The Mediterranean including the Southern part of the Mediterranean Sea is a busy holiday resort. It incorporates several countries: Greece, Croatia, Italy, France, Spain and a part of Portugal. However, their culture is different, their philosophy is quite similar: the love of freedom and life. Of course, they are exciting destinations for boatmen too. So what to do in the Mediterranean? Here are some tips.
- What to do in each Mediterranean region?
- Gastronomy for you!
- What to do in the Mediterranean and what is a must?
First, the most important thing in all 6 countries is to relax, take the rhythm of the people and release bad thoughts from your everyday life. Enjoy the historical sights, the spectacular landscape; moreover, try mouth-watering dishes and drinks as much as you can. By the way, this region is full of them. So don’t worry if you have not had enough time to try out all of them, insert the missing destination(s) into your next holiday.
Greece, a wonderland
Greece has a variable landscape with several mountains and rivers, and it is rich in natural wonders. Let’s see some islands you can’t miss.
Crete, Europe’s cultural centre, is Greece’s largest island. There are historical sites everywhere on Crete. In addition, the hospitality of the locals makes your stay quite memorable. Its most popular site is the Palace of Knossos that was erected in the Bronze Age.
Corfu belongs to the Ionian islands of Greece. It is said to be the greenest island due to its wonderful green forests. As a result, it is a beloved destination for tourists. Even though the coastal promenades and natural beauties are also marvellous.
Santorini, by the way, is famous for its snow-white houses with blue roofs. Above that, there is a buzzing nightlife too.
If you are wondering what to do in the Mediterranean, Rhodes, the most famous island of the Aegean, is always a great choice. It’s a huge building, the Colossus, is one of the great wonders of the ancient world.
Boatmen also prefer the Greek islands; yachts can be even rent and a circle can be made around these gorgeous lands.
The unforgettable Croatia
Croatia plays a significant role in the yachting industry. Its pleasant nature, beautiful islands attract many people year to year.
The Istrian destinations like Pula and Rab continually top annual polls of the best holidays. Rab is a really cosy town with historical sites, famous local dishes and hospitality.
In addition, there are several villages and towns in the Kvarner Bay. The island of Krk is also here, it is accessible either by boat or on a huge bridge. The Opatija Riviera is a stretch of coastline welcoming lots of visitors; in its port, there is an opportunity for boat rental.
Adventure in gastronomy, yes, it’s Italy!
One Italian tour is not enough to explore all its cultural and natural wonders. The most well-known coastal towns are the following:
From the gondolas to the capital city
Venice, the queen of the Adriatic, is famous for its lagoons and gondolas. I guess everybody has seen once pictures of the holy pigeons on the Saint Mark square.
The next important coastal town is Bari with its industrial and educational activities. Its old town offers cultural sights too such as the Basilica of Saint Nicholas, the Cathedral of San Sabino and the Palazzo del Sedile.
Rome is a real historical treasure. This place must be visited once by everybody. However, you need just a few days to explore the historic centre and the Vatican, a lifetime is not enough to discover the secrets.
Naples is South-Italy’s largest city. Its historic centre has been listed on the UNESCO World Heritage Sites since 1995. The cave system under the city and the villas of the Vesuvius built under the reign of the Bourbons make it an unforgettable experience. The Naples dialect is claimed to be the best regional one in the country.
Palermo is the largest city of Sicily; moreover, its architecture is quite significant since the European Norman architectural centre can be found here. Although the region is rumoured about mafia stories there are beautiful churches like the Palermo Cathedral, the Church of the Martorana and the Church of San Cataldo.
If you are longing for a sheer sea experience, rent a boat in Sicily, Naples or even in Rome and experience the real freedom.
Luxury, delights –two typical features of South-France. For instance, Cannes, where you can rent different types of yachts or just sunbathe on its cosy beach while drinking a cocktail in a bar. It is a city full of events and buzzing social life.
For holiday Bandol with its small population (8000 people) is also a great choice, and its well-equipped port attracts many boatmen.
In contrast, Marseille is a lot busier. As the second largest city of South-France, it deals with big traffic of vessels. What to do in the Mediterranean, exactly in Marseille? Check first the Chateau d’lf: The Count of Monte Cristo Castle and a splendid fort.
