If your ideal holiday includes losing yourself in diverse scenery, exploring iconic architecture and sampling the culinary delights of bustling capital cities, then book yourself on a Baltic cruise. From ornate palaces in St Petersburg to the Little Mermaid in Copenhagen, Marella Explorer will take you on a cultural tour of the best the Baltic has to offer.
* The order of the itinerary may differ depending on your chosen departure date and airport.
Day 1 - Newcastle, England
Your Baltic Discovery itinerary begins in Newcastle, a city full of culture, fun and football. Get here early and spend the day exploring contemporary art galleries like the BALTIC which hosts rotating exhibitions to rival the Tate Modern. For Victorian splendour, go to Saltwell Park with its ornamental gardens and Saltwell Towers mansion house.
Just outside Newcastle is the Angel of the North. This world-famous, 20 meters high sculpture created by Sir Anthony Gormley watches over the city and its inhabitants. Head to Segedunum, the last strong post of Hadrian’s Wall with its Roman bathhouse and museum.
Day 2 - At Sea
Spend the day getting to know your home away from home during day two of your Baltic Discovery cruise on Marella Explorer. A fabulous pool is the centre of daytime activities. The pool bar offers both alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks to keep you hydrated. When you’re feeling peckish, head to the Market Place, a buffet restaurant serving international cuisine next to the pool.
In the evening, dine at Latitude 53 then watch a movie in the indoor cinema.
Day 3 - Oslo, Norway
Time in port: 08:00 - 17:00
Oslo, where the natural beauty of lakes and woodland meets shimmering skyscrapers and modern architecture. It's home to The Vigeland Park, an outdoor art gallery boasting 200 sculptures. You can’t miss the magnificent monolith decorated with 121 human figures.
A walking tour is the way to go if you want to see historic buildings like the old military hospital and Stortorvet Square, home to Oslo Cathedral. En route you’ll also see the Museum of Contemporary Art. Take a trek up to the Royal Castle for some royal views across the city.
Day 4 - Gothenburg, Sweden
Time in port: 07:00 - 14:00
Gothenburg is the next stop on your Baltic Discovery cruise. Grab a Paddan sightseeing boat and cruise the canals. Red-roofed houses and cafés rub shoulders in old shipyards on your way to the harbour. Visit the Masthugg Church, a massive red brick building on top of a hill. You’ll find some exceptional views of the city here.
Stroll down Avenyn Boulevard with its designer boutiques and high-quality restaurants. Then, visit the Museum of Fine Arts and Concert Hall in Gustav Adolph's Square before trying fresh seafood at the indoor fish market.
Day 5 - At Sea
There’s more time to take advantage of the Marella Explorer’s facilities on day five as the ship travels from Sweden to Estonia. Get a sweat on in the gym or take a fitness class. Go to the sports court for a game of basketball or mini-football before heading for the Deck Bar overlooking the pool for a refreshing drink. Afterwards, fuel up on street food style goodies in the Snack Shack.
Have dinner in the Dining Club, a fine-dining establishment with French influences before taking in a show in the Broadway Show Lounge.
Day 6 - Tallinn, Estonia
Time in port: 11:00 - 17:00
Tallinn, the capital of Estonia has been awarded UNESCO World Heritage status thanks to its remarkable architecture. Fairy tale medieval castles with red-topped turrets nestle among leafy parkland, and the winding streets are packed with landmarks like the Tall Hermann Tower. Visit The Alexander Nevsky Cathedral with its multitude of icons and mosaics and the Russian influenced Dome Church with 100 medieval coats of arms.
Stop for a coffee and a cake in a patisserie on Freedom Square before going to Toompea Castle and the Russian Orthodox church in its courtyard.
Day 7-8 - St Petersburg, Russia
Arrives in port: 07:00 (Day 7)
Departs from port: 18:00 (Day 8)
St Petersburg offers the best of art and architecture with its grand palaces and exquisitely designed churches. The Baroque façade and delightful Amber Room of Catherine’s Palace and the gilded rooms of the Winter Palace in Palace Square are essential viewing. Don't miss the Hermitage Museum also in Palace Square. It has a collection of over three million pieces of art on show.
See St Petersburg from a different viewpoint with a guided tour around its canals. You'll pass elegant buildings and ornate bridges as you learn about the history of this unique city.
Day 9 - Helsinki, Finland
Time in port: 08:00 - 17:00
The beauty of the Baltic is everywhere on this cruise and Helsinki, with one of the most beautiful harbours in the world, is no exception. It’s small in size but it's big on charm with pastel painted wooden houses and red riverside warehouses, now home to cafés, museums and restaurants.
Take a tour of the Neoclassical Presidential Palace down on the waterfront. Visit Mannerheim Street and the new Opera House, the white marble of Finlandia Hall and the imposing Parliament House. Walk around Senate Square and St Nicholas Cathedral. For a change of design, visit the Church in the Rock carved into the rock face.
Day 10 - Stockholm, Sweden
Time in port: 10:00 - 18:30
With 14 islands, why not hop on a boat and explore this enchanting city by water? You’ll get a great view of the city’s architecture, parks and squares as you glide around the peaceful waterways.
Grab a Red Line bus tour and get off whenever something takes your fancy. The Royal Opera House and Gamla Stan (the old quarter) are a good bet for culture lovers. If you’re a dancing queen, take a chance on the ABBA Museum before spending your money money money in the shops and boutiques of Drottninggatan.
Day 11 - At Sea
Another day to recharge your batteries onboard Marella Explorer. Relax in one of three hot tubs near the main pool or get competitive with the family in the Gamer Zone.
As the sun goes down, pile the toppings on a pizza in the Mediterranean restaurant. Then finish your evening with some bubbles at the speak-easy style Apéritif bar.
Day 12 - Warnemünde, Germany
Time in port: 07:00 - 19:00
Glorious sandy beaches beckon on your stop in medieval Warnemünde, Germany. Relax on the sand and catch some sun or explore the surrounding countryside on the Molli Railway, a traditional German train.
With artisan shops and small art galleries to explore and canal-side cafés to watch the world go by from, Warnemünde is a little gem in the heart of Germany’s holiday region.
Day 13 - Copenhagen, Denmark
Time in port: 10:00 - 18:00
Time to visit the city that’s given us the oldest monarchy in the world, the Little Mermaid and Sandi Toksvig. Chic Copenhagen is a fusion of history, Michelin stars and fashion. Visit one of the world’s most famous statues, the Little Mermaid in the harbour. Take a trip to the world’s most modern opera house or ride one of the world’s oldest rollercoasters in Tivoli Gardens.
Dine at one of the fashionable restaurants in the Nyhavn district on the waterfront. See where Hans Christian Andersen lived while he wrote his famous fairy tales or pick up a canal tour and watch the sunset over the water.
Day 14 - At Sea
Make the most of your last full day onboard Marella Explorer with a visit to Champneys Spa. Enjoy a body wrap or a massage before chilling in the relaxation room.
Treat yourself to a meal in the gorgeous Kora La, our pan-Asian fine-dining restaurant then dance the night away in Indigo Club or try your luck in the casino.
Day 15 - Newcastle, England
Make your holiday last a little longer with some last-minute sightseeing back in Newcastle. Visit the gothic cathedral with its elaborate clock and domed tower or walk over the Tyne on the Gateshead Millennium Bridge. Check out the life-sized replica of a T-Rex at the Great North Museum of Natural History. Explore the 2.5 mile Victoria Tunnel, accessible from an air raid shelter by Newcastle University. Finally, have a meal along the Quayside for a delicious end to a wonderful trip.