Visby cruises

Visby is the largest town on the Swedish island of Gotland, around 55 miles east of the mainland. Set in the Baltic Sea, it appears on selected cruises to St Petersburg that feature a number of Scandinavian calls en route. The smaller isle of Faro is a close neighbour of Gotland, and the two are known for their ‘rauks’ a series of incredible, gnarled limestone formations around the coast that were created during the ice age. Other points of interest on Faro include a lighthouse, a medieval church and its use as a cinematic location; legendary director Ingmar Bergman spent much of his life here, and it features in a number of his films.

Visby’s Cultural Heritage

Many Viking artefacts have been discovered on Gotland. This also includes a vast number of coins originating from the Middle East, testament to the island’s importance among medieval traders. You can be part of this legacy with a visit to a reconstructed ninth century Viking village at Tofta, where you can try your hand at such vital Viking skills as axe throwing or handicrafts, as well as sports and games.

Visby later found renown as the main centre of the Hanseatic League from the twelfth to the fourteenth century, and these strands of history led to UNESCO declaring the town a World Heritage Site in 1995.

Discover Visby 

Visby is an eye-catching walled town that is an atmospheric blend of narrow cobbled streets, ruins and roses. Its fortifications run a fraction over two miles and are still studded with 27 of its original 29 towers. Cocooned within are inviting restaurants and charming markets, as well as more than 200 warehouses and wealthy merchants' dwellings. At the heart of the city the cathedral, Sancta Maria, is a real landmark, and has been since 1225. It all adds up to make Visby one of the best-preserved fortified commercial cities in northern Europe. 

There are several appealing beaches around Visby, while the Lummelunda Cave is another popular natural feature just north of the city. It stretches around two-and-a-half miles long, filled with ancient limestone formations.

Excursions

Please note: The shore excursions listed are typical for this port. The full programme of shore excursions available for your cruise will be displayed on Cruise Personaliser at least 12 weeks prior to departure.

  • Visby by Bike

    ‘Get on your bike’ and Explore the ‘Town of Roses’ by bicycle!

    Visby by Bike

    A short transfer from the pier will take you to your bikes and you’ll be ready to cycle off towards Almedalen, the old Hanseatic Harbour, where you can see the Powder Tower ‘Kruttornet’. Pedal along Strandgatan to the Botanical Gardens, before skirting alongside the city wall past Jungfrutornet, the Maiden’s Tower. Cycle up to Klinten, where you will have a good view over the old ruins, the harbour and the Baltic.

    Leave the city behind as you head south into the Gotland countryside and on to Högklint and the cliffs. Take a break to enjoy the excellent view over the precipitous coastline and Visby.

    Top up your energy with tea or coffee and local pastries served at Princess Eugenie’s Summer Residence, Fridhem, before returning pedal-power back to Visby and the harbour.


    ACTIVITY EXCURSIONS
    You and all those in your party should be aware that, in undertaking activity excursions, you will be involved in a degree of physical exertion and/or activity such as hiking, biking, snorkelling, kayaking, diving etc. By booking the excursion you confirm that you and all those in your party are in good physical and mental condition, with no history of conditions such as seizures, dizziness, fainting, heart condition, respiratory problems or back/neck problems (by way of example only). You should also ensure that no one in your party is taking medicine that carries a warning about impairment of physical or mental abilities. If you are pregnant this type of excursion may not be appropriate for you. It is your responsibility to ensure that you are fit and well enough to take part in the activities booked and you are reminded to take care for your own safety. Because of the risks associated with activity excursions, you may be asked by the excursion provider to sign a document which may affect or limit the excursion provider’s liability. Comfortable flat walking shoes are recommended.

    LIABILITY
    Cunard will arrange for the excursions to be performed by the relevant excursion provider. Cunard does not provide or supply the excursion services. Cunard will exercise reasonable care and skill in the selection of the excursion provider, but will not in any circumstances have a greater liability than the excursion supplier and Cunard shall not be responsible for the negligent acts/omissions of the excursion supplier. Please note that in relation to all excursions Cunard is not responsible or liable for any loss, damage, or injury sustained by you unless such loss, damage or injury arises out of a breach of legal duty of Cunard.

    TRAVEL INSURANCE
    Before booking any activity excursions it is essential that you ensure your travel insurance extends to cover the specified activity. It is your responsibility to obtain adequate insurance.

    This excursion will operate by coach, bike and on foot. This tour carries a maximum weight limit of 17 stone. Children and pregnant women are not permitted to participate. The cycle ride is around 2½ hours over varying terrain, and includes some hills and steep inclines. Helmets are provided, which must be worn. Guests must be in good physical condition and have previous experience riding a bike. Please wear comfortable footwear and clothing suitable for bike riding. Guests are required to use the shuttle bus service for their return to the ship.

    Tour code

    VSB_004

    Features

    • Activity high

      Activity Level: High

    • Refreshments included

      Refreshments included

    Duration

    4 hours

  • Medieval Visby and Surroundings

    A circular tour which covers both Visby town and the surrounding rural area.

