136 Telephone 01473 742424 or contact your travel agentdunedin - gdynia Cultures of the Adriaticthe adjacent museum. Walk down the Stradun and squares open out, many of them with open-air bars and cafés, while every corner seems to have sculptures or fountains, bell towers or gardens. At the far end of the Stradun is the magnificent cathedral: originally Byzantine, it was rebuilt as a Romanesque church in the Middle Ages and again in the baroque style following an earthquake in 1667. Dunedin, New ZealandOne of the best-preserved cities in the southern hemisphere, Dunedin's fine old buildings reflect the economic and cultural importance of the city since Victorian times. It was settled by Scottish migrants in 1848 and has the country's only kilt shop, whisky distillery and haggis maker, not to mention a fine castle, a chocolate factory and a colony of albatross. The Octagon, a piazza in the heart of the city, is fronted by Dunedin's magnificent former railway station - a masterpiece in basalt, limestone and granite. Nearby is Baldwin Street, the world's steepest street: there are 270 steps up to the top. Larnach Castle was built in 1871 by William Lanarch, to impress his French heiress wife, Eliza: it took 12 years to finish, and the hanging staircase is unique in the Southern Hemisphere. Olveston is another stately home, built in the early 20th century and bequeathed to the city in 1966. It is filled with fine objects in bronze, ivory and jade, as well over 250 paintings. Dunkirk, FranceThe first records of Dunkirk are as a fishing village in around 800AD, but it became famous as a haven for North Sea pirates in medieval times. Local hero, Jean Bart a 17th-century raider, is buried in Saint Eloi's Church in the centre of town. During the first half of the 20th century, Dunkirk suffered during two world wars and the town has many poignant reminders. The British Memorial was erected in memory of over 4,500 men who died during 1940. This was before the mass evacuation of 338,226 Allied soldiers in May that year by the legendary "little ships". There are also memorials to local soldiers who died in the First World War.In the centre of town, the small Museum of Fine Art has paintings by several European artists, as well as a gallery of local natural history. The Musée Portuaire, in a former tobacco warehouse on the quay, is dedicated to the development of the town from fishing village to commercial port: the maritime gallery has an extensive display of model ships.Eden, AustraliaOverlooking the natural harbour on Twofold Bay, Eden was established in the 19th century as a whaling station and it is still an important fishing port. However, it's the outstanding natural beauty of the local scenery and the beaches which attracts many visitors. The town is surrounded by the Ben Boyd National Park, named after the founder of the nearby settlement of Boydtown, which dates from 1842. It's now disused, although the old Sea Horse Inn is still open, sitting among the ruins.In Eden itself, the small Killer Whale Museum has interesting displays on whales and whaling. And from the top of the former lighthouse - Boyd's Tower - there are panoramic views out over the sea and the sandstone cliffs of the National Park. Eidfjord, Hardangerfjord, NorwayThe land around Eidfjord has evidence of some of the oldest settlements in Norway. There are burial mounds from the Iron Age and about 350 Viking graves on the Hæreid plateau, about 20 minutes' walk away. This is also the gateway to the Hardangervidda National Park, where over 20,000 wild reindeer roam free; it's thought they were hunted here as far back as the Stone Age. Today the reindeer are joined by horses, goats and sheep, along with an enormous range of birds, from snowy owls to eagles. The XXXHardangervidda Naturscenter in Eidfjord has audio-visual presentations and displays about the park, its flora and fauna.Worth seeing is Eidfjord Old Church, a stone building dating from 1309 - it was allegedly built by a domineering local woman, Rike-Ragna, to atone for her many sins. With a couple of hours to spare, the spectacular Voringfossen waterfall, about 20km away, is an amazing sight, situated at the end of the Hardangerfjord power station.El Guamache, Isla MargaritaThe only port of the island, which sits off the coast of Venezuela, El Guamache is a very popular destination both with international tourists and people from the mainland. There are lots of palm-roofed shops in and around the harbour area, selling handicrafts, jewellery and souvenirs. There is also a number of duty-free shops. Margarita is actually two islands joined by a sand-spit that goes into the La Restinga National Park. This area, to the west of the island, is very dry and is home to the yellow Margaritan Parrot. It's one of two parks on the island, which also has a number of forts and churches from the Spanish colonial era. Farsund, NorwayIn Norway's far south, Farsund's strategic location led to its development as a trading centre back in the 18th century, with upwards of 50 shipowners operating from the town. The region supports extensive agriculture and, of course, fishing, while the varied scenery - sandy beaches, rocky crags, mountains, forest and dozens of islands - has long attracted artists and photographers.Just inland is Vanse Church, which probably dates from the early 11th century, while at Lista there are almost 20 historical buildings spread across the town. The