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Summer 2021 Cruises: MSC Cruises Announces Multiple Ships To Restart In Europe

MSC Virtuosa
MSC Virtuosa

MSC Cruises recently announced new and updated itineraries in the Mediterranean and across Europe for this coming summer, offering guests plenty of options for the upcoming holiday season. The ships offering these now fully confirmed itineraries will operate under the same industry-leading health and safety protocol that has been safely protecting over 60,000 MSC Cruises guests sailing on the line’s ships in the Mediterranean since August 2020.

The following is a complete list of MSC Cruises confirmed itineraries now available for booking for this summer.

Three ships in the West Mediterranean, calling Italy and Malta   

MSC Grandiosa will initially extend her current 7-night itinerary, calling at the Italian ports of Genoa, Civitavecchia for Rome, Naples, Palermo as well as Valletta, Malta. The Spanish ports of Valencia and Barcelona will be added to the ship’s current itinerary as soon as these destinations confirm their availability.

MSC Seaside will commence sailing on May 1 from Genoa calling at the newly introduced ports of Siracusa in Sicily and Taranto in Puglia, as well as Civitavecchia for Rome and Valetta in Malta. The ship’s itinerary will then be enriched with calls to the French port of Marseille as soon as its availability is confirmed.

In addition to the range of protected excursions developed for MSC Seaside’s itinerary, MSC Cruises will introduce a special private beach experience in Taranto, exclusively for the ship’s guests. Guests will be able to relax in true summer fashion on the sandy beach next to the clear waters of the Ionian Sea.

MSC Seashore
MSC Seashore

MSC Seashore will join the MSC Cruises fleet at the end of July to become its new flagship, and from August 1 until October 31, offer 7-night cruises calling the Italian ports of Genoa, Naples and Messina, as well as Valletta in Malta, Barcelona in Spain and Marseille in France. After her season in the Mediterranean, MSC Seashore will then arrive to Miami in November 2021 to begin sailing The Bahamas and Caribbean, including stops at MSC Cruises’ private Bahamian destination, Ocean Cay MSC Marine Reserve.

Three ships in the East Mediterranean, calling Italy, Greece, Croatia and Montenegro

MSC Cruises will deploy three ships in this popular region for the upcoming summer season offering a range of itineraries in the East Mediterranean, calling at some of the most beautiful Greek Islands, Kotor in Montenegro as well as the vibrant ports of Dubrovnik and Split in Croatia. Ports of embarkation include Trieste, Venice and Bari in Italy as well as Piraeus for Athens in Greece.

MSC Orchestra will now depart on June 5 with embarkation in the Italian ports of Venice on Saturdays, Bari on Sundays, calling at the Greek Islands of Corfu, Mykonos as well as Dubrovnik in Croatia.

MSC Splendida will commence sailing from June 12 with embarkation in Trieste, Italy on Saturdays and in Bari on Tuesdays, calling at Dubrovnik in Croatia, Corfu in Greece and Kotor in Montenegro.

Rounding out the offering in the East Mediterranean is MSC Magnifica from June 20 offering embarkation in the Italian ports of Venice on Sundays, Bari on Mondays and Piraeus for Athens on Wednesdays and calling at the Greek Island of Mykonos and Split, Croatia.

Cruises across Northern Europe

UK Domestic Cruises

From May 20, the line’s flagship MSC Virtuosa will perform her inaugural season in the UK and offer mini cruises from Southampton calling at Portland in Dorset on the Jurassic coast. From June 12, she will operate 7-night cruises from Southampton with embarkation in Liverpool, Greenock for Glasgow and also calling at Portland and Belfast in Northern Ireland. These cruises are designed for British residents only. The sailings are open to vaccinated and non-vaccinated guests and all guests will be tested prior to embarkation.

Germany, Northern Europe

In Germany, considering the current uncertainty regarding the timing for the reopening of local ports, MSC Cruises ships must delay the start of their summer season out of the country’s ports until June 15.

At the same time, MSC Cruises today announced that MSC Seaview will homeport in Kiel, Germany starting on June 19, replacing MSC Virtuosa.

Additionally, MSC Preziosa is planned to depart on June 21 from Hamburg, Germany and MSC Musica on June 20 from Warnemunde, Germany, if the German ports are open.

The three ships are planned to serve 7-night and longer sailings with itineraries either to the Norwegian fjords or the Baltic capitals, as per their current schedule.

Other summer 2021 affected programs

MSC Cruises also confirmed the cancellation of its Caribbean sailings from ports in the USA up to and including June 30, 2021. Guests who are impacted by any of the changes will be contacted by their travel advisor or MSC Cruises.

For more information on MSC Cruises health and safety measures on board visit https://www.msccruisesusa.com/health-and-safety

AmaWaterways Adds Second 46-Night River Cruise As Demand Grows

Citing an overwhelming response to the launch of its first-ever Seven River Journey Through Europe,  AmaWaterways recently announced a second Seven River Journey – Spring. This new 45-night curated itinerary offers guests extra time to discover the springtime floral splendor of Netherlands and Belgium along with the opportunity to experience the one-of-a-kind AmaMagna sailing the upper and lower Danube during the final two weeks of the trip. Sailing on three ships, the Seven River Journey – Spring will take guests through 14 beautiful countries, with unparalleled experiences in each destination. The journey will depart April 20, 2023 from Avignon, France onboard the award-winning AmaKristina and end on June 4, 2023 in Giurgiu, Romania with rates starting at $24,999 per guest*.

