Nature-lovers might be surprised to know that they can seek out birds, animals and outdoor activities on a cruise vacation. From small expedition ships staffed with naturalists and expedition leaders to bigger ships with wilderness or wildlife-themed shore tours, passengers have a wealth of options to embrace the outdoors. But which destinations lend themselves to the best nature-based cruises?
From Antarctica with its penguins to the Arctic with its polar bears, cruisers are actually spoiled for choice. They can seek out closer-to-home Mexico or Alaska nature cruises or journey to exotic Africa for wildlife cruises. If you've got your binoculars, bird books and hiking boots all ready to go, here are some of the best cruise destinations for nature-lovers, by region.