Some of us already dream of our next holiday just a few weeks after we return from the last one. We start thinking about our next destination before our suntans fade and the glamorous Instagram shots are replaced by mundane selfies by the pool.
Thankfully, the only thing you need to worry about on a cruise holiday is where to go and when. Every other need is catered to, from accommodation to meals and entertainment, not to mention the thrill of the open sea, losing yourself in the beauty of nature, strolling on exotic beaches, and exploring unfamiliar cities and the culture of their locals, says Divan Viljoen, Marketing Campaign Manager of Cruiseabout, a division of Flight Centre.
“It can be overwhelming when you’ve decided you want to go on a cruise, but are not sure which is the best ship for you, or where you should travel. To make things a little easier, our cruise specialists have compiled a list of the best times to cruise to different parts of the world.”
Local is lekker
Everybody knows Southern Africa enjoys glorious weather during this time of the year. Combine your visit to Cape Town with a two-day, fun-in-the-sun cruise to nowhere, or head from Durban to stunning Portuguese Island, off the coast of Mozambique. Imagine arriving completely relaxed at your holiday destination after taking a cruise from Durban to Cape Town. What could be better than starting your holiday with a holiday?
December and January are good times to explore the tropical islands of the Indian Ocean. Indulge your inner Robinson Crusoe with a luxurious cruise from Durban to Mauritius and Reunion, or from Mauritius to the white sandy beaches and clear blue waters of Madagascar and the Seychelles.
The diverse cultures and scenery of South America are a holidaymaker’s dream. Combine the Hollywood glamour of Los Angeles with the exotic tastes of Mexico and Costa Rica, and the rich histories and cultures of Peru and Chile during this period. Alternatively, head further south to drink caipirinhas on a beach in Brazil, before taking a cruise via beautiful Uruguay to Buenos Aires to feast on the best steaks in the world, while watching a passionate couple dance a fiery tango.
The Bahamas and the Caribbean
Snorkel in the crystal-clear waters of the Bahamas and the Caribbean islands, explore tropical jungles and the mysterious ruins of the Mayans with cruises that take you to the sizzling streets of Miami, the vibrant energy of New York or the world-famous theme parks of Orlando in the USA.
December to February is the best time to see the spectacular Northern Lights playing above the beautiful islands and fjords of the Norwegian west coast. Sleep in an iconic snow hotel and experience the thrill of a husky sleigh ride to top off a bucket list trip you will never forget.
With low rainfall and mild daily temperatures, this is the perfect time to take a cruise from Singapore along the coast of this exotic peninsula, with its manic cities and idyllic landscapes, all the way to the party paradise of Phuket, Thailand.
March is the last chance to see the Northern Lights before the Arctic Summer begins. Be blown away by the incredible beauty of fjords and mountains and even spend the night in Alta, also known as the “Town of the Northern Lights”.
Spring is the best time to visit the Mediterranean. It’s not as busy and visitors will enjoy the pleasantly warm days without having to fight the summer crowds. Take a cruise along the coasts of Italy, Spain and France and visit the islands of Sardinia and Majorca. There is an array of cruises from which to choose at this time, from the beautiful Emerald Coast in Italy to the famous island of Ibiza, or the history-filled port cities of vibrant Spain. Remember to ask your cruise specialist about whether the Eastern or Western Mediterranean will be the best option for you.
The unspoiled wilderness of Alaska is one of the last true frontiers of the world. The Alaskan summer is a wonderful time to see its shimmering glaciers, abundant wildlife and majestic mountains.
This is a busy time to cruise in the Mediterranean. Visit the ancient port of Ancona in Italy, the romantic canals of Venice, or the sun-drenched Greek islands of Santorini and Mykonos. Lose yourself in the narrow streets of Dubrovnik in Croatia, where many scenes of the Game of Thrones series were shot, or the ancient city of Split, which perfectly balances tradition with modernity.
September is the perfect time to take that glacier and wildlife cruise you have always dreamt about. The Alaskan autumn is when the leaves change to deep reds and dusty yellows, and you stand a good chance of seeing whales, sea otters and even a bear.
Once again, the Med gets a nod in autumn, and like spring, there are far fewer tourists than in July and August. Cruise from Italy along the French coast to Spain and experience the harvest season, with mild temperatures and sunny days.
You can visit Scandinavia whenever you get the chance, but September offers pleasant weather without the crowds. See the lands and seas of the Vikings and mermaids when amazing cruise deals can be found, and fares tend to be lower in the port cities as well.
When it comes to the whether, the best time to cruise in Asia is from November to March. In October and November, the mid-summer crowds haven’t yet descended on this diverse region. Explore the beauty and rich cultures and histories of China and Japan with a luxurious cruise, as summer makes a welcome appearance.
– Flight Centre