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  • Itineraries Select Itinerary Tahiti & the Society Islands Society Islands & Tuamotus Cook Islands & Society Islands Fiji, Tonga, Cook & Society Islands More Society Islands & Tahiti Islands of the Marquesas & Tuamotus Marquesas, Tuamotus & Society Islands Crossing Oceania: Fiji to Bali Immersive Indonesia: Singapore to Australia Crossing Melanesia: Australia to Fiji More Tuamotus & Society Islands
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paul gauguin cruise excursions

World's Best Luxury Tahiti, French Polynesia, Fiji and South Pacific Cruises

Discover paradise with french polynesia’s destination expert. check out our awards page for accolades from condé nast traveler , travel + leisure and so many more, m/s paul gauguin.

  • With only 330 guests, this award-wining luxury ship sails year-round from Tahiti on all-inclusive voyages throughout French Polynesia and the South Pacific
  • Crew to guest ratio of 1 to 1.5
  • All oceanview accommodations, nearly 70% with balconies
  • Space to guest ratio of nearly 58 to 1, one of the highest of any ship serving the North American market
  • All onboard gratuities included
  • Complimentary beverages including select wines and spirits, beer, soft drinks, bottled water, and hot beverages served throughout the ship
  • Butler service in categories B and above, including in-suite bar setup and SoundDock® for iPod®
  • In-suite minibar replenished daily with soft drinks, beer, and bottled water
  • State-of-the-art retractable Watersports Marina
  • Onboard dive program
  • Onboard lecture program
  • Two elegant restaurants and one pool-side grill
  • Well-being and vegetarian selections and special dietetic menus upon request
  • WiFi throughout the ship
  • Complimentary 24-hour room service
  • Complimentary in-room dining and movie channels

* Subject to availability as conditions allow. When unable to call there, we will be offering a tender to the pier and a free shuttle to Matira Beach, the island’s award-winning public beach that features restaurants, public facilities and shopping. Voted #1 in the best things to do in Bora Bora by U.S. News & World Report, Matira Beach boasts powdery white sand, waters in a thousand shades of blue, and is wonderfully uncrowded.

Awards and Accolades

The m/s Paul Gauguin ’s reputation as one of the finest ships at sea is celebrated by the numerous awards and accolades received over the years. We are proud and humbled that this exceptional ship—and Paul Gauguin Cruises—continue to be recognized by some of the top publications and critics in the industry, including these:

“#1 Small-Ship Ocean Cruise Line” Travel + Leisure , World’s Best Awards (2022)

“Best Small-Ship Cruise Line” Global Traveler , Leisure Lifestyle Awards (2022) Seventh Consecutive Year

“Gold List” Condé Nast Traveler , The World’s Best Cruises (2021)

“Favorite Cruise Line” The Trazees (2021) Second Consecutive Year

“Best Small Cruise Ship” USA Today , 10Best Readers’ Choice Awards (2020)

“Best Tahiti and French Polynesia Cruise Line” AFAR Travelers’ Choice Awards (2017-2020)

The opportunity to experience each destination in the most authentic, in-depth, and meaningful way is the very essence of luxury cruising with Paul Gauguin Cruises. Aboard our luxury vessel, you can choose from a wide array of shore excursions by land and sea that let you discover the dramatic beauty, rich history, and unique culture of your destination up close, in a small group.

For experienced and new divers! Parrotfish, clownfish, giant clams, sea turtles, sea anemones, eagle rays, sharks, octopi ... these are just a few of the dazzling species that make their home amid the translucent aqua lagoons and rainbow-colored coral reefs of French Polynesia, the Cook Islands, and the South Pacific. And they're yours to discover when you sail in luxury aboard the award-winning m/s Paul Gauguin!

Every voyage of The Gauguin offers optional diving excursions led by an expert dive team. Even if you've never dived before, you can take an onboard Discover SCUBA Diving class, earn credit toward PADI (Professional Association of Diving Instructors) certification, and dive in! The Gauguin offers PADI certification on board, as well as refresher courses, and is the only option for diving in the Marquesas.

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paul gauguin cruise excursions

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Our mission is to serve the 50+ traveler who's ready to cross a few items off their bucket list.