museum, which owns the buildings, also has a fine pre-historic collection, much of it found at nearby Pennefeltet where there are 3,000-year-old rock carvings, burial fields and traces of Iron- and Stone-Age settlements.Flåm, Sognefjord, NorwayFlåm is a tiny village on the banks of the Aurlandsfjord, one of the branches of the beautiful Sognefjord - the longest and deepest fjord in Europe. The setting is utterly spectacular. A stroll along the waterside, past orchards and hamlets, cottages and farmland, helps to explain why this area is so enduringly popular with visitors. Back in the village, the pretty church with its traditionally decorated walls, is one of the oldest in Norway.In recent years the Flåm Railway has become a major attraction. Finished in 1944, it climbs over 20km and almost a thousand metres through magnificent scenery, in and out of mountains, past waterfalls and ravines, pausing at the beautiful Kjosfossen waterfall for a photo opportunity. Down in the village, the Flåmsbana Museum tells the story of the railway's design and construction.Flamenco (for Balboa), PanamaBalboa was established during the building of the Panama Canal and until 1979 - when the Canal Zone was abolished - it was the administrative centre of the Zone. It is now home to the Panama Canal Administration. At the foot of Ancon Hill, on the outskirts of the town, is Mi Pueblito, an open-air museum showing the life and times of the region. There are recreations of the village which housed workers who built the Canal, as well as those of the indigenous Kuna people who make, display and sell their traditional crafts. Fort de France, MartiniqueThe largest city on the island of Martinique, Fort-de-France is surrounded by steep green hills into which are tucked houses in a bewildering array of shapes and sizes. In the centre many major buildings are made out of iron. These include the extraordinary Cathédrale St-Louis, which was largely rebuilt in 1978 in the style of a 19th century predecessor and the Schoelcher Library, built for the 1889 Paris World Fair and shipped to the island piece by piece. There are a couple of interesting museums in the town. The Regional Ethnography Museum has displays on the sugar-cane industry which sustained the islands and on the slaves who worked in the plantations. The Museum of Archaeology - exploring the island's pre-Colombian past - stands in front of La Savane gardens. This delightful open space has tree-shaded walks and formal floral displays, surrounded by charming bars, cafés and some chic boutiques. Fortaleza, BrazilOne of Brazil's biggest but least famous cities, Fortaleza has developed into a major tourist centre, with the spectacular beaches becoming a magnet for both Brazilian and international tourists. But this is not just a beach restort. The excellent Centro Dragão do Mar de Arte e Cultura includes museums, cinemas, theatres, galleries, a planetarium and cafés in an extensive complex linked by elevated walkways. The Parque Ecológico do Côco was established to protect the mangrove forest alongside the Rio Côco. The Memorial da Cultura Cearense is one of several excellent museums in the town. It is dedicated to the culture of the Ceará region, of which Fortaleza is the capital, with displays about the local cowboys and the Padre Cícero cult. Praia do Futuro is the city's most popular beach - 5km of soft rolling sands.Funchal, MaderiaFunchal has a magnificent natural harbour protected by hills that rise up over 1,200m. Compact enough to be explored by foot, it offers plenty to see. The central point is the Sé Cathedral, completed in 1517, which retains several original features. However, many of its treasures can now be seen in Funchal's museums, notably the Sacred Art Museum, which has major collections of religious art, sculpture and jewellery. Also worth a visit are two museums devoted to products which made Funchal wealthy: the City of Sugar Museum and the Madeira Wine Institute Museum. With rich volcanic soil and a magnificent climate, Funchal has many stunning gardens. The Monte Palace Tropical Garden has exotic plants from all over the world, as well as those from ancient forests native to the islands. Equally impressive is the Jardim Botanico, high in the hills. It can easily be reached by the magnificent Botanical Gardens cable car, which gives wonderful views over the city.Galveston (for Houston), USAAlthough Galveston is often seen as just a port city providing access to Houston, its historic downtown area, The Strand, has been sympathetically restored over the past 20 years. The museums, fine buildings and 50km of beaches are a delight to visit.Houston itself is full of surprises. Famous as a focus of the oil and gas industry - and home to the Johnson Space Centre - it's also home to museums, galleries, concerts, sports and a fabulous choice of restaurants and bistros. The Johnson Space Centre is a unique opportunity to see how astronauts train for missions, to touch a moon rock and to find out how to land a space shuttle. The Houston Museum of Natural Science is a multi-faceted complex that includes a planetarium, exhibitions, Imax theatre, the Cullen House of Gems and Minerals, the Wiess Energy Hall, and a butterfly centre. Gdynia, PolandAn important seaport with an intriguing history, the oldest building in Gdynia is the St. Michael the Archangel's church, built in the 13th century, while the port itself houses two museum ships.
