Big Fat Cruise Wrap

It’s our Wednesday cruise wrap, bursting at the seams with cruising goodness, from onboard famils and new voyages to deals and special occasions.

Viking agents cruise the Mediterranean on first ocean group famil

Viking Cruises recently hosted a group of agents and their guests onboard Viking Star to experience the first six days of the 13-day Mediterranean Odyssey ocean cruise from Barcelona to Rome.

During the trip, the group experienced a taster of the popular itinerary with cruise included excursions to Toulon’s Old Quarter a walking tour of Monaco and a visit to the leaning tower of Pisa. Optional excursions were also offered including The Gothic Quarter and Catalonian Cuisine in Barcelona or a Tuscany wine and Merenda tasting in Florence.

Due to high demand the 13-day Mediterranean Odyssey itinerary is now sold out, however Iconic Cities of the Western Mediterranean, 7 nights Barcelona to Rome is available from $3,949 in a Deluxe Veranda. Book before 30 Jun 2017 and save $1,000 per couple.


Glacier Bay in Mountains, Alaska, United States
Glacier Bay in Mountains, Alaska, United States

Boutique cruise line, Windstar Cruises has announced a return to Alaska sailings in its northern Spring/Summer 2018 ports of call also taking in British Columbia.

The news comes on the heels of Windstar’s recent announcement of its return to Asia in 2017/18, with the 212-guest, all-suite Star Legend yacht sailing from Tokyo to Seward (Anchorage), Alaska over a 14-day trans-Pacific cruise, which also stops in Miyako, Hakodate, and Kushiro in Japan.

Windstar’s Alaska beckons guests to slow down over leisurely journeys. With voyages starting at 11 days, there is ample time for scenic cruising in both Canada’s and Alaska’s famed inside passages – where guests can look for orcas, bears, and bald eagles from the comfort of their elegant ship.


Royal Caribbean attend 70s Themed MTA Annual Conference

MTA Annual Conference

Royal Caribbean staff joined almost 400 agents, guests and suppliers at the MTA Annual Conference at the Sheraton Grand Mirage on the Gold Coast last month.

Royal Caribbean was co-sponsor of the 70s themed Gala Dinner on Saturday evening, a highlight from the event, with much fun and many fantastic costumes on show.

Pictured in the attached: From left to right, Peter McCormack, Head of Sales, Royal Caribbean; Don Beattie, General Manager, MTA; Rob Shaw, DSM Queensland, Royal Caribbean; Mick Boylan, Qantas Holidays: Fiona Daven, DSM Queensland, Royal Caribbean.


Cruiseco Share Insights on L’Austral Voyage around Australian Continent


Cruiseco announce the coming launch of the 40 night circumnavigation of our Island Continent, aboard Ponant’s luxurious vessel, L’Austral.  Exclusively designed by Cruiseco and Ponant, the voyage departs Sydney Harbour on 25th January 2018, visiting some of the country’s most breathtaking ports, attractions and scenic highlights.

Highlights of the voyage include exploring:

  • Wineglass Bay (Freycinet), Beauty Point (Tamar Valley) and King Island in Tasmania;
  • Port Campbell (12 Apostles) in Victoria;
  • Kangaroo Island and Port Lincoln in South Australia;
  • Esperance, Albany, Busselton, Fremantle, Geraldton, Turquoise Bay (Ningaloo Reef), overnight in Broome, Talbot Bay (Horizontal Falls) and Wyndham in Western Australia;
  • Darwin and Yirrkala Aboriginal Settlement in the Northern Territory; and
  • Thursday Island, Cape York (the Tip), Lizard Island, Cooktown, Port Douglas, Hamilton Island and Fraser Island in Queensland.

Prices start from AU$27,500* per person, based on twin share in a Superior Stateroom. This offer is available until the 30th April 2017. Fares include: all meals onboard, including 24-hour room service; beverages – house wines, beers, sparkling wine, non-premium spirits; and a specialist expedition crew, including experts in the field of botany, marine biology, history and photography and zodiac tours.


Aqua Expeditions Announce Epic Safari Odyssey 


Aqua Expeditions, have announced a Safari Odyssey being co-hosted in October 2017 by Aqua Expeditions Founder, Francesco Galli-Zugaro and renowned safari guide Howard Saunders, Founder of the Shackleton & Selous Society.

The 14-day adventure for up to 10 guests will journey into the African wilderness, exploring two iconic rivers of the world, the Congo River and the White Nile, travelling through Namibia, Congo and Uganda. Other highlights include Gorilla spotting in the Congo and cycling through Black Rhino country .

This Safari Odyssey is priced at USD13,530 per person, with internal flights approximately ZAR856,000 (approx. AUD16,300 per person).