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Suite Cat. SA – Room #313 – Deck 3 Starboard aboard AmaMagna – Amawaterways

“Our first Seven River Journey – Summer received such a positive response that I am overjoyed to provide our guests yet another incredible extended journey designed to fully immerse them in European culture and create memories that will last a lifetime,” said Kristin Karst, executive vice president and co-founder of AmaWaterways. “Having one Cruise Manager take care of guests throughout this entire journey ensures a seamless transition from one ship to the other and we have many unique experiences and onboard amenities planned to further enhance the immersive nature of this 45-night journey.”

The awe-inspiring spring journey through Europe will set sail from Avignon, France cruising the Rhône River to Lyon, the gastronomy capital of France. Guests will transfer over to Basel, Switzerland where AmaCerto awaits to explore the Dutch Waterways (Scheldt and Maas rivers) before enjoying the castle studded Rhine and a scenic trip along Moselle, Main and Main Danube Canal. Arriving in Vilshofen, Germany, guests will embark on the last two legs of this epic journey on board AmaMagna, sailing through majestic capitals and small villages along the upper and lower Danube. With the growing interest in less-traveled destinations, AmaWaterways is particularly excited to showcase the lower Danube, taking guests through the enchanting lands of Bulgaria and Romania. Travelers will experience the centuries-old history of Celtic fortifications, medieval towns and grand cities while sailing through the beautiful landscapes of eastern Europe filled with diverse flavors, sights and sounds.

The pioneering AmaMagna adds another level of luxury with more suite categories, unique experiences and space for guests who book the new Seven River Journey — Spring. At twice the width of regular river cruise ships, AmaMagna is one of the most innovative ships in the industry with four unique restaurants, an onboard cinema, expansive Zen Wellness studio, Sun Deck with a sky bar, incredibly spacious staterooms and suites (pictured right), and more. Guests will round out their extended journey with an amplified experience of unparalleled luxury and comfort.

AmaWaterways first-ever Seven River Journey Through Europe was announced at the beginning of March. The June departure, for a limited 144 guests, garnered international attention, quickly filling with guests eager to participate. Based on the incredible response received from travel advisor partners and guests for the first 46-night journey, the team at AmaWaterways built a second spring itinerary to meet the rising demand for longer, more immersive travel experiences.  The pioneering luxury river cruise line also offers other appealing combination cruises for guests looking to customize an extended river voyage through Europe.

Travelers who wish to be a part of this journey full of unique experiences that only AmaWaterways can deliver are invited to contact their travel advisor or visit AmaWaterways.com/SevenRiverJourney for complete itinerary details.

Cunard Announces 2022 Event Voyages

Cunard's Flagship Queen Mary 2

Music, Literature, Theatre and new Art & Design themed Transatlantic Crossing take Centre Stage on flagship Queen Mary 2, and sister ship Queen Elizabeth

Cunard recently announced its 2022 line-up of Event Voyages, offering a rich and compelling variety of themes on board flagship liner Queen Mary 2 and Queen Elizabeth. Welcoming back guest favorites including the Literature Festival at Sea in partnership with Cheltenham Literature FestivalThe Times and The Sunday Times; and much-loved Anthony Inglis and the UK National Symphony of Orchestra, Cunard also introduces the line’s first Art & Design Week, and Beatles and Beyond: Celebrating the Best of British. Also joining the roster is the highly anticipated London Theatre at Sea with the Olivier Awards.

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Maestro Anthony Inglis, conducting the UK’s National Symphony Orchestra on board Cunard’s flagship Queen Mary 2

Guests will enjoy an opportunity to meet and mingle with renowned authors, West End theatre stars, wax nostalgic with one the world’s top Beatles tribute bands, and learn insider views and latest trends with the line’s new Art & Design Week.

Every journey offers the opportunity to delve deeper into an existing passion or discover something new, with an enriching program of interactive workshops, masterclasses, performances, and thought provoking speakers and discussions with fellow guests, truly there is something for everyone on board.

“Cunard is excited to again offer an incredible array of Event Voyages in 2022, which have become an eagerly anticipated hallmark of Cunard’s on board experience,” said Jamie Paiko, vice president of Sales for Cunard North America. “From art and literature to music and design, our guests enjoy the luxury of time to more deeply delve into their passions, and appreciate the opportunity to meet notable luminaries form all over the world. Anticipation is high for the return of Event Voyage favorites, as well as those new to Cunard, and ones we hope will be equally revered in the future,” Paiko added.

Here’s some of what to expect:

15-22 May 2022, Queen Mary 2: London Theatre at Sea, with the Olivier Awards: This eastbound Transatlantic Crossing, created in partnership with Society of London Theatre, will showcase Olivier award-winning talent, both on and off the stage. This Event Voyage will feature spectacular performances and an illustrious line-up of guests in conversation about their careers, as well as talks on productions, how they are produced, and the theatres themselves

Highlights include a dazzling show with the stars in the Royal Court Theatre in a production looking back at the last 45 years of the Olivier Awards; an immersive workshop about the secrets and techniques of putting on a production; and dance classes lead by world class choreographers.

