July 2021

The return of epic sails


July 2021

In this Issue


The July 2021 cover of Cruise Adviser, featuring the city lights of Singapore – a key destination on a number of epic cruises

In this issue

Find out what's in the latest issue of Cruise Adviser

Promotion: Riviera Travel
Editor’s letter

Plus, how to get in touch with the team

News: Cruise returns to the UK and Europe

Plus, AmaWaterways to sail Magdalena river in Colombia

News: New Red Sea cruises for MSC and Scenic

Plus, Cunard reveals Overseas Escapes

Seven European cruises to look forward to in 2022

Paid partnership: It may sound like a cliche, but Riviera Travel really does have a cruise for everyone.

News: Hurtigtruten to sail to the Galápagos Islands

Plus, Silver Wind converted into icebreaker

Agent incentives

Encourage a travel agent friend to sign-up to Cruise Adviser and we’ll enter you in a prize draw to win a £50 Amazon voucher

News: When do cruises restart?

Details of cruise line restarts, along with each line’s current regulations regarding vaccination, Covid-19 testing and the wearing of face masks

Quark Expeditions redefines polar helicopter adventure

Paid partnership: Long recognised as the global leader in polar adventures, it has now upped its game by becoming the global leader in heli-adventures

Cruises for those who love Greek islands

In the first of a new series, we round up five of the best cruise lines operating cruises to the Greek islands

Bigger, better, lasting longer

As demand for longer holidays increases, epic cruises of 20 nights or more are an ideal option for people who are keen to make up for lost time. Janine Kelso looks at some of the best

I’m a Celebrity... get me back out here!

Jane Archer joins Celebrity Cruises on their first Seacation from Southampton on board Celebrity Silhouette, and finds that Covid protocols do not adversely affect the cruise experience

How to Sell: Wellness cruises

Each issue, cruise expert Jane Archer shares her tips on selling a specific area of cruise. This time, she looks at wellness

Trade support directory

The vital contact details for all major cruise lines operating in the UK

Promotion: Riviera Travel

Editor’s letter

Sailing back to normality

Hello and welcome to the latest issue of Cruise Adviser. It’s been another important month on the road back to some sort of normality.

The Department for Transport has confirmed that it will allow cruise lines operating coastal cruises to operate at 50 per cent capacity – regardless of the total number of guests – upping it from a maximum of 1,000. The condition is that all guests must be double-vaccinated, prompting MSC Cruises to change its vaccination policy.

The Mediterranean line was the first to return, just as it was in 2020. It has since been joined by Viking and, more recently, P&O, Celebrity, Fred Olsen and Royal Caribbean. We continue to bring you all the latest news to help you keep track of this quickly changing landscape.

Our job isn’t just to provide news, but also to inspire you – and by extension your customers by reminding them what an incredible holiday cruise is. This month, we take a look at epic cruises – those from 20 to 100-plus nights – that take in destinations such as Singapore, French Polynesia and Australia.

Elsewhere, Jane Archer joins the newly refitted Celebrity Silhouette on a UK sailing, plus she also examines the best wellness options at sea in her How to Sell column – plus there’s plenty more. We hope you enjoy reading.


Get in touch

Cruise Adviser is the leading cruise publication for the travel trade. The award-winning magazine contains insightful comment, features, news and advice for those looking to sell cruise holidays. Uniquely aimed at frontline travel agents, two thirds of readers say the magazine has helped them make a sale.

Cruise Adviser is published monthly, and is out on the second Wednesday of the month

To view our 2021 media kit and forward features list, please click hereCruise Adviser is created by Waterfront Publishing. See for more details.


Anthony Pearce, director

Design: The Studio
Sub-editing: Nathaniel Cramp

Advertising and partnerships
Sam Ballard, director

Bryan Johnson, senior sales manger
020 3865 9338
07532 709 734

Cruise Adviser
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020 3865 9360


Cruise returns to the UK and Europe

Royal Caribbean is the latest line to resume operations with cruises around the Greek islands and UK coast

Royal Caribbean returned to Europe earlier this month, when Jewel of the Seas embarked on a two-night preview sailing from Limassol on July 6, ahead of its inaugural cruise on July 10, to ports including Athens, Rhodes, Crete, Mykonos and Santorini, Greece.

The cruise marked the beginning of a short summer series of seven-night itineraries to the Greek Islands for Royal Caribbean, and was also the first time the line has based a ship in Cyprus.

It’s been more than a year since Royal Caribbean have operated in Europe due to the pandemic, with Jewel being joined by Anthem of the Seas which is now sailing from Southampton on UK coastal cruises. Further ships will be added throughout August, including Harmony of the Seas, which departs from Barcelona on August 15. 

All crew and passengers on Jewel aged over 18 will be fully vaccinated. Families are still welcome aboard the sailing, with non-vaccinated passengers between 12 and 18 completing a negative PCR test within 72 hours of arrival in Cyprus. All passengers above the age of two will also have to take a compulsory complimentary test on the day of embarking. The measures are specific to the sailing from Cyprus in compliance with the Cypriot government and will be continuously evaluated. 

Multiple cruise lines have now restarted, with P&O, Celebrity, Crystal, Seabourn and Fred Olsen following Viking, MSC and Saga

The return to sailing in the UK and Europe follows a recent change in policy, stating that cruise liners can carry more people if all guests have been fully vaccinated and there was at least 14 days between their second dose and departure. The policy allows ships to sail at 50 per cent capacity, regardless of the total number of guests, if all on board have been double-vaccinated.

Ben Bouldin, EMEA vice president for Royal Caribbean, said: “Jewel of the Seas’ first sailing out of Cyprus marks the beginning of an exciting return to cruising in Europe for Royal Caribbean.

“Cyprus is a beautiful country with a multitude of must-visit regions, and it is an extremely popular destination among our European guests – we know they are ready and waiting to enjoy a Cyprus and Greek Isles getaway this summer.”


AmaWaterways to sail Magdalena river in Colombia

The river cruise line announces a new partnership with South American operator Metropolitan Touring

AmaWaterways will sail the Magdalena river in Colombia after announcing a partnership with Metropolitan Touring, a South American tour operator.

From December 2023, guests will be able to explore the river on a custom-built, all-suite, eco-friendly river cruise ship, the line said.

“Not since my early university days of exploring the Amazon river have I felt the excitement of discovering a new destination that is so rich in biodiversity and culture as I found on the Magdalena river,” said Rudi Schreiner, president and co-founder of AmaWaterways. “I’m absolutely captivated by the rich history, wildlife and friendly welcome that awaits our guests when our intimate, all-suite ship sets sail in December 2023.”

“Colombia has always been a country close to my heart and every trip I’ve made to the Magdalena over many years has been full of amazing, life-affirming experiences that touched my soul. Finding the right partner to develop the first-ever eco-friendly river cruise experience for Colombia was therefore of utmost importance to me and our company,” said Paulina Burbano de Lara, chief executive officer of Metropolitan Touring. “We know that Rudi, Kristin [Karst] and all the AmaWaterways team share our passion for the river Magdalena and we’re delighted that together we will create innovative and enriching experiences for guests.”

Guests will be able to choose between two seven-night itineraries with pre- and post-cruise land programmes exploring the Magdalena river and wider Colombia.

“Drawing on each company’s expertise, AmaWaterways and Metropolitan Touring have together created a unique river cruise and land programme that will immerse travellers in the beauty of the ‘River of a Thousand Rhythms’,” said Camilo Calderon, general manager of Metropolitan Touring Colombia. “Our guests will enjoy the modern comforts of an upscale river cruise ship, with exclusive experiences and unparalleled service, hallmarks of both companies, to the very heart of Colombia’s soul.”

“It is incredibly exciting to be able to launch a new river cruise destination like Colombia, with such a colourful history and artistic background,” said Kristin Karst, executive vice president and co-founder of AmaWaterways. “We are celebrating 19 years of creating authentic river cruise experiences in Europe, Asia and Africa and now, with our world-recognised destination partner, Metropolitan Touring, we will be able to offer our guests an opportunity to explore a fourth continent while discovering the hidden gems of Colombia along the majestic Magdalena river.”

Specific itineraries are currently being developed with more details due in the coming weeks.


New Red Sea cruises for MSC and Scenic

The two lines are starting cruises from Saudi Arabia, which is set to become a top tourist destination

MSC Cruises and the Scenic Group are both adding Red Sea sailings to their programmes this summer.

The Scenic Group is set to bring Scenic Eclipse to the Red Sea for the first time this month.

The line’s first purpose-built ocean cruise ship – equipped with an onboard submarine and two helicopters – will sail Saudi waters from July 17 to December 9.

Glen Moroney, founder and chairman of the Scenic Group, said: “Saudi Arabia will be one of the hottest tourist destinations in coming years and we’re very glad our guests will get to experience it in six-star comfort on Scenic Eclipse.”

The luxury liner will homeport in Jeddah and will offer tailor-made itineraries, as well as pre-planned itineraries.

Highlights include popular diving spot Yanbu, which features the Iona wreck, a British merchant steamer sunk in 1915 which can be explored by diving, snorkelling or submarine.

MSC Cruises’ vessel MSC Bellissima has added 21 voyages from Jeddah to its Red Sea programme between late July and November.

The ship will offer three- and four-night cruises to Safaga, Egypt, or Aqaba, Jordan.

