Palma Cathedral, Palma, Majorca
Rocky coast, Propriano, Corsica
Siena Cathedral, Siena, Italy
Sail into the sunshine and uncover the hidden gems of the western Mediterranean on Marella Dream. From the architectural wonders of the historic quarter of Palma, Majorca, to the designer boutiques on the peninsula of Italy’s Portofino, there’s plenty to do for the whole family.
* The order of the itinerary may differ depending on your chosen departure date and airport.
Day 1 - Palma, Majorca
A 10pm departure for your Hidden Gems cruise leaves plenty of time for sightseeing if your flight gets in early enough. It's about 25 minutes from the airport to the port.
Get your walking shoes on and hit the historic streets of Majorca’s capital city. First stop, the Gothic cathedral, La Seu. Go in the morning if you can to see the light streaming through its stained glass windows. Next door is the L’Almudaina Palace, the king’s official residence, with its pretty gardens. Grab a bite to eat in trendy Santa Catalina before heading back to the ship.
Day 2 - At Sea
Spend day two of your Hidden Gems cruise exploring Marella Dream. Have some family fun in one of the three pools onboard. Or, pop the kiddies in Kids’ Club for some arts-and-crafts fun while you hit the gym before pampering yourself in Oceans Spa.
Enjoy lunch in the Lido restaurant where you can help yourself to everything from salad to pizza. Then, relax in Browser’s Corner with a book or challenge your fellow travellers to a board game. When the sun sets, put your glad rags on and enjoy some fine dining in Mistral’s before hitting the casino for cocktails and cards.
Day 3 - Propriano, Corsica
Time in port: 08:00–17:00
Visit the mountainous island of Corsica on this stop in unspoilt Propriano. The port is a stone's throw from town, and the main street runs around the marina, so you can be in a restaurant eating the best seafood the place has to offer in minutes. Head to the harbour to don your scuba mask and go diving around the reef or swim in azure waters at Plage du Corsaire.
If you want to venture further afield, book a tour to Sartène. Enjoy wandering the cobbled alleyways of this medieval fortified town and seeing landmarks such as the Spina Cavallu Bridge.
Day 4 - Piombino (for Siena and Pisa), Italy
Time in port: 07:00–19:00
Day four of your Hidden Gems cruise finds you in Piombino, on the Etruscan Coast. With medieval and Renaissance influences visible in its historic centre, there’s plenty to do in the city. Visit the Sienese Gothic-style Cathedral of Sant’antimo and its mosaic of the Archangel Michael, or the largest coastal piazza in Europe, Piazza Bovio.
From Piombino, you can also easily get to the iconic leaning tower on an excursion to Pisa. You’ll go to Campo dei Miracoli (Miracle Square), take the obligatory selfie with the tower, then tour the nearby Baptistery and cathedral.
Or, how about a day trip to medieval Siena? Your guide will show you the Gothic city. You’ll see the striking Cathedral of Santa Maria Assunta, with its intricate facade and imposing campanile. You'll also see Piazza del Campo, the heart of the city and home of the Torre del Mangia tower and Palazzo Pubblico.
Day 5 - Santa Margherita (for Portofino), Italy
Time in port: 07:00–17:00
We’re still in Italy on day five of your Hidden Gems itinerary, exploring the Italian Riviera. Only 20 minutes from the port of Santa Margherita is photogenic Portofino, a favourite getaway for the rich and famous.
The coast’s rough and rugged landscape is just begging to be explored. Admire the luxury yachts in the harbour, and walk among the colourful houses of the fishing villages that line the bays.
A 10-minute walk from the harbour, up a winding pathway through Mediterranean gardens, you’ll find the Chiesa di San Giorgio. This castle boasts the finest panoramic views of Portofino and the surrounding area.
Day 6 - Sète (for Carcassonne), France
Time in port: 10:00–19:00
A bewitching mix of canals and castles is on the menu during your visit to Sète and Carcassonne. The old port is reminiscent of Venice with its myriad canals and bridges, and if you head for the entrance to the harbour, you can see Fort Saint-Pierre, a military fort now used a festival and concert venue.
You'd be forgiven for thinking you'd somehow been transported into a Disney film when you tour the medieval city of Carcassonne. The jewel in its crown is the monumental Count's Castle, a walled fortress with numerous towers, two attractive courtyards and a 90-metre tower. The city has an impressive 52 towers, romantic cobbled streets and canals where you can rent a boat to see the town by water.
Day 7 - Tarragona, Spain
Time in port: 09:00–19:00
Take the 10-minute shuttle to the small but perfectly formed city of Tarragona. Awarded UNESCO Heritage status for its Roman ruins, its pièce de résistance is the Roman amphitheatre which overlooks the Mediterranean Sea. Explore, too, the circus, theatre and city walls. And the Romanesque-Gothic Catedral de Santa Maria de Tarragona has a beautiful rosette in the centre of its facade, at the highest point of the city.
If you’ve got kids in tow, hop aboard the tourist train with its audio guide to explore the city. Or, if you fancy a dip, Playa El Milagro is Tarragona’s popular beach, with golden sands and a view of the port.
Day 8 - Palma, Majorca
You’ll arrive back in Palma with fantastic memories of an unforgettable holiday. If you’ve got some time to spare before your flight home, head for the ‘golden mile of Palma’, Paseo del Borne, and pick up some souvenirs for the folks back home.