Christmas Market Cruises with Avalon Waterways

 

If all you want for Christmas is a relaxed vacation and pampering, Avalon Waterways is offering a variety of its popular Christmas Market Cruises which will transport you to a holiday experience unsurpassed by any other.

Journey on a luxury ship along some of Europe’s most storied regions as you are gratified from the moment you step aboard. The warmth and comfort that Avalon Waterways is renowned for will be immediately evident as you enjoy world-class culinary delights, spacious accommodations, an attentive and knowledgeable staff in addition to a convivial relaxed ambiance.

Joyous holiday dinners with all the trimmings are on the menu along with regional specialties and familiar favorites. Savor delicious Avalon Fresh™ vegetarian and vegan dishes created from the freshest ingredients. You’ll find that everything is done for you, so  the pleasure is all yours to simply enjoy your luxury vacation.

Festively decorated ships provide a lovely holiday ambiance as you cruise in luxury to such iconic cities as Vienna, Salzburg, Zurich, Prague, Budapest, Frankfurt, Basel and more. Small towns and villages will delight your senses with the unforgettable sights, delightful tastes and fragrant aromas of the season.

Have the truly merry and unique holiday that you’ve been dreaming of on a variety of these Christmas-themed cruises. Five new sailings are: Christmastime in Alsace & Germany; Christmas in the Heart of Germany; Christmastime from Prague to Basel; Christmastime from Frankfurt to Vienna and Christmastime from Vienna to Frankfurt.

Famous markets include the Budapest Christmas market where you can buy hand-made crafts and sample traditional Hungarian delights, Nuremberg’s world-famous Christkindlemarkt – one of Central Europe’s oldest and largest, lined with over 200 candy cane striped stalls. Highlights of which include the tiny puppets called “Nuremberg Plum People.” Other iconic Christmas markets are Neumarkt, Cologne’s oldest and the Floating Christmas market. You’ll discover heavenly traditional foods, handcrafted souvenirs and the world-famous spiced wine called glühwein and glögg which are sure to warm you along the way.

Voyages range from five to 15 days and are offered on Avalon Waterway’s spectacular Suite Ships where luxury and comfort are standard. Stay in spacious Panorama Suites, which are 30 percent larger than the industry standard, and watch the incredible views from the Open-Air Balcony. Exclusive to these ships, the innovative wall-to-wall and floor-to-ceiling windows open wider then any other, merging the outside with the inside. An exceptional detail – beds are turned to face the window – a bed with a view! Everything was thought of to provide guests with the ultimate luxury river cruise. Explore Europe in a new way as breathtaking views slowly pass before you both on and off the ship.

Experience a Christmas Market Cruise with Avalon Waterways and begin a holiday tradition your family and friends can enjoy together every year.

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For more information and cruise deals on Avalon Waterways and Christmas Market Cruises, visit us at Cruise.com or contact one of our cruise experts at 1-888-776-0659.

Family Cruises – the Best Vacation for Everyone!

Before you know it, summer vacation will be here, so now is the time to make your family travel plans. If you are looking for something that is lots of fun while also being relaxing and cost-effective, consider a cruise. Cruises provide the ideal group vacation for family reunions and celebrations including birthdays, graduations, anniversaries and even weddings which can be performed onboard. Reserve your trip soon to ensure that you get the ship, accommodations and itinerary you desire. Take advantage of the many benefits of a multi-generational family cruise including priceless time spent together.

Stretch your dollar while exploring new destinations, participating in exciting activities and being pampered from the moment you step onboard. Dine in a variety of delicious restaurants, many of which are included in the cruise fare. Choose from many fabulous cruise ships with specially designed kids-only facilities and youth and teen programs supervised and hosted by counselors. Babysitting is typically offered as well, so parents can enjoy some romantic alone time. Many cruise ships boast adult-only areas, pools and restaurants that provide the peace and serenity you have been dreaming about.

Compared to a land-based resort, a cruise vacation is quite economical. Ships boast a wide selection of amenities, entertainment and activities which are all included in the fare, as well as many restaurants and more. What could compare with watching a movies with the family on a gigantic screen under the stars or participating in laughter filled contests on stage?

