Wednesday, 31 July 2013

 New partnership brings additional Rail and Cruise itineraries to/from Seattle and Vancouver ~

The internationally recognised Rocky Mountaineer train is pleased to announce a new global partnership with Norwegian Cruise Line, which will offer even more Rail and Cruise holiday options in 2014.

Connecting with Rocky Mountaineer’s new Coastal Passage rail route out of Seattle, WA as well as train departures from Vancouver, 
, guests are invited to experience a stunning rail journey through the Pacific Northwest and the Canadian Rockies before or after their Norwegian cruise to Alaska. There are five different Rail and Cruise holiday packages available through Rocky Mountaineer for travel in 2014.  Each itinerary offers a unique opportunity for travellers to make the most of their visit to Western Canada and Alaska by linking the Rocky Mountaineer train with cruises on three of Norwegian’s ships: Norwegian Jewel, Norwegian Pearl and Norwegian Sun.

One of the most popular packages to add a Norwegian Cruise Line Alaskan Cruise to is the Canadian Rockies Highlights and Coastal Passage. Including the cruise, this holiday ranges from 13-14 days in length depending on direction selected. Guests enjoy a seven night roundtrip Alaskan cruise from Seattle onboard Norwegian Jewel or Norwegian Pearl plus a Rocky Mountaineer rail journey in either GoldLeaf or SilverLeaf Service. Whether departing from or arriving into Seattle, guests onboard the train are seamlessly connected to the Canadian Rockies with stays in such renowned destinations as Vancouver, Banff and Lake Louise.  An unforgettable helicopter flight over the towering Canadian Rockies tops off this incredible holiday experience.

For more information on Rocky Mountaineer’s Rail and Cruise Holidays, please contact your ABTA travel agent or Rocky Mountaineer directly on 00-800-0606-7372 or at

Tuesday, 30 July 2013

26th July 2013 : Grand cruise through Russia, £2699, saving £ 541 + free flights  & transfers 
Cruise Russia’s Volga-Baltic waterway and Europe’s two largest lakes, Onega and Ladoga, sailing from St. Petersburg to Moscow. The 11 night sailing departs on 26th July and the price of £2699pp, saving £541 pp and including free return UK flights, transfers, daily sightseeing tours, all meals and complimentary wine with dinner. Contact AmaWaterways freephone 0808 223 5009,

16th August 2013 : `Rail & Sail’ : Paris & Normandy cruise, £ 2089 pp, saving £426 pp + free Eurostar travel  & transfers 
Take the Eurostar from Ebsfleet to Paris with Eurostar and cruise the Seine to Rouen on a 7 night cruise on board AmaWaterways luxury river cruiser AmaLegro. The price includes free Eurostar travel, non-UK transfers, all meals, daily sightseeing tours, complimentary wine and beer with lunch and  dinner. Contact AmaWaterways freephone 0808 223 5009,

16th August 2013 : 9 night Mekong cruise £2199pp, saving £339 pp 
Visit the temples, floating markets, monasteries, historic pagodas and rural villages of south east Asia, spend a day in Phnom Penh, two nights in Siem Reap and a day in Ho Chi Minh City . AmaWaterways’ `Riches of the Mekong’ cruise costs £2199 for departure on 16th August, saving £339pp, including the 7 night cruise and 2 nights hotel in Siem Riep, with return London flights, transfers, all meals , complimentary house spirits, beer and soft drinks and daily tours and excursions   during your cruise Contact AmaWaterways freephone 0808 223 5009,
 17th September 2013 : Douro valley river cruise,  £2279pp saving £104pp  
 AmaWaterways is offering a 7 night Douro river cruise with free return flights from London and transfers, for £2279pp, saving £104. The cruise embarks and disembarks in Porto and meanders through vineyards and past fishing villages along the picturesque Douro valley and the price includes all meals, daily sightseeing tours, complimentary wine and beer with  lunch and  dinner. Contact AmaWaterways freephone 0808 223 5009,

27th September 2013 : Rhine cruise with £300pp  £2085pp saving + free flights  & transfers 
Departing on 27th September 2013 AmaWaterways is offering a 7 night luxury Rhine river cruise from Amsterdam to Basel, visiting Cologne, Heidelberg, Strasbourg and the Black Forest. The price of £2085pp saves £300pp and includes free flights from London, non-UK transfers, all meals, daily sightseeing tours, complimentary wine and beer with  lunch and dinner. Contact AmaWaterways freephone 0808 223 5009,
18th November 2013 : The Romantic Danube wine cruise, saving £346pp + free flights  & transfers 
 Cruise through the autumn colours of Austria’s Wachau Valley and join in Oktoberfest festivities in Vilshofen. Taste beer and wine in wineries and breweries between  Vilshofen  and Budapest  and enjoy presentations from top wine experts on a 7 nights celebration of wine sailing on board the luxury 5* river cruiser, AmaCerto. Departing on 1 8 th November the cruise price of £1465pp includes a saving of £346pp, with free return UK flights, daily tours and excursions, wine presentations, all meals with free-flowing wine with lunch and dinner, free Wi-Fi and free use of on-board bicycles. Contact AmaWaterways freephone 0808 223 5009, 

22nd November : The Enchanting Rhine wine cruise,  £1499pp saving £346 pp + free flights  & transfers 
Sip and sail on a 7 night wine appreciation cruise from Amsterdam to Basel on board the luxurious river cruiser AmaCello, The cruise price of £1499pp (saving £346 pp) includes free flights from London, complimentary visits to vineyards, beer and wine tastings, themed dinners with wine pairings, daily tours and excursions, wine presentations, as well as free flights, all meals with free-flowing wine with lunch and dinner, free Wi-Fi and free use of on-board bicycles. Contact AmaWaterways freephone 0808 223 5009,

Monday, 29 July 2013

AdventureSmith Explorations,

The World’s Leading Online Resource
For Small Ship Cruising Just Got Better
AdventureSmith Explorations Enhances Website
With New Trip Planning, Research, Reservation Features

The active travel company securing matches between adventure-seeking clients and a treasure trove of small expedition ships, AdventureSmith Explorations, announces a newly re-launched and enhanced website that makes researching and booking destinations, departures and types of cruises and land programs both quicker and easier.

