Cruising

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The secret “kit” cruise ship employees bring to every job

<p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Cruise ship employees have revealed their own “life saving” kits to deal with the pressures and demands of staff life. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">One former worker, Joshua Kinder opened up about life onboard a cruise after more than five years of employment. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Working as a drummer, Kinder revealed there is a “kit” to brighten their day or make it just a bit better. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">“With us we would bring the lifesaving first-aid kit that every forlorn crew member aboard a ship of darkness needs,” he wrote in his book </span><span style="font-weight: 400;">Chronicles of a Cruise Ship Worker. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">“A red satchel filled with positive attitudes and optimistic outlooks, a sturdy hand powered bilge pump, a couple of gas masks hooked up to oxygen tanks, diving gear in case we found ourselves with unexpected reef in our crew quarters, a lifetime supply of coconut and pineapple scented air fresheners to mask the smell of our cabin.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">"A warm wool blanket for when the ship thermostat gets stuck on the setting labelled ‘ice cream freezer’.”’</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">The former employee also added: “A thin sheet for when said air conditioning breaks down, horse tranquilisers to be used when the ship is placed in Red Alert, the obligatory bottle of haberno hot sauce to mask the otherwise unpalatable foods served in the crew mess.”</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Joshua then humorously wrote every employee would need a life raft in case they need to jump ship. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Despite there being a few “essentials” you could probably skip out on, there are some that are absolutely crucial to get through ship life. </span></p>

Cruising

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These travel tips are no longer true

<p>We all love an insider tip, but some of the classic tips for travellers no longer hold true.</p> <p><strong>1. Book a plane ticket far in advance to save money </strong></p> <p>This myth may have been true back in the ’60s, when flights were less common than they are today. Back then, the demand for a flight would naturally increase as the date approached, there being few other options. These days, a plethora of alternatives for the most popular routes means that demand is levelled out. According to recent studies, the best time to buy a domestic ticket is between six and seven weeks out.</p> <p><strong>2. The best hotel prices are on travel websites </strong></p> <p>Don’t overlook the benefits of going straight to the hotel to negotiate a good deal on a room. Many hotel chains offer rate guarantees and encourage customers to book directly. Hotels also frequently have discount or perk offers that third-party websites aren’t privy to. On top of this, hotels give the upgrades, not the booking agents.</p> <p><strong>3. Avoid street food When in Rome, do what the Romans do</strong></p> <p>If this means standing up at a cheap street stall, then follow the crowd. Don’t sit down at a restaurant and spend four times more, on the simple assumption that it’s the only safe option. Can you see what’s going on the kitchen?</p> <p><strong>4. Put your money in a money pouch or belt </strong></p> <p>This is the fastest way to stand out from locals – who will have their money in a wallet or purse. Only take what you need when you leave your hotel room and make sure to put your wallet in a front pocket.</p> <p><strong>5. Duty free is cheaper </strong></p> <p>This is only true if you’re buying products that are heavily taxed, such as cigarettes and alcohol. Avoid sunglasses and perfumes, as these usually have a much higher base price than what you’ll find outside the airport.</p> <p><em>This article first appeared in </em><a href="https://www.readersdigest.com.au/travel/tips/travel-myths"><em>Reader’s Digest</em></a><em>. For more of what you love from the world’s best-loved magazine, </em><a href="http://readersdigest.innovations.com.au/c/readersdigestemailsubscribe?utm_source=over60&amp;utm_medium=articles&amp;utm_campaign=RDSUB&amp;keycode=WRA87V"><em>here’s our best subscription offer.</em></a></p> <p><img style="width: 100px !important; height: 100px !important;" src="/media/7820640/1.png" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/f30947086c8e47b89cb076eb5bb9b3e2" /></p>

Cruising

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Will you try these extreme holiday cures?

<p><span style="font-weight: 400;">You thrive on adventure, live for the unforgettable experience, there’s just one little thing that scares you…</span></p> <p>Frightened of sharks? <span style="font-weight: 400;">Get up close and personal with the ocean’s most majestic creatures at Beqa Island in Fiji. With no cages or barriers between you and the sharks, you can swim with eight different species including bull sharks, reef sharks, grey nurses and the awe-inspiring tiger shark.</span></p> <p>Frightened of heights? <span style="font-weight: 400;">Take a bungee jumping adventure up a notch by diving head first into an active volcano. A helicopter will fly you into the caldera of a volcano near Pucon, Chile, so you can bungee-jump within 200m of molten lava below.</span></p> <p>Frightened of speed? <span style="font-weight: 400;">Some of the world’s best desert dunes are in the Wahiba Sands, a two-hour drive from Muscat, the capital of Oman. With many about 100m in height, this is the perfect place for some extreme sandboarding action. If you’re not prepared to fly down the dunes standing up, you can warm up by tobogganing down instead.</span></p> <p>Frightened of rats? <span style="font-weight: 400;">Karni Mata Temple in Rajasthan, India, is just what you need to face your fears. Also called the Temple of the Rats, it’s famous for both its beautiful architecture and the 20,000-odd rats that call it home.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">This article first appeared in </span><a href="https://www.readersdigest.com.au/travel/activities/extreme-holiday-cures"><span style="font-weight: 400;">Reader’s Digest</span></a><span style="font-weight: 400;">. For more of what you love from the world’s best-loved magazine, </span><a href="http://readersdigest.innovations.com.au/c/readersdigestemailsubscribe?utm_source=over60&amp;utm_medium=articles&amp;utm_campaign=RDSUB&amp;keycode=WRA87V"><span style="font-weight: 400;">here’s our best subscription offer.</span></a></p> <p><img style="width: 100px !important; height: 100px !important;" src="/media/7820640/1.png" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/f30947086c8e47b89cb076eb5bb9b3e2" /></p>

Cruising

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Did you know this bad cruise habit could get you into trouble?

<p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Cruise ships are a haven away from home and a place to put your feet up, relax and enjoy your time on the high seas. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">However, there are always rule everywhere we go - and a cruise getaway is no different. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">There is one rule cruise ship passengers are expected to follow or else they face the risk of getting into big trouble. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Supercruisers said sun lounge “hogging” is no longer acceptable on cruise ships and could get travellers into a bit of trouble if they are spotted making that mistake. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">One expert told</span><a href="https://www.express.co.uk/travel/cruise/1157046/cruises-2020-cruise-ship-passenger-chair-hogging-sun-lounger-carnival-cruises"><span style="font-weight: 400;"> express.co.uk</span></a><span style="font-weight: 400;"> passengers have a number of activities to enjoy while onboard so it can come off as extremely selfish to hog beach chairs when there's already a limited number. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">“If you’re looking to begin your days on the ship relaxing by one of the onboard pools, you’ll be looking to reserve a sun lounger – often a topic of contention on many holidays, both onboard and on land.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">“To stop guests unfairly chair hogging, a term that has been coined for the act of reserving prime spots by the pool with towels and other belongings while the chairs remain empty for hours, Carnival Cruises has implemented a strict policy.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">“The rules that are enforced by shipboard team members, state that if belongings are left unattended for longer than around half an hour to reserve chairs, the items shall be removed.”</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Carnival cruises implemented the new ryle as a way to stamp out selfish hogging. </span></p>

Cruising

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Venice heartache: Cruise ships asked to find a solution before it's too late

<p><span style="font-weight: 400;">The Venice port authority has called on Europe’s most popular cruise ship destinations to tighten their rules as the dangers posed by the massive vessels are taking a serious toll. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Italy’s transport minister has proposed a plan to divert massive shops from porting at Venice’s historic centre after five people were injured when a 13-deck shop hit a tourist boat along the busy Giudecca Canal. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">The incident resulted in protests calling for big ships to be banned from the gorgeous venice lagoon all together. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Ships weighing more than 1,000 tonnes will have to find a different waterway to settle into. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Venetians carried banners reading "Ships out of the lagoon" and "No big ships" while others turned to rowboats in the Venetian Lagoon. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Venice hosted 594 cruise ships in 2018, and critics argue the currents created by the vessels are causing costly damages to Renaissance buildings. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">"They are destroying Venice, they are physically destroying Venice, physically destroying our lungs," activist Tommaso Cacciari told the </span><a href="https://www.abc.net.au/news/2019-08-09/venice-bans-large-cruise-ships-from-city-centre/11398434"><span style="font-weight: 400;">ABC</span> </a><span style="font-weight: 400;">in March.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">The  cruise ship ban follows after a lengthy campaign by Venice residents for a better and more sustainable tourism model. </span></p>

Cruising

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Cruise ship doctor’s disgusting food trick admission