Imagine the thrill of waking up to different beautiful ports every morning or on several days of your cruise. Your kids will have fun peeking out the window to discover where they are docked.

Bring the grandparents and extended family along, a cruise provides the perfect backdrop for a family reunion. Spend as much time together as you like, but also have the freedom to pursue your own interests. Spend quality time with each other and never worry about cooking, cleaning or preparing the guest room. Everything will be done for you! 

Vacations are all about getting away from it all, and cruise ships provide ample opportunities for parents to go off by themselves and enjoy grown-up time. While the kids are busy having fun with their activities and making new friends, couples can get pampered at the spa with a side-by-side massage, have a cool drink at the adults-only pool (depending on ship), savor exceptional cuisine at a romantic candlelit dinner and go dancing.

Specially designed “family staterooms” are interconnected on many cruise ships, making multi-generational cruising more convenient and easier than ever. Spacious suites also make an ideal choice for those traveling together.

Kids, tweens and teens will love the array of activities designed for them in the youth programs. Specifically geared for different age groups – tots to teens– can be as adventurous or laid-back as they choose. Kids of all ages will want to experience the fun at onboard water parks with exhilarating slides, while teens and tweens hang out at the video arcade, ice-skating rink, rock climbing wall, bumper cars and more, depending on the ship. Pizza parties, high-tech games, competitions, dances and other fun activities will ensure this is an unforgettable time for your younger family members.

With a huge selection of restaurants, including many casual venues, meals are easy and fun. Satisfy everyone in the family’s taste buds at the main restaurants, buffets and al fresco options. Many eateries have special “kid-friendly” menus with such favorites as pizza, mac ’n cheese, hot dogs, ice cream and more. Adults-only restaurants offer the perfect ambiance to enjoy delicious cuisine from around the world.

Your family will create happy memories as you share fun and unique adventures — family cruises are priceless.

For more information and cruise deals on Family Cruises, visit us at Cruise.com or contact one of our cruise experts at 1-888-776-0659.

Cruising into a Fairytale – the Norwegian Fjords

Discover a world of magical beauty on a Norwegian fjords cruise. Breathtaking vistas and amazing wildlife will leave you spellbound. Carved by huge glaciers over millions of years, these towering fjords provide some of the most spectacular scenery in the world. Thunderous waterfalls, lush valleys, snow-capped mountains, emerald forests and awe-inspiring views will provide you with unforgettable memories on these breathtaking sailings.

Typically ranging from seven to 14 nights, almost all Norwegian fjords itineraries include the big city of Bergen, while others visit such postcard-perfect places as Geiranger, a stunning village of awe-inspiring beauty, Alesund and Flaam (Flåm). Cruises may also include Oslo and some go as far north as Spitsbergen (Svalbard) in the Arctic.

Waiting to be explored are hidden inlets, dubbed Norway’s “fingers,” where you can view some of this region’s most priceless attributes. Nature-lovers will be enthralled with the amazing scenery including ages-old dramatic rock formations, sparkling waterfalls and quaint fishing villages. Fortunate guests may get to see whales, porpoises and seals along the journey, as well as such rare birds as Puffins, White-winged Redstart and many others. Grazing reindeer have been known to make appearances to the delight of onlookers. Exhilarating shore excursions may include the historic Flåm railway and kayaking.

Additional unique experiences include a visit to Oslo, where one of the main attractions is the unique 75-acre Vigeland Sculpture Park, a favorite for children. Explore the Viking Ship Museum at Bygdøy on the west side of Oslo and see one of the world’s best-preserved wooden Viking ships. The National Gallery houses various works by Norwegian artist, Edvard Munch, including his masterpiece, “The Scream.”  Considered the country’s most beautiful building, the magnificent Opera House was designed to be reminiscent of a glacier sliding into a fjord with its white granite and Italian Carrara marble giving the illusion of glistening ice.

