Where and when to go on a cruise
How many times have you dreamed to take a break, escape from the everyday life and set out for a nice cruise vacation? So far so good, but the issue is to consider the various aspects. When is the best time, what is the best place, and what are the suitable weather conditions? And last but not least, the off days of school, that your children will have to lose during the vacations.
For example, those who can go on holiday only in the month of July or August shall settle for just a simple cruise in the Mediterranean, but those who may go on holiday in winter can opt to go on an Alaska cruise. Instead, those who want to escape from the rigors of the European winter may consider spending the winter, for at least a week to ten days, in the Caribbean.
Of course, everything depends on the personal taste, what you want to do during your holidays and budget.
To your advantage, the cruise ships are sailing throughout the year and around the world. But where and when is the best time to start?
- First, let’s see what are the most important destinations offered by cruise lines to consider:
- The Mediterranean
- The Baltic sea and Northern Europe
- The Antilles and the Caribbean Sea
- Canada and New England
- South America
- The islands of the Pacific and Hawaii
- Australia, New Zealand, and the South Pacific
- The Far East
- The Middle East
- The Indian Ocean
- South Africa
Let’s start from the geographical area that we are most close, and then proceed to the west.
Have a good trip, on the contrary, have a good cruise!
High season: From May to September.
Low season: From October to April.
Why to go: To take a vacation and see the admirable, the colorful mosaic of cultures, famous archaeological sites and cities of art, ancient as Rome, Athens, Istanbul, Alexandria; to follow the stages of the legendary journey of Ulysses, and discover islands such as Mykonos, Santorini, Kefalonia and Cyprus, finally coming to the west, the Moors in the Spain, and beyond the pillars of Hercules. from here the horizon expands to offer small beads, kissed by the sun, and scattered in the Atlantic Ocean: Madeira and the Canary islands, which wink in Casablanca, warm colors and intense perfumes.
Some tips: In spring and autumn you will enjoy the benefits of a mild climate; you may want to avoid the confusion that characterizes the summer months, besides finding the advantage of competitive rates.
The Baltic Sea and Northern Europe
The Spirit of a Scandinavian
When to go: From May to September. However, some cruises offer trips along the Norwegian coast throughout the year.
High season: from June to August.
Low season: May and September.
Why go: to see the midnight sun and discover the magical dimension of fairy-tale landscapes made of spectacular fjords and the wonders of geothermal energy under the sky, Icelandic and Norwegian;
to delve into the traditions of Viking and Celtic cultures and to get lost in the maze of the Scandinavian and Baltic city’s, such as St. Petersburg, which awaits you with the amazing museum of the Hermitage, where three million works of art are presented. You will feel like reliving the treasure of the Tsars while admiring the Winter Palace and the summer residence of Pedrodvoret.
A few tips: even in summer you might need some jacket and heavier clothes to be able to face the cold winds that run along the outside decks of the ship or during excursions. It is a good idea to dress in layers since the changes of the weather are rapid, even during the same day.
Take advantage of the two-day stop in the port of St. Petersburg, to attend a performance of classical dance, Ballet or to enjoy good caviar washed down with vodka.
The Antilles and the Caribbean Sea
A Spa Under the Open Sky
When to go: All year round. Except from June to November to avoid the months of hurricanes.
High season: During the weeks of Christmas and new year and from February to mid-April.
Low season: From the end of April to May and September.
Why to go: To experience an active holiday and for exploring the coral atolls, sandy bays; to penetrate the mysteries of the Maya, along the Mexican Riviera and to relax under the palm trees swinging with gentle breezes; Puerto Rico, Cuba, Aruba, St. Maarten and Barbados await you at the rhythm of the Calypso. The Caribbean: so many ways to say paradise.
A few tips: The lovers of quite holidays should avoid the high season, since the ships travel at full load, which results in crowded ports from the mega cruise ships, overflowing with, families with children and teenagers. If you decide to take the low season, keep in mind that in the case of hurricanes, the proposed itinerary may vary a lot to avoid the devastating effects of the climatic conditions. Be prepared for the possibility of watching torrential rains and storm surges.
Canada and New England
The colors of the Foliage
When to go: From mid-September to the end of October.
High season: September and October.
Low season: From may to August; cruises offered by Carnival and Holland America.
