Thursday, 31 July 2014

Un-Cruise Adventures Releases New 2015 Brochure of Adventure Cruises


First look at new upcoming destinations – Galápagos Islands and Costa Rica/Panama


Small ship cruise line operator Un-Cruise Adventures has released a new printed brochure detailing adventures through April 2016 in Alaska, Mexico’s Sea of Cortés, Hawaiian Islands, Columbia & Snake Rivers, coastal Washington and British Columbia.   New on the horizon are cruise adventures in the Galápagos Islands and Costa Rica/Panama.

The 72-page brochure may be ordered online and is currently being mailed out to requestors and travel agent partners.  The line’s fleet of seven adventure vessels carries 22-84 guests on adventure cruises in remote and scenic destinations and one replica coastal steamer carries 88 guests on a Northwest river cruise with an eye on history. The brochure offers a first peek at upcoming destinations—Galápagos in 2016 and Costa Rica/Panama in late 2015.

“New adventures in Central and South America are a welcome addition, especially for returning guests who are ready for a new Un-Cruise destination,” said Captain Dan Blanchard, CEO. “These small group adventures will also be trips of a lifetime with our unique multi-sport exploration in nature’s most enriching hideaways.”

Debuting in 2016, an inclusive nine-night vacation in Ecuador visits two UNESCO World Heritage Sites—Quito and Galápagos Islands.  The adventure begins with two nights at Casa Gangotena, a 31-room boutique hotel in Quito’s historic center and a full day of dining and tours exploring the historic city. The seven-night island cruise sails from San Cristóbal Island aboard the 48-guest La Pinta and visits both island favorites of Española and Genovesa. Other islands visited include Santa Cruz, Bartolomé, Santiago and Chinese Hat Islet.

Departure dates in 2016 include February 17, March 16 and 30, May 25, July 6, August 3, September 14 and November 9. Adventures include transfers, air between Quito and Galápagos, fees/taxes, tours and adventure activities, wine/beer/spirits on board La Pinta.  For 2016, rates begin at $8,995 per person for the inclusive land tour and island cruise adventure.   Extensions will include a three-night cruise on the Napo River in the Amazon and a six-night journey to Machu Picchu.

The 64-guest Safari Voyager will sail inclusive weeklong adventures exploring Costa Rica and Panama beginning in December 2015. Details are pending.

Southeast Alaska – From April-September, two boutique yachts and four small ships sail adventure cruises from homeports of Ketchikan, Sitka and Juneau with few, if any, port calls and a focus on outdoor adventure, nature and wildlife. 

Hawai‘i—The 36-guest Safari Explorer visits four islands from November-April. Weeklong adventures sail between Moloka‘i and Hawai‘i and visit Lana‘i and Maui. An inclusive vacation option, the Safari Explorer is the only small overnight passenger ship in the islands. 

Mexico’s Sea of Cortés—From November-March, the 84-guest Safari Endeavour explores the marine-rich waters of the sea and scenic, remote desert islands on weeklong adventures from San José del Cabo, Baja. 

Columbia & Snake Rivers—From April-November, the 88-guest S.S. Legacy plies the rivers roundtrip Portland, Oregon visiting towns and points of historical interest on a scenic  weeklong river cruise stretching from the verdant west to Hells Canyon, the deepest river gorge in North America. All shoreside tours are included. A new wine cruise itinerary is offered on four departures.

Coastal Washington & British Columbia—In spring and fall, the 60-guest Wilderness Adventurer explores the islands and shoreline of coastal Washington and the 22-guest Safari Quest ventures north to explore British Columbia and Princess Louisa Inlet.  Both adventure voyages sail from Seattle, Washington.

Travelers may uncover more details in the brochure. Kids in Nature cruises are planned for families traveling with children 12 and younger. Theme cruises – birding, craft beer, music, Lewis & Clark, marine biology, photography and wine—are peppered throughout the sailing calendar.  Each vessel’s deck plan, cabin categories and amenities appear in the back of the brochure.


To book or to request additional information, contact your travel agent or Un-Cruise Adventures at 888-862-8881 or sales@un-cruise.com.  


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Wednesday, 30 July 2014

Washington State’s coastal shores from South Hood with Mundy




Adventure and expedition cruise specialist, Mundy Adventures, is giving active travellers the chance to explore Washington State’s coastal shores from South Hood Canal to the Olympic Peninsula and San Juan Islands on a brand new seven-night voyage on the 60-guest expedition vessel, Wilderness Adventurer.