www.fredolsencruises.com 137GdaNsk - GudvangenXXXGdansk (from Gdynia), PolandGdansk was the setting for two of the 20th century's most momentous events. It was on the Westerplatte peninsula that the opening salvos of the Second World War were fired: the scars of those bullets can still be seen on the Nowy Port lighthouse. And just outside the old town is Gate No.2 of the Gdansk shipyard, where the Solidarity movement was born, signalling the start of the fall of the Iron Curtain. Visit the Roads to Freedom exhibition to see a fitting tribute to the movement. Geiranger, Storfjord, NorwayThis small, attractive town is at the end of the Geirangerfjord, one of the arms of the Storfjord. The scenery around Geiranger is some of the most stunning in Europe, no wonder then that since 2005 the Geirangerfjord itself has been listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The hour-long cruise from Hellesylt, at the mouth of the fjord, to Geiranger is a breathtaking experience. Farms, mostly abandoned, cling to near vertical cliffs and waterfalls with evocative names, including the Seven Sisters, the Suitor and the Bridal Veil, tumble down into the clear blue water.Each June the Geiranger 'fjord-to-summit' event takes place. This is a half-marathon run followed by a bike ride that takes competitors up almost 1,500m from the fjord to the top of Mount Dalsnibba. For less energetic visitors, the walks along the waterside are a delight to be savoured.General San Martin, PeruNamed after José de San Martín, the general who led Peru (as well as Chile and Argentina) to independence from Spain in 1820/21, Puerto General San Martin is a thriving deepwater port. It offers a gateway to famous sights such as Nazca geoglyphs. Nearby is the Paracas National Reserve, a sanctuary for seals, penguins, flamingos and dozens of other species of seabird. Just offshore are the Islas Ballestas, home to even more birds, including countless cormorants and Inca terns, as well as sea lions - the islands are a breeding ground. There are regular local boat trips to the Islas Ballestas from the port and from Paracas, a village just across the bay.Genoa, ItalyBirthplace of Christopher Columbus, Genoa has a long history as a maritime centre and is Italy's biggest port. It has always been a city of contrasts, with fine Renaissance palaces standing proudly along grand boulevards, Baroque churches packed into medieval streets, and friendly cafés and elegant bars hidden in narrow alleys. The medieval quarter is the largest in Europe and made for exploring.Many of the city's museums and galleries are on or around Via Garibaldi, which is one of the most beautiful avenues in Italy. The Galleria di Palazzo Bianco and Galleria di Palazzo Rosso both have wonderful art collections, while Palazzo Podesta and Palazzo Tursi - both formerly private mansions - are worth exploring. For views over the city, take an elevator up to the Castelletto Belvedere or to the top of Il Bigo, the tower built in 1992 to celebrate the 500th anniversary of Columbus landing in America. Il Bigo is next to Europe's largest aquarium, which recreates more than 50 marine environments. Getxo (for Bilbao) SpainBilbao was established in 1300, set into a loop of the Nervión River, so that water protects it on three sides. The Old Quarter is small, but it's the place to find the city's more interesting bars and cafés - and to see the delightful Plaza Nueva, which is enclosed by 64 elegant arches. There's a flea market here every Sunday. Within the Old Quarter are ancient churches, notably the Iglesia de San Nicolás and the Basílica de Begoña, which has huge religious paintings by Luca Giordano. The Catedral de Santiago, dating from the 14th century but with a mid-Victorian façade, is nearby. For many, the main attraction is the Guggenheim Museum. This stunning creation of tumbling cubes and sensuous curves, covered in titanium squares like the scales of a fish, shocked local people when it was first built. However, although they still call it "The Beast", most have come to love the building for its homage to the city's maritime heritage - and its symbolism of Bilbao's regeneration.GibraltarThe Rock of Gibraltar is a giant limestone mass rising 425m out of the sea. Gibraltar is almost more British than the UK: policemen in familiar uniforms, red phone boxes and pillar boxes, and shops that could have come from any British high street. But this tiny country also shows traces of a long heritage dating back to its origins as Calpe, a Phoenician trading centre. A stroll round the walls of the old city - built by the Moors - provides more insights into Gibraltar's history. A cable car climbs up from Main Street to the Upper Rock Nature Reserve where visitors can see the Barbary Apes. From here, the Great Siege Tunnels can be visited: these were cut into the Rock to house cannons that protected Gibraltar over the centuries. In the centre of town are the Gibraltar Museum, covering the history of the Rock from pre-historic times, the impressive Roman Catholic Cathedral, in a converted mosque, and the Anglican Cathedral overlooking the harbour. Goa, IndiaWith a unique mix of Indian and Portuguese influences, Goa is both a classic beach resort and a sightseeing delight. Most of the interesting buildings are grouped close together. The Arch of the Viceroys was built in 1597 to commemorate Vasco da Gama's arrival in India, while the nearby Church of St. Cajetan