Honig Vineyard & Winery
2019 Mediterranean Wine Cruise
Ports of Call
Monte Carlo, Monaco
The independent principality of Monaco is famous as the playground of the Côte d’Azur. With nice beaches, elegant hotels and a vibrant nightlife, this tiny domain is a favorite haunt of the jet set. In the possession of the Grimaldi family for more than 700 years, a treaty with France guarantees Monaco’s independence as long as the principality is governed by the Grimaldis.
The fashionable enclave numbers only about 32,000 inhabitants and is smaller than New York’s Central Park, but it boasts some of the most expensive real estate in the world. In addition to its luxury hotels and beautiful beaches, Monaco is noted for its mild climate and magnificent scenery. Once an exclusive wintering stop for Europe’s aristocracy, today there are more than five million visitors annually. Of the principality’s four sections - La Condamine, Fontvieille, Monaco-Ville and Monte Carlo, the latter two rank highest on every visitor’s must-see list.
Nestled between Cannes and Nice on the French Riviera (Côte d'Azur), Antibes is a resort town known for its Old town enclosed by 16th-century ramparts with the star-shaped Fort Carré, with its 360-degree panoramic views. Today Antibes is famous as one of the Mediterranean's premier luxury harbors, where sleek white, multi-million dollar mega yachts bob in the sheltered harbor. Blessed with a mild climate and flourishing vegetation, Antibes also has an important commercial flower-growing industry that includes roses, carnations and other blooms. Be sure to visit the renowned Musée Picasso housed in the Chateau Grimaldi, an impressive stone castle with views of the sea. The museum offers a unique insight into the work produced by Picasso and also has an extensive collection of contemporary art.
Lying on a natural harbor on the French Riviera, Toulon is France's principal naval base, and the waterfront is always full of life. Designed around stately fountains and small squares, the Old city is tucked between the harbor and boulevard de Strasbourg, and its Cathedrale Saint-Marie-Majeure is noteworthy for its Romanesque architecture. The city is also rich in history, much of it on display in the marine museum and the Museum of Toulon, celebrated for its Provencal paintings. For the ultimate view of Toulon, ride the cable car to Mount Faron.
Mahon (Minorca), Spain
Mahon, the capital of the Spanish island of Menorca, is set on a ridge above the deep inlet that forms the harbor, which is the biggest natural port in the Mediterranean. Make sure you are on deck for the arrival into Mahon, as the white houses clinging to the rocky coastline make a beautiful sight. The laid-back style of town reflects the legacy of the British occupation in the 18th-century, with bow-fronted houses and sash windows. Pavement cafes occupy just about every available space, making Mahon a very pleasant place to get into the unhurried Menorcan way of life.
Ajaccio, Corsica, France
Considered Corsica's primary commercial and cultural hub, the largest city and regional capital of Ajaccio is situated on the west coast of the island, approximately 400 miles southeast of Marseille, France. Founded in 1492, vestiges of ancient Corsica in this ville impériale revolve around the city's most famous son, Napoléon Bonaparte, whose family home—now the national museum Maison Bonaparte—pays tribute to the emperor's historical influence. Indeed, Napoléon takes center stage in this lively city of approximately 64,000 inhabitants, from the exceptional Palais Fesch/ Musée des Beaux Arts to eponymous street names and statues sprinkled around the town's accessible squares, gardens, and courtyards.
Remnants from what was originally a 12th-century Genoese colony are still visible around the Old Town near the imposing citadel and watchtower. Perfect for exploring, the luminous seaside city surrounded by snowcapped mountains and pretty beaches offers numerous sites, eateries, side streets, and a popular harbor, where sailboats and fishing vessels moor in the picturesque Tino Rossi port lined with well-established restaurants and cafés serving fresh local fare.
In a tiny cove, out of sight and almost inaccessible, is hidden an ancient fishing village, that has become an internationally renowned symbol. Until the 19th century, Portofino was a fishing village, the bay was a well-known safe haven for ships, and the promontory served as an outpost for coastal sightings. At the end of the 19th century, all over Europe, the middle classes and aristocracy began to choose this beautiful place to build their summer residences, attracting the likes of Humphrey Bogart, Sophia Loren, Richard Burton, Elizabeth Taylor and Princess Grace. Now, since the 1950s, Portofino has welcomed big Hollywood names, great artists, and entrepreneurs, making it famous all over the world.
Porto Santo Stefano, Italy
Just off the coast of Tuscany, Monte Argentario rises from the sea. On the slopes of the mountain stands Port Santo Stefano, a town under constant siege by pirates until the 16th century when the Spanish fortified the seaport. The imposing Spanish fortress still dominates the harbor, and a walk along the citadel's walls and staircases reveals a fascinating history as well as splendid views. For a more leisurely pursuit, take the ferry to nearby Giglio Island and relax on one of the quiet beaches lapped by crystal clear waters.
Sprawled across seven legendary hills, romantic and beautiful Rome was one of the great centers of the ancient world. Although its beginning is shrouded in legend and its development is full of intrigue and struggle, Rome has always been and remains the “Eternal City.” Its greatest splendor was experienced during the 1st and 2nd centuries when art flourished, monumental works of architecture were erected, and the mighty Roman legions swept outward, conquering much of the known world.
Today’s Rome, with its splendid churches, ancient monuments and palaces, spacious parks, tree-lined boulevards, fountains, outdoor cafés and elegant shops, is one of the world’s most attractive and exciting cities. Among the most famous monuments is the Coliseum. As you walk its cool, dark passageways, imagine the voices that once filled the arena as 50,000 spectators watched combat between muscled gladiators and ferocious animals. Stop to see the remains of the Forum, once the city’s political and commercial center. In later times, Rome’s squares were enhanced with such imposing structures as the Vittorio Emanuele Monument, the monumental Trevi fountain and Bernini’s Fountain of the Four Rivers.