Upcoming Group Trips
Mediterranean Odyssey aboard Viking Sea
After three popular and successful Viking river cruises in Europe (on the Rhine, the Danube and the
Seine), Mind’s Eye Travel offers its first Viking ocean cruise. This will be a 13-day voyage
through the Mediterranean Sea, visiting 10 cities in six countries in the spring of 2017. Viking does a
superb job of immersing its passengers in the culture of their destinations through guided excursions
in each port, as well as lectures or performances of music, art, cooking, dance and history. And, as
always, Mind’s Eye Travel will provide its customized services and sighted guides as needed.
We will sail aboard the ultramodern Viking Sea, whose maiden voyage was in April 2016. Viking Sea
takes just 930 passengers (less than a third of most cruise liners’ complements) yet is 745 feet long
with 10 decks, so she is relaxed and uncrowded. Among other features, the ship has two swimming
pools, several restaurants and lounges—including the Wintergarden, Mamsen’s and the Explorer’s
Lounge, the Aquavit Terrace and a World Café—plus a spa and gym, a library, sports deck, salon,
theatre and shops. Viking’s ocean-going vessels have been called the world’s best new cruise ships.
Day 1 (Sunday, March 5, 2017) — Arrive in Spain
We’ll board Viking Sea in Barcelona, where we’ll spend the night and the next day. This provides
ample time to settle in and relax, and also to explore this ancient capital of Catalonia, a world center
of culture, architecture and trade. Highlights include the Columbus Monument, the Arc de Triomf, the
Olympic Port built for the 1992 Olympic Games and the Passeig de Gràcia, a street renowned for its
shops and buildings, including works by Antoni Gaudí. We may combine our own ramblings with
ship’s tours such as a performance of flamenco dancing over a meal of traditional Spanish tapas.
Day 2 — Barcelona
Awake aboard ship and dig deeper into the wonders of Barcelona, where the ancient and the modern
sit side-by-side. We might start on Las Ramblas, the leafy, mile-long pedestrian boulevard, and then
take a leisurely stroll through the myriad side streets of the Gothic Quarter, or choose one of the
many available Viking tours. Tonight we sail to France.
Day 3 — Toulon, France
Toulon, the seaport of the Napoleonic Wars, is the gateway to Provence, the fabled French
countryside of wines, cheeses and olives. We’ll have a day to walk the narrow streets and lovely
squares of the city’s Old Quarter. We may pass through the Place de la Liberté and the Place Puget,
visit the Gothic cathedral and browse the colorful market of Cours Lafayette. You may prefer to visit
the coastal towns of Aix-en-Provence or Cassis, and the dramatic sea cliffs of Cap Canaille. If you
catch a whiff of lavender or the scent of bouillabaisse from a nearby café, stop and indulge yourself!
Day 4 — Monte Carlo
Today we’ll wake up in Monaco, the playground of the rich and famous that lies within the beautiful
South of France. Visit medieval Monte Carlo, stopping at the Prince’s Palace and St. Nicholas
Cathedral, the burial site of Monaco’s royal family, including America’s Princess, Grace Kelly.
Perhaps you’ll venture out of town to the celebrated perfumeries in Grasse, or stroll along the English
promenade in glamorous Nice. Our ship will stay late in port, so we will also have time to step inside
the Casino de Monte-Carlo, the legendary gambling mecca frequented by James Bond.
Day 5 — Tuscany, Italy
Immerse yourself in the beauty of Tuscany with a visit to the medieval city of Pisa, including the
Square of Miracles with the famous Leaning Tower, the Cathedral and the Baptistery. Or take a full-
day tour that combines both Pisa and Florence, beginning with a scenic drive through the countryside
and then the Basilica di Santa Maria del Fiore, the Ponte Vecchio and the Basilica of Santa Croce,
the resting place of Michelangelo. Tonight we’re onward bound to Rome!
Day 6 — Rome
We’ll explore the Eternal City and its classical treasures with a local guide. We’ll marvel at the
magnificent Coliseum, where gladiators once fought for the crowds, and the historic Forum, the
gathering place and political center of ancient Rome, and of course Vatican City. Or choose one of
the fascinating tours that visits Tarquinia’s Etruscan necropolis or the excavated port town of Ostia.
Day 7 — Naples
Take in magnificent examples of Greek and Roman architecture and the Piazza del Plebiscito, the
grand public square at the former royal palace. Or visit Herculaneum, buried and preserved by
volcanic ash, drive along the stunning Amalfi Coast, or climb to the top of Mt. Vesuvius. Don’t forget
to sample the espresso, the pizza (the world’s first pizzeria opened here in 1830) and the limoncello.
Day 8 — Crossing the Ionian Sea
Bask all day in Viking Sea‘s comforts. Swim in the infinity pool, with its dramatic ocean views. Relax
with a massage or skin treatment at the Scandinavian-style spa, or learn to make the perfect risotto
during a cooking class at The Kitchen Table. Or just relax on your veranda while passing the
“Lighthouse of the Mediterranean,” the volcano of Stromboli. That’s Greece on the horizon.
