TOP 25 CRUISE EX­PE­RI­ENCES

We se­lect the world’s best cruise ex­pe­ri­ences be­tween now and 2020

Signature Travel & Lifestyle - - Contents -

1 LIND­BLAD EX­PE­DI­TIONS

7 days, Gala­pa­gos Is­lands The 48-guest Na­tional Ge­o­graphic Is­lan­der of­fers an ac­tion-packed week of hikes, kayak­ing, pad­dle­board­ing and snorkelling for a rich and di­verse ex­pe­ri­ence of Dar­win’s famed ar­chi­pel­ago. The short­ened Wild Gala­pa­gos Es­cape itin­er­ary in­cludes close en­coun­ters with wildlife – gi­ant tor­toises, pink flamin­goes, blue-footed boo­bies – with ex­pert guides by your side. De­par­tures April to May and Au­gust to Novem­ber.

3 VIK­ING CRUISES

245 days, Lon­don roundtrip This trip of a life­time – the longest world voy­age – takes in 113 cities and ports in 59 coun­tries on six con­ti­nents in a cir­cum­nav­i­ga­tion of the globe on board Vik­ing Sun. The Ul­ti­mate World Cruise in­cludes overnight stays in 23 des­ti­na­tions, break­ing up nights on board. Lodg­ings are lux­u­ri­ous and the 930-guest ship of­fers am­ple en­ter­tain­ment, ac­tiv­ity, well­ness and din­ing op­tions. De­parts 31 Au­gust 2019.

2 RE­GENT SEVEN SEAS CRUISES

16 nights, Mi­ami to Los An­ge­les Af­ter her first transat­lantic voy­age in Fe­bru­ary 2020, Seven Seas Splen­dor will de­part Mi­ami for LA via the Panama Canal. Among the eight ports on the way are Carta­gena, Colom­bia and Cabo San Lu­cas, Mexico. The all-suite, all-bal­cony

Seven Seas Splen­dor can ac­com­mo­date up to 750 guests. De­parts 25 Fe­bru­ary 2020. The re­turn journey, de­part­ing 14 March, stops at Catalina Is­land, Aca­pulco and Puntare­nas, Costa Rica.

4 CRYS­TAL CRUISES

13 days, Fort Lauderdale to New Or­leans

Crys­tal Sym­phony’s Is­land Rhythms & Big Easy Jazz im­merses mu­sic-lovers in the world of jazz with live per­for­mances and en­rich­ing lec­tures be­fore ar­riv­ing in New Or­leans. Div­ing, hik­ing and snorkelling are on of­fer on the way to the fun-filled jazz cap­i­tal, or just sit back and take in the tunes. Crys­tal Sym­phony is more lux­u­ri­ous than ever, hav­ing un­der­gone a makeover in 2017. De­parts 2 De­cem­ber 2018.

5 PO­NANT

8 days, roundtrip from Praia, Cape Verde Por­tuguese, African and Mediter­ranean in­flu­ences con­verge in the Cape Verde is­lands off the northwest coast of Africa. On board the beau­ti­ful Le Po­nant sail­ing yacht, where 32 state­rooms are decked out in blue and white, guests can feel at one with the ocean. The cruise takes guests to un­crowded is­land ports for a taste of life in this stun­ning part of the world. De­parts 10 Novem­ber 2018.

6 AURORA EX­PE­DI­TIONS

24 days, Longyear­byen to Reykjavik From Longyear­byen on the is­land of Spits­ber­gen in Nor­way’s north this cruise aboard the 54-pas­sen­ger ves­sel

Po­lar Pi­o­neer of­fers the chance to spot wal­ruses, po­lar bears and rein­deer along a coast­line of calv­ing glaciers and tow­er­ing cliffs be­fore cross­ing the Green­land Sea. Ex­pe­di­tions de­part July/ Au­gust 2018, 2019 and 2020.

7 SCENIC

15 days, Athens to Venice

Scenic Eclipse, touted as the world’s first six-star Dis­cov­ery Yacht, will take 228 guests from Athens via the Greek is­lands, Turkey and Croa­tia to Venice, Italy. Walk­ing and ebike tours, wine tast­ings, pri­vate con­certs and he­li­copter ex­cur­sions await. On board, ex­pect the el­e­gance you’d find in a chic bou­tique ho­tel. The Pent­house Suite has a 60 square-me­tre curved ter­race with a pri­vate Jacuzzi. De­parts 11 May 2020.

8 TAUCK

11 days, Mu­nich to Vi­enna For the past 400 years, ev­ery 10 years, some 2,000 lo­cal res­i­dents of the lit­tle Bavar­ian vil­lage of Ober­am­mer­gau join forces to per­form the now world-fa­mous Pas­sion­sspiele (Pas­sion Play), a dra­matic re­cre­ation of Je­sus Christ’s last days on Earth. The new Danube Re­flec­tions ex­pe­ri­ence in­cludes a seven-night river cruise with ex­cur­sions in Ger­many, Czech Repub­lic, Slo­vakia and Aus­tria, and in­cludes premier seat­ing at the Pas­sion­sspiele. Depar­ture dates from 7 June 2020.