<p><span style="font-weight: 400;">While cruise ships are often a dream holiday filled with luxury, fun and good times - there are always a few restrictions and warnings travellers must be wary of. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">One cruise staff member has made a shocking admission about a repulsive way chefs on his particular vessel tricked their customers. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Ben MacFarlane explained in his 2011 book </span><span style="font-weight: 400;">Cruise Ship SOS </span><span style="font-weight: 400;">wrote wealthier travellers often have intensely high standards, expectations and demands. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">While it can be risky to speak out against cruisers with unmeetable standards, there is a way one cruise kitchen skirted around the issue. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">“You don’t need to panic if one of the high rollers gets brought into the Medical Centre on a stretcher after eating poisonous sushi,” he recalls a colleague telling him. “Because they’re not going to die.”</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">MacFarlane adds: “Apparently the world’s keenest sushi lovers like nothing better than playing a bit of Russian roulette with the blowfish [also known as a pufferfish].</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">“The chefs dissect out the gallbladder to remove the toxins - but leave a tiny bit of the bile duct intact so the diners feel the buzz of poison on their lips as they swallow.”</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">The doctor recalled one fellow employee saying, “Too little poison and you don’t get the tingle.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">“Too much and you die. Apparently, the rich passengers love that kind of thing.”</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">The poisonous parts of the puffer fish can leave a tingling feeling that turns into numbness around the mouth, then paralysis and eventually death by respiratory failure. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Obviously, Macfarlane’s cruise refused to run the risk of putting a traveller’s life in danger, so instead of taking a deathly route - chefs found an incredible but disturbing way to fool holidayers into thinking they are getting what they ask for. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">“[The chef] gets rid of all the dangerous stuff and just dabs a bit of mouth ulcer cream on what’s left.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">“Ready-made tingle with far less risk of sudden death and a lawsuit.”</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">A fellow employee said: “It’s a win-win situation. The passengers think they’re dying when in fact they’re just cleaning up cold sores.”</span></p>

Cruising

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Ponant: It’s French for inspired luxury expedition cruising

<p>First impressions count, as we know, which is why I was struck when entering the foyer area onboard one of Ponant’s four near-identical sister-ships, <em>Le Soleal</em>, while embarking recently on one of their <span><a href="https://au.ponant.com">luxury expedition cruises</a></span>. No sign of vintage brass portholes, no ubiquitous aroma of marine oil, paint and varnish that often permeates ships ‘of a certain age’.</p> <p>The reception area is light and bright, spacious, more boutique hotel foyer than fusty club. Taupe colours and light grain timbers set the scene reflected throughout the ship in public areas, as well as in the staterooms and suites. The only timber panelling is in the spa.</p> <p><img style="width: 500px; height: 281.25px;" src="/media/7829420/ponant.jpg" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/e74f6b65bc694dab8354d9b38199ce9e" /></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><em>© PONANT Christophe Dugied</em></p> <p>The desk staff is bright, energetic, helpful. The crew immaculately presented.</p> <p>“Welcome aboard.” Thank you, Captain. He is in evidence throughout the voyage.</p> <p><strong>The world leader in luxury expeditions</strong></p> <p>Owning and operating the youngest fleet of luxury expedition ships in the world, Ponant takes cruising the world’s seven seas seriously – 30 years of consistent growth is reflected in the company taking more passengers to the polar zones than any other cruise company. Their ships explore the globe with hundreds of voyages a year stretching well beyond the Antarctic and Northern Europe to warmer destinations such as the Mediterranean, South Pacific, <span><a href="https://au.ponant.com/exploring-kimberley/">the Kimberley</a></span> <span>coast in Australia</span>, Asia and more.</p> <p>This has helped establish Ponant as the recognised world leader of luxury expedition cruising. To maintain this position, they are in the process of building six new slightly smaller ‘Explorer Class’ ships, each with just 92 staterooms and suites, all with ocean view and balcony. While the world has gone mad for behemoths, Ponant finds good reason to reduce the size of their ships, without compromising space or facilities.</p> <p><strong>Small ships, big benefits</strong></p> <p>Compact external dimensions create cruising opportunities denied larger ships, providing the sort of intimate experiences us ‘over-60s’ seek. All Ponant’s ships are small enough to access and moor in places few others can. Passing under Tower Bridge in central London to moor next to <em>HMS Belfast</em> on the Thames, along with squeezing through the famed Corinth canal (with barely a metre spare on each side at one point) while en-route to or from Athens is on my ‘must do’ list for future cruises.</p> <p><em><img style="width: 0px; height: 0px; display: block; margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;" src="/media/7829418/ponant-4.jpg" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/b073e40aa11545f185a1b963396e3bc4" /></em></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><em>© PONANT Matthieu Germain</em></p> <p>Small ship experiences offer unexpected benefits. Take accessing the centre of Saigon in Vietnam and St Petersburg in Northern Europe, stepping off the ships to be in the middle of the action, while large ships are forced to moor at the mouth of rivers and arrange ground transport to shuffle passengers to and from the city.</p> <p>Likewise, your senses will be amplified when in expedition mode while unfolding the secrets of the Amazon, the Russian Far East, Northwest Passage, Black Sea or, for example, mingling with rarely-visited tribes in New Guinea – unmarked turn-offs revealing destinations-of-dreams.</p> <p><strong>Expedition cruises with an edge</strong></p> <p>A growing number of voyages feature a National Geographic Expeditions guest expert and a Nat Geo endorsed photographer. This additional duo adds a further dimension to Ponant’s expedition cruises; working with the regular onboard expedition teams, they provide additional specialist insight into the places visited.</p> <p>Depending on the designated Ponant National Geographic voyage selected there may, for example, be a specialist vulcanologist, glaciologist, anthropologist or geomorphologist onboard to add further perspectives.</p> <p>The photographer will share experiences, perhaps relating how he or she managed to capture a special series of stunning images – offering insight into how guests, too, can improve their photographic skills. You may as well learn from the best, whether enthusiastic amateur or smartphone happy snapper.</p> <p><img style="width: 500px; height: 281.25px;" src="/media/7829416/ponant-2.jpg" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/0266e04aa4cb48818017ae03323dc66a" /></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><em>© PONANT Nick Rains</em></p> <p>With new ships come innovative designs, for example Ponant’s world exclusive <em>‘Blue Eye’</em>, an underwater lounge with cetacean-inspired glass windows and aquatic microphones to capture the sights and sounds of the surrounding marine environment. Add to this the very latest in award-winning eco-sensitivity, spanning from tin-free anti-fouling hull paint to onboard/onshore recycling, the exclusive use of high-grade marine fuel and guest briefings on the environments encountered. In 2021, the launch of a new polar exploration ship utilising low emission LNG and electricity hybrid power will herald a new era in marine eco-sensitivity. With Ponant, beauty isn’t skin deep.</p> <p><img style="width: 500px; height: 281.25px;" src="/media/7829421/ponant-6.jpg" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/87bd1bed034945c1b5a5fa954d2308b9" /></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><em>© PONANT Laurence Fischer</em></p> <p>On my recent luxury expedition voyage, guests onboard had joined the ship from around the world, a core of French supplemented by guests from Australia and New Zealand, the UK and USA, Switzerland and Germany, Japan … a commingling of nationalities. This creates a United Nations of travel, with animated interchange, points of view and perspectives creating fascinating conversations and interaction, whether on a Zodiac heading to shore with Expedition Team members or sharing a table at dinner. For those travellers who enjoy a global perspective, these voyages are the place to be.</p> <p><strong>The French touch</strong></p> <p>Of course, Ponant is French, and that means a relaxed elegant style balanced by sophisticated ambiance throughout, including nice touches such as Hermes toiletries for all, daily fresh patisserie, real French butter and, not unexpectedly, a variety of exquisite cheeses. The gastronomique restaurant offerings are influenced by Ducasse Conseil. Veuve Clicquot is sloshed around at functions, (while fine ‘everyday’ champagne is all part of the Open Bar offerings), along with fine French wines, occasional treats such as caviar tastings… and, agreeably, no penguin suits needed onboard, although you will see plenty ashore in the Antarctic regions.</p> <p><img style="width: 500px; height: 281.25px;" src="/media/7829419/ponant-5.jpg" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/707dfc792903427e926679fc5104481b" /></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><em>© PONANT François Lefebvre</em></p> <p>For me, fulfilling travel is a combination of elements, Ponant representing the epitome of modern-day expedition cruising, where luxury merges with adventure. It starts with the quality of the ships, the fine accommodation, unobtrusive service and attention to detail, then raises a level with the range of facilities, food and wine all adding to the pleasure and enjoyment of the experience.</p> <p>Espresso to start the day, explore ashore, spa treatment, Arpège by night.</p> <p><strong><img style="width: 500px; height: 281.25px;" src="/media/7829417/ponant-3.jpg" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/785920929e6e4810bf8bd0598bf1339e" /></strong></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><em>© PONANT Arnaud Delayen-Kotor</em></p> <p>Perhaps at this stage it is just as important to know what Ponant ships do not have – casinos, jostling queues, crowds, shopping malls, go-kart tracks, faux climbing walls, happy hour or schoolies. What is offered is luxury quality yacht-style cruising and exciting expeditions, all the while enjoying French ambiance and a certain<em> je-ne-sais-quoi</em>.</p> <p>Is PONANT the apotheosis of luxury and expedition cruising? There’s only one way to find out.</p> <p> </p>