Pierfrancesco Vago, MSC Cruises’ executive chairman, said: “As the tourism industry of Saudi Arabia grows progressively for its own residents and international visitors, we at MSC Cruises are looking forward to making a positive and lasting contribution as more people explore and discover the rich heritage and incredible cultural attractions it has to offer.

“In the Red Sea we are committed to serve holidaymakers with the very best cruise experiences. This, we believe, will accelerate the attractiveness of holidays at sea in the region and significantly help in the growth of tourism.”


Cunard reveals Overseas Escapes

Voyages announced on Queen Mary 2, Queen Victoria and Queen Elizabeth

Cunard has announced over 40 new voyages across its fleet in 2021 and 2022.

The Overseas Escapes will range from two to 40-night sailings, visiting more than 49 destinations on board flagship Queen Mary 2, Queen Victoria and Queen Elizabeth.

Queen Mary 2 will resume transatlantic crossings in November, 2021 before sailing new short breaks in Western Europe followed by three winter sailings to the Caribbean.

Queen Victoria will mark its return to sailing in April, 2022 with three new round-trip itineraries from Southampton, visiting 11 countries, treating guests to time ashore in destinations such as Copenhagen, Helsinki, Tallinn and Gdynia, together with overnight calls in Amsterdam, Lisbon and St Petersburg.

Following its summer exploring Britain’s coastline, Queen Elizabeth will depart on a series of new sailings from Southampton to Western Europe followed by the Iberian Coast and the Atlantic Islands.

Cunard president Simon Palethorpe said: “We are delighted to announce these new voyages which will mark the full fleet’s return to sailing. Our guests have patiently waited to sail on their favourite Cunard Queen and our 2021 and 2022 itineraries offer a variety of exciting holidays to suit all combined with the impeccable White Star Service on board that makes a Cunard voyage so memorable.

“And for an additional reason to book, guests can take advantage of complimentary upgrade to a Balcony stateroom when they book an Inside or Outside stateroom on selected voyages.”

The line was recently forced to delay its UK restart date following an outbreak of Covid-19 among a “small number” of its crew.

Queen Elizabeth was due to depart Southampton on July 19 to sail to Cornwall.

Paid partnership

Seven European cruises to look forward to in 2022

From the shores of the British Isles to the Croatian coast, Morocco and more – Riviera Travel will take you there

It may sound like a cliché, but Riviera Travel really does have a cruise for everyone. Outstanding hand-crafted itineraries, authentic experiences with knowledgeable local experts and honest pricing have kept passengers coming back for 37 years. With a focus on quality not quantity, and with all cruises outside the UK including flights or Eurostar and transfers, every detail is thoughtfully planned so guests can relax and explore at their own pace.

Cruise the Danube and stay on in Prague
Gliding along the serene river Danube, this 11-day holiday includes seven nights onboard and three nights exploring Prague, the ‘city of a hundred spires’, staying in a centrally-located hotel. Includes 10 visits and guided tours in Vienna, Salzburg or Linz, Dürnstein, Budapest and Bratislava, plus Esztergom Basilica and Melk Abbey. See more here.

Live the high life on a yacht cruise
Does your idea of holiday heaven start with a coffee and croissant on a pristine sun deck, followed by a dip in crystal-clear water and a visit to a local market? Then a Croatian yacht cruise should be on your list. With just 40 guests and a four guest to one crew ratio, you’ll stop off at historic cities and stunning islands while taking in the captivating coastline. See more here.

Set sail on a classic tall ship
Looking for a traditional sailing experience? Tall ship cruises on the 222-passenger Royal Clipper combine maritime traditions of the past with contemporary creature comforts. Being at sea on a tall ship is the ultimate romantic experience, with billowing sails whisking you to your destination. This authentic voyage will bring you closer to the ocean, while exploring some of the most beautiful ports along the Mediterranean coastline. See more here.

Discover the best of the British Isles – new for 2022
Boasting a stunning itinerary, this cruise includes 10 nights on the 190-passenger World Voyager. Sailing from Portsmouth to Scottish and Irish cities, you’ll tour ancient castles and striking coastline – you’ll also visit charming port towns and hear tales of years gone by. The cruise concludes with a stop in the Scilly Isles, where your guide will take you on a fascinating walk. See more here.

Experience north Europe’s historic waterways
Like the sound of medieval towns, striking architecture and diverse culture? Then you’ll love this eight-day cruise from Amsterdam to vibrant Cologne. Your five-star ship with its homely accommodation will transport you to Rotterdam and Kinderdijk, Bruges and Ghent, Antwerp and Arnhem. You’ll also enjoy eight visits and tours, including a trip to Floriade Expo, Europe’s only recurring horticultural expo, which only takes place every 10 years. See more here.

Cruising Atlantic Europe – new for 2022
Sailing from British soil, this 11-day cruise on the intimate World Voyager takes in Guernsey’s golden coast, the verdant winelands of Bordeaux, Spain’s Basque Country and the vibrant Portuguese cities of Porto and Lisbon. With daily visits and tours, you’ll travel deeper in these destinations, exploring manor houses and gardens and visiting medieval palaces – there’s also optional wine and port tastings in Bordeaux and Porto. See more here.

Uncover the gems of Morocco, Madeira and the Canaries – new for 2022
Want to discover superb architecture, remote mountain villages and other-worldly landscapes? This sun-soaked 10-night World Voyager cruise features guided sightseeing tours of Casablanca, Funchal, the south of Gran Canaria and La Gomera. Accompanied by expert tour guides, you’ll enjoy the Madeiran culture and sample its local wine and explore the volcanic terrain of La Gomera. This voyage really is one not to miss. See more here.



Hurtigtruten to sail to the Galápagos Islands

The line will offer nine-day expedition adventures to the archipelago from January 2022

Hurtigruten Expeditions is adding the Galápagos Islands to its global offering from January 2022 in what is being described as a “significant milestone” for the cruise line.

Sailings to the archipelago will take place on board the newly upgraded, 90-guest MS Santa Cruz II, adding to Hurtigruten Expeditions’ growing fleet of small purpose-built expedition cruise ships.

Starting from January 5, 2022, Hurtigruten Expeditions will offer nine-day Galápagos adventures, including two nights in the Ecuadorian capital of Quito before a six-night cruise.

It is also possible to add a four-day tour of Machu Picchu in neighbouring Peru, before embarking on the Galápagos adventure.

“We are extremely excited to expand our South America offering to one of the most spectacular destinations on the planet,” said Hurtigruten Group CEO Daniel Skjeldam.

He added: “We have seen a clear trend of travellers seeking out truly unique and meaningful travel experiences, with a sharp increase in demand for the type of small ships and big experiences we offer. The pandemic has dramatically pushed this development forward. There is huge pent-up demand for travelling right now, and we are responding with this breathtaking new destination.”

Home to 9,000 species of wildlife, the Galápagos Islands are an isolated archipelago located almost 1,000km off the coast of Ecuador.

Hurtigruten Expeditions has teamed up with Ecuador-based Metropolitan Touring to offer guests unique experiences with the islands’ wildlife.

Cruise highlights include exploring the Giant Tortoise breeding centre, getting up-close with sea lions and land iguanas, bird watching, kayaking, and snorkelling, as well as daily lectures to better understand the islands and their wildlife.

MS Santa Cruz II will feature all suites and cabins, an explorer lounge, a dining room, a bar and a Science Area.

Hurtigruten Expeditions CEO Asta Lassesen said: “This is a significant milestone in our 125-year history of exploring. the Galápagos is one of the world’s ultimate expedition cruise destinations.”


Silver Wind converted into icebreaker

The ship is being modified to allow it to cruise in polar waters, and it heads to Antartica later this year

Silversea Cruises is set to convert Silver Wind to an ice-class, ultra-luxury expedition ship.

The ship is currently undergoing refurbishments at the Remontowa shipyard in Gdańsk, Poland, following a major upgrade in 2018.

The redesign includes an ice-strengthened hull for cruising in polar waters and state-of-the-art technology upgrades. Silver Wind will be outfitted with a new advanced wastewater treatment plant, food waste treatment facilities and new fuel-saving boilers, the line said.

It will become the fourth expedition vessel in Silversea’s fleet of nine ultra-luxury ships. Its maiden voyage will be on November 20 – a 22-day journey to Antarctica, coinciding with a solar eclipse on December 4.

“We are converting our beloved Silver Wind into one of the most luxurious expedition ships at sea to further expand and diversify our cold-water cruise offering,” says Roberto Martinoli, Silversea’s president and CEO. “With the backing of the Royal Caribbean Group, we are significantly investing in our ultra-luxury fleet to meet the burgeoning guest demand for voyage options in such breathtaking remote destinations as Antarctica, and we have more exciting enhancements to come.”

The ship will be fitted with a strengthened hull; ice-detector sonars, designed for use on icebreaker vessels; 24 Zodiacs; and 14 kayaks. With a reduced guest capacity of just 274, Silver Wind will carry up to 28 expedition experts who will share their knowledge during onboard lectures, on guided Zodiac tours, and on experiences on land. A photo studio (formerly the casino), a mudroom and a special water heating system in the ship’s swimming pool will also be included.

Silver Wind’s Vista and Veranda suites will also be updated, including the installation of new walk-in showers. Many of the ship’s public areas will also be refreshed, with repainted walls and ceilings in La Dame, La Terrazza, the Observation Lounge, the Panorama Lounge, and the reception area. The gym and beauty salon will be refreshed too.


