A yacht cruise offers the same experience of cruising in style and luxury and so much more. Most first-time and seasoned travelers however, think that the only way to explore the world’s oceans and seas is through a cruise ship. While this may be the most common way to travel around the world by water, cruising with a yacht is just as desirable.
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Although both vessels are on the water, it’s the pampering and personal VIP treatment that sets yacht cruising apart from ship cruising. Luxury yachts are smaller and lighter than cruise liners, with lengths ranging from about 20 feet to lengths of over 200feet. Due to its size, luxury yachts take lesser people onboard. It is even possible to charter a yacht for a private cruising with family and friends. Whether it’s a mega yacht or a private yacht charter, travelers can be sure of a personalized service from the crew.
Luxury Amenities and Accommodations
Depending on its size, yachts could have accommodations for 2 or for 130 guests. Cabins are typically smaller than regular hotel rooms, but they are comfortable and well-furnished. Baths and showers, closets, tables, and telephone-passengers will find all the needed amenities to make their cabins their home on the sea.
Five-star gourmet and good food await passengers with their dining in a yacht cruise. Expect an onboard chef to prepare all the delectable cuisine that passengers will feast on during their trip. Private charters can have the extra special privilege of having the menu planned according to their liking.
After dinner, passengers can have drinks in the lounge and enjoy the entertainment prepared for them with their traveling companions. This is an excellent time to mingle and get to know the other passengers, especially when traveling with a larger group. By the time the trip is over, most passengers in a yacht cruise would have known each other by their names because of the number of guests and frequency of interaction, in contrast to ship liners.
When not anticipating a port stop or when not touring onshore, passengers can enjoy the luxurious amenities that the yacht has onboard. Survey the azure sea while enjoying a drink on the sundeck; take a dip in the jacuzzi or swimming pool; run a few kilometers on the treadmill or lift some weights in the gym; and have a relaxing time in the spa.
Casual and comfortable clothing, bathing suits, hats, and sunglasses are the rule in yacht cruises. Evening wear is optional for those who would want to dress up for dinner or when planning to have dinner in an excellent dinner on shore.
A yacht cruise can take passengers to ports rarely visited by large cruise ships and virtually any destination accessible by water. The Mediterranean, Caribbean, Bahamas, North and Central America, Northern Europe, Africa, Arabia, and Asia are just a few of the beautiful countries and landscapes passengers can explore and enjoy through a yacht cruise.
On Shore Activities
Passengers have the freedom to do what they want when in port. Some of the passengers’ favorite activities include water-skiing, wave running, snorkeling, scuba diving, sunbathing and lounging on the beach, fishing, kayaking, windsurfing, sailing, and touring. Passengers can take the tours arranged by the yacht cruises or take their own tours. Most port attractions are located within short distances from the harbor, making it easy for cruise passengers to enjoy the scenes in security and comfort.
While private chartered luxury yachts often sail the rich and famous, there is always a yacht cruise fit for everybody. The prices are basically scaled on the amenities-the rates increase as the size and amenities increase.
Even so, yacht cruises are the best vacation value. Travelers will know how much the
vacation will cost all in all even before they leave as the fare includes the state rooms, all meals, onboard activities and entertainment, and the transportation from port to port. Travelers would only have extra expenses on optional shore excursions, shopping, and personal services such as a massage.
It is said that a yacht cruise is like no vacation on earth. With the constantly changing landscape, VIP services, and the liberating feeling of being out in the sea, it seems that this adage is most certainly true.
The Spring Break Cruise Experience
Winter is over, the snow has melted, and spring is coming. Goodbye to long dark weather and hello to warm sunny days! For students, this means a break from classes, exams, term papers, and homework. It’s spring break! What better way to spend this week-long holiday than to take a spring break cruise and party on multiple beaches, see new places, and meet other young cruise travelers.
Most students would think that cruises are just for the elderly, honeymooners, and families with young kids. Whilst many cruises are particularly designed for these groups, many ship companies also offer cruise vacations that are tailor-fitted for young adults and students looking to have a vacation away from schoolwork with fun parties and lots of sun.
