New perspectives so close at hand: volcanic beauty, magnificent seafaring history and flourishing nature reveal surprising facets of Europe in May.
Scheduled flight from Germany to Lisbon
Overnight stay with breakfast
Scheduled flight to Ponta Delgada/Sao Miguel/Azores
Ponta Delgada/Sao Miguel/Azores, departure 18.00 hrs
Azores (Faial, Pico , Terceira )
When spring revitalises coastlines, this cruise transforms the Azores, the Channel Islands and Helgoland into fascinating new territory. Welcome to Faial, home to whales and marine biologists. Horta's harbour is steeped in the stories of people who have circumnavigated the globe, and who meet in Peter Cafe Sport. Listen to their tales of the high seas or try the Atlantic's best gin and tonic. Share the passion of volcanologists on a scenic tour to the Capelinhos volcano* or a hike around the Faial Caldera*. Deep-black rocks, rugged volcanic cones and Portugal's highest mountain: Pico continues the overwhelming sights. A beautiful journey across the crater island* presents you with bizarre rock formations and lava fields. Discover how the nutritious volcanic soil brings the grapevines to life when you explore Pico's vineyards on foot*. The grapes grow in labyrinths of small stone walls. The creative power of the earth's core also becomes apparent on Terceira. Explore the island in a jeep* and marvel at lava formations, natural swimming pools and the interior of a volcanic cave. On a city walk through Angra do Heroismo*, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, attractive white houses, a cathedral and a palace tell of the times when the city was an intermediate stop for overseas trade.
Relaxation at sea
Leixoes (Porto), from 8.00 to 18.00 hrs
The HANSEATIC spirit follows in the footsteps of the pioneering seafarers of old when it heads for the Portuguese mainland. Porto is like an open-air museum of the baroque. Take a nostalgic tram ride in the old town* or explore at your own pace - fall in love with this port city over and over again. Or do the Middle Ages make your heart beat faster? If so, historic Guimaraes* is perfect for you, with a majestic castle, opulent palace rooms and town houses.
Relaxation at sea
Douarnenez/France, from 8.00 to 18.00 hrs
Douarnenez, a new cruise destination, is closely linked with the development of the sardine industry. From here, explore the capital of art, history and legends: take a city walk of Quimper* through streets lined with half-timbered houses and embark on an architectural journey through time - rounded off with the 13th-century Gothic Cathedral of Saint Corentin. Mighty granite rock faces and heathland set the scene for a walk on Cap Sizun*.
Channel Islands/Great Britain (Jersey, Guernsey, Sark, Alderney)
Plenty of time has been scheduled for the unknown territory of the Channel Islands: three days, four islands - a blend of wild and romantic landscapes, aristocratic charm and blossoming glory. On Jersey, go for a coastal walk* and enjoy the Mediterranean atmosphere of the picturesque bays. A visit to Mont Orgueil Castle* will show that very few castles have been constructed so strategically: built on the cliff tops, surrounded by cliffs, overlooking the fishing village of Gorey. Guernsey's nature inspired Renoir. The gardens around Saint Peter Port* would be the perfect subject for an impressionist painting. The vintage flair on Guernsey* bus tour shows how the mild climate of the Gulf Stream allows a diverse range of splendid and exotic plants to bloom. La Seigneurie is one of the finest gardens in the Channel Islands. This paradise is designed around an 18th-century manor house, and you can explore it at your own pace on the little rocky island of Sark. The rich flora and fauna on Alderney also paint unforgettable pictures. A hike along the west coast* will allow you to cast your gaze over cliffs, bays and the nesting places of thousands of northern gannets. Alternatively, take a bicycle tour of the island* to revive your body and soul. Your destination: a lighthouse dating from 1912.
Relaxation at sea
The red sandstone of a North Sea beauty also sends a strong signal: Helgoland. Many people tend to forget about it, but for the HANSEATIC spirit, this is a truly fascinating destination. Take the time to walk around Germany's island gem. Lange Anna, a natural landmark, adds a final exclamation point to this special cruise bursting with contrasts.
Hamburg, arrival 7.00 hrs
Individual travel arrangements from cruise arrival point
* The shore activities are not included in the cruise price and are in the planning stage. Subject to change.
The itinerary depends on the weather conditions. The described natural experiences and animal sightings are possibilities on these expeditions and are not guaranteed.
The following programmes can be booked.
Please note that our pre- and post-cruise programmes are conducted in German and are charged additionally to the travel package. The prices and conditions for these programmes can be found on the German travel details page and are charged additionally to the travel package. For individual programmes kindly consult your travel agent.
The following programmes are offered in German:
Our popular pre- and post-cruise programmes include a broad spectrum of excursions and are usually accompanied by experienced Hapag-Lloyd Cruises tour guides. Recommended for guests who like to share their experiences with a group of like-minded travellers. Explore specially selected highlights of your holiday destination and enjoy the convenience of group travel – we will take care of the transfers, excursions and overnight stays.
Our travel concierge would be happy to put together travel arrangements tailored to your very own preferences. Whether you’re interested in boutique hotels, luxurious beach resorts, theatre-ticket reservations or restaurant recommendations in the most exciting cities, you can find exclusive tips here and by visiting www.hl-cruises.com/travel-concierge. Our travel concierge will be at your service before the cruise and when on board, of course.