As winter begins to fade away, cruise ships begin leaving their southern homes in Florida to welcome in spring in Europe. If you still want a taste of the Caribbean waters, but are curious about cruising to Europe, we have the perfect solution.
Our editors found a terrific price on a transatlantic crossing that visits four islands in the Caribbean and four ports in Europe starting from just $619. With this 17-night winter combo cruise, you can have your beaches and big cities too.
The Costa Fortuna departs from Fort Lauderdale on the Ides of March, and makes its way to the popular cruise port in the crystal-clear waters and white sands beaches of Nassau, Bahamas. From there, it sails to the Dominican Republic's Catalina Island, an off-the-path destination that seems to be hand-selected by Mother Nature for beach-goers.
After soaking in the sun, you’ll visit San Maarten, where you’ll find a blend of Caribbean and European culture in this Dutch and French owned island. Next on the roster is Pointe-a-Pitre, in Guadeloupe, an area that began as a tiny fish market, has now flourished into a lively open-air market full of fruit, vegetables, clothing, handicrafts and more.
The final Caribbean port-of-call before sailing across the big pond is Bridgetown, Barbados. During your stay, be sure to visit Harrison’s Cave filled with underground streams, waterfalls, and pools.
After leaving Barbados, you’ll spend the next five days either roaming the Italian-built ship or enjoying fine cuisine in one of Costa’s elegant dining halls. On day six, after leaving the Caribbean, the ship will dock in another island, Santa Cruz de Tenerife, home to numerous historical sculptures, galleries, and gold-sand beaches.
Next stop is Funchal, Portugal, a picturesque city with white-row houses overlooking a beautiful bay. After that, it’s on to Barcelona, Spain, where the artwork oozes from its architecture and museums as architecture and museums, and the city pumps with a vibrant nightlife scene. The final port of call on this 17-night cruise is Savona, Italy. Interior cabin prices for this one-time-only March 15 sailing start at $619.
All prices are per person and based on double occupancy. Accommodations, meals, some beverages, entertainment and port charges are covered in the cost. Government fees and taxes as well as off-boat expenditures are extra.
You'll have to get over that whole Ides of March superstition.