As we all get our 2011 travel plans started, I thought it would be helpful for those who haven’t been to a certain area in Europe to blog about what to expect accompanied by an itinerary as an example over the next few weeks. An article for this series will be posted every Tuesday, starting tomorrow.
Today is an introduction: what you should expect depending on the time of year you cruise the Mediterranean. Tomorrow, we’ll go into depth and visit the Eastern part of this beautiful region, focusing on the chosen itinerary’s ports.
The most popular time to cruise to the Mediterranean region is in the summer, during the months of June, July and August (high season). The weather is dry and it’s hot (up to 100F/40C). There’s lots of choice for cruises as well as air. All museums, restaurants, shops, and markets are open. However, if you’re easily irritated by the heat and crowds, it may not be the best time for to go. There will be line ups to enter museums and historical sights, and crowds almost everywhere. Also, supply and demand takes effect during this time: prices tend to be higher for cruises, air, hotels, and restaurants as a result of more people wanting to travel during this season.
Spring or Fall Travel
The travel industry calls the months of April, May and September, October the shoulder season. The disadvantages of summer travel are the advantages in spring and fall travel and vice versa. There are less crowds and the weather, in my opinion, is more pleasant (70-80F/20-30C). There’s lots of blue skies and not much rain in May, September and October. The cost of cruises, air, hotels and restaurants tend to be lower than in summer months. And there are just enough people that sights and museums stay open without the hassle of waiting in line too long.
Low season is from November to March. For price conscious travelers, this is the best time for you to go. It’s also great for those who prefer cooler weather (50-60F/15-20C) and no crowds. Because not as many people are traveling at this time, beaches, a lot of outdoor cafes and many restaurants are closed.
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