You’ve decided that you want to go on a cruise, and why not? With more and more Britons choosing cruising as their holiday of choice, there is a now a wider range of destinations and operators than ever before. Indeed, here at CruiseDeals, we feature around 30 types of trip, each with multiple options, all available through a similar number of cruise operators. With this in mind, where do you start?
Where to go?
Cruising is popular all year round and with two thirds of the earth’s surface covered in water, there’s a destination for you out there. Cruises round the Mediterranean are incredibly popular, visiting the likes of Barcelona, Florence and Rome as well as many of the islands in the Med. If you’re looking further afield, the Caribbean is well served while cruising is one of the best ways of seeing Australasia as you can chalk up a huge numbers of cities and places of interest without crossing this massive continent by road or air. For something slightly different, there are cruises to Scandinavia, taking in the wonders of the Norwegian Fjords. Once you have decided on your area, it’s then a case of finding the correct cruise line and ship for you.
Who are you travelling with?
With so many cruise options out there, there is sure to be one that is suitable for your party, whether you’re a couple looking for romance, a family looking for activities at sea or an older couple looking for a relaxing break.
If you are a couple, older or younger, looking to spend quality, relaxing time together, look out for adults-only cruises. For example, P&O offers three ships that are solely for over-18s: Adonia, Arcadia and Oriana.
However, if you’re going as a family, Royal Caribbean and Carnival are two lines that offer great ships that will keep the kids entertained. Royal Caribbean’s Oasis of the Seas, Allure of the Seas and Independence of the Seas are particularly good for families, offering the likes of ice rinks, teen areas and in the case of the Oasis, the Dreamworks Experience featuring all their favourite movie characters. Look out also for cruises that offer kids’ clubs, such as some of those from Thomson Cruises, that will give mum and dad a bit of valuable respite!
Does the size of the ship matter to you?
Cruise ships come in all shapes and sizes. The biggest of them all, Royal Caribbean’s Allure of the Seas, carries an amazing 5,400 passengers in 2,700 staterooms, and offers 25 dining options and numerous entertainment options. However, smaller ships such as Princess’ Ocean Princess (680 passengers) can offer more of an intimate experience and tends to port at smaller harbours where larger ships can’t go. In general, larger ships with more activities attract families while the smaller vessels are more attractive to couples and older travellers.
To be at sea or not to be at sea?
Some people view cruises as a way of seeing multiple destinations conveniently in a short period of time while others look at a cruise as a way to spend some luxurious days at sea. Make sure when researching your cruise that you compare itineraries. Shorter cruises with more stops will spend a lot of time in port while a transatlantic crossing or many of the cruises in Asia will offer you more days at sea.
Choosing a cruise ultimately comes down to personal preference but there are so many factors to consider – we’ve just covered the major ones to get you thinking.
If you want help finding the perfect cruise for you, call CruiseDeals now on 0808 252 8134
Allure of the Sea by runekrem used under creative commons licence
Cruising the fjords by Feffef used under creative commons licence
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