Gems of the Adriatic With Marella Cruises



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The Adriatic Sea is one of the real treasures of Europe, and it is home to some amazing cruise destinations.

Dubrovnik, Croatia on the Adriatic Sea

With the chance to explore several countries in close quarters, soak up the sun thanks to the beautiful climate, enjoy amazing food and a wealth of history, cruises to the Adriatic really are packed with treats, and make for the perfect summer getaway.

In this guide, I’ve looked at the Adriatic cruise itineraries you can enjoy with Marella, including all the details of the exciting ports you can visit.

Enjoy amazing all-inclusive cruise deals with Marella Cruises

Flights, drinks, tips and more included!

Marella Cruises – Adriatic Itineraries

There are several itineraries that you can choose from when you want to cruise the Adriatic Sea with Marella. Each offers slightly different sailing routes, letting you decide which of the ports are your priority when picking your cruise.

Adriatic Affair

Dubrovnik, Croatia > Koper, Slovenia > Rijeka, Croatia > Ancona, Italy > Split, Croatia > Bar, Montenegro > Dubrovnik, Croatia

Adriatic Delights

Dubrovnik, Croatia > Zadar, Croatia > Trieste, Italy > Ancona, Italy > Split, Croatia > Kotor, Montenegro > Dubrovnik, Croatia

Adriatic Explorer

Corfu Town, Corfu > Dubrovnik, Croatia > Split, Croatia > Zadar, Croatia > Trieste, Italy > Kotor, Montenegro > Corfu Town

Marella Cruises – Adriatic Sea Ports of Call

Let’s take a look at all the ports you can visit on an Adriatic cruise with Marella:

Ancona, Italy

Ancona, Italy

As you sail into Ancona’s lively harbor, a panorama of the town’s historic marvels unfolds before you. The waterfront is lined with weathered defensive fortifications, while atop the hill, an ancient domed cathedral will definitely draw your attention.

Within the town’s terracotta-roofed skyline, Gothic, Roman, and Greek architectural wonders coexist harmoniously alongside modern additions, with various cafés and museums seamlessly integrated into the tapestry of the city.

Dominating the harbor’s skyline is the pentagonal Lazzaretto of Ancona, an 18th-century fortress situated on an artificial island. Originally serving as a leper colony, it later assumed military significance during the First World War. Today, it houses a unique tactile museum, inviting visitors to interact with its exhibits firsthand.

Bar, Montenegro

Bar, Montenegro

Bar, nestled between the Adriatic Sea and a stunning blue-hued mountain range, boasts a bustling waterfront that defines its southern charm.

Just a stone’s throw away lies the picturesque Stari Bar, where the remnants of Byzantine churches, mosques, Turkish baths, and aqueducts stand as silent witnesses to the town’s storied history. Embark on a self-guided tour through the maze of ruins, guided by informative signs that unravel the mysteries of the past.

Nature enthusiasts will find solace in the breathtaking landscapes of Lake Skadar National Park, a mere half-hour drive away. Lose yourself in the mesmerizing beauty of its pristine surroundings, where verdant hills and crystal-clear waters beckon explorers to embrace the wonders of the natural world.

Corfu Town, Corfu

Corfu Town

Drenched in a vibrant array of flowers, Corfu captivates with its stunning beauty. Dubbed the Emerald Isle, its sprawling beaches, verdant landscapes, and charming villages beckon travelers to capture every moment through their lenses.

While not strictly on the Adriatic Sea, Corfu Town does serve as embarkation port for some cruises, and you may have time to enjoy the Glyfada beach should you decide to extend your getaway here before or after your cruise.

Dubrovnik, Croatia

Dubrovnik, Croatia

Dubrovnik, with its ancient city walls, charming red rooftops, and time-worn cobbled streets, exudes an irresistible allure from the moment you arrive.

Explore the 17th-century cathedral nestled within the old town, adorned with captivating gold and silver remnants. Then, venture to Rector’s Palace, once the esteemed residence of Dubrovnik’s Republic Rector, now home to a remarkable collection of artifacts and furniture.

You could also take a trip to the nearby Elaphite Islands, where lush pine forests, tranquil beaches, and sprawling olive groves await. Though Game of Thrones fans may just prefer to wander the city and spot backdrops from the TV show.

Koper, Slovenia

Koper, Slovenia

Nestled along a broad horseshoe-shaped bay, Koper embodies a charming blend of medieval allure and contemporary vibrancy. Wander through its labyrinthine streets, where historical landmarks intertwine seamlessly with chic boutiques, inviting you to explore at every turn.

You can immerse yourself in the wonders of nature with a journey to the captivating Postojna Caves, Slovenia’s geological marvels. Or venture to the picturesque town of Piran, affectionately referred to as ‘little Italy,’ where medieval charm abounds amidst its winding alleys, tranquil squares, and charming churches.

You could also take an excursion to Slovenia’s capital, Ljubljana, and delve into the rich cultural tapestry of the National Museum. Discover ancient Paleolithic artifacts and marvel at the country’s sole Egyptian mummy housed within its walls.