Why to go: To catch the bright colors that inflame the trees of majestic North American forests; to see the lighthouses of Maine and to visit the Liberty Ship Memorial, dedicated to 266 ships for World War II, you will find the impressive cliffs of the Saguenay Fjord, Halifax, Boston, and the aristocratic Québec City, with its majestic Chateau Frontenac.
A few tips: By mid-September, schools reopen, and it is the right time to take a relaxing cruise along the coasts of Canada and New England. In October, however, the temperatures may fall steeply especially in the most northern regions.
A Dip in The Ice Age
When to go: May to September
High season: June to August.
Low season: May and September.
Why go: To hover on the long beaches in the Park Denali, and observe the abundant wildlife, which includes reindeer, moose, gray wolves and grizzly bears; to watch the diving whales through glaciers from the balcony of your cabin.
A few tips: Because of the numerous cruise ships in small ports, you should expect an exceptional overcrowding in small towns in Alaska. To avoid this inconvenience, choose a midweek departures. Also Remember that the direct routes to the north (Vancouver – Seaward) are less costly than those directed towards the south (Seaward -Vancouver). During May, generally it rains less than in the summer, and the panorama looks nicer, with the peaks of the mountains still covered with snow. In September, you might have the luck to see the northern lights (Aurora Borealis). If you go to Alaska to see the wildlife, then the best time will be the high season (June to August).
When to go: During the summer in the southern hemisphere, from November to March.
High season: From November to March.
Low season: From April and October.
Why go: To wander around the glaciers of the Beagle, or Cape Horn to be surprised by the penguins of Magellan, to explore the endless National Parks, and to glide along the wide and muddy waters of the Amazon River, up to the Indians in remote tribal villages. To experience a true browsing experience to the rhythm of samba and tango from Valparaiso to Buenos Aires or from Rio de Janeiro to Fortaleza.
A few tips: Even in the high season, the weather can quickly, especially in Punta Arenas and Ushuaia, where the wind is often strong. Bring suitable clothing to face such weather conditions.
Some cruise companies offer itineraries to the Galapagos Islands, a real oasis of wildlife, made famous by the British naturalist Charles Darwin. The tropical climate, which characterizes this islands of volcanic origin, making it possible to be visited throughout the year. However, during the months of August and September, you may run into a rough sea.
The Last Frontier That the World Offers to the Tourist Adventurer
When to go: The peak period, in which the temperatures on the coast are moderate (on average from -5 to + 5 degrees centigrade) from December to February.
Available Options: Different size of ships are available. there are small icebreakers from 50-100 passengers, cruisers from 100-200 passengers, or cruise ships that can carry up to 600.
The smaller ships are making more stops, while the larger ones are more stable in rough water thus makes fewer stops. Cruises generally take from 8 to 29 days. The Longer ones are stopping even in the Falkland Islands and South Georgia, paradise of the penguins
Why to go: To return to home without having the words to describe the beauty of the places that exceeds your dreams; to follow the enormous iceberg that create shadows against the light; to befriend with some cute penguins and feel the impact of cold air on your cheeks and the polar winds that whip the sides of the ship.
Some tips for a cruise to Antarctica:
It is a trip well worth doing at least once in your life but that cannot be accomplished with a nominal cost. On the other hand, most cruise lines offer base prices that include the flight from Buenos Aires to and vice versa, and all the land excursions, accompanied by a team of experienced guides, including naturalists, geologists, etc. Any type of ship you choose you may find a rough sea while crossing the Strait of Drake. You do not need to pack thick jackets since most of the ships provide heavy jackets for its passengers.
The Pacific Islands and Hawaii
The End of the Cutoff line!
When to go: the scenic wonders of Polynesia are accessible twelve months a year.
High season: From April to October, dry and breezy and less risk of storms.
Low season: From November to March, when the climate is more humid and rainy.
Why to go: To see the atolls, and the paintings from Gauguin; to find peace and harmony between the reef and the lagoons in Rangiroa; to discover the surreal colors and opalescent sands of Bora Bora, dominated by the silhouette of an extinct volcano; to immerse yourself in an authentic underwater paradise offering corals, sharks, dolphins and sea eagles; the Polynesian to the Grand Marché Papeete will welcome you with their smiles and imaginative pareos, and the delicate scent of the Tiare oil.
Some advice: In the Fiji islands, try the marinated fish, cooked in a lovo. Mango, pineapple, papaya, and kava: try everything!
The Islands Of Hawaii
When to go: The Hawaiian islands are accessible all around the year, but winter (December to March) is officially the rainy season, although it is “high season” for tourism.
