Oh, to sail away from the real-world and forget your problems for a week or two! Whatever your intentions, cruises are versatile vacations perfect for the hardworking business person, the family and kids, newlyweds, or anyone else.
Although once considered a luxury, more and more affordable cruise ship options are springing up all the time, so there’s never been a better opportunity to take the trip of a lifetime! With so many options, you are sure to find the perfect ship and itinerary to fit your group’s needs.
If you are looking for a trip that is off the beaten path this year, here are some excellent choices for unique cruise itineraries.
Five Unique Cruise Itineraries for 2015
Cultural Choice: The Nile
Photo Credit eviljohnius |Source| CC BY 2.0
Obviously there are plenty of things to see in Egypt. Some of the best cities are located along the River Nile, which was necessary to the ancient civilization’s survival, and so are many of the historical sights. One of the best ways to get around between sites is to take a cruise along the river. You’ll see Luxor, the Valley of Kings, temples and tombs, and many points in between. As you float lazily along, you’ll also get a good picture of how the river is still an important part of life in the region.
© 2015 Oberoi Hotels & Resorts
Travel in luxury on the Oberoi Zahra cruise of the Nile—they usually sail twice a month on sophisticated smaller ships that will keep your cruise nice and intimate. They have itineraries for four or eight nights; the latter covers the most ground and will allow you to truly get the full experience of life on this majestic river.
Outdoor Enthusiast’s Choice: Alaska
Cruising Alaska offers you the chance to see wildlife such as bears, eagles, sea lions, and dolphins. You’ll float between immense glaciers while surrounded by impressive mountains. Many towns along the coast have changed little since the gold rush, and you might sometimes feel like you’re the first person to ever explore the area.
Safari Endeavor – © 2015 Un-Cruise® Adventures
Un-Cruise Adventures runs small ships between Ketchikan and Juneau making for a more unique cruise itinerary. If you’re the kind of person who always thought cruises weren’t for you, think again: these smaller ships carry under a hundred people per sailing, so you won’t be knocking kayak paddles with anyone during your shore excursions and will truly be able to connect with nature. Beyond kayaking, you can go trekking and paddle-boarding, and you can even add on a 5-day land package in Denali National Park.
Photographer’s Choice: Scandinavia
Photo Credit Josef F. Stuefer |Source| CC BY 2.0
Taking a cruise along the Scandinavian coastline is a photographer’s dream; honestly, it would be hard to take a bad photo on this trip! Think of it: sweeping coastal vistas, colorful little towns, cities packed with history, plenty of options for your itinerary, and the possibility of seeing the Northern Lights, depending on when you go—make sure you’ve got tons of space on your computer for the photos you’ll be taking!
© 2001-2015 Seabourn Cruise Line Limited
One of the more unique cruise itineraries in this region is Seabourn Quest 21-day cruise that will take you from Stockholm, out to the Norwegian Sea, passing by picturesque villages and fjords in Finland, Russia, and Norway. If you don’t have three weeks to spend, you can take an abbreviated 7-day cruise of the Baltic Sea stopping at Stockholm, Russia, and Denmark or a 14-day cruise of just Scandinavia’s coastline, without heading all the way over to St. Petersburg. Ships have a maximum capacity of about 500 people, so you’ll have plenty of elbow-room when you’re taking photos.
Beach Lover’s Choice: The Mediterranean
Photo Credit Jeff Warder|Source| CC BY 2.0
A Mediterranean cruise is a classic and fun trip. You’ve got plenty of options here, from Italy to Greece to Turkey—but wherever you end up, you’ll get the chance to explore fascinating towns and cities when you go ashore, plus hang out on beautiful beaches and get a nice tan. Your itinerary is guaranteed to give you a nice mix of culture, relaxation, and photo ops that will make all your friends wish they were there.
Take a cruise aboard Royal Caribbean’s Allure of the Seas. As the largest cruise ship in the world, you’ll find there are options for everyone, whether you fancy sunbathing or ice skating. This eight-day cruise will take you around to some of Europe’s most popular cities, including Barcelona, Marseilles, and Rome. If city life isn’t your thing, there are plenty of shore excursions to occupy your time as well. Be sure to book early, though, as these cruises often sell out!
Explorer’s Choice: Australia and Africa
If you are looking for the most unusual cruise itinerary, you might want to look into a cruise from Australia to South Africa. Remember that ships used to travel down around the Cape of Africa to get to Australia and the Pacific, so you’re traveling a very historical route packed with plenty of cultural sights. Most cruises will offer you a choice of interesting shore excursions that will show you unique sights. Not only that, but there are some beautiful beaches along the route!
© 2015 Cunard Line
Cunard’s Queen Elizabeth ship does the route in 22 days, beginning in Cape Town and ending in Melbourne. They offer a ton of excursions so that you can really learn the most about the culture of both countries—for example, try the Kirstenbosch & Wine outing to learn about South African wine, the Kariega Game Reserve trip to see some big cats, the Long Beach Getaway for a relaxing beach trip in Mauritius, or the Arcades and Alleyways tour of Melbourne.
More Cruise Options
Of course, there are plenty of other options for unique cruise itineraries-figure out your interests and decide what’s best for you. Or if you’re really ambitious, string them all together and circumnavigate the globe! You’re in for the trip of a lifetime, so get ready to upload your amazing photos on Instagram.
One tip I always like to share about traveling is to use a VPN service on your phone or tablet. Many websites, like Instagram and Skype, are not available worldwide. Also, anytime you are accessing public Wi-Fi, you are leaving your information vulnerable to attack. A VPN will encrypt your connection, protecting your information, and also allow you to access your favorite sites.
Now, just grab the sunscreen, and get ready for a fun, exciting trip!
Have you taken one of the cruises mentioned above? Are there other unique cruise itineraries you recommend veteran cruisers try for their next trip? Drop us an anchor below to share your most unique and exciting cruise itineraries with fellow travelers.