Stunning views are also offered at Geirangerfjord (or Geiranger) — the “jewel” of the fjords. Framed by a picturesque mountainous backdrop, it is set between snow-clad peaks and steep-sided rock walls, with waterfalls rushing from its jagged summits. Highlighting any visit here is the opportunity to behold The Seven Sisters and The Suitor, two thunderous waterfalls which face one another across the fjord. A third, the Bridal Veil, got its name from the eerie mist that comes off  as they cascade down over the rocks.

You’ll find wonderful and traditional handcrafted Norwegian items to bring home, such as classic pewter flatware, watches and jewelry. Native hand-knitted sweaters make an ideal souvenir choice as they are part of a long tradition in Norway. A favorite keepsake is the country’s unique folk-art called rosemaling – a decorative style of painting, often used in colorful ornaments and boxes.

Revel in the majesty and pristine beauty you will experience up-close on a Norwegian fjords cruise in this fairytale part of the world. Several cruise lines and luxury ships will transport you here in sublime comfort for the vacation of a lifetime.

 

For more information and cruise deals on Norwegian fjords cruises, visit us at Cruise.com or contact one of our cruise experts at 1-888-776-0659.

Celebrity Cruises’ Celebrity Edge – New Ship & New Features

 

The stunning Celebrity Edge will be the first of Celebrity Cruises revolutionary Edge Class ships when she debuts in fall 2018. Taking innovation to new levels, extraordinary features will be introduced on this spectacular 117,000-ton, 2,900-guest vessel.  She will be joined by three siblings, Celebrity Beyond in 2020, with a third and fourth yet unnamed to follow in 2021 and 2022.

Celebrity Cruises has outdone itself with this incredible new Celebrity Edge which will showcase innovative features never before seen on a cruise ship.

Highlights:

  • “Magic Carpet” Roving Deck

The jewel in the crown on the Celebrity Edge is sure to be what is dubbed the Magic Carpet – a cantilevered tennis court-sized “movable deck” or platform purposefully designed to be repositioned at four different deck heights. Stops will include Deck 16, where it will be transformed into a venue for “Dinner on the Edge” — a 90-seat specialty restaurant that will open for guests to savor fabulous meals while also enjoying the sunset; it will serve as an extension of the main pool area on Deck 14 and on Deck 5, providing additional space for al fresco dining at one of the specialty restaurants. Finally, at its lowest position on Deck 2, the Magic Carpet will be a convenient “Destination Gateway” for embarkation and tendering.

  • New Resort Deck & Rooftop Garden

The Resort Deck will be unlike any other outdoor space on a cruise ship. Amenities will include a beautiful asymmetrical area with a resort-style ambiance. Guests will be able to soak up the sun at the outward-facing pool, take a dip in the 25-yard lap pool, relax in martini glass-shaped hot tubs, participate in games and activities throughout the day, take a run along the two-deck jogging track or simply chill-out in one of the spacious poolside cabanas. The Rooftop Garden, was designed to reflect a living urban “playscape” inspired by fun childhood playgrounds. An outdoor movie-and-meal entertainment pairing called “Taste of Film” will be featured here at night.

  • The Retreat Sundeck

A private nirvana is offered to Suite guests who will have exclusive use of the sundeck called The Retreat. Here they will be indulged with their own comfy lounge, pool and restaurants. Six duplex Edge Villas will also have direct access to the Retreat Sundeck.

  • Edge Stateroom with Infinite Veranda

Your Edge Stateroom with Infinite Veranda will be magically transformed to offer a continuous space from the room’s door, taking your cabin to the water’s edge at the mere touch of a button. Guests will be able to enjoy easy open air access to the sea whenever they desire and may also personalize everything from lighting, shades, temperature and service from another button. The sumptuous accommodations also feature exclusive Cashmere Collection bedding and mattresses.

  • Edge Villas & Iconic Suites

Luxurious two-level Edge Villas will house magnificent expansive views from two-story windows looking out over the terrace, a three-foot-deep private plunge pool, comfy lounges as well as having special access to The Retreat. Iconic Suites will have two bedrooms and two bathrooms, in addition to a huge 700-square-foot veranda.