AdventureSmith Explorations ( currently represents over 80 percent of the expedition ships (carrying between 12 and 100 guests) in Alaska and its percentages are growing in Central and South America, Asia/Pacific, North America, polar regions and the Mediterranean.

“Visitors to our new website are noticing how easy it is to navigate through the pages and have commented on how accurate and detailed the information we provide is, often much more complete than even the ship’s own website,” noted Todd Smith, founder/director.

For example, for trip planning purposes, each trip has an arrival/departure note with advice on when and where to arrive so travelers can begin to plan flights.  There’s a staff review of each ship from an AdventureSmith Explorations team member who has personally inspected or cruised aboard (in addition to the standard ship information with cabin descriptions, deck plans, photo images, etc.).

“Our new website provides the same level of trip and ship detail in a more digestible format (using tabs) so users are not overwhelmed by the amount of information available,” explained Smith. “The site is fully integrated into a new reservation system that will allow our experts to provide even more accurate and timely service and information to our clients.”

Other website enhancements include:
  • Larger images and videos (when available) to bring each trip and ship to life.
  • Route maps explaining the course and itinerary.
  • Detailed pricing and cabin category descriptions for each departure date.
  • Suggested tips directing users to other trips similar to the one they are looking at.
  • Trip extension options for pre- or post-cruise add-ons.
  • Easy to find accommodation descriptions.
  • Travel Journals - Read trip reports from AdventureSmith experts and recent travelers to really understand what the trip experience is all about.
  • A new travel agent area for agents to learn about AdventureSmith Explorations and the company’s style of travel. Agents can download an agent manual with commissions, policies and tips to help agents sell adventure cruises. Agents can also sign up to become a travel partner.
  • A new media center with resources for travel writers and editors.
  • Research Tools -- Adventure Cruise News Blog, Travel Journals from staff and travelers and Trip Reviews and Ratings, all connecting to trips, ships and other content to provide even more insight to users researching small ship cruises.
  • Social media integration – Facebook, Twitter, You Tube and Pinterest icons that allow users to share content and notify friends when they are shopping or have purchased a trip.
  • Travel Planner – A section of the website dedicated to helping travelers research and prepare for all aspects of their journey including flights, travel insurance, health information, packing lists, passports and documents.  
Founded in 2003, AdventureSmith Explorations is based in Tahoe City, CA, along the northern shore of Lake Tahoe. In 2012, owner Todd Smith joined the ranks of Conde Nast Traveler's prestigious 14th Annual Travel Specialists List as the world’s expert on small ship expeditions, a distinction that was repeated again in 2013. For information, availability and 2013 reservations Phone: 800-728-2875 toll-free, visit or Email:

Sunday, 28 July 2013

Late availability on the Canal du Midi

Late availability on the Canal du Midi with special offers applying

Luxury hotel barge operator European Waterways offers a range of relaxing, 6-night cruises on the waterways of France, including this Summer aboard the 8-passenger Enchanté, with its spacious cabins, which are the largest of any hotel barge on the 300-year old Canal du Midi, a UNESCO world heritage site.

The tree-lined Canal du Midi - with its attractive towpaths for walkers, joggers and bikers - runs along the sun-drenched Mediterranean shore of South-Western France before meandering inland with magnificent views of the snow-capped Pyrenees Mountains and the rolling Minervois vineyards.

Enchanté, with its double decks is contemporary in style, with 4 beautifully-appointed, en-suite twin, or double suites, air-conditioning, a large lounge/saloon, sun deck with hot tub, alfresco dining area, and a demonstration galley where guests can watch the skilled chef at work.  The Enchante’s tastefully furnished interior features exotic hardwoods and a remodelled dining area with a stylish, contemporary twist, bring to this barge “a new level of luxury and comfort on the famed Canal du Midi,” according to Derek Banks, managing director of European Waterways. 

Currently availability exists on two 6-night, all-inclusive cruises aboard Enchanté, departing on either 11 or 18 August, with cruise fares starting from £3,170 per person, which include a £500pp reduction.

Like all the hotel barges in the European Waterways fleet, Enchante will be fully crewed with a captain, gourmet chef, hostesses and a tour guide. Based on double occupancy, all fares include: include: comfortable accommodation in air-conditioned, en- suite cabins, all gourmet meals on board, fine wines, open bar, daily escorted shore excursions, entrance fees, local transfers and the use of all barge facilities such as bicycles to explore the towpaths.

