Observed Onboard: Would You Switch Lines to Travel with a Crewmember?

Would you switch cruise lines to follow a crewmember? Wit and charisma go a long way in the cruise industry and many cruise ship captains achieve near-celebrity status. When Captain Dag Dvergastein left Regent Seven Seas Cruises and moved to Seabourn in 2010, for example, he took with him a loyal following of guests who enjoyed [...]

Observed Onboard: The $499 Bubble Bath

Here’s a new level of cruising decadence: $499 for a bath. OK, this is the top offering on Norwegian Cruise Line’s new Bath Butler menu, whereby a butler runs the bath and provides a bottle of Dom Perignon and sturgeon caviar for the guest to savor while they soak. But seriously? For $499, I would expect [...]

Observed Onboard: Do You Want to Meet Your Neighbors?

A curious event was listed on the daily program for the first evening of my recent Regent Seven Seas cruise: A block party. Scheduled to coincide with Sailaway, the event – where you step out of your cabin into the hallway to have a drink and meet your neighbors – is apparently it’s a tradition [...]

Live from….Costa Luminosa: 5 Things I Learned Onboard

Costa Cruises’ Costa Luminosa heads across the Atlantic in a few weeks, where it will trade its Mediterranean base for one out of Miami, sailing 10-night western Caribbean itineraries throughout the winter. I wondered: Will this ship, which has been geared to the Italy-based cruise line’s traditional, pan-European base appeal to fellow North Americans looking [...]

5 Things That Intrigued Me on My First River Cruise

After years on the high seas, I’ve finally given river cruising a try. My first sailing is on Amadeus Silver, the newest ship in the Amadeus by Lueftner Cruises’ fleet. I never go into anything without doing research, and working at Cruise Critic means I read and talk about river cruising all the time — [...]

Observed Onboard: Silly Weather Complaints

I was sitting in a café on a beautiful day in Vienna back in August when a large gentleman sporting a river cruise line tour excursion sticker bellowed across the next table to anyone who would listen: “We’re never coming to Europe in summer again. It’s too hot. Vienna is too hot. And Venice smells.” [...]

Observed Onboard: MSC’s Gluten-Free Galley

What would you do if you were stuck in the middle of the ocean with nothing to eat……? As a vegetarian, I’m highly aware of the challenges of eating out. Luckily for me, vegetarianism is now common and most restaurants cater for our requirements – even though the variety of choice can often be uninspiring. [...]

Observed Onboard: Shore Excursions with “Extras”

While cruising on Star Clippers last week, I joined a shore excursion from the Dalyan River in Turkey. We were to sail along the river in a small boat, daub ourselves with healing mud from a natural thermal pool and admire ancient rock tombs cut into the cliffs towering over the river. We were all [...]

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