Kotor, Montenegro

Kotor, Montenegro

Nestled in Southeast Europe, Kotor boasts scenery that will leave you breathless from the moment you arrive. As cruise passengers approach the port via tender boat, they are treated to expansive vistas of glistening lakes and verdant mountains.

Discover the enchanting charm this Medieval walled city designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Nestled amidst towering mountains, it sits along southern Europe’s deepest fjord and boasts one of the world’s most stunning natural harbors. Wander through its ancient walls to uncover winding streets, cobblestone squares, and picturesque churches worthy of any camera lens.

Journey to Budva, Montenegro’s premier tourist destination, where striking architecture harmonizes with inviting sandy beaches. It’s no wonder that this spot has attracted the attention of many millionaires seeking a slice of paradise.

Rijeka, Croatia

Rijeka, Croatia

Rijeka, a bustling working port, harbors hidden pockets of old-world charm amidst its vibrant streets. Pastel-hued buildings adorned with terracotta roofs and intricate arches line the pedestrian thoroughfares, offering a glimpse into a bygone era. Serving as a gateway to the idyllic islands dotting the Kvarner Gulf, Rijeka beckons with its rustic allure, characterized by serene coves and inviting beaches.

Stroll through the car-free Korzo district, where Baroque clock towers punctuate the skyline, and the main square bustles with lively fountains and locals enjoying coffee on sun-drenched café terraces.

Or experience the authentic rhythms of daily life at the canalside market, a brief stroll from the harbor, where vibrant flower and food stalls showcase the city’s bustling atmosphere.

Split, Croatia

Split, Croatia

Situated at the core of the Dalmatia region, Split beckons with its charming pavement cafés, rich historical heritage, and a mesmerizing archipelago dotting its coastline.

You’ll embark on a journey to the Cathedral of St. Domnius, adorned with 13th-century oak doors narrating scenes from Christ’s life. Once done, explore the labyrinth of lanes enveloping the cathedral, brimming with enticing shops and lively bars awaiting your discovery.

Or you may prefer to venture to the enchanting waterfalls of Krka, where cascades of pristine white water span a vast 2-mile expanse, offering a breathtaking natural spectacle.

Trieste, Italy

Trieste, Italy

Trieste, an Italian gem, unveils enchanting cobbled piazzas adorned with bustling cafés, adorned with Baroque churches, and embraced by an old town exuding charm with its pastel-colored buildings. Situated adjacent to the Slovenian border, it serves as an excellent gateway to Slovenia’s breathtaking landscapes.

Ascend San Giusto hill to discover a Medieval cathedral and castle, offering panoramic terraces boasting unparalleled city vistas.

Immerse yourself in the vibrant heart of the city at the picturesque Piazza Unità d’Italia, where lively ambiance and architectural splendor converge, inviting visitors to savor the essence of Trieste’s cultural richness.

Zadar, Croatia

Zadar, Croatia

Zadar seamlessly blends age-old charm with breathtaking beauty along the Adriatic Coast. As one of Europe’s oldest cities, its storied past spans over 3,000 years, yet its allure remains undeniably captivating. Picture-perfect traffic-free streets are adorned with glistening marble, topped with iconic red roofs, and adorned with remnants of ancient Roman civilization and historic churches.

Step into the awe-inspiring St. Donata’s Church, a masterpiece of 9th-century pre-Romanesque architecture, proudly standing as Croatia’s largest of its kind. Or indulge in Zadar’s vibrant café culture, and treat yourself to a taste of Dalmatian ham as you soak in the city’s lively atmosphere.

A trip to the Krka National Park is considered an essential excursion. Embracing the meandering River Krka, the park unveils a picturesque tapestry of gorges, lakes, and cascading waterfalls nestled amidst verdant forests.

Why Cruise with Marella?

It’s not just the destination – a cruise with Marella offers a wide range of exciting features, including fantastic food options, plenty of ways to relax on board, and drinks being included with your fare – no need to pay extra.

Marella is tailored to the British market, and offers flights from several airports across the UK to make your journey even more relaxing and convenient. With overseas transfers included too, all you need to do is make sure you get to the airport on time and everything else is handled for you.

And why not extend your escape with a cruise & stay holiday? You’ll get to choose from some of the best TUI hotels for that pre- or post-cruise stay.

Final Word

The Adriatic Sea is a fantastic destination, and one best explored by cruise ship so that you can see all the culture and history of the region in one action-packed getaway.

Make sure you secure your own cabin as soon as you can, as this region is extremely popular and cruise itineraries often sell out.

Enjoy amazing all-inclusive cruise deals with Marella Cruises

Flights, drinks, tips and more included!

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Cruise Mummy

Jenni Fielding is the founder of Cruise Mummy. She has worked in the cruise industry since 2015 and has taken over 30 cruises. Now, she helps over 1 million people per month to plan their perfect cruise holidays.

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