Have you been dreaming of a Mediterranean cruise holiday? From home to sparkling turquoise water, magnificent stretches of coastline, and vibrant cities full of incredible art, culture, and history, the Mediterranean is one of the world’s most popular cruise holiday destinations.
You’re spoiled for choice in this region, with dozens of cruise lines operating. From luxury cruise lines to contemporary mega ships, there’s a cruise to suit every traveller. Today, we’re putting the spotlight on premium cruise lines.
Premium cruise lines offer superior accommodation, entertainment, dining, activities, and excursions at a price point just below the luxury cruise lines of the Mediterranean. Here are six of the most popular premium cruise lines that cruise the Mediterranean.
1. Oceania Cruises
The sister line to the luxurious Regent Seven Seas Cruises, Oceania Cruises ships continue the family theme of being upscale, intimate, and classically-styled. The ships are mid sized, allowing you to cruise without the crowds or queues of the mega-ships. They offer plenty of opportunities to socialise, but also lots of quiet spaces to retreat with a good book (for ultimate relaxation, don’t skip the day spa!).
If it’s elegance you’re looking for, you’ll love Ponant. The French cruise line epitomises the style, cuisine, and elegance the French are famous for. You can expect exceptional food, 5-star service, fashionable decor, and luxury at every turn.
Highlights include onboard wine tasting, complimentary wine with lunch and dinner, and the best French cheese platters you’ll find at sea. The afternoon tea of sweet treats from Laduree (the famous French bakery) will transport you straight to Paris no matter where you are.
All the accommodation is comfortable and well-appointed. You’ll love the chic bath and spa products in your bathroom and, of course, the stylish interior design. As for destinations, Ponant travels to all the best ports in the Mediterranean, with a wide range of itineraries to choose from.
Sophisticated, delightful, carefully curated – these are just some of the words used to describe ‘The Cunard Experience’. From elegant fine dining (formal dress code required) to British afternoon tea served by white-gloved waiters, life on board a Cunard cruise ship is special and glamorous.
Spend your days relaxing onboard or enjoying one of the many shore excursions available, then dress up for dinner, dancing, and shows at night. Cunard keeps it casual before 6 pm, but once the evening begins the cruise ship really comes to life. You’ll love the exceptional service and variety of onboard entertainment. This ship is spacious enough to host a masquerade ball and intimate enough for special, personal moments.
4. Holland America
If it’s classic, traditional cruising you’re after, Holland America is the cruise line for you. This premium cruise line has been in business for over 140 years. Fun fact: Holland America Line (originally name the Netherlands-America Steamship Company) actually started as a transatlantic passenger trade and commercial freight shipping company, but was reimagined into the dream cruise experience that is today.
Now, Holland America has perfected their travel, ensuring guests receive nothing but top-of-the-line service and lush accommodation. When you're not enjoying the shore excursions, enjoy five-star dining and entertainment. This cruise offers distinctly modern features such as digital workshops and Culinary Arts Center cooking demonstrations.
5. Azamara Club Cruises
The Azamara Club Cruises tagline is ‘Explore Further’ – and this is exactly what this premium cruise line will help you do. Azamara offers overnight stays at select destinations and docks at many smaller, less-travelled ports. Azamara is all about helping you see more of the Mediterranean while enjoying all the comfort and convenience that cruising offers.
Azamara’s commitment to ‘Explore Further’ runs deep through every part of the cruising experience, from immersive shore excursions to worldly cuisine. You’ll love this cruise line’s diverse itineraries, exceptional service, and premium accommodation. This is one for travellers who want to fully and deeply explore their destination.
6. Celebrity Cruises
Classic, elegant, and just the right amount of flashy – Celebrity Cruises is one of the world’s most popular cruise lines, and for good reason. The line is proud of its reputation across all aspects of the cruise experience, from superior design to exceptional service to delicious cuisine.
One area where Celebrity excels is onboard shopping. Snap up high-end brands and bring home gifts worth gushing about. You’ll also love Celebrity’s onboard restaurants, bars, and of course, their super comfortable poolside cabanas.
How to choose the perfect cruise
With so many premium cruise lines available, how do you know which one you’ll love the most? Contact us to get our expert opinion or check out Why you should choose a cruise for your next holiday.