9 AVALON WA­TER­WAYS

2–19 days, 14 Christ­mas cruise op­tions If the idea of shopping for hand-crafted gifts, fresh gin­ger­bread and a fes­tive at­mos­phere ap­peals, a river cruise tak­ing in Europe’s Christ­mas mar­kets will feel like a dream. Avalon Wa­ter­ways of­fers a range of op­tions, in­clud­ing the 12-day Basel to Prague cruise, which takes in the Black For­est (home of cherry cake and cuckoo clocks) and Christ­mas mar­kets in Nurem­burg and Prague. Christ­mas cruises de­part Novem­ber–De­cem­ber.

10 SIL­VERSEA EX­PE­DI­TIONS

12 days, Dublin to Lon­don This voy­age aboard Sil­ver Cloud Ex­pe­di­tion will see trav­ellers delv­ing into the his­tory and wildlife of Scot­land and Eng­land. Spot the At­lantic puf­fin on the Isle of Lunga and ex­plore the Orkneys be­fore jour­ney­ing across the spec­tac­u­lar Scot­tish High­lands by train in search of cas­tles, in­clud­ing royal sum­mer home, Bal­moral Cas­tle. Walk the cob­ble­stone streets of York be­fore sail­ing south for Lon­don. De­parts 23 May 2019.

11 SE­ABOURN

21 days, Stock­holm to Copen­hagen The St Petersburg & Scan­di­na­vian Gems voy­age from Swe­den to Den­mark is part of the maiden sea­son of Se­abourn’s new­est ship, the 600-pas­sen­ger

Se­abourn Ova­tion, which in­cludes a three-day stay in St Petersburg. Es­to­nia, Fin­land and Nor­way are also on the itin­er­ary, in­clud­ing sea days with time to marvel at the oth­er­worldly Nord­fjord glaciers, moun­tains and fjords. De­parts 29 June 2019.

12 THE RITZ-CARL­TON YACHT COL­LEC­TION

7 nights, Monte-Carlo to Barcelona This maiden voy­age marks the RitzCarl­ton’s first foray into yacht­ing. Just 298 guests will set sail along the Côte d’Azur from Monaco, tak­ing in the ex­clu­sive towns and charm­ing vil­lages that make the area such a celebrity draw­card. You’ll also drop an­chor at Saint-Tropez, colour­ful Sète in France, and the tran­quil Bay of Roses in Spain, savour­ing menus in­spired by lo­cal cul­tural tra­di­tions. De­parts 7 June 2020.

13 QUARK EX­PE­DI­TIONS

18 days, Ushuaia roundtrip The Falk­lands (Malv­inas) and South Ge­or­gia: Is­lands of the South­ern Ocean ex­pe­di­tion gives ad­ven­ture-seek­ers the chance to fol­low in the foot­steps of le­gendary ex­plorer Sir Ernest Shack­le­ton. Dis­cover abun­dant wildlife and wild is­land land­scapes, in­clud­ing a visit to one of the largest king pen­guin rook­eries in the world. Ocean Ad­ven­turer car­ries 132 guests in com­fort to an un­spoiled area of the world. De­parts 22 Novem­ber 2018.

14 CELEBRITY CRUISES

9 nights, Rome roundtrip

Celebrity Edge is the first in a new line of fu­tur­is­tic cruise ships de­signed to push the en­ve­lope in de­sign and on­board tech­nol­ogy. The Magic Car­pet, for ex­am­ple, is a move­able can­tilevered plat­form that al­lows guests to feel as if they are soar­ing over the open ocean. De­part­ing Rome on 10 Au­gust 2019, she will stop at Naples, Barcelona, Monaco and Florence, with ex­cur­sions ex­plor­ing sights, tastes and cul­tural at­trac­tions.

15 PAUL GAU­GUIN CRUISES

11 nights, Tahiti roundtrip The Cook Is­lands & So­ci­ety Is­lands voy­age jour­neys from Raro­tonga and the co­ral reef-lined la­goon of Ai­tu­taki to Bora Bora and Moorea. Paul Gau­guin caters for up to 332 guests, and pas­sen­gers also have ac­cess to the com­pany’s two ex­clu­sive re­treats: Motu Ma­hana off the is­land of Taha’a and a pri­vate beach in Bora Bora. Se­lect de­par­tures be­tween March and Novem­ber 2019.

16 PO­NANT

11 days, Sey­chelles to Sri Lanka The first ship in Po­nant’s Ex­plorer se­ries has ar­rived, with a fur­ther five sis­ter ships sched­uled to join the fleet by 2021. Le Lapérouse is the first ship to be equipped with Blue Eye, a multi-sen­sory un­der­wa­ter lounge. The 92-state­room ship will sail from Vic­to­ria on the is­land of Mahé to Sri Lanka via the Mal­dives. De­parts 11 De­cem­ber 2018.