The new Explore! Olympic Wilderness & San Juan Islands itinerary round-trip from Seattle explores the scenic inlets and islands in Puget Sound with highlights including hiking in the Olympic Mountains, Mount Constitution and Washington State Parks; waterborne expeditions by kayaks, skiffs and paddle boards exploring glacial fjords and the San Juan archipelago; oyster and clam tasting hosted by a local family; and discovering native cultures in Port Townsend. Travellers will spend the week spotting marine life and seabirds as well as gray whales, orcas, seals, sea lions, bald eagles and tufted puffins, all of which live in the area. A knowledgeable team of expedition guides will lead excursions and provide interpretation along the way.

The Wilderness Adventurer expedition vessel carries a full complement of adventure gear for kayaking, stand-up paddle boarding, hiking and skiff excursions. A custom made kayak launching system allows four kayaks at once to quickly and safely launch off a stable platform. An underwater camera mounted on the ship’s bow streams video from the underwater world to flatscreen televisions in all guest rooms and the lounge. Also available is fitness equipment, a resource / DVD library, hot tub, daily yoga classes and delicious meals featuring fresh ingredients including locally sourced produce and seafood.

The seven-night Explore! Olympic Wilderness & San Juan Islands itinerary round-trip from Seattle explores South Hood Canal, Olympic Mountains, Quilcene Bay, Deception Pass, San Juan Islands, Lopez Island, Orcas Island, the towns of Port Townsend and Friday Harbor and Sucia Island. There are 13 departures in 2014 between 5th April and 1st November with prices starting from £2,195 per person including seven nights onboard the Wilderness Adventurer, all meals onboard, port taxes and fees, entry to national park and selected activities and equipment, one night pre-cruise hotel stay, transfers and direct British Airways flights from London Heathrow.

For further information and reservations, call Mundy Adventures on 020 7399 7630 or visit www.mundyadventures.co.uk



Tuesday, 29 July 2014

Enjoy a wee dram on a whisky themed voyage


Two American oak barrels full of 21 and 25-year-old Scotch whisky, which have been travelling around the World on Hurtigruten’s expedition ship, MS Fram, will be taking centre stage on a themed voyage in October 2014.
The barrels have spent almost a year crossing the world’s oceans from Antarctica to the Arctic Circle. On a voyage from Bergen to Hamburg in early October 2014, lecturer and whisky expert Bernard McGee will lead a whisky themed cruise to celebrate the bottling of the Scottish tipple.

Bernard will provide a guided tour through the world of the Scottish national drink. In his inspiring talks, he will give an insight into the history of whisky, presenting fascinating facts about taste and distillation. The newly bottled MS Fram whisky and other selected speciality whiskies that have matured far out at sea will be available to sample.

 Before the contents are drawn from the two barrels into a total of 400 bottles, the whisky will travel along the southern and eastern coast of Greenland, past the remote island of Jan Mayen and around the Arctic island of Spitsbergen. The single malt will then be bottled at 80 degrees north.

The unique whisky will only be available for purchase on board the MS Fram and for tastings in the ship’s bar – while stocks last!

The special themed voyage from Bergen to Hamburg on 2–4 October 2014 is available from £165pp based on two sharing an inside double cabin, including full board.
Flights and transfers from London Heathrow are available for an additional £330 per person.

For more information call Hurtigruten on tel: 020 3582 6642 or visit www.hurtigruten.co.uk.

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Crystal Cruises is introducing a new expedition-style voyage



Crystal Cruises is introducing a new expedition-style voyage traversing the Arctic Ocean via the legendary Northwest Passage – one so mysterious and remote (500 miles north of the Arctic Circle) that explorers spent centuries seeking the passage, until it was first completed successfully by Roald Amundsen just over 100 years ago.

Crystal will be the first ultra-luxury cruise line to ever navigate the route, manoeuvring through 900 miles of majestic waterways lined with spectacular glaciers, towering fjords and vast unspoiled landscapes away from mainstream civilisation and tourism, north of mainland Canada. Beginning 16th August 2016 in Anchorage/Seward, Alaska, the award-winning Crystal Serenity will sail for 32 nights from the Pacific to the Atlantic Ocean/New York City.

All-inclusive “Book Now” cruise only fares start at £13,953 per person, double occupancy, with additional Crystal Society savings starting from £309 per person and £1,875 in savings if booked by 29th August 2014.

