Cruising is one of the most popular ways to see the world, and why not? With the joy of comfortable travel, views available from your window, and delightful ports of call along the way, it's the next-best thing to rail travel! These days, there are a dozen and one ways to take to the water - from intimate river barges to bustling ocean liners - and just as many standards of travel to choose from. For those looking for the top end, life on board is simply plain sailing - and if you're not yet convinced, here are our Top 8 thoughts about luxury cruising, that might just tip the sails - um, scales.
1. World-class amenities
Long gone are the days of hardy crossings by sea, with rough conditions and sub-par entertainment. Modern cruising has come a long way since its relatively recent inception in the form we know and love, that came about in the 1960s, and luxury cruising is at the forefront of developments. From on-board swimming pools, cinemas and ballrooms on larger vessels, to fine dining as par for the course (or five of them) on most ships, the world on board is your oyster.
2. Fine dining
We've briefly mentioned this already, but it's worth noting: on board a luxurious cruise, you are sure to be fed heartily and well, with meals often taking influences (and produce) from points of call along your route. This allows you to experience the local cuisines of regions you pass through, without having the risk of a bad restaurant to ruin your night. Bon apetite!
3. Unpack once
Exploring is all good and well - we all love to see the world - but the downside to most multi-centre holidays is the need to constantly pack and unpack as you change destination. The joy of a cruise is the fusion of the excitement new discoveries bring, with the convenience of a central hotel wherever you go. What does this have to do specifically with luxury cruises, you ask? Well, what better incentive to pack your fineries, knowing they can be stored suitably, and not rumpled by repeated packing, than a ship that deserves your best attire?
4. Learn whilst you sail
Many of the best luxury ships don't simply cater to the everyday interests of their passengers, but seek to enlighten them with a splendid array of on-board learning options. From visiting lecturers to relevant language classes, the modern day luxury vessel offers a little something extra to keep passengers both entertained and educated on a fascinating array of topics.
5. All included in the price
The majority of cruises are all inclusive, meaning you have the freedom to just relax and enjoy your comfortable surrounds. Rest assured that all meals are provided, alongside a host of shore excursions, wonderful accommodation, and, often, complimentary drinks. What more could you want from a holiday?
6. Spacious cabins - and perhaps even a balcony
Luxury cruising is all about enjoying the world in the most sumptuous surrounds, so a spacious cabin is an absolute must. With plenty of room, bright, airy cabins are featured on the vast majority of luxury vessels, with similar amenities as you would expect in an upscale hotel, including pillow menus, complimentary Wi-Fi internet access, a good shower and complimentary toiletries. For a little extra, some ships also offer a balcony, for the finest views out over the water, and the peace of an outdoor space all your own to enjoy. Bliss!
7. Good company
It's no secret that cruises often attract those of a certain age, who are often well-travelled and would like to see more of the world at a relaxed pace. This means you're in no short supply of good company on board, and with plenty of guests to mingle with, you'll likely find someone who shares your interests, adding a social element to your adventure.
8. Exclusive experiences
On board a luxury cruise, it's not just the ship that's exceptional - the shore excursions reflect the quality of the vessel, with high-quality, authentic experiences in a variety of shapes and sizes, designed to help you thoroughly appreciate your ports of call. So, whether it's a port wine tasting amidst rolling the vineyards of Portugal, a bike-ride through the villages along the Rhine, or a guided tour and a beer tasting in Cologne, these included excursions offer a unique way to explore new places.