Offers from Newmarket Holidays, Celestyal, Titan Travel and more

Encourage a travel agent friend to sign up to Cruise Adviser and we’ll enter you in a prize draw to win a £50 Amazon voucher. Make sure they enter your details when asked for a reference name. Subscribe here

Newmarket Holidays is offering agents an incentive of £20 per booking, applicable against all 2021/2022 bookings made between July 1 and August 31. Furthermore, agents who make bookings will be entered into a prize draw to win a free place on an A-Rosa fam trip in 2022. 

Celestyal Cruises is offering the chance for one travel agent to win a place on a three-night fam trip around the Greek Islands. The three-night Aegan voyage departs on October 8, 2021 from Lavrion, Athens before calling at Mykonos, Kusadasi, Patmos, Heraklion and Santorini, staying in a single cabin, with all meals and drinks, two excursions, port taxes and gratuities included, excluding flights. 

Titan Travel has launched a trade exclusive ‘double bubble’ river incentive, doubling its river cruise booking incentives from £10 to £20 for each new booking throughout July and August 2021. Agents can claim a £20 lifestyle voucher for each new river cruise booking made during the period, while the existing £10 lifestyle voucher incentive will remain in place for all other bookings.


Sign up to Shipshape

Sign up to Shipshape – our revamped weekly newsletter, bringing you the latest cruise news, advice and incentives.

We’ll be bringing you news of short and medium-term developments – for now, mostly coastal sailings in the UK and scheduled European sailings for later in summer – as well as plans for 2022 and beyond.

We’ll be sharing selling tips – from our expert cruise writers and the cruise lines themselves – as well inspiring features about destinations and new ships. And we’ll be rounding up all the latest incentives, plus news of fam trips.

Sign up here.



When do cruises restart?

Details of cruise line restarts are below, along with each line’s current regulations regarding vaccination, Covid-19 testing and the wearing of face masks. This information is updated regularly; you can find all the latest cruise news here.


A-Rosa River Cruises restarted cruises on the Rhine and Danube in June, and hopes to follow on the Douro from July 21 and the Rhône from August 21. However, it is unlikely that river cruises on the Seine will take place during the entire 2021 season.

Jörg Eichler, managing director of A-Rosa, said: “It is really encouraging that tourism in Europe finally looks like it can return soon. We are busy adapting and updating our current protocols in line with the latest regulations in the countries we sail through.”

Regulations: Social distancing and one-way systems will be in place and all crew members and guests must wear a full mouth and nose cover in public areas. Guests will be sent a declaration of fitness to travel and the rules of conducts onboard. These must be signed and handed over on arrival at the ship. In addition, guests must carry out a ‘self-check’ for symptoms and not travel if any of the results are positive. More information here.


AmaWaterways is planning to restart cruises this month. Details are as follows:

  • July 3AmaDouro will restart sailings through Portugal 
  • July 21AmaMagna on the Danube 
  • July 22, AmaKristina  on the Rhône and AmaLyra on the Seine 
  • July 27, AmaVida in Portugal and Spain
  • July 29, AmaDolce in Bordeaux, France 
  • July 29, AmaSiena on the Rhine 

AmaWaterways’ executive vice president and co-founder Kristin Karst said: “We are so excited to see the situation in Europe evolving in a positive direction. We are proud to announce a selection of sailings starting the first week of July in Portugal with other restart dates throughout July on select ships on all the European rivers including the most luxurious ship on the Danube, the AmaMagna, on July 21.

“On a personal note, being born in Germany, I could not be happier about the announcement that Europe will be opened this summer to safely welcome back tourists to assist with the much needed economic and social recovery.”

Regulations: There will be limits on the number of guests to facilitate social distancing and guests are required to wear face coverings when moving through public spaces. Prior to boarding, an online health and contact screening questionnaire will be required and at embarkation, guests’ temperatures will be taken with no-contact infrared thermometers. More information here.

APT Touring

APT Touring is hoping to resume tours and cruises this summer.

In the meantime, the company is offering 100 per cent future holiday credit (FHC) valid on any of their brands up to December 31, 2023.

Regulations: APT has adopted the Cruise Lines International Association (Clia) recommendations and actioned increased health screenings and protocols for all cruises, both on board and prior to boarding, for all passengers and crew. More information here.

Avalon Waterways

Avalon Waterways is hoping to restart its European river cruises from July 27.

It says: “All 2021 travel bookings automatically come with our Peace of Mind Travel Plan – free of charge. This plan gives guests the ability to move their booking to another destination, vacation, brand or simply a different 2021 or 2022 departure date, no questions asked. For as long as the Covid-19 pandemic is still affecting, travel, all bookings for 2022 travel dates are also covered by the Peace of Mind Travel Plan, extending the ability to move travel dates to 2023.”

Regulations: Reduced ship capacity and social distancing guidelines, plus mandatory health screening, including touch-free temperature-check, for all guests and crew at embarkation. More information here.


Azamara is due to begin sailing from August 28 from Greece on Azamara Quest.

Regulations: The line says it’s collaborating with government health authorities and Clia to develop its boarding screening process and updated health protocols, which are not yet finalised. More information here.

Carnival Cruise Line

Carnival Cruise Line is restarting cruises in North America from July 1, with some exceptions.

Carnival Mardi Gras will resume sailing from July 3.

Carnival Legend’s European itineraries have been cancelled.

Carnival Miracle’s seasonal service from San Diego has been suspended until further notice, and sailings out of San Diego to Hawaii will move to Long Beach.

Carnival Liberty sailings from Port Canaveral between September 17 and October 18 are cancelled for drydock work.

Carnival Sunshine sailings from Charleston between October 11 and November 13 are cancelled for drydock work.

Carnival Magic, Carnival Paradise, Carnival Valor, Carnival Legend and Carnival Radiance are due to return to service in November.

Australia voyages aboard Carnival Splendor restart on June 28, Carnival Spiriton September 12.

Regulations: the line hasn’t issued any specific guidance as yet, beyond the standard CDC advisory information.

Celebrity Cruises

Celebrity Cruises resumed sailings on Celebrity Millennium from St Maarten on June 5.

This was followed by Celebrity Apex resuming operations from Athens on June 19 and Celebrity Silhouette from Southampton on July 3.

Regulations: All guests and crew above the age of 18 must vaccinated against Covid-19. Those under the age of 18 must have a negative PCR test result within 72 hours of embarkation. More information here.

Celestyal Cruises

Celestyal Cruises resumed operations on June 12 with Celestyal Crystal, followed by Celestyal Olympica on June 30.

Regulations: All guests will have to provide proof of vaccination, or a negative PCR test within 72 hours of embarkation. There will be thermal screening at embarkation and daily contactless monitoring throughout the vessel. More information here.


CroisiEurope restarted operations on the Douro on June 7; the Gironde and Seine followed on June 30; the Rhine on July 2; the Rhône on July 3; the Elbe, Oder, Havel, the Baltic and the Danube on July 8; the Guadalquivir on August 19 and the Po on August 25.

It restarted French canal cruises on July 2, and ocean cruises from June 10 in Croatia and July 4 in Corsica.

Until August 31, all cruises qualify for CroisiEurope’s relaxed booking conditions, which include a full refund should the cruise be cancelled by CroisiEurope and moving a booking free of charge to any other departure in 2021 or 2022 more than 30 days prior to departure.

Regulations: Guests will need to provide proof of vaccination or a negative PCR or rapid antigen test prior to embarkation. More information here.


Crystal resumed sailings with the majority of its ocean fleet this summer, beginning with Crystal Serenity from the Bahamas on July 3 and Crystal Endeavor from Iceland on July 17.

Crystal Esprit’s return has now been delayed until September 27.

Crystal River Cruises will resume from August 29.

Regulations: All guests will be required to be fully vaccinated against Covid-19 and a mandatory test with negative results will be required prior to departure. Guests will also have their temperature checked both prior to boarding ship or venturing ashore and Crystal operates what it calls a “responsive mask policy”. More information here.


Cunard is to resume sailing with a series of Staycation voyages from Southampton on Queen Elizabeth from August 13. Queen Victoria and Queen Mary 2 are due to resume operations on August 28 and November 13 respectively.

It says: “With international travel not yet fully opened up, we’re delighted to offer these voyages exclusively for British guests to experience a staycation unlike any other, as they relax in Cunard luxury knowing we will take care of everything. Guests can sail along some of the most stunning coastlines anywhere in the world, as Queen Elizabeth provides a unique vantage point, or sail on one of our Sun Voyages where the destination is unscripted and is guided by studying the weather forecast and heading to where the sun shines brightest.”

Regulations: The Staycation sailings will be for UK resident Covid-19 vaccinated guests only. There will also be enhanced sanitation measures, appropriate social distancing and the mandatory wearing of face masks in certain areas. More information here.

Disney Cruise Line

Disney Cruise Line resumes sailing this summer with Disney Magic at Sea – a series of two, three and four-night cruises on Disney Magic from Liverpool, Southampton, Newcastle and London Tilbury, beginning on July 15.

Disney Dream, Disney Fantasy and Disney Wonder sailings from the US will resume from August 6, with Disney Magic returning to regular service from November 4.