For further information and reservations please call Crystal Cruises on 020 7399 7601 or visit www.crystalcruises.co.uk

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Sunday, 27 July 2014

One Ocean Expeditions, invited to take an active role in supporting the Canadian Government





Polar cruise operator, One Ocean Expeditions, has been invited to take an active role in supporting the Canadian Government on the Parks Canada and Royal 

Canadian Geographical Society (RCGS) historic 2014 Victoria Strait Expedition to find the fabled and long lost vessels of Sir John Franklin, Erebus and Terror.  A limited number of berths are available for adventurers and history buffs wanting to join the expedition's crew of scientists, sponsors and dignitaries and take a front row seat while this ambitious team attempts to complete a few chapters of polar history. 

Sailing onboard One Ocean Expeditions ice-strengthened vessel the One Ocean Voyager, the Victoria Strait Expedition is a 14-night voyage embarking and disembarking in Resolute (26 August - 9 September 2014), with ten days spent in the search area.  

Prices start at US$12,000 per person sharing a twin cabin up to US$26,000 per person for the One Ocean suite.  These prices are cruise only.  Bookings can be made with One Ocean Expeditions www.oneoceanexpeditions.com / telephone +351 962 721 836

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Friday, 25 July 2014

Save $600/couple on Hawai‘i cruises booked by July 31


Explore Four Islands By Yacht on Hawaii Adventure Cruise
With Un-Cruise Adventures


From November through April, Hawai‘i-bound travelers can explore four Hawaiian Islands—Hawai‘i, Maui, Moloka‘i, Lana‘i—by yacht on a weeklong cruise with small ship cruise line Un-Cruise Adventures.  An adventure savings of $600/couple is offered on bookings made by July 31, 2014 for cruises departing November 2014 – April 2015, excluding holiday departures on December 20 and 27.

Hawai‘i cruises sail one-way between Hawai‘i, the Big Island and Moloka‘i or reverse aboard the 36-guest Safari Explorer.  With an aft swim step and a full complement of water sports equipment, guests aboard the Safari Explorer enjoy the freedom of water exploration. Kayak through a lava tube or nearby volcanic cliffs. Jump in a skiff to look for whales or other marine life.  Watch dolphins off the bow. Snorkel among tropical fish, green sea turtles and dolphins.  Swim, sail or paddle board nearby the yacht.  Expert naturalists provide interpretation on guided excursions ashore and at sea.

To book or to request additional information, contact your travel agent or Un-Cruise Adventures at 888-862-8881 or sales@un-cruise.com.  

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Thursday, 24 July 2014

Bales Worldwide Nile Cruises

If you prefer something a bit more sedate and up market than the modern day Nile cruise then Bales Worldwide have four Dahabiyyas - the Amber, Musk, Nesma and Zahra - beautifully crafted 19th century style river sailboats that revive the elegant days when aristocrats and sophisticated travellers cruised the Nile. The vessels are fitted out in colonial style with oriental and Egyptian touches and comprise six individually designed cabins, an elegantly furnished lounge and two sun decks to admire the fascinating scenery while relaxing to the sound of the soft billowing sails and the ice chinking in the glass.
8 days  departing November 8   £2095
More Info:  0844 488 1158   www.balesworldwide.com

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Monday, 21 July 2014

Galapagos Small-Ship Cruise Operator, Ecoventura, To Launch the Islands’ Newest Premium Class Vessel



Ecoventura (http://www.ecoventura.com) that operates an environmentally friendly fleet of small expedition yachts in the Galapagos Islands plans to debut the region’s newest ship in early 2016.
 
While construction of the new motor vessel is underway at the shipyard in Guayaquil, Ecuador, Ecoventura is now taking bookings for MV Origin’s inaugural cruise Jan. 3, 2016. When launched she will be the newest and most comfortable 20-passenger yacht operating in Galapagos. The vessel will be owned by Ecoventura, a leader in social and environmental responsibility with over two decades of experience in sustainable tourism.



MV Origin, designed for guests with a highly evolved lifestyle, will combine modern sophistication and a high level of comfort and service, with quality guided land excursions in small groups, gastronomical experiences, exciting physical activities and a dose of intellectual science for a life enriching experience. A veteran crew supervised by a master-level captain, two expert naturalist guides and a concierge will be at the beck and call of guests. Social areas offer private moments on board with a library, boutique, computer station, lounge areas, dining room, bar, Jacuzzi, sun deck, recliners and wet bar.  See: http://www.origingalapagos.com/index.php/gallery/social-areas
There are two distinct itineraries on weekly (Sundays), year-round departures from the island of San Cristobal. The tours visit the most spectacular visitor sites of the archipelago; western/northern and central/southern.
See: http://www.origingalapagos.com/index.php/itineraries

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Sunday, 20 July 2014

Aurora Expeditions’ inaugural voyage into Puerto Williams


Aurora Expeditions has been a major contributor during important talks in Chile this month to discuss the country’s tourism development and planning. The tourism expansion includes opening Chile’s access to Antarctica after last year’s launch of Aurora Expeditions’ new Antarctic itineraries that include departures from Puerto Williams, the country’s most southerly port.