Alternatively, for those wishing to travel with friends or family - ideal for multi-generational holidays - Enchanté can be chartered exclusively at 10% off on two selected departures:  4 August and 27 October 2013. The cost for a 6-passenger charter:  £22,842 including the 10% reduction.
Please view Enchanté link:

Full details: Reservations Tel: +44(0) 1753 598555   

Friday, 26 July 2013

Two Ways to Explore Iceland with Zegrahm Expeditions in 2014

Small-Ship Voyages in the Company of Expert Leaders Offer Explorers a Comprehensive (and Exclusive) View of Iceland and the Arctic

 Zegrahm Expeditions, the world leader in small-ship cruising and overland adventures, is pleased to present two extraordinary voyages to the element-sculpted Land of Fire and Ice in 2014. Since nearly 75% of Iceland can only be reached by ship, traveling aboard the 100-guest, all-suite Island Sky is the perfect way to explore—her small size and fleet of Zodiacs allow travelers to cruise along the sheer cliffs and isolated fjords that larger ships simply can’t access to the view the country’s phenomenal bird- and marine-life.

Departing on June 13, 2014, the 14-day Circumnavigation of Iceland allows travelers to explore the country in depth. Highlights include exploring Iceland’s fabled Golden Circle, Thingvellir National Park, Gullfoss Waterfall, and the Geysir Center; taking an exhilarating snowmobile ride across Vatnajokull, Europe’s largest glacier; and photographing Iceland’s stunning landscapes from bubbling hot springs and glittering glaciers to soaring volcanoes and plunging waterfalls. This expedition is priced from $10,970 per person.

Zegrahm’s 20-day Across the Arctic Circle: Iceland & Svalbard, departing June 24, 2014, will spend six full days exploring Iceland before venturing up to Svalbard, crossing the Arctic Circle en route. Travelers will receive a great introduction to the wonders of Iceland on this voyage, and then be treated to over a week of true Arctic exploration. Seeking out Svalbard’s iconic polar bears will be the main goal while exploring this Norwegian archipelago. Additional highlights include visits to historic research and whaling stations and opportunities to spot thousands of breeding seabirds such as kittiwakes and puffins. This expedition is priced from $13,970 per person.

“We are thrilled to return to Iceland in 2014, and the expedition team we have assembled couldn’t be better,” said Zegrahm President, Edwin Blythe. “Zegrahm cofounder, Mike Messick, will be leading both expeditions. Plus, he will be joined by, among others, Iceland native, Ragnar Hauksson, who will discuss the everyday life of Icelanders coupled with the folk stories, fairy tales, and sagas that have heavily influenced modern-day Iceland; and ornithologist, Jim Wilson, who is an authority on the birds and wildlife of Northern Europe.”

For more information about Zegrahm or to make a reservation on an upcoming expedition, please visit or call 1-800-628-8747.

Thursday, 25 July 2013

Pole Position For Abercrombie & Kent

Abercrombie & Kent has just launched a new Pole to Pole brochure, detailing A&K’s inaugural expeditions to the Arctic which will complement the Antarctic voyages it has been undertaking for over a quarter of a century. In provides the facts, figures and inspiration to explore both poles with some of the most experienced luxury polar expeditionary teams in the world.

A&K polar voyages are the ultimate adventure, renowned for their luxury, environmental lightness of touch and world class guides. With 25 years’ experience in polar cruising, A&K brings the surreal magic of the ‘white continent’ and the Arctic within reach with four Antarctic cruises in winter 2014/2015 and two Arctic cruises in summer 2014.

Le Boreal is the most luxurious and environmentally friendly vessel plying these far flung oceans. Exclusively chartered for each A&K cruise, she carries just 199 passengers, well short of full capacity, to ensure every passenger enjoys a spacious cabin with outside balcony. Being within the Category 1 limit for all landing sites and shore excursions, passengers enjoy the maximum opportunity to explore the polar landscapes and observe the wildlife.

A&K polar guides are famed for their expertise, professional qualifications and infectious enthusiasm. They are leading authorities in their areas of speciality and include top ornithologists, marine biologists, naturalists and geologists. The guide-to-passenger ratio of 1 to 12 is unsurpassed, ensuring a fascinating personal insight into the heart of poles both on board and on shore.

A&K polar expeditions exceed all environmental protocols of operation; Le Boreal is at the cutting edge of green practices and technology such as a computerised dynamic positioning system that eliminates the need to drop anchor in fragile marine reserves. Nothing, however, detracts from the legendary A&K service which permeates from start to finish and renders any one of our polar cruises an unforgettable opportunity to observe the last great wildernesses on the planet.

Wednesday, 24 July 2013

Exodus Expeditions Set sail


An exploration of the wildlife and culture of the Canadian Arctic coupled with the glaciers and icebergs of Greenland. The islands visited during this expedition range from the largest in the Canadian Arctic - Baffin Island - through to the world's largest - Greenland. With such diversity found in both the landscape and culture among these two islands, this voyage is a unique and exciting Arctic adventure taking place on the Akademik Ioffe. Finnish-built for the Russian Academy of Science, this stable yet manoeuverable ship was designed to travel quietly during hydro-acoustic research. First departure 4 August 2013. Prices start from £4,930 per person for 11 days including accommodation and most meals. To book visit or call 0845 863 9601.

An expedition cruise in the Atlantic Provinces of Canada visiting Nova Scotia, Quebec and Newfoundland finishing with a jaunt across to France in Saint-Pierre et Miquelon. Starting in the seaside community of Sydney, Cape Breton, we take every opportunity to discover the Maritimes and the potential for amazing experiences both on and off the ship, the Akademik Ioffe. Embracing historical culture, musical talent, a variety of marine mammals and hundreds of thousands of seabirds, this voyage is truly a wildlife adventure.  Prices start from £4,000 per person for ten days including accommodation and most meals. To book visit or call 0845 863 9601.