The Ease of a Cruise
Most students would pick the usual spring break hot spots to visit like Daytona Beach, South Beach, Panama City Beach, or Cancun in Mexico. All these cities have lively nightlives, long stretch of beaches, and sunny weather, but they are often overdone and overcrowded with other spring break vacationers. A spring break cruise provides all of these and a whole lot more.
Cruises are the best vacation value. Every expense in a trip are paid in a single installment before the passengers leave the dock. This includes the cabins, lunches and dinners, onboard entertainment and activities, and of course, transportation from port to port. Passengers would only have additional expenses on shopping, personal services like a massage, and optional tours.
Taking a spring break cruise also saves time in planning for the itinerary, booking for hotels, and scheduling for flights. Everything is well provided for, even the transportation in shore excursions. All passengers have to do is show up for a totally carefree getaway.
Cruising is also a great way to experience and learn about different cultures without the research. Even though students are there to enjoy the cultural flare of different countries, they take home with them pieces of history, geography, or even ideals that could contribute in their view of the world.
There are certain rules and policies that have to be considered before going on a spring break cruise. Most cruise lines have strict policies governing the age requirement for sailing without a chaperone, for drinking, and for gambling onboard. Students should check on individual cruise lines for their updated policies and other details before making a reservation.
Most cruise lines have strict policies regarding age eligibility for cruising, ranging from Carnival’s requirement that all passengers in a cabin must be 21 or older, Celebrity’s rule that at least one passenger in a cabin should be 21 or older, and Disney’s more relaxed policy of allowing a passenger below 18 to stay in a room with someone 21 or older.
Most exceptions are made for underage married couples. They would be allowed to travel alone for as long they are both 18 and they have proof of their marriage. Young couples should check with the cruise liner regarding this policy before boarding.
The legal drinking age for all alcoholic beverages on all ships is 21. An exception may be ships that cater spring break cruises to international seas. For instance, Costa Cruises’ minimum drinking age is 21 for any cruise leaving from the US, but the drinking age is 18 on any ship leaving from a non-US port.
Policies for onboard gambling vary from ship to ship. Carnival, Royal Caribbean, Holland America, and NCL have set their age restriction from 18 and up, while Princess and Celebrity allow gaming for passengers aged 21. Students should take time to read their ship’s policies on gambling because prizes and winnings may not be awarded to underage guests.
Spring Break Destinations
The best spring break cruise destinations are those that are close to the US Port to allow less travel time to reach. In addition, there are destinations that are best known for their liberal culture and exotic nightlife that appeals to young cruise travelers. These areas include The Bahamas, Aruba, Key West, Cozumel, Barbados, Jamaica, and the Turks and Caicos Islands.
Students don’t have to wait to be in port to start enjoying their vacation. Cruise ships, particularly the newest and largest ships afloat, offer myriad onboard activities. Some of these ships offer exciting amenities, such as mini golf courses, rock climbing walls, surf simulators, shopping malls, and sports facilities for basketball, volleyball, and other sports. Multiple dining options, bars and lounges, fitness centers, and spas are also part of onboard entertainment.
A short weekend cruise would typically cost as little as $150 per passenger. However, a longer and a more elaborate cruise might cost as much as $2000. Students should carefully investigate their spring break cruise options in order to find the best that fits their budget.
Spring breaks are meant to be fun, liberating, and exciting-and the open seas offer just that. Step into a spring break cruise and sail away the stress of school and return fresh and rejuvenated, ready for the work ahead.
The Gay Cruise Experience
A vacation is supposed to be a time for relaxation and a chance to get away from the stresses of reality. For couples, there is the added bonus of getting to know more about each other and be especially close to one another. However, for gay and lesbian couples, these affectionate gestures may not be as easy, particularly for those who prefer not to be under the prying eyes of other people. A gay cruise may just be the best vacation option for gay and lesbian couples yet.
Going Away on a Gay Cruise
Everybody goes away on vacation to relax, have a good time, indulge, and escape the realities of everyday life. A gay cruise attends to these desires with the same elements as vacations for straight people-first-rate accommodations, beautiful beaches, and exotic destinations. However, there’s a whole lot more than the vacation itself that attracts gay single and couples to embark on a gay cruise.
The most compelling of these reasons is the camaraderie that is easily formed and felt in gay cruises. There is an almost mystical experience in being around hundreds of other gay people that shares the same spirit, feelings, and aspirations. It is an indescribable feeling that is incomparable with any straight or mainstreamed vacation.
