Thursday, July 1, 2010

Luxury Cruises

As any of my regular readers know, my husband and I love to cruise. We have been on everything from 16 passenger boats to 3500 passenger ships.

Our 16-passenger adventure was our visit to the Galapagos Islands. One really needs to go on a small ship to the Galapagos to make visiting the islands easy. The smaller boats are also locally owned and by choosing a small boat, we know we were helping the local economy. And, just as important, the smaller boats have less of an impact on the fragile environment than the larger cruise ships.

Our 3500-passenger experience was a cruise from Auckland, New Zealand to Sydney, Australia. We sailed around the north and south islands of New Zealand and then across the Tasmanian Sea to Australia. I have to admit, for sailing in waters like the Tasmanian Sea that is typically rough, I was happy to be in a large ship.

One type of sailing still on our ‘to do’ list is luxury cruises. Our travel agent is a member of a large, luxury consortium and she has sailed on luxury ships as both a guest and as a hostess. She has been trying to persuade my husband and me to come along with her on one of the itineraries that she hosts. With everything included, from shore excursions, to wine, to tips, she points out that when you add it all up, a luxury cruise doesn’t have to be that much more expensive than a large ship mainstream cruise.

We have a couple of trips planned over the next year and a half. Two of them are cruises. No luxury cruise on our agenda yet but I’m sure my travel agent will keep her eye out for us, watching for that perfect itinerary at the perfect price that will finally persuade us to take a luxury cruise.

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