11 Reasons Why A Paul Gauguin Cruise Is The Ultimate All-Inclusive French Polynesia Experience 

paul gauguin cruise excursions

  • Australia and South Pacific
  • Cruises and Sailing
  • Destinations
  • French Polynesia
  • Types of Travel

French Polynesia is filled with jagged volcanic peaks, unspoiled palm-studded beaches, and shimmering lagoons teeming with marine life. It’s a spectacular collection of islands and its rich culture is a key part of its magical allure. A luxury small ship voyage with Paul Gauguin Cruises offers unparalleled opportunities for making once-in-a-lifetime memories in this bucket-list South Seas destination.

Paul Gauguin Cruises is celebrating 25 years of sailing in French Polynesia this year and the cruise line recently invited me to sail on its seven-night “Tahiti & the Society Islands” voyage aboard the m/s Paul Gauguin . I met a number of repeat guests on my cruise and it’s easy to see why Paul Gauguin Cruises has a loyal following. The ship and the destination will steal your heart.

Here are 11 reasons why a voyage with Paul Gauguin Cruises is the ultimate all-inclusive experience in dreamy French Polynesia.

M/S Paul Gauguin

1. Award-Winning Small Ship

The m/s Paul Gauguin , affectionately referred to as The Gauguin , offers an exceptionally luxurious small ship experience in French Polynesia. Recently reimagined and redesigned with a chic flair, The Gauguin accommodates just 330 guests in a setting of relaxed elegance. I loved the camaraderie that developed among the vibrant, active, and extraordinarily friendly community of guests.

As the longest continually sailing luxury cruise ship in the South Pacific, the intimate m/s Paul Gauguin was purpose-built with a shallow draft to expertly navigate the region’s turquoise lagoons and access remote hideaways that larger ships can’t reach. It’s the ideal way to explore this region. The award-winning boutique ship was voted “World’s Best Small Ship Ocean Cruise Line” in 2022 by Travel + Leisure readers, adding to the hundreds of additional accolades received over 25 years. In 2019, Paul Gauguin Cruises became part of the acclaimed Ponant family of luxurious small ships.

Pro Tip: Take advantage of the ship’s spacious outdoor decks and view the collection of Polynesian artifacts and excellent digital museum with work by French artist Paul Gauguin .

Bora Bora lagoon

2. Idyllic Island-Rich Itineraries

French Polynesia contains 118 islands and atolls, so you’ll want to see more than just one or two of these fairytale destinations while you’re there. Unpack once in your floating overwater bungalow and wake up somewhere new, effortlessly able to explore five or more legendary isles in a single trip. These pristine islands are undeveloped, tropical gems with magnificent scenery and no crowds. You’ll enjoy unforgettable days and nights on your voyage and the island views from the sea are truly spectacular.

Paul Gauguin Cruises offers seven unique cruise itineraries next year and nine in 2025, so it’s easy to go island-hopping on The Gauguin . No inter-island flight hassles and expenses are required. Longer stays in ports of call are a highlight of these immersive sailings, including overnights in Bora Bora and Moorea in many cases. These overnight visits provide the luxury of time in certain destinations, allowing for multiple activities and immersive exploration.

Pro Tip: It’s wise to arrive a few days before your cruise to adjust to the time zone changes. In addition, call Paul Gauguin Cruises 60 days before your journey to book a wide range of exciting fee-added shore excursions .

Fresh new decor aboard the m/s Paul Gauguin

3. Luxurious Overwater Accommodations

After enjoying a wealth of unmatched experiences, it’s nice to retreat to your own elegant private overwater stateroom or suite to enjoy some quiet time. The Gauguin ’s well-appointed accommodations all offer magnificent ocean views and nearly 70 percent feature private balconies. I loved watching Technicolor sunrises and sunsets from my overwater balcony and toasting our day’s adventures each evening.

The ship’s spacious accommodations have been beautifully fitted with high-quality amenities and special touches, while some upper categories even offer butler service. Bathrooms feature full-sized tubs and in-room refrigerators are stocked daily by attentive room stewards. Wheelchair-accessible staterooms and family-friendly accommodations are available as well.

Pro Tip: To maximize charging options for electronics on your trip, bring a multi-port travel adapter and European plug adapters.

M/S Paul Gauguin service team

4. Extraordinary Service

The heart of The Gauguin is the fabulous staff and crew led by its charismatic French captain. The ship features a crew-to-guest ratio of 1:1.5, one of the highest at sea. The service on my sailing was unparalleled, as was the incredible spirit. There’s an irresistible enthusiasm present and the warmth and smiles are genuine.

