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If you’re looking to plan a European cruise, but aren’t sure which cruise ports are a must to have in the itinerary, we’re here to help. Here are three cruise ports in Europe, Southern Californians will love.

Southern Californians have a wide range of activities to spend their day doing thanks to a variety of vibrant cities, chill beach towns, and outdoor activities. A cruise stop in Naples, Italy will also provide multiple choices for how to spend your day. If you’re looking for the city life, stay in Naples and meander down its bustling roads. Explore the shops lining the squares and streets, and be sure to try the pizza. For a historic way to spend the day, opt for an excursion to Pompeii, the ancient city that was preserved in ash after a volcano eruption thousands of years ago. Those who love charming beach towns will enjoy traveling down the Amalfi Coast to the nearby coastal town of Salerno — one of the prettiest seaside villages in the world. In addition, just like Southern California has an island playground with Catalina Island, Naples is a short distance from the island of Capri, where you can enjoy hikes and sailboat rides. If you love natural phenomenons, be sure to check out the Blue Grotto, a cave accessible by boat which is a lit with an iridescent blue hue.

Barcelona, Spain is a cosmopolitan European city known for cuisine, beaches, and a distinct culture (sound familiar, Southern Californians?). When your cruise ship docks in Barcelona for the day, get ready for a whirlwind day of sights, sounds, and flavors. Wander down the massive boardwalk to see the sparkling ocean then venture into the city center along the famous street Las Ramblas where you can do shopping and stop in one of the many cafes to try Barcelona’s famous tapas, an assortment of delicious appetizer-type dishes. Other must-dos in Barcelona include visiting the Sagrada Familia cathedral and other works done by the architect Gaudi and taking in a flamenco show to see the style of dance Barcelona is known for.

If you live in Southern California you probably love the ocean and beaches and Santorini has both, but with a different twist than you’re used to in SoCal. Santorini is a small Greek island that overlooks the ocean from a stunning cliff made from a powerful volcanic eruption thousands of years ago. This cliff is called the caldera and from it you can see incredible views of the surrounding sea and the partially submerged — and still active — volcano that Santorini forms a crescent around. On the other side of Santorini you’ll find the beaches, most of which are made up of black tinged sand thanks to the remnants of volcanic rock and ash found in Santorini’s earth. The beaches look very different from what you’re used to back home, but they’re still ideal for a day of relaxation and fun in the sun.

Which of these cruise ports in Europe do you most want to visit?



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