Day 9 — Corfu, Greece
We’ll spend today on the romantic island of Corfu, resplendent with charming pastel townhouses and
pristine white beaches. Our tour takes us to Kanoni, where we will make a photo stop at tiny Mouse
Island and the Vlacherna Monastery. Following the coastline through Garitsa Bay will take us to the
UNESCO Site of the Old Town. There we’ll see the famous Esplanade, one of Europe’s largest public
squares, and the Liston Promenade, once the exclusive preserve of the local aristocracy.
Day 10 — Dubrovnik, Croatia
George Bernard Shaw declared, “Those who seek paradise on earth should come to Dubrovnik”—
Croatia’s beautiful 12th-century walled city. Our options include a drive to see the magnificent views
of the city, sea and countryside, then entering the city on foot through the historic Pile Gate to the
Sponza Palace, the Onofrio Fountain and the Dominican Monastery with its Renaissance paintings.
Or we may explore the famed Dubrovnik Riviera on a day cruise along the Lapad Peninsula.
Day 11 — Splît, Croatia
The Age of Antiquity seems still alive in this city that was built around the Roman Emperor
Diocletian’s vast palace. The historic quarter is the result of more than 17 centuries of construction,
including pre-Romanesque churches and Gothic chapels. Or choose a rafting excursion on the Cetina
River, a drive through the countryside to the famous waterfalls of Krka National Park, or a day of
discovering smaller, more intimate attractions along the Dalmatian coast.
Day 12 — Venice
The ultimate destination on our epic voyage is the magical canal city of Venice, renowned for its art,
architecture and culture. Watch it take form as Viking Sea eases her way into the lagoon. Enjoy the
panoramic view toward magnificent St. Mark’s Square on our tour, and with our guide we’ll admire the
glorious façade of the Doge’s Palace and the ornate interior of Saint Mark’s Basilica. Or take a boat
taxi to the island of Murano to see glassmakers working in their centuries-old trade. Tonight we stay
in port so you may enjoy a fine restaurant, the vibrant nightlife and perhaps a romantic evening
gondola ride along the Grand Canal.
Day 13 (Friday, March 17, 2017) — Venice
Awake in Venice, where we will depart the ship. You may of course choose to spend a few extra days
here, to further explore this unique city or other parts of Italy, before returning home.
Deluxe Veranda $5,990 per person, double occupancy*
Deluxe Veranda passengers may board ship at 11:00 AM on Sunday, March 5, 2017, and their staterooms will
be available by 2:00 PM. In addition, they have priority on shore-excursion reservations up to 67 days before
sailing, and are guaranteed at least one priority reservation at each specialty restaurant (to be made 60 days
prior to departure). A description of Deluxe Veranda rooms, furnishings and benefits is below.
Penthouse Veranda $7,490 per person, double occupancy**
Penthouse Veranda passengers may board ship at 11:00 AM on Sunday, March 5, 2017, and their staterooms
will be available by 1:00 PM. In addition, they have priority on shore-excursion reservations up to 77 days
before sailing, and are guaranteed at least two priority reservations at each specialty restaurant (to be made 70
days prior to departure). A description of Penthouse Veranda rooms, furnishings and benefits is below.
Mind’s Eye will provide sighted guides. If you travel with a sighted friend or family member, a $500
discount is applied to you and your cabin mate’s fare.
• A $750 deposit per person is required to hold space; balances are due by December 10, 2016.
• There is a cancellation fee of $100.
• Prices are based on double occupancy and do not include airfares, personal items, gratuities or,
except as noted below, alcoholic beverages.
Please note that Viking cruises are not only very comfortable, but also excellent value. In
addition to the deluxe veranda or penthouse staterooms, these all-in prices include 10 shore
excursions; all onboard meals with wine, beer or soft drinks; coffee, tea and room service available
around the clock; free Wi-Fi; any restaurant reservation fees, and all port charges and taxes. These
often amount to more than $350 per couple per day of added value compared to other cruise lines.
* Deluxe Veranda staterooms measure 270 square feet (with veranda) and include a king-size
Viking Explorer bed with luxury linens • luxury robes, slippers & toiletries • mini-bar with soft drinks,
water & snacks, replenished once daily • binoculars, coffee maker & cashmere blanket • direct-dial
satellite phone & cell service • security safe, hair dryer, 110/220 volt outlets • free Wi-Fi • large flat-
screen LCD TV • Interactive TV & movies on demand • 24-hour room service.
** Penthouse Veranda staterooms are 338 square feet (with the veranda) and include a king-size
Viking Explorer bed with luxury linens • luxury robes, slippers & toiletries • mini-bar with alcoholic
beverages, soft drinks, water & snacks, replenished once daily • binoculars, coffee maker &
cashmere blanket • direct-dial satellite phone & cell service • security safe, hair dryer, 110/220 volt
outlets • free Wi-Fi • large flat-screen LCD TV • Interactive TV & movies on demand • 24-hour room
service • shoe shining and clothes pressing • bottle of Champagne.