Cruising

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Mockery or bad timing? Cruise staff member waves giant fake hand as passengers miss the boat

<p>Whether it was intentional or not, a cruise ship staff member picked an unfortunate moment to pull out a giant fake hand and wave goodbye to spectators watching the ship disembark from the shore.</p> <p>Just as two unfortunate passengers realised their cruise ship was sailing away without them, a crew member decided to wave a fake hand as the pair looked completely helpless on a dock at St Maarten, Netherlands.</p> <p>But nothing could be done, as the only option the tourists had was to figure out a way to get to the next port on their own.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><iframe src="https://www.facebook.com/plugins/video.php?href=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.facebook.com%2Fcrucerospuertorico%2Fvideos%2F688479485001630%2F&amp;show_text=0&amp;width=266" width="266" height="476" style="border: none; overflow: hidden;" scrolling="no" frameborder="0" allowtransparency="true" allowfullscreen="true"></iframe></p> <p>Footage of the unfortunate incident was posted on Facebook, as it shows the Royal Caribbean cruise ship setting sail from the pier in Philipsburg, St. Maarten. Looking at the video, it seems that the couple had missed boarding by just a few minutes.</p> <p>As the phone camera focuses on the distressed duo, it soon shows a crew member on the ship waving around a giant fake hand that has the word “BYE” written on it.</p> <p>It’s possible the action was a result of bad timing, as the intention still remains unclear. </p> <p>Footage also shows other passengers on the cruise noticing the couple, shouting, “They missed it!” to help spread the word.</p>

Cruising

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Cruise staff reveal the hardest part about working on a ship

<p><span style="font-weight: 400;">While working on a cruise ship can have its perks, there are always downsides to every job. Afterall, working on a moving vessel for months at a time can take its toll. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">A former cruise ship worker has shared their perspective on what makes working on a cruise ship so difficult. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Joshua Kinser told </span><a href="https://www.express.co.uk/travel/cruise/1157814/cruise-ship-crew-job-cruises-working-holidays"><span style="font-weight: 400;">Express UK</span></a><span style="font-weight: 400;"> it can be a particularly difficult job in many ways. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">“There are many difficulties and challenges that cruise ship crew members must endure on their lengthy contracts at sea,” he said.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">“The monotony of the job becomes tiresome,” he explained. “The food served to the crew can sometimes be about as appetising as the seaweed that gets tangled in the cruise ship propellers.”</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">“I wish I could have told passengers how much I wanted a lobster tail or some of the great food that they were eating in the passenger dining rooms,” Kinser added.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">“I know it may seem petty to some people out there, kind of a first-world problem sort of thing, but after three months eating the same slop that is served on some of these ships, most employees just want a taste of the wonderful food that the passengers eat.”</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Not only is the food  unappetising for the most part, there is also a homesickness that can be guaranteed on the job for many of the employees. Working away from home for months at a time can cause a real strain, Kinser explained. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">“The isolation from friends and family and one’s life on land can be very difficult for some to deal with at times.”</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">One upside is getting to know new people from different parts of the world, however Joshua says it is not for everyone. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">“Adjusting to the very different culture and rhythm of life as a cruise ship crew member can be difficult for some,” he said.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">“Being on ship time and having your daily schedule dictated at all times can take some serious getting used to.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">“This is especially the case if you are a person who has lived most of your life in a country that affords you a considerable degree of autonomy, independence, and free will, or if you’re just a stubborn and oppositional person by nature in general.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">“If you don’t deal with authority well, you may not be very happy working on a cruise ship.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">“All of this is difficult at times, and the degree of difficulty changes with what ship you are assigned to.”</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">The best part about working on a cruise ship though? </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">“There is a lot to celebrate in ship life: The travel is tops of course,” Kinser said.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">“I was able to travel all around the world aboard cruise ships and I am forever grateful to the cruise ship companies for the opportunity to do so.”</span></p>

Cruising

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Heartbreaking news for Hawaii’s Waikiki beach

<p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Recent climate reports predict that one of Hawaii’s most famous beaches - Waikiki - is at risk of being underwater within the next 15-20 years due to rising sea levels. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">The 2017 Hawaii Climate Commission noted that data shows “Honolulu is expected to begin seeing regular flooding of the urban core in as little as 15 years."</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">This detrimental loss can mean $2 billion decline in annual revenue and if hurricanes hit the beloved island then damage could be in the tens of billions. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">The state’s Senate and House of Representatives are hoping to pass a measure that will create a “climate protection pilot project” for the mesmerising Honolulu shoreline that is desperately in danger. </span></p> <blockquote style="background: #FFF; border: 0; border-radius: 3px; box-shadow: 0 0 1px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.5),0 1px 10px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.15); margin: 1px; max-width: 540px; min-width: 326px; padding: 0; width: calc(100% - 2px);" class="instagram-media" data-instgrm-permalink="https://www.instagram.com/p/B0o8rXZBnx3/" data-instgrm-version="12"> <div style="padding: 16px;"> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: row; align-items: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; flex-grow: 0; height: 40px; margin-right: 14px; width: 40px;"></div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: column; flex-grow: 1; justify-content: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; margin-bottom: 6px; width: 100px;"></div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; width: 60px;"></div> </div> </div> <div style="padding: 19% 0;"></div> <div style="display: block; height: 50px; margin: 0 auto 12px; width: 50px;"></div> <div style="padding-top: 8px;"> <div style="color: #3897f0; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: 550; line-height: 18px;">View this post on Instagram</div> </div> <p style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; line-height: 17px; margin-bottom: 0; margin-top: 8px; overflow: hidden; padding: 8px 0 7px; text-align: center; text-overflow: ellipsis; white-space: nowrap;"><a style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: normal; line-height: 17px; text-decoration: none;" rel="noopener" href="https://www.instagram.com/p/B0o8rXZBnx3/" target="_blank">A post shared by Kathy Manzella (@kathymanzella)</a> on Aug 1, 2019 at 4:28pm PDT</p> </div> </blockquote> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">The project, ‘HB 1478’  would address the threat of "sea level rise, floodwater, storms, and other impacts of a rapidly changing climate."</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">The bill will also aim to begin research into creating a carbon tax. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">While the beautiful island is under threat and is extremely vulnerable to the rising sea levels, stronger storm surges and higher tides - lawmakers are pushing for change and taking action. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Rep. Chris Lee, Democratic legislator said he and other colleagues are teaching other state leaders about Hawaii’s issues and are helping to create policies to resist the negative impacts the country are facing. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">"We've worked with a dozen states going down this pathway," he said.</span></p>

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Cruise employee reveals all: The codeword you do not want to hear

<p><span style="font-weight: 400;">As cruise ship holidays become more popular each year, more cruise crew members are hard at work ensuring travellers are having the trip of their dreams. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">However, there are always unpleasantries at every workplace, and holiday resorts are no exception. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">One industry insider has revealed the one cruise codeword staff use when describing an unfortunate event. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Brandon Presser, temporary director of Royal Caribbean’s largest ship, </span><span style="font-weight: 400;">Harmony of the Seas</span><span style="font-weight: 400;">, told </span><span style="font-weight: 400;">Bloomberg</span><span style="font-weight: 400;"> there are codewords centered around passenger illness and ship emergencies. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">In Presser’s time working with over 2,200 crew members, he said there was one codeword that no employee ever wants to hear - which is “PVI.”</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Presser said it means “public vomiting incident” and unfortunately happens more than we would like to think. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">In just five days while travelling, the former cruise director said there was a record of three PVI’s in that time. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">While this is no reason to rule out a beautiful cruise holiday, it might be the codeword to keep an ear out for so you don’t ever have to see a “public vomiting incident” while trying to enjoy your trip. </span></p>

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Cruise ship brawl “fuelled” by unlimited alcohol package