The journey begins sailing east to South Georgia. Ernest Shackelton is buried here under the spectacular ice crowned mountains. The ship will thread her way through magical fjords to Salisbury Plain and Gold Harbour, places so remote that they have evolved into astonishing wildlife havens boasting a 100,000-plus population of King penguins and chicks on their beaches. The island also supports significant populations of Elephant and Fur seals. The voyage continues to the South Orkney Islands and then enters an enchanted world of icebergs and ice-covered mountains, approaching the bays and channels of the Antarctic Peninsula. This trip takes place aboard the Sea Adventurer, which underwent a $13 million polar conversion in 1998. Her proud reputation is complimented by her well-appointed elegance, and she comfortably supports 122 passengers.

 Priced from £10,850 per person for 17 days including accommodation and most meals. To book visit or call 0845 863 9601.

Tuesday, 23 July 2013

Deals from Voyages of Discovery and Swan Hellenic

Extend that summer feeling by escaping to the Mediterranean this autumn with Voyages of Discovery and Swan Hellenic. With great saver fares currently being offered by both of these cruise brands, there has never been a better time to think ahead to the end of summer.

Embark on a Voyages of Discovery cruise that takes in destinations steeped in the rich history of Christianity with an In the Footsteps of St Paul 13 day cruise, departing on 21 October. Visit sacred destinations in Turkey and Greece, including the renowned archaeological sites of Ancient Ephesus and Ancient Corinth -where St Paul lived and preached - as well as Antalya Museum, regarded one of the most notable archaeology museums in the world.  Prices start from £1,299 per person (saver fare). 

The Voyages of Discovery Adriatic and Aegean Odyssey 13 day cruise, departing on 26 September from Dubrovnik, explores the historical city of Kotor in Montenegro and UNESCO listed Butrint in Albania. Following these ports of call, the cruise then begins a tour around the stunning Greek islands, calling at picturesque islands such as Cephalonia, Mykonos and Santorini. Key destinations on the Greek mainland are also included, such as the awe inspiring Meteora Monasteries in Volos. Prices start from £1299 per person (saver fare). 

Fly from London to the port of Piraeus, Athens, to join the Minerva on the Swan Hellenic Italy and the Dalmatian Coast 14 day cruise, departing on 23 October. Highlights of this cruise, which takes in Greece, Montenegro, Croatia and Italy, include a journey along the Corinth Canal at dusk, a tour of magnificent Venice and a visit to the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Pompeii. Prices start from £1575 per person (saver fare).

Embarking in Naples, the Swan Hellenic Through the Pillars of Hercules 14 day cruise, departing on 5 November, takes passengers on a journey to Sicily, Tunisia, Spain, Madeira and Tenerife. Discover the city of Catania, constructed from Mount Etna lava and cruise south across the Mediterranean to La Goulette, the gateway to Tunis. Following a leisurely couple of days at sea, stop off at Funchal, the capital of Madeira, famed for its beautiful flowers, before the final port of call on the island of Tenerife where you can discover the fertile Orotava Valley, or visit the Teide National Park. Prices start from £1395 per person (saver inside cabin).
Prices for all cruises include return flights to/from the UK (for fly cruises), onboard gratuities, all relevant overseas transfers, meals and entertainment and the Guest Speaker programme on board the ships. Cabin numbers will not be allocated at the time of booking. Prices for Swan Hellenic also include a comprehensive programme of shore excursions worth up to £650 per person and all gratuities both onboard and ashore.

Sunday, 21 July 2013

Boom for Hurtigruten as over-heated Brits head to the Arctic!

Hurtigruten, who offer voyages along the Norwegian coast and into the Arctic Circle, are reporting a 50% rise in bookings made so far in July, compared to the same period last year.
Kathryn Beadle, managing director commented “Maybe it is the images of polar bears and snow-capped mountains that are appealing to people as they sit in sweltering offices, but it is quite ironic that as soon as the weather warmed up, so did bookings to the Arctic. 
She continues “The soaring temperatures in the UK have led to holidaymakers considering a break somewhere cooler this summer, but in particular we have seen a large growth in the number of people booking Northern Lights trips towards the end of the year. My guess is that they are giving their annual beach holiday a miss this year and saving their holiday time for something a little different.”
The company still has some early booking offers available for winter trips to the Northern lights.  
For more information call Hurtigruten on tel: 0844 448 7601 or visit

Saturday, 20 July 2013

Peru & Galapagos Ultimate Wildlife expedition

Epic Wildlife Adventure Includes
Rare Gathering of 1,000 Macaws in Amazon
This Fall with Wild Planet Adventures
 Rare and exotic wildlife viewing specialist Wild Planet Adventures announces a Peru & Galapagos Ultimate Wildlife expedition this fall combining peak coinciding seasonal wildlife events with world-class cultural experiences,” says Josh Cohen, company director.

This wildlife adventure targets a September-October phenomenon in the Peruvian Amazon that brings upwards of 1,000 birds at a time to the world’s largest macaw and parrot clay lick at the Tambopata National Reserve.  “It’s also the peak of the dry season in the Galapagos, which means penguins and sea lions are at their most active, fur seals are mating and Giant tortoises are laying their eggs, said Cohen. “At the same time, there are dramatically fewer tourists at Machu Picchu, and the world’s largest macaw and parrot clay lick in the Amazon is at its peak with five species of macaws and 15 species of parrots and parakeets transforming the clay into a shifting kaleidoscope of pulsing blues, greens, reds and yellows. The fall Galapagos / Peru combination is truly one of nature’s greatest events, and a once-in-a-lifetime wildlife adventure for any lover of wildlife.”

