Shermanstravel Blog

Cruise

Rendering of the Royal Caribbean Harmony of the Seas

Royal Caribbean Harmony of the Seas

Which cruise lines are making headlines this week? Travel journalist Donna Tunney — ShermansTravel’s cruise expert — has all the latest news. Check back every Tuesday for trends, new amenities, and money-saving ideas that help you plan a perfect vacation at sea. 

Thought the Oasis of the Seas — the world’s biggest cruise ship since 2009 — is humongous at a 5,400-passenger capacity? In 2016, Royal Caribbean International is launching an even bigger Harmony of the Seas, slated to accommodate 5,479 guests when it launches in spring 2016. Harmony’s design closely follow the Oasis with the concept of themed “neighborhoods,” such as Central Park, Boardwalk, the Royal Promenade, and Youth Zone. But new additions include three multi-story water rides, along with some high-tech features that debuted on the line’s Quantum of the Seas in late 2014 — including the robot-powered Bionic Bar, wristbands that double as stateroom keys, and onboard credit cards.  Read more

Singapore skyline

themreport

Is Asia the new Caribbean? For thousands of experienced cruisers ready to visit exotic places — such as China, Japan, Malaysia, Vietnam, and Indonesia — the answer is a resounding “yes.”

While some first-time cruisers set off for Asia, most are intrepid travelers who have already island-hopped in the Caribbean and sailed the familiar cruising grounds of Europe and Alaska. Now, they’re venturing off the beaten path — and cruise lines are delivering with more routes and better ports. Here’s a peek at what’s hot.

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Margerie Glacier, Tarr Inlet, Alaska cruise

Flickr/Tavis Jacobs

An Alaska cruise is a bucket-list trip for travelers who love the great outdoors. Cruise ships typically sail weeklong northbound and southbound trips, often between Seattle or Vancouver and Anchorage. Expect to find unbelievable scenery along the way, at points such as Tracy Arm Fjord and Glacier Bay, not to mention deliciously fresh seafood. It’s the voyage of a lifetime — and you’ll want to make sure your experience is the best that it can be. Here’s how to do just that:

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ha long bay - vietnam - mekong river - amawaterways cruise

AmaWaterways.com/Ha Long Bay

Which cruise lines are making headlines this week? Travel journalist Donna Tunney — ShermansTravel’s cruise expert — has all the latest news. Check back every week for trends, new amenities, and money-saving ideas that help you plan a perfect vacation at sea. 

Tour a monastery in Oudong. Visit the Royal Palace in Phnom Penh. Ride through local villages in a trishaw. These are the adventures that await AmaWaterways guests on seven-night Mekong River cruises in Vietnam and Cambodia. Even better: Passengers who book by March 31 save up to $2,500 per stateroom, and those traveling solo pay no single supplement. With the price break, balcony cabins on these sailings cost $1,648 per person — a super value for this luxury river cruise line. Optional pre- and post-cruise land stays are offered, too, at an extra charge.

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France, Calvados, Honfleur, Seine River Cruise

CroisiEurope

Not that we ever need more reasons to go to France, but river cruise company CroisiEurope is having an excellent two-for-one sale for a Seine Valley & Normandy Beaches river cruise that sails from Paris on April 23.

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NBreakaway

Norwegian Breakaway

Anchor’s up as you depart from New York’s Hudson River aboard Norwegian Cruise Line’s newest addition: the Norwegian Breakaway. This 18-deck cruise ship towers high enough to make a lasting imprint on the city’s skyline, as it stands the largest ever to homeport in New York City. We recently sailed on the Breakaway to find out what floats and what sinks among the 25-plus restaurants, five multi-story slides, fireworks show, and more.

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Blount Small Ship Adventures - 620

Blount Small Ship Adventures

Like to cruise without the crowds? Vacationing with a smaller cruise company may be right up your alley. And Blount Small Ship Adventures — now offering up to 40 percent off on three itineraries booked by February 27 —  is giving travelers the chance to get a taste for less.

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star wars day on disney fantasy cruise

Matt Stroshane/starwars.com

Which cruise lines are making headlines this week? Travel journalist Donna Tunney — ShermansTravel’s cruise expert — has all the latest news. Check back every week for trends, new amenities, and money-saving ideas that help you plan a perfect vacation at sea. 

Looks like the Force will be with Disney Cruise Line next year, when the heroes and villains of “Star Wars” board the Disney Fantasy. The new Star Wars Day at Sea experience will be staged during eight sailings to the Western Caribbean from Port Canaveral, Florida. Themed deck parties, fireworks, trivia games, meet-and-greets with the characters, and screenings will all be part of the fun. (The film line-up includes Disney’s new XD animated series, “Star Wars Rebels.”)