<p><span style="font-weight: 400;">A mass brawl on a cruise ship is said to have been fuelled by passengers believed to be over-indulging in a </span><span style="font-weight: 400;">“15 free drinks” offer that went horribly wrong. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Two cruisers, a 41-year-old woman and a 43-year-old man, were arrested last Friday after a fight broke out on a cruise ship returning from a week-long journey to the Norwegian fjords.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Six people were injured and one eyewitness told </span><a href="https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-7300469/YouTuber-41-one-two-people-arrested-mass-brawl-kicked-P-O-cruise-liner.html"><span style="font-weight: 400;">Mail Online</span></a><span style="font-weight: 400;"> that they were left covered in blood after plates and furniture were thrown around the room. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Two groups of passengers began arguing around 1:30am in one of the ship’s restaurants on the 16th floor. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">One traveller described the experience as “Benidorm on Sea” as many passengers pay for the unlimited drinks package (15 drinks maximum between 6am and 6pm).</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">A female passenger said her and her son were awoken by the aftermath of the messy brawl. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">“From the moment we embarked on the ship we found many of the other guests to be rude, have zero manners or respect for others,” she said.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">“The boat was basically Benidorm on Sea with a me, me, me attitude. We found many people were there purely to drink as much as they could with their unlimited drinks packages.”</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">US-based maritime lawyer Jim Walker, told </span><a href="https://www.thetimes.co.uk/"><span style="font-weight: 400;">The Times</span></a> <span style="font-weight: 400;">that the cases he dealt with involved drink packages offered by a number of cruise companies. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">“Are we seeing a correlation between drinks packages and violence? Generally we are,” he said.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">“We’ve had cases where passengers have been involved in bar fights and the alleged assailants have had a drinks package. They’ve said that they drank all 15 drinks, that they didn’t want to leave any money on the table.”</span></p>

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How you can see Australia’s iconic Heart Reef up close and personal

<p><span style="font-weight: 400;">It doesn’t get much better than the beautiful and mesmerising Heart Reef – and now, for the first time ever, people are able to experience it up close and personal.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Until recent months, the only way travellers were able to experience the Heart Reef was way above in the sky for a stunning scenic flight. </span></p> <blockquote style="background: #FFF; border: 0; border-radius: 3px; box-shadow: 0 0 1px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.5),0 1px 10px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.15); margin: 1px; max-width: 540px; min-width: 326px; padding: 0; width: calc(100% - 2px);" class="instagram-media" data-instgrm-permalink="https://www.instagram.com/p/BysEZFRFSiR/" data-instgrm-version="12"> <div style="padding: 16px;"> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: row; align-items: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; flex-grow: 0; height: 40px; margin-right: 14px; width: 40px;"></div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: column; flex-grow: 1; justify-content: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; margin-bottom: 6px; width: 100px;"></div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; width: 60px;"></div> </div> </div> <div style="padding: 19% 0;"></div> <div style="display: block; height: 50px; margin: 0 auto 12px; width: 50px;"></div> <div style="padding-top: 8px;"> <div style="color: #3897f0; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: 550; line-height: 18px;">View this post on Instagram</div> </div> <p style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; line-height: 17px; margin-bottom: 0; margin-top: 8px; overflow: hidden; padding: 8px 0 7px; text-align: center; text-overflow: ellipsis; white-space: nowrap;"><a style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: normal; line-height: 17px; text-decoration: none;" rel="noopener" href="https://www.instagram.com/p/BysEZFRFSiR/" target="_blank">A post shared by SALTY WiNGS (@saltywings)</a> on Jun 14, 2019 at 4:30am PDT</p> </div> </blockquote> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Now, after a decade of development and $2 million spent to make an impossible mission possible, visitors will now get the rare opportunity to see it up close with the launch of Whitsundays Heart Island. </span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">What makes it a sight to behold isn’t just the fact that it’s in the most iconic destination filled with privacy and solitude, but travellers can also take pride in the fact that they are one of the first people to have exclusive access to the luxury experience. </span></p> <blockquote style="background: #FFF; border: 0; border-radius: 3px; box-shadow: 0 0 1px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.5),0 1px 10px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.15); margin: 1px; max-width: 540px; min-width: 326px; padding: 0; width: calc(100% - 2px);" class="instagram-media" data-instgrm-permalink="https://www.instagram.com/p/Bz7MTAfnBDG/" data-instgrm-version="12"> <div style="padding: 16px;"> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: row; align-items: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 50%; flex-grow: 0; height: 40px; margin-right: 14px; width: 40px;"></div> <div style="display: flex; flex-direction: column; flex-grow: 1; justify-content: center;"> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; margin-bottom: 6px; width: 100px;"></div> <div style="background-color: #f4f4f4; border-radius: 4px; flex-grow: 0; height: 14px; width: 60px;"></div> </div> </div> <div style="padding: 19% 0;"></div> <div style="display: block; height: 50px; margin: 0 auto 12px; width: 50px;"></div> <div style="padding-top: 8px;"> <div style="color: #3897f0; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: 550; line-height: 18px;">View this post on Instagram</div> </div> <p style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; line-height: 17px; margin-bottom: 0; margin-top: 8px; overflow: hidden; padding: 8px 0 7px; text-align: center; text-overflow: ellipsis; white-space: nowrap;"><a style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: normal; line-height: 17px; text-decoration: none;" rel="noopener" href="https://www.instagram.com/p/Bz7MTAfnBDG/" target="_blank">A post shared by Hamilton Island (@hamiltonisland)</a> on Jul 14, 2019 at 9:59pm PDT</p> </div> </blockquote> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">"Heart Island provides our guests with an unsurpassable way to explore the wonders of the Great Barrier Reef," Bourke said in a statement.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">"Since being purchased by the Oatley family in 2003, Hamilton Island has worked to become a world-class destination, epitomised by our six-star luxury resort qualia. We are proud to offer this preeminent experience for our guests in partnership with Hamilton Island Air."</span></p>

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Valencia: The golden city of Spain

<p>There’s a European city that basks in a golden sun on the Mediterranean Sea, where crystal blue waters lap sandy beaches and the streets are paved in marble.</p> <p>On warm sunny days plazas ring with the buzz of locals cooling themselves with their very own version of iced-coffee, horchata (which is best experienced at <a href="http://www.casadelaorxata.com/">Casa de L’Orxata</a> in the Mercat de Colon).</p> <p>This city is Valencia, the third largest in Spain and one that is often overlooked by tourists who head to the wonder of Barcelona or to dive into the heart of Spanish culture in Madrid.</p> <p>But, if you scratch its surface, you’ll discover a city bursting with life and where the locals have a real zest for life.</p> <p>The first stop for any tourist to Valencia will be the city centre where you’ll find its three main plazas: Plaza de Ayuntamiento, Plaza de la Reina and Plaza de la Virgen.</p> <p>While in the centre, be sure to visit the newly renovated post office – <a href="http://www.valencia-cityguide.com/tourist-attractions/monuments/edificio-de-correos.html">Edifico de Correos</a> where the stained glass ceiling is breathtaking and also the <a href="http://www.catedraldevalencia.es/en/">Catedral de Valencia</a>, where for a couple of euros you can climb the bell tower for a bird’s eye view of the city below.</p> <p>In the centre, you’ll also find El Carmen, Valencia’s old town where you can lose yourself forever in the maze of restaurants, boutique shops and small bodegas. For a truly Valencian experience, wander the small laneways, taking in the atmosphere and enjoying the graffiti that adds a mix of colour and modernism to Spain’s ancient past.</p> <p>Feeling hungry? El Carmen offers some of the best tapas Valencia has to offer, with <a href="https://www.facebook.com/pages/Tasquita-La-Estrecha/1556031774658623">Tasquita la Estrecha</a>serving awesome food that comes on small plates.</p> <p>Adjoining El Carmen is the Jardines del Turia – Valencia’s now waterless river, which doubles as one of the largest green urban parks in Europe. This recreational area is best explored on two wheels using the <a href="http://www.valenbisi.com/">Valenbisi</a>, Valencia’s very own bike hire and ride scheme.</p> <p>At the end of Jardines del Turia sits Valencia’s tribute to modern day architecture – the <a href="http://www.cac.es/en/home.html">City of Arts and Sciences</a> precinct. This is home to the city’s Science Centre, Aquarium, Arts Centre and IMAX theatre and while a day could easily be lost exploring its inner cavities, simply spending an hour wandering around the precinct is equally impressive.</p> <p>Any trip to Valencia would be incomplete without a visit to one of its many beaches and La Malvarrosa is Valencia’s main beach, which is easily accessed using the modern metro system. While at the beach, be sure to drop into the <a href="http://marinabeachclub.com/en/">Marina Beach Club</a> to experience Valencia’s gift to the world – paella, which any Spaniard will tell you should only ever be eaten at lunch.</p> <p>As you watch the beautiful people submerge their bodies in the infinity pool, order Valencia’s own version of sangria, Agua de Valencia, a delicious but potent mix of gin, vodka, cava and orange juice.</p> <p>As night descends on the city – head to the barrios of Ruzafa or Gran Via area where you can witness first-hand Valencia’s party reputation.</p> <p>To ensure you have the stamina to sustain the long hours ahead – grab a good coffee (which is never easy to find in Spain) and something sweet at Valencia’s answer to <em>Charlie and the Chocolate Factory</em> – <a href="https://www.facebook.com/DulceDeLecheRuzafa/">Dulce de Leche</a>.</p> <p>As ten o’clock ticks over, it’s dinner time in Spain and for a tasty cheap, eat head to <a href="https://www.facebook.com/barmaremeua/">Mare Meua</a> - a little pinxos bar where you select bite-size morsels to enjoy with an icy vino or cerveza as you sit with the cool people on the terraza outside.</p> <p>For those wanting something upmarket, head to one of Valencia’s Michelin starred restaurants <a href="http://www.restaurante-riff.com/">Riff </a>where head Chef Bernd H. Knoller will personally explain the explosion of flavour that will please your tastebuds. Alternatively, for those with an aversion to meat, <a href="http://grupocopenhagen.com/restaurante/copenhagen/">Copenhagen</a> offers some of the only (and best) vegan food in Spain.</p> <p>Finally, you cannot go to Spain without a night out on the town and Ruzafa will not disappoint with some of Valencia’s best bars and <em>discotecas</em>. For a mixed crowd that guarantees sore feet from carving up the dance floor, <a href="https://www.facebook.com/PiccadillyDowntownClub/">Picaddilly</a> is the place to go.</p> <p>But remember, nightclubs in Spain don’t open until 1, they won’t get busy until 4 and they stay open until 8… so you are in for a long night. After all, this is Spain where everything happens three hours later than everywhere else!</p> <p><em>Written by Jason Walsh. Republished with permission of <a href="https://www.wyza.com.au/articles/travel/valencia-the-golden-city-of-spain.aspx">Wyza.com.au.</a></em></p>