Wild Planet is offering discounts of up to 15 percent off select Galapagos Ultimate Wildlife Cruises when combined with Peru. While the Galapagos is well known as one of the world’s premier wildlife viewing destinations, many people don’t know that the #1 park in the world for biodiversity is Manu Biosphere Reserve in the Peruvian Amazon, with an astounding 200 species of mammals.  The combination of Peru and the Galapagos is the perfect showcase for Wild Planet Adventure’s wildlife expertise, with exclusive activities such as floating silently downriver at dawn to see jaguar on a “Jaguar Kayak Float“ and exclusive excursions to see pygmy marmoset, the worlds smallest –and cutest– primate.

Discounts on 8-day/7-night cruises in the Galapagos on environmentally friendly, first class 20-passenger yachts are available Aug 25-Sept 1, Sept 22-29, Sept 29- Oct 6, Oct 6-13, Oct 13-20, Oct 27-Nov 3, and Nov 3-10 with savings of up to $682 per person, double.  The cruise can be before or after a Peru Ultimate Wildlife 13-Day Adventure that combines the best of Peru: the Sacred Valley, Cusco and Machu Picchu, and up to two Amazonian biosphere reserves, Tambopata and Manu, where Wild Planet’s guests can experience more wildlife sightings than guests of other tour companies because of their exclusive wildlife activities.

About Wild Planet Adventures
The expert wildlife guides of Wild Planet Adventures go the extra mile to explore remote wildlife habitat and study wildlife patterns in destinations not often accessible to the general public. Thanks to the company’s comprehensive itineraries that balance diverse and complex ecosystems and habitats, guests enjoy wildlife and game viewing that is carefully aligned with animals’ seasonal, daily and nocturnal migrations.

Following a philosophy that interacting with nature has the power to transform lives, tours are conducted in Africa, Belize, Borneo, Brazil, Costa Rica, Galapagos, India, Laos, Nepal, Panama, Peru, Thailand and Zambia. Wild Planet Adventures is recognized by top publications in the travel industry for its itineraries that combine intimate encounters with wildlife and local culture.

For a more information and a complimentary 2013 catalog call toll-free 1.800.990.4376, or e-mail: To review current trips, schedules and itineraries log onto:
# # #
Follow Wild Planet Adventures:

Friday, 19 July 2013

Un-Cruise Adventures Explores Four Islands by Yacht on New Hawaii Itinerary

Travelers receive a $700 travel credit per couple on Hawaii cruises

 From November 2013 to April 2014, Un-Cruise Adventures’ 36-guest yacht Safari Explorer explores the Hawaiian islands on a new itinerary sailing one-way between Moloka’i and Hawaii, the Big Island or reverse. Weeklong Luxury Adventure cruises in Hawaii include activities and tours while exploring four islands—Moloka’i, Lana’i, Maui and Hawaii, the Big Island.

New this season, Moloka’i—a quieter, less-visited island—takes center stage as the beginning or ending point for the line’s cruises. Exclusive cultural activities are included for guests on Moloka’i with the vessel spending an evening at dock to allow for a full day of activities and cultural immersion.

“Moloka’i is like stepping back in time to the Hawaii of yesteryear,” said Dan Blanchard, CEO and principal for Un-Cruise Adventures. “It’s incredibly scenic and values its culture and heritage which we’re proud to be able to share with our guests.”

Anakala Pilipo invites guests to Moloka’i’s historic and scenic Halawa Valley for a hike to a secluded waterfall or a relaxing day on his land “talking story,” learning the traditions of his family’s ancient taro patch and a visit to a nearby beach. In the evening, an authentic Pa’ina (feast) at the Moloka’i Museum and Cultural Center features local cuisine including fresh fish, poi, seaweed, Moloka’i sweet potatoes and other staples of the Hawaiian diet. Local musicians join in the celebration along with a kumu hula dancer.

Travelers booked by August 2, 2013 for travel November 2013 through April 2014 receive a US$700 per couple travel credit. Rates for the inclusive weeklong Hawaii cruise start at US$3,595 per person, double occupancy.  Inclusion of premium spirits, fine wines and microbrews, superb hand-crafted meals featuring local Hawaiian flavors, massage, yoga, guided tours geared toward small groups, from-yacht activities and equipment, whale and dolphin encounters, transfers, lei greeting, and port charges and taxes are all wrapped into the cruise fare.  

Highlights of the Hawaiian Seascapes cruise include a night snorkel with Giant Pacific Manta rays and snorkeling at Kealakekua Bay where Captain Cook was slain in 1779. A tour to the Lana’i Culture and Heritage Center introduces guests to the history of the island.  In the Humpback National Marine Sanctuary, expedition cruising allows time for searching out marine life—humpback whales, dolphins, turtles and other marine life. In Kailua-Kona on the Big Island, an afternoon is free to explore the historic town. 

The yacht carries a full complement of water sports equipment for guest use and a swim step provides a convenient and safe launch pad for kayaks and paddle boards, or jumping in for a swim. Guests can be as active as they like and activities include hiking, kayaking, paddle boarding, snorkeling, sailing and skiff excursions.  Expert naturalists provide interpretation on guided excursions ashore and at sea.

