Still undecided where to go on your cruise ship holiday? It’s hardly surprising when there are so many fantastic destinations on offer. To help you narrow down your list, here are our top five glamorous destinations to see by sea.
#1 Hong Kong
Sail into the wondrous colours and lights of Hong Kong’s harbour and you enter a magical mix of cultural Chinese heritage and past British colonial influence. Be prepared to immerse yourself in the heady mix of sights, sounds, tastes and scents of Hong Kong’s traditional open-air markets, where you can sample fragrant teas and exquisite local cuisine, like dim sum or congee. For an authentic experience of Chinese life, wander the Yuen Po Street Bird Garden, the home of numerous wooden cages containing prized Chinese songbirds or hike along one of the many stunning scenic routes, like the path to Lantau Island (The Wisdom Path).
How to get there: Royal Caribbean’s Legend of the Seas offers an 18-night cruise to Hong Kong – it’s just one of many spectacular cruise ship holidays on offer.
#2 South Pacific Islands
Is your imagination awakened by the thought of idyllic beaches, stunning scenery and authentic cultural experiences? Then you should be exploring the tens of thousands of tiny islands, atolls and islets scattered across the South Pacific. A tropical paradise of crystal-blue waters and virgin white-sand beaches is calling out to you.
The Melanesia islands, closest to Australia, comprise Fiji, New Caledonia, Vanuatu and Solomon Islands. And slightly further afield you’ll find the Polynesian islands of Samoa, Tonga, Cook Islands, Easter Islands and more. Each island has its own special character but you are guaranteed a warm welcome wherever you go.
How to get there: Choose cruises with Carnival, P&O Cruises, Princess Cruises, Royal Caribbean or Holland America Line departing year-round from a range of Australian ports.
Bangkok is a place where gilded spired temples and famed buildings like the Grand Palace sit alongside everyday markets and the neon-lit nightclub scene. Whether you mingle with market traders in the food cart lined streets or take a long-tailed taxi boat along the royal river – you’ll love your Thai experience.
Thailand is a place of never-ending contrasts. One moment you are sipping Martini cocktails in the comfort of your high-class hotel and the next you’ll be in the Bangkok street market, sampling the amazing sweet, sour, spicy and salty flavours of Thai food. It’s no wonder Bangkok is a now a popular destination on many cruises to Asia.
How to get there: P&O Cruises now offers cruise ship holidays to Bangkok departing from Australia.
Located on the main Japanese island of Honshu, Osaka is the destination from late March through to early April. Why? To see the world-renowned Japanese cherry tree blossom displays, of course!
Aside from the cherry blossoms, Osaka is famously known as the Nations Kitchen. This once capital of Japan is a glamorous destination where you can enjoy exquisite and traditional Japanese food and appreciate new dining experiences like the downtown tachinomi or standing bar dining.
How to get there: Princess Cruises and Cunard visit Osaka as part of their scheduled cruises.
#5 Bay of Islands, New Zealand
The Bay of Islands is one of New Zealand’s most attractive cruise destinations. Celebrated for its stunning scenery, the Bay of Islands comprises 144 untouched islands as well as a number of local towns, each with a distinct culture and lifestyle. The Bay of Islands promises a myriad of beautiful coves amid clear turquoise or deep blue waters. And culture buffs will love discovering where the early European settlers made first contact with the local Maori and ultimately signed New Zealand’s Treaty of Waitangi.
How to get there: Lots of cruise lines, including Azamara Club Cruises, make the Bay of Islands one of their special disembarkation spots.
Check out details of these and many more glamorous new cruise ship holidays on our website.