Extravagant Shore Excursions
Shore excursions can be one of the best parts of any cruise, as they give you the opportunity to have fun on shore and learn about your ports of call. Cost can certainly be a factor when choosing shore excursions, and many cruise lines offer a wide selection with costs that run the scale from minimal to extravagant. On the extravagant end of the scale, you’ll find some truly unique experiences that will provide you with plenty of dinner table conversation during and after your cruise.
Guests of Silversea cruises that call in Bordeaux, France, can enjoy the beauty of the renowned wine region from a unique perspective: the gondola of a hot-air balloon. The launching site is near the village of St. Emilion, a World Heritage site with lovely churches and ruins from the Roman era. The Romans originally planted the vineyards around the village, too. Once your balloon is airborne, you’ll fly above the beautiful landscape as your pilot takes full advantage of the breeze. Upon landing, you’ll celebrate your memorable flight with a champagne toast.
Regent Seven Seas Cruises includes the cost of many shore excursions in its basic cruise prices. This cruise line’s creative shore excursions include an America’s Cup regatta experience that starts on the Caribbean island of St. Maarten. The St. Maarten 12-Meter Challenge puts you on a high-performance racing yacht to sail an exciting America’s Cup-style course. While you don’t need any sailing experience, expect to be assigned a task, such as winding ropes, alongside the professional crew.
If your tastes are very, very extravagant, Crystal Cruises has announced a series of overnight shore excursions to Russia’s formerly top-secret Cosmonaut Training Center, Star City. Inside this facility, hidden in the remote forests outside Moscow, you can experience the simulated G-forces of a blastoff, zero-gravity weightlessness, and a simulated space walk in an authentic space suit (while submerged in 54,000 square feet of water). Such adventure comes at a price: from $4,359 to $32,995, to be precise.
If you have a generous budget but find that none of the prearranged shore excursions offered by your ship are quite right for you, some cruise lines have programs that let you design your own. There’s no better way to ensure full customization to your interests and desires.
To select shore excursion experiences that will stay with you long after your next cruise, talk with your Cruise Holidays expert.