First Time Cruisers, Welcome Aboard
Ocean cruises appeal to all kinds of travelers. If you want to get out and be active, you can participate in pool games, take on the rock-climbing wall, improve your golf swing, or take dance classes. Indoors, you might prefer attending a history lecture, cooking demonstrations, or try your luck in the casino. Entertainment can range from musical performances by the pool to afternoon shows such as movies, comedy improve, or even ice skating! Ships also offer a great selection of children’s and teen programs and activities to keep everyone in your brood well entertained and happy.
During the day, guests also have more relaxing options to choose from like shopping at the onboard boutiques, searching for a great read in the ship’s library, and enjoying a well-needed message or body treatment at the spa – not to mention the many venues for delicious round-the-clock dining, drinking, and snacking. Of course if you want burn off some of those calories, most of today’s ships have fully-equipped, state-of-the-art fitness centers, exercise and yoga classes.
One special entertainment hallmark of ocean cruise ships are their theaters which are home to a variety of ever-changing lineups of Broadway and Vegas-style shows. If you have little ones, cruises in the Caribbean and Bahamas offer great itineraries for families. Itineraries in the Mediterranean and Alaska are prime for those new to ocean cruising.
River cruising has also grown dramatically for the past decade and is jam-packed with historical sites, beautiful landscapes and cities – both large and small. Unlike ocean cruising, river cruise itineraries are very port-intensive – on some itineraries you may visit more than one port per day – and an actual full day on the river is a rarity.
Many classic cities, like Vienna, Budapest and Paris, were built along rivers as they were the original trade routes long before roads and railways. Since their waterways are not large enough to allow for passage of modern ocean cruise ships, low-slung river cruise ships calmly and gently ply the inland waters, often times docking just steps from some of the world’s most significant river port destinations.
Daily shore excursions for river cruises are normally included, though policies can vary between lines and some lines do charge for specially planned tours like cooking classes, private orchestral performances, and specialty dining experiences. River ships may even carry bicycles on board for complimentary use while in port and for bicycle tours.
Whether it’s sailing along one of Europe’s scenic rivers, like the Danube, Rhine or Seine, or cruising through one of Asia’s beautiful and vibrant river regions on an exotic journey, all the beautiful scenery and on shore excursions you’ll witness and experience will be fully complimented by sumptuous dining and highly-personalized service on board.