Tag: Cruise Travel

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Five Reasons You Should Suck It Up and Go On a Greek Islands Cruise

Where: Greece
July 8, 2013 at 9:03 AM | by | Comments (0)

We know, we know. The word “cruise” doesn’t always evoke the best images in the minds of travelers. And we totally get it, because the clichéd imagery—overweight, aged travelers sitting around a pool between trips to the buffet—is not exactly unwarranted. Then there are those potentially boring days at sea, the underwhelming onboard nightlife, and the plethora of problems (read: disasters) the industry has seen lately. With that, we acknowledge your skepticism and hesitation when it comes to the idea of cruising.

All that said, allow us to present a silver lining. Turns out, cruising doesn’t have to be that way. There are plenty of ships out there to choose from, ships that focus more on the destinations, carry less passengers and stay late into the night at port (eliminating your reliance upon on-board entertainment).

And it just might make sense for exploring certain parts of the world. We recently sailed on the Azamara Journey on its Greek Islands and Turkey itinerary. Consider us convinced that, when approached appropriately, a cruise can satisfy the needs of young, active travelers, helping them see more places than they could on their own at a price that, while more expensive than backpacking, is not at all unreasonable for what you get.

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Bravo's Summer TV Series Will Be Like 'Upstairs Downstairs' Onboard a Private Yacht

June 28, 2013 at 3:49 PM | by | Comments (0)

It's nearly July and, thus, time for the TV networks to roll out their light and fluffy summer series. Over at Bravo that means a quick slew of episodes following to lives and loves of a suitably good-looking crew onboard a private luxury yacht. Premiering July 1 at 10pm ET/PT, Below Deck is Bravo's attempt at a reality TV show exploring the drama of the upstairs/downstairs world when that world is no larger than a 164' megayacht out to sea.

There's technically six episodes if you count a preview aired on June 10, but the five upcoming shows should be plenty to convince Bravo viewers that dropping six figures for a week in the exclusive yachting world is the only way to have fun. For a dose of the real deal, we recommend following "yachties" "Arielle at Sea" (a nanny onboard a yacht) on Twitter and @hud5on (a superyacht engineer) on Instagram.

Here's the full synopsis and video preview for the show:

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Why Kate Middleton Smashed a $2,000 Bottle of Champagne

June 13, 2013 at 4:45 PM | by | Comments (0)

When you're a royal princess, christening ships is just part of the job. Having the ship (sorta) named after you is also simply an additional perk, as HRH Kate Middleton now knows after smashing a bottle of champagne to christen the newest Princess Cruises ship, the Royal Princess.

Her Royal Highness headed down to Southampton to tour the 141,000-ton, 3,600-passenger ship with Captain Tony Draper, and cut the cord to send the champers sailing into the side, officially welcoming the ship to the open seas. The Royal Princess will only be under the gray sky of England until it departs to begin her inaugural season of 12-night cruises around the Caribbean.

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How to Get Tickets to Sail on the Weezer Cruise

June 4, 2013 at 3:01 PM | by | Comments (0)

If you're one of the few people who are passionate about both Weezer and cruise vacations, you'll be able to combine the two early next year.

Weezer has announced they will embark on a second cruise in 2014 and they're bringing along an impressive line-up of indie bands, including The Cribs, Ash, Palma Violet, Bleached, Caveman, and The Orwells.

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Throwback Thursday: A Travel Blog in 1908

April 11, 2013 at 3:50 PM | by | Comments (0)

Sure, we love all the speed and comfort of modern travel, but it didn't that way overnight. Every Thursday, we're going to take a look back at travel the way it used to be, whether that's decades or centuries ago. This is Throwback Thursday, travel edition.

Millions of travel blogs exist online. Actually the number is more likely in the billions, a staggering amount considering civilization has only had the ability to create weblogs since the early 1990s. Prior to this, travelers sent a steady stream of letters home, or *gasp* wrote entire books of their journeys. These handwritten journals or published, typed tomes often sit forgotten in an attic, in the stacks of suburban libraries, or rotting under heaps of trash sifted away from the jewelry and other hockable bits of estates.

Recently we got our hands on one such book, saved from the last fate as it turned up in an auction, forgotten in the bottom of a box.

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Throwback Thursday: What The Shanghai Bund Looked Like in 1930

Where: Shanghai, China
March 14, 2013 at 6:17 PM | by | Comments (0)

Sure, we love all the speed and comfort of modern travel, but it didn't that way overnight. Every Thursday, we're going to take a look back at travel the way it used to be, whether that's decades or centuries ago. This is Throwback Thursday, travel edition.

When next you're in Shanghai, standing on The Bund and staring out into the Huangpu River with its parade of digital billboard barges and the backdrop of the soaring skyscrapers of Pudong, close your eyes and, for a moment, imagine it all as it was in this postcard from 1930.