It amazed me how much the team on The Gauguin went out of its way to provide personalized attention to guests on board. By the second day, the staff and crew knew our names, and others we saw as well. Numerous staff and crew members have been with the ship for 10 years or more, while five crew members are celebrating 25 years this year.

Pro Tip: See The Gauguin ’s Travel Concierge for help arranging e-bikes, car rentals, and restaurant reservations in ports of call.

Paul Gauguin Cruises’ cocktails

5. Exceptional All-Inclusive Value

I often find myself daydreaming about my days in paradise aboard The Gauguin . The cruise exceeded my expectations and it was a sensational value compared to land-based resort packages in French Polynesia. So much is included when sailing with Paul Gauguin Cruises and the memories are priceless.

A luxury cruise aboard the m/s Paul Gauguin includes accommodations, onboard meals at every venue, 24-hour room service, complimentary cocktails and beverages, extraordinary shows and entertainment, Polynesian cultural immersion and activities, expert presentations, all shipboard gratuities, a variety of watersports, complimentary Wi-Fi, access to exclusive island escapes, and more. The all-inclusive pricing and incredible value make a voyage with Paul Gauguin Cruises a relaxing and stress-free escape.

Pro Tip: If you’re celebrating an anniversary, honeymoon, or vow renewal on The Gauguin , you’ll receive an invitation to a complimentary Polynesian blessing ceremony and an in-stateroom bottle of champagne. Additional celebration packages are available. 

Gourmet meals on The Gauguin

6. Outstanding Fine Dining

Pack your appetite and plan to fully enjoy all the memorable culinary experiences on the m/s Paul Gauguin . The ship’s award-winning chefs create a wide selection of gourmet international cuisines and locally sourced Polynesian specialties, all carefully prepared and artfully served. The ship also does an excellent job catering to food allergies and special diets.

Guests can have five-star meals in their choice of three fully included fine-dining venues — La Veranda, Le Grill, and the L’Etoile main dining room, which offers a rotating daily menu of delectable choices. Wine selections are excellent and unlimited pours are included. Complimentary room service is also available around the clock, so enjoy the laid-back luxury of breakfast on your balcony or in bed.

Pro Tip: Head to La Veranda to make specialty dinner reservations at Le Grill and La Veranda once you’re on board. And don’t miss afternoon tea time; the ship’s pastries and desserts are amazing.

cruise line's fabulous troupe of local Tahitian cultural ambassadors

7. Authentic Polynesian Cultural Immersion

It’s rare for a ship to so beautifully showcase a destination’s culture. The m/s Paul Gauguin has been sailing year-round in French Polynesia for 25 years . The immersion in French Polynesia is seamlessly carried throughout the onboard experience. Leading this is a fabulous onboard troupe of local Tahitian hosts and hostesses, Les Gauguins and Les Gauguines , who authentically bring the Polynesian culture and spirit to life. The Polynesian culture is rich, vibrant, and positive — and the soul of Tahiti permeates the entire ship.

This deep sense of place was meaningful for me. I enjoyed all the Polynesian specialties served at meals, enriching Polynesian programming and entertainment with Les Gauguins and Les Gauguines , the ship’s memorable Polynesian Night, and connections with local Tahitians. Longer itineraries allow for even more immersion.

Pro Tip: Take part in Polynesian activities and events and bring tropical-inspired clothes to wear for Polynesian Night. A selection is also available in the ship’s well-stocked boutique. 

Palm-fringed Motu Mahana

8. Exclusive Private Retreats

Paul Gauguin Cruises’ alluring private getaways are idyllic slices of heaven filled with memorable indulgences. Palm-fringed Motu Mahana , the cruise line’s exclusive islet off shore from unspoiled Taha’a, is a feast for the senses. This lovely jewel is a guest favorite and the barbecue banquet here is a gastronomic delight. I loved snorkeling and swimming in the crystal-clear turquoise waters, enjoying tropical drinks served in coconuts, and being serenaded with Tahitian melodies by Les Gauguins and Les Gauguines .

While there’s so much to experience in Bora Bora, don’t miss Paul Gauguin Cruises’ stunning private beach with jaw-dropping views of Mount Otemanu. The sugary white-sand beach and snorkeling opportunities are outstanding. 

Pro Tip: Bring your snorkeling gear and water shoes with you to the private retreats.

Paul Gauguin watersports marina

9. Watersports Marina

French Polynesia is filled with extraordinary coral reefs and cerulean lagoons; it’s paradise on Earth for watersports lovers. Paul Gauguin Cruises makes it easy for guests to experience the ocean’s many delights. A highlight of my cruise was snorkeling through French Polynesia’s natural aquariums, surrounded by graceful rays and tropical fish in a kaleidoscope of colors.

