We Try It: Celebrity Cruises’ Suite Class

More and more, mainstream cruise lines are adding separate areas for their highest-paying passengers. Think executive floors on hotels or premium cabins on airplanes, with lounges, separate dining areas and personalized service — only at sea. MSC Cruises has the Yacht Club, Norwegian Cruise Line has The Haven, and Cunard has long had Grills Class. […]

We Try It: Volunteer Guides in Japan

Some people might call me cheap — but I prefer to think that I’m connecting more closely with the local culture when I opt to forgo shore excursions. Well, OK, I’m also saving money. So when I discovered that some shore excursions on my Asia cruise aboard Oceania Nautica topped $300, I knew it was […]

We Try It: Sailing on a Shakedown

Your favorite cruise line has announced the dates for the maiden voyage of a new ship. Excited to be one of the first onboard, you race to book it. New ship, new hardware: What could go wrong? Plenty. Here at Cruise Critic, we’re experts when it comes to "shakedown" cruises. The term is generally used […]

We Try It: Japanese Baths on Diamond Princess

Making promises over dinner and a few wines is OK but when it comes to agreeing to go naked in a Japanese bathhouse, it’s perhaps best to decide when totally sober. A couple of us thought we’d go au naturel to sample the brand-new bathhouse onboard Diamond Princess. After all, most onsens (baths) in Japan […]

We Try It: Late Flight after Debarkation? Get A Room!

On my last cruise, the ship forced us to get off by 9:15 a.m. but our flight wasn’t until 5:30 p.m. What are a travel editor, her baby, her parents, multiple bags and a stroller supposed to do for a day at Orlando Airport? Easy. We booked a day room. Some hotels, particularly those at […]

We Try It: Cool-Weather Cruising

“Are those earmuffs?!” a man asked with a mocking note in his voice. Yes, I had to admit I’d popped them on as we sailed away from Invergordon, Scotland, on Windstar’s 300-passenger Wind Surf. A brisk breeze filled Wind Surf’s huge sails, but my ears were toasty warm, thanks to those muffs – an item […]

We Try It: Ride the Rails, Before You Sail, on Rocky Mountaineer

Photos courtesy of Rocky Mountaineer “Bear on the left!” Like a kid, I can’t stop shouting and pointing at the black bear in the woods. Minutes later, bear gone, I’m scanning jagged mountain peaks for a glimpse of ice-blue glaciers. When lunch finally rolls around (second seating), I’m feasting on wild salmon while sipping chilled […]

We Try It: With Parasailing, Age is Relative

For those with the daredevil gene, the sight of a parasailing balloon rising across the waves is almost irresistible. The chance to soar high above the waves, to see a port from a seagull’s perspective, doesn’t come along every day and perhaps represents the truest break from the routine back home (not to mention fulfilling […]

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