More Special Offers
More Special Offers
With that nice Carol Kirkwood forecasting temperatures in the mid-20s later this week there’s every chance that the sunshine has been switched on at the end of the inexorable tunnel called winter. Clement weather is the order of the day, you’ll be dusting the cobwebs off your sunscreen and this weekend might even be time to get your legs out into the sun.
Talk of sun worshippers and the mind immediately flips to Ra – great Sun God of the Egyptians. Once there it’s only a short cognitive leap to dial the mind back to 3,000BC or so and start imagining Luxor, Cairo, the Sphinx and all things Pharaohic. And, just in case you think we’re Pyramid selling – you’re absolutely right because this coming winter we’re back cruising the Red Sea and Suez area, gateway to wonders so indescribable that we simply can’t describe them. You need to come and see them for yourself.
The itinerary takes in all the best bits of Egyptian legends but perhaps the most mind-boggling place of all is Petra, Jordan. Also known as the ‘Rose City’ this absolutely world class delight is not to be confused by the eponymous Blue Peter dog – who was actually a ringer drafted into the show after the original mutt shuffled off to doggy heaven from distemper after only 2 days on set. However, in typical Fertile Crescent dynastic fashion, Petra begat Shep and the rest is history.
- Gubal Islands
- Jordan [for Petra, Wadi Rum & Amman]
- Ashdod, Israel
- Port Said [for Cairo]
- Suez Canal
- St Anthony’s Monastery
- Aqaba, Jordan [for Petra, Wadi Rum & Amman]
There is so much culture in this area that we’ve actually put together 2 slightly different itineraries (one includes the Suez Canal), so you get to choose. We can’t possibly put it all into one email so if you want the full sarcophagus you’ll need to click here.
More Special Offers
More Special Offers
More Special Offers
CRUISE ALL THE WAY TO THE FOOTY FINALS WITHOUT SEEING A SINGLE GAME!
It’s all kicking-off in June
Surreptitious sort of thing the FIFA World Cup. Lots of fuss last year when the qualifiers were being played – then the sort of silence that can induce a very dodgy false sense of security, as if it was all a dream. Do not be fooled, from the start of June when England assemble in Primark or Next to don their three-piece suits, until the final-final whistle goes on July 15th, the bits of the UK that don’t include Wales, Scotland or Northern Ireland will be in a media-driven football frenzy.
Football frenzy for the fans, football fatigue for the rest of us
By the time England take the field somewhere in the back-woods of Russia at 7.00 pm on Monday 18th June we will already have had 13 matches played and over-analysed. Football fatigue will be in full force and you know what, you won’t even be able to escape down the wine bar for a refreshing Pinot Grigio (hold-up Italian target man) because sure as referees are blind some pundit will be waxing more lyrical than a team of full Brazilians – who have never been the same since Socrates died – on a specially imported TV.
The Socratic wisdom of football-free Greek island cruising
Socrates claimed he could only know that which he knew – and he knew damn fine well there was no satellite TV on any of Variety’s Mega Yachts, ergo a Greek island cruise, or any Variety cruise for that matter, was a football free zone.
Seriously, we wish England the very best of luck in Russia, and hope they at least get to cruise through the group stages.
Of course, if you live in Cardiff, Glasgow or Belfast you might not share the sentiment. Fancy a cruise in June?
Would you rather disagree with the fourth official or have a cocktail with the Captain?
On Friday 15th June you could be watching what is sure to be a feisty match between Morocco and Iran – or you could be boarding ship in Athens for a cocktail with the Captain prior to embarking on a cruise to see Classical Greece.
Teatime with Peru and the Socceroos or a swim off Antiparos?
So it’s the 26th of June – how would you rather spend the afternoon? If you fancy a swim, join our Jewels of the Cyclades team.
See England surrender or visit Saranda?
Being brutally honest the day is almost certainly going to come when the English flag is lowered. Love football or hate it that day of surrender will be tearful and torrid. Yet there’s a big BUT and it starts the name of beautiful Butrint – a sight more remarkable than a Harry Kane hat-trick. You can see it on our Adriatic Odyssey cruise.
You can’t watch Wales, but you could watch whales
Sadly, Wales might not have scored highly enough to get into the final fixtures but something that will score in spades with your bridge club buddies will be a little whale watching off the Atlantic coast of Iceland. Iceland itself will be quiet at this time because most of the 334,250 inhabitants will be in Russia watching their team play.
ADRIATIC ODYSSEY – THE PRELUDE
We’ve sent our favourite travel blogger to cruise the Adriatic and all this week we’ll be sharing his journal with you.