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Un-Cruise Ship on the Snake River

Eric Lindberg/Un-Cruise Adventures

Which cruise lines are making headlines this week? Travel journalist Donna Tunney — ShermansTravel’s cruise expert — has all the latest news. Check back every week for trends, new amenities, and money-saving ideas that help you plan a perfect vacation at sea.

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Windstar Cruises Phuket

Windstar Cruises

Don’t want to travel with a floating city? Ditch the hordes of passengers from larger cruise ships with an excursion on Windstar Cruises’ Star Pride – a luxury yacht that fits just 200 passengers. There’s no waiting in line for meals, there’s always room on the deck, and your suite isn’t teeny-tiny. And unlike some of the more intimate river cruises, this ship boasts extra amenities like onboard pools and an extendable platform for water sports, complete with a set of water toys for loan. Better yet, now through February 10, you can find a few spring sailing discounts for a good bargain.

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Disney's Elsa and Anna from Frozen coming to cruises

Flickr/Jeff Christiansen

Which cruise lines are making headlines this week? Travel journalist Donna Tunney — ShermansTravel’s cruise expert — has all the latest news. Check back every Tuesday for trends, new amenities, and money-saving ideas that help you plan a perfect vacation at sea.

It almost sounds too good to be true, but Royal Caribbean International has been quietly offering free WiFi on its new Quantum of the Seas. For the past few weeks, the cruise line has been testing how much usage its new satellite Internet system, O3b, can take. No promises that this will continue — Royal Caribbean usually charges 65 cents per minute or $10-$15 per day. But for now, if you’re sailing the ship in the near future, you can prepare for some onboard Instagramming.

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alaska cruise princess carnival vista norwegian escape iron chef jose garces

Flickr/tgerus

Which cruise lines are making headlines this week? Travel journalist Donna Tunney — ShermansTravel’s cruise expert — has all the latest news. Check back every Tuesday for trends, new amenities, and money-saving ideas that help you plan a perfect vacation at sea. 

Seeing massive, blue-white glaciers and spotting wildlife are the rewards of any Alaska voyage, but experiencing the Last Frontier becomes more immersive than ever on Princess Cruises this year. Its new North to Alaska! cultural program, for all Alaska itineraries this May through September, will give cruisers the chance to meet local Alaskans (including a real-life lumberjack), nosh on local food like king salmon and king crab, and enjoy a Klondike Festival and Midnight Sun deck parties.

Fares vary. Six-night sailings on Pacific Princess, for example, start from $599 per person in May and $799 in July.

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7 Reasons Why Princess Cruises’ Latest Ship, the Regal Princess, Rocks

Princess Cruises/SeaWalk

Princess Cruises’ latest ship, the 3,560-passenger Regal Princessdebuted less than a year ago in the Mediterranean. When we hopped aboard it’s inaugural Caribbean cruise from Fort Lauderdale last November to check it out, we discovered a ton of awesome perks onboard that would make any vacation at sea much more enjoyable. From an abundance of balcony staterooms to a thrilling glass-bottomed walkway, here are seven reasons why the new ship rocks.

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Norwegian Escape Snow Room

Norwegian Escape Snow Room

Which cruise lines are making headlines this week? Travel journalist Donna Tunney — ShermansTravel’s cruise expert — has all the latest news. Check back every Tuesday for trends, new amenities, and money-saving ideas that help you plan a perfect vacation at sea.

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arctic cruises news wine cuba mississippi river

Lwp Kommunikáció

Which cruise lines are making headlines this week? Travel journalist Donna Tunney — ShermansTravel’s cruise expert — has all the latest news. Check back every Tuesday for trends, new amenities, and money-saving ideas that help you plan a perfect vacation at sea. 

The chilly polar vortex might be wreaking havoc on some places across the country, but that won’t keep adventure seekers from booking an Arctic experience. We think Lindblad Expeditions-National Geographic has just the (cruise) ticket for remote landscapes, wildlife, and riveting ice forms. For those who aren’t familiar with these sailings, Lindblad Expeditions has been exploring the far reaches of Earth for 50 years, while National Geographic brings scientists, researchers, and photographers onboard to create a truly educational experience. This year’s seven Arctic trips include two new itineraries: the 23-day Exploring Greenland, Baffin and Ellesmere Islands; and the 13-day Exploring Greenland and the Canadian High Arctic. Rates start from $23,990 and $12,990.

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