Europe is, without a doubt, the hottest cruise destination out there. Lines are deploying ships in record numbers to the region, and the variety of itineraries on offer is unprecedented. Cruisers looking for a fully immersive European experience may want to cruise on a Europe-based line, such as UK-based Fred. Olsen Cruises.
Whereas mainstream North American lines tend to focus more heavily on Mediterranean itineraries, or Baltic itineraries calling on St. Petersburg, Russia, Fred. Olsen Cruises offers tremendous variety, from a short two-day getaway to Dublin to an incredible 16-night voyage to Greenland and Iceland aboard Boudicca.
There’s a world of things to see and do in the unique northern landscapes that Fred. Olsen offers, particularly in northern European destinations like Iceland, Ireland, Scotland, Norway and the UK.
The warmth of the sunny Med isn’t ignored completely. Voyages to Spain and the Canary Islands are popular even during the summer months, and voyages up to 16 days call on numerous ports in Italy, Spain and France – all with the convenience of a roundtrip UK departure.
With nearly every itinerary operating out of a UK homeport, getting to a Fred. Olsen voyage couldn’t be easier for North American cruisers. Flights to London Heathrow are offered from nearly every major Canadian and American gateway, and heavily-discounted charter flights operate from select cities to London’s Gatwick airport during the summer months.
One of the line’s key assets is its diverse, intimate fleet of ships. From the 1970’s-built Black Watch and her sister Boudicca to the stylish Braemar and “crown” of the fleet, Balmoral, there’s literally a ship to suit every taste. Fred. Olsen has taken great care of its fleet, resulting in ships that remain classic in appearance, yet thoroughly modern in every way.
So where can you go this summer? Here’s a few of our favorite itineraries:
- 14 Night North Cape Navigator – June 10, 2011 aboard Balmoral from Southampton — Southampton; Alesund, Norway; Tromso, Norway; Honningsvag (North Cape), Norway; Alta, Finnmark, Norway; Narvik, Norway; Olden, Norway; Bergen, Norway; Southampton
- 16 Night Greenland & Iceland – July 28, 2011 aboard Boudicca from Rosyth — Rosyth, UK; Torshavn, Faroe Islands; Qaqortoq, Greenland; Narsarsuaq, Greenland; Nanortalik, Greenland; Cruising Cape Farewell, Greenland; Isafjordur, Iceland; Reykjavik, Iceland (overnight); Rosyth, UK.
- 12 Night Stockholm, Tallinn & St. Petersburg – July 30, 2011 aboard Black Watch from Dover — Dover, England; Cruising the Kiel Canal; Copenhagen, Denmark; Stockholm, Sweden; Tallinn, Estonia; St. Petersburg, Russia (overnight); Sassnitz, Germany; Arhus, Denmark; Dover, England.
- 14 Night Spanish Summer – August 13, 2011 aboard Braemar from Dover — Dover, England; Motril, Spain; Ibiza, Spain; Barcelona, Spain; Toulon, France; Gibraltar, UK; Portimao, Portugal; Lisbon, Portugal; Dover, England
Still looking for more? Why not sail with us aboard Balmoral’s September 27, 2011 departure from Southampton to France, Portugal and Spain? Can’t make it in person? Don’t worry – we’ll be blogging live from the ship to offer our perspective on this fascinating ship and itinerary.
In the meantime, view our Fred. Olsen line overview and detailed ship reviews.