“In May 2022, we can’t wait to welcome guests on the London Theatre at Sea Event Voyage – a blend of performances, workshops, talks, dance classes and some special evening shows combine with an extraordinary array of on and off-stage talent to bring theatre to life. The world leading Queen Mary 2 transatlantic experience together with the very best of London theatre will result in an extraordinary week,” said Julian Bird, Chief Executive of the Society of London Theatre. Fares start from $1,399 per person.

8-17 May 2022Queen ElizabethBeatles and Beyond Queen Elizabeth will sail a nine-night roundtrip voyage departing Tokyo, tracing the shores of Japan and South Korea, and play host to Cunard’s first ever Beatles and Beyond: Celebrating the Best of British voyage.  Through music, film, tastings and demonstrations, the sailing will celebrate beloved aspects of British culture, culminating in a spectacular finale in the Royal Court Theatre by the superb Bootleg Beatles, the world’s leading Beatles tribute band. Fares start from $1,579 per person.

28 August-4 September 2022, Queen Mary 2: Art & Design Week:
Cunard’s first ever Art & Design Week is a one-of-a-kind experience that will take guests on a journey celebrating the best of design, past, present and future. Unmissable insights, expert-led masterclasses and special on board exhibitions promise to inspire the inner creative life of those who participate. In addition, guests will have an exclusive opportunity to hear from creative influencers at the forefront of design for Cunard’s newest ship. Fares start from 1,519 per person.

25 October-1 November 2022, Queen Mary 2: Anthony Inglis and the UK’s National Symphony Orchestra: A regular favorite in the Cunard calendar, the UK’s National Symphony Orchestra sets sail again with Maestro Anthony Inglis leading the ensemble in memorable orchestral performances in the Royal Court Theatre.  Guests will enjoy an evening of all-American music, including Gershwin’s “Rhapsody in Blue” after departing New York; and an evening celebrating the best of British music before arriving into Southampton. Charismatic conductor Inglis leads the audience, guest choir, soloists and orchestra in both concerts, as well as presenting another afternoon concert featuring Ravel’s “Bolero.”

“The annual Transatlantic Crossing by the National Symphony Orchestra and myself is keenly looked forward to by the musicians, as much as the guests on board the magnificent liner, Queen Mary 2,” said Anthony Inglis. “After the year we have all had, the orchestra and I have decided that we need a huge celebration in 2022, not only on behalf of the ship and her wonderful crew, but also the guests we have all missed. Therefore, I have planned some exciting surprises, which will be both hugely challenging and equally rewarding. We look forward to welcoming guests for a gigantic, seven-night party with an orchestra playing some favourite classical pieces of music, a choir made up of the guests, plus many other entertaining events as we cross the Atlantic Ocean from New York to Southampton.”
Fares start from $1,149 per person.

3-10 December 2022, Queen Mary 2: Literature Festival at Sea in partnership with Cheltenham Literature FestivalThe Times and The Sunday Times:  This extraordinary eastbound Transatlantic Crossing, crafted by the programming team of The Times and The Sunday Times Cheltenham Literature Festival, will offer book lovers the opportunity to join some of the best-loved authors, historians, poets, and critics, as well as journalists from The Times and The Sunday Times, to bring the spirit of the Festival to the voyage.

“We can’t wait to be back on the gorgeous Queen Mary 2 for the 2022 Literature Festival on Sea,” said Nicola Tuxworth, Head of Programming, The Times and The Sunday Times Cheltenham Literature Festival.  “There is something truly magical about sailing across a vast ocean on a beautiful, luxurious ship and listening to some of the world’s best writers sharing their stories. The first Festival at Sea was fabulous, an unforgettable seven days – and the 2022 program will be packed with fascinating events for everyone who loves books and brilliant journalism. Whether you want to hear your favorite author discussing their craft, get behind the day’s headlines with The Times, or even have a go at writing yourself, why not join us on board?”

This seven-day program of inspiring literary events celebrates the written word in all its variety with workshops, discussions, and Q&As focusing on literature, art, film, history and politics, all underpinned by the quality of delivery that is Cheltenham’s hallmark.

Guests will include bestselling authors Ian RankinMaggie O’FarrellCharles Cumming, Sathnam Sanghera, Mick Herron, and Simon Winchester; revered classicist Mary Beard; acclaimed journalists Damian Barr and Rachel Johnson; and Times Red Box Editor, Matt Chorley. More names to be announced.
Fares start from $1,049 per person.

For more information about Cunard, or to book a voyage, contact your Travel Consultant, call Cunard Line at 1-800-728-6273 or visit www.cunard.com.

Viking Announces Additional Sailings for Mississippi River Cruises

Viking Mississippi Rendering

Viking® has announced new 2024 sailings of its Mississippi River cruises are now on sale. The company’s first custom vessel, Viking Mississippi, will debut in August 2022 and will sail voyages on the Lower and Upper Mississippi River, between New Orleans and St. Paul. Viking’s first river cruises in the U.S. had been highly anticipated when they were officially announced in April 2020, and several sailings have already sold out through the 2023 sailing season. This strong demand has led Viking to open 2024 sailing dates sooner than originally expected.

