A Mediterranean cruise from Barcelona visiting Spain, Italy, and France is the perfect vacation for those who want to experience three different cultures in one trip!
Cruise the Mediterranean with Royal Caribbean
One of the most popular cruises in the Mediterranean is with Royal Caribbean Cruise Line, starting from Barcelona. Spend five nights in fantastic Barcelona and get to know this wonderful city. Then, climb on board your cruise ship for a memorable 7-night cruise.
Best of all, it’s easy to book yourself, so you have complete control over your vacation!
5 nights in Barcelona + 7-night Western Mediterranean Cruise
Barcelona is known for trendy boutiques, fantastic architecture, and outstanding cuisine. The Catalan capital is our favorite Spanish city. It has everything: shopping, beaches, stunning architecture, great food, world-renowned art, friendly locals, and cozy neighborhoods.
Five nights in this great city is the perfect way to kick-start your Mediterranean cruise from Barcelona for a vacation in Spain, Italy, and France.
Day 1: Arrive in Barcelona
Arrive at Barcelona Airport, having booked your flight with your favorite airline. (Tip! read our advice about booking your flights online before you book!) The name of the international airport is Josep Tarradellas Barcelona–El Prat Airport. Known as El-Prat.
Transfer to your hotel using an official taxi standing outside your arrival terminal. Relax, shake off any jet lag, and enjoy your first of 5 nights in Barcelona.
Days 2-5: Exploring Barcelona
Follow our four-day sightseeing guide to maximize your pre-cruise days in Barcelona. Must-see sights include:
- Eixample – Mansana de la Discordia, Casa Milà (La Pedrera), Basilica of La Sagrada Familia
- The Gothic Quarter (Barri Gòtic) – La Rambla, Plaça de Catalunya, Mercado de La Boqueria, The Cathedral of Barcelona, Plaça de Sant Jaume, Picasso Museum
- Barceloneta, the Beach & Port Olympic
- Parc Guell and Camp Nou
Day 6: Check-in for your Mediterranean cruise from Barcelona
Time to cruise! Your Mediterranean cruise, including Spain, Italy, and France, is finally here. Check out from your hotel and transfer to the Port of Barcelona. The easiest way to get from the city to the port for your cruise is to ask your hotel for help making a taxi reservation.
Your port check-in time is on your cruise ticket. Make sure you get there in good time!
- Cruise Line: Royal Caribbean International
- Name of Ship: Allure of the Seas – read more about the fantastic Allure of the Seas and Royals “Oasis” class ships here!
- Start Date: Weekly with Sunday departure from May through to October (Note! Cruise dates, ships, and itineraries are subject to change at any time check with Royal Caribbean at the time of booking)
- Cruise Port: From/To Port of Barcelona, Spain
Days 6 to 13: Western Mediterranean Cruise with Royal Caribbean International (7 nights/8 days)
Cruise Day 1: Barcelona
Check in for your Mediterranean cruise at the port of Barcelona. Royal Caribbean’s ships have all the amenities you want or need on vacation.
Settle into your cabin, unpack your suitcase, and head to the buffet restaurant for lunch. Or grab your favorite glass of bubble and relax on deck for the sail-away party!
Before you leave home, we recommend that you download Royal Caribbean International app onto your mobile telephone. It's a great way to easily check in for your cruise, stay connected with family and friends on the ship, plan your activities, make reservations and see all that's happening on board. And you do not need wifi to use it!
Cruise Day 2: Palma de Mallorca, Spain
The bay of Palma is a beautiful destination and the capital of the Spanish island, Mallorca.
We love Palma’s rich cultural heritage with stunning architecture and works of art. And of course the wide open beaches, water sports and deep sea fishing on offer.
You can take a leisurely walk into the city center from the port. If you do not book an excursion with the cruise line and want to tour the city, head towards Palma Cathedral. Located in the city’s heart, it’s an excellent spot to start exploring independently.
Portixol is a 10-minute walk from the center of Palma if you prefer a beach. Here you will find plenty of local restaurants serving lunch with a view.
There are many bike and electric scooter rentals along the beachfront, and on a hot day, it’s a great way to explore the coastline. If you want to book in advance, then Viator has trustworthy suppliers.