Aurora Expeditions will begin to operate expeditions in and out of Puerto Williams from this coming 2014-15 Antarctica season. There is still opportunity to join Aurora Expeditions’ inaugural voyage into Puerto Williams. The ‘Spirit of Antarctica’expedition will depart from Ushuaia on 6 December and finish in Puerto Williams on 17 December 2014. Prices start from US$8,700 per person and include a tour of Puerto Williams and a flight to Punta Arenas.


For more information please contact Aurora Expeditions on +61 2 9252 1033 or visit www.auroraexpeditions.com.au.  

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Saturday, 19 July 2014

SAVE £420pp with AMAwaterways





SAVE £420pp with AMAwaterways
19th September, 9 nights Mekong land-cruise holiday, saving £420pp
Save £420pp off a 9 night exotic holiday combining two nights in Siem Reap with a 7 night sailing from Siem Reap to Ho Chi Minh City, on board the AmaLotus, meandering along the Mekong and taking in floating markets, temples, historic cities and exotic towns and villages. AmaWaterways’ `Riches of the Mekong’ departure on 19th September 2014 is on offer for £2199pp, including return flights from London and transfers, saving £420pp. Contact AmaWaterways on 0808 256 8422, www.amawaterways.co.uk


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Friday, 18 July 2014

Titan launches its largest Worldwide Brochure to date with 23 new tours for 2015



Titan (0800 988 5873, www.titantravel.co.uk), the multi-award-winning travel company, has unveiled its 2015 Worldwide brochure of escorted touring itineraries across the globe.  

And in keeping with Titan’s commitment to offering outstanding value for money, many itineraries benefit from reduced single supplements, and there are early-booking discounts (of between £50 and £500 per person) for reservations made before the end of September 2014*. Further benefits include complimentary river cruise cabin upgrades and for the first time direct flights from Manchester on selected departures.

As for the choice of river cruises, several of the new additions come with the added advantage of privately chartered vessels, exclusively for Titan customers. For those wishing to explore the legendary Rhine, a choice of memorable 6-night, 9-night and 12-night itineraries can be enjoyed on the informal 3-star MS Arlene which accommodates 104 passengers in comfortable surroundings, with delicious cuisine and attentive service, all at a quite outstanding holiday prices from £999 per person for the 6-night ‘Towns and Castles of Medieval Germany’ itinerary. Cost includes a 6-night cruise, most meals with complimentary wine, beer and soft drinks at lunch and dinner, 2 included excursions, the services of the Titan Tour Manager and the VIP Home Departure Service.

*The maximum early booking discount is £500pp (on A Passage Through Africa, Christmas and New Year Down Under, Festive New Zealand, The Best of New Zealand and the Bay of Islands, and Land of the Long White Cloud). £450pp is available on South American Discovery. £400pp is available on Highlights of Australia and Antipodean Discovery. Discounts are subject to availability and might be reduced prior to 30 September 2014.


For details or to book call Titan on 0800 988 5873 or visit www.titantravel.co.uk

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Thursday, 17 July 2014

A photography exhibition of the Falkland Islands’ heritage, wildlife and environment

‘We Are Falklands’

A photography exhibition of the Falkland Islands’ heritage, wildlife and environment

This exhibition is kindly supported by Falkland Islands Holdings Plc

Mall Galleries,  The Mall,  0203 327 4064

The exhibition will run from Monday, 21st July until Sunday, 27th July 2014, 10am to 5pm (closes at 1pm on final day).  Admission free.