An experienced and attentive crew, many from the islands, provides a guest-crew ratio of 2 to 1. Charters and group bookings are available. To book or to request additional information, contact your travel agent or Un-Cruise Adventures at 888-862-8881 or  

Wednesday, 17 July 2013

Cuba Cruise

After recently announcing details on ports of call never before offered by a cruise-line or tour company in a single sailing, Cuba Cruise is excited to reveal their diverse shore excursions highlighting the magic of Cuba.
“We are excited to share Cuba’s vibrant lifestyle, lush biodiversity and varied landscape with our guests,” said Cuba Cruise President Dugald Wells. “From rainforest hikes and historic castle tours to scuba diving with sea turtles, we’ve hand-picked a collection of incredible excursions to suit a range of interests.”
Music in Cuba  

The itinerary and onshore excursions are nothing short of extraordinary. With the help of local guides and experts, Cuba Cruise offers an up-close and in-depth encounter of Cuba never before offered. It’s truly one-of-a-kind.

Families, couples, friends and individuals will have no trouble finding rich experiences to make the most of their Cuban holiday. Excursions on offer can be enlightening, adventurous, historical and cultural – the choice is yours.

Exceptional excursions include:

• Pre & Post Havana and Jamaica stays
• Six UNESCO sites, including the Colonial village of Trinidad
• National Parks, like isolated La Mensura National Park
• Birdwatching
• Diving & Snorkeling
• Hiking
• Cultural/Historical tours
• Guided tour of Havana in classic American automobiles from the 1940’s and 50’s
• Cigar & Rum Factories
• Sugar & Coffee Plantations, including the ruins of French coffee plantations in Santiago de Cuba, a UNESCO site
• Music, Dancing & Nightlife in Cuban hotspots
• Cathedrals & Castles, like the impressive San Carlos De La Cabana Fortress and enjoy a Cannon Shoot Ceremony
• Boating & Catamaran trips
• Jungle & Mangrove tours
• Weddings
• Beautiful white-sand beaches to relax on
  Museum in Havana

Guests can join the 7-night cruise at either Havana or Montego Bay with a lead-in price of only
$586 CAD. Cuba Cruise features Canadian imported cuisine as well as local specialties, and explores diverse ports including Santiago, Cienfuegos, Trinidad and Punta Frances on the Isle of Youth. The 480-stateroom boutique cruise ship Louis Cristal allows access into Cuba’s remote areas.
Many of the sites have never been accessible on a single itinerary without complicated and uncomfortable travel between locations. Cuba Cruise makes it simple, comfortable and a whole lot of fun to see all of Cuba’s most magnificent offerings on one comprehensive trip.
Beaches in Cuba  

For more information on Cuba Cruise’s circumnavigation itinerary, please visit
To make a reservation, call your travel agent or Cuba Cruise at 1-855-364-4999 or visit and book on-line directly.

Tuesday, 16 July 2013

explora And Cruceros Australis Join Forces To Show The Best Of Patagonia


Since launching in 1993, explora has opened the remotest parts of South America to the world. Through constant innovation and as part of their quest to bring the very best of the region to visitors, explora Patagonia has now partnered with Cruceros Australis, a fellow pioneer in the area, to offer extraordinary nine-day trips across the southernmost corners of the planet.

A passion for the remote and in-depth exploration of the region are two values that explora and Cruceros Australis share. Nestled in the shadow of the imposing Paine Massif, explora Patagonia has been a refuge and base for aspirational travellers since its opening; for over 15 years Cruceros Australis has sailed the waters of the Strait of Magellan and the Beagle Channel, introducing travellers to the unspoiled lands of Chilean-Argentinean Patagonia and Tierra del Fuego.

Commenting on the partnership that launches today, explora's CEO, Jesús Parrilla said: "Over the years we have realised that a significant number of travellers visiting South America, as well as tour operators and travel agencies, saw explora and Cruceros Australis as perfect combination offering unique landscape, operational excellence and extraordinary travel experience."

The trips can start from Chile, exploring the peaks, glaciers, lakes and rich flora and fauna of Torres del Paine National Park. They then continue onto Ushuaia, Argentina's southernmost city on Tierra del Fuego and starting point for an unforgettable journey by sea through mythical Cape Horn. Boats then lead passengers onto Wulaia and Ainsworth bays, Tucker Islets, the Alberto de Agostini National Park, home to stunning glaciers, and Magdalena Island located in the Strait of Magellan, home to large colonies of Magellanic penguins. For those who prefer to start the trip by sea, it can also be done in reverse. Parrilla adds; "Our goal here has been to unify itineraries and help travellers maximise their time in the region."

For further information on this once in a lifetime adventure by land and sea, dates and rates, please visit: or call +562 2395 2800.

Monday, 15 July 2013

World’s Best Birding Cruises

AdventureSmith Explorations Recommends
Five Small-Ship Cruises for Amateur Ornithologists

The active travel company securing matches between adventure-seeking clients and a treasure trove of small expedition ships, AdventureSmith Explorations - outlines its top five small ship cruise locations for bird watchers.

“Small ship cruises are able to access remote locations where larger vessels can’t go,  safely and comfortably.  As such they are the perfect platform for bird enthusiasts to view species that may otherwise be difficult to reach,” notes AdventureSmith Explorations director and founder Todd Smith, himself an avid birder.

For best viewing, he suggests, cruise when the birds are most prolific. In Alaska bird watching is best in spring (May 15-June 15) and after Aug. 15 to see migrations. Hundreds of bird species migrate to Alaska’s arctic each summer, crossing over Alaska’s inside passage. Glacier Bay National Park is a hotbed for birders with cute puffins and the rare Kittlitz’s Murrelet.  Glacier Bay Adventure Cruise spends several days inside Glacier Bay and guests can get off the ship.

