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Best time to cruise the Mediterranean

Take a Mediterranean cruise when the weather is warm and there are fewer people.

A cruise on the Mediterranean Sea offers a fusion of romance and adventure.

Yet, because of the huge number of cruise ships that sail through the Mediterranean, the crowds that come with them can quickly diminish that romance and adventure you’re looking for.

To help you get the most enjoyment from your cruise, we’ve sorted out the best times to set sail for the historical ports, idyllic isles and picturesque towns you’ll visit.

Best time to cruise the Mediterranean

April, May, September and October

Why?

April to October is high season when you can choose from a lot of cruise companies and itineraries. Tourism hits its peak from June to August because of school holidays. Those months also often see uncomfortably high temperatures in some destinations. Prices skyrocket and many cruises are sold out several months in advance.

However, during the spring season of April to May, and the fall months of September and October, the Mediterranean Sea is at its best for sailing, with a pleasant, warm climate. This is ideal for travelling on a cruise and taking advantage of outdoor leisure facilities such as swimming pools, as well as excursions at the destinations.


Overview

The region around the Mediterranean Sea has its own Mediterranean Climate with four seasons. This climate is characterised by moderate temperatures throughout the winter (5ºC to 20ºC) and dry summers and hot (25ºC to 40ºC).

The high season for a Mediterranean cruise begins from April and ends in October while the low season lasts from November to March.

Weather and prices

Best time to cruise the Mediterranean, weatherwise. The shoulder-season months (April, May, September and October) enjoy a warm, sunny climate which is ideal for cruising.

Cheapest time to cruise the Mediterranean: During the winter months, you can find the best prices and smaller crowds, but with cooler weather conditions. If you’re not fussed by less-favourable weather conditions, this is the best time to bag a bargain.


Best time to cruise in...

  • Western Mediterranean:Spring (April to May) and fall (September to October) are the best months to go for a Western Mediterranean cruise as you’ll still enjoy pleasant weather, but avoid the hoards of tourists that come from June to August.
  • Eastern Mediterranean:The shoulder months of May and September are the most enjoyable for Eastern Mediterranean cruises. Hot temperatures in the Eastern Mediterranean add another reason to avoid the peak summer months of July and August. Be aware, however, that some of the smaller businesses and restaurants on Mediterranean islands off Italy, Greece and Croatia are only open during the peak seasons so April and October may offer fewer options.

Cruise deals

Up to 19% off select sailings + up to $800 onboard credit Valid for cruise on select dates with Oceania Cruises. Includes meals and onboard entertainment. Destinations include Alaska, Vancouver, Papeete, Seattle and more. Onboard credit amount varies based on length of cruise and cabin type booked. T&C's apply.

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10-night Mediterranean cruises from US$787 + 10% off shore excursions

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Valid on select dates and sailings with Costa Cruises. Includes 10% off shore excursions and Costa exclusive amenities. T&C's apply.

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4-night Bahamas cruises US$57 + up to US$500 onboard credit

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Valid on select dates and sailings with Norwegian Cruise Line. Departs from Miami. Includes up to US$500 to spend onboard, 10% off shore excursions and free open bar. T&C's apply.

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Up to £200 pp cashback + free all-inclusive drinks upgrade

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Valid for travel on select 2018-19 sailings. Choose from a complimentary all-inclusive drinks upgrade or up to £200 pp shore tour credit. T&C's apply.

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Up to 75% off + up to US$500 onboard credit

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Valid on select dates of sailings with Holland America. Includes stateroom upgrades, US$500 to spend onboard and up to 10% off select shore excursions. T&C's apply.

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Up to 45% off with Royal Caribbean

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Valid for sailings on select dates. Destinations include Sydney, Perth, Hobart, Singapore, Venice, Tahiti and more. T&C's apply.

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3-night Europe cruises from US$229 + up to US$500 onboard credit

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Valid on select dates with MSC Cruises. Includes up to US$500 to spend onboard and 10% off shore excursions. T&C's apply.

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Up to 35% off sailing adventures and expeditions

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Valid on select tours from March 2018 - August 2018. Destinations include India, Caribbean, Antarctica, Arctic, Thailand, Croatia, Norway, Greece and more.

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Let's Ferry Let's Ferry
Greece: €20 passenger tickets with Blue Star Ferries

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Valid on select dates of sailings. Destinations include Mykonos, Paros, Santorini, Karpathos, Leros, Samos, Lesvos, Kea and more. T&C's apply.

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Up to 25% off + 50% off second guests with Azamara

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Enjoy 16-nights of sailing with Azamara. The route is Melbourne-Auckland. Valid for travel from 6-22 January 2019. T&C's apply.

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