Regulations: Disney Magic at Sea sailings are for UK residents only. Guests aged 18 and older must be fully vaccinated against Covid-19. Guests under 18 must provide proof of a negative PCR test result prior to embarkation. All guests, including those who have been vaccinated, are also required to undergo an antigen Covid-19 rapid test prior to boarding. Daily temperature checks and health questionnaires will be required for all guests during the cruise. Masks are required in public areas. More information here.

Emerald Cruises

The Scenic Group, including Scenic Luxury Cruises & Tours and Emerald Cruises are hoping to restart cruises from late July.

It says: “All guests with a booking scheduled to depart from July 1, 2021 to December 31, 2022 (or December 31, 2023 for Scenic Eclipse), have the option to defer their booking to an alternate date or cancel without the Scenic Group fee, up to 60 days prior to departure. For cancellations, the value of the booking will be applied as a Future Travel Voucher (FTV) which is valid for 24 months.”

Regulations: Guests will be required to complete a pre-departure medical health evaluation, including a test for Covid-19. More information here.

Fred Olsen Cruise Lines

Fred Olsen Cruise Lines resumed sailing from July 5, with new ship Borealis’ maiden voyage. New itineraries include a Welcome Back series of British Isles cruises, plus the Netherlands, Norway, Iceland, the Balearics and the Canary Islands.

Regulations: Fred Olsen is in the process of developing a Safe Sailing Charter to include a number of measures, including rules on vaccination, testing, social distancing and the wearing of face masks. More information here.

G Adventures

G Adventures is hoping to resume operations from August 1.

It says: “Our Book with Confidence policy lets you cancel and rebook a tour closer to the time of departure, giving you added flexibility and peace of mind. Effective until June 30, 2021 you can cancel and rebook up to 30 days prior to your departure date.”

Regulations: All travellers are required to complete a Covid-19 questionnaire and encouraged to take a Covid-19 test 72 hours prior to travel. More information here.

Holland America Line

Holland America Line will restart cruises from Greece from August 15, with four sailings from Piraeus on Eurodam on sale now.

Regulations: Holland America Line cruises from Greece will be available for guests who have received their final dose of an approved Covid-19 vaccine at least 14 days prior to the beginning of the cruise and have proof of vaccination. More information here.


Hurtigruten will restart its Norwegian coastal sailings on all seven of its vessels between Bergen and Kirkenes in July.

Regulations: Guests must show a negative Covid-19 test from the previous 72 hours prior to boarding and there will be contactless temperature tests on embarkation and outside restaurants. Face masks are required in all common areas of the ship. More information here.

Marella Cruises

Marella Cruises resumed operations with a series of cruises from Southampton on Marella Explorer from June 25 and Newcastle on Marella Explorer 2 from July 10.

It says: “We’ll be as flexible as we possibly can if Covid-19 means your cruise needs to be cancelled. We’re constantly reviewing the latest travel advice around the world and will work with you to take whatever the right action is for your particular circumstances. If you can’t sail due to not being vaccinated, you can change or cancel your booking for free.”

Regulations: Anyone aged 18-years and older will be required to have had both Covid-19 jabs at least seven days before travelling. Guests of all ages must also provide proof of a negative lateral flow test before boarding. More information here.

MSC Cruises

MSC Cruises restarted on May 20, with a new programme of British Isles cruises on board its flagship MSC Virtuosa departing from its new terminal in Southampton.

It says: “It’s time for UK holidaymakers to get back on board and enjoy a well-deserved break from what has been a very challenging 12 months for everyone in so many ways. MSC Cruises is a family-owned company and our guests are an extension of that, so we are looking forward to welcoming them and their families back on board.”

Regulations: The cruises on MSC Virtuosa are only open to UK residents. All guests will be tested prior to embarkation, while non-vaccinated guests will also be required to show proof of negative PCR test. There will be regular onboard health screenings, plus reduced capacity to allow for social distancing and face masks will be required. More information here.

Norwegian Cruise Line

Norwegian Cruise Line will resume operations from Greece in July, and Spain and Italy in September.

Itineraries from US and international ports restart this autumn. It has also announced its return to Seattle for the Alaska cruise season, with a start date of August 7.

  • Norwegian Joy will cruise from Miami beginning October 19 with five to 11-day Caribbean voyages.
  • Norwegian Breakaway will cruise seven-day itineraries to Bermuda from New York beginning October 24.
  • Pride of America will offer seven-day Hawaii interisland voyages from Honolulu beginning November 6.
  • Norwegian Bliss will cruise from Los Angeles for seven-day Mexican Riviera voyages beginning November 7.
  • Norwegian Encore will offer seven-night itineraries from Miami to the Caribbean beginning November 14.
  • Norwegian Escape will cruise for the first time from Orlando (Port Canaveral), offering seven-day itineraries to the Caribbean beginning November 20,
  • Norwegian Pearl will sail from Miami offering Panama Canal, Bahamas and Caribbean cruises beginning December 23.
  • Norwegian Jewel will offer roundtrip Panama Canal cruises from Panama City beginning January 20, 2022,
  • Norwegian Sun will offer a five-day Japan itinerary from Hong Kong, before sailing a variety of 11-day cruises from Hong Kong, Singapore and Bangkok beginning January 28, 2022
  • Norwegian Spirit will cruise 12-day Australia and New Zealand voyages from Sydney, and Auckland, New Zealand beginning February 9, 2022.

It says: “We have been working diligently towards our resumption of operations, focusing on the guest experience with health and safety at the forefront. The growing availability of the Covid-19 vaccine has been a game changer. The vaccine, combined with our science-backed health and safety protocols, will help us provide our guests with what we believe will be the healthiest and safest vacation at sea.”

Regulations: For cruises up to October 31, guests will be required to be fully vaccinated and tested prior to boarding. Parent company Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings has launched its SailSAFE Health and Safety Program, which includes enhanced health screening protocols and collaboration with land-based tour operator partners to extend health and safety measures to each destination. More information here.

Oceania Cruises

Oceania Cruises will resume cruise operations from August 29, with sailings to Scandinavia and Western Europe on the 1,250-guest Marina from Copenhagen. It has also announced:

  • Riviera will resume cruises beginning with a sailing from Istanbul on October 18 and sail a series of Mediterranean voyages prior to beginning a winter 2021-2022 series of Caribbean voyages from Miami;
  • Insignia will resume sailings with the December 21 Panama Canal voyage from Miami, before the sold-out 180-day Around the World cruise from Los Angeles to New York;
  • Sirena will start sailings with the January 22, 2022 Caribbean voyage from Miami to Panama City.

“This is an exciting day for our guests and team members alike as we begin to prepare another three ships to resume sailing in Europe, the Caribbean, and the eagerly anticipated kickoff of our epic Around the World in 180 Days voyage for 2022,” said Bob Binder, President & CEO of Oceania Cruises.  

Regulations: All guests and crew must be fully vaccinated, at least two weeks prior to embarkation, in order to board. All guests will be required to take Covid-19 antigen tests prior to boarding and disembarkation. Face coverings are currently required for guests while indoors and when physical distancing is not possible. More information here.

P&O Cruises

P&O Cruises restarted with a series of short-break and week-long UK cruises from June 27 on its ships Britannia and Iona.

It says: “Following recent Government announcements and as the vaccine programme is rolled out across the globe we can all begin to feel a sense of reassurance and hope that this current lockdown period in the UK will come to an end. Life can, we hope, slowly return to some semblance of our previous normality as hospitality opens up and summer holidays can be booked with confidence.”

Regulations: The sailings on Britannia and Iona will be for UK resident Covid-19 vaccinated guests only. Pre-embarkation Covid-19 tests may also be required. More information here.

Paul Gauguin Cruises

Paul Gauguin Cruises is hoping to restart from August 22.

It says: “Our guests and crew always come first, and we want to assure you that their health and well-being is our top priority. Due to the continued Covid-19 outbreaks around the world, we have made the difficult decision to suspend our cruise departures up to and including August 21, 2021. We are eager to return to sailing when we believe that the environment will support it.”

Regulations: All guests will be asked to present proof of a negative Covid-19 PCR test at embarkation and will undergo a health check and screening by the ship’s medical staff. More information here.


Ponant restarted with a cruise around Iceland from June 16 and a round-trip from Venice on June 25.

Regulations: All guests must be fully vaccinated at least 14 days before departure and a PCR test will be carried out before embarkation. Wearing a mask is mandatory when moving in all public areas. More information here.

Princess Cruises

Princess Cruises restarts with a series of Seacations from Southampton on board Regal Princess and Sky Princess from July 31.

It says: “These resort-style Seacations offer the perfect opportunity to relax and enjoy some time off. We believe that these cruises will appeal to both our loyal guests who are eager to get back onboard our beautiful MedallionClass ships and holidaymakers looking to experience Princess for the first time.”

Regulations: The Seacation sailings will be for UK resident Covid-19vaccinated guests only. More information here.

Regent Seven Seas Cruises

Regent Seven Seas Cruises restarts with an 11-night round-trip cruise from Southampton on September 11 on board new ship Seven Seas Splendor.

Regulations: All guests and crew must be fully vaccinated, at least two weeks prior to embarkation, in order to board. All guests will be required to take Covid-19 antigen tests prior to boarding and disembarkation. Face coverings are currently required for guests while indoors and when physical distancing is not possible. More information here.

Riviera Travel

Riviera Travel resumed its river cruises on June 1.