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How to avoid the post-holiday blues

<p>We all love a break from the daily grind. Whether it’s a six-week European tour, a road trip across the United States, or an island escape, there’s nothing more exciting than the anticipation of an exotic holiday or a well-deserved trip. But as the sun-kissed tan starts to fade, and the holiday is well and truly over, it can be especially hard to ease back into everyday life.</p> <p>In a 2010 study involving more than 1,500 Dutch travellers, researchers found that vacationers are happier while on holiday (a given) but most are not happier afterwards. This finding is in contrast to the common assumption that travelling is good for us, relieves our stress, and makes us happier beings overall.</p> <p>According to the study, the length of a holiday doesn’t seem to affect this outcome, either.</p> <p>“It is not surprising that a holiday trip does not have a prolonged effect on happiness, since most vacationers have to return to work or other daily tasks and consequently fall back into their normal routine fairly quickly,” the authors say.</p> <p>But could there be another reason why so many of us don’t feel happier, or even sated, after a holiday? Does the experience count for nothing?</p> <p>Anthony Bianco, a popular Brisbane-based travel blogger at The Travel Tart, says he experiences post-travel blues every time he returns from an overseas trip.</p> <p>“I’ve never experienced ‘culture shock’ when going somewhere new, but I always experience ‘reverse culture shock’,” he says.</p> <p>“When I come back home, I've seen it all before and I'm grumpy for days,” he adds.</p> <p>The concept of ‘reverse culture shock’ was introduced in the 1960s and refers to the difficulty one experiences when re-adapting to life back home, for example after a six month stint abroad. You may find that, now that you’re back home, you’re more irritable or frustrated at every day activities, which in comparison to your wide-eyed travels seem even more mundane.</p> <p>Ultimately, whether you’re returning home from a long weekend escape, or an epic travel adventure, it’s important to take care of yourself. Try these tips to help cope with post-travel or holiday blues.</p> <p><strong>Document your holiday</strong><br />Keep a travel diary, print out your favourite photos, make an album, or dedicate a blog to chronicle your adventures. Not only will this be a nice reminder, but also a way to keep family and friends interested in all your travel stories for longer. Or take a leaf out of Helen Carver’s book, literally. She’s the thrill-seeking Brit who, at the age of 50, quit her job, rented out her home and packed up her life for a whirlwind adventure with her 19 year old daughter. She wrote all about it in her humorous travel book, and then went on to start a blog about life after 50.</p> <p><strong>Plan a stay-cation</strong><br />You could be tempted to book another holiday overseas or interstate, but why not plan an adventure in your hometown. You don’t have to leave the country to escape the ordinary. Try new activities that can be incorporated into your every day routine for a happier outlook on post-holiday life.</p> <p><strong>Recognise the symptoms of anxiety or stress</strong><br />Even if you had a great time away, if you were stressed or anxious before your holiday, these feelings may re-emerge upon your return. Some common symptoms of anxiety include hot and cold flushes, racing heart, tightening of the chest, snowballing worries, and obsessive thinking and compulsive behaviour. Symptoms can vary from person to person, according to <a href="http://www.beyondblue.org.au/">Beyond Blue</a>, but the important thing is to seek treatment to control the anxiety before it controls you. To better understand anxiety, a good place to start is the <a href="http://www.beyondblue.org.au/">Beyond Blue website</a>.</p> <p><em>Written by Mahsa Fratantoni. Republished with permission of </em><a href="https://www.wyza.com.au/articles/health/wellbeing/how-to-avoid-the-post-travel-blues.aspx"><em>Wyza.com.au.</em></a></p>

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Answers to your 10 biggest questions about Antarctica

<p>David McGonigal has been to Antarctica more than 100 times and wrote the definitive book on the southern continent. Here are his answers to common questions.</p> <p><strong>Should I go?</strong><br />I consider Antarctica the most remarkable destination in the world. But others regard it as a cold wilderness full of penguins. Don’t go if you don’t want to but if you want to, you won’t be disappointed.</p> <p><strong>South Georgia – yes or no?</strong> <br />It might come as a surprise that there’s a range of options for holidays in Antarctica. The great majority leave from the bottom of South America and cruise to Antarctica and back over about 10 days. If you wish to cross the Antarctic Circle or venture into the Weddell Sea expect to be on board for about 12 days or more.</p> <p>The big choice is whether to include South Georgia because that adds at least a week and more sea days to the voyage. I’d unequivocally say “do it if you can afford it”. This island crowded with penguins, seals and albatross is the most remarkable wildlife experience in the world. Much of those documentaries of king penguins to the horizon were taken in South Georgia. The only reason not to include it is if you want an excuse to return south again.</p> <p>An increasingly popular option is to fly one way to King George Island and join a ship there. It’s fast and avoids the sea days but you don’t get to venture far off a well-trodden route.</p> <p><strong>When to go?</strong> <br />The peak Antarctic season is January but that’s more a result of home holiday seasons than Antarctica itself. The whole Antarctic season runs during the brief Antarctic summer from November to March. When to go depends what you are most interested in.</p> <ul> <li>November: lots of snow, penguins on pristine snow, maybe some places still iced in and inaccessible.</li> <li>December: penguins nesting, snow and ice clearing.</li> <li>January: some penguin chicks around, whales more frequent towards the end of the month. </li> <li>February: chicks fledging, adults moulting, colonies becoming messy and smelly, lots of whales (mainly humpbacks).</li> <li>March: penguin colonies emptying but whales well fed and curious around the ship and Zodiacs.</li> </ul> <p>If you’re going to South Georgia, there are still some quite aggressive male fur seals at the start of summer but the beach chaos has calmed down by the new year.</p> <p>Because it’s summer it doesn’t really get dark so there’s no opportunity to see the <em>aurora australis</em>.</p> <p><strong>What to pack?</strong> <br />You’ll get a packing list so follow it. Check if gumboots and wet weather gear is provided. You’ll spend a lot of time on the water so it’s more important to have good waterproof gear (especially gloves – ideally two pair) than extra warm gear. It’s easy to get clothes washed on board.</p> <p><strong>Why do most go from South America?</strong> <br />From Ushuaia, the South Shetland Islands and the Antarctic Peninsula are about two sea days away. However, from Tasmania or NZ’s South Island it’ll take about five days to reach East Antarctica. So 10 days of your holiday will be taken up getting there and back – against just a day and a half air travelling to get to the South American southern ports.</p> <p><strong>Will I get seasick?</strong><br />Unless you are pregnant and can’t take any medication the answer should be “no”. There’s a wide range of treatments (up to an injection) to prevent seasickness and some less-effective ones that may cure it. Many passengers arrive on board with jet lag and travel exhaustion and largely sleep across the whole Drake Passage.</p> <p>The Drake Passage has a reputation as the roughest stretch of water in the world. However, that’s not all the time. Roughly, I’d say you have about a 25 per cent chance of experiencing a flat “Drake Lake”, about a 60 per cent chance of a rolling sea and about a 15 per cent chance of encountering an exciting Southern Ocean storm.</p> <p>Also, while a substantial proportion of passengers may feel queasy on the sail south, once you get there the ship is stable and all are well. Over the next few days you find your “sea legs” so few of those who are unwell on the voyage south are sick on the voyage home.</p> <p><strong>Are there any hotels?</strong> <br />As a general rule “no” but some of the bases have some simple accommodation that could be regarded as a hotel. Effectively, all accommodation is ship-based but you may be given the option to sleep on the ice one night – it won’t be restful or comfortable but it will be memorable.</p> <p><strong>Am I adversely affecting Antarctica?</strong> <br />Every Antarctic operator works from the IAATO wildlife and environmental guidelines to minimise their impact. In my experience, every staff member and expedition leader is passionate about Antarctica and works very hard to ensure the trip has as little impact as possible on the environment.</p> <p><strong>How cold is it?</strong> <br />It’s not that cold – about the same as a ski holiday in Australia. Expect temperatures between about -1°C and +3°C. Of course, you may encounter colder conditions if you venture further south or head down at the end of the summer.</p> <p><strong>What will I see?</strong> <br />You’ll be in the greatest wilderness on earth. Humans are irrelevant here and can’t survive without technology. There’s a remarkable sense of space. More specifically you’ll see ice in all its forms – glaciers and ice cliffs, icebergs and maybe sheets of sea ice.</p> <p>On the way down, albatross will accompany the ship and once you’re there you’ll be greeted by penguins, seals and whales and a few flying birds like kelp gulls and snowy sheathbills.</p> <p>Most of all you’ll discover every shade of blue, green and white within the clefts in the ice. Most staff state that they came down for the wildlife but keep returning for the ice.</p> <p><em>Written by David McGonigal. Republished with permission of <a href="https://www.wyza.com.au/articles/travel/answers-to-your-10-biggest-questions-about-antarctica.aspx">Wyza.com.au.</a></em></p> <p> </p>