The Gauguin features a specially designed watersports platform on the ship, perfect for launching complimentary kayaks and paddleboards in numerous ports of call. Watersports equipment is available at Paul Gauguin Cruises’ private retreats and guests can check out free snorkel equipment for the duration of their cruise.

Pro Tip: If you plan to take advantage of The Gauguin ’s popular fee-based scuba diving activities, book your dives as soon as you’re on board.

10. Entertainment And Enrichment Programs

The Gauguin features an extensive array of engaging programs and outstanding entertainment throughout the day and evening. In addition to all the activities provided by Les Gauguins and Les Gauguines , special guest lectures, a wide variety of musical entertainment, and extravagant Polynesian performances are offered. Many resorts charge extra for these events.

Some of my favorite performances were the incredible French Polynesian folkloric shows of songs and dances by the Moorea Swing Boys and O Tahiti E local dance troupes. Famed actor Bruce McGill was also a guest speaker on our cruise. The crew show and musical entertainment in La Palette and the Piano Bar are superb.

Pro Tip: Allow plenty of time to enjoy the ship’s activities and check the Daily Program each evening to plan your next day.

11. Moana Explorer Program For Kids & Families

French Polynesia is an extraordinary destination for families to make unforgettable memories and celebrate special events together. The luxury cruise experience aboard the m/s Paul Gauguin is well-suited for families and multigenerational groups, and there were a number of both on our sailing. Families were thrilled with their experiences and some were already planning their return trips.

The cruise line’s complimentary Moana Explorer Program features enriching activities and experiences for kids and teens ages 7–15. Created in partnership with Te mana o te moana , a South Seas education and preservation foundation, the naturalist-led program includes daily fun-filled adventures and hands-on activities that help young guests and families learn about French Polynesia’s islands, Tahitian culture, and marine life. This outstanding program is offered on certain sailings during the holidays and summer months.

Pro Tip: Many activities are outdoors and the sun’s rays are intense. Families should pack long-sleeve rash guards, hats, and water shoes.

Image of Nancy Schretter

Nancy is founder of the Family Travel Network, launched in partnership with America Online. She serves on the Board of the Family Travel Association and is a consultant and frequent presenter at top travel industry conferences and events. Nancy is a member of the North American Travel Journalists Association and the International Food, Wine, and Travel Writers Association. She was honored with the Family Travel Association's Mike Janes Media Member Award in 2022.

South Pacific Cruises

  • m/s Paul Gauguin
  • About Paul Gauguin Cruises Tahiti
  • Archive by category "Cruise Itineraries"

Tahiti & Society Islands

Posted on December 31, 2016 by sunstonetours

Aerial view of Bora Bora

8-days sailing to five islands, the luxurious small-ship the m/s Paul Gauguin will bring you closer to Tahiti, Huahine, Taha’a, Bora Bora, and Moorea for an experience not possible on larger ships. Each island will charm you in a different way.

Society Islands & Tahiti Iti

Posted on December 30, 2016 by deconspray

paul gauguin cruise excursions

On this 8-day cruise, Paul Gauguin Cruises offers a front-row seat to everything this bewitching half of Tahiti offers. It also features Bora Bora, Moorea, Huahine, and our own private paradise off the coast of Taha’a. Come sail the waters of French Polynesia that are our small ship’s home.

Society Islands & Tuamotus

Posted on December 30, 2016 by sunstonetours

paul gauguin cruise excursions

This 11 day Society Islands & the Tuamotus cruise offer unlimited discovery, exploration and adventure, offering visits to some of French Polynesia’s most-requested islands. Divers will want to discover Rangiroa’s lagoon which is one of the world’s most coveted diving destinations with its fascinating marine life that includes tropical fish, sharks, rays, turtles, and dolphins. Fakarava is the second-largest atoll in the Tuamotus and home to a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve. This is one of the few places in the South Pacific with a marine habitat that begs to be experienced with its rich ecosystem.

Cook Islands & Society Islands

Posted on December 29, 2016 by sunstonetours

paul gauguin cruise excursions

This 12-day, 11-night odyssey showcases the region’s incredible diversity of scenery, from Aitutaki’s low-lying islands to the jagged peaks and deep valleys of fertile Rarotonga, which was simply called “Paradise” by the first European explorers. Continue to the Society Islands to delight in the South Pacific’s crown jewels—Bora Bora, Taha’a, Huahine, and Moorea.