Cruise Day 3: Provence, France (Port of call: Marseilles)
Excursions from the port of Marseilles offer you the chance to experience the Provence region and see France as it was centuries ago. Medieval buildings and picturesque villages line narrow cobblestone lanes. The region is well known for its lavender fields, olive groves, and vineyards.
This stunning area is also known for its cuisine, with ingredients that grow profusely in the Mediterranean region. Provençal cuisine comprises fresh, local produce and recipes handed down through generations.
While our tip is to book an excursion and venture further afield to visit Provence, Calanques National Park, or a boat trip to Cassis, Marseilles offers many sights to visit if you stay close to the port.
Be sure to tour the city with a guide to appreciate all Marseilles offers. Visit Quai des Belges, the Chateau d’If, and Notre Dame de la Garde.
Take a stroll through Marseilles’s old quarter. You’ll find many art galleries and antique shops. Or enjoy their world-famous signature dish, bouillabaisse, at any one of the restaurants in town. Stick to the busy touristy areas of Marseille and beware of pickpockets.
Cruise Day 4: Florence/Pisa, Italy (Port of call: La Spezia)
Four days into your Mediterranean cruise from Barcelona and Allure is docked in La Spezia, Italy.
If you do not want to wander far from the ship, explore art galleries, museums, and castles in La Spezia. Visit the Castle of San Giorgio, located on top of a hill overlooking the port with its magnificent views. Alternatively, take a boat trip up the River Magra to view its medieval bridges and wetlands.
Choosing what to do or which excursion to book for your port of call in La Spezia can be challenging.
La Spezia is the entrance port to so many fantastic Italian destinations. You are spoilt for choice. From here, you can visit Cinque Terre, Pisa, or Florence. Each one in itself is great, and the surrounding areas are stunning.
Stunning Cinque Terre
If you want an adventure out in nature and love hiking, choose Cinque Terre. Cinque Terre is a group of five villages that stretch along Italy’s Riviera di Levante, with a dramatic section known as the Cinque Terre National Park.
It is a UNESCO World Heritage site. You can visit the five villages: Riomaggiore, Manarola, Corniglia, Vernazza, and Monterosso al Mare.
Book this day out with your cruise line; alternatively, book train tickets or a guided tour in advance. Remember, Cinque Terre is a few hours away from La Spezia, so don’t miss your cruise departure time. We promise – it’s well worth the journey!
Pisa or Florence?
An alternative to visiting Cinque Terre is a trip to Pisa or Florence.
Pisa may well have been on your bucket list for a long time! Who doesn’t want to stand next to the famous Leaning Tower?
In our opinion, Florence offers a richer experience. Discover the Uffizi Gallery, where you can view Botticelli’s Birth of Venus and Primavera, climb the world-famous Duomo, or walk the postcard-perfect Ponte Vecchio bridge.
Don’t worry if you feel you need longer here. Florence is a beautiful destination to visit again. Make this city part of a more extended trip to the region of Tuscany in your future travel plans!
Cruise Day 5: Rome, Italy (Port of Call: Civitavecchia)
Today, you arrive in the port of Civitavecchia, Rome, probably the most important city in European history. Get more ideas on how to spend a day in Rome here. We have detailed itineraries for a choice of four spectacular sightseeing options in this iconic city, including these highlights:
- The Jewish Quarter, Trastevere, and The Vatican
- Piazza Navona, The Pantheon and Trevi Fountain
- The Spanish Steps and Villa Borghese
- Ancient Rome,Vittoriano and the Colosseum
You will also find information about how to get back to the cruise port of your day exploring here.
Cruise Day 6: Naples/Capri, Italy
Your itinerary with Royal Caribbean gets better and better. On day 6, your cruise ship docks in Naples, southern Italy. From Naples, you are just a 1-hour ferry ride from the island of Capri.
Emperor Augustus’ once private paradise and now a modern-day celebrity hideaway, Capri is a luxury holiday destination.
Capri – how to get there and what to do
Some shore excursions to Capri with the cruise line can be costly. You can make your way there quite easily. Most cruise ships take you to Terminal Stazione Marittima in Naples (always check with your cruise line). The hydrofoil from nearby Molo Beverello takes under one hour to reach Capri. You will need to queue to get your tickets.