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Sights unseen: Top 10 must-see European destinations

<p>Bursting with beauty, history and culture are a multitude of intimate and lesser-travelled European destinations that every keen traveller must see in their lifetime.</p> <p>From Greece’s colonnaded Parthenon to a finger-like peninsula whose highest peaks are home to Orthodox Christian monasteries, your next epic and equally dreamy summer holiday escape to Europe is right at your fingertips.</p> <p>Here are 10 magical destinations you must experience for yourself and add to your bucket list.</p> <p><strong>1. Tallin, Estonia</strong></p> <p><strong><img style="width: 0px; height: 0px;" src="/media/7828630/viking-cruise-do-not-use-10.jpg" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/07d804167a394c32a8856beea18163aa" /></strong></p> <p>Estonia may be one of the smallest countries in Europe yet it boasts a culture and history as vibrant and insightful as any other. In Tallin, the charming capital of Estonia located on the coast of the Baltic Sea, you can immerse yourself in a number of experiences – everything from a brush with old civilisation and the meticulously-kept medieval streets of the Old Town to suppers and heavenly homemade cuisines. This includes cinnamon roasted almonds, which are a must-try from an Old Town street store or treat yourself to the special sweet taste of marzipan that holds an immensely fascinating and meaningful history.</p> <p>Once under the rule of Russia, the newly independent country is the perfect place to journey through for a touch of the old and the new. Those who admire fine art must add the Kadriorg Art Museum at the Baroque Kadriorg Palace to their to-do list, which was once a summer home for Catherine I of Russia.</p> <p>The perfect blend of modern culture and ancient history, stop in during an immersive <a href="https://www.vikingcruises.com.au/oceans/cruise-destinations/baltic/viking-homelands/index.html?utm_medium=referral&amp;utm_source=oversixty&amp;utm_campaign=sights-unseen-editorial-tallin">15-day Baltic Sea journey</a> which will see you exploring northern  Europe with Viking Cruises.</p> <p><strong>2. Puglia, Italy</strong></p> <p>Roaming around Puglia, better known as the “boot” of Italy, might be the most beautiful view to cast your eyes upon. The white-washed towns of Ostuni and Alberobello are two cities visitors may never want to leave as the tree-lined, sunny streets are just one part of what makes <a href="https://www.vikingcruises.com.au/oceans/cruise-destinations/western-mediterranean/italian-sojourn/index.html?utm_medium=referral&amp;utm_source=oversixty&amp;utm_campaign=sights-unseen-editorial-puglia">Puglia a sight to behold.</a></p> <p>The beloved city, which is responsible for over 60 per cent of Italy’s olive oil production, is home to centuries-old olive trees. The history built from beneath the soil of the pristine city should be more than enough to entice any traveller to feast on the Pugliese cuisine.</p> <p>The Romanesque Basilica of St Nicholas is a must see for all culture-hungry travellers. Built late in the 11<sup>th</sup> century, the stunning church took nearly 100 years to complete. With clean, simple lines and cream coloured stone, this cathedral is well worth exploring for yourself. </p> <p><strong>3. Troy, Turkey</strong></p> <p> <img style="width: 0px; height: 0px;" src="/media/7828628/viking-cruise-do-not-use-12.jpg" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/eb2f7be66ef148b88c7e6accce30cdaf" /></p> <p>An archaeological wonder, the story of Troy is one that has amazed and astounded for generations.  Located in Western Turkey, the ancient ruins of Troy are a marvel that date back to <a rel="noopener" href="https://www.vikingcruises.com.au/oceans/cruise-destinations/western-mediterranean/ancient-adriatic-treasures/index.html?utm_medium=referral&amp;utm_source=oversixty&amp;utm_campaign=sights-unseen-editorial-troy" target="_blank">approximately </a>3000 BC and have been preserved so remarkably well, visitors will be able to experience a genuine glimpse of what the region’s former glory was once like.</p> <p>The legendary ancient city was made famous by <em>The Iliad – </em>an epic poem written by Greek author Homer, who in this particular body of work detailed specific events of the final weeks of the Trojan War. The incredible prose has become an iconic piece of work and is considered the earliest writings in the whole of the Western literary tradition.</p> <p>Culture-hungry travellers should not pass up the privilege to witness the ancient ruins of Troy for themselves. They offer an immersive insight into a world that once was but no longer exists and are surrounded by legends and myths all pointing to the fascinating and meaningful history readily available.</p> <p>Along with visiting the glorious ruins of Troy, travellers will be able to visit the tranquil memorial site from World War I, the battlefields of Gallipoli.</p> <p>The long-fought campaign was one of the deadliest and extensive battles fought during the war and has a sombre history, which you can retrace with a ferry ride across the Dardanelles straight to Eceabat on the Gallipoli Peninsula.</p> <p>This historically enriching experience is part of an <a href="https://www.vikingcruises.com.au/oceans/cruise-destinations/western-mediterranean/ancient-adriatic-treasures/index.html?utm_medium=referral&amp;utm_source=oversixty&amp;utm_campaign=sights-unseen-editorial-troy">eight-day journey</a> starting from romantic Venice to the intriguing Istanbul with <a href="https://www.vikingcruises.com.au/oceans/cruise-destinations/western-mediterranean/ancient-adriatic-treasures/index.html?utm_medium=referral&amp;utm_source=oversixty&amp;utm_campaign=sights-unseen-editorial-troy">Viking Cruises.</a></p> <p><strong>4. Mostar, Bosnia</strong></p> <p>The scenic city of Mostar is a sight any traveller may not ever want to leave. Best known for their landmark <a href="https://www.vikingcruises.com.au/oceans/cruise-destinations/eastern-mediterranean/empires-mediterranean/index.html?itineraryday=4#modal/173899999&amp;utm_medium=referral&amp;utm_source=oversixty&amp;utm_campaign=sights-unseen-editorial-mostar-oldbridge">‘Old Bridge,’</a> the small town is a true symbol of peace and unity in a region once absolved in conflict. Stari Most is a 16<sup>th</sup> century, ottoman-style bridge and is by far Mostar’s most beloved and iconic architectural landmark. Stretching just 28 metres across Neretva River, Stari Most has become a symbolic reminder of harmony and multiculturalism. </p> <p>Along with the abundance of street art, abandoned buildings and ancient mosques and churches, there is a mystique quite unlike any other destination you will travel to.</p> <p>While Bosnia might not be located on a coastline, you can explore this destination from Croatia during the <a href="https://www.vikingcruises.com.au/oceans/cruise-destinations/eastern-mediterranean/empires-mediterranean/index.html?utm_medium=referral&amp;utm_source=oversixty&amp;utm_campaign=sights-unseen-editorial-mostar">Empires of the Mediterranean</a> itinerary with Viking Cruises. The intimate locations are just simple reminders that journeys like these are hard to come by.</p> <p><strong>5. Rethymno, Greece</strong></p> <p>One of the best-preserved medieval cities in Greece, Rethymno is the third biggest city of Crete in the Greek Islands, and is a lively, animated town you won’t want to miss a second of. The dreamy seaside town is the perfect balance between the old and the new – stroll along the 16<sup>th</sup> century cobblestone streets while taking in the arched doorways, stone staircases and ancient remains of what once was.</p> <p>The cosy old town and its tavernas will be a breath of fresh air on your 25-day journey through the cities of antiquity and the holy land where travellers will get the opportunity to explore the <a href="https://www.vikingcruises.com.au/oceans/cruise-destinations/eastern-mediterranean/cities-of-antiquity/index.html#itineraryday/5?utm_medium=referral&amp;utm_source=oversixty&amp;utm_campaign=sights-unseen-editorial-rethymno">wonders of the Mediterranean</a> with Viking Cruises.