While guests on any Galapagos Islands Cruise will view many species, bird enthusiasts will appreciate the experts from National Geographic aboard the Endeavour and Islander.  There are 56 native bird species in the Galapagos, with 80 percent found only here.  Thirteen species of Darwin’s Finches are notoriously hard to identify but can be found throughout the archipelago.  Choose an itinerary with Espanola Island during the breeding season of May-November to view the Waved Albatross with its seven-foot wingspan.

Delfin Amazon Cruises brings guests to minimally 100 birds. Colorful Macaws and Toucans get the most attention but serious birders delight in finding local species such as Antbirds and Hoatzin’s during excursions into small tributaries and lakes that increase chances of viewing a variety of species.  Travel during the high water season of December-May for the best chance to see a variety of birds.

Cruising the Antarctic Peninsula reveals many species of penguin, such as Chinstrap, Adelie and Gentoo. For a greater diversity of penguins,  including King penguins, and the chance to witness huge colonies of up to a million birds, select an Antarctic cruise that includes South Georgia and the Falkland Islands.  The Antarctic cruise season is short and penguins mate, nest and rear their young from November to February.  Travel in the early season of November and December to view courtship behavior, nesting and eggs.  January and February are best to view newly hatched chicks and adolescents entering the water. 

Papua New Guinea is one of the most exotic locations for viewing birds aboard a small ship. The diversity of species rivals anywhere on earth and bird watching is combined with authentic cultural interaction and incredible snorkeling.  The region is particularly famous for endemic species such as the Raggiana and Blue Birds of Paradise and rare find including the Fire Maned Bowerbird.  Most trips are scheduled during the dry season in October and November.

Founded in 2003, AdventureSmith Explorations is based in Tahoe City, CA, along the northern shore of Lake Tahoe. In 2012, owner Todd Smith joined the ranks of Conde Nast Traveler's prestigious 13th Annual Travel Specialists List as the world’s expert on small ship expeditions. For information, availability and 2013 reservations Phone: 800-728-2875 toll-free, visit or Email:

Saturday, 13 July 2013

Sanctuary Ananda’s Itineraries in Myamnar

There are eight exciting itineraries available on the luxurious all-suite Sanctuary Ananda in Myanmar.  These itineraries include three, four and seven night ‘Discovery Cruises’  between Bagan and Mandalay as well as a selection of longer and more unusual ‘Exploration Cruises’ allowing guests time to explore the Upper and Lower Ayeyarwady and the shallower Chindwin River. 
Sanctuary Ananda will sail every day on each itinerary and where possible guests will experience local transport to reach off the beaten track villages and must-see sights to ensure a true local and unique experience.
Discovery Itineraries:
Three Nights – Bagan to Mandalay
Setting off from Bagan, this three night experience includes a visit to some of the most important temples and pagodas in Bagan, a horse-drawn cart visit to Ava, the old imperial capital and archaeological site, Sagaing with its convents, pagodas and silversmiths, Amarapura to visit textile workshops and drinks at sunset at the mile-long U Bein bridge.

Four Nights – Mandalay to Bagan
This four night itinerary begins in Mandalay, the cultural capital of Myanmar, and makes its way down to Bagan, the spiritual heart of the country and home to over 2,000 gilded pagodas.  Highlights on the journey include the textile workshops of Amarapura, Sagaing the centre of Myanmar Buddhist faith, Pakokku with its local markets and traditional shoe factories and the Sale monasteries
Seven Nights – Bagan-Mandalay-Bagan
This longer seven night itinerary is a combination of the three and four night itineraries but also offers a train ride across the Gokteik Viaduct to Naung Pein and a visit to Pyin Oo Lwin and its Botanical Gardens. As well as visits to jaggery, lacquerware and brick workshops, the Thone Zu Pagoda with its Nat shrine as well as a hike up Mount Popa, an extinct volcano, to see the stunning summit monastery, pagodas and shrines. 

Exploration Itineraries:
Seven Nights – Mandalay to Pyay
The old imperial city of Pyay (Prome) is the final destination of this seven night itinerary setting off from Mandalay.  Highlights include Ava, Sagaing, the Sale monasteries, the Shwezigon Pagoda in Bagan which houses the Buddha’s bone and tooth and A Magwe from where the hilltop Myat Than Lun Paya can be visited which is built from solid gold bricks.

Ten Nights – Mandalay-Homalin – Bagan
This ten night itinerary sails along the Chindwin River through western Myanmar up to Homalin, just 30 miles from India, showcasing more remote parts that few tourists see, along the route.  Highlights include Maukkdaw, a famous teak port, tiny riverside villages, markets and tea shops, jungle treks and the Mahar Minkyaung Monastery in Mingin where the Shew Sagar Buddha, one of ten carved from a single trunk of wood almost 1,000 years ago, can be seen.
Eleven Nights – Mandalay-Bhamo-Bagan
This eleven-night cruise heads towards Bhamo which is close to the border with China.  The beautiful towns of Amarapura, Bhamo and Katha offer a fantastic insight into Myanmar’s culture and history with stunning gorges below Bhamo to be marvelled at.  Settlements and villages can be visited which have barely changed in the last century such as Mae Dar which can be explored on foot.  The port of Shwegu can be visited from smaller boats and a Shan village provides the opportunity to meet the local people and get an insight into their lives and customs.
Eleven Nights – Mandalay – Yangon
Yangon is the final destination of this eleven-night cruise which includes the Mandalay-Pyay itinerary before it continues down to Yangon.  Along the way, the cruiser sails close to the Akauk Taung caves where hundreds of Buddhas are carved along the river bank.  The beauty of Myanmar can be admired with stunning scenery of pretty villages, paddy fields and distant pagodas.   A visit is made to the Pyi Taw Pyan pagoda in Zalon, which is home to a bronze Buddha stolen by the British Army and returned by order of Queen Victoria. Other highlights on the way include the Minbu mud volcanoes and the Shwedagon Paya pagoda where a Buddha wearing gold sun glasses can be viewed.