It cancelled all six summer sailings on its ocean vessel, MS Seaventure.

Regulations: All guests are required to be fully vaccinated against Covid-19, or to have presented a negative PCR test before travelling. More information here.

Royal Caribbean International

Royal Caribbean International restarted with a series of Ocean Getaways and British Isles Cruises on board Anthem of the Seas from July 7.

It says: “The UK is a place we hold near and dear to our heart at Royal Caribbean. We miss our UK guests and are as eager as they are to get back to cruising from Southampton,. We are delighted with the UK government’s recent announcements regarding cruising and are excited to set sail again.

Regulations: The cruises on Anthem of the Seas will only be available to UK residents over the age of 18 who are fully vaccinated.


Saga Cruises restarted with a series of ex-UK itineraries from June 27, on board Spirit of Discovery and its new ship Spirit of Adventure.

It says: “We know how much our guests want to get travelling again so we are delighted to be launching our all-inclusive, round-Britain Summer cruise itineraries taking in destinations from the Orkney Islands to the Norwegian fjords. The inaugural cruise of our brand-new boutique ship, Spirit of Adventure, will be a real highlight.”

Regulations: All guests are required to be fully vaccinated for Covid‑19 at least 14 days before boarding. The ships are operating at a reduced capacity to allow social distancing and the line has received the independent Shield+ accreditation from Lloyd’s Register. More information here.


The Scenic Group, including Scenic Luxury Cruises & Tours and Emerald Cruises are hoping to restart cruises from late July.

It says: “All guests with a booking scheduled to depart from July 1, 2021 to December 31, 2022 (or December 31, 2023 for Scenic Eclipse), have the option to defer their booking to an alternate date or cancel without the Scenic Group fee, up to 60 days prior to departure. For cancellations, the value of the booking will be applied as a Future Travel Voucher (FTV) which is valid for 24 months.”

Regulations: Guests will be required to complete a pre-departure medical health evaluation, including a test for Covid-19. More information here.


Seabourn restarted cruises in the Mediterranean on July 3 with sailings on Seabourn Ovation from Greece.

It says: “The entire Seabourn family is truly excited to provide our award-winning travel experience aboard Seabourn Ovation starting again this July in the Greek Isles. We’re grateful to the people of Greece for welcoming Seabourn back to the Mediterranean this summer.”

Regulations: All guests must be vaccinated at least two weeks before boarding. Seabourn is currently finalising its other Covid-19 protocols. More information here.


Silversea restarted on June 18 with cruises from Greece on its new flagship Silver Moon.

It says: “In recent months, we have seen the cruise industry resume responsibly in destinations around the world and we are delighted to announce these new inaugural sailings for our flagship. Vaccinations will play a critical role in ensuring the health and safety of our guests, crew and the communities we visit, which we prioritise above all else. We have introduced a range of initiatives to enable our guests to travel in superlative comfort and with unwavering confidence.”

Regulations: All guests and crew must be fully vaccinated and are required to take a Covid-19 test prior to boarding. Guests will be required to wear a mask in all indoor public areas, terminals and during shore excursions. More information here.


Titan resumed tours and cruises on July 1.

It says: “We want to reassure you that the wellbeing of our customers and staff are of the utmost importance. As this is a fluid situation our team is working around-the-clock to ensure all updates are updated as quickly and as accurately as possible to ensure all travellers depart on holiday with confidence, in the knowledge that they are in safe hands with Titan.”


Uniworld resumed Italian cruises on June 20 and French cruises on June 27.

“We’ve been waiting for this moment and are beyond thrilled to be back on the rivers, welcoming back our loyal guests on four of our most beautiful Super Ships this summer,” says Ellen Bettridge, President & CEO of Uniworld. “Our guests are like family to us, and their safety is our main priority, which is why we’re taking all of the necessary precautions to ensure they’re comfortable when they’re ready to explore the rivers with us again.”

Regulations: All guests will need to either show proof of vaccination or a negative Covid-19 test (either PCR or rapid), taken within 72 hours of the first day of their cruise. More information here.

Viking Cruises

Viking Cruises restarted its ocean cruises on May 22 with a series of sailings along the south coast of England from Portsmouth on new ship Viking Venus.

It says: “With our new protocol enhancements in place, we believe there will be no safer way to travel the world than on a Viking voyage and we look forward to welcoming UK guests back on board very soon.”

Viking has also announced other Welcome Back cruises from Bermuda and Iceland and select European river cruises restarted on June 1.

Regulations: There will be frequent quick and easy non-invasive saliva PCR tests for all guests and crew throughout the itinerary. Physical distancing will be in place and masks may be required on board. Viking has said that, until at least September 30, 2021, all Viking sailings will be available exclusively for vaccinated guests. More information here.

Virgin Voyages

Virgin Voyages restarts from August 6 with the Summer Soirée Series of cruises along the south coast from Portsmouth on Scarlet Lady.

It says: “Virgin Voyages has been looking forward to sailing, and we’re so excited to announce our plans to sail from the UK. Our team has curated such a fantastic experience for our Sailors and know this is a holiday they will love.”

Regulations: The sailings on Scarlet Lady are for UK residents only. All passengers must be over 18 and fully vaccinated.


Windstar Cruises will return its fleet to service on the following schedule, excluding voyages to Alaska, Mexico or the United States: Star Breeze (Caribbean, from June 19), Wind Star (Mediterranean, from June 19), Wind Spirit (Tahiti, from July 15), Wind Surf (Mediterranean, from August 8), Star Legend (Northern Europe, from September 4), Star Pride (Caribbean, from November 3).

Regulations: Proof of a current Covid-19 vaccination at least 14 days is required. A free Covid-19 antigen test will be administered prior to boarding. More information here.

Paid partnership

Quark Expeditions redefines polar helicopter adventure

Ultramarine, Quark Expeditions’ new game-changing polar vessel

The adventure focused line has introduced a new immersive helicopter programme on board its new polar ship Ultramarine

Quark Expeditions, long recognised as the global leader in polar adventures, has amped up its game by becoming the global leader in heli-adventures in the polar regions. Quark Expeditions’ immersive helicopter program takes guests even further, with two twin-engine Airbus H145 helicopters stationed on the new polar ship Ultramarine.

“Last year we shared the excitement of Ultramarine’s two twin-engine helicopters – which totally transform the way we explore the polar regions. Now, we’re even more exhilarated to share details of these two sleek, polar-ready helicopters that will enable us to take guests deeper into the polar regions than any other operator in the expedition industry,” said Andrew White, president of Quark Expeditions.

“What distinguishes our helicopter program from others in the industry is that we’ll be using our helicopters for far more than just flightseeing,” says White. “The deployment of our two H145 helicopters aboard Ultramarine means we will offer guests the most robust portfolio of adventure options in the industry, including heli-hiking, alpine kayaking and ice-sheet heli-landings – in addition, of course, to flightseeing. For 30 years we’ve been passionate about our mandate to bring people to the Arctic and Antarctic. Now, with our helicopters, we can move people to explore further once they arrive in the polar regions, to set foot where few humans have ever walked – something our competition can’t offer.”

As with all of its polar-based operations, Quark Expeditions applies the same high standards to its helicopter personnel. “Our helicopters will be commanded by highly experienced, well-travelled pilots,” explains Felix Christians, director of helicopter operations for Quark Expeditions. “In addition to having global flying experience, each of them will be trained at Quark Academy with all of our expedition team.”

The advanced technologies of the H145 helicopters, coupled with the team’s helicopter expertise – that dates back to 1991 – confirms Quark Expeditions’ role as the leader in heli-adventures in the polar regions.

One of Quark Expeditions’ Airbus H145 helicopters

Guests can expect unbeatable polar helicopter experiences during their voyage in the Arctic or Antarctic. The twin-engine Airbus H145 helicopters, which are the fastest in their category, are able to take guests further over the polar landscape than any other helicopter in their league, and deliver the largest portfolio of off-ship adventure options in the industry, allowing guests to fully customise their polar experience. Integral to those guest experiences are Quark Expeditions’ onboard staff and crew, who are recognised as the most experienced team in the polar industry. Polar travellers gravitate toward Quark Expeditions in part because its team has the most experience getting guests off the ship – as much as possible – during polar voyages.

Another aspect of the helicopter program is Quark Expeditions’ successful marriage of adventure with luxury, enabling guests to comfortably go beyond in the polar regions in ways never thought possible. Guests will enjoy superior comfort (seven out of eight passengers get a window seat) in a sleek, best-in-class helicopter equipped with interior padding for a quieter flight, individual seats and large scratch-proof windows that are perfect for photography. (And who doesn’t return from a polar adventure without memory cards full of incredible images?)

Another feature that makes the helicopter program a standout is its industry-leading polar safety. “The H145 helicopter features advanced autopilot technology and cutting-edge safety features that make it the safest aircraft in its category,” says Christians, who has flown helicopters around the world. “Add to that the advanced sustainability of these H145 helicopters, which are not only the most fuel-efficient in their class but are widely celebrated for their small external footprint and reduced noise pollution. Ultimately, our helicopters will enable guests to have a polar experience beyond anything they imagined. For us, that’s the best possible polar journey!”

Learn more about Ultramarine and its helicopter program here.