“We are pleased with the continued response and support we have received from loyal guests and valued partners ahead of our new Mississippi River sailings,” said Torstein Hagen, Chairman of Viking. “As we begin to restart ocean operations this spring, we also look forward to a new chapter in 2022 when we begin sailing our first U.S. river voyages.”

Viking’s arrival to the Mississippi will represent a major commitment to tourism and economic development in many communities along the river, with the new cruises expected to bring more than 5,800 guests to the region in 2022 and 17,600+ during the first full sailing season in 2023. Currently scheduled ports of call on Viking’s new Mississippi River cruises comprise seven U.S. states: Louisiana (Baton Rouge, Darrow, New Orleans and St. Francisville); Mississippi (Natchez and Vicksburg); Tennessee (Memphis); Missouri (Hannibal, St. Louis); Iowa (Burlington, Dubuque and Davenport); Wisconsin (La Crosse); and Minnesota (Red Wing, St. Paul).

2022-2024 Viking Mississippi Voyages

  • America’s Great River  (15 days; New Orleans to St. Paul)—Experience nearly the entire length of the Mississippi River on this incredible journey from the Gulf of Mexico to the northernmost reaches of the U.S. Relax and enjoy the variety of scenery, foliage and wildlife on this leisurely voyage. Enjoy Southern charm and beautifully preserved homes in Natchez; retrace the steps of Civil Rights leaders in Memphis; ascend the Gateway Arch in St. Louis; and visit “The Norwegian Valley” in La Crosse. Multiple sailing dates are now available in June, July, September and October 2023 and 2024. Pricing starts at $10,999 per person with discounted airfare.
  • America’s Heartland  (8 days; St. Louis to St. Paul)—From pristine farms nestled in rolling terrain to steep bluff rising from tributaries dotted with wooded islands, the Upper Mississippi offers a rich tapestry of beauty upon every turn of the river. This journey introduces you to the unforgettable experience of the locks and dams that control the flow of the heartland rivers. Hear stories of settlers migrating west; learn about Lewis & Clark, Mark Twain, John Deere and the Amish and Norwegian migrations; experience the regional music like polka and Norwegian folk; and taste regional cuisine showcasing local beer, produce and Wisconsin cheese. Multiple sailing dates now available August – September 2023 and 2024. Pricing starts at $4,399 per person with discounted airfare.
  • Heart of the Delta  (8 days; New Orleans to Memphis)—This journey on the Lower Mississippi is infused with American history, culture and heritage. Tour the area where the migrating French and Acadians settled; immerse yourself in the culture and lessons from the American Civil Rights Movement; discover the music of the South—jazz, blues and gospel; and experience the life and food culture of the south, from Cajun and Creole to the famed “dry” Memphis BBQ. Multiple sailing dates available in November 2022; additional sailing dates are now available in January – June and October – December 2023 and 2024. Pricing starts at $4,399 per person with discounted airfare.
  • New Orleans & Southern Charm (8 days; New Orleans to New Orleans)—On this exploration of the Lower Mississippi, walk the historic estates and learn about Civil War history at notable sites. The roundtrip journey from New Orleans will allow guests to sample Cajun and Creole cuisine while taking in the sights and sounds of the French-influenced ports including Baton Rouge, Darrow and more in Louisiana and Mississippi. Multiple sailing dates available in November – December 2022; additional sailing dates are now available in January and December 2023 and 2024. Pricing starts at $3,999 per person with discounted airfare.
  • Mississippi Holiday Season (8 days; Memphis to New Orleans) – In December 2022, guests will discover the Lower Mississippi during a special holiday voyage. The eight-day journey will include exclusive Privileged Access to Graceland, decorated for the season; Cajun cuisine and shopping excursions; a visit to marvel the light displays and decorated historic homes in Natchez and Baton Rouge. Onboard festivities will include special celebratory regional dining and treats for the holidays. Multiple sailing dates available in December 2022 and pricing starts at $3,999 per person with discounted airfare.

Viking Mississippi

Hosting 386 guests in 193 all outside staterooms, the new state-of-the-art Viking Mississippi is inspired by Viking’s award-winning river and ocean ships and will feature clean Scandinavian design, as well as public spaces that are familiar to guests but that have been reimagined for Mississippi River voyages.

Purpose-built for the Mississippi and currently under construction in Louisiana, the five-deck ship’s cutting-edge design, expansive windows, and comfortable amenities will make it the largest and most modern cruise ship in the region. Highlights of the new ship include:

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Rendering of the Viking Mississippi – Aft Explorer’s Suite on Deck 3.

All Outside Staterooms

Guests can choose from an unparalleled seven spacious stateroom categories that range from 268 sq. ft to 1,024 sq. ft: Veranda, French Balcony, Deluxe Veranda, Penthouse Veranda, Penthouse Jr. Suite, Terrace Suite, and Explorer Suite. All staterooms feature a private veranda or French balcony, king-size bed with luxury linens, large flat-screen interactive TV, mini-bar, large glass-enclosed shower, heated bathroom floor, and 24-hour room service.

