The blue waters beckon
Get enchanted by the blue waters this winter and experience the luxury that comes with an old-world voyage. Take your pick from some of the most exclusive cruises from across the world.
Call of the Nile: Take in history and great views as you cruise down the river
THE NILE CRUISE
The longest river in the world, the Nile gets its name from the Greek word nelios, meaning river valley. Major cities located on the banks of the Nile are Cairo, Khartoum, Aswan, and Luxor. One thing’s for sure: every stage of the Nile cruise will bring history alive for you as you sail the blue waters of this enchanting river.
Ports of call: Cruises embark from both Luxor and Aswan, and the ports of call include the West Bank, Essna and Komombo.
What to do: The temple of Karnak in Luxor is a must-see as is the Valley of the Kings where the secretive tombs of the Pharaohs were built.
Onboard activities: You can swim in the pool or check out the shops selling souvenirs. Most bars have dance floors that give you the ideal opportunity to mingle with co-passengers. Games are organised by crew members and include dressing up in galabeyas (Egyptian dress). You can also enjoy performances by Egyptian dancers on board.
Tariffs: An idyllic way to discover the Nile is through the Oberoi Philae, Nile cruiser, where a four-night cruise will cost you around m600 (Rs 33,000) per person. An eight-night cruise from Thomas Cook will cost approximately Rs 29,800.
Website: www.oberoihotels.com, www.thomascook.com
THE DOWN UNDER CRUISE
A whole new world: There’s more to Australia and New Zealand than kangaroos and koalas
The land of kangaroos, koalas and kiwis offers some of the most exciting and enchanting destinations in the South Pacific. Make your dreams come true this winter in these exotic picture-perfect destinations.
Ports of call: Sydney and Hobart (Australia), Wellington and Christchurch (New Zealand)
What to do: A visit to Sydney is incomplete without visiting the Sydney Opera House and the Harbour Bridge. Nestled at the foot of the majestic Mt Wellington, Hobart is truly a picture perfect city and is also home to Australia’s oldest bridge—the Richmond Bridge. Christchurch in New Zealand is a vibrant arts capital.
Onboard activities: Enjoy the warm atmosphere of nautical-themed schooner bars, or savour champagne, fine wines and canapés in a champagne bar. Better still, visit the theme lounges for live music, entertainment and panoramic views of the sea.
Tariffs: A seven-day cruise on the Royal Caribbean would cost $899 (Rs 35,960). A 12-night cruise onboard Princess Cruises will cost around Rs 1,22,000
Website: www.royalcaribbean.com, www.pocruises.com
THE CARIBBEAN CRUISE
All aboard: Music, beaches, rainforests... there’s a lot to enjoy
Colourful, exuberant, and spectacular is how one can sum up the breathtakingly beautiful Caribbean islands. Anyone who’s ever been to this land of reggae and calypso cocktails will agree that the Caribbean is about all these and much more. The islands in the western Caribbean have a fascinatingly rich culture and history. You can explore archaic ruins, beaches, rainforests and waterfalls.
Ports of call: Port Canaveral in Florida, Coco Cay in Bahamas and Cozumel in Mexico.
What to do: Port Canaveral provides access to the wonderful theme parks and entertainment complexes of Orlando, and the spectacular Kennedy Space Center. Coco Cay in the Bahamas is a wonderland for adventure freaks. While in Mexico, explore the ruins of the ancient Mayan city of Tulúm.
Onboard activities: Try the rock-climbing wall, or work out with one of the fitness trainers. You can also try your luck at Caribbean stud poker, attend an art auction or enjoy live productions featuring Caribbean singers and dancers. There are even supervised activities for kids.
Tariffs: A Royal Caribbean Standard ocean view stateroom with window: $100-150 (Rs 4,000-6,000) per person, per day. A 14-night cruise from Costa Cruises costs about £684 (Rs 56,088).
Website: www.royalcaribbean.com, www.costacruises.com