Five of the best

Cruises for those who love Greek islands

Greek island cruises

With quarantine due to be scrapped for double vaccinated travellers, suddenly much of Europe – and the wider world – is back on the cards this summer. Here, in the first of a new series, we round up five of the lines operating Greek island cruises

Seabourn has a fleet of small, luxury ships that can visit ports inaccessible to larger cruise ships. They carry between 450 and 600 passengers with an all-inclusive offering and in-depth excursions available through the Ventures of Seabourn program. It’s a great choice for accessing the Greek islands, with 14-day Wonders of the Aegean voyages that stop at ports including Patmos, Santorini, Athens, Crete, Mykonos and Limassol, Crete. Departing from Piraeus (Athens) on September 4, 2021, from £7,499pp for 14 days.

Celestyal Cruises offer many itineraries to the Greek islands year-round on their two ships, all beginning and ending in Athens. The seven-night Eclectic Aegean is a new itinerary that explores the Greek islands and Eastern Mediterranean with stops in Athens, Volos, Thessaloniki, Kavala and Istanbul, Turkey. There’s a mix of half-day and full-day excursions, with some including a port of call in Mykonos until 2am to allow passengers to experience the nightlife. Departing from Piraeus (Athens) on April 9, 2022, from £759pp for seven nights.

Another small ship cruise, SeaDream Yacht Club offers a more intimate yacht sailing experience, with 112 passengers and 95 crew on board each of their two ships. The seven-night voyage round-trip from Athens stops at Hydra, Sifnos, Santorini, Mykonos, Patmos and Milos, taking in a mix of more established and rugged destinations. The voyage is all-inclusive with five-star dining — including the only ‘raw food’ menu at sea comprising of raw, organic and vegan dishes. Departing from Piraeus (Athens) on September 14, 2021, from £3,070pp for seven nights.

Azamara has multiple dates for its new seven-night Greece Intensive voyage. The journey begins in Athens before moving on to Limassol in Cyprus, Rhodes, Heraklion, Santorini and Mykonos, before disembarking back in Athens. One of the things Azamara really tries to excel at is the length of its shore excursions and tours, with some port stops lasting until late into the evening. The excursions tend to take in more hidden and lesser-known places on the shores, too. Departing from Piraeus (Athens) on September 25, 2021, from $1,511pp for seven nights.

Windstar Cruises as a fleet of small ships, making more hidden ports like Nafplio, Patmos and Monemvasia accessible to passengers, as well as some of the more well-known ones including Santorini and Mykonos. This line tends to be more popular with those looking for a more casual cruising experience that’s destination-focused. 148 guests can sail aboard, with the Treasures of the Greek Isles voyage including later evening visits in Santorini, Kusadasi, Patmos and Mykonos so passengers can make the most of their time in these destinations. Departing from Piraeus (Athens) on September 18, 2021, from $5,199pp for seven days.


Bigger, better, lasting longer

epic cruises

As demand for longer holidays increases, epic cruises of 20 nights or more are an ideal option for people who are keen to make up for lost time. Janine Kelso looks at some of the best

More and more travellers are seeking epic cruises in a bid to make up for the time lost due to Covid-19. Cruise specialist revealed in June that it has seen demand for extended sailings increase by 10 per cent this year compared to 2019. Voyages of three weeks and over visit to destinations across the world and often include hotel stays and tours either side of sailing, to allow guests to make the most of their time away. According to the agency, sailings from Sydney to Pacific Islands such as Bora Bora, Tahiti and Hawaii have seen the biggest increase in popularity, with a more extensive, 30-night tour of the far east including Singapore and Tokyo and 27 nights in Australia and New Zealand also proving popular.

It’s not surprising, of course. Many travellers – particularly affluent ones, who make up a large segment of the cruise market – will be dreaming of getting away. Having been able to save, and with many of them retired, and therefore with an abundance of free time, the trend for longer holidays is likely to stay. Here, we round up a few of the best long cruises that vary from 20-night sailings to mammoth 145-night world cruises.



Hawaii, Tahiti and Marquesas with Holland America Line

Who? Holland America Line
Where? Hawaii, Tahiti and Marquesas
When? February 27, 2022
How long? 35 days
How much? £6,139

Perfect for travellers wanting to swap the grey British winter for a lush tropical paradise, this round-trip from San Diego follows a westbound route to see the best of the South Pacific, with overnight stays in Honolulu, Bora Bora and Papeete. Say aloha to a raft of dreamy excursions, including submarine rides, whale-watching and snorkelling with blacktip reef sharks. Included in the fare are three shore excursions, all meals and drinks and wi-fi.

Classical Islands of Greece with Saga

Who? Saga
Where? Greek Islands
When? October 13, 2022
How long? 22 nights
How much? £6,527

Departing Southampton, this round-trip Mediterranean cruise is a top pick for cruisers who prefer not to fly. The 22-night cruise with over-50s specialist Saga is awash with Greek gems, including the Parthenon temple archaeological site, the birthplace of the Olympic Games, Olympia, and Knossos Palace, famous for its ancient frescoes. Included in the fare are five sightseeing tours in Malaga, Valletta, Athens, Palma and Lisbon, along with all meals, drinks, tips, wi-fi and port transfers.


Between the Poles with Hurtigruten Expeditions

Who? Hurtigruten Expeditions
Where? Canada to Antarctica
When? September 2, 2022
How long? 66 days
How much? £29,066

Kayaking in Antarctica and visiting an indigenous tribe in the Darién province of Panama are among the incredible highlights of this bucket list adventure. Departing Edmonton, Canada, this cruise-of-a-lifetime features rarely-visited places in the Canadian Arctic, coastal Greenland, the Panama Canal, the coast of South America and Antarctica, before ending in the Chilean capital, Santiago. Visiting seven countries, this vast voyage takes place on board expedition ship MS Fram. Additional pre- and post-tours are available to must-see spots, including Easter Island and Machu Picchu. The cruise showcases “some of the most spectacular nature and wildlife of our planet” and offers “authentic encounters with unique cultures”, according to Asta Lassesen, CEO, Hurtigruten Expeditions. Included in the fare are all meals and drinks, wi-fi, €750 onboard credit and laundry service.

Australia, Asia and Alaska with Viking Cruises

Who? Viking
Where? Australia, Asia and Alaska
When? September 20, 2022
How long? 79 days
How much? £24,990

Combining five shorter cruises, this 79-day voyage spans 12 countries and features 39 guided tours. Departing from Sydney and ending in Vancouver, this Viking sailing includes stops in Indonesia, Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam, Hong Kong, Japan and Alaska. Thrilling shore excursions include a cruise to see jumping crocodiles in Darwin, Australia; a feng shui class in Singapore; a hot spring experience in Beppu, Japan; and bear watching in Alaska. The all-inclusive price includes return flights from the UK, 24-hour room service, all meals, alcoholic drinks with lunch and dinner, free wi-fi, complimentary use of spa facilities, tips and an excursion in almost every port.

epic cruises

Viking cruise ship in Australia


Sojourn 2022 World Cruise with Seabourn

Who? Seabourn
Where? World cruise
When? January 11, 2022
How long? 145 nights
How much? £48,509

This epic 145-day world cruise visits an eye-popping 72 ports in 28 countries. Carrying just 600 guests, intimate yacht Seabourn Sojourn departs from Los Angeles and heads west, calling in at Hawaii, the islands of the South Pacific, New Zealand, Australia and a slew of destinations in Asia, Arabia and Africa, before ending in Athens on June 6, 2022. Standout activities include sand-tobogganing in Queensland and a classical concert under the stars in the ancient ruins of Kuşadasi, Turkey. The all-inclusive fare includes all-suite luxury accommodation, an in-suite bar stocked with your favourite tipples, complimentary champagne, fine wines, spirits and soft drinks with open bars throughout the yacht, gratuities, and gourmet dining with menus created by celebrity chefs in The Restaurant.

MSC World Cruise

Who? MSC
Where? World cruise
When? January 5, 2022
How long? 117 days
How much? From £11,661 per person

This showstopping MSC voyage sails round-trip from a choice of four departure points, including Civitavecchia (January 4), Genoa (January 5), Marseille (January 5) and Barcelona (January 7). Featuring a whopping 43 destinations in 24 countries, MSC Poesia will make stops at ports in South America, Europe, Australia and Asia. Notable shore excursions include an end-of-the-world train ride through Tierra de Fuego National Park, and a traditional cooking class in Papua New Guinea. Included in the fare are 15 shore excursions, meals and drinks (during lunch and dinner), and 30 per cent off laundry.



I’m a Celebrity… get me back out here!

Jane Archer joins Celebrity Cruises on their first Seacation from Southampton on board Celebrity Silhouette, and finds that Covid protocols do not adversely affect the cruise experience

Celebrity Cruises joined the many cruise lines now sailing in UK waters when Celebrity Silhouette set off from Southampton earlier this month on its first revenue sailing since the pandemic struck.

It’s the ship’s third season sailing from Southampton and, not only is the ship looking different after a multi-million-dollar refit in January 2020 (see below), but life on board is different due to Covid protocols. For one thing, there are only 1,000 of us on board – a third of the ship’s normal capacity – to comply with the UK government rules on social distancing.

For another, everyone over 18 must be fully vaccinated, with the last jab at least 14 days before boarding, and also have a negative PCR test within 72 hours of sailing (under 18s can get away with a negative antigen test at the port). Celebrity pays for the tests, so financially it is no problem, but it is a worry. Luckily, Celebrity thought to provide PCR tests at the port as several passengers didn’t get their results in time.