Marquesas, Tuamotus & Society Islands

Posted on December 28, 2016 by sunstonetours

paul gauguin cruise excursions

15 day, 14 night Marquesas, Tuamotus & Society Islands South Pacific cruise sailing roundtrip from Papeete, Tahiti aboard the recently renovated m/s Paul Gauguin. First call at the breathtaking isle of Bora Bora. Then it’s on to the Tuamotus, specifically Fakarava, an atoll known for its pristine beaches, rare wildlife, and exceptional diving. Next, explore the mist-covered Marquesas, where you’ll discover the islands of Fatu Hiva, Hiva Oa, Ua Huka, and Nuku Hiva. On these wild islands you’ll find waterfalls, wild stallions, tiki sculptures, and an arboretum, among other delights. More enjoyment awaits on Taha’a (Motu Mahana), our own private motu, and a day at spectacular Moorea.

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Paul gauguin cruise vessels.

With three restaurants, a luxury spa, and our own watersports marina at your fingertips, as well as an attentive staff of 217, rest assured that your stay aboard The Gauguin is everything you want it to be and more. 

Paul Gauguin

Paul Gauguin Cruises has been sailing since 1998 and continues to operate the Tahiti, Fiji and South Pacific itineraries. The Paul Gauguin cruises are an incredible way to discover all of the beauty French Polynesia and the South Pacific has to offer by boat. Read further to see some of the destinations we offer travel bookings for. 

paul gauguin cruise excursions

Destination Guides

Tahiti vacations and paul gauguin cruise

Tahiti Vacations

Discover the beauty of Tahiti when you travel by cruise ship. Book your Paul Gauguin cruise to see all of Tahiti today.

paul gauguin cruise excursions

Fiji Vacations

We offer five different Paul Gaugin cruises which all tour different parts of Fiji and each cruise has its own unique experience.

Marquesas Islands paul gauguin cruise

Marquesas Islands Vacations

See the Marquesas Islands and discover all they have to offer when you book a cruise through French Polynesia.

paul gauguin cruise excursions

Cook Islands Vacations

See the Cook Islands by cruise boat and visit the Northern and Southern Cook Islands on your dream vacation.

Paul gauguin cruise French Polynesia vacations

French Polynesia Vacations

See all of the islands of French Polynesia - from Bora Bora to Tahiti and Papeete, Moorea, and more. Book your Paul Gauguin cruise to visit French Polynesia.

Book Your Paul Gauguin Cruise

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Paul Gauguin

Paul Gauguin cruise ship

Cruise line Paul Gauguin Cruises (Ponant Cruises)

  • Papeete (Tahiti Island French Polynesia)

Paul Gauguin current position

Paul Gauguin current location is at South Pacific Ocean (coordinates -9.96508 S / -139.12368 W) cruising en route to PF HAPATONI. The AIS position was reported 47 minutes ago.

Current itinerary of Paul Gauguin

Paul Gauguin current cruise is 14 days, round-trip Islands of the Marquesas Tuamotus . Prices start from USD 8910 (double occupancy rates). The itinerary starts on 08 Jun, 2024 and ends on 22 Jun, 2024 .

Specifications of Paul Gauguin

  •   Itineraries
  •   Review
  •   Wiki

Paul Gauguin Itineraries

Paul gauguin review, review of paul gauguin.

MS Paul Gauguin cruise ship is currently owned and operated by Paul Gauguin Cruises (aka "PG Cruises", Ponant -owned brand). In 1997, the vessel entered service for RSSC-Radisson Seven Seas Cruises (in 2006 renamed Regent Seven Seas Cruises ). In 2009, the cruise liner was acquired by Pacific Beachcomber (French Polynesia luxury hotels and resorts operator).

The vessel (IMO number 9111319) is currently France- flagged (MMSI 578001600) and registered in Mata-Utu/ Wallis and Futuna . Prior to Ponant's acquisition, the ship was Bahamas-flagged (MMSI 311652000) and registered in Nassau .

The ship was refurbished in 2012 for USD 7 million and last drydocked in 2021 (February-March, in Singapore ). Refurbishment 2021 included technical upgrades (energy-saving), enhanced interior spaces (dark woodwork, new warm color schemes with natural tones, woven textiles, traditional artworks), renovation of all staterooms and public spaces (lounges, bars, restaurants, wellness, shop, Lobby, Pool Deck). WiFi is complimentary and unlimited.

