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Boats at the docks of Honfleur, France

London to Lisbon Expedition

Example 14 Day Cruise aboard Silver Wind
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Travelling from London to Lisbon, this 14-day voyage aboard Silver Wind takes in Europe’s most gastronomic regions, and has a few surprises on the way! Laden with history – think 900 year old tapestries, vineyards dating from the 17th century and a monastery cut off by the tides – every country’s diversity is reflected in its gastronomy. Whether shucking oysters in Normandy or enjoying tapas in Bilbao, enjoy a region that is fast becoming a hub for artists and food lovers alike.
Tower bridge at dusk, London, England
Trip Type:
  • Small Ship
Activity Level: Relaxed
0

Full Itinerary

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Day 1: London | Embark

Arrive in London and embark on the Silver Wind for a journey through Europe’s most gastronomic regions.

Day 2: London

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Centuries-old architecture shares an instantly recognisable skyline with the modern metallic and glass shards of skyscrapers in London, a city of endless history and tradition. Arrive at the centre of it all, below the watch of one of the most famous bridges in the world, Tower Bridge. From here, you can begin a tour of iconic landmarks, and discover why England’s capital is one of the most visited, adored and adulated cities. So much to see, so little time. The traditional and contemporary go hand in hand in London like nowhere else. Ascend the London Eye, for a birds-eye view of the city, before wandering across the Thames's wide flow to the Gothic architecture of the Houses of Parliament, and the rise of Big Ben’s unmistakable clocktower. A hefty sprinkle of royal pageantry awaits at Buckingham Palace, where red-jacketed soldiers stomp sternly and solemnly in their duty, during ceremonies to mark the changing of the guards.

Day 3: Honfleur

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
The crammed together, timber-framed houses of Honfleur's delightful waterfront simply beg to be painted, and the waterfront beauty has been immortalised on the canvases of artists like Monet, and Honfleur's celebrated son, Boudin. Located in scenic Normandy, where the Seine opens out into the Channel, this is one of France's - and the world's - most spectacular, historic harbours. Impossibly picturesque, the Vieux Bassin's Norman harbour townhouses are an artist’s dream, reflecting out onto the still water, between bright wooden fishing boats. It may be gorgeous, but it’s also a historically important port, and Samuel de Champlain's epic voyage - which resulted in the founding of Quebec - launched from these waters. Take a stroll back in time, as you wander cobbled streets where flowers spill down walls or sit to indulge in Calvados – brandy made from Normandy's famous apples. A museum dedicated to Eugene Boudin, the town's influential impressionist artist, displays visions of the harbour and region, as well as paintings of the town's stunning wooden church. Wander to Eglise St Catherine itself, to see the twisting structure, which is France's largest wooden chapel. 

Day 4: Saint Malo (Brittany)

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Ship sails flutter in the breeze, at the natural port of Saint-Malo - a historic and resilient walled city, which watches out over golden sands and island fortresses. Strung tenuously to the mainland, Saint Malo was the historic home of a rowdy mix of skilled sailors and new world explorers - as well as the plunderers who earned the place its 'Pirate City' title. Some of history's great voyages have launched from here - including Jacques Cartier's, which led to the settlement of New France and modern-day Quebec. Founded by a Welsh monk, who made his way here in the 6th century, Saint Malo's castle is forged from sheer granite, and its steep defensive ramparts arise defiantly. The atmospheric walled town turns its back to the mainland and gazes out longingly into the sea. Explore streets that breathe with maritime tales and medieval charm - restored from the intense damage sustained during the Second World War. Cathédrale de St Malo rises above the tight paths, offering views of the peppered islands and fortifications. Boatloads of fresh oysters and scallops are heaved ashore - savour them or grab savoury crepes galettes, stuffed with cheese and ham. Wash Saint Malo's foods down with a Brittany cider, which challenges wine as the indulgence of choice in these parts. 

Day 5: At Sea

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Days at sea are the perfect opportunity to relax, unwind and catch up with what you’ve been meaning to do. So whether that is going to the gym, visiting the spa, whale watching, catching up on your reading or simply topping up your tan, these blue sea days are the perfect balance to busy days spent exploring shore side.

