4 Reasons to Cruise this Fall
Yes, the leaves are pretty, the sunsets are many-splendored, and the back-to-school shopping has a blood sport appeal, but the onset of fall brings another reason to celebrate as well: cheap cruises. Conveniently enough, that’s also the first of my four reasons to cruise this fall! Check the list below for the full set of perks:
(1) Lower cruise rates: There’s a reason “summer” and “vacation” go so well together—that’s when most people like to travel. But “fall” and “savings” make a pretty pairing as well. Autumn is the season that you’ll find most of the best rates on cruises, whether you’re sailing to Europe, the Caribbean, or the Middle East. If you’ve been sailing before, Travelocity’s Cruise Bonus Days sale is a great place to compare itineraries. If not, start by learning what to expect as a first-time cruiser.
(2) Lighter crowds: Skipping the summer rush means skipping the summer crowds. Expect to encounter more space on the sun deck, quicker service at the pool bar, and maybe even a more intimate offshore experience.
(3) Exotic destinations: September marks the unofficial end of the Alaska cruise season, but also opens up some interesting new itineraries as those ships change course. The Panama Canal cruise is one of these. It usually starts in either California or Florida, then progresses along the coast until it hits the famous canal. This cruise has been on my “must do” list for years, and I blame that largely on photos like this one:
(4) New ships: Four new ships have hit the water in the last few months, and all of them are worth checking out. Here’s where they’re sailing in autumn:
a. Celebrity Silhouette: Celebrity’s latest Solstice class ship will spend the first part of fall in the Caribbean before it begins “Holy Land” sailings with ports of call in Israel, Turkey, and Italy. The brand-new Lawn Club Grill will be the industry’s first on-ship, outdoor grill.
b. Carnival Magic: This ship will be sailing in the Caribbean all autumn long. New features include the line’s first pub, featuring private-label beer, and the first ever ropes course at sea, part of the SportSquare recreation area.
c. Costa Favolosa: The fourth ship in Costa’s Concordia class adds an Aqua Park and a new teen area to its list of features. This fall finds it sailing Greece, Italy, and the Middle East.
d. Seabourn Quest: If you’re yearning for a brand new luxury option, check out fall sailings on the Seabourn Quest—it will be touring the Mediterranean and the Middle East this year. One thing that makes me really want to sail Seabourn is their water sports Marina, a fold-out deck from which you can actually sail, kayak, or snorkel.
Have a question about fall cruises? Leave a comment below and I’ll do my best to answer.
Image Credits: “Panama Canal from Train” by Roger Wollstadt.
My name: Kate Beall
How I earn my keep: Writing for Travelocity.
Best meal I've ever had: There are three: the mofongo at Jimmy'z Kitchen in South Beach, the lomito completo at Fuente Alemana in Santiago, and (for the sheer novelty factor) the cuy chactado in Arequipa, Peru.
First thing I do in a new place: Hit the shower. Anything more than an hour in transit gets me fantasizing about soap.
View that took my breath away: Seeing the endless stretch of the Sierras as I flew in to Reno/Tahoe for the first time. In the winter, it's an aching field of white all the way to the horizon, like a world wiped clean. Looking out at it gives you this unmatched feeling of eternity.
Most challenging travel moment: Sharing a pull-out couch in a cramped New York apartment. The heat wave of 2010 was in full, humid swing and the air conditioning was D.O.A. There was nothing to do but soak your clothes in the sink and hope to pass out before they dried. ...then wake up in an hour and do it all again.
Favorite way to get around: On foot. I'm still working on the motorcycle license.