</p> <p><strong>6. Shetland and Orkney Islands, Scotland</strong></p> <p><img style="width: 500px; height: 281.18101545253865px;" src="/media/7828639/viking-cruise-do-not-use-1.jpg" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/b09769a69b484d10ba187c276381c90c" /></p> <p>Travelling to Shetland, Scotland is sure to be the remarkable experience you wish you’d had sooner while immersing yourself in a <a href="https://www.vikingcruises.com.au/oceans/cruise-destinations/baltic/british-isles-explorer/index.html?utm_medium=referral&amp;utm_source=oversixty&amp;utm_campaign=sights-unseen-editorial-shetland">15-day cruise from Bergen, Norway</a> to London, England.</p> <p>Along the way, as you wind your way around the British Isles, travellers will have the opportunity to witness the famous Shetland ponies grazing along the roadside, on the beaches and along the dappled hillsides of the Shetland Islands.</p> <p>During the <a href="https://www.vikingcruises.com.au/oceans/cruise-destinations/baltic/british-isles-explorer/index.html?utm_medium=referral&amp;utm_source=oversixty&amp;utm_campaign=sights-unseen-editorial-shetland">British Isles Explorer</a> cruise with Viking Cruises, travellers are given the opportunity to learn about the meaningful history surrounding Orkney Islands – from the 5,000-year-old circle of stones to the remarkably preserved Stone Age settlement of Skara Brae that is estimated to have been built between 3000BCE and 2500BCE, and is one of Scotland’s most fascinating villages.</p> <p>This enriching experience is one you won’t want to pass up.</p> <p><strong>7. Trømso, Norway</strong></p> <p>Deemed the “Gateway to the Arctic,” Tromsø is the second largest city in Norway which offers both natural wonders, vibrant cultural elements and unique structures specific to the famous city.</p> <p>Whether you seek adventure, natural beauty or romance, you will find a mingling of activities to suit your needs – from an exploration through the stunning and “daring” Arctic Cathedral created in 1965, to learning about exciting arctic expeditions and dog sledding.</p> <p>Embark on an epic <a rel="noopener" href="https://www.vikingcruises.com.au/oceans/cruise-destinations/baltic/into-the-midnight-sun/index.html?utm_medium=referral&amp;utm_source=oversixty&amp;utm_campaign=sights-unseen-editorial-tromso-midnightsun" target="_blank">15-day voyage Into the Midnight Sun </a>through the UK and Scandinavia and visit Trømso, where travellers will have the opportunity to witness 24 hours of daylight, and the magical ‘Midnight Sun’, during the Scandinavian summer.</p> <p>Alternatively, those wanting to explore the pristine natural beauty of the world’s northernmost city during winter in search of the northern lights can choose a 13-day <a href="https://www.vikingcruises.com.au/oceans/cruise-destinations/baltic/in-search-of-the-northern-lights/index.html?utm_medium=referral&amp;utm_source=oversixty&amp;utm_campaign=sights-unseen-editorial-tromso-nlights">In Search of the Northern Lights </a>cruise.</p> <p><strong>8. Koper, Slovenia</strong></p> <p><strong><img style="width: 500px; height: 281.25px;" src="/media/7828635/viking-cruise-do-not-use-5.jpg" alt="" data-udi="umb://media/ebe524f9aafe4517a9f37fcb22b52c67" /></strong></p> <p>One of Slovenia’s largest coastal towns, Koper is the country’s best kept secret. A city with a bountiful history, it carries the legacy of the Venetian Republic where the large and abundant town became a force to be reckoned with in the 15<sup>th</sup> and 16<sup>th</sup> century.</p> <p>Those with the rare opportunity to wander through the rich architecture will not be left disappointed. In Tito Square, travellers can admire the uniquely built Venetian-Gothic Praetorian Palace. The beautifully ornate building once served as the municipal seat for many generations and has since become one of the city’s most popular landmarks to explore.</p> <p>The glorious town, which is Slovenia’s only port city, is visited during a 10-day voyage to nine magnificent locations throughout the<a href="https://www.vikingcruises.com.au/oceans/cruise-destinations/eastern-mediterranean/empires-mediterranean/index.html?utm_medium=referral&amp;utm_source=oversixty&amp;utm_campaign=sights-unseen-editorial-koper"> Eastern Mediterranean.</a></p> <p><strong>9. Lucca, Italy</strong></p> <p>Located in the Tuscany region of Italy, Lucca is a remarkably preserved city bubbling with a rich way of life that visitors will be entranced by. The charming fortified town is a peaceful rest away from the hustle and bustle of busy Italian life, with an old charm you just can’t beat and a step into a life much different to the world we live in now.</p> <p>A fortified wall encloses the entire town – a distinctive reminder of the city defence that existed many years ago.</p> <p>A place of divine interactions and real experiences with the locals of Tuscany, Lucca is a lovely reprieve filled with its own culture to digest – from unique Lucchese cuisine to a pedestrian promenade that has become one of the city’s most beloved features.</p> <p>During a call to Florence, travellers can choose to explore Lucca during your discovery of the <a href="https://www.vikingcruises.com.au/oceans/cruise-destinations/western-mediterranean/mediterranean-odyssey/index.html?utm_medium=referral&amp;utm_source=oversixty&amp;utm_campaign=sights-unseen-editorial-lucca">Mediterranean’s most historic ports</a>, from the fabled towns of Tuscany to the French Riviera’s seaside treasures in Marseille and Monte Carlo.</p> <p><strong>10. Montpellier (Sète), France</strong></p> <p>The seductive city of Montpellier is a vibrant and culturally diverse gem in the south of France and is the perfect destination to journey to.</p> <p>Cultivated by over 1000 of years of history, the charming, architecturally designed town is filled with a healthy mix of history, art, antiquities and ample amounts of sunshine.</p> <p>The thin strip of land boasts the perfect blend between modern and ancient with its medieval streets, waterfront homes and the buzzing canal linking the Mediterranean Sea to its enclosed saltwater lagoon of Ethang de Thau.</p> <p>Travellers looking to find serenity and belonging in the bustling city will enjoy Cimetière Marin – a monumental cemetery that is the resting place for generations of former inhabitants of Montpellier. Immortalised by local poet Paul Valéry, it offers brilliant views of the sea all the way to Sardinia.</p> <p>Later, voyagers can experience what makes Montpellier’s culinary scene a destination to completely immerse yourself in. See why their seafood delicacies are what they are known for as you watch local fisherman bring in their daily catch on France’s Mediterranean coast.</p> <p><a href="https://www.vikingcruises.com.au/oceans/cruise-destinations/western-mediterranean/iconic-western-mediterranean/index.html?utm_medium=referral&amp;utm_source=oversixty&amp;utm_campaign=sights-unseen-editorial-montpellier">Montpellier</a> is one stop on your <a href="https://www.vikingcruises.com.au/oceans/cruise-destinations/western-mediterranean/iconic-western-mediterranean/index.html?utm_medium=referral&amp;utm_source=oversixty&amp;utm_campaign=sights-unseen-editorial-montpellier">eight-day voyage</a> while journeying through the Western Mediterranean with <a href="https://www.vikingcruises.com.au/oceans/cruise-destinations/western-mediterranean/iconic-western-mediterranean/index.html?utm_medium=referral&amp;utm_source=oversixty&amp;utm_campaign=sights-unseen-editorial-montpellier">Viking Cruises.</a></p> <p>While there are plenty of destinations to choose from, it’s best you get packing now – for the best holiday is just around the corner in this chilly southern hemisphere weather.</p> <p>The perfect solution to keep the winter chill at bay is by jumping on the next sojourn to explore some of the most intriguing and diverse locations Europe has to offer, many of which are best accessed by water.</p> <p><em>This article is brought to you in conjunction with Viking Cruises. </em> </p>