Day 6-7: Bordeaux

  • Ship
  • 2 Breakfasts, 2 Lunches, 2 Dinners
The name alone conjures images of sun-ripened grapes, splashes of refined flavour, and the joy of clinking glasses. Bordeaux is synonymous with quality and prestige, and the promise of endless opportunities to sample the city’s famous, full-bodied red wines makes a visit to this elegant French port city one to truly savour. Sprinkled with scenic, turret-adorned mansion castles, which stand above soil softened by the Atlantic and winding flow of the Garonne River, the vineyards of Bordeaux consistently produce revered wines, enjoyed right across the globe. Explore France’s largest wine region, walking through vineyards where dusty clumps of grapes hang, before descending into cellars to see the painstaking processes that make this region a global wine centre. The acclaimed, sensory experience of Cité du Vin wine museum lets you put your own nose to the test, learning more about the craft involved in producing world class vintages.

Bordeaux itself is an intoxicating blend of old and new – a fact perfectly illustrated by the Water Mirror. This living art installation has reinvigorated one of the city’s most important historical sites, and it feels as though you’re walking on water, as you step through the cooling mist of Place De La Bourse. The moisture generates a glorious mirrored composition of the 300-year-old elegant palatial architecture in front of you. Water also flows freely from the magnificent Monument aux Girondins statue, where horses rear up to extol the values of the Girondin revolutionaries. Marche des Quais – the city’s lively fish market – is the spot to try this wine capital’s freshest lemon-drizzled oysters and juicy prawns.

Day 8: San Sebastian

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Located on the southern shore of the Bay of Biscayne in the Basque country and very close to the French border, San Sebastian -or Donostia in Basque- has been one of the two cultural capitals of Europe in 2016 despite its small size of approximately 186,000 inhabitants. Spreading out from circular La Concha Bay with its pristine white beach and along the river Urumea, San Sebastian has a special feel to it. The Basque like to compare it to a smaller Paris that attracted wealthy beachgoers during the Belle Époque. One of San Sebastian’s most impressive buildings is the town hall which was originally built as a casino in 1882. Several buildings dating back to the 19th century still remain and the Romantic Center shows a number of examples of the Parisian style architecture.

On the other hand, La Parte Vieja, i.e. the Old Town, has the highest concentration of bars worldwide and the local pintxos (the Basque name for tapas) are considered especially tasty. That should be no surprise, considering that 9 restaurants in San Sebastian have a total of 16 Michelin stars –only Tokyo has more! Next to the Old Town, and jutting out into the Cantabrian Sea, is Mount Urgull with the remains of its fort and walls that surrounded the medieval town in the 12th century. Along the shore of Ondorreta Beach a group of steel sculptures known as “Peine del Viento” (Comb of the Wind) vie for San Sebastian’s most iconic image, although the International Film Festival will be better known to outsiders.

Day 9: Bilbao

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Whether it’s the flow of its boundary pushing architecture, delights of its finger food tapas, or sweeps of gorgeous shoreline nearby, Bilbao is a city that places a premium on aesthetics. The relentless drive to all things beautiful may be a reaction to the city’s industrial past, but it has led this Basque city to emerge as a new beacon of artistry. American architect Frank Gehry’s masterpiece of flowing metal is the shining standout here, a perfect harmony of smooth titanium and glass, and a thrilling piece in itself. Inside the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao, world-class exhibitions are exhibited in the bright, expansive interior - which practically begs you to explore more. The city has gorgeous historical presence too. Casco Viejo - the medieval area - is its historic core, and home to the original seven streets and cathedral, dating back to the 14th century.

Tall banks of coloured buildings rise either side as you walk, dwarfed by a tide of pretty facades, overflowing flower boxes, and intricate rail balconies. Plaza Nueva is Bilbao’s neoclassical square, with a procession of arches all around you. Morning flea markets regularly overtake it, offering opportunities to pick through piles of coins, dusty books and rusted antiques on the hunt for bargains, in this most elegant setting. The titanic Mercado de la Ribera market looms tall by the river. Explore to eat your way through an endless pile of Basque pintxos – the local take on tapas.