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Penthouse Veranda Suite aboard Viking Mississippi 

Viking Suites

Viking Mississippi will have some of the largest true suites on the river, with every suite featuring two rooms and a full-size veranda off the spacious sitting room. Guests in Penthouse Jr. Suites (400 sq. ft.) and Terrace Suites (425 sq. ft.) receive early stateroom access; expanded double-sink bathroom; mini-bar with alcoholic beverages, soft drinks, water and snacks replenished daily; welcome champagne; and laundry, pressing and shoe shine services. Guests in the expansive Explorer Suites (657 sq. ft. to 1,024 sq. ft) also receive a wraparound veranda and complimentary Silver Spirits Beverage Package.

Viking Mississippi Explorers’ Lounge
Viking Mississippi’s Explorers’ Lounge

Explorers’ Lounge & The Bow

Familiar to Viking’s ocean guests as one of the most popular onboard public spaces, Viking Mississippi will also feature an Explorers’ Lounge near the bow of the ship. The sun-filled, two-story Explorers’ Lounge has floor-to-ceiling windows that open to The Bow, a unique outdoor seating area at the front of the ship where guests can relax and enjoy ever-changing riverside views.

River Café

From American classics to Mamsen’s® Norwegian specialties, this indoor/outdoor dining venue on the top deck will offer alternative restaurant dining in a casual al fresco setting.

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The Aquavit Terrace aboard Viking Mississippi will feature a Barbecue.

Aquavit Terrace

A public space beloved by many of Viking’s ocean and river guests, Viking Mississippi will also feature a revolutionary Aquavit Terrace on the top deck, providing a casual dining space ideal for an American barbecue experience. Combined with the River Café, the Aquavit Terrace will provide the most al fresco dining on the Mississippi.

Viking Mississippi aft glass-backed pool
Viking Mississippi will feature a glass-backed pool experience located at the aft of the ship.

Sun Terrace with Infinity Plunge Pool

Similar to Viking’s ocean ships, Viking Mississippi will have a glass-backed pool experience at the aft, allowing guests to take a dip while fully surrounded by their destination.

Viking Mississippi Living room
The Viking Mississippi will feature a Living room area

The Living Room

Clean Scandinavian design paired with American influences, the Living Room on Deck 1 is designed for socializing, relaxing and entertainment. Nearby, the quiet corner of The Library, is a perfect place to discover a new book.

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The Restaurant will be located on Deck 1 and feature serve daily-changing menus.

The Restaurant

This main dining venue on Deck 1 will serve daily-changing menus featuring delicious regional cuisine and always available classics prepared with fresh, local ingredients.

Full 360-Degree Promenade Deck

Guests can stroll the entire ship outside on Deck 1, stretching their legs while viewing scenic landscape and regional wildlife.

Enrichment On Board and On Shore

Connecting guests to their destinations through authentic experiences is central to Viking creating “the thinking person’s cruise.” A focus on cultural enrichment onboard Viking Mississippi means that guests will enjoy Destination Performances that represent the most iconic music of the region—as well as Guest Lecturers that shed light on the region’s art, architecture, history, culture, the natural world and more.

And only The Viking Way® of exploration provides guests with itineraries that feature Privileged Access®, Local Life and Working World experiences, opening doors to places otherwise difficult to visit. On Viking’s Mississippi River itineraries, guests may choose to take a guided kayaking trip in the Louisiana bayou; visit a working farm in Quad Cities, or immerse themselves in Cajun culture during a Privileged Access excursion to the Rural Life Museum of Louisiana State University.

Sustainable Features

Solar panels, LED lighting, floor-to-ceiling windows that maximize natural light and an energy-efficient hybrid propulsion system will make Viking Mississippi the most environmentally friendly passenger ship on the Mississippi River.

Viking Inclusive Value

Every Mississippi River cruise fare includes everything guests need, with no surprises or hidden fees. Cruise fares include one complimentary shore excursion in each port of call, all onboard meals, and all port charges and government taxes. Guests also enjoy many complimentary amenities as part of their fare, including beer and wine with lunch and dinner service, lectures, alternative dining at no extra charge, self-service launderettes, 24-hour room service, and free Wi-Fi.

This announcement is the most recent milestone as Viking continues to expand its destination-focused travel offerings. The company recently took delivery of its seventh ocean ship, Viking Venus, which will officially be named on May 17, 2021 in the United Kingdom by her ceremonial godmother, Anne Diamond, the esteemed British journalist and broadcaster. In 2022, Viking will introduce its new expedition cruises, with the first 378-guest purpose-built expedition ship, Viking Octantis, launching in January 2022 for voyages to Antarctica and then North America’s Great Lakes. A second expedition vessel, Viking Polaris, will debut in August 2022, sailing to Antarctica and the Arctic.

For additional information, contact Viking at 1-855-8-VIKING (1-855-884-5464) or visit www.vikingcruises.com.