It includes: Accommodation; all casual meals and  service charges relating to accommodation and meals, alcoholic beverages, bottled mineral water and sodas in camp and on game drives; Park entry, camping and activity fees, all vehicle running expenses and transportation by 4WD safari vehicle with roof hatches; fully trained crew and Professional, Safari Guide exclusively for every vehicle plus daily laundry service, two gorilla tracking permits in Odzala and all flights as described in the itinerary using two Pilatus PC12s.


Cruising To Play a Key Part in Queensland Tourism’s Recovery Post Cyclone Debbie

Carnival Australia Executive Chairman Ann Sherry today pledged that cruising would play a significant part in Queensland’s economic recovery from Cyclone Debbie’s onslaught.

Sherry’s comments followed an inspection of cyclone affected areas of the State with Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk and State Tourism Minister Kate Jones as well as Federal Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment Steven Ciobo.

Her remarks also coincided with the embarkation of 2000 passengers on P&O Cruises’ Pacific Dawn in Brisbane today, with the 70,000-tonne ship set to become the first cruise ship to visit Airlie Beach since the cyclone when it calls at the Whitsundays town on Thursday.

Pacific Dawn’s visit will be the first of three P&O calls to the Whitsunday coast this month. A total of 34 ships from across Carnival Australia’s cruise brands are scheduled to visit the region this year — eight more than in 2016 — while 48 visits are scheduled next year.



Viking Cruises has launched its 2018 river brochure which features destinations across Central Europe, France, Portugal, China and South East Asia, including new itineraries to Ukraine and Egypt.

New in 2018, the Kiev to the Black Sea itinerary takes guests on an 11-day journey to some of Ukraine’s most historic cities, including Zaporozhye, the ancestral home of the Cossacks, and Kherson, which was founded in 1778 by order of Catherine the Great. Priced from $5,395pp.

Taking guests to one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World, the 12 day cruisetour Pathways of the Pharaohs explores Luxor, the Valleys of the Kings and Queens, the Temple of Horus in Edfu and the iconic Nile river. Priced from $6,895pp.

Viking has also recently welcomed two new additions, Viking Hild and Viking Herja, to its fleet of river vessels. Viking Hild will sail the Rhine River from April on Viking’s Paris to the Swiss Alps itinerary, and later this year both new ships will sail Viking’s popular Danube Waltz and Rhine Getaway itineraries.


Carnival Marks National Beer Day with a Toast to ThirstyFrog

Eddie Allen, Jennifer Vandekreeke and Blair Hayden

Carnival Cruise Line has raised a glass to the success of Australia’s first bespoke cruise beer – ThirstyFrog Summer Ale, with almost 200,000 schooners enjoyed at sea since the refreshing craft ale was launched three years ago.

Created in partnership with The Lord Nelson Brewery, ThirstyFrog Summer Ale has proved one of the most popular beers on Australia-based ships Carnival Spirit and Carnival Legend.

Celebrating the three-year milestone at a special event at Sydney’s The Lord Nelson Brewery Hotel on the United States’ National Beer Day (April 7), Carnival Cruise Line Vice President Beverage Operations Eddie Allen said ThirstyFrog Summer Ale had paved the way for the cruise line to work with similar breweries around the world.

ThirstyFrog Summer Ale, which takes its name from the RedFrog pubs featured across Carnival Cruise Line’s fleet, is only available on tap onboard Carnival Spirit and Carnival Legend. The beer is a 100 per cent natural ale, which combines Australian and American hops to create subtle malt flavours and floral citrus aromas in a thoroughly drinkable beer, which was designed to capture the spirit of a holiday at sea.



Regent Seven Seas Cruises takes guests to some of the world’s most exciting and compelling destinations aboard the world’s most-luxurious ships with all-suite, all-balcony accommodation.

Beginning April 1, 2017, Australian and New Zealand travellers can take advantage of a limited-time Book Now Reward offer and receive up to US$500 shipboard credit, per suite, for all new bookings on any unforgettable 2017 Regent Seven Seas Cruises voyage.

With the new Book Now Reward offer, travellers will receive US$500 shipboard credit, per suite, for any new bookings made between April 1 and May 31, 2017 on a 2017 Mediterranean voyage, and US$250 shipboard credit per suite on all other 2017 voyages.


Cruise New Zealand on Celebrity Solstice for less

Celebrity Solstice Docked in Auckland (2)

Sail from Auckland to Sydney over 12 nights on Australia’s favourite^ cruise ship, Celebrity Solstice, and experience the magic of the land of the long white cloud from just AUD$1,699 per person, twin share*. Plus: Oceanview bookings and above receive a free Classic Beverage Package for two, as well as USD$300 onboard credit per stateroom.