We were instructed to download Celebrity’s app well ahead of the sailing, check in online and, on the day before departure, complete a health questionnaire. Only then was our boarding pass released.

Once on board, which was impressively fast and efficient despite all the extra documents to be checked, masks indoors are a must unless in your cabin or eating or drinking. There are one-way systems, all food in the buffet is served and tables are blocked off so people don’t sit too close together.

It’s not ideal, but didn’t much affect the cruise experience. Indeed, after more than 15 months of lockdowns, tiers and masks, everyone just seemed relieved to be sailing again. “Guests were in tears as they came on board,” said Celebrity UK managing director Jo Rzymowska.

“Talking to agents and consumers, people want surety. They want to know their holiday won’t be cancelled and a cruise, with cuisine and entertainment included, and great service, is such good value compared to staying in a hotel in the UK.”

On Celebrity, drinks, tips and wi-fi are now also included on all cruises and for all passengers.

What did ruffle a few guests’ feathers was discovering they couldn’t go ashore in Dover, Belfast and Liverpool – the three ports we visited – unless they were on a ship’s excursion. Those who did join an excursion were given a list of do’s and don’t by the guide. In a nutshell, do enjoy yourselves and don’t wander from the group or you won’t be allowed back on board.

This could all change when the UK’s Covid restrictions are lifted on July 19, but the final decision will be made by Celebrity’s health experts.

What’s new on Celebrity Silhouette?

Celebrity Silhouette returned to its summer port of Southampton this month after a multi-million-dollar revamp that has spruced up carpets and furniture in several public areas and, more importantly, revamped bars, opened up more spaces and added luxurious hang-outs for top-paying passengers. Here are six of the main changes.

Celebrity Silhouette, SI, Celebrity Revolution, revitalized, refurbishment, public venue, public rooms, Solstice Class, The Retreat Sundeck, seating, bar, bars and lounges, sky, Suite Class

Beat a Retreat
British designer Kelly Hoppen has been working her magic to create a private two-storey deck space exclusive to suite passengers. The result is a stylish blend of chic greys, reds, blacks and whites, with cushioned sofas and loungers, and cool beach huts where couples can snuggle up. Staff are on hand to deliver drinks from the bar. If afternoon tea or a break from the sun calls, passengers can head to the new Retreat Lounge, a light bright Hoppen masterpiece that has replaced the country club-style Michael’s Club.

Get Social
If the 40 craft beers don’t get passengers excited in Craft Social, a new bar that pays homage to the amber nectar, the way the barman fills the glasses will. None of that beer pump nonsense. Instead a clever use of magnets allows beers on tap to be whooshed up into the glass from the bottom, earning the new system the name ‘bottom up’. The room itself – formerly a wine emporium called Cellar Masters with dark, heavy furniture – has had a complete makeover, giving it a light, bright sports bar ambience. Light bites including spicy chicken legs and mac and cheese are available at extra cost.

The little chef is back
After making a splash with diners on Celebrity Edge, Le Petit Chef restaurant has replaced Qsine, the ‘playful’ food emporium on Celebrity Silhouette. The new-look diner combines great food and service with a fun touch of theatre thrown in – namely the animated antics of Le Petit Chef preparing each course (think: riding a lobster, battling an octopus and getting trapped inside a clam) projected onto each diner’s plate before the actual dish is served. There are two ‘shows’ and menus – one all new, the other that made its debut on Celebrity Edge – on each cruise, with a third to come. Cost is $50 per person.

It’s all very well
Katie Brauer, a leading light in the world of yoga, has designed new Slo Flo and Power Flo classes ($19 each for 45 minutes) for Celebrity Silhouette as part of the company’s focus on health and wellness. In the spa, passengers can enjoy a massage while cocooned in warm ‘sand’ on a new quartz crystal bed. In the gym, spinning fans can keep fit on new Peloton bikes using either their own subscription or by buying a one-week class pass for $119. There are six bikes and two are available for Penthouse passengers to have in their suite on request at no charge.

Sunset boulevards
Large swathes of lawn have been removed from either side of the Sunset Bar, creating more seating for passengers to enjoy sunny days and sailaways. It’s one of several changes on Celebrity Silhouette’s lawn, which also now boasts a big new movie screen and all new furniture in eight cabanas on the lawn have all new furniture. These can be rented for $99 and $249 respectively for a port and sea day, including a plentiful supply of water, beers and wine.

Something more to drink, sir?
A new bar in Celebrity Central, an area just outside the theatre, means show-goers can stock up on their favourite tipple before taking their seat for the evening’s entertainment. The nearby casino bar has also been expanded, with a new seating area separated from the game machines that makes it more attractive to passers-by as well as gamers.

How to Sell

How to Sell: Wellness cruises

Each issue, cruise expert Jane Archer shares her tips on selling a specific area of cruise. This time, she looks at wellness cruises

A decade ago, most people had cruise down as a byword for over-indulging. These days, cruising and wellness are as inseparable as wine and cheese – but a whole lot better for you. State-of-the-art gyms are full of the latest keep-fit gadgets and gizmos, tranquil spas promise to reconnect passengers with their inner selves and a new drive towards healthy eating has resulted in calorie-counting menus and creative plant-based dishes. Now you cruise to stay in shape, not pile on the pounds. It’s all so cool that even celebrities are getting in on the act, linking their brands to the mind, body and soul messages being disseminated by cruise lines. The wellness revolution doesn’t end at the gangway either, with tours geared around health and staying in shape a must in today’s excursion mix. We look at health and wellness onboard and ashore on the oceans and rivers, as well as what’s cooking for veggies and vegans. Here are some of the best wellness cruises.

Wellness on board

Wellness on cruise ships can be as simple as a daily trip to the gym or taking time out in the spa, but there is plenty more to help passengers keep mind, body and soul together, from high-octane spinning and TRX Suspension classes to yoga and meditation sessions and even acupuncture. Classes mostly cost extra (not with the luxury lines), as does access to the thermal suite’s saunas and steam rooms.

Go goop

Who? Celebrity Cruises
Where? Mediterranean
When? September 24, 2022
How long? Nine nights
How much? From £1,599pp

Celebs and wellness link up on the 3,260-passenger Celebrity Beyond, which launches in 2022 with new AquaClass SkySuites, and a health and wellness programme in partnership with Gwyneth Paltrow’s goop and top names from the world of yoga and fitness. This cruise, round-trip from Civitavecchia (Rome), ticks off France, Italy and Spain. Price includes drinks, tips and wi-fi.

Go Champneys

Who? Marella Cruises
Where? Canary Islands
When? April 12, 2022
How long? Seven nights
How much? From £1,135pp including flights

Spa giant Champneys made its high seas debut on Marella Explorer, which has a vast spa where passengers can relax in steam rooms and saunas, tip ice over themselves, get scrubbed in hammams and detox in a blue room with heated loungers. This cruise, round-trip from Santa Cruz in Tenerife, circles the Canary Islands and pops into Madeira. Price includes transfers, tips and drinks.

Go Zen

Who? AmaWaterways
Where? Danube
When? April 24, 2022
How long? Seven nights
How much? From £3,084pp

AmaWaterways has wellness hosts on its river ships to get passengers bending and stretching, but the action ramps up several gears on the 196-passenger AmaMagna, a double-width vessel with a Zen wellness studio, spinning classes and Zumba workouts. This sailing is from Budapest to Vilshofen. Price includes excursions, wine, beer or soft drinks with meals and wi-fi.

Selling Tip

River cruise lines can help create an active-themed cruise to sell to a local walking or cycling club

Wellness ashore

The wellness kick doesn’t end just because passengers are going ashore. Choose the right cruise and clients can be off finding their Zen on excursions to yoga retreats, meditating with monks and revitalising their skin with mineral-rich mud. River cruising, once thought a sedate style of holiday, is now up there with the action, with daily hiking, cycling or kayaking excursions for the new-generation of passengers who want to stay in shape.


Who? Regent Seven Seas Cruises
Where? Mediterranean
When? November 2, 2022
How long? 17 nights
How much? From £9,689pp including flights

This cruise, from Venice to Barcelona via Greece, Italy, Malta and France, gives a snapshot of Regent’s shoreside wellness offering, with thermal baths in Naples and Rome, mountain-biking in Corfu and cycle-seeing in Lucca. It’s on the 750-passenger Seven Seas Splendor. Price includes transfers, speciality dining, tips, wi-fi, drinks and excursions (supplement for most wellness tours).


Who? Viking
Where? Caribbean
When? December 17, 2022
How long? 11 days
How much? From £3,290pp including flights

From snow rooms and saunas onboard to activities ashore, Viking has plenty to attract wellness lovers. This cruise, round-trip from San Juan on the 930-passenger Viking Sea, visits eight islands and offers yoga and tai-chi in St Lucia, kayaking in St Thomas and hiking in St Kitts. Price includes transfers, speciality dining, wine, beer and soft drinks with meals, tips and wi-fi.


Who? Avalon Waterways
Where? Rhône
When? July 19, 2022
How long? Seven nights
How much? From £2,303pp

With active discovery cruises on the Rhine, Danube and Rhone, Avalon has plenty to keep energetic sorts on their toes. This cruise, from Port Saint Louis to Lyon in France, has hiking in vineyards, biking in the Camargue and kayaking on the Ardèche river. It’s on the 128-passenger Avalon Poetry II. Price includes wine, beer and soft drinks with lunch and dinner, excursions and tips.

