European cruises depart from: Stockholm, Amsterdam, Copenhagen or Southampton
In Europe’s northern reaches, the countries surrounding the Baltic Sea bring wonders both rugged and refined. Mountains and glacial fjords surround Norwegian port towns like Bergen, with its 13th-century fortress, and Tromso, which sits north of the Arctic Circle (while onshore, ride the cable car up Storstein Mountain for jaw-dropping panoramic views).
In Finland, the ship stops in the capital city, Helsinki, which boasts a bustling fish market. Pro tip: When you’re down by the docks, buy a bag of shrimp from incoming fishermen who’ll cook it right on the boats for you to enjoy alfresco. In Denmark, go onshore in Copenhagen and ride a roller coaster at Tivoli, a garden and amusement park that dates to 1843. And in Estonia, explore the remarkably preserved Old Town of Tallinn, founded in 1154.
For a heavy dose of glamour, St. Petersburg embodies the soul of Imperial Russia in the grand cathedrals and opulent palaces that line the city’s canals. Don’t miss a shore excursion to the Hermitage Museum and its 3 million exquisite exhibits.
Sail the Mediterranean