(9:35 a.m. EDT) -- Tauck will host BBC Earth presenters on select sailings next year as part of its ongoing partnership with the nature documentary makers.
BBC Earth presenters will join certain departures to Antarctica in January, as well as select sailings throughout the year including to the Galapagos and Costa Rica, revealed Tauck President Jennifer Tombaugh.
Additionally, starting next year all Tauck Expedition small ship cruises will feature exclusive BBC Earth programming and Tauck tour directors will receive training and certification by BBC Earth filmmakers and historians, as revealed at Seatrade in March.
The partnership, which has been in place since 2013, involves BBC Earth producing exclusive content for Tauck, which is then played onboard the small ships.
Speaking to Cruise Critic onboard a Tauck Bridges Danube river sailing, Tombaugh added: "These special films allow us to bring to life or offer a different perspective wherever we are. We're excited that next year certain departures will have BBC Earth Presenters onboard.
On its river sailings, Tauck is testing a number of new elements to its Bridges product this season, both on and off the ship. This includes optional bike rides along the route for all ages and abilities, and a magic show onboard.
Tombaugh said: "We're constantly fine tuning and tweaking the product to see what works for our passengers.
"On most Bridges river cruises, we see an even split between family groups and multi-gen groups, and we want to make sure we appeal to all ages.
"So, we're looking at adding more activities, as well as optional activities such as the bike rides."
Tauck currently only offers Bridges tours in July and August, but Tombaugh said she is keen to look at select sailings outside of these times such as at Easter and over Christmas.
Tombaugh also said Bridges had benefitted from the Boomer generation discovering its product and taking along their grandchildren, but ruled out any play for the millennial market.
Tauck added no new river ships this year but did put its jewel-class ships through a significant refurb, reducing capacity from 118 passengers to 98, making cabins larger and reconfiguring the specialty restaurant.
Tombaugh also ruled out any new ships next year, as well as expanding beyond the line's main area of central Europe: "We won't be going to Russia anytime soon. And we are not looking at expansion in the Far East. We do have the Yangtze Explorer in China but that is more part of a longer land tour," she said.
Tauck will be offering a number of new itineraries however, including Berlin to Warsaw and along the Rhine to Milan, as well as doubling its capacity in France.
--By Adam Coulter, Managing Editor, U.K.