AIDA Cruises to Offer New Sailings in Greece from May to October

AIDA Cruises today announced it will offer new cruises in Greece from May 23, 2021, with 7-day cruises departing from Corfu and traveling through the Greek islands to Crete and Rhodes, as well as to Katakolon (Olympia) and Piraeus (Athens). Guests can also enjoy the amenities on board with multiple restaurants, bars, cultural activities and sports facilities, as well as organized shore excursions to explore the ports of call.

Greece is one of the most popular vacation destinations for German travelers. From May 14, 2021, the Mediterranean country will reopen for tourism from May 14. Its turquoise waters, fascinating culture, unique Greek flair and more make a vacation in this country so attractive.

Booking starts on 20 April 2021, with 23 dates between 23 May and 24 October 2021 to choose from. The Greek cruises can also be booked as 14-day trips.

In addition to the new offering in Greece, AIDAperla is sailing on seven-day voyages around the Canary Islands through June.

All cruises are carried out in compliance with AIDA’s enhanced health and safety protocols, as well as applicable laws and regulations.

With a testing strategy for guests and crew members already utilized on several cruises, it is AIDA’s top priority for all guests to safely enjoy their vacation. The enhanced health and safety protocols — tested by SGS Institut Fresenius and confirmed by the classification society DNV — includes a mandatory polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test for detecting viruses and bacteria before traveling, as well as regular health checks, social distancing and hygiene protocols, medical care including testing capacities on board and other measures.

With the “AIDA promise,” the cruise company offers guests more flexibility and security in planning. Generous booking options are part of AIDA’s commitment to its guests, ranging from small down payments to free rebooking. The “AIDA promise” is included in the travel price for new bookings up to May 31, 2021 and applies to departures up to March. 31, 2022.

Cruises in other destinations are unfortunately not possible at this time, with AIDA canceling the remaining voyages of April through May. More information and a detailed list of canceled cruises can be found at www.aida.de/reisehinweis.

AIDA Cruises wishes for  all guests to enjoy their planned AIDA vacation. Thanks to the travel offer on the Canary Islands and in Greece, AIDA can offer all affected guests attractive alternatives.

All AIDA cruises until summer 2022 can be booked at travel agencies, on the Internet at www.aida.de, and at the AIDA Customer Center.

Viking Takes Delivery Of Newest Ocean Ship, Viking Venus

Viking® has announced it took delivery of Viking Venus®the company’s newest ocean ship. The delivery ceremony took place this earlier today when the ship was presented at Fincantieri’s shipyard in Ancona, Italy. Viking Venus will now make her way to the United Kingdom, where she will be officially named on May 17, 2021 by her ceremonial godmother, Anne Diamond, the esteemed British journalist and broadcaster. The ship will then sail spring and summer departures of the England’s Scenic Shores itinerary.

“We are especially proud to welcome our newest ship to the fleet this year. Many of us have stayed close to home for months, so this is an important milestone as we begin to get back out into the world again,” said Torstein Hagen, Chairman of Viking. “We look forward to celebrating the naming of Viking Venus by her esteemed godmother, Anne Diamond—and to welcoming our UK guests back on board next month.”



For more than a year, Anne Diamond has been a key figure on Viking’s award-winning enrichment channel, Viking.TV (www.viking.tv). Viking.TV went live in March 2020, in the early stages of the pandemic, and was conceived as a way to build community, stay connected and share positive experiences while people are staying home, rather than traveling. Every Thursday since the launch of Viking.TV, Anne has interviewed a wide spectrum of significant figures with relationships to Viking.

Viking’s new Welcome Back voyages
Viking’s new Welcome Back voyages are available exclusively for vaccinated guests, in accordance with local entry rules in many of the destinations that will welcome Viking ships.

Welcome Back Voyages

This news follows Viking’s recent announcement that it is restarting operations with a collection of new itineraries in England, Bermuda and Iceland beginning in May 2021. All of Viking’s new Welcome Back voyages are available exclusively for vaccinated guests, in accordance with local entry rules in many of the destinations that will welcome Viking ships—and as a complement to the Viking Health & Safety Program, which was designed to protect guests and crew even while the COVID-19 vaccine rollout is still moving forward.

The Living Room
The Living Room

Viking Venus

Viking Venus is the newest ship in Viking’s award-winning ocean fleet of identical sister ships. Viking’s ocean ships have a gross tonnage of 47,800 tons, with 465 staterooms that can host 930 guests. Designed for discerning travelers with interests in history, art, music and cuisine, Chairman Torstein Hagen often says Viking offers guests “the thinking person’s cruise” as an alternative to mainstream cruises. Ships are small to get guests closer to their destination, with more time in port and more overnights. A focus on cultural enrichment brings immersive experiences on shore and on board. And only The Viking Way® of exploration provides guests with itineraries that feature Local Life, Working World and Privileged Access experiences.

In addition, Viking offers a compelling value compared to other cruise lines. Every cruise fare includes an outside stateroom, a complimentary shore excursion in each port of call, all onboard meals, and all port charges and government taxes. Guests also enjoy many complimentary amenities as part of their fare, including: beer and wine with lunch and dinner service; alternative restaurant dining; free Wi-Fi; self-service laundry; access to the Thermal Suite in the LivNordic Spa; and 24-hour room service.

