THE PIONEERS OF SMALL SHIP CRUISING
The unique brand of discovery cruising coupled with A-Rosa's superior fleet of river cruisers means you can enjoy the heart of Europe with many of the ingredients that mark out Swan's traditional ocean-going voyages.
As well as your own Swan Hellenic Cruise Director, you'll travel with a distinguished Guest Speaker. Swan Hellenic also includes flight (or train travel on the Rhône or Rhine), an inclusive shore excursion programme, all meals, entertainment and gratuities on board.
Ask many a seasoned cruise enthusiast where they've been and they'll mention the Mediterranean, the Caribbean or one of the World's great oceans. Yet, even for the more discerning traveller, many have yet to catch on to a destination without equal – the Rivers of Europe.
The joy of travelling through Europe – so close to home – by way of its rivers and waterways is all too easily overlooked. When you find a combination of destinations, variety and value that match Swan's cruise philosophy in a place so full of history and heritage, the mix is sure to prove irresistible. With cruises that follow the Danube, the Rhône and the Rhine, Swan's River Cruises combine all the ingredients for a holiday that is as relaxing as it is fascinating.
SWAN HELLENIC LIFE ON BOARD
Refreshed and updated, Minerva has lost none of the charm that has made her such a firm favourite with the most loyal passengers. Inside, you'll warm to the congenial atmosphere, panelled rooms, the glint of brass, deep pile carpets and welcoming, buttoned leather sofas.
Tastefully Decorated - Impeccably Finished Onboard Swan Hellenic
Soft, subtle lighting and carefully chosen fabrics also extend to the cabins, all recently refurbished. A wide range of accommodation choices includes suites with private balconies, deluxe and superior outside cabins with picture windows, comfortable inside cabins that don't miss out on essentials like ample storage space or on refinements such as bathrobes, binoculars and books.
Places You Can Hide Away Or Stretch Out Onboard Swan Hellenic
More informal is the Veranda that opens onto the Pool Deck, letting you dine alfresco. Other favourite daytime venues include the conservatory-style Shackleton's Bar with its cane chairs and potted palms. You can hide away in the Library where newspapers, an extensive collection of fiction, books on the destinations they visit, as well as games and assorted jigsaws are among the most popular diversions on days at sea. There's also an internet facility to keep in touch with home.
Another is Minerva's expansive teak promenade deck, so reminiscent of the golden age of cruising. It's the perfect vantage point from which to spy new coastlines, to photograph bird life in Antarctica or gaze out at Mediterranean sunsets. Aft, the promenade leads to the sun deck where you can lie back and relax or take a cooling dip in the pool.
Travelling Alone Onboard Swan Hellenic?
Many of the passengers travel unaccompanied and find the friendly Swan Hellenic style of cruising the perfect way to see the world. There's a wide choice of accommodation in Standard Inside or Outside cabins. These prove very popular and we strongly recommend you book early. Once the single occupancy cabins have been sold, twin cabins might be available for single use, but they may not be able to offer them at the special single occupancy rate.
Guest Speakers, Entertainers & Workshops Onboard Swan Hellenic
Each day you spend on board Minerva promises to be as memorable as the days you spend ashore. Relax and absorb Minerva's unique shipboard ambience, savouring the country house atmosphere that so distinguishes Swan Hellenic's style of cruising.
One of the main attractions of a Swan Hellenic cruise is the calibre of their Guest Speakers, each chosen for their expertise and for their passion in communicating their specialist subject. Swan Hellenic Guest Speakers are respected historians, classicists, archaeologists, vulcanologists, geologists, military historians, botanists, art historians, theologians, ambassadors, writers and broadcasters – to name but a few. Three or four Guest Speakers accompany each cruise.
In addition to their Guest Speaker programme they also invite special guests to join Minerva to deliver after dinner talks on selected cruises. These can include highly regarded politicians, authors, actors, broadcasters and journalists, each specially selected to appeal to Swan Hellenic passengers.