Departing Auckland on 9 December 2017, the cruise allows guests to build a North Island land component into their holiday before departing for the 12 night itinerary to Sydney. Calling at the Bay of Islands, Tauranga, Wellington, Akaroa and Dunedin, plus scenic cruising in Dusky, Doubtful and Milford Sounds in New Zealand, the cruise includes a day in Melbourne before arriving in Sydney.

Celebrity Cruises is a premium cruise line known for its modern style of luxury, offering fine wine and dining experiences on modern, stylish ships. Celebrity Solstice, Australia’s highest rated^ cruise ship, boasts a stunning two story, floor-to-ceiling glass wine tower capable of holding 2,800 bottles of wine, 12 sophisticated bars and lounges, as well as ten remarkable dining choices – including Sushi on Five, Tuscan Grille, Murano for fine European fare and Silk Harvest for Asian-fusion dishes.


Ponant offers new itinerary to South Africa

PONANT is offering a new itinerary between must-see cities along South Africa’s east coast. From buzzing metropolises to the pure beauty of the surrounding nature, a land of contrasts is just waiting to be discovered.  South Africa, with its incredible melting pot of cultures, religions and history, boasts a wealth of heritage.

Next departure: March 24 to April 1, 2018



Single travellers tempted by Viking Cruises’ recently-launched 2-for-1 deal on selected 2017 river cruises can avoid paying for two by taking advantage of this great deal.

Itineraries available on this great offer include:

  • Elegant Elbe (Berlin – Prague), May to Oct 2017, from $3,745pp
  • Lyon and Provence (Avignon – Lyon), Jun, Jul, Sept 2017 from $2,645pp
  • Chateaux, Rivers and Wine (Bordeaux – Bordeaux) – Jun – Oct 2017 from $2,395pp
  • Cities of Light (Prague – Paris) – Aug – Nov 2017 from $3,025pp
  • Paris to the Swiss Alps (Paris – Zürich) – Apr, May, Jul – Nov 2017 from $3,245pp

Guests will have the opportunity to visit historic sites such as Checkpoint Charlie, The Brandenburg Gate or the UNESCO World Heritage listed city of Blaye. Guests can also enjoy wine tasting in the regions of Bordeaux and Cadillac, or visit the picturesque cobblestone streets of German towns such as Trier and Mainz.

This offer is available on selected 2017 Viking river cruise departures. Offer valid until 30 June 2017 unless sold out prior. Call 138 747 or visit



Silversea, has revealed details of Silver Muse’s Balsorano Owner’s Suite, a unique space which reflects the taste and Italian tradition of Silversea chairman, Manfredi Lefebvre d’Ovidio.

Named Balsorano, the suite draws inspiration from the chairman’s full name, Manfredi Lefebvre d’Ovidio di Balsorano de Clunieres. Balsorano is also a castle in Italy.

At more than 1000 square feet in size, the Balsorano Suite contains a specially curated selection of Mr Lefebvre’s personal items including books, sculptures, works of art and family photographs. Among the items chosen are a chesterfield chair and ottoman, an additional chair from Mr. Lefebvre’s former family residence in Rome, and photos of Mr. Antonio Lefebvre, Mr. Lefebvre’s father and mentor.

The bookshelf in the Balsorano Suite is adorned with Mr. Lefebvre’s favourite titles, including: The Great Navigators of the Eighteenth Century by Jules Verne; The Great Sea: A Human History of the Mediterranean by David Abulafia; and After the Victorians: The World Our Parents Knew by A.N. Wilson.

The Balsorano Suite will also be stocked with vintage port, each variety having been specially selected by Lefebvre himself.


Avalon Waterways Expands Asian Offering in New 2018 Program

Avalon Waterways has revealed it will boost its presence in Asia next year, introducing a new ship as well as a range of new itineraries in Vietnam and Myanmar.

In a move which will double its capacity in Vietnam, the cruise line will launch the 36-passenger Avalon Saigon in September 2018. The new ship will join sister ship Avalon Siem Reap on the Mekong River, offering weekly departures and a variety of cruises including two new 18 and 21-day sailings.

As well as the two new Mekong itineraries, Avalon is also introducing a new 16-day itinerary on Myanmar’s Irrawaddy River.

The new cruises are included in Avalon Waterways’ new 2018 program which also features an expansion of the cruise line’s popular Active Discovery cruises in Europe to include sailings on the Rhine.

The new eight-day cruises depart alternately from Frankfurt and Amsterdam and feature a variety of engaging excursions, from a hike along Germany’s Rheinstag to a bike tour along the Rhine and a running tour of Amsterdam.

To mark the launch of the 2018 program, Avalon Waterways is offering holiday credit of up to $2600* per couple on a range of departures in Asia and $2400* per couple in Europe.




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