Watch Our Viking Review:

For additional information, contact Viking at 1-855-8-VIKING (1-855-884-5464) or visit www.vikingcruises.com.

Norwegian Cruise Line Premieres New Docuseries “Great Cruise Comeback” Episode

Norwegian Cruise Line Premieres New Docuseries

Norwegian Cruise Line, the innovator in global cruise travel, today launches “EMBARK – The Series,” a docuseries chronicling the brand’s highly anticipated comeback as it prepares to return to service beginning July 25, 2021, with its first episode “Great Cruise Comeback”.

The first episode focuses on the ongoing measures for a healthy and safe return to sailing, including unscripted conversations with executive leaders including Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings’ President and CEO Frank Del Rio and President and CEO of Norwegian Cruise Line Harry Sommer.

Viewers will have an exclusive look at the brand’s preparations for its return to cruising, including technology designed to enhance the embarkation process, how the brand’s shipboard crew and entertainers have been managing over the last year, and how this temporary pause has affected small businesses and valued partners, including Miami-based distillery Wynwood Brewing Company.

“We are finally coming back!” said Sommer. “It’s been an exciting time for us as we recently announced the redeployment of the first ships to set sail following a yearlong pause in our operations. We’re looking forward to reconnecting with our guests, crew, team members and partners in person as well as through the EMBARK with NCL platform, which will showcase our return to cruise journey through the people of NCL.”

The journey to EMBARK with NCL begins at www.ncl.com/embark.

To learn more about Norwegian Cruise Line’s 17-ship fleet and worldwide itineraries, or to book a cruise, please call 888-NCL-CRUISE (625-2784), visit www.ncl.com or contact a travel professional.

Riviera River Cruises to Visit Once-in-a-Decade Floriade Expo in 2022

MS Geoffrey Chaucer
MS Geoffrey Chaucer

Riviera River Cruises recently announced that all 2022 departures of its Amsterdam, Cologne and the Best of Holland & Flanders River Cruise will include an excursion to the once-in-a-decade Floriade Expo in Almere, Netherlands. Floriade, the largest public event in the Netherlands, is the World’s Fair of horticulture. Riviera guests will enjoy the colors and scents of a stunning array or flowers, plants, fruits and vegetables, inspiring presentations by 40 countries, a spectacular greenhouse complex, a cable car over the Floriade park, pavilions with sustainable innovations, and a vibrant arts and culture program. To find out more information about Riviera River Cruises and the Amsterdam, Cologne and the Best of Holland & Flanders itinerary, call 888-838-8820 or visit https://www.rivierarivercruises.com.

“The Netherlands is, of course, world famous for its fields of colorful flowers, but next year guests on one of our newest cruises will get to experience an extraordinary excursion to the Floriade Expo,” said Marilyn Conroy, Riviera River Cruises’ Executive Vice President Sales and Marketing North America. “Floriade takes place only once every 10 years is truly a feast for the senses, bringing together countries from around the world for a horticultural celebration. At Riviera, we pride ourselves on special touches like this that make our guests’ trips even more memorable – we hope you’ll think of us first when booking your European river cruise.”

The eight-day Amsterdam, Cologne and the Best of Holland & Flanders River Cruise travels the Dutch waterways and Rhine River from the capital of the Netherlands to maritime Rotterdam, medieval Ghent and Belgium’s second city, Antwerp, before arriving in magnificent Cologne.

On 2022 departures, guests will have the option of either a full-day excursion to the Floriade Expo in Almere, outside Amsterdam, or a morning visit to Floriade with free time in Amsterdam in the afternoon.

Guests will also take in Rotterdam’s interesting architecture, UNESCO-listed Bruges’ historic center and Cologne’s twin-spired Gothic cathedral during guided tours, as well as visit the iconic Kinderdijk windmills, and either the Airborne Museum or Het Loo Palace near Arnhem.

Riviera River Cruises offers 20 itineraries on 10 rivers and waterways, including dedicated departures for solo travelers with no single supplement. Riviera’s fleet of 12 ships is one of the youngest in Europe, with spacious cabins and suites, and its cruises include fine culinary experiences, from splendid breakfasts to four-course dinners featuring international and regional specialties, as well as expert-led excursions to classic sights and lesser-known places.

Riviera guarantees exceptional value, promising never to add hidden surcharges or fees, and it doesn’t automatically include gratuities or drinks, so the choice is up to guests.

For more information about Riviera River Cruises, call 888-838-8820 or visit https://www.rivierarivercruises.com.

Silversea to Require All Crew and Guests To Be Fully Vaccinated

M/V Silver Explorer
The Silver Explorer enters the Lemaire Channel on the Antarctic Peninsula, 2012.

Silversea Cruises has announced protocol for its healthy return to service, as well as brand new voyages aboard Silver Moon from June.

In line with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s recommendations for safe international travel and in recognition of the importance of COVID-19 vaccinations in ensuring the safety of travellers, the cruise line will require all embarking crew and guests to have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19. The requirement will apply to all Silversea voyages globally, with the exclusion of sailings departing from Australia, for which protocol is still under evaluation.

