You’re about to discover the10 Best Bucket List Cruises in The World that I believe everybody should have on their to-do list, their bucket list or must do list. the 10 essential cruises that I really believe that everybody should try and do at least once in their life.
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The Caribbean is the biggest and most popular cruising region in the world, and that’s for a very good reason. It is absolutely magnificent and all the islands and the places that the cruise lines go to are phenomenally well geared up to deal with cruises and the whole cruising vacation.
There are a bunch of different cruises that you can do out of the Caribbean. Many of them sailing out of Miami or Port Canaveral or other ports within the USA. You can also do some directly from Europe where they cross the Atlantic, spend some time the Caribbean and head back if you don’t want to fly.
There are three key cruises in the Caribbean to consider:
- Eastern Caribbean, which will visit places like the Bahamas, the Cayman Islands and Dominican Republic.
- Western Caribbean, that goes to Jamaica, large parts of Mexico like Cozumel and Costa Maya.
- Southern Caribbean which includes St Kitts, Antigua, Martinique, Dominica and Barbados.
It’s hard to choose between them, but definitely pick one of them and (of course) if you want to add more cruises do all three of them and then you’ve done all three sectors of the Caribbean, but definitely Caribbean should be on that list.
The second biggest cruising region in the world is the Mediterranean, and for very good reasons. It gives you a great overview of Europe because on a cruise you’ll often call on multiple countries and you’ll see lots of different cultures. There are beautiful historical sites and there’s stunning beaches depending on where you go.
It’s a great way of seeing Europe and it’s really great because you can see multiple countries and different places and you only have to unpack and then pack once.
Like in the Caribbean, there are lots of different itineraries. Many of them will go out of places like Barcelona, Athens, Venice or Rome or you can also do it out of Southampton in the UK which takes a little bit of longer, because you have to head through the Straits of Gibraltar to get into the Mediterranean.
Lots of different itineraries like the East and the Western and, of course, one of the most popular for people to do is the trip from Venice down to Athens which is really magnificent. You get a chance to see the Greek islands and also places like Dubrovnik.
The Mediterranean absolutely should be on your list.
Alaska, I think I’m right in saying, is the third biggest cruising region. It’s growing really fast and it’s really magnificent. It took me a while to get to Alaska, but once I went there, I realised why it was so popular.
There is magnificent scenery. It really is absolutely spectacular. You can do it out of places like Vancouver and it’s also very popular out of Seattle.
I would recommend for your very first cruise to Alaska do an Inside Passage cruise, and when you’re looking at booking try and make sure that you’re going on one that includes Glacier Bay. Not all cruise lines get into Glacier Bay as it’s very restricted around how many ships can go there every day, but it is really incredible and, as the name suggests, there’s lots of glaciers.
My strong recommendation for your first-time cruise to Alaska is an Inside Passage. It is a magnificent place to go to, and more and more cruise lines are going – from the bigger ships down to some of the smaller ships. You have lots of choice of options. Alaska definitely should be on your list.
Queen Mary 2 Transatlantic
My next suggestion, and a really strong tip, is to do one of the iconic and classic trips: a transatlantic on the Queen Mary 2.
In the 40s 50s and 60s crossing Atlantic by ship was the only way you’d get between Europe and the United States. Cunard has the only true cruise liner in Queen Mary 2 which is a traditional liner ship.
It’s a really magnificent experience and takes between seven and eight days, depending on the itinerary you choose. That’s all at sea but it’s a whole beautiful trip where they try and recreate some of the romance and specialness of those very glamorous days of cruising. It’s a magnificent ship with art deco-inspired decor. Lots of dressing up.
It’s a great trip to do if you’ve got a special event like a birthday or an anniversary. It is one of the most iconic, and you need to do it on Cunard Queen Mary 2. You can do other transatlantic trips which are repositioning but really for me, the ultimate classic one is the Queen Mary 2. Absolutely definitely do that one.
One of the most beautiful trips that you can do is a cruise to the Norwegian fjords. There’s lots of options you can do. You can either go out of places in Norway or you can sail from the UK out of Southampton, where they’ll have a day at sea, time around the Norwegian fjords and a day at sea back.
