​Romantic Italy in spring aboard the world’s most luxurious cruise ship

View from Accademia Bridge on Grand Canal in Venice
View from Accademia Bridge on Grand Canal in Venice
View from Accademia Bridge on Grand Canal in Venice

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Cruise Express has released a new cruise tour in Italy and the Adriatic including a week aboard the new, five-star Seven Seas Explorer, billed as the most luxurious cruise ship ever built.

The spacious, 750-passenger ship from Regent Seven Seas Cruises was christened in Monte Carlo last month by Princess Charlene of Monaco and boasts one of the cruise industry’s highest crew-to-guest ratios, with one crew member for every 1.4 passengers. Every cabin is a suite with a large, private balcony and all guests enjoy unlimited, complimentary beverages, shore excursions, mini-bar and Wi-Fi.

Australians keen to sample the acclaimed indulgences aboard Seven Seas Explorer can join Cruise Express’ new, 22-night Italian and Adriatic Indulgence cruise tour departing Australia on 17 April 2017, and starting and ending in the romantic city of Venice.

After a private boat transfer on the city’s famous canals to a deluxe hotel for the first night, guests the next day board the plush, A$600 million Seven Seas Explorer for a seven-night cruise from Venice to Rome. The ship will call at six ports – Urbino on Italy’s east coast, the walled city of Dubrovnik in Croatia, fjord-lined Kotor in Montenegro, Corfu in Greece, Taormina in Sicily and Sorrento on Italy’s spectacular Amalfi Coast. Up to 31 included, guided shore excursions are available during the cruise and meals in the ship’s gourmet specialty restaurants are also complimentary.

Disembarking in Rome, guests will spend a night in the Eternal City at the start of a guided, 11-night,small group tour back to Venice via Umbria, Tuscany, the Italian Riviera and the beautiful Italian Lakes District. Destinations on the overland tour include the medieval towns of Assisi, Perugia and Siena, the Leaning Tower in Pisa, Juliet’s balcony in Verona, the Renaissance drawcards for Florence, the world-famous, cliff-hugging villages of the Cinque Terre and the terraced gardens and aristocratic villas of enchanting Lake Maggiore in northern Italy.

A highlight of the tour is a two-day stay in an authentic Tuscan villa, where guests will join a local chef in preparing and eating a classic and rustic Italian lunch. The villa is surrounded by a novel-like, Tuscan landscape of olive groves, vineyards and golden-hued villages. The itinerary also includes a truffle hunt led by a local farmer in the Piedmont region in the foothills of the Italian Alps. The tour ends with a farewell dinner and night back in Venice before the return flight to Australia.

Including return flights to Venice with Emirates, the seven-night all-inclusive cruise, 11-night overland tour and extra pre and post cruise nights in Venice and Rome, the 22-night luxury cruise tour is available from $14,495 per person, twin-share, from Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane and $14,199 person, twin-share, from Adelaide and Perth.

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