Cunard Announces Three Centenary World Voyages – Other Cruise News: Cruise Re-Starts Continue, Now With NCL – More UK Coastal Cruises By Viking
by Kevin Griffin
This month Cunard Line announced three centenary voyages that will celebrate Cunard’s first World Cruise by the Laconia in 1922-23. Cruise re-starts also continue, with three ships to be brought back into service by Norwegian Cruise Line and two additional UK cruises announced by Viking Cruises.
THIS WEEK’S STORY
Cunard Announces Three Centenary World Voyages
“2023 marks 100 years since RMS Laconia completed Cunard’s first World Voyage and to celebrate we’re sailing on a season of global adventures inspired by this pioneering feat in ocean travel.”
“On the morning of 21 November 1922, if you were a bit posh and more than a little adventurous, you might have boarded the luxury liner Laconia for her inaugural around-the-world cruise. For 130 glorious days, you’d visit some of the world’s most exotic destinations — Yokohama and Shanghai, Rangoon and Bombay, Egypt, and Naples. You’d steam through the Suez Canal, visit the Taj Mahal, and pass through the Valley of the Kings.“
“Although the ship could carry up to 2200 passengers, this excursion was limited to just 450 travellers who were assigned to only the largest and most well-appointed cabins on board.”
World cruises boomed in 1922-23, with the Laconia being only the first of four ships to leave New York on world cruises that winter. The others, booked either by Frank C Clark or by American Express, were United American Line’s 19,653-ton Resolute, Canadian Pacific’s 18,481-ton Empress of France and Cunard Line’s 19,602-ton Samaria, which sailed in the opposite direction from the other three, proceeding from west to east. The rest, as they say, is history.
“A Cunard world voyage brings the globe’s greatest sights to your door, with illuminating guest speakers and gourmet cuisine that unlocks the secrets of the destinations you’ll encounter. From Sydney Harbour to the Panama Canal, the Caribbean islands and the South Pacific, the world is just a port away, when you experience it aboard Cunard.”
“From the heady streets of Safaga on the shores of the Red Sea, to the golden sands of South Africa, Queen Mary 2 will embark on a 102 night Centenary World Voyage with in-depth explorations of Australia, Asia and Africa”.
“See rhinos and elephants on a visit to a wildlife reserve from Port Elizabeth, or savour the iconic design of Sydney’s opera house on a visit to New South Wales’ cosmopolitan capital. Stops in Mauritius, Réunion and Airlie Beach, bring salt-white sands, gently swaying palms and spellbinding blue sea.”
2023 sees Queen Victoria journey on a 101 night Centenary World Voyage, commemorating 100 years since Cunard’s first circumnavigation of the globe. In the same spirit of exploration, Queen Victoria will visit ten of the ports originally called at by RMS Laconia in her 1923 World Voyage.
A full transit of the Panama Canal offers yet another bucket list experience to relish, while stops ashore in Jordan (gateway to Petra), Tonga and the Samoa Islands are sure to ignite the senses and inspire unforgettable memories.
Starting her 2023 season in Barcelona, Queen Elizabeth will swap European shores including a maiden call to Vladivostok, for the Asia Pacific, where she’ll embark on a full circumnavigation of Australia, complemented by voyages to Japan, New Zealand and South East Asia.
Her New Zealand voyages sail through the islands’ famous Fiordland National Park, where waterfalls spill down glacier-carved gullies, while her Japanese itineraries are rich with UNESCO World Heritage sites to explore. Manila, Chan May (gateway to the historic cities of Hue and De Nang) and Busan, in the Republic of Korea, are further highlights of Queen Elizabeth’s vibrant itineraries.
“Taking inspiration from RMS Laconia’s ground-breaking journey, our fleet will embark on two Centenary World Voyages in 2023, calling at ten ports originally featured on that historic circumnavigation of the globe by a passenger ship.”
OTHER CRUISE NEWS
Cruise Re-Starts Continue, Now With NCL
After Royal Caribbean re-starts by in Singapore, then in Haifa, Barbados and now Nassau, Bermuda and Cyprus, as well as Celebrity in St Maarten,and Athens, and one ship each in Southampton, the latest re-starts are three ships from Norwegian Cruise Line, with three new 7-night itineraries:
July-November – Norwegian Jade – Crete, Rhodes, Mykonos, Corfu & Santorini & Haifa
● Montego Bay, Jamaica
August-October – Norwegian Joy – Belize, Roatan, Cozumel & Ochoa Rios
● Punta Cana, Dominican Republic
August-October – Norwegian Gem – Barbados, St Lucia, St Maarten & Antigua
More UK Coastal Cruises By Viking
Viking Cruises has added two more departures to its programme of short UK coastal cruises for June. The additional cruises were added after the first three cruises sold out, and will be operated using the same ship, the 930-berth Viking Venus.
The new cruises will start at £3,690 per person. Sailing from Portsmouth, calls are being scheduled for Liverpool, Tresco in the Isles of Scilly and in the bay of Falmouth.
(Kevin Griffin is managing director of The Cruise People Ltd in London, England. For further information concerning cruises mentioned in this article readers can visit his blog)