Filed under: Luxury Travel & Hotels
Some 2,500 years ago, the warm waters between Greece and what is now Turkey were filled with the warring fleets of Persia's King Xerxes and his Greek foes. These days, the ships sailing through the Aegean are of a much more peaceful variety-none more majestic than the vessels of Sea Cloud, a nominee for a Luxist award in the best summer cruises category.
One of Sea Cloud's most popular itineraries takes guests from Athens through the Greek Isles to Turkey and back again. The eight-day trip includes stops at Delos, an entire island designated as a UNESCO World Heritage site; Rhodes, where the Palace of the Grand Master still stands; and Bodrum, the Turkish town that was once home to the Mausoleum of Halicarnassus, one of the original seven wonders of the world.
Gallery: Sea Cloud Cruises
For those wishing to venture farther East, Sea Cloud's Athens-Cyprus trip includes stops at Knossos, island home of the fabled Minotaur; Latakia and Aleppo, one of the world's oldest continually-inhabited cities; and Tartarus, home to the Krak de Chevaliers, a Christian castle from the time of the first crusade. The trip terminates in the Cypriot city of Lanarca.
Both itineraries (which start at $3,995 per person and go all the way up to $7,995 person, not counting an early booking discount of $500) feature one of two ships: the Sea Cloud and the Sea Cloud II. The latter bristles with teak and brass, holds 94 people and is sure to instill envy in any observer-perhaps even King Xerxes himself.
Vote for the Summer Cruise that you think is the best of breed. The winner will be announced on September 1st.