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    Cruise holiday ideas

    Cruise holiday ideas 2018Cruise holiday ideasRiver cruise in Bratislava

    By Mark Hodson, Sunday Times Travel Writer and Editor of 101 Holidays

    Looking for cruise holiday ideas in 2017 or 2018? We’ve found a great selection of trips. Not just the usual massive ships doing the rounds of the Caribbean and the Med, but exciting and unusual vessels and routes. Take your pick. If you’re travelling alone, check out cruise holidays for singles.


    Firstly decide, river or ocean. Ocean cruising has all the glamour of the big ships, and the chance to visit multiple countries. The two most popular destinations are the Mediterranean in summer and the Caribbean in winter. River cruising is slower, on smaller more intimate boats. It’s great for sightseeing with views on both sides of the boat, and you will often moor in the centre of cities.

    How about cruising Turkey’s spectacular southeastern coastline on a traditional gulet. Meander gently along the coast, mooring in crystal-clear bays, swimming in the sea, gazing at the stars and stopping ashore to visit historical sites. We recommend Peter Sommer Travels.

    Crossing the Atlantic is more than a cruise – it’s an epic journey. And there can be nowhere more exciting to arrive than in New York City where you are greeted by the Statue of Liberty. You can choose from a range of transatlantic cruises between the UK and the USA but the seven-night voyage from Southampton to New York (or vice versa) on board Cunard’s Queen Mary 2 is the pick of the crop. Details from Iglu Cruises.

    Take to the seas in a traditional rigged tall ship, exploring the lesser-known waterways of the Mediterranean, Central America and Caribbean. Enjoy the romance of the wind in the sails and get access to small ports out of reach of the bigger cruise ships. We recommend Star Clippers which has 3-, 4-, 7-, 10- and 11-night voyages as well as longer transatlantic and Indian Ocean crossings. Its ships include Star Clipper, Star Flyer and the 5-masted Royal Clipper.

    Sit back and watch the French countryside roll past on a luxury hotel barge. Choose from a selection of six-night cruises in BurgundyAlsace-Lorraine, Bordeaux and the Canal du Midi. Each barge sleeps between 4 and 20 passengers and the price includes gourmet meals, fine wines, an open bar and shore excursions.

    Norway is stunning in summer – see the Midnight Sun as you cruise through a magical landscape of fjords, lakes and mountains. Options include a fascinating coastal voyage used by local people and cruise through the gorgeous and little-known Lofoten Islands. Details from Nordic Experience.

    Explore via shipTURKEY_184ARiver cruising on AmaPrimaSeylan Hanna_1

    Egypt is only five hours flying time from the UK, but a world away. It’s a great winter sun destination and there’s no better way to see than from the deck of a cruise ship sailing down the Nile. Details from Abercrombie & Kent.

    Take a slow boat along the Mighty Mississippi as it rolls through the Deep South, passing glittering cities, historic towns and rolling green countryside. A seven-night cruise on the luxurious antebellum-style American Queen includes stays in Memphis, Nashville and New Orleans. We recommend Avalon Waterways.

    See our cruise holiday tips for first timers.

    Last updated: 10 August 2017

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