Selling Tip

A spa-themed cruise is a great alternative for clients looking to recharge their batteries at a land-based health resort

Veggies and vegans

There’s never been a better time for vegetarians – or vegans – who love to cruise as lines up their offering of meat-free and plant-based dishes. We’ve picked three of the best for no-meat diets, but others are gaining ground. To the three below, add Viking, which has added veggie options in all restaurants on its ocean-going ships, and AmaWaterways, which has Al Fresco, a restaurant ‘heavy on the veg’, on the double-width AmaMagna.

Choice selection

Who? Oceania Cruises
Where? Mediterranean
When? May 14, 2022
How long? 10 days
How much? From £2,789 including flights

Veggies and vegans are spoilt for choice on Oceania Cruises, which has hundreds of meat-free dishes in the main dining room, Terrace Café, and speciality restaurants on all ships and cruises. This sailing, from Venice to Civitavecchia (Rome), is on the 1,250-passenger Marina. Price includes wi-fi and a choice of either free excursions, a drinks package or cruise credit.

Selling Tip

Upgrade wellness aficionados to a spa suite. These mostly come with a host of perks including free and unlimited access to thermal suites

In the Raw

Who? SeaDream Yacht Club
Where? Mediterranean
When? August 31, 2022
How long? 11 days
How much? From £5,406pp

SeaDream was one of the first cruise lines to champion raw food, which is nothing to do with lazy cooking and everything to do with avoiding meat, fish and dairy. Raw food options are offered on its two 112-passenger yachts, SeaDream I and II, for breakfast, lunch and dinner, and on all cruises. This one is from Venice to Valletta on SeaDream II. Price includes all drinks and tips.

Vergin’ on veggie

Who? Virgin Voyages
Where? Mediterranean
When? June 5, 2022
How long? Seven nights
How much? From £2,202pp

Taking its cue from the musical Chicago, Virgin Voyages promises to razzle dazzle veggies and vegans in Razzle Dazzle, a mainly meat-free restaurant on all its Lady ships that serves everything from avo toast to roasted cauliflower and vegan cheesecake. This cruise, round-trip from Barcelona, is on the 2,700-passenger Valiant Lady. Price includes all dining, soft drinks, tips and wi-fi.



Got a cruise query? Let us assist you. The Cruise Adviser directory provides you with the vital contact details for all major cruise lines operating in the UK – meaning trade sales support is never more than a phone call away


A-Rosa River Cruises

Stephen Joyner, head of sales
07738 151711

Amadeus River Cruises

Kirsty Reid, product & sales manager
07551 124543


Jamie Loizou, managing director
033 3305 3902

Ambassador Cruise Line

Lisa Jacobs, head of trade sales

American Cruise Lines

Kirsty Reid, product & sales manager
07551 124543

American Queen Steamboat Company

Rupert Thomson, managing director
01223 568904

APT Touring

Jessica Shelton-Agar, national sales manager
01494 736147/07584 057341

Aurora Expeditions

Talia Schwartzman, sales executive
+61 2 9252 1033

Jay Turner, business development manager, UK and Europe
07841 867125


Frederic Guillemard, commercial director Europe
+34 93 497 0484

Avalon Waterways

Janet Parton, sales director
020 8315 4545

Azamara Club Cruises

Lori Scanella, business support executive
01932 834379



Lucy Clark, divisional director of sales, trains & cruises


Carnival Cruise Line

Luke Smith, head of UK & international sales
020 7378 4660

Celebrity Cruises

Nicola McNeish, head of sales planning & activation
07919 540017

Celestyal Cruises

Jo Reid, UK and Ireland country manager
07368 207881

Coral Expeditions

Elizabeth Webb, international sales manager


Janet Parton, sales director
020 8315 4545


John Fair, sales director
020 8328 1281

Crystal Cruises

Mick Dupont, head of UK sales
020 7399 7602

Cruising Excursions

Kirsty Bachelor, trade sales manager
07784 357977

Cunard Line

Cunard partnership team
0344 338 8656


Disney Cruise Line

Emma Martin, account executive
080 0171 2317


Emerald Waterways

Joseph Grimley, director of trade sales
07504 484657

European Waterways

Mark Robinson, sales and reservations manager
01753 598555

Exotic Heritage Group

Marco Rosa, UK representative
07973 876967


Far Horizon

Kirsty Reid, product & sales manager
07551 124543

Fred Olsen Cruise Lines

Geoff Ridgeon, head of sales
01473 746164

Fred River Cruises

Kirsty Reid, product & sales manager
07551 124543


G Adventures

Stuart Darnley, national sales manager
07964 983842

Great Rail Journeys

Lindsay Dixon, head of trade sales
01904 527180


Hapag-Lloyd Cruises

Aishling McLoughlin, sales representative UK & Ireland
07852 488471

Hebridean Island Cruises

Lisa White, reservations manager
01756 704704

Holland America Line

Dani Scannella, business development manager
07789 923665

Lucy Harris, business development manager
07773 043004

Charlotte Pinkus, business development representative
07585 806471


Anthony Daniels, UK general manager
020 8846 2666


Intrepid Travel

Joanna Reeve, tailor-made manager EMEA
0808 274 5179


Need-a-Cruise by JTA

Dave Green, managing director
0121 508 5567


Katarina Line

Olivera Lesinger, head of UK & overseas
+38 5 51 603 409


Latin Routes

Jessica Dennison, director
020 8546 6222

Leger Holidays

Ashley Dellow, head of retail sales
01709 385811

Lindblad Expeditions

Jacinta McEvoy, vice-president global sales
+1 212 261 9000

Lotus Cruises

Marco Rosa, UK representative
07973 876967


The Majestic Line

Louisa Grant, cruise co-ordinator
01369 707951

Marella Cruises

Andrew Isherwood, commercial support team
020 3451 2762

Mövenpick Cruises

Marco Rosa, UK representative
07973 876967

MSC Cruises

Victoria Taylor, sales operations manager
020 7092 8182


National Geographic Expeditions

Simon Chambers, operations manager
0800 988 3369

Nicko Cruises

Rupert Thomson, managing director
01223 568904

Noble Caledonia

Agency sales
020 7752 0000

Norwegian Cruise Line

Eamonn Ferrin, vice president of international business
023 8124 5000

Oceania Cruises

Lisa Clarkson, national accounts manager
07809 351545

Agency sales
0345 5051920


P&O Cruises

Brodie Hanley-McIntosh, trade channels manager
023 8065 5780


Kirsty Reid, product & sales manager
07551 124543

Paukan Cruises

Marco Rosa, UK representative
07973 876967

Paul Gaugin

Mick Dupont, head of UK sales
020 7399 7602

Pearl Seas Cruises

Susan Shultz, director of sales
+1 203 458 5280


Nabil Maillard, sales manager UK and Ireland
020 7092 6663

Poseidon Expeditions

Kate Statsenko, senior sales manager
020 3369 0020

Ports Direct

Karl Lapage, managing director
0843 084 3003

Princess Cruises

Gemma Withers, sales operations manager
023 8065 6607

Pullmantur Cruises

Simon Chambers, operations manager
0800 988 3369


Quark Expeditions

Andrew Schweitzer, business development manager, UK
07857 004191


Regent Seven Seas Cruises

Caroline Moody, business development executive
023 8068 2283

Anna Salter, business development executive
023 8068 2283

Riviera Travel

Darren Mussell, agency sales assistant manager
01283 744307

Rocky Mountaineer

Steven Harris, regional sales director
07970 519164

Royal Caribbean International

Trade support team
01932 834379


Saga Travel

Trade support team


Joseph Grimley, director of trade sales
07504 484657


Dani Scannella, business development manager
07789 923665

Lucy Harris, business development manager
07773 043004

Charlotte Pinkus, business development representative
07585 806471


Anja Ringel, vice-president, international marketing and sales
+49 40 3095 9217

SeaDream Yacht Club

Natalie Read. sales director, UK
07917 847300



Sales support
020 7340 0700

Star Clippers

Danielle Dudley, UK sales manager
077 6585 2116

Swan Hellenic

Mario Bounas, VP marketing
07929 914953



UK country manager
080 0810 8020

Titan Travel

Edwina Coppock, agency sales manager
01293 450726/07834 652135

Touchdown | Travel Industry Services

Robbie White, head of cruise product
020 8607 3805

Tradewind Voyages

Mark Schmitt, head of sales
07553 955047

Rachel Healy, business development manager
07552 622970


Colin Currie, head of sales
07891 257160

Travelsphere & Just You

Sarah Weetman, head of trade sales
07748 843244



Angela Sloan, key account manager
0808 168 9110


Variety Cruises

Chris Lorenzo, managing director, Seafarer Cruises
020 8324 3114

Victoria Cruises

Tom Antonucci, sales manager
+1 212 818 1680

Victory Cruise Lines

Rupert Thomson, managing director
01223 568904

Virgin Voyages

Shane Riley, associate vice president international sales
07979 127099

Viking Cruises


Mario Bounas, VP marketing
07929 914953

Volga Dream

Kirsty Reid, product & sales manager
07551 124543



Sandra Barnes-Keywood, head of sales
023 8042 8000 (option 2)

Windstar Cruises

Anna Perrott, business development manager UK
07593 137135