Many gay people also join gay cruises for the customized entertainment and activities featured in a gay cruise. Activities like pool games, dancing, cabaret entertainment, costume parties, and even bingo all have their certain flair unique to gay-specific activities.
Joining a gay cruise is also an excellent way to make new friends and meet new people. Choosing a gay vacation guarantees that everybody has at least one thing in common. It is not even unusual for some people to find a romantic partner in a gay cruise.
A gay cruise can also provide gay people the liberation that they could not ordinarily feel in their straight environment. Vacationing in a place surrounded by hundreds of like-minded people can be a liberating and amiable experience.
Types of Gay Cruise
Gay cruises are one of the most popular and most visible gay vacations, which cover a wide range of travel opportunities. Whether a traveler wants to play just a bit gay or all out gay, there’s a variety of gay cruise options to choose from.
For people who prefer to party and be around the company of an all-gay crowd, then they will find that the gay environment cruise will fit them to a tee. In a gay environment cruise, a tour company charters an entire cruise ship to create an exclusive all-gay/lesbian environment. These types of cruises have customized entertainment such as cabaret performances and activities like dancing and masquerade parties.
An organized gay group on a mainstreamed cruise may be ideal for gay singles or couples who don’t mind being afloat with other straight passengers. These types of cruises may set out a part of the ship for their own dining area, their own host, entertainment, and programming.
Gay singles and couples also have the option of going onboard a mainstream cruise where they have the chance of meeting like-minded people onboard. The majority of large mainstream cruises feature special parties for their gay and lesbian guests, often referred to as “Friends Of Dorothy” meet-and-greets.
There is also a cruise specially organized for gay families. R Family Vacations, the company that pioneered these gay family-oriented cruises, join children, single parents, gay parents, grandparents, and friends in mainstream cruises in groups of 300 or 400. The activities are designed for family bonding. The evening entertainment like Broadway shows however is mainly for the adults.
What to Expect in a Gay Cruise
Some people would describe their first gay cruise much like their first experience in a gay parade or their first time in a gay bar-the sheer pleasure and comfort of escaping a heterosexual environment is absolutely liberating.
Gay travelers can expect giddy, silly, and extroverted aspects in the cruise, such as costume parties and bingo with a gay twist, as well as relaxed, refined and some serious aspects of the gay cruise, such as financial planning seminars, lounging by the pool, and romantic dinners for two. Guests can participate in all of the activities or simply enjoy the trip by the pool or on the beach.
Casual clothes, swimsuit, hat, and sun glasses are the norm when dressing up for a cruise. Although of course, there are a couple of wardrobe opportunities, such as theme nights and parties guests would want to prepare for.
More than the luxury and the comfort, many gay singles and couples choose to embark on a gay cruise for the comfort and freedom it affords. For most of them, a gay cruise is a magical experience where even for just a few nights, the entire world turns into gay and they are fully free to be themselves, not caring about the pressures of the straight world.
Traveling for Cheap: 4 Budget Cruise Options
Travelling cheap is the practical way to see and experience the world without compromising comfort and convenience. There are a number of budget cruise options to make your cruise vacation a memorable and enjoyable one.
Here are some helpful ways to go on a budget cruise:
Consider your interests
There are good selections of cruises to suit your interest. The Mediterranean is the best place for art and history enthusiasts. Meanwhile, fine sand and endless sunshine awaits you in Caribbean cruises. For the explorer in you, the Arctic or the Antarctic is the best place to be and for a more exotic locale, there are Asian and African cruises available. It is essential to consider your interests and preferences from sightseeing to food to match your budget, itinerary and preferences for your cruise vacation.
Familiarize yourself with cruising
When deciding to go onboard your cruise vacation, it is important to familiarize yourself with the variety of cruise vacations and destinations available. Have those fingers clicking the Internet to search and find all about cruise holidays. A number of information pertaining to the cruise lines are readily available, like:
Location and itinerary of each cruise which can range from a 7-day Caribbean cruise or a 14 or 21 day Arctic or Antarctic exploration or a Hawaiian cruise or a river cruise along the historic riverbanks of Europe.
Cruise lines vary with its clientele. The Cunard cruise line, for example, is geared towards the classic cruise experience, while the Disney cruise line is ideal for families.