Swan Hellenic's varied evening entertainment includes classical concerts, operatic and theatrical performances, light-hearted quizzes and films, rather than grand stage shows and casinos. After a leisurely meal in one of Minerva's two on board restaurants, relax with a drink and enjoy your evening entertainment in the Darwin Lounge – including, when Minerva is in port – occasional performances by entertainers from ashore.
Leisurely days at sea provide the time and space to learn something new, or to develop existing skills. Selected cruises feature one of a range of workshops, each led by specially invited tutors. You might choose to develop your Bridge skills, attend a watercolour class, join a singing workshop, hone your writing skills, explore Tai Chi or relax in a yoga class.
SWAN HELLENIC DRESS CODE: SEMI-FORMAL
What to Wear Onboard Swan Hellenic Cruise Ships
As a general rule, for days on board and ashore, summer clothing/casual wear is the order of the day. It should be light, comfortable and easy to care for. A sweater and jacket for cooler evenings and a light raincoat are also advisable.
Evening Dress Onboard Swan Hellenic Cruise Ships
In the evening, there is a recommended dress code and passengers are invited to wear 'black tie' and evening dresses for formal nights such as the Captain's Welcome Cocktail Party and Dinner (normally two/three 'black tie' evenings per cruise). A lounge suit or blazer and tie are also acceptable – the choice is yours. On other evenings the dress code will be semi-formal or smart/casual. Details will be given in the daily programme on board. Gentlemen are required to wear jacket and tie in the Dining Room for evening meals.
In certain countries, shorts, short skirts, bare arms and shoulders will not be appreciated locally and you may be prohibited entry to certain sites. Advice will be given beforehand on board.
SWAN HELLENIC DINING & TIPS
Enjoy exquisite dining with a Swan Hellenic Cruise
There's a sense of occasion every evening in the elegant Dining Room. Open from early until late, there are no sittings or seating plans on board. You're free to dine on your own, or with newly-found friends. Just let the Maître d' know your preference on the day. Menus include gourmet choices and often feature dishes that reflect the destinations to which they travel. Fresh ingredients are brought on board at many ports. Dishes are cooked to order and the wine waiters will be happy to recommend labels from the extensive wine list.
Dining Arrangements Onboard Swan Hellenic Cruise
Breakfast, lunch and dinner are arranged on an open sitting basis and may be taken in the Dining Room or the Veranda. Opening times will vary according to the daily programme.
Swan Hellenic Tips & Gratuities
All gratuities to staff, both on board and ashore while on Minerva, are included in your cruise fare.
SWAN HELLENIC SPECIAL NEEDS
Swan Hellenic will always try to accommodate passengers with special needs. However, the following conditions apply:
Health Care Companions
All passengers with special needs must be self-sufficient and must be accompanied by a passenger who will take full responsibility for any assistance needed during the cruise and in the event of an emergency.
Regulations vary from airline to airline, but some will refuse to carry women who will be 28 weeks pregnant on the date of return travel.
Passengers confined to wheelchairs must provide their own collapsible chair. Please note that in cabins aboard the Minerva there is a 5" riser to bathrooms and some door sills, except in cabin no.'s 4038, 4039, 6011 and 7011, which have been adapted for wheelchair use.
However, they must point out that at all ports of call featured in the cruise programme, passengers are required to walk up or down the gangway when embarking or disembarking the ship. Some ports require tenders to go ashore and conditions may preclude a wheelchair passenger from leaving the vessel; this decision must be made by the ship's Captain and is binding. Passengers should also be aware that facilities for the handicapped in some destinations may be very limited. Getting about once on board Minerva is relatively easy. However, you may find certain parts of the ship inaccessible.
They can usually make provisions for special diets provided that sufficient notice is given. A vegetarian choice is available onboard ship and vegetarian meals are also available on flights. They will make every effort to satisfy your request, although this cannot be guaranteed.
Smoking is only permitted in designated areas on the open decks. Smoking outside these areas, including in cabins and on excursion coaches, is strictly prohibited.