April 12, 2011
(1 p.m. EDT) -- Yes, we've heard: Prince William and Catherine Middleton are set to marry in a few weeks. And while there's certainly no shortage of excitement among Brits, many are ready to hit the road -- or should we say, the high seas -- in order to avoid the crush of the crowds in London.
According to the Telegraph newspaper, more than 2 million people are planning holidays around the event, which is slated for April 29. Of course, the big day is an official holiday, and it just so happens to be sandwiched between the Easter holidays (April 22 and 25) and May Day (May 2), which means there will be just a short three-day work week splitting up two long weekends.
The result: There's a rare opportunity to escape on a spring cruise without having to take too many days off work. Thankfully, there's still time to capitalize on this unique occasion.
We've done a bit of scouting and have hand-picked some last-minute deals for cruises departing either on or before the royal wedding, all of which can still be booked. And with rates from as low as £57 per night, there's almost no reason not to.
14-Night Western Mediterranean Cruise from £799
If you have a few extra leave days to spare, you can sail aboard P&O Cruises' Oceana on this 14-night Western Mediterranean cruise, departing from Southampton on 16 April. You'll get to visit popular ports including Barcelona, Cannes and Rome from as little as £57 per night.
Read 23 Oriana cruise reviews.
10-Night Western Europe Cruise from £882
This 10-night Western Europe cruise on Fred. Olsen's Balmoral -- departing on 23 April -- will take you from Southampton to Spain, Portugal and Casablanca from £88 per night.
Read 25 Balmoral cruise reviews.
8-Night Spain and Portugal Cruise from £579
From as little as £72 per night, you can spend eight-nights exploring Spain and Portugal aboard Fred. Olsen's Boudicca. This cruise sails roundtrip from Liverpool on 23 April.
Read 11 Boudicca cruise reviews.
10-Night Mediterranean Cruise from £1,749 + OBC
From less than £200 per night you can sail from Rome to Venice on 26 April, 2011, aboard Oceania's Marina, its newest upper-premium vessel. Plus, you'll receive up to $500 in onboard credit. Read 13 Oceania's Marina cruise reviews.
7-Night Mediterranean from £829
On 28 April, you can set sail from Barcelona on Holland America's Eurodam and spend a week making your way through Tunisia, Italy and Malta. Nightly rates are just bit more than £100.
Read 266 Eurodam cruise reviews.
6-Night Norwegian Fjords Cruise from £399
Sail from Hull on 29 April and spend six-nights cruising the Norwegian fjords aboard Cruise & Maritime Voyage's Ocean Countess, from just £67 per night.
Read 2 Ocean Countess cruise reviews.
Be sure to visit Cruise Critic U.K.'s cruise deals page for more information on these sailings, and information on additional sailings. --by Shayne Rodriguez Thompson, Editorial Assistant