In early-August 2019, the French luxury shipping company Ponant Cruises announced the acquisition of Paul Gauguin Shipping Ltd (headquartered in Bellevue, WA USA) and its brand "Paul Gauguin Cruises". After the acquisition, both cruise companies kept their management. This means that MS Paul Gauguin's current shipowner is Ponant.

History - construction and ownership

The 332-passenger ship Paul Gauguin is a top-luxury Tahiti-based liner operating year-round in French Polynesia. In 2012, the vessel was rated one of the world's "top 10 best small cruise ships".

MS Paul Gauguin cruise ship

The liner was specifically designed for navigation in the shallow seas of French Polynesia. The boat's low draft allows visiting small seaports. The onboard experience is marked by the informal and relaxing environment, 5-star hotel amenities, premium service and luxury. The ship offers the longest continually and highest-rated luxury Tahiti cruise deals. Crew-to-Guest ratio is 1-to-1,5 (among the industry's highest). Space-to-Guest ratio is 58 to 1 - again among the highest on ships serving the North American market.

PG Cruises deals are inclusive of gratuities, soft beverages and alcohol (select fine wines, premium spirits). Wi-Fi hotspots are shipwide and complimentary, Internet access is at an additional charge. Entertainment features both classic French and traditional Polynesia songs and musical performances.

Decks and Cabins

MS Paul Gauguin staterooms (160 total, in 9 grades) provide max passenger capacity 352 (in addition to the 220 crew-staff). All cabins are outside and with Queen-size beds. Nearly 70% of all cabins have private step-out balconies. Of all staterooms, 9 are Suites and 80 are Balcony.

Cabin sizes range between 200-590 ft2 / 19-55 m2 (including the balconies).

The boat has 9 decks , of which 7 are passenger-accessible and 5 with cabins.

Shipboard dining options - Food and Drinks

The ship has all three restaurants. Special dietetic menus and vegetarian selections are available upon request. Complimentary beverages (also wine and premium liquor), 24-hour room service and in-room dining are also provided.

Dining Room L’Etoile is with open seating and a la carte menus. La Veranda Restaurant is buffet-style and offers breakfast and lunch (with a la carte lunch menu and alfresco seating). Le Grill is the poolside food bar.

MS Paul Gauguin cruise ship

Shipboard entertainment options - Fun and Sport

MS Paul Gauguin onboard gratuities are all included in the fares. An additional option to choose is the possibility to go on unforgettable shore excursions. Guests can snorkel and scuba dive directly from the cruise ship. Try the watersports marina, pamper at the extensive spa and experience all luxurious attributes. The Polynesian flair fills the atmosphere aboard with informality. The staff and entertainers are local Tahitians who add a unique personality to every Tahiti cruise. Interesting onboard dive and lecture programs are held each day of the voyage.

Watersports activities are offered complimentary in each of the itinerary's ports of call. The ship has an aft-located retractable marina platform serving company's watersports programming. Snorkeling gear is provided complimentary to all passengers.

MS Paul Gauguin Lounges & Bars include Le Grand Salon, Piano Bar, La Palette Lounge (live piano performances), Casino Bar, Bar du Soleil, Captain's Reception Lounge, Internet Cafe, Fare Tahiti Gallery. Other facilities include Deep Nature Spa (Algotherma), Fitness Center, Sun Deck, Promenade Deck, Jacuzzi (outdoor whirlpool hot tub), swimming pool, La Boutique, Travel and Dive Desks, Laundry and Dry-cleaning services.

Ponant's French Polynesia cruise itinerary program

MS Paul Gauguin itinerary program is based on South Pacific (French Polynesia and Tahiti) cruises on roundtrips from homeport Papeete (Tahiti Island, Society Islands) . Itineraries are operated the whole year-round.

  • 7-night "Tahiti and Society Islands" - Huahine Island (Society), Tahaa Island (Society), Bora Bora Island (Society, overnight), Moorea Island (Society, overnight), Papeete Tahiti (overnight before debarkation)
  • 10-night "The Society Islands and Tuamotus Islands" - Huahine Island (Society), Bora Bora Island (Society, overnight), Rangiroa Atoll (Tuamotus), Fakarava Atoll (Tuamotus), sea day, Tahaa Island (Society), Moorea Island (Society, overnight), Papeete Tahiti (overnight before debarkation)
  • 11-night "Cook Islands and Society Islands" - Huahine Island (Society), sea day, Aitutaki Island (Cook Islands), Rarotonga Island (Cook Islands), sea day, Bora Bora Island (Society, overnight), Tahaa Island (Society), Moorea Island (Society, overnight), Papeete Tahiti (overnight before debarkation)
  • The 14-night "Marquesas, Tuamotus and Society Islands" itinerary is a roundtrip from Papeete to Huahine, Bora Bora, Rangiroa, Fakarava, seaday, Tahaa/Motu Mahana, Moorea.