Find out more at: www.falklands.gov.fk or follow us on Twitter @FalklandsGov 


Falklands Tourist Board www.falklandislands.com

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Wednesday, 16 July 2014

Some great offers from Pandaw River Cruises



Some great offers from Pandaw River Cruises


Seven-night Mandalay Pagan Packet – Exclusive limited offer at £500 per person (no single supplements)
Ship: RV Kalaw Pandaw
Departure information: 6 September 2014
Departing from Mandalay and calling at Mingun, Kyauk-Myoung, Ava, Yandabo, Pakokku and Pagan for an overnight stay.
Price:
Cruise only from £500.00


The Golden Land: 10-night cruise-only  10% early booking discount
Ship: Pandaw II
Departure information: 15 October 2015
Departing from Amarapura and callig at Yandabo, Pagan (for an overnight stay), Magwe, Minhla and Gwechaung, Prome (Pyay), A Kauktaung, Danupyu, Twante and Rangoon.
Price:
Cruise only from £2,150pp

Offer valid until 19 December 2014

Seven-night Saigon and Siem Reap cruise-only  20% discount and no single supplements
Ship: RV Mekong Pandaw
Departure information: 13 December 2014
Departing from Siem Reap and calling at Kampong Cham, the Tonle River, Phnom Penh, Chau Doc, Sa Dec and My Tho.
Price:
Cruise only from £1,212pp

For reservations and further information, please contact:
Tel: + 44 203 287 6113


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Tuesday, 15 July 2014

Windstar Cruises to Début Exclusive Private Events on all 2015 Voyages


Small luxury cruise line expands 2015 Voyage Collection
to offer new complimentary Private Events

 Starting in 2015, all Windstar Cruises’ itineraries will feature a spectacular onshore Private Event, created exclusively for Windstar guests. These complimentary events are crafted to give guests an in depth and authentic local experience that compliments their voyage. Private Events include activities such as an after-hours tour and dinner under the stars in the magnificent Celsus Library of Ephesus or a private ballet performance in the famed Odessa 

