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Aerial view of two islands in the Zadar archipelago in Dalmatia, Croatia
22 July, 20233 minute read

4 reasons to set sail on a small-ship cruise

Do you love the choice and variety on board ocean liners, but are curious about to trying something a little more low key? Perhaps you’re a river cruise aficionado, but you crave the wide open ocean? Or maybe you’re just dipping your toes into the world of cruises for the first time and you’re keen to start off small. Whatever your cruising preference, we think the freedom of a small ship cruise is hard to beat.

Our product manager, Alison, shares her four favourite things about small-ship cruising on our island-hopping cruises around Croatia.

Get closer to your destination

MV Adriatic Queen sails the Adriatic in Croatia

If you’re a seasoned ocean cruiser, you’ll be well used to a whole array of entertainment options. Cinemas, casinos and dance shows – to name just a few – are essential for those long, leisurely days at sea. But on a smaller ship, you’re travelling shorter distances, so these vessels really are designed for guests to spend more time outside, bringing them closer to the destination.

On our small ship cruises in Croatia, you can enjoy al fresco dining at every mealtime. Head to the top deck to take in the view and watch the sun go down as you moor up for an evening with a brand-new view.

The ships' smaller sizes means you’ll be physically closer to your destination, too. You’ll sail by islands so close, you could almost wave at the locals as you pass by. And you’ll dock up in quiet inlets for a secluded swim on a pebbly beach.

"I loved spending balmy evenings on the top deck - it's the best spot for watching the town light up as the sun goes down at the end of each day." Alison

A real taste of Croatia

Grilled squid served on a white plate beside the sea in Croatia

On a small ship, each evening brings a new culinary experience. You’ll moor on a new island or in a new city every day, so the crew will bring fresh ingredients on board each time you stop. From the catch of the day to regional specialties or local wine, you’ll get a flavour of the day’s destination as well as the chance to explore it. And if, come dinnertime, you're not ready to head back to the ship yet, you always have the option to dine with the locals and head to a restaurant in town. Your tour manager can even book a table for you beforehand, too.

"On my last trip, we had a delicious meal, using just fresh produce, with the view of the terracotta-topped buildings of Hvar in the background. Magical." Alison Porter, Product Manager

Immersive experiences throughout

Aerial shot of yachts moored in the harbour of Hvar Town on the Croatian island of Hvar

From the ancient UNESCO-listed streets of Dubrovnik to the sparkling azure waters of Hvar or the sprawling national parks of Mljet, you’ll experience a real variety of scenery, sights and history on your small ship cruise. Plus, you’ll enjoy a host of tours and private excursions, so you’ll really get a feel for each destination and learn about the fascinating history.

With overnight dockings at almost every stop, being on a small ship makes it very easy to hop ashore whenever you want. Fancy a pre-dinner stroll or a late night ice-cream? Be our guest. Plus, you get the added benefit of exploring each destination both during the day and at night.

“One day you're wandering through the great walled city of Dubrovnik, the next you're sipping Croatian wine with locals whilst admiring the endless sea views. These cruises are full of pinch-me moments." Alison 

A family feel

Aerial photo of the national park island of Mljet, Croatia

With less than 20 cabins, there’s no doubt you and your fellow cruisers will feel like old friends before you know it. But what you might not expect is the inevitable friendship of the crew that will serve you each day.

Your every need will be pandered to by a skilled team of staff. From the serving staff to the talented chef or the larger-than-life barman (also an expert on the local wines, if you’re looking to try something new), your name and your favourite drink order will be remembered in a jiffy. 

Plus, your Titan tour manager will also be on standby throughout the whole trip, in case you have any questions or queries along the way. They’ll be organising all your excursions for you, so you don’t need to think about a thing – just enjoy.

Tempted? Find out more about our small ship cruises in Croatia.

First published in 2019; updated in 2023

Image of blog author Natalie Carmen

From the coffee-clad highlands of Colombia to getting up-close-and-personal with elephants in Thailand and the exploring the sprawling winelands of South Africa, Natalie is a wannabe-adventurer and finds it hard to pick favourites when it comes to travel destinations. She has a weakness for wildlife and good wine, so her escapades are usually in pursuit of one or the other. As well as writing for The Scenic Route, Natalie also manages our social media channels. Be sure to follow Titan on Facebook to keep up to date with the latest news.

Natalie | About the author

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