In July 2018, PG Cruises made an inaugural port visit in Vairao (Tahiti) . In 2018, Papeete cruise port started offering new fly-cruise package via a partnership with two airlines - United (USA Chicago -based) and French Bee (France Paris -based).

For season 2019, Paul Gauguin Cruises itinerary program was upgraded with the following itineraries, themed as:

  • 14-day "Marquesas, Tuamotus and Society Islands"
  • 11-day "Cook Islands and the Society Islands"
  • 10-day "Society Islands and Tuamotus"
  • 7-day "Tahiti and Society Islands"

Most voyages include International Date Line cruising and visiting Tonga and Fiji. Fares started from around USD 590 per person per day (double-occupancy rates) with included roundtrip USA airfare (from Los Angeles ). On all itineraries, passengers receive complimentary access to the company's two private properties:

  • Motu Mahana Island (PG Cruises' private island located off Tahaa Island 's coast) where are offered complimentary watersports, traditional activities, barbecue parties, cocktails from floating bars).
  • The company's second property is a private beach on Bora Bora Island where as activities are offered snorkeling, paddleboarding, bar service.

Paul Gauguin Cruises 2021 itinerary program includes a new 11-day itinerary (Tuamotus and Society Islands) plus 12- 13-day itineraries that visit Fiji, Tonga, Cook Islands, Society Islands. The new 11-day itinerary visits Motu Mahana (company's private island near Tahaa, Society Islands). Departures (in 2021) were scheduled for January 23rd and December 4th. The itinerary visits Huahine (Society Islands), Motu Mahana (Society Islands), Bora Bora (overnight), seaday, Rangiroa (Tuamotus), Fakarava (Tuamotus), seaday, Motu Mahana, Moorea (Society Islands) and Papeete (Tahiti, French Polynesia).

In 2022, Paul Gauguin Cruises introduced 4 new itineraries "Tahiti and The Society Islands" (7-night), "Society Islands and Tuamotus" (10-night), "Cook Islands and Society Islands" (11-night) and "Marquesas, Tuamotus and Society Islands" (14-night). The company also scheduled cruises from Tahiti to Fiji with "Fiji, Tonga, Cook and Society Islands" itineraries (12-13-night). Paul Gauguin's 2022 call ports included Papeete , Moorea , Tahaa (Motu Mahana) , Bora Bora , Aitutaki , Vavau , Savusavu (Vanua Levu) , Suva (Viti Levu) , Beqa Island (13-night itinerary), and Lautoka (Viti Levu) .

In 2024, PONANT's Paul Gauguin Cruises debuted two new itineraries - the 7-night "More Society Islands & Tahiti" (Huahine, Raiatea, Bora Bora) and the 14-night "Islands of the Marquesas & Tuamotus" (featuring maiden visits to Hatiheu, Nuku Hiva, Hakahau, Ua Pou).

  • 14-night "Islands of the Marquesas and Tuamotus" itinerary (roundtrip from Papeete/Tahiti) visits Fakarava, Omoa/Fatu Hiva, Atuona/Hiva Oa, Hapatoni/Tahuata, Hatiheu/Nuku Hiva, Hakahau/Ua Pou, Rangiroa, Bora Bora, Motu Mahana/Tahaa
  • 7-night "Tahiti and the Society Islands" itinerary (roundtrip from Papeete/Tahiti) visits Huahine, Motu Mahana, Bora Bora (overnight), Moorea (overnight)
  • 10-night "Society Islands and Tuamotus" itinerary (roundtrip from Papeete/Tahiti) visits Huahine, Bora Bora (overnight), Rangiroa, Fakarava, Motu Mahana, Moorea

PGC's 2024 program also featured a visit to Motu Mahana (Tahaa) on every MS Paul Gauguin voyage.