New Private Events featured on 2015 voyages:
Asia
  • Phuket: A Feast for the Senses: Featured on the Singapore & the Malay Peninsula voyage, guests will start the evening with a performance by local dancers and a Long Drum Parade, followed by dinner at the award-winning restaurant, Sala Bua (Pavilion of Lotus), overlooking the Andaman Sea, and a private performance of graceful Thai dance.
  • Hoi An: Dreams of Floating Lanterns: Featured on the Treasures of Southeast Asia, Southeast Asia Unveiled, and Southeast Asia Unveiled & Angkor Wat Cruisetour voyages, guests will start the evening with a private performance of lion dancers, before dining in the beautiful Nam Long restaurant surrounded by lush gardens on the Thu Bon River. Floating lanterns gliding down the river accompanied by traditional music and dancers will add to the enchantment of the evening. Guests will also have the opportunity to take part in interactive workshops of Vietnamese letter drawing, lantern-making, and wood-engraving. 
Arabia
  • Luxor: Temples and Tombs on the Nile: Featured on the Wonders of Arabia and Wonders of Civilization Cruisetour voyages, guests will travel to Luxor for a two-day tour of the Luxor Temple that includes an evening showing of the Sound and Light display at Karnak Temple, and a one-night hotel stay in the Hilton Luxor. On the second day of the tour, guests will explore the Valley of the Kings – the most important archaeological site in the world that features the tombs of King Tutankhamun and Ramses IV – followed by lunch aboard a felucca, a traditional sailboat, as they float down the Nile.
Greek Isles, Turkey & Black Sea
  • Rhodes: The Tantalizing Tastes of Greece: Featured on the Greek Isles & Turkish Delights (Athens to Istanbul) voyage, guests will be wined and dined at the award winning Hatzikelis Fish Taverna in Rhodes that will include a sampling of traditional and modern Greek fare and wines from the local Cair Winery, followed by an exhilarating performance by local musicians and dancers.  
  • Kusadasi: Evening in Ephesus: Featured on the Greek Isles & Turkish Delights (Istanbul to Athens) and Pride of the Aegean voyages, guests will enjoy an after-hours tour of the magnificent Celsus Library of Ephesus. The evening includes a five-course, white-glove-service dinner in the courtyard of the Library serenaded by a trio from the Aegean Chamber Orchestra.
  • Odessa: Artistry in Architecture and Dance: Featured on the Black Sea Tapestry voyage, guests will enjoy an exclusive ballet performance in the Odessa National Opera and Ballet Theatre – one of the most important landmarks of Eastern Europe designed by Viennese architects F. Felner and H. Helmer. The evening also includes champagne and canapés served during intermission, and a chance sighting of the famed ghost of Pavlova.
Caribbean & Panama Canal
  • Prickly Pear Beach: Island Beach Party: Featured on the Yachtsman's Caribbean Voyage the event includes a day of relaxation and fun on Prickly Pear Beach, a secluded and uninhabited nature refuge in the British Virgin Islands. Activities include water skiing, kayaking, snorkeling, friendly games of beach volleyball, horseshoes, and bocce ball, and a lunch of freshly grilled local seafood.
  • Mayreau: Private Beach Getaway: Featured on the Jewels of the Windward Islands voyage, this Private Event includes a day in paradise on the small island of Mayreau. Guests will enjoy music and a Mixology Class to learn how to make favorite local drinks, in addition to an amazing lunch of fresh local food.
  • St. Lucia: Getaway in Paradise: Featured on the Classic Caribbean voyage, guests will spend a day of fun and adventure on a secluded beach on Pigeon Island, where the bar is open and the steel drums are playing. Guests can take part in an escorted snorkeling excursion or a number of water sports. After working up an appetite, Windstar chefs will serve a dinner of local fresh fish, lobster, and the uniquely Caribbean specialty, conch.
  • Isla de Coiba: Tropical Beach Delights: Featured on the Passage Through Panama voyage, guests will have opportunity to explore the Isla de Coiba, an UNESCO World Heritage Site, accessed only by special permit. Snorkel or take a guided hiking tour through the island’s untouched natural beauty. The day will be accompanied by live music, cocktails, and a beachside lunch.
Italy
  • Messina: Taste of Sicily: Featured on the Classic Italy & Dalmatian Coast voyage, the event begins with a wine tasting and tour of Vinicola Benanti, a family-run winery, followed by lunch featuring traditional Sicilian food paired with a selection of the family’s wines.
  • Monte Carlo: Glitter & Games: Featured on the Yachting the Riviera, Rivera Enchantment, and Glitter & Glam of the Riveras voyages, guests will enjoy red carpet treatment during an on deck cocktail party set against the glittering backdrop of Monte Carlo. After dinner and cocktails on board, guests will enjoy a champagne and dessert reception in the legendary Grand Casino, followed by an evening of gaming in the city.
  • Agrigento: Beauty Among the Ruins: Featured on the Sicilian Splendors voyage, guests will enjoy an exclusive tour through the Valley of Temples – one of the most important archaeological sites in the world that features ancient temples and edifices built between 510 and 430 B.C. The day will include lunch at the five-star Hotel Villa Athena.
Mediterranean
  • Giardini Naxos: Taste of Sicily: Featured on the Enchanting Greece & the Amalfi Coast voyage, the event begins with a wine tasting and tour of Vinicola Benanti, a family-run winery, followed by lunch featuring traditional Sicilian food paired with a selection of the family’s wines.
  • Mallorca: Bolero, Fandango, and Other Works of Art: Featured on the Islands of the West Med and Spanish Serenade voyages, this event features a private guided tour through the March Palace, which features a renowned works of art collection. At the end of the tour, guests will enjoy tapas on the terrace and a performance by 30 local artists featuring Mallorcan folk dances such as the bolero, the jack, the fandango, and the copeo.
  • Cádiz: Best of Breed – Andalusian Horses and Sherry: Featured on the Splendors of Southern Spain voyage, this event starts with a tour and sherry tasting at the internationally recognized González Byass Bodega. The day also includes a spectacular equestrian ballet performed at the Royal Andalusian School of Equestrian Art Foundation, followed by tapas and a sherry tasting.
  • Marrakech: Textures and Treasures: Featured on the Casablanca & the Canary Islands voyage, this event starts with a tour of the famed Majorelle Gardens, followed by a private lunch served in the heart of the exclusive Palm Groves neighborhood of Marrakech. Guests will go on to visit the holy site of Ben Youssef Madrasa – a stunning example of 16th century Moorish architecture – followed by treasure hunting in Souk Smarine. Guests will end the day in Djemaa el Fna square, where fireeaters, mime artists, snake charmers, and street musicians perform.
  • Butrint: Bronze Age to Venetians: Featured on the Venetian Passageways voyage guests will enjoy a day of exploration in Butrint, which features some of the world’s most significant and beautiful Roman ruins. The day will also include a presentation by the former director and founder of Butrint National Park, Auron Tare, followed by a cocktail reception.
Northern Europe
  • St. Petersburg: Private Reception at the Catherine Palace: Featured on the Baltic Delights voyage, this event includes an exclusive tour through the Palace led by guides and followed by a champagne reception in the Throne Room, accompanied by “Catherine the Great” herself who will take part in a Farewell Dance in the Courtyard before departing in her royal carriage. 
  • Bordeaux: A Perfect Blend: Featured on the Culinary & Wine Delights of Spain & France voyage guests will enjoy a wine tasting and estate tour of the Chateau Giscours. The tour includes a French cooking class at the Halle Suzanne followed by dinner accompanied by a quartet of classical musicians.
  • Porto: Songs and Spirits of Portugal: Featured on the Gems of France & Iberia and Best of Europe's West Coast voyages this event includes a guided tour through the historic center of Porto, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and the Ferreira Cellars, where guests will enjoy a glass of port accompanied by a fado performance by the national known singer, Joana Costa.
  • Nærøyfjord: Dramatic Passage: Featured in the Lands of the Midnight Sun voyage, this event includes a sailing tour of the cascading waterfalls and stunning beauty of Nærøyfjord – a UNESCO World Heritage Site rated by the National Geographic Society as the world's number one natural heritage site in 2006. The tour will include a picnic of regional delicacies as guests enjoy the vivid scenery.
  • Ijmuiden: Swords and Dungeons: Featured on the Northern Europe Wonderlands voyage, this event includes a guided tour through Forteiland, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and one-of-a-kind fortress built half underground near Amsterdam. Following the day of exploration, guests will also enjoy a candlelit tapas dinner in the Koepelzaal (Dome Hall).
  • Copenhagen: An Evening with Princes and the Gods: Featured on the Spectacular Scandinavia and Scandinavian Tapestry voyages, this event includes a canal cruise through Copenhagen and a tour through The National Museum, closed to the public for Windstar’s exclusive use. The tour will also feature a classic Danish smorgasbord paired with local beverages.
  • SAIL Amsterdam: Parade Of Tall Ships: Featured on the Windmills & Tall Sails voyage, guests will have deck-side seats to one of the world’s largest sailing parades on board Wind Surf. Enjoy a lunch and cocktails as the yacht sails with hundreds of sailing heritage craft, modern and naval ships, and historical replicas during SAIL Amsterdam.
  • Culloden: Fields of the Bonnie Prince: Featured on the Gaelic Explorers voyage, guests will enjoy canapés and champagne at Fort George, during an exclusive after-hours tour with expert guides who will take guests through the history of Bonnie Prince Charlie and the Highlanders loss to the Duke of Cumberland during the Battle On The Moor. The event will include the traditional military and musical performance, Beating Retreat, complete with pipes, drums, and marches.