Setting sail from 18 June, Silver Moon – the cruise line’s new flagship – will welcome guests, departing on 10-day itineraries to the Eastern Mediterranean from Greece. Including calls in some of Greece’s most beautiful destinations, such as Santorini, Paros, Mykonos, and Crete, as well as Haifa (Israel) and Cyprus, the new round-trip itineraries will be unveiled and on general sale from 15 April.

“Our guests share our excitement for our eagerly-anticipated healthy return to service. In recent months, we have seen the cruise industry resume responsibly in destinations around the world and we are delighted to announce these new inaugural sailings for our flagship,” says Roberto Martinoli, President and CEO of Silversea Cruises. “Vaccinations will play a critical role in ensuring the health and safety of our guests, crew, and the communities we visit, which we prioritise above all else. Paired with our science-backed onboard procedures, which leverage on the expertise of the Royal Caribbean Group’s Healthy Sail Panel, vaccinations will enable our guests to travel deep into the world once again, with a renewed sense of appreciation for our beautiful planet. Backed by the Royal Caribbean Group, we have introduced a range of initiatives—including our ‘Cruise with Confidence’ programme and our COVID-19 protections—to enable our guests to travel in superlative comfort and with unwavering confidence.”

Vaccinations will form part of a comprehensive, multi-layered set of science-backed protocol, which, informed and approved by the Royal Caribbean Group’s Healthy Sail Panel, will help to safeguard the health and safety of guests, crew, and visited communities. Silversea will continue to work closely with relevant governing bodies and health authorities to evolve its health and safety procedures, as new health recommendations are issued and as the fluid situation advances.

The protocol includes enhanced sanitation procedures, providing the highest standards of cleanliness in travel; increased air filtration to ensure the supply of fresh and filtered air from outdoors; high-quality onboard medical care with state-of-the-art medical equipment; and enhanced medical teams on each ship.

Find out more information about Silversea’s healthy return to service: https://www.silversea.com/lp-silversea-hrts-consumer.html

Please refer to https://www.silversea.com/health-and-travel-notice.html for the latest health and travel advisories pertaining to cruise travel.

Norwegian Cruise Line to Launch Docuseries Detailing Return to Cruise Journey

Norwegian Cruise Line to Launch Docuseries Detailing Return to Cruise Journey
The first of five episodes will premiere on April 15, 2021 at 8 p.m. ET at www.ncl.com/embark.

As it prepares for its return to service beginning July 25, 2021, Norwegian Cruise Line has announced the premiere of “EMBARK – The Series,” a docuseries chronicling the brand’s highly anticipated comeback.

The first of five episodes will premiere on April 15, 2021 at 8 p.m. ET at www.ncl.com/embark.

EMBARK – The Series is part of the Company’s ‘EMBARK with NCL’ editorial content platform which will deliver rich content through:

EMBARK – The Series

Debuting on April 15, 2021 at 8 p.m. ET with its first episode, “Great Cruise Comeback,” the new docuseries chronicles the relaunch of the brand’s 17-ship fleet. The episode focuses on the ongoing measures for a healthy and safe return to sailing, including unscripted conversations with executive leaders including Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings’ President and CEO Frank Del Rio and President and CEO of Norwegian Cruise Line Harry Sommer.

Frank Del Rio and Harry Sommer (NCL) meeting
Frank Del Rio and Harry Sommer (NCL) meeting with Miami Port & Gov’t Authorities

The first episode provides an exclusive look at the brand’s preparations for its return to service, including technology designed to enhance the embarkation process, how the brand’s shipboard crew and entertainers have been managing over the last year, and how this temporary pause has affected small businesses and valued partners, including Miami-based distillery Wynwood Brewing Company.

The nearly 30-minute episode will stream live at www.ncl.com/embark and on Facebook, with a live pre-show conversation and Q&A session featuring Sommer and NCL Executives and Team Members at 7:30 p.m. ET on April 15, 2021.

Great Cruise Comeback Episode – Sneak Peek


“We are finally coming back!” said Sommer. “Yesterday was a very big day for us as we announced the redeployment of the first ships to set sail following a yearlong pause in our operations. We’re looking forward to reconnecting with our guests, crew, employees and partners in person as well as through the EMBARK with NCL platform, which will showcase our return to cruise journey through the people of NCL.”

The Company engaged the Emmy Award-winning production team at VIVA Creative to produce the platform content, adhering to strict COVID protocols in place at the time of filming to capture timely conversations and behind-the-scenes footage. Where travel restrictions exist, local film crews were engaged, and virtual interviews conducted.

“While the idea for EMBARK with NCL was born from the need to engage with our extended NCL family of guests, partners and team members during this pandemic, the platform will not only allow us to share our journey leading up to the redeployment of our fleet this summer, but it will enable us to directly share news of future products, offerings and innovations,” said Norwegian Cruise Line Vice President of Communication and Events Christine Da Silva.

The journey to EMBARK with NCL begins at www.ncl.com/embark.

To learn more about Norwegian Cruise Line’s 17-ship fleet and worldwide itineraries, or to book a cruise, please call 888-NCL-CRUISE (625-2784), visit www.ncl.com or contact a travel professional.