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The Mediterranean destinations the crowds haven’t discovered yet

Viking Ocean Ship, Valleta, Malta.

Viking Ocean Ship, Valleta, Malta. Photo: Viking

Intimate, exclusive and off-the-beaten track are not phrases normally associated with a Mediterranean cruise – unless it’s a Viking voyage.

Specialising in sophisticated smaller ship journeys for thinking travellers, Viking has applied its ethos to a region that usually conjures images of crowds, queues and clashing selfie sticks.

Viking’s Mediterranean cruises are carefully curated to instead steer towards untrampled beauty spots, authentic experiences and privileged access excursions.

With no kids and no casinos, these are journeys for travellers who love to learn and experience the places they’re visiting.

And with the company’s Explorer Sale on until March 28 and offering $3000 worth of flight credits per couple for 2025 and 2026 ocean voyages, there has never been a better time to secure a berth.

Here’s just a handful of the untapped destinations on offer.

Bari is famous for its traditional whitewashed Trulli houses. Photo: Getty

BARI, Italy

Located at the top of the “boot heel” on the Adriatic coast, Bari is known for its fresher-than-fresh seafood, UNESCO-listed white stone Trulli houses and its 1132 Norman Swabian castle.

Don’t leave without: Doing a walking tour that will showcase the city’s gourmet credentials, and show you just why this stunning region rivals the Amalfi Coast and Tuscany for sheer beauty.

Think honey-coloured stone houses, medieval lanes, a lovely waterfront and dramatic piazzas.

Itineraries: 29-day Mediterranean’s Iconic Shores, 15-day Italy, the Adriatic and Greece.

KOTOR, Montenegro

The picturesque capital of Montenegro offers soaring limestone cliffs, a fjord-like “ria”, or bay and a UNESCO-listed old town.

Don’t leave without: Exclusive to Viking passengers, attending a concert at St Nicholas Franciscan Monastery in Perast, a seaside town of baroque palaces.

Guests can enjoy a guitar recital by two acclaimed local musicians, Darko Nikcevic and Srdjan Bulatovic, over glasses of champagne.

Itineraries: 8-day Venice, the Adriatic and Greece, 10-day Empires of the Mediterranean.

Star Tower Bay, Kotor

Star Tower Bay, Kotor. Photo: Viking

MONTE CARLO, Monaco

Viking’s small ship manoeuvrability means you’ll be in the heart of the action when you berth at the Monaco Yacht Club, among the superyachts and supermodels.

From here you can explore the medieval quarter, “The Rock”, at the base of the Maritime Alps and discover why Grace Kelly fell in love with the place, and the people.

Don’t leave without: A visit to the Prince Palace of Monaco. Viking passengers can enjoy exclusive privileged access to the residence of the royal Grimaldi family with its chapel, mirror gallery, state apartments and Red Room.

Itineraries: 13-day Mediterranean Odyssey, 29-day Mediterranean Iconic Shores.

Princes Palace, Monte Carlo.

Princes Palace, Monte Carlo. Photo: Viking

VALLETTA, Malta

Constructed by the Knights of Malta to mark their great victory at the Great Siege of 1565, this UNESCO-recognised city has elegant houses lining narrow cobblestone streets and memorable sea views.

Don’t leave without: A special musical event at St John’s Co-Cathedral where you’ll also be able to admire Caravaggio’s famous 1608 painting The Beheading of John the Baptist as you enjoy the concert.

You will then be treated to an exclusive concert before walking back to your coach and returning to your ship.

Itineraries: 16-day Malta, Morocco and the Mediterranean.

St Johns Cathedral, Valletta

St John’s Co-Cathedral, Valletta. Photo: Viking

CORSICA, France

Napoleon Bonaparte’s island birthplace is where history buffs can trace the French Emperor’s footsteps.

Visit the cathedral where he was christened, the fine arts Fesch Museum, established by his uncle, and Casa Bonaparte, his family home for centuries and now a museum of artefacts of his young life.

Don’t leave without: Exploring Corsica’s culinary culture, which owes as much to Italy as it does to France.

Discover the best of local produce – from honey to almonds – while exploring the landscape of this beautiful island. Or spend a day with your Viking Executive Chef.

You’ll start at a local market and help choose items for that night’s menu, then return to ship to watch and learn as the team prepares and plates your selections before enjoying a private dinner with members of the culinary team at The Kitchen Table.

Itinerary: 16-day Malta, Morocco and the Mediterranean.

Explore Viking’s voyages here.

Topics: Viking
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