To book call 020 7190 7728 visit<> or email<

Friday, 12 July 2013

European Waterways Announce New Bordeaux Cruise

We have introduced a new 6-night itinerary for our hotel barge 'Rosa' which features more of the renowned Bordeaux wine region, including a visit to Saint Emilion, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and tastings of premier cru and grand cru wines - perfect for you wine lovers!  

This new itinerary is only available this year on August 18 (1 passenger currently wait-listed, so 3 cabins available) and August 25 (all 4 cabins available). In 2014, 'Rosa' will cruise this itinerary from August to November. To view this itinerary in full please click here.

Thursday, 11 July 2013

Solar Eclipse Cruises’

Following huge demand for its recently-launched ‘aboard Boudicca (D1504) and Black Watch (W1502), which are now both fully booked, Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines has added a third cruise on board Braemar (M1505), departing from Dover on 11th March 2015.

The new Braemar cruise (M1505) will depart from Dover on 11th March 2015 for 13 nights and will be positioned off the coast of the Faroe Islands on 20th March 2015, when the longest duration of ‘totality’ of 2 minutes 47 seconds – the best opportunity to view the full solar eclipse – occurs. During its voyage, the cruise will also visit Ålesund (Norway), Leknes (Lofoten Islands, Norway), Tromsø (Norway) and Runavik (Faroe Islands), before returning to Dover.

Prices for this ex-UK cruise start from £1,699 per person, based on two adults sharing an inside, twin cabin Grade ‘I’, and include accommodation, all meals and entertainment on board, and port taxes. Guests can also upgrade to Fred. Olsen’s ‘all-inclusive’ drinks package for just £29 per person per night.

Fred. Olsen was recently voted one of the Top 10 holiday providers in a Which? consumer survey

For further information on Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines, visit the website at Book online, call Reservations on 0800 0355 150 (Monday – Friday, 8am – 8pm; Saturday, 9am – 5pm; Sunday, 10am – 4pm), or see an ABTA travel agent.

Tuesday, 9 July 2013

LE SOLÉAL, Compagnie du Ponant’s brand new small vessel

LE SOLÉAL, Compagnie du Ponant’s brand new small vessel, left Venice yesterday morning to embark on her inaugural cruise to Barcelona.

With 132 staterooms and suites, sleek lines, contemporary yet warm designs, this elegant five-star yacht will then sail to the Arctic before heading to Asia. Le Soléal will be the first French-flagged vessel to cruise through the legendary North-West Passage.

+33 4 88 66 64 00
Travel Agents

Monday, 8 July 2013

New Itinerary By Un-Cruise Adventures

New Itinerary By Un-Cruise Adventures Explores Washington State’s
Islands and Shoreline

60-guest Wilderness Adventurer begins new itinerary from Seattle in spring 2014

Beginning spring 2014, active travelers seeking to explore Washington State’s coastal shores from South Hood Canal to Olympic Peninsula and San Juan Islands, may choose a weeklong expedition with Un-Cruise Adventures aboard an expedition vessel.  Weeklong cruises sail roundtrip Seattle, WA and include adventure activities.

The new itinerary, Explore! Olympic Wilderness & San Juan Islands, 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, Washington.  Thirteen departures in 2014 sail from April 5-May 3 and September 13-November 1, 2014.

An Active Adventure, the 60-guest 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.

“The inlets and islands in Puget Sound and the Salish Sea are incredibly scenic and ideal for adventure travelers,” said Dan Blanchard, CEO and principal for Un-Cruise Adventures. “We can hike a mountain trail in the morning, pick up anchor and be kayaking among islands in the afternoon.”

Highlights of the itinerary include hiking in the Olympic Mountains, Mt. Constitution and Washington State Parks. Waterborne expeditions by kayaks, skiffs and paddle boards explore glacial fjords and the San Juan archipelago. In Quilcene Bay, a local family hosts a home-grown oyster and clam tasting. Guests enjoy free time in scenic Friday Harbor and discover Native cultures in Port Townsend.

Travelers spend the week searching out and seeing marine life and seabirds up close. Gray whales, orcas, seals, sea lions, bald eagles and tufted puffins are all found in the area.  A knowledgeable team of expedition guides leads excursions and provides interpretation along the way.

After a full day of adventure, guests may enjoy a soak in the hot tub. Yoga classes take place on deck each morning. The vessel has fitness equipment, a resource/DVD library and massage is available for a fee.  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.  Healthy and hearty meals feature fresh ingredients including locally sourced produce and seafood.

A Washington craft beer theme cruise scheduled for the April 19, 2014 departure features guest experts Kendall Jones and Kim Sharpe Jones, authorities on the Seattle craft beer scene. Guests will enjoy nightly tastings of select craft beer from nearby breweries aboard the vessel, presentations by the Jones’ and beer recommendations matching the evening’s dinner menu.

Rates for the weeklong adventure begin at US$1,595 per person, double occupancy. Charters and group bookings are available. To book or to request additional information, contact your travel agent or Un-Cruise Adventures at 888-862-8881 or