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Fall under the spell of the Mediterranean’s key sites during an 8-day cruise offered by PONANT. With Athens as the departure point, board Le Jacques-Cartier for an unforgettable sailing experience discovering exceptional islands and cities. Your cruise will begin with the exploration of two of Greece’s major sites, from Napflion: the Mycenae ruins and the Epidaurus theatre, both UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Le Jacques-Cartier will then head towards Paros. Nested in the heart of the Cyclades archipelago, this island reputed for its sublime white marble and offers a genuine concentration of Greek beauty, from olive groves to ancient monuments. You will discover Delos, a minuscule island in the Cyclades archipelago. According to mythology, Apollo was born here. Like an open-air museum, Delos offers unique testimony of the civilisations that followed one another in the Aegean world. A little further north, you will arrive on Mykonos, with its iconic windmills, beaches, countless churches and whitewashed houses. Following a stop on the island of Patmos, Le Jacques-Cartier will leave Greece to reach Kusadasi in Turkey. An old fishing village with history going back 5,000 years, not far from the Ephesus site, the town is now one of the country’s most famous seaside resorts. You will discover the volcanic island of Limnos, near the Dardanelles Strait. Protected during Antiquity by Hephaestus, the god of fire, this green and lush island has now become one of Greece’s major seaside resorts. Then you will reach Istanbul, a rich historical UNESCO listed site, at the end of a magnificent cruise.
The Greek capital city is located on the edge of the Saronic gulf, in the east of the country. It bears a plural name in reference to the first villages that surround the Acropolis. You will be enchanted by the rocky plateau presided by its monuments listed as UNESCO World Heritage. In the city below, you can visit some of the liveliest districts in Athens: Plaka, with its maze of colourful streets, and where, in the evenings the drifting aroma of moussaka and garlic prawns will tickle your taste buds. The National Archaeological museum and the Cycladic Art Museum are also some of the city’s key attractions and allow visitors to discover Athens’ cultural past.
The engaging town of Nafplion is staggered up green hillsides of the Argolic Gulf, to the east of the Peloponnese. Do not be surprised by its extremely varied cultural heritage. Some of the must-see visits are the ancient agora on the plateau of Akronafplia, Italianate arcades in Syntagma square as well as the baroque fortress of Palamidi on a hillside of the same name. At the top of the hill, views of the gulf and the surrounding mountains are simply awesome. If you want to chill out by the water’s edge, walk along the Arvanitia promenade to a beautiful creek in the shade of cedars and cypresses.
Famous for its white marble, the island of Paros is located in the Cyclades. Along the quays of Parikia, its main town, you’ll see Byzantine churches and neoclassical buildings. To make the most of the turquoise waters, you can stop over in Naoussa. This little fishing port is bounded by a very beautiful cove.
This legendary Cyclades island of Delos stands just a few miles southwest of Mykonos. The ceremonial solemnity of this ancient holy sanctuary will not leave you indifferent. The sheer size and importance of this UNESCO World Heritage site which covers over half of the island is thrilling in itself. From the Stoa of Antigonos, the Terrace of the Lions, to the carved marble animal statues, you will make discovery after discovery, against a backdrop of the Aegean stretching to the horizon. The theatre steps on the hillside are a particularly good place from which to enjoy the expansive view. Nicknamed “little Venice”, Mykonos is famous for its Alefkandra district where houses are built right on the water’s edge. Their multi-coloured loggias are emblematic of this Cyclades island, as are the pelicans and windmills. You can get close up to the birds on the quaysides of the old port. Up on the hillside, you can see the windmill sails turning. In the cobbled streets of the pedestrian centre, bougainvillea bedeck immaculate facades. As you weave in and out of the little streets, snatches of coastline will undoubtedly call you to the island’s beaches, the quietest of which can be found on the northern coast.
Patmos is one of the legendary must-see islands in the Dodecanese. This is where Saint John resided, presumed author of the last book in the Bible. The cave of the Apocalypse and the Saint John Monastery are dedicated to him. These sites, which are listed by UNESCO as World Heritage, are located at the top of a hillside planted with vines and orchards. On the shore, the crystalline coves of Kambos and Lampi offer absolutely gorgeous swimming areas.
The attractive seaside resort of Kusadasi is located in a gulf on the western coast of Turkey. You can bathe there in clear waters or stroll along the coastal walk, in the shade of palms. In the historical district, you can take a mosey down the narrow streets and explore the colourful shops in the bazaar. Close by, the Ephesus archaeological site in the hillsides provides an opportunity to discover the ruins of one of the most famous cities of Antiquity.