The versatile Spain
Spain, the country of excellent wines and olive oil, is located on the Iberian Peninsula. This is one of the region’s most exciting destinations. Here the city of Barcelona is an important centre. There are many exciting things to visit. In addition, its markets and busy life appeal to tourists spending a few days there. During your street walk, the ghosts of Picasso and Gaudi accompany you while sports fans can watch the match of FC Barcelona in the big stadium.
The other city on the east coast of Spain is Valencia. Actually, this is Spain’s third biggest city. The Silk Market is the main monument of the city and the masterpiece of civil Gothic architecture. Not to mention that its coast is the best part of the city.
Murcia is the next which is less busy than the above ones. But the highest level of sunlight on the Iberian Peninsula has been measured here. As a matter of fact, it was built on a 2nd-century-old theatre. Consequently, history lovers can find pleasure in its old buildings.
Portugal hides a bunch of natural beauties
Portugal, Europe’s southernmost country, has only two neighbours: Spain and the Atlantic-ocean. Many people are interested in its unique natural wonders.
It is home to special natural beauties such as Porto, whose city centre is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The list is endless with its pleasant atmosphere, its cathedral, the Stock Exchange Palace, the Maria Pia railway bridge attributed to Gustave Eiffel, and the Concert Hall etc.
Its capital and largest city, Lisbon, is recognised from its typical tile houses and special atmosphere. The top bars of the panorama lookout towers, the Miradouros, provide several entertainment facilities. In addition, the Saint George’s Church and the Cathedral of St. Jerome are just two from its cultural sights for history lovers.
When you are asked what to do in the Mediterranean, just tell you are going to lick all your fingers. This region guarantees an ultimate Mediterranean culinary experience. The meals are really spicy, though, not fatty since the main ingredients are vegetables and meat/fish. Check the most typical meals region by region.
From gyros to pizza
The basic of the Greek cuisine is olive, tomato, courgette, onion, goat cheese and ewe cheese. When it comes to meat, they prefer lamb and chicken. The traditional sauce is tzatziki which is a mixture of garlic, cucumber and yoghurt. Consume fresh made original gyros; because its taste will be much more different than in any fast food restaurants.
However, the Croatian meals are not so dominant than the Italian or French ones; they still preserve the Mediterranean features. Moreover, the Turkish, Italian, Greek and Hungarian cuisines have also had an effect on them. Their favourite ingredient is fish, mainly tuna, mackerel, sardine or anchovy. Prlolica, the most typical meat dish, is beef fried in oil and garlic.
Let’s move on to the Italian cuisine which is fairly variable; everybody can find his/her savoury. Pasta is the most famous of all made in all kinds of forms. The pizza has conquered the whole world. Not to mention the profiteroles, the Italian ice-cream and tiramisu stemming from this region.
Just tapas and cheese
The French cuisine is equal to art. The dishes alter in each region, even though there are typical ingredients like an oyster, goose liver, cheese, onion and delicious bread.
The Spanish meals have Moorish and Roman roots. Typical ingredients are pork, potato, tomato, bean, olive, paprika and of course, fish. A famous dish is called tapas consumed before dinner. Usually, Spanish people drink wine or beer beside it. The most traditional meal is paella. It is a mixture of rice, crocus and diverse sea fruit. For visitors with the sweet tooth, the churro is recommended which is a crunchy doughnut dipped in chocolate sauce.
Portuguese eat 5 times instead of 3 times a day. Their beloved dishes are sardine, codfish and rice; the latter can be cooked as a dessert. For another culinary experience try the Pastéis de Belém, a vanilla dessert, and a real Porto wine.
The list of what to do in the Mediterranean is endless. Here is a short collection.
- Cruising among the islands of Greece. Exploring the Greek islands is an indescribable experience. Organize once a round trip by boat and allow yourself to be enchanted by the incredible view of the Greek world.
- Cooking course from master chefs in Italy. When you are in Italy, take part in a culinary adventure. Generally, it starts with shopping on the market, then cooking and of course, having a great meal time.
- World of waters in Spain. Visit Oceanographic Valencia, the famous local oceanarium, which offers entertainment for children and adults alike.
- Having dinner in the Fado restaurant in Portugal. You can watch inspiring fado shows with guitar music among the courses. Fado is a music genre mixing the Spanish and Italian world of music, though, a bit mournful.
All members of the family can find their own pleasure and excitement during a trip in the Mediterranean. The famous sights and excellent dishes guarantee a great time for all of you.
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