Not all ships are the same!
There is a wide range of cruise options, and with my first hand sailing experience, I will help you find a cruise to suit your style and interests.
The cruise industry is growing and the competition between the cruise lines is creating a lot of options for the 24 million cruisers. In the next five years there will be 55 new ships – 33 ocean ships and 22 riverboats.
There are ships with 12 passengers and ships with over 5,000 passengers There are all-suite ships and informal exploration ships, and if you prefer you can set sail in a full sailing ship or river boat. You can charter a sailing ship, to sail on your own, or with a captain and your own chef. There is a cruise experience to fit your interests.
The Travel by Tatten Advantage
My clients enjoy exclusive benefits on thousands of voyages including exclusive savings, upgrades, shipboard credits and more.
Multi-generational travel is becoming more popular, as families come together to celebrate a special birthday or anniversary; and if you are planning a family reunion a cruise is a perfect choice. Everything is taken care of, no deciding where everyone will sleep, no cooking and no planning schedules…sit back, relax and enjoy! There are age appropriate children’s programs, allowing adults time to sit by the pool or visit the spa.
Do you have a group? Family, church, alumni, museum, and special interest groups come together on cruises. Looking for a fund raiser for your organization, have you thought about a cruise? Are you looking for a new place for a business meeting? Many ships have special areas for meetings, including equipment for presentations. Meals and entertainment are included and at the end of the day relax at a private cocktail party. Imagine all the possibilities…
Do you want to go on a cruise, but don’t have a roommate, or you want your own stateroom, but don’t want to pay the high single supplement…there is good news! Some of the newer ships have been built with staterooms for singles, eliminating the high cost of traveling. If river cruising is on your wish list you will be happy to hear some of the river boat companies have waved the single supplement on many of their cruises.
If you are looking for the highest level of service and pampering, this is the way to go. Passengers on luxury ships enjoy all-inclusive service including both alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages, gratuities and on some ships all shore excursions. They offer special lecturers and enrichment programs. The ships also offer a special events for their guests while in port. Staterooms are usually suite style with the highest quality of bedding and staff to guest ratio almost 1 to 1. So, if you are looking for an intimate luxury sailing experience to interesting and exotic destinations…your stateroom is ready! Some of the choices in this market include; Silvereas, Seabourn, Regent Seven Seas, Crystal Cruises and Sea Dream Yachts Club.
Small Ship Expedition Cruising
Do you dream of traveling to unspoiled destinations, nature untouched? Do you dream of visiting the wonders of the world in inaccessible places? Do you imagine yourself sailing down the Amazon or the unique Norwegian coast? Or maybe exploring remote areas of Alaska by Zodiac, or are you off to the Polar Region to visit the Polar Bears? Or maybe it’s the Galapagos Islands with their giant tortoises, prehistoric marine iguanas and tiny penguins you dream of.
If you want to enjoy a once in a life time adventure, be in touch with the local culture, while traveling with experts in the area …then expedition cruising is for you. Some of the cruises in this market offering experiences to remember for a life time are; Lindblad Expedition, National Geographic, Quark Expeditions, Aqua Expeditions, U-cruises Adventures and Hurtigruten.
Lindblad Expeditions ship, National Geographic Sea Lion with 62 guests.Photo: Michael S Noland
Blue Ice in Le Cone Bay, Tongass National Forest, Alaska, on Zodiac. Photo: Ralph Lee Hopkins
Baja California. Aboard the National Geographic Sea Bird with 62 guests aboard. Photo: Sven-Olof Lindblad
Windstar Cruises has sailing yachts with fewer then 300 guests aboard and a Watersports Platform for swimming and kayaking. Star Clippers’ cruise ship Royal Clipper with 227 guests is the largest sailing ship in the world with 5 Masts and 42 Sails.
Traditional Cruise Ships
Larger ships with many on board activities, have something for all ages and are popular with families. Royal Caribbean, Princess, Holland America Lines, Celebrity Cruise, and Disney Cruise Lines have Las Vegas type shows, gambling, spas, rock climbing walls, cooking classes, scuba classes, and much more.
River cruising has become the fast growing segment of cruising and seems to be on most people’s wish list! There are River Boats sailing in all parts of the world, including, Asia, Africa, Vietnam and Cambodia, India and here in the US the market is growing. But the most popular destination is Europe with the Rhine and Danube rivers the most popular destinations. Why are river boats so popular? You unpack once, fewer guests so no long lines, dock in the heart of town and focus on culture and history of the area. The cost usually includes shore excursions and wine and beer with lunch and dinner.
All river boats are not the same! In Europe the boats have certain size restrictions, they have to fit under the bridge and through the locks. A few of the things to look for and think about is; how many people are on the boat, what is the ratio of guest to staff and do you have a choice of shore excursions. Some boats have bicycles for the guest to use, some have a spa and gym. What is the size of your room, do you have a balcony – and what kind of balcony. Just a few of the things to consider before booking your river cruises. Let me help you navigate all the choices!
A few of the boats cruising Europe and other destinations; AMA Waterways, Uniworld, Viking River Cruises, Tauck, and Crystal.
Fun: On and Off the Ship
On a cruise you often find a towel sculpture of an animal when you return to your stateroom after dinner…not this night! I loved the Windstar Star Breeze.
Shore excursion – Shopping with the Windstar Star Breeze’s executive chef at a local market on Promenade de la Croisette in Cannes, Provence. The Star Breeze features yacht-style sailing with a only 121 passengers per cruise. (Photos: Linda Tatten, CTC)
Cruise Food and Dining: Spanish night preparations (Photos: Linda Tatten, CTC)
Dining al fresco on a ship’s deck
Lunch at the Veranda, looking out at Port Vendres, FrancePhoto: Linda Tatten, CTC
Lunch at Le Grill on the Paul Gauguin
Imagine cruising into the sunset!