    Medieval Visby and Surroundings

    As you set off, you’ll pass by the old Hanseatic harbour at Almedalen, where the Powder Tower can be seen.

    Enjoy a guided walk through the narrow streets of Visby. Visit St Mary’s Cathedral and continue past old medieval church ruins. All the while charming medieval alleyways surround you with houses covered in roses.

    Rejoin your coach at Almedalen for a drive through the countryside. Visit one of the many fine examples of a medieval countryside church that can be found on Gotland. Continue to Gnisvärd, a picturesque old fishing village from the 1700’s. Nearby you’ll see the Ship Grave - consisting of stones standing on their edge in the shape of a ship. It was believed that the ship would carry the departed Chieftains on their voyage to eternity.

    On the return to Visby, make a stop at Gallows Hill for a panoramic view of Visby and the coast.


    This excursion will operate by coach and on foot. There is approximately two hours’ walking involved on this tour. Within the medieval walled town, the guided walk is over cobble-stoned streets and is mainly downhill. Comfortable non-slip shoes are recommended.

    Tour code

    VSB_003

    Features

    • Activity high

      Activity Level: High

    Duration

    4 hours

  • Taste of Gotland & Vintage Railway

    Taste the famous Stafva cheese and enjoy a ride on the Gotland vintage train.

    Taste of Gotland & Vintage Railway

    Departing the pier, head south to visit one of the 92 medieval churches still in use on the island. In a municipality with the highest concentration of churches in Sweden, you are never far away from a church, although the majority of them are situated in the countryside. Their rich history is as visible in the architecture as it is in their decorations.

    Continue to Stafva Farm, which has been in the Corswant family for five generations and is one of the largest farms on the island, specialising in the production of soft cheeses. Taste some of the fantastic locally-produced cheeses during your visit.

    Gotland Railway Museum is located in Dalhem and houses an exhibition of the Gotland railways with trolleys, tickets, photos, uniforms and other memorabilia. Enjoy a train ride on the old railway. The old carriages will take you through the quiet and peaceful landscape, passing through Tule before arriving at Roma.

    A scenic drive will return you to Visby, travelling through the varied coastal, agricultural and wooded landscapes. Explore Visby on a short walking tour amongst roses, ruins and alleys, before returning to your ship. Behind the town wall with its 44 guard towers, this medieval stone city awaits your discovery.



    This excursion will operate by coach, train and on foot. There is approximately 45 minutes of walking on this tour, including some uneven and cobblestoned surfaces.

    Tour code

    VSB_010

    Features

    • Activity medium

      Activity Level: Medium

    • Refreshments included

      Refreshments included

    Duration

    4½ hours

  • Town of Ruins and Roses

    A comprehensive appreciation of the medieval, walled city of Visby and its immediate surroundings.

    Town of Ruins and Roses

    Upon reaching the upper wall entrance of Dalmansporten, you’ll begin a guided walk of Visby through the winding, narrow streets. Pause to visit St Mary’s Cathedral, built at the beginning of the 13th century and the only remaining example of the town’s many medieval churches. Then, continue past some of the old medieval church ruins, through the charming, narrow alleys flanked by picturesque old houses, where you can admire the beautiful roses that cover them. Take a look at the Botanical Gardens, which, because of the mild winters here, have specimens of almond trees, magnolias and acacias besides vivid displays of flowers.

    Back on board your coach, you’ll drive up to Gallows Hill for a wonderful view over the coastline and Visby. Visby is an outstanding example of a Northern European walled Hanseatic town, which has uniquely preserved its townscape and extremely valuable buildings. The town wall, dating back to the 13th century, is almost two miles long and encircles the old stone houses, churches and street system.


    This excursion will operate by coach and on foot. There is approximately two hours’ of walking involved on this tour. Within the medieval walled town, the guided walk is over cobble-stoned streets and is mainly downhill. Comfortable, non-slip shoes are recommended.

    Tour code

    VSB_001

    Features

    • Activity high

      Activity Level: High

    Duration

    3 hours

  • Gotland Countryside

    An ideal tour for those seeking a more leisurely option.

    Gotland Countryside

    Your tour starts out at the old Hanseatic harbour at Almedalen, where the Powder Tower can be seen, which is the oldest tower of the Visby city wall.

    Driving through the countryside south of Visby, you’ll stop off to visit one of the many fine examples of the medieval churches which can be found in Gotland. At the imposing burial- place, the Ship Grave, marvel at the stones standing on their edge in the shape of a ship. It was believed that the ship would carry the departed chieftains on their voyage to eternity.

    On the return journey, pause at the picturesque fishing village of Gnisvärd, dating back to the 1700’s. You’ll also make a stop at Gallows Hills view point, offering a wonderful view of Visby and the coast.


    This excursion will operate by coach. Some walking is required for full enjoyment of this tour.

    Tour code

    VSB_002

    Features

    • Activity low

      Activity Level: Low

    Duration

    3½ hours