For more information including rates and itineraries, contact a travel professional or call Windstar at 800-258-7245. Visit Windstar Cruises online at WindstarCruises.com

Sunday, 13 July 2014

European Waterways has waived the single supplement this Summer on four August cruises

Savings of up to £1,250 for Solo Travellers
* Canal du Midi and Burgundy regions of France*

European Waterways has waived the single supplement this Summer on four August cruises in the appealing Canal du Midi and Burgundy regions of France. For solo travellers wishing to join family, friends, or other passengers, with a cabin all to themselves, no single supplement will apply on the following 6-night cruises next month:

Canal du Midi:
The ‘no single supplement’ offer applies to the classic, 8-passenger, Anjodi departures:
10 August cruising from Castelnaudary past Carcassonne to Homps
17 August cruising from picturesque Le Somail to the lakeside fishing village of Marseillan

Pricing is £2,850 per person, saving £1,000 and includes all meals, wines, an open bar, excursions and local transfers.

Burgundy:
The ‘no single supplement’ offer applies to the spacious, 12-passenger, La Belle Epoque departures:
17 August cruising the Burgundy Canal from Tanlay to Venarey-les-Laumes
24 August cruising the return journey from Venarey-les-Laumes to Tanlay

Pricing leads in at £3,090 per person on 17 August, saving £1,100and at £3,550 per person on 24 August, saving £1,250and includes all meals, wines, an open bar, excursions and local transfers.

Tel: +44(0) 1753 598555    Full details: www.gobarging.com:        

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Saturday, 12 July 2014

Seabourn announces world-class expedition team for 2014-15 Antarctica and Patagonia voyages


Expert Naturalists, Lecturers and Award-Winning Photographers to lead the way

Seabourn has brought together a world-class expedition team for its 2014-2015 Ultimate Antarctica & Patagonia voyages aboard Seabourn Quest, beginning in November 2014. The 17-person team is among the largest on any ship bound for Antarctica and with their extensive collective expertise and knowledge of the “White Continent” and expedition travel will ensure guests have the ultimate experience on board and ashore during the four 21 to 24-day voyages.

Handpicked and led by Seabourn Expedition Programme Manager and Leader Robin West, the expedition team comprises naturalists, scientists, cultural and historical experts, and other lecturers, many of whom are returning for their second season having participated in the cruise line’s inaugural Antarctic season. Award-winning nature photographers will offer tips on digital photography to help guests capture the diverse wildlife and remarkable landscapes. From distant sightings onboard to landings ashore, the team will who share their wealth of knowledge and passion for Antarctica and add valuable insight to the adventure.