is modelled on St. Peter's in Rome. Opposite the magnificent Sé Cathedral, which is bigger than any church in Portugal itself, is the Basilica of Bom. Here the remains of Francis Xavier, a founder of the Jesuit order and patron saint of Goa, lie in a silver casket next to the altar. There are several interesting museums in Goa, including the museum of archaeology, which has collections of manuscripts, coins and other artefacts from its history. Gothenburg, SwedenSweden's second largest city, Gothenburg has transformed itself recently from a rather dour seaport into a major cultural centre. In more than a dozen museums and galleries, visitors can find out about anything from the secrets of the Cold War at Aerosum, a former underground bunker, to the development of western medicine in the Medical History Museum. Many museums are quirkily different: the Kortedala is a two-room apartment from the late 1950s, complete with original furniture and personal belongings, while the Göteborgs Remfabrik is a museum of working life in a factory that made vehicle transmission belts. Many of these were used on Volvo cars, and the Volvo Museum depicts that company's history, with a display of a hundred historic vehicles.No visit to Gothenburg is complete without a trip to Liseberg, one of the most beautiful amusement parks in the world. Magnificently laid-out, Liseberg features dozens of rides and adventures, not to mention shows and live performances, and several popular restaurants and cafés.Grand Cayman, West IndiesGrand Cayman is very popular with scuba divers, who enjoy its crystal clear waters and calm seas. Seven Mile Beach, on the west coast of Grand Cayman, is generally held to be one of the world's finest beaches with soft sand. Columbus called these islands "Las Tortugas" after the number of turtles in the seas here. The Cayman Islands National Museum in the Old Courts Building has more than 8,000 exhibits ranging from documents and coins to an old fishing boat. The building goes back to the 19th century and used to serve as the town hall, courthouse - and jail. The Maritime Treasure Museum has displays about the Caymans' former sailors, including a robot Blackbeard telling stories about his time as a pirate. The oldest building in the Caymans is Pedro Castle, where the Slavery Abolition Act was read in 1835. For a peaceful stroll, try the Queen Elizabeth II Botanical Gardens, which has over 400 native plants as well as iguanas, parrots and other birds.Grand Turk, Turks & CaicosWith sun-drenched beaches and a beautiful sea, Grand Turk is a haven for both swimmers and those who just want to sunbathe. Cockburn Town is the historic centre of the island, an unspoilt place where donkeys still wander round the streets. The heart of the town, along the waterfront, has buildings that are two centuries old, with bleached wood and limestone facades and gardens filled with fragrant bougainvillea. The Turks & Caicos National Museum is housed in Guinep House, built with timbers salvaged from ships wrecked on the offshore reefs. The highlight is the remains of a Spanish sailing ship that sank in the shallow offshore waters some time in the early 16th century. It was excavated in the 1980s and displays include artefacts used by the sailors. The museum also has exhibits about the islands' ancient salt industry and the people who lived here before the time of Columbus.Greenock (for Glasgow), ScotlandFormerly best-known for shipbuilding and heavy industry, modern Glasgow has developed into one of Europe's most vibrant cities. It retains many fine buildings, including several by the local architect and designer Charles Rennie Mackintosh. Educated at Glasgow School of Art, Mackintosh won the competition to design a new School in 1896 - and in doing so created a masterpiece and gave birth to a new style in European architecture. A re-creation of the house where he lived with his wife, the artist Margaret MacDonald Mackintosh, can also be visited - it has much of the original furniture and décor. The Mackintosh House is part of the Hunterian Art Gallery, which also owns many works by James McNeill Whistler. In fact Glasgow has some of the finest collections of publicly owned art in Europe. The Burrell Collection, bequeathed to the city by the local industrialist, is outstanding, with excellent medieval paintings and Chinese ceramics. Glasgow Cathedral is Scotland's only intact medieval cathedral: St Mungo, founder of a monastery here in the 7th century, is said to be buried in the crypt. The Glasgow Transport Museum has an outstanding collection of vehicles, boats, trams and model railways. Gudvangen, Sognefjord, NorwayGudvangen is at the end of the Nærøyfjord, a branch of the Sognefjord and the narrowest navigable fjord in the world. Over a thousand years ago this was a Viking trading centre and by the 17th century over 400 people lived in the town. However, more than half the population of that time emigrated - mainly to North America - because there was not enough land to support the population. This was one of Norway's first cruise destinations - the old souvenir shop was built in 1876 - but lack of building land means that Gudvangen has changed very little and it remains a typical fjord village. The White Caves, about 6km out of town, offer a stunning sound and light show. The caves are carved out of anorthosite - 'white rock' - which is only found in large quantities here - and on the moon.