High season: From the end of December to April.
Low season: May, June, and September.
Why go: Few places in the world can match the impact of the green walls, the hidden valleys and the cliffs of Kauai, pervaded by a prehistoric atmosphere; to capture the spirit of the islands with a hula dance.
Some advice: the time for and the best prices are often found between April-May and September-October. Avoid the month of August due to hot weather and high humidity. The best way to explore the lush landscapes and impenetrable it is to get on a helicopter and fly over an active volcano, or over the rugged coast and see the white plumes of waterfalls which drain into deep valleys covered with Woods
Australia, New Zealand, and the South Pacific
When to go: All year. Because of its size, Australia has a remarkable variety of climates. In spring and autumn the weather is mild almost everywhere; from December to February it is very hot along the country, except in Tasmania.
High season: From late November to March
Low season: From May to September
Why go: To discover the great metropolis, coral reefs, deserts, and forests; to observe the ancient Aboriginal rituals, to cross the Tasman Sea to New Zealand Maori, which will surprise you with its sea views and geothermal wonders including geysers.
A few tips: The majority of Australians go on holiday from late December to late January, so expect the crowded beaches and harbors. Discover the natural beauty of New Caledonia.
The Far East
When to go: From November to April.
Low season: From May to October. Since this continental area is very wide, it is recommended to verify the real climatic conditions of individual states.
Why go: To admire the Golden pagodas of Burma and the temples of Indonesia; to navigate the waters of the Mekong and penetrate the mysteries of the jungle of Malaysia. Forest of skyscrapers, floating markets, cathedrals, shopping, and orchids, the amazing alternation between ancient and modern: all this and much more is Asia!
A few tips: During the visit to the temples, dress in a respectful manner, avoid touching the monks, and sit never ever with your feet facing the Buddha.
The Middle East
When to go: from December to February.
Why go: There are no terms of comparison to describe a reality such that you will find during a cruise to the United Arab Emirates; a charming frame defines luxury and technology, the deserts and skyscrapers, forts, the falconers and the sultans, villages surrounded by Palmieri, and large shopping centers. The geysers on the sea Salalah, the ancient walls of Muscat, a souk of spices, scents and colors await you for a vacation of the thousand and one nights…
A few tips: In the winter, bring light clothing for the day, sweater and jacket for the evening and for a few relatively cold days, and a scarf for the wind. Enjoy the dizziness that you try to get in the elevator to 124 floors of the Burj Khalifa and admire the Dubai skyline view from above.
The Indian Ocean
Seychelles, Mauritius, Réunion
When to go: All year round. The Seychelles is always warm, with temperatures falling rarely below 24 degrees Celsius. You may want to check the weather conditions of the individual Islands, knowing that there are also diversions within the regions.
Why to go: To discover the beauty of the Spice Islands, made of lush coconut palms, hibiscus and bougainvillea, vanilla plantations and sugarcane; to breathe in the scent of ylang-ylang while sunbathing on one of the fabulous beaches of Mauritius or during an excursion to Victoria, the world’s smallest capital; to see La Digue and explore the incredible granite rocks that outline the profile of the most beautiful beach, Anse Source d’argent.
A few tips: Do you want an idea for a perfect souvenir from the Seychelles? Then buy the coco d’amour, a sweet liquor, whose bottle has the shape of the coco de mer, the symbol of these islands.
South Africa and Madagascar
When to go South Africa: In September and October to avoid the summer rains in the eastern sector and tropical cyclones that may affect the eastern areas in summer and autumn.
When to go Madagascar: In September and October, which corresponds to the best period to make excursions and visit the various attractions of flora and fauna. From June-August, remains good, even if it is very rainy on the east coast.
Why go: To sleep in the savannah, and to surprise at the sight of the majestic Big Five, flamingos, zebras, and gazelles; to discover the lush Cape vineyards and Dutch colonial architecture. At the Cape of Good Hope, along with the Boulders Beach, you will see even the penguins on the magnificent white sandy beaches.
A few tips: enjoy a 3 day overland of pure adventure to explore the Kruger National Park, on the border between Mozambique and South Africa, during the stop in the ports of Durban and Maputo.
If you get the opportunity, take the 45-minute Route 44, from Cape Town to Strand, which goes through stretches of untouched ocean overlooked by the wild mountains. Visit the amazing Palace of the Lost City, at Sun City, the Las Vegas of South Africa.