyhavn. Many palaces provide an apercu of Danish history. For eating, you can try out the smorebrod, a traditional dish composed of several kinds of smoked fish.
Map
All This Included
Quintessential Collection included cruise package

Created specially for like-minded travelers. 

Featuring lectures and discussions with former Supreme Allied Commander of NATO Admiral James Stavridis, former Ambassador to Russia and current President of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace William Burns, and journalist and author Robin Wright, this voyage offers an extraordinary opportunity to talk with these leading thinkers and actors on the world stage about the current state of U.S. relations with the wider world.

The Baltic Sea has been a thoroughfare of trade since the days of the Vikings. We will visit the great cities that ring its shores and experience a comingling of cosmopolitan life with centuries of rich history. Two full days are spent in St. Petersburg—arguably the most magnificent city on the Baltic where virtually the entire city is designated a UNESCO World Heritage site. Stockholm offers a chance to see the stunning Royal Palace and to visit the Vasa Museum, which features the 17th-century Vasa warship, rescued from the bottom of the sea after 333 years and lovingly restored. Helsinki is internationally recognized for its striking modern architecture, while Tallinn is one of the best-preserved medieval towns in all of Europe. On Gotland—the largest island in the Baltic Sea—an included walking tour of the beautifully preserved medieval town of Visby, once a stronghold of the Hanseatic League, is followed by a specially arranged private choral performance at the St. Clemens Church Ruin and a reception with canapes and sparkling wines. Szczecin, a city nearly destroyed during World War II, is home to the Castle of the Dukes of Pomerania, which was completely rebuilt and its interior restored following the war as a testament to the city’s resilience. 
  • Port and safety charges
  • Open bar
  • Gratuities
  • Your cruise including all meals from dinner on the day of embarkation to breakfast on the day of disembarkation
  • Welcome aboard and captain’s cocktail parties, gala dinner
  • Mineral water, tea, filter coffee, white, red and rosé wines served with meals
  • 24 hour room service (selected menu)
  • Evening entertainments and events, and/or organised shows
  • Porterage from the quayside to the ship and vice versa
  • English-speaking guest-speaker (when applicable
Highlights
Our World Affairs programs provide expert insight into contemporary issues that affect our lives and the lives of our children and grandchildren. These voyages are accompanied by men and women—journalists, ambassadors and generals—who have shaped the modern world through their words and deeds. As we travel into the past and engage with its legacy, we will also attend to the present, engaging with our guest experts on the current state of international relations and on the prospects for the future.

For this Baltic program in August 2020, we have assembled a team of lecturers deeply involved in the contemporary world as commentators and critics and as actors on the main stage.
  • Admiral James Stavridis, former Supreme Allied Commander of NATO and now a global security analyst for NBC News
  • Ambassador William Burns, former Ambassador to Russia (2005 – 2008) and current President of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
  • Robin Wright, staff writer for the New Yorker and author of more than half a dozen award winning books on international security matters
Accommodations
Cruising: Cabin onboard Le Dumont-d'Urville
Notes
  • Cabin upgrades are available.
  • Fares may be subject to a fuel adjustment.
  • Please ask your Vacations To Go travel counselor for more information.
Terms and Conditions
For Ponant terms and conditions, please click here.

* The prices shown are U.S. dollars per person, based on double occupancy, and subject to availability. Prices quoted for land/cruise arrangements are subject to increase without notice. Once we have received your deposit, land/cruise prices are guaranteed. Air prices quoted via phone or email are subject to increase and are guaranteed only from the time that full payment is received. Also, air prices or air promotions mentioned on this site or on the phone do not include baggage fees imposed by airlines.