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The allure of Cape Town

<p>Sometimes it seems that Cape Town isn’t really part of Africa at all. Rather it’s a hipster chunk of Europe that somehow found itself at the bottom of Africa. The locals spend a lot more time discussing coffee and cuisine than you’d expect to find in the wild Dark Continent.<br /><br />The city is in a sublime location. When discussing the world’s most picturesque harbour cities we always find Sydney, Rio, Vancouver on the list. But for bay cities, Cape Town must reign supreme with Table Mountain looming behind it.<br /><br />Here are some of the highlights.<br /><br /><strong>Table Mountain</strong><br />For early mariners, the first sight of the flat summit of Table Mountain announced they were safely around the Cape of Good Hope and a well provisioned port lay ahead.</p> <p>Today, taking the <a href="http://www.tablemountain.net/">cable car</a> up to walk around the mountain and survey the city and bay beyond is the one essential thing to do. Walk around the corner and you can see most of the way to the Cape and over the upmarket suburb of Camps Bay and Hout Bay beyond.</p> <p>One unexpected delight of this excursion is the furry mammals you’ll find up there. They are called dassies or rock hyrax and look like marmots or large rats, depending how kindly you view them. But their closest living relative is the elephant. You’ll need a big step in imagination to see the family resemblance.<br /><br /><strong>Victoria and Alfred Waterfront</strong><br />The ongoing redevelopment of the waterfront has been a crowning glory to the city. Lots of hipster coffee shops, all the mainstream brand shops and a great African arts and crafts hall.</p> <p>I bought a painting made from used tea bags in a dedicated charity shop. Whoever in the village had the idea, it was inspired. And it is the Victoria and Alfred Waterfront – not the Victoria and Albert Waterfront because it’s named after the queen and her second son, not her long-lamented husband.<br /><br />Cruises leave from here too – a sunset cruise is a great way to see this spectacular city and the mountain from the water and if you’re lucky you may see the “tablecloth” roll in.<br /><br /><strong>Food</strong><br />Cape Town has always been a cosmopolitan city and that’s reflected in the food. Whether seeking Cape Malay or any international cuisine there will be choice – and the local meat, fish and produce are excellent.</p> <p>You’ll find game, from crocodile to kudu, on many menus, too. The best restaurant in town is The Test Kitchen that is listed as one of the world’s best. But book well in advance and even then, good luck getting a table.</p> <p><strong>Company’s Garden</strong><br />Right in the heart of the city are the Company’s Garden, created in 1650 and featuring a large statue to Cecil Rhodes.</p> <p>Whether you appreciate the legacy of Rhodes or see him as an oppressor, wandering through the gardens is a pleasant way to cool down in the city. If you want a more expansive garden, head to the Botanic Gardens in the shadow of Table Mountain.<br /><br /><strong>Winnebagos on the roof</strong><br />Before the rest of the world’s hotels thought of sticking seven Airstream mobile homes on the roof of premises, the <a href="http://granddaddy.co.za/">Grand Daddy Boutique Hotel</a> on Long St did it first – and then put a rooftop cinema in the middle. It may not be five star but it’s certainly unusual.<br /><br /><strong>Robben Island</strong><br />If you wish to visit Robben Island it’s a very good idea to book tickets in advance as they often sell out. <br /><br />Most of us know of Robben Island - the flat 2x3km island about seven km from Cape Town - as the prison that held Nelson Mandela for 18 of his 27 years as a political prisoner during South Africa’s apartheid era. The 3.5 hour tour has two distinct parts.</p> <p>The first is a general tour of the island where you learn that it also served as a leper colony and an animal quarantine staion. The circumnavigation includes a stop where penguins can be seen on the beach.</p> <p>That’s a soft introduction to a tour of the prison on which you’re shown around by a former prison inmate. I asked out guide if he found it hard to be back here and he said that it took him a couple of years to come to terms with it. Of course, you are shown Mandela’s cell and learn how hard conditions in the prison were.<br /><br /><strong>Cape of Good Hope</strong><br />If there is one essential tour out from Cape Town, it’s down to the Cape of Good Hope. This is not the southernmost point of the African continent but it is one of the world’s three Great Capes – the other two are Cape Horn and WA’s Cape Leeuwin.</p> <p>It’s a rugged place and there’s always the chance to see wildlife like antelopes, ostrich, baboons and zebra.</p> <p><strong>Penguin patrol</strong><br />There are quite a lot of penguins to be found in the waters off Cape Town. These are African penguins and they look a lot like the Magellanic penguins of South America. Both are sometimes called jackass penguins for the braying sound they make. They can be seen on a tour of Robben Island.</p> <p>Or if you wish to get close to them you can head to Boulders Beach near Simon’s Town or Stony Point near Betty’s Beach – both have boardwalks and charge an admission fee.<br /><br /><strong>Helicopter overview</strong><br />If you are in Cape Town when the weather is good, it’s worthwhile taking a helicopter flight out over the bay for a spectacular aerial view of the city. We used <a href="http://www.nachelicopterscapetown.com/">NAC Helicopters</a> and the grand panoramas made the short flight great value.</p> <p><strong>Staying</strong><br />Cape Town has a wide range of hotels. Many are at the V&amp;A Waterfront. A personal favourite is the <a href="http://www.westincapetown.com/">Westin Cape Town</a>, particularly the Executive Club with a lounge that offers unsurpassed views across the city to Table Mountain.<br /><br /><a href="http://tintswalo.com/atlantic">Tintswalo Atlantic</a> is a very alternative option. It’s a unique luxury boutique hotel on Hout Bay, located within the National Park.</p> <p>The waves lap the rocks below your balcony so you feel very much in the wild although the city and airport are only minutes away. The wild surrounds and the absolute luxury within create a</p> <p> very special experience.<br /><br /><strong>Cape Province delights</strong><br />Whether your interest is in the whales and sharks of Hermanus, the Cape flowers, the wines of Franschhoek and Stellenbosch, or setting off on the Garden Route, Cape Town is the perfect starting point. Just a few days here will convince you that Africa is a wonderland ripe for exploration.</p> <p><em>Written by David McGonigal. Republished with permission of </em><a href="https://www.wyza.com.au/articles/travel/the-allure-of-cape-town.aspx"><em>Wyza.com.au.</em></a></p>

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Cruising to a New Zealand holiday

<p>Back in the 1970s, well before cruising was travel’s growth area, I took a Sitmar voyage from Sydney to Wellington on the Fairsky. Of the 461 cabins, only seven had private bathrooms (I guess The Seekers didn’t have those when they worked their fare to the UK onboard the ship in 1964).</p> <p>That was a world away from modern cruising as epitomised by Royal Caribbean’s Radiance of the Seas that has been a regular feature in Australian waters over the past few summers. Its 2500 passengers appreciate the stunning Centrum area amidships: soaring seven storeys high, the exterior walls are clear glass so from the lounges and bars you are constantly looking at the sea and sky.</p> <p>The walls of the elevators are glass, too, so as you ascend you are either looking down to the central Deck 4 bar or out over an ocean panorama. Radiance OTS (as fans write it) is a big ship, but you can never forget you are at sea.</p> <p>This summer, Radiance will be based in Sydney and will undertake several return voyages to New Zealand. Cruising at 25 knots, it takes just two sea days to cross the Tasman and, starting at the top, you explore the delights of our neighbour from the Bay of Islands, Auckland, Tauranga and the Bay of Plenty, Wellington, Akaroa (for Christchurch) and Dunedin before exploring Dusky and Milford sounds and returning to Sydney.</p> <p>The <a href="http://travel.wyza.com.au/Great-Deals/13-night-New-Zealand-Cruise">13-night cruise</a> departing on March 28, for example is a great mix of excursion days and sea days. Modern ships provide so much in entertainment and facilities that you feel short changed if there aren’t a few sea days to simply explore and appreciate the ship.</p> <p>The last time I sailed on Radiance was through the Panama Canal before the newly expanded canal was opened. It was a tight fit; indeed sailing into Gatun Locks was rather like putting a cork back in a bottle. The canal locks designed by the US for the 1914 opening are all the same size: 110 feet wide by 1050 feet long. In similar imperial terms, Radiance is 105.6 feet wide and 962 feet long so we fitted, but only just, and we left some paint behind. Radiance of the Seas displaces 90,090 tons and, over its 12 passenger decks, carries 2114 passengers in double cabins or a maximum of 2501 served by more than 850 crew.</p> <p>There’s a wide range of dining options on board from a Brazilian steakhouse to the Italian cuisine of Giovanni’s Table. Besides an English pub, there’s the enjoyable and rather eccentric Schooner Bar and Colony Club that you enter past old canon and gunpowder kegs. It has gyroscopic self-levelling billiard tables, using technology created for North Sea oil platforms.</p> <p>Of course there’s a day spa, casino, gym, nightclub and theatre, but there’s also a giant outdoor movie screen, a climbing wall up the funnel, golf simulator, mini-golf and a basketball/volleyball court. On cold days, the jungle-like African-themed glassed solarium and pool is a delight. If you are making an intergenerational voyage, you’ll be happy to see that kids of all ages are catered for. Royal Babies and Royal Tots (6 to 36 months) have combined with Fisher-Price to create interactive activities.</p> <p>There are two divisions of Adventure Ocean: the youth program (3 to 11 years) offers everything from scavenger hunts to science experiments while the teen program (12 to 17 years) offers a teen space, parties, separate dinners and an elaborate water slide at their pool.</p> <p>It’s no wonder that cruises from Australia to New Zealand are rapidly increasing in popularity. Not only is NZ delightfully close, but it’s packed with a wide range of scenery and activities – from the warm beauty of the Bay of Islands to the wilds of the southern fiords. And there’s no better way to explore the maritime highlights than by ship.</p> <p><em>Written by David McGonigal. Republished with permission of <a href="https://www.wyza.com.au/articles/travel/cruising-to-a-new-zealand-holiday.aspx">Wyza.com.au.</a></em></p>

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