For several months at the start of 1930, the Hamburg-American line ship S.S. Resolute sailed an around-the-world itinerary, placing a great focus on Asian ports of call. Instead of placing the responsibility of mailing postcards onto each passenger, the ship offered a service whereby they would mail postcards for you, at each port. The messages were the same, only the neatly typed addresses differed. By the end of the voyage, your friends back home would have amassed a stack of exotic postcards without your having lifted a pen.

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Where to Go with Your Tax Refund: The Eastern Caribbean

March 5, 2013 at 9:27 PM | by | Comment (1)

Tax day is coming, and you're probably excited...but not because you look forward to sifting through receipts and credit card statements. You're excited because you're getting a fat refund. Probably. The economy may be on its way back up, but you should try to stretch that tax refund as far as you can...like with a little "you did a great job last year" trip—a Tax Refund Vacation.

Newsflash. This is actually the best time to take a Caribbean cruise. It's not the holidays (with their premium prices), nor is it hurricane season. A ship is not a Florida beach full of spring breakers, and the temperatures are just right for tanning and swimming without sweating your face off.

Our mind immediately jumps to the newest ship plying the waves, the Celebrity Reflection. We've been on it ourselves and we recently spotted it pulling into St. Maarten, another destination that's definitely tops for a Tax Refund Vacation.

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Cross the Atlantic for the 200th Anniversary of 'Pride & Prejudice'

March 4, 2013 at 5:07 PM | by | Comments (0)

To celebrate the 200th anniversary of Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice, Cunard World Club is offering Austen-themed tours on select Queen Mary 2 Transatlantic Crossings.

The tours include a visit to the Winchester Cathedral with a focus on the Life & Times of Jane Austen, a trip to the Jane Austen Museum and Chawton House Library, and a day trip to Stonehenge and the Salisbury Cathedral, one of the filming locations in 1995's Sense & Sensibility.

Tours start at $850 and take place in July, August, October, and November. To see the full schedule, visit cunard.com.

[Photo: cinemagogue.com]

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Making a Weekend on St. Maarten Happen: How to Get There

February 25, 2013 at 11:38 AM | by | Comments (0)

Wondering when is the right time to jet down for a long weekend on the Caribbean island of St. Maarten? Right now, that's when. We did it and you can too, easily. All this week we'll be sharing the details on making the dream of sunning, sipping cocktails and spotting St. Maarten's notoriously low-flying planes a reality.

First off, you gotta get to St. Maarten. It's an island, by the way, so access options are limited to air and sea. Believe it or not, a nonstop flight from the US east coast to St. Maarten takes just over four hours; that's less than flying coast-to-coast and just a little less than going to Ireland. We know where we'd rather be.

For your reference, here's the Four Ways to Reach St. Maarten:

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Video Interlude: A Time-Lapse Trip on Scandinavia's Ultra Fancy, Duty-Free Ferry

Where: Finland
February 21, 2013 at 1:30 PM | by | Comments (0)

If you think cruise shops are pretty fancy, then you haven't stepped onboard a Scandinavian ferry. Indeed, ferries aren't what they used to be—they're so much better, as musty waiting room-like spaces are being replaced with comfortable lounges, entertainment spaces and even airport-style shopping.

The latter is the highlight of the crossing between Stockholm, Sweden and Turku, Finland onboard the Viking Line ferry M/S Grace. The boat stops in Marihamn, a port town which sits pretty on the Åland Islands between the two Baltic Sea cities. These islands are one of those weird territories travelers love to visit, as they have their own government, flag, stamps and patriotism, but still come under some jurisdiction of another country (Finland, in this case). The draw for the ferries and their duty-free shops is that these boats are exempt from Europe's VAT tax. It's literally a booze cruise—buying it, not so much consuming it.

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Skip the Snorkeling as Cruise Lines Offer Onshore Volunteering

February 20, 2013 at 2:11 PM | by | Comments (0)

Crystal Cruises is once again giving voyagers the chance to do good on the high seas through its "You Care, We Care" program. This year, guests and crew will be able take volunteer excursions around the world while sailing aboard the Crystal Serenity or Crystal Symphony.

Voluntourism opportunities, including aiding animals at the CRAM Rescue & Rehabilitation Center in Barcelona, supporting disadvantaged communities in Dubrovnik, helping underprivileged children in Singapore, keeping landscapes clean in Astoria, Oregon, and feeding the hungry in Halifax, will be available to cruisers all year.

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It May Be a Floating Toxic Mess, but the 'Carnival Triumph' is Still Booking Cruises

February 18, 2013 at 4:06 PM | by | Comments (0)

So after what we can only imagine as a truly horrible, disgusting, and miserable week, the Carnival ship Triumph is back in port. In case you missed it, the ship was busy doing its thing with passengers partying down, but then there was an engine fire which stopped the necessary bits from working. Long story short the bathrooms failed, food was limited, and the boat floated off from its planned course.

Now that it's been towed back to Mobile, Alabama there’s plenty of work to get the ship up and running—and clean—but it looks like they’re ready to start booking some new cruises.

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