17 VIK­ING CRUISES

15 days, Ber­gen to Basel Tak­ing in 15 ports in six coun­tries, Rhine & Vik­ing Shores & Fjords com­bines an ocean cruise through Nor­way and Den­mark with an eight-day river cruise. Visit a Dan­ish fish­ing vil­lage be­fore dis­em­bark­ing Vik­ing Sun in Am­s­ter­dam and drift­ing down the Rhine, past Dutch wind­mills, Ger­man cas­tles and French vine­yards. De­parts 2 June 2019.

18 SEAD­REAM YACHT CLUB 19 AZA­MARA CRUISES

20 UNI­WORLD

12 days, New Delhi to Kolkata The en­rich­ing ME to WE & The Sa­cred Ganges cruise and tour com­bines a four­day sus­tain­able-de­vel­op­ment project in ru­ral In­dia with an eight-day cruise. The ME to WE ex­pe­ri­ence in­cludes vis­its to lo­cal vil­lages, sun­rise yoga and vol­un­teer work, then step aboard the lav­ish Ganges

Voy­ager II to dis­cover tem­ples, ar­ti­san vil­lages and Mother Teresa’s home and mu­seum. The cruise is limited to 56 guests. De­par­tures from 4 Jan­uary 2019.

21 HA­PAG-LLOYD CRUISES

18 days, Tokyo to Sin­ga­pore

MS Europa 2 will head to Ja­pan via Viet­nam for the first time in 2019, with an itin­er­ary tak­ing in Tokyo, Toba (on the Shima Penin­sula), Naha (the largest city in Ok­i­nawa) and Ishi­gaki (Ja­pan’s south­ern­most city). The five-star-plus­rated ac­com­mo­da­tions range from ve­ran­dah suites to fam­ily apart­ments and pent­house suites. Ca­sual lux­ury with a fo­cus on well­ness is the phi­los­o­phy on board. De­parts 8 May 2019.

22 AMANDIRA

5 nights, In­done­sia A tra­di­tional two-masted sail­ing ship,

Amandira sails from the ex­clu­sive Aman­wana tented re­sort on Moyo Is­land to Ko­modo Na­tional Park and around the Raja Am­pat is­lands. Life aboard the 10-guest ship cen­tres around the fore­deck, just the spot for sun­set cock­tails. State-of-theart Nitrox dive equip­ment is on board for divers of all ex­pe­ri­ence lev­els. Raja Am­pat Ex­pe­di­tions de­part 5 De­cem­ber 2018, 2 March 2019 and 9 March 2019.

23 OCEA­NIA CRUISES

30 days, Dubai to Cape Town This stand­out cruise takes up to 684 guests through the Ara­bian Sea and In­dian Ocean on board the newly re­fur­bished Nau­tica. With neo­clas­si­cal fur­nish­ings, teak decks and a con­vivial at­mos­phere, this cruise is as much about tak­ing it easy as it is about ex­plor­ing ex­cit­ing ports in Oman, the Sey­chelles, In­dia and Africa on the way to Cape Town. De­parts 6 De­cem­ber 2018 and 7 De­cem­ber 2019.

24 SE­ABOURN

22 days, Auck­land to Syd­ney The Land­falls of Cap­tain Cook cruise in­vites guests to dis­cover the won­ders of their own back­yard on a route sailed by the well-known ex­plorer. From Auck­land, the 458-guest Se­abourn Sou­journ sails to New Cale­do­nia, Van­u­atu and the Solomon Is­lands and on to Aus­tralia via Pa­pua New Guinea. The all-suite ship of­fers gourmet din­ing, on­board en­ter­tain­ment and two swim­ming pools. De­parts 19 Novem­ber 2018.

25 RE­GENT SEVEN SEAS CRUISES

67 nights, Syd­ney to Shanghai Cruise from Syd­ney up the east coast to Cairns be­fore ven­tur­ing off­shore to ex­plore fas­ci­nat­ing ports of call in Cam­bo­dia, Viet­nam, Thailand and Myan­mar. The re­fur­bished Seven Seas

Mariner is home for the first 52 nights, fol­lowed by a 15-night ex­pe­ri­ence from Hong Kong to Shanghai, in­clud­ing a four-night cruise on China’s Yangtze River. De­parts 20 Jan­uary 2019.

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0402 Le Po­nant dis­cov­ers the Cape Verde is­lands © Philippe & Guil­laume Plis­son 03 Kayak­ing in Green­land © Fleur Bound/Aurora Ex­pe­di­tions 04 Amandira hosts div­ing ex­pe­di­tions in the Raja Am­pat is­lands © Tanapong Bhukaswan/Shut­ter­stock

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05 Ma­rina din­ner with Paul Gau­guin Cruises 06 Vik­ing Sun re­turns to the fjords of Nor­way © Vik­ing Cruises 07 Amandira hosts div­ing ex­pe­di­tions in the Raja Am­pat is­lands

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