As 2018 comes to an end, I’m looking back on one of my travel highlights of the year (and desperately trying to figure out how I can squeeze it into my plans for 2019 all over again!)
If you read my previous posts, you’ll know that I recently returned from my first cruise experience, exploring the Mediterranean with Princess Cruises. Needless to say, I have been converted! My first cruise experience went far beyond my expectations, but where to next?
I decided to do some digging into my options to cure this cruise size hole in my heart now that I am back home. I had always heard people talking about their adventures sailing through the Caribbean, but I wanted to see what else was on offer…
Let me start by saying, there is nowhere in the world like Japan. That is not an exaggeration.
After years of having Japan sit proudly at the top of my bucket list, I finally knocked it off in April, during my gap year. I was astounded by the profound beauty of Tokyo’s endless skyscrapers, intertwined with stunning temples and shrines.
During my 10 day trip, I was lucky enough to spend time in Tokyo and Kyoto, but that’s just the tip of iceberg when it comes to Japan’s many culture hubs.
Princess Cruises have a number of different options to cruise around this magnificent country, from 3 – 32 day cruises, stopping in ports such as Tokyo, Osaka, Kyoto, Nagasaki, Hiroshima and more!
If you want a real treat, go for the Spring Flowers cruise, which arrives just in time to catch cherry blossom season in full swing!
When I heard about the shore excursions on offer, I knew I had to add this to my list for 2019! From experiencing traditional Japanese tea, to mastering the art of calligraphy and exploring the traditional Ryukyu village just off the shore of Ishigaki. My goal for my next visit is to reach Aomori to enjoy the“onsen” hot spring baths and visit Japan’s iconic Mount Fuji volcano.
One of the highlights of sailing around the Mediterranean was the customized experiences onboard the ship, with food, drinks and performances, all influenced by the destinations along the way. Can you imagine the sights, sounds and flavours Princess would pull out of the bag on their Japan cruises? From evening karaoke and folkloric dancers to Japanese-inspired films under the stars and delicious regional dishes.
Next up, we have got the spectacular, mind blowing, ‘how-can-this-be-a-real-place’, Alaska cruise! Have you ever come face to face with a glacier before? Well get ready, because mother nature is not messing around.
This Princess destination is… unlike anywhere in the world (yes, ok, I know I already said that about Japan, but come on??)
Fancy waking up next to Glacier Bay National Park — a UNESCO World Heritage Site — or the breathtaking Tracy Arm Fjord? This cruise will introduce you to nature like you have never seen before. Picture a pod of whales swimming next to you as you walk out onto your balcony for some fresh/freezing morning air – this might sound like a joke, but this is a REAL possibility.
If that’s not enough animal watching for you, hop off at Denali National Park to hike in the company of brown bears, wolves, moose, dall sheep and caribou.
Honestly, as I write this, I am re-thinking my #1 cruise destination for 2019… can I go to Japan and Alaska?
In total, I have spent 1 year of my life living in South America, exploring the music filled streets of Rio de Janeiro, the golden sand dunes of Jericoacoara and the historic towns of Minas – but I have never stepped foot outside Brazil. It’s about time I change this!
Princess offer the opportunity to discover some of the world’s most dramatically diverse destinations throughout South America with 13 – 34 day cruises. Can you picture yourself delving into the sweet sounds of Brazilian samba, the delicious flavours of Argentina and looking out over the Antarctic Peninsula for 34 incredible days? I can!
From the bustling cities to the heavenly islands and ancient ruins, this is your chance to discover everything that South America has to offer.
Shore excursions on this epic cruise include photographing Buenos Aires’ historic La Boca district on a walking tour, enjoying performances by the Peruvian prancing horses in Lima and saying hello to a crocodile colony on a Tarcoles River cruise. Sounds exotic right?
But the icing on top of the cake has got to be the Late Night calls – Princess stay until at least 9 p.m. in port so you can also experience some of the fabulous South American nightlife… it will be a night to remember, trust me!
Let’s take it up a notch! Princess Cruises take their ‘Grand Voyages’ very seriously, so how does a 47 day trip from London to Singapore sound?
Docking at 22 ports along the way, this legendary cruise will knock every one of these destinations off your bucket list:
London, Paris, Lisbon, Gibraltar, Barcelona, Toulon/Provence, Florence/Pisa, Rome, Naples, Sicily, Rhodes, Transit the Suez Canal (Egypt), Petra, Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Muscat, Colombo, Kuala Lumpur, Singapore, Penang, Phuket and Bali! Just let that sink in for a second…
I know the Grand Voyage sounded like the ultimate cruise experience but I couldn’t resist taking it to a whole new level!
111 days. 41 ports. My mind can’t even begin to comprehend this, but I am up for the challenge!
If, like me, you can’t decide on which cruise to go for, why not just mash a tonne of them together and hit up 41 different destinations in one go.
Kicking off in Los Angeles, California this World Cruise stops off in Hawaii, French Polynesia, New Zealand, Australia, Indonesia, Singapore, Thailand, Sri Lanka, Maldives, Seychelles Islands, Tanzania, Madagascar, Mauritius, Reunion Island, South Africa, Namibia, Brazil, Florida, Aruba, Costa Rica, Mexico and MORE.
On second thought, this might not fit in to your work schedule, but we can dream ;-)
These are just some of the destinations and grand adventures in my bucket list, but if you want to find the perfect cruise for you, click here to find out more.
A huge thank you to Princess Cruises for inviting me to discover the Mediterranean, it was a trip I will never forget and I will definitely be back on a cruise ship real soon :-)
*Hey folks! Just a quick heads up to let you know that this is a sponsored post that contains affiliate links. All that means is that I can make a small % commission if you buy something as a result of this post – it’s a win win for both of us :) You get an awesome trip & I get some tiny €£$ to put towards my next adventure too! So thank you in advance :-D