Beginning on 29th November 2014, Seabourn Quest will sail on a series of four 21 to 24-day voyages between Valparaíso (Santiago), Chile and Buenos Aires, Argentina. Each includes days exploring the Chilean coast and fjords, Beagle Channel, Glacier Alley, the breathtaking Torres del Paine National Park, the Falkland/Malvinas Islands, Montevideo and six days of cruising and landings on the Antarctic Continent in uncompromised Seabourn luxury. 

A 24-day trip departing on 20th December 2014, will include two days exploring the sub-Antarctic wildlife Eden of South Georgia, renowned for its beauty and vast, teeming rookeries of king penguins and other seabirds, as well as breeding elephant and fur seals.

For more information or to book call 0843 373 2000 or visit www.seabourn.co.uk  

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Wednesday, 9 July 2014

Antarctic Odyssey with Noble Caledonia


Here's an expedition to the Falkland Islands, South Georgia, South Shetlands and Antarctica aboard Sea Explorer with Noble Caledonia


Follow in the footsteps of famous researchers, pioneers, adventurers and discoverers on this expedition cruise to the sixth continent.  

Although South Georgia is a couple of days extra steaming from Antarctica it is well worth the effort. Here you will experience one of the world’s natural wonders, the ‘Alps in mid-ocean’, offering remarkable concentrations of wildlife against a backdrop of glaciers and snow-covered mountains. Hugging the coast to the wildest reaches of the island you land on beaches alive with fur seals, elephant seals and truly astonishing numbers of king penguins.

Before disembarking in Montevideo you head for the Falkland Islands and The Antarctic peninsula.    Departing  27th October 2015 and 28th January 2016.

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Monday, 7 July 2014

Aurora Expeditions’ Photography Guide awarded 2014 Victorian AIPP EPSON Photographer of the Year



Aurora Expeditions’ are proud to announce that their resident Polar Photography Guide, Joshua Holko, has been awarded the 2014 Victorian Australian Institute of Professional Photography (AIPP) EPSON ‘Photographer of the Year’ for his stunning photograph taken in Antarctica during his November 2013 expedition on board the company’s small expedition vessel, Polar Pioneer.

With an image featuring Aurora Expeditions’ small expedition ship, Polar Pioneer, and a vast tabular iceberg, Joshua, a Moab Master and full-time professional landscape, nature and wilderness photographer and teacher, also won the award’s ‘Science, Environment and Nature Photographer of the Year’ and ‘Creative Award of the Year’.

“It’s a great honour to have been named the 2014 Victorian AIPP EPSON ‘Photographer of the Year’. My love and passion for photography is only heightened by the fact that I get to team my profession with visiting some of the most amazing places on earth. Antarctica is truly one of the most photogenic places I have ever visited.” said Joshua.

Joshua will be joining Aurora Expeditions ‘Spirit of Antarctica’ expedition in December this year and is inviting budding photographers to join him on board to discover the art of professional photography.  The 12-day voyage will allow passengers to spend time honing their photography skills amongst the ice and wildlife of Antarctica alongside one of Australia’s most inspiring photographers.
              
Delivering Canon- and AIPP-accredited workshops, Joshua will run an exclusive and complimentary on board photography program that is open to all levels of photographer. The program also includes informal talks and image reviews, opportunities for one-on-one instruction and informal side-by-side shooting from the deck, in Zodiacs and during shore landings.

The expedition aboard small ship Polar Pioneer, accommodates just 54 passengers plus a team of Expedition Experts including naturalists and historians. The small ship experience ensures passengers enjoy the highest staff: passenger ratio and have the opportunity to truly maximise photographic opportunities.  Polar Pioneer is supported by a fleet of Zodiacs and crew allowing all photographers to be shooting simultaneously with plenty of room to spare for camera equipment.

The ‘Spirit of Antarctica’ voyage featuring complimentary photography workshops with award-winning photographer, Joshua Holko, departs 6 to 17 December 2014 from Ushuaia in Argentina. The expedition price starts from US$8,700 per person, triple share and includes a complimentary waterproof polar jacket and hardback voyage journal, plus all accommodation, meals, shore excursions, guiding services, landing fees and photography program.

Join Joshua on this exciting Antarctic adventure and hone your photography skills in the most beautiful place on Earth.


For more information visit www.auroraexpeditions.com.au or freecall (Australia only) 1800 637 688  or +61 2 9252 1033 to speak to an Expedition Expert.