The Norwegian fjords are absolutely magnificent, and you sail really far inland on ships with huge big walls of rock and water falls into these beautiful little picturesque towns. If you go in summer, which is when the season is, you also have pretty much midnight Sun, so it’s light all the time so as you cruise through the fjords you can go out on deck or relax on your balcony and just enjoy the scenery.
I would strongly recommend the Norwegian fjords, that was another trip that it took me a while to do but once I did that, I now recommended it like crazy to everybody! Norwegian fjords absolutely magnificent.
Another popular European-based cruise is to the Baltics, and this is very magical. These normally go to places like Helsinki and Tallinn, and then they will head into St Petersburg in Russia – and normally will be either two or three overnights to make sure that you can really explore the magnificent that is St. Petersburg, with its beautiful buildings, museums, chateaus and castles.
It really is a magnificent trip. It’s very interesting because you’re going to see parts of the world that you don’t really know that well, and it definitely is a great trip to do.
An advantage of going on a cruise, particularly go on cruise excursions, is you don’t have to worry with all the hassles of Russian visas because if you go on a cruise on excursion you don’t have to bother with a visa. That’s a big plus.
The Baltics is definitely something I would have up there if you’re interested in understanding and experiencing different cultures and you’re interested in the cultural and the art side. Baltics is a phenomenal cruise and again lots of different cruise lines go there as well.
Some of the smaller cruise ships dock right in the heart of St Petersburg, so if you’re going on a Baltic cruise, look at some of those smaller ship cruise lines.
Ever since I was a boy and heard about the Panama Canal, that was on my list of things to do. Going through the Panama Canal is again a bit like a transatlantic, it’s one of the big iconic trips you can do. I recommend try and building at some point in your cruising life a trip that’s going to take you through the Panama Canal. It is an incredible experience.
You can do it if you’re doing a grand voyage like a world cruise, as they will often go through a Panama
Canal, but you can often do from the Caribbean up to Los Angeles or San Francisco or if you’re doing parts of South America. Some of the cruises will go through it.
Panama Canal is a magical day and it provides a phenomenal understanding of man’s ingenuity and engineering. It really is one of those iconic trips, so I think if you’re into cruising the Panama Canal (like the transatlantic) is an iconic thing that you want to have on your list of things to have experienced.
My next suggestion I wrestled with whether I should make it 2 or 1 but, because of the pure enormity of cost of going there, I’ve made it one – and that’s to go to one of the polar regions either the Arctic or Antarctica
Both of those for me were on my wish list and I’ve been to both the Arctic and have been to Antarctica. They’re very different and if you go to the Arctic, you’re going to see things like polar bears, and if you go to Antarctica, you’re going to see penguins. Go to one or both of them
Antarctica for me was probably the most different and the most incredible, and the one that for me really blew me away. Antarctica is the place that I’m going to for a second time, so if I did have to recommend, I guess I’m saying Antarctica because that’s the one I’m heading back to for a second time.
One of the most magical regions of the world is the Galapagos, and that is definitely something that should be on the list. It’s like the polar regions and it’s a very expensive place to go, but the wildlife is so unique and different.
There are very strict rules around who can go there so that’s what makes it expensive, but the Galapagos definitely should be on the list.
My next tip is around one of the most beautiful and interesting parts of the world and that’s the French Polynesian islands. At the time of writing this, I have not long been back from there and it was incredible.
The islands are beautiful, the people amazing and the culture is phenomenal. It’s isolated and again it’s quite difficult to get to. It’s eight and a half hours flight from Los Angeles and it takes you 21 hours from Paris to get there.
Once you’re there it is just absolutely beautiful. There are just under 200 islands and only 60 or so of them are inhabited. Going on a cruise you see very diverse islands, some are volcanic, some are very lush and some of them are just incredibly beautiful beaches and reefs.
The French Polynesian islands is definitely one that I would recommend you have on the list.
There are so many cruises and options that you can do. Those for me are the 10 absolute must-see must do based on my experience.
I have loads of tips about cruising destinations and cruising tips and ideas, so why don’t you watch one of my videos right now? http://www.youtube.com/tipsfortravellers
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