Cruising is certainly the fastest growing part of the travel industry and the variety of ‘small ship cruising’ product grows every day. At Discover Travel we define small ship as anything smaller than 500 passengers.
There are a few luxury cruiselines that fall into this category including Windstar Cruises, Star Clippers, and Seabourn Yachts.
SUPER YACHTS – These typically have 40 – 50 guests and offer a nice alternative to the larger cruise ship. Popular itineraries include Croatia, the Cyclades and the Ionian Islands in Europe. Expect it to be very relaxed onboard with swimming/playing from the boat a favourite activity. They typically visit the smaller ports so are great for travellers looking to get off the beaten track.
TRADITIONAL SAILING YACHT – Typically only around 20 – 40 guests, in Turkey these are known as a Gulet, in Greece they are a Caique and in Croatia an Old Timer. This style of cruising is very relaxed with stops at lovely swimming spots and beaches. Usually only half board is offered as you would dine at your leisure on shore – a great option for independent travellers. These boats are also used for our Bike & Sail itineraries in Croatia, Greece and Turkey.
SMALL SHIPS – We do have a great range of interesting itineraries on small ships in the 50 – 300 passengers range. Favourite destinations for small ship cruising are the Mediterranean, the Norwegian Fjords, Scotland, Alaska, the Galapagos and closer to home we have Tahiti and the Kimberley’s. There are also fascinating itineraries in Costa Rica, Cuba and Japan. For more off the beaten path destinations check out our Expedition Cruising section.
Alaska is a magnificent destination and without doubt the best way to see the delights of the Inside Passage is on a small ship. You get up close and personal with the wildlife and the scenery.
The Norwegian Fjords are a relatively new destination for kiwis, but the magnificent scenery of cascading waterfalls, glaciers, narrow gorges and picture-book villages will delight you.