A volcanic island located near the Dardanelles Strait, Limnos was venerated during Antiquity. Legend has it that Hephaestus, the god of fire, had his forge here. Now one of Greece’s major seaside resorts, Lemnos offers its visitors many superb sandy beaches. It is also home to several archaeological sites, such as the towers of Kastro, an ancient acropolis fortified by the Venetians, or the neolithic site of Poliochni and the city of Hephaestia. Renowned for its olives, fruits, wheat and honey, and for the authenticity of its inhabitants, Lemnos is also known for the quality of its restaurants, ideal for tasting typical Greek dishes. The Dardanelles Strait is an emblematic, 61 km-long waterway connecting the Aegean Sea with the Sea of Marmara. It is strategic for controlling passage between the Mediterranean Sea and the Black Sea. Like the Bosporus, or Strait of Istanbul, it separates Europe from Asia. A surface current flows along it, while a more saline undercurrent flows in the opposite direction. Along the strait, you will be able to admire hilly landscapes and arid lowlands brightened by fields and groves of olive trees.
Located on the Bosphorus, Istanbul is one of the most beautiful of all Turkish cities. Named Byzantium when founded by the Greeks, and then Constantinople under the Roman Empire, this city is steeped in history and, for this reason, is a listed UNESCO World Heritage site. Located on Sultanahmet hill, the great Blue Mosque, the mysterious Hagia Sophia and the vast Topkapi palace and its countless mosaics, dominate the Marmara Sea. In the Beyazit district, the Grand Bazaar allows to discover elegant covered passages. A little further away, delicate aroma of loukoum and spices will draw the visitors’ attention at the Egyptian Bazaar.
Itineraries are subject to change.
Vessel Type: Luxury Passenger Capacity: 92 cabins Built: 2018/2019 Featuring innovative and environmentally-friendly equipment, elegantly designed staterooms, spacious suites with large windows, and lounge areas that open onto the outside, this new limited-capacity yacht boasting just 92 staterooms and suites will offer you a truly unique cruising experience. As the sixth ship in a new series that remains true to the Ponant spirit, Le Jacques Cartier will embody the unique atmosphere that is the cruise line’s hallmark: a subtle blend of refinement, intimacy and comfort. Aboard this ship that flies the French flag, you will experience the incomparable pleasure of an intimate cruise, with the possibility of exploring an ever-increasing range of destinations in an ethnic-chic ambiance with luxury service. Experience a luxurious setting where the accent is on authenticity and passion for travel. RESTAURANTS As it is an essential part of French culture, gastronomy will naturally have pride of place aboard this new ship. To the back of Deck 4, you will find a 260 m² panoramic restaurant which can accommodate all of our passengers in a single sitting. Designed differently to that on our other ships, this dining area, which opens onto the outside, will have a buffet of salads, desserts and cheeses at your disposal. Our discreet and attentive crew will provide table service for hot meals. In a relaxed atmosphere, an outdoor grill on Deck 3 will serve grilled meats with a variety of salads and desserts. PUBLIC AREAS Le Jacques Cartier has many common areas that are designed and equipped to meet all of your needs while preserving the intimacy of each passenger. A 140 m² reception area includes: A reception/concierge desk, An excursions desk, The ship’s administrative services, The sales office, manned by our Guest Relations Officer, Our 50 m² boutique which sells clothing, jewellery, beauty products, postcards and various accessories, Toilets accessible to passengers with reduced mobility. A new hydraulic platform with adjustable height provides: Easier boarding than on any other cruise ship, Easier Zodiac embarkation and disembarkation for expeditions, Easier access to the sea for swimming and practising various water sports such as kayaking or paddle-boarding. A pool deck offering: A pool with a panoramic view, equipped with a counter-current swimming system, A pleasant solarium, An outdoor bar and lounge with armchairs and sofas. A 200 m² main lounge which can accommodate all of our passengers to share convivial moments and to host activities organised during the day or evening. Lastly, a theatre that seats 188, equipped with: The latest sound and lighting technology, A LED wall as the stage backdrop, for the projection of high-resolution images and videos.
• A cruise to discover the finest ancient sites of Greece, with one port of call in Turkey. • Numerous UNESCO World Heritage Sites: the Mycenae ruins and the Epidaurus theatre from Napflion, the sacred island of Delos, the monastery of Saint John and the Cave of the Apocalypse in Patmos, the historical sites of Ephesus from Kusadasi. • A varied cruise, including lively cities, historic and cultural sites and beaches of unique charm. • Sailing in the Dardanelles.