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Cretan Port

Port scene in Crete

For those who enjoy relaxation, great food, entertainments, a sense of freedom and a fresh vista every morning, then a cruise has to be the perfect way to enjoy a holiday. Once the preserve of retirees and the well-off, the range of cruise offerings has recently exploded to offer a far broader and richer package of destination and holiday offers to a broader range of potential holidaymakers, including special options for families and younger people.

There are now cruise boats specially built with families and young people in mind, which forgo much of the formal dining space of the more adult cruise ships and instead have attractions such as bowling alleys, cinemas, kids clubs, games spaces, swimming pools and organised babysitting and sports sessions, while Mum and Dad take a much-deserved break with a cocktail and a lounger!

The vast array of cruise ships means that there`s plenty to choose from too, with many having been refurbished in recent years to upgrade accommodation and make it suitable for larger groups. Look out for star spangled entertainment listings and also themed cruises such as Disney cruises which are almost guaranteed sell-outs for those seeking a little magic for their holiday duration.

When it comes to destinations, there`s no longer an automatic need to cruise to the USA or Caribbean, although many do for longer cruises. The advent of European cruises means that shorter cruise durations are available and more convenient to a larger group of time-starved potential holidaymakers. Certainly, cruises around Europe continue to be hugely popular, particularly with exciting new destinations being added all the time. Whether it`s the green countryside of York, delicious pastries in their spiritual home of Denmark, the medieval city of Bruges or the Opera House of Oslo, there is magnificent culture and diversity to embrace when cruising around Europe. It can be a fantastic way to see new destinations in a completely new way - from sea, with plenty of great excursions on land to enjoy, often with guided tours to ensure that you maximise your time spent at each location and get the most from your stays.

Choose a European cruise package that matches your interests. For example, you can opt for sun-soaked Mediterranean cruises which take in destinations in Spain and Greece, or colder-water cruises heading to Denmark - the home of Lego and the setting of Hamlet - or to Iceland, famous for its volcanic landscapes and incredible scenery. Norway has an equally inspiring natural landscape with its snowy peaks, crystal lakes and thunderous waterfalls and destinations such as Poland, Ireland and the Netherlands offer plenty of fantastic culture, museums, art galleries, shops and local cuisines. The beauty of a cruise lies in its diversity and richness of experience, so start to explore your next cruise holiday and book a trip to remember.


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