Pricing, discounts and promotional fares
Inclusion of shore excursions, airport and port transfers
Cruise’s onboard activities and menus
Diligently researching on these matters will enable you to make the right decision in planning your cruise.
Research for the best cruise fares
Going on a cruise with a limited budget is not as complicated as it appears to be. Given your budgetary constraint, it is equally important to research cruise fares and the inclusion of other fees in your cruise vacation. The Internet is the convenient place to search the following:
Pricing, promotional fares and rates, group and family discounts. Most cruise lines and travel agents offer packages and discounts to cruise ship passengers depending on the season of the planned vacation. Oftentimes, discounts are given to pre-booking reservations.
Inquire about the additional shore excursions and other travel arrangements which may include airfare and shuttles. It is best to get a good deal for these to avoid any hassle. Ask if the fare is inclusive of these to make sure that the money you pay for the cruise is money well spent.
Plan in Advance
Planning your cruise in advance saves you time and money. Planning your stress free cruise means being particular from cruise line bookings and travel itinerary to packing the right clothes, to first aid kits, and having your proper documents like IDs and passports. These avoid further inconvenience on your part.
A well-planned cruise vacation leaves you stress free and all you have to do is relax and enjoy the scenery and the company you’re with.
8 Perks of a Disney Cruise
Cruise ship vacation aboard the Disney Cruise is ideal for family. A Disney Cruise is always fun, fascinating and nostalgic. It is the perfect time for family bonding, activities and it brings back many happy childhood memories to the parents especially with Mickey, Donald, Goofy, Cinderella and Snow White onboard.
Here are some perks of a Disney Cruise:
Quality family time
Disney is always synonymous to family. Aboard the Disney Cruise, parents and children will spend days of quality family time with the cruise’s line up of fun-filled activities. Spending time with the family is probably the most rewarding perks of the cruise. It gives the family the chance to get to know each other better and at the same time there are also opportunities for the children to meet other children onboard.
It bridges the generation gap
Taking a Disney cruise vacation bridges the generation gap between parents and their children. The common denominator is the loveable Disney characters where both parents and children can relate to.
World class entertainment
Disney is renowned for its magnificent productions and captivating stories. The following are sure to win the hearts of travelers:
The ala Broadway production of the well love Disney tales, complete with everybody’s favorite song and dance numbers, set amidst the elegantly furnished Disney Theater.
The cozy theater also hosts movie screenings of the beloved Disney movies throughout the years.
Meet and greet Disney characters at designated times during the cruise. This is the chance for everybody to hug, take pictures and even ask for an autograph of your favorite Disney character.
The cruise also offers deck parties for the whole family to enjoy. Everybody can sing and dance to the themed parties. After the show, there is a spectacular display of fireworks which will leave you and the kids awestruck.
Activities for children
At Disney Cruise, children aboard the ship are classified according to their age groups and have their own set of facilities and activities under the help of the Disney counselors. This will also help the parents to enjoy the cruise’s for adult only facilities like: salon, lounges and nightclubs.
Every member of the family is sure to be delighted with the hearty meals served in the ship. Dining options vary from the traditional Main dining to the alfresco dining at the designated deck. Adults can enjoy a romantic dinner in the ship’s adult exclusive dining. Cruise ship passengers are sure to enjoy the cruise’s Rotational Dining experience. This allows the guests to literally and figuratively rotate through the ship’s 3 varied restaurants coupled with personalized servers to help you with each meal.
The ship’s staterooms are custom made for families. It is spacious to accommodate the whole family and their luggage. Aside from these, the rooms offer breathtaking views and are fully equipped with the amenities of a hotel.
Disney cruise has amazing adventures which will surely delight adults and kids. Its offshore excursion includes a fun-filled day at Disney’s exclusive Castaway Cay. The picturesque paradise is available to Bahamian and Caribbean cruises. There are a number of activities to be enjoyed ranging from water sports in the beach to nature hikes to glass bottom boat tours. The adults’ only beach has massages, yoga class and a bar. There is an open air barbeque dining and a wonderful gift shop for your souvenir.
These perks of a Disney Cruise is truly an enticing one, which will make you book for its next cruise and create more happy moments with your family.
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