As more exciting details are revealed in the coming months, please return to this blog for updates.

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For more information and cruise deals on Celebrity Cruises and Celebrity Edge, visit us at Cruise.com or contact one of our cruise experts at 1-888-776-0659.

World’s Largest Cruise Ship, Royal Caribbean’s Symphony of the Seas-Preview!

Music to the ears of those who love cruising with innovative and always exciting Royal Caribbean International – the 5,500-guest Symphony of the Seas is scheduled to debut in spring 2018. At 230,000 tons, she will claim the title of the “world’s largest cruise ship,” boasting 28 more staterooms than Harmony of the Seas, her newest sister ship. As one of the line’s exceptional Oasis-class ships, she will also be slightly longer and wider than the others.

Symphony of the Seas is an adventure-filled floating resort and will showcase exciting new features and amenities, as well as such favorite signatures as the seven diverse “neighborhoods,” each offering something unique. These include Central Park, Boardwalk with its beautiful hand-carved wooden carousel, Royal Promenade, Vitality at Sea Spa and Fitness Center and the Youth Zone. Stretching the entire length of the ship, the Pool and Sports Zone features the Ultimate Abyss, a 10-story waterslide – one of the tallest at sea. The Perfect Storm features multi-level slides one with a gigantic “champagne bowl” that will “swirl” you for an adrenaline infused experience. Splashaway Bay will be a water park for kids.

Step onboard and enter an exciting world of fun and thrills, including more than 25 bars and lounges, including the Bionic Bar, where a robot creates and serves your favorite cocktails and Vintages, perfect for wine enthusiasts.

More than 20 dining options will take you on a gourmet adventure, including mouthwatering meals at Jamie’s Italian for family-style dining, Izumi for Asian-inspired dishes and Chops Grille, an elegant classic steakhouse. Other delicious options include Solarium Bistro and Sabor, where scrumptious Mexican dishes will melt in your mouth.

Shop for a variety of name-brand, duty-free items in Central Park and the Royal Promenade, the places to be with restaurants, bars, parades and more. Share your vacation with friends back home via VOOM, touted as the fastest Internet at sea. Recharge and soothe your senses at the full-service Vitality at Sea Spa and Fitness Center.

You will find relaxation on the menu at several pools, including the Solarium, an adults-only retreat. Soak in whirlpools cantilevered over the ocean. Plenty of fun features encourage together time for families, such as classic carnival games at the Boardwalk Arcade, the FlowRider® surf simulator, rock-climbing walls and a nine deck elevated zip line.

Age-specific activities such as treasure hunts, karaoke, contests, sporting events and dance parties are some of the offerings at the complimentary Adventure Ocean® Youth Program. There will be so much for younger family members to do, you may have to make an appointment to spend time together.

This new ship will offer accommodations to suit everyone’s needs, from those traveling solo to huge beautiful suites and Accessible Staterooms. Family-friendly staterooms feature a variety of configurations to easily and comfortably accommodate everyone. Select from richly appointed Royal Suites, two-story Royal Loft Suite, as well as the other spectacular suites. AquaTheater Suites provide perfect views of the AquaTheater, so you can watch the shows from the luxury of your private balcony. The four-bedroom Royal Family Suites with a balcony are ideal for multi-generational groups.

You’ll be sitting on the edge of your seat with exciting entertainment choices, such as Tony Award-winning Broadway hits at the multi-level theater and thrilling shows at the immense waterfront AquaTheater. Amazing ice-skating shows and high energy gaming in the huge casino will add extra excitement to your cruise vacation. 

Symphony of the Seas will spend her inaugural summer season in the Mediterranean and in the fall will do a transatlantic crossing. Beginning in November 2018 she will sail to the Eastern and Western Caribbean from her homeport of Miami.

Please come back to this blog for more news as it becomes available on the extrordinary Symphony of the Seas.

For more information and cruise deals on Royal Caribbean International and Symphony of the Seas, visit us at Cruise.com or contact one of our cruise experts at 1-888-776-0659.