The price of a one-way ticket to Capri is around 25 euros per person, but be sure to buy a return ticket for a specific departure time. Queueing for tickets on the island can take a very long, and you do not want to miss getting back to the port in time to board your cruise ship or tender boat.
Note the time your cruise ship or tender boat departs Naples and make sure you take a hydrofoil from Capri at the latest 2 hours before ship departure.
If all this seems too complicated, book tickets with your cruise line for your trip to Capri, then you can explore yourself once you are there.
It can be a choppy ride over to Capri if the sea is rough, so if you get seasick easily, you may want to take seasick tablets or put on a seaband before you start your day.
The towns of Marina Grande, Ana Capri, and Capri
There are three towns on the island—Marina Grande, where you will arrive on the island, Anacapri, and Capri. We recommend downloading a map of the island before traveling to orientate yourself.
When you arrive by ferry or hydrofoil, you will be in the village of Marina Grande. This is the area of the marina and the port on Capri, where all transport to the island departs.
You can get to Ana Capri and Capri from Marina Grande. Both towns are closed to traffic in the center, so once there, all exploring is done on foot. If you want to go further afield and explore the island’s coastline and nature, you can rent a scooter at Marina Grande.
The town of Anacapri
Anacapri is the quieter side of the island and the highest point. It is excellent for nature lovers visiting Mount Solaro for panoramic views. The bus takes about 20 minutes from Marina Grande to Anacapri. Once in the town, a chair lift from Piazza Vittoria to Monte Solaro takes approximately 10 minutes.
The town of Capri
Shoppers and foodies should spend some time in the exclusive boutiques and cafes in Capri, the island’s more busy, cosmopolitan side.
Take the cable car or bus from Marina Grande to the main square, Piazza Umberto (the Piazzetta), in the center of Capri town. There are small buses available that take approximately 20 people per bus. You can buy a ticket at the ticket booth in the arrivals harbor of Marina Grande.
It is walkable within about 20 minutes, but the road is steep, narrow, and winding, and in the heat, it feels a long way.
Alternatively, you can use the Capri Funicular (also referred to as the Capri cable car). The red carriage takes you to the Piazzetta in just a few minutes.
Visiting The Blue Grotto and Faraglioni, the trio of sea giants
When you get to Marina Grande, there are also plenty of options to book a small boat to see the fantastic illuminated caves of the Blue Grotto. This is, without doubt, the most famous attraction on Capri, together with sailing through Faraglioni’s stunning towering rock formations.
From Marina Grande, there is a private jetty where you buy tickets for a boat tour in a small wooden row boat. The entrance fee to the Blue Grotto is around 18 euros per person, and it’s usual to tip your captain.
It’s an unforgettable experience!
Amalfi Coast and Capri excursion
Suppose time and budget allow, and you want to squeeze even more sights into your shore excursion. In that case, we highly recommend a private boat tour from Naples port along the Amalfi coast, visiting Amalfi and the stunning Positano, then over to Capri Island. It’s a fantastic way to see this beautiful coastline. Viator offers a great trip.
Visit the legend of Pompei.
Instead of Capri, a history enthusiast will love visiting the ancient ruins of Pompei, buried by the 79 A.D. eruption of Mount Vesuvius. We recommend you join a guided tour to hear the stories behind the ruins. You pay a small fee to join a tour once inside the entrance.
Unfortunately, with just one day in the port of Naples, you will not have time to visit Capri and Pompei. But hopefully, this will not be your last visit to southern Italy. The whole of the Amalfi coastline deserves a trip in itself.
When you visit, we recommend basing yourself at Positano. You can rent a car or use local transport to all the coastal towns. This coastline will be one of the prettiest places you will ever visit.
Cruise Day 7: Day At Sea
A day at sea is a perfect way to end this great cruise to Spain, Italy, and France. Enjoy the fantastic amenities and activities on board your cruise ship, Allure of the Seas.
Cruise Day 8: Return to the Port of Barcelona and disembark your cruise
Disembark at Port of Barcelona. Head back into the city to extend your stay if you have booked extra hotel nights. Or transfer back to Barcelona airport with Royal Caribbean’s transfer bus for your flight home.
Book your transfer in advance with the cruise line, as places on the bus can fill up quickly. Remember, if you have a morning flight booked to take you home, ask the cruise line for an early checkout from the ship.