Day 10: Santander

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Northern Spain might not have the same allure as the Mediterranean end of the country, yet as every traveller knows, often the best places are those that are the least known. Enter Santander. With heritage hailing from the prehistoric, Roman and Middle ages, suffice to say that Santander’s roots stretch very far back. As one of Spain’s more important ports during the New World trading era, Santander enjoyed great wealth during the Middle Ages. King Alfonso 13th (1886-1941) made the city his summer residence, bringing about a further economic boom and laying the foundations for modern Santander: a popular summer resort that enjoys one of the most beautiful bay in Spain, a fantastic art and cultural hub (don’t miss the Centro Botin) and a great lust for la vida. Tragically, a two-day fire in 1941 destroyed much of the city, including almost all the medieval heritage. Thus, Santander is today a city of two faces. One: an elegant seaside resort with at least six urban beaches, fabulous restaurants and all the fun in the sun you can muster.

The other: a city with 15,000-year-old prehistoric roots that are visible in the cave paintings at Altamira or Puente Viesgo. If travelling the 30-minutes to see the real things seems too far, make sure you head to the fabulous Prehistory and Archaeology Museum of Cantabria, for extensive displays that take you on an interactive journey through time. Alternatively, make like a local and head to El Sardinero beach for a boho beach vibe that rivals Barcelona.

Day 11: La Coruna

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Revolving around its golden urban beaches, La Coruna is a bustling, historic city, which luxuriates along the twisted Galician coastline. One of Spain’s most undiscovered, under-the-radar destinations, La Coruna boasts juicy seafood and unbridled relaxation beside the Mediterranean's rustling waves, and is set amid a surprisingly lush and vibrant green landscape. A pilgrimage to Santiago de Compostella’s cultural wonders is also easily within your reach from these shores. The narrow streets of the historic centre open out to the vast Plaza de Maria Pita, which is crowned by the triple domes of the City Hall. Cafes and restaurants spill out around the square, perfect for hunkering down for coffee or a glass of refreshing white Albariño wine. Head to Calle Estrella, to taste the fruits of the Atlantic and La Coruna’s seafood - grilled octopus is a particular speciality.

If you’re in a hurry, grab some empanada pastries, filled with minced beef, or head to the City Market, which is packed with Galician flavours and intrigues. Back at the seafront, the peninsula tempts with strolls out to one of the most storied lighthouses in Spain. Still watching the waves after almost 2,000 years, the Tower of Hercules was built by the Romans in the 2nd century, and this UNESCO World Heritage Site rises 55 metres above the Atlantic - making it Spain's second tallest. The winding Paseo Marítimo coastal path skirts beaches and the city's endless waterfront, and is dotted with colourful artworks.

Day 12: Vigo (Galicia)

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Located in in Galicia, in the northwest of Spain on the Portuguese border, Vigo is perhaps the country’s most underrated destination. Considered by many as “just’ an industrial fishing port (meaning the seafood rarely travels further than a mile to your plate), Vigo seduces everyone with its cuisine, landscape and warm Spanish welcomes. Like many of Galicia’s coastal towns, life in Vigo has been dictated by the ocean. The city dates back to Roman times and Romanesque architecture such as the churches of Santa María de Castrelos, Santiago de Bembrive, San Salvador de Coruxo can be found all over the city. From the 16th-18th centuries it became alive with commercial trade and buccaneers looking for sunken treasure. The town still enjoys its status as having sunken treasure in its waters, and debates about who would own this if ever discovered periodically colour local conversations.

The old town and fishermen’s quarter are worth exploring, although unfortunately with the port’s rapid expansion in the 20th century, many of the original fishermen’s houses were demolished. However, remnants of the city’s Medieval past are still visible and a trip along the Spanish-Portuguese border will reward you with the beautiful walled Medieval city of Tui and the Velansa Fortress. The 13th century fortress offers a splendid view of the fortified Cathedral of Tui on the opposite side of the River Miño. Mount Castro, a castle fortress actually in the city, commands a magnificent view of Vigo and the bay.

