River Cruising with Scenic Tours – An in depth look

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At times, we pedaled alongside Scenic Jasper © 2015 Ralph Grizzle

Scenic Jasper on the Danube. © 2015 Ralph Grizzle

 

Earlier this week, I was in Vienna for the christening of a new river cruise vessel from a company that I knew little about. Scenic (formerly Scenic Tours) launched its new Scenic Jasper alongside the Danube River in the lovely Austrian city.

As is customary at such events, the godmother, Australian novelist and comedienne Kathy Lette, made a speech and cut a ribbon that sent a bottle of champagne smashing against the hull.

Meet our World Cruise Hosts

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Cruise Specialists is known worldwide for its hosted World and Grand Voyages.

The secret to our success: fabulous hosts.

Since these seasoned travelers sail a good part of the year, they have an ever-expanding portfolio of experience and knowledge about the itineraries – which they delight in sharing with our clients.

Plus, with any hosted group voyage, you’ll enjoy the unique Cruise Specialists touches you’ve come to appreciate, such as assistance with pre-arranged dining reservations and stateroom special requests.

A New River Cruise Itinerary: The Loire In France — On A Paddle-Wheeler

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The beautiful Loire. © 2015 Ralph Grizzle

The beautiful Loire River. © 2015 Ralph Grizzle

Been there? Done that when it comes to cruising?

Here’s something you haven’t done: six- and eight-day itineraries along the Loire River, with visits to the region’s storied palaces — on a modern-day paddle-wheeler.

The paddle-wheels at work. © 2015 Ralph Grizzle

The paddle-wheels at work. © 2015 Ralph Grizzle

I just stepped off of the new Loire Princesse in Nantes, France.

Summer Cruising – Where to go and what to see

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Spring has sprung, which means now is the perfect time to start thinking about where you want to spend your summer!

ALASKA

The Draw: Amazing wildlife, in-your-face glaciers, iceberg strewn bays and outsize adventures.

Ever since the gold rush, our largest state has attracted folks with a thirst for adventure. Today’s explorers will discover riches on a grand scale: towering Mt. McKinley (aka Denali), the highest peak in North America; some 100,000 glaciers – including more than 50 named glaciers in Glacier Bay National Park and Preserve; a wealth of UNESCO World Heritage sites; a staggering array of creatures – from black bears and bald eagles to humongous whales; and some of the most incredible seafood on the planet.

3 More Cruise Lines Announce New Ships

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It seems like everyone is coming out with a new ship in the coming years!

Avalon Panorama Suite

Avalon Panorama Suite

We couldn’t be more excited to see all the new ways we can all enjoy cruising and convince even our most skeptical friends that it’s the best form of travel.

Did you see the in depth look at Regent Seven Seas Explorer? Or the Oceania Cruises Serena? Or the Seabourn Encore?

And now we have three more ship announcements in the last month!

Oceania’s Best Suites

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Owners Suite bedroom. courtesy of Oceania Cruises

Owners Suite bedroom. courtesy of Oceania Cruises

As far as suites go, Oceania Cruises sets the bar higher than most with its exquisite Owner’s Suites aboard its two newest vessels, Marina and Riviera. Though spacious, they’re not the biggest suites afloat, nor are they the flashiest.

What they are, however, is a modern take on the opulent and grand suites of the glory days of transatlantic ocean travel – and they’re some of my favorite accommodations at sea.

A day aboard Holland America Line Grand World Voyage

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What kind of food is served? What is there to do all day? Who else is on board?  These are just a few of the many world cruise questions we receive all year long from curious cruisers.

Holland-America-Line ms Amseterdam

Today we are excited to provide you with look at what our clients are experiencing right now on the Holland America Line Grand World Voyage, thanks to host Tom Mullen.

AmaWaterways AmaPura Ship Details

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When AmaPura launched in 2014 it was done with the style and flair that AmaWaterways has become accustomed to providing.  Guests onboard the AmaPura were greeted by a local dance group, who put on a spectacular cultural performance prior to the ship’s departure for Myanmar.

As this new destination continues to intrigue travelers, we wanted to take a closer look at the ship providing access to this mysterious land.

Seven separate categories of staterooms and suites are available:

AmaWaterways and Backroads Adventure Partnership

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AmaWaterways has a new partner, BackRoads a leader in the active travel market! This new combination will provide the ultimate in both luxury and activity to river cruisers.

Wachau Valley Vineyards

Wachau Valley Vineyards – Flickr photo by Jay8085

 

In teaming up with AmaWaterways, we are excited to combine our trademark biking, walking and hiking experiences with the luxury of river cruising. With these ship-based adventures, guests will have the opportunity to conveniently explore European cities and countryside on a Backroads trip, with the bonus of only having to unpack once.” said Backroads Founder and President, Tom Hale.

Mysterious Myanmar On AmaWaterways

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Sunset Temple Bagan

Popular river cruise operator AmaWaterways has always pushed the envelope when it comes to pioneering new destinations. The line was one of the first operators to realize the full potential of sailing along the Mekong River between Vietnam and Cambodia and to aggressively market the Mekong to North Americans alike.

The company also invested heavily in upgrading its ship along Russia’s Volga River, and currently leads the way in South Africa, where the 24-guest Zambezi Queen plies the Chobe as part of a comprehensive land-river-cruisetour.

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