We decided not to rush things so we flew out a day early and landed in Dubrovnik just before 9.00 on Saturday evening. Disembarking the aircraft we walked into a wall of heat – wonderful after the overcast of Gatwick. We’d booked a room for the night and they had arranged a driver to pick us up and drive us back up the coastline, all lit up like a Christmas tree, to the city.
The apartment was charming and just a few hundred metres from the famous Pile Gate – the entry to the old town. We had dinner overlooking the water and imposing city walls just outside the gates, then walked in through the gate to the Stradum – the main drag – to people watch over a nightcap.
Not too much about Dubrovnik now as we’ll be spending two days there when we return and I’ll file a full report. Suffice, for now, to say its super-lively after dark and as we walked back the young and beautiful were queuing at the nightclub doors.
Sunday morning breakfast was back overlooking the water at the same restaurant who had kindly given us a 10% discount card for all future visits! A stroll around town and a couple of cold ones in one of the myriad of side-street bars. Then a taxi to the port – we were early but there’s a small restaurant across the road serving silver-skin anchovies, salted sardines and cold white wine.
The crew were so welcoming when we boarded Panorama – our home for the next 7 days and nights. There are 20 crew and 39 guests on board, good ratio for attentive service. Very happy with the four-course dinner, in particular the traditional Greek Avgolemono soup. Choice of prawns so big you wouldn’t want to meet them in open water, or lamb. Drinking red so the lamb edged it.
Only been on board a few hours but already know 12 people by name. It’s just like a big family party. First impressions? Ship and ship’s company smallish but perfectly formed. It’s going to be a blast…
FULL DETAILS ON THE CRUISE CAN BE FOUND HERE.
Jewels of the Cyclades
Ports of call: Athens – Poros – Poliegos/Kimolos – Folegandros – Santorini – Antiparos – Paros – Delos – Mykonos – Syros – Kythnos – Marina Zea (Athens)
The Culture of the Canary Islands – forget the package image and enjoy the quality with our Boutique Cruise
The Canary Islands, put on the ocean-going traveller’s map by a certain C. Columbus in 1492, have sadly become somewhat besmirched by the image of package tourism. But the fact is that this group of volcanic islands, situated in the warm waters of the Atlantic off the coast of Africa, is every bit as rewarding to cruise as Greece or the Caribbean.
So the first thing is we promise we’ll give a big swerve to any of the ‘bucket and spade’ resorts beloved by the young crowd. Actually most of them don’t have much of a harbour even for the small luxury Mega Yachts like the stunning 25 cabin Harmony G.
There really is a lot to learn and enjoy about this Spanish archipelago 100kms off from Morocco with a wonderful sub-tropical climate that makes it the ideal choice for short-haul winter cruising – winter temperatures average the low 20s centigrade.
Little known facts include the geological anomaly that Mount Teide, the volcano that dominates Tenerife, is the world’s third largest volcano when measured from its base on the ocean floor. And that on the almost unknown and little visited island of La Gomera the locals still communicate using a bizarre whistling language.
There’s a heap of history here since the Portuguese tried to colonise the islands in 1336. The famous Prince ‘Henry the Navigator’ became Lord of Lanzarote in 1448. Later the islands became part of the Kingdom of Castile. It’s a chequered history – the Dutch laid a claim, the Ottomans had a go, Algerian pirates took slaves, and even Nelson was here attacking Santa Cruz de Tenerife in 1797.
For many years the islands were huge suppliers of sugar cane. At the beginning of the 20th century bananas were introduced as a cash crop by, amongst others, Fyffes. In 1936 Francisco Franco (later to become Generalissimo Franco) was appointed General Commandant, joining the military revolt of July 17th which began the Spanish Civil War.
So there is no small amount of history in these warm waters. More to the point there is some incredible beauty and most of it, certainly out of the main resorts, is still totally unspoiled.
We’d love to show you Mount Teide and one of the biggest volcanic craters in the world at Ucanca Valley on Tenerife. We’ll also show you Taburiente National Park on La Palma, the Garajonay National Park on La Gomera and Timanfaya National Park amongst the volcanos on Lanzarote where the visit inckudes the salt mines and the lava coast.
La Laguna on Tenerife is a UNESCO World Heritage Site with a town hall dating back to 1546. Betacuna on Fuerteventura is the ancient capital of the Aboriginal Kingdom of the Canaries where we’ll share with you the islanders’ passion for goats and the secrets of their Majorero cheeses. We’ll then visit the Aloe Vera farm and talk about its health benefits.
We currently have an early bookimg offer saving you 10% on the cruise proce for Winter 2017-18 cruises. What’s more, early bookers always receive the b est cabins, so don’t hang about – it you’re looking for a winter cruise this is a real delight.