Day 13: Oporto (Leixões)

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Steep, stacked banks of evocative buildings and cobbled streets perch scenically over the River Duoro, in this authentic, atmospheric Portuguese city. Famed for its wine and bright azulejo tiles - which turn streets into art galleries - Oporto is a charming taste of the real Portugal. Wander the uneven paths of the country’s second-largest city, which are soaked with history, tradition and eye-catching details. Start in the gorgeous, historic Ribeira neighbourhood at the River Douro, and walk up through tiny alleys and narrow streets lined with restaurants and cafes. Catch your breath with a coffee, and be sure to try the famous pastel de nata pastry as a sweet accompaniment. Enjoy views of the colourful city from the skeletal Ponte de Dom Luis I bridge. Its design might ring a bell - the structure was created by a student of Gustav Eiffel, and has a similar aesthetic to his famous tower creation.

Porto Cathedral sits on a rise of steps, towering above the city and offering spectacular views down. The cloisters are a highlight - with beautiful mosaics of the renowned blue and white tiles gleaming. If you’re hungry, the indulgent Francesinha sandwich will fill you up for days. A Portuguese take on French toast - it’s packed full of ham and slathered in cheese, egg and sauce. Or settle in for a feast on some of Portugal’s ubiquitous salted cod, Bacalhau. The climate nurtures the revered vineyards, which surround the city, helping to produce harvests of perfect grapes. Head out to landscapes coated in vineyards from the Douro Valley to try some of the finest local wines.

Day 14: Lisbon | Disembark

  • 1 Breakfast
A glorious mosaic of beauty, freedom and authenticity, Portugal’s capital is a stirring artwork of a city. Known for the seven hills it spreads across, and its stirring fado music, Lisbon is a pastel-coloured blend of houses and beautiful tile artworks - and this creative city strikes a perfect harmony between natural and manmade beauty. Stroll along Alfama's steep, cobbled streets as you explore one of the city’s oldest neighbourhoods - where each house and door could be its own photograph. Look for the decorative tiles, with the distinctive blues and whites of Azulejo ceramics, and visit the dedicated museum to learn more. Afterwards, wind up to São Jorge Castle, where views out across Lisbon’s red rooftops unravel. Just one of many majestic viewpoints, you can also seek out Miradouro da Graça for perhaps Lisbon's finest panorama, with the copper-coloured suspension bridge stretching over sparkling water beyond the sea of buildings. The elegant Tower of Belém rises in the Tagus estuary and is a historic defender of these shores. The grand, carved cloisters of Jerónimos Monastery spread out close by, and there's another UNESCO recognised location close by at Sintra, where a colourful town is set amid thick gardens and towering mountains - capped by the royal Pena Palace.

Photo Gallery

Boats at the docks of Honfleur, France Tower bridge at dusk, London, England Blue hour on the French coast Explore the historic cities and towns of the Bordeaux region La Coruna Bay Explore beautiful Lisbon

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Silver Wind

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Royal Suite
Twin beds or queen-sized bed; Two-bedroom has additional twin beds or queen-sized bed. Large teak veranda and a separate dining area and bar.
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Owner's Suite
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Notes

Expedition highlights and wildlife listed here are possible experiences only and cannot be guaranteed. Your Expedition Leader and Captain will work together to ensure opportunities for adventure and exploration are the best possible, taking into account the prevailing weather and wildlife activity. Expedition Team members scheduled for this voyage are subject to change or cancellation.

Included in cruise fare:
  • 1 night pre cruise hotel
  • Transfers (between airport, hotel and ship)
  • Guided Zodiac, land and sea tours, and shoreside activities led by the Expeditions Team
  • Enrichment lectures by a highly qualified Expeditions Team
  • Spacious suites
  • Butler service in every suite
  • Unlimited Free Wifi
  • Personalised service – nearly one crew member for every guest
  • Choice of restaurants, diverse cuisine, open-seating dining
  • Beverages in-suite and throughout the ship, including champagne, select wines and spirits
  • In-suite dining and room service
  • Onboard entertainment
  • Onboard gratuities

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