Planning a Cruise to Asia: Your First Steps

Photo courtesy of Teijo Niemela On the eve of my trip to Singapore to meet up with Compagnie du Ponant’s Le Soleal for a 12-night Indonesia-centric voyage, I’m reflecting on the pros – and cons – of traveling to Asia. In over ten years as chief editor of Cruise Critic, I’ve been to Asia just [...]

Destination Spotlight: 6 Things to Love About St. Maarten/St. Martin

I’ll be honest: I was a little leery about last week’s trip to St. Maarten/St. Martin. The dual-culture island — one side Dutch, the other French — seemed to become too popular for its own good, with up to seven ships in port at a time. Would the Caribbean stalwart have a soul under all [...]

Destination Spotlight: 5 Things to Do in Galveston Before Your Cruise

There’s no doubt Texas is gaining popularity as a homeport state. Galveston, severely damaged by Hurricane Ike in 2008, has recovered and currently serves as home base for Carnival Triumph, Carnival Magic and Mariner of the Seas (which will be replaced by Navigator of the Seas in November). With its historic buildings and clean beaches, [...]

Destination Spotlight: 5 Things to Do in Houston Before Your Cruise

There’s no doubt Texas is gaining popularity as a homeport state. Houston, which has seen only a handful of calls since Norwegian Cruise Line stopped using it as a homeport in 2006, has renovated its terminal facilities and is poised to permanently welcome Caribbean Princess next month. Offering more drive-to options for southern cruisers, particularly [...]

Destination Spotlight: What’s Coming to Costa Maya, Mexico

Call it the Comeback Kid: Built out of nothing and decimated by storms, the Mexican port of Costa Maya continues to not only survive, but thrive – and has ambitious plans for future growth. Located near the former fishing village of Majahual (also spelled Mahahual), Costa Maya receives regular year-round calls from Carnival Cruise Lines [...]

Pondering Progreso: 5 Things to Love

As Cruise Critic’s (relatively) new Destinations Editor, I’ve been spending lots of time reading our forums, looking to see what ports and regions inspire the most questions and concerns among our members. It soon became apparent that our members wanted more information about several popular ports in Mexico — Progreso and Costa Maya. Progreso, in [...]

Destination Spotlight: Touring Independently on a Cruise in Norway

One of the most difficult parts of planning a cruise is figuring out what to do in port — especially if you don’t want to take the ship’s tours or organize a group to book an independently arranged tour in advance. Sometimes it’s hard to strike a balance between spontaneity and not missing out on [...]

More Whales in Glacier Bay Lead to Ship Speed Adjustments

An “extremely high” number of whales in Alaska’s Glacier Bay has prompted the National Park Service to issue speed restrictions on cruise ships traversing the famed fjords. As many as 60 whales have been spotted in lower Glacier Bay recently, drawn to schools of small, high-calorie fish such as capelin, sandlance and herring, says Christine [...]

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