Paul Gauguin - user reviews and comments

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MS Paul Gauguin cruise ship

Paul Gauguin ship related cruise news

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Paul Gauguin Wiki

The cruise ship was launched in 1997 for Radisson Seven Seas Cruises ( RSSC ) and christened on December 19, 1997. The granddaughter of the painter (Maria Gauguin) attended the naming ceremony, which took place in Port Everglades (Fort Lauderdale) Florida . Godmother of the ultra-luxury liner is the wife of Francois-Xavier Poylo (vessel's architect) - Mrs Carole Poylo.

Paul Gauguin Cruises 2020 schedule featured 3 unusual itineraries.

16-day "Fiji to Bali" (itinerary April 11-27) from Lautoka to Benoa - prices from USD 7950

13-day "Fiji, Tonga, Cook and Society Islands" (itinerary March 23 - April 11) from Papeete to Lautoka - prices from USD 7900

New itineraries (introduced in 2018 November) included:

7-day "Tahiti and Society Islands" - Huahine Island (Society), Tahaa Island (Society), Bora Bora Island (Society, overnight), Moorea Island (Society, overnight), Papeete Tahiti (overnight before debarkation)

10-day "The Society Islands and Tuamotus Islands" - Huahine Island (Society), Bora Bora Island (Society, overnight), Rangiroa Atoll (Tuamotus), Fakarava Atoll (Tuamotus), sea day, Tahaa Island (Society), Moorea Island (Society, overnight), Papeete Tahiti (overnight before debarkation)

11-day "Cook Islands and Society Islands" - Huahine Island (Society), sea day, Aitutaki Island (Cook Islands), Rarotonga Island (Cook Islands), sea day, Bora Bora Island (Society, overnight), Tahaa Island (Society), Moorea Island (Society, overnight), Papeete Tahiti (overnight before debarkation).

MS Paul Gauguin refurbishments review

The ship's last drydock refurbishment was in 2023 (February 6-March 4) conducted at Sembawang Shipyard in Singapore . The drydocking was for routine maintenance (machinery overhaul, classification works, cabin upgrades).

Drydock 2021 (February) in Singapore. included the renovation of all staterooms and interiors.

In 2012, the vessel underwent a USD 7 million drydock refurbishment . The list of changes in onboard amenities included new dining menus, an enhanced spa menu, remodeled Casino Lounge, cabins upgrades, public spaces renovation. New cruise shore excursions were also added in the PG Cruises program.

MS Paul Gauguin is currently the only cruise ship from Tahiti that offers year-round roundtrips, which include visits to the Society Islands, Tuamotus archipelago and the Marquesas Islands - all in the South Pacific Ocean.

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The Best Cruise Ships in the World: The Gold List 2024

By CNT Editors

Best Cruise Ships in the World The Gold List 2024

Consider Gold List the answer to the question our editors get asked more than any other: What are your favorite places to stay? Our 30th annual iteration of the world’s greatest hotels and cruises captures nearly a year’s worth of work: This collection represents hundreds of hours of researching, scouting, and impassioned debating by our team of editors in seven cities across the globe. But more than that, it reflects our ongoing love affair with the places where we stay, which often become our gateways to entire destinations. Read on to inspire your next cruise.

See the full Gold List here .

Oceania Cruises' Marina is one of 12 ships chosen by our editors for 2024.

Best Cruise Ships in the World The Gold List 2024

Celebrity Beyond Arrow

Cruise ships often get compared to floating hotels or resorts, but here’s one that feels like a floating Vegas show. Applause, please, for the glittering peacock made from Swarovski crystals and the Magic Carpet platform that shimmies up and down the ship, cantilevered over the water for some of the best seats in the house, while in the Martini Bar, a troupe of bartenders juggle shakers to the sound of “We Didn’t Start the Fire.” Beyond is one of the largest ships in Celebrity’s Edge class, and all that space is used to maximize the drama. A whole corridor is filled with a glowing installation of bronze sculptures reflected in infinity mirrors; a favorite anchorage was Eden, a beautiful, biophiliac bubble for hiding away in, watching the ship’s wake through triple-height windows and dawdling in swivel chairs that resemble green carnations. As for the cast, there are some stellar performers: Kelly Hoppen designed most of the interiors; Daniel Boulud’s debut signature restaurant at sea, Le Voyage, has an impeccable, globe-trotting menu alighting on Brazilian moqueca and tamarind prawns. But top of the bill is Captain Kate McCue, the first American woman to captain a cruise ship. A captain hasn’t been this synonymous with their ship since the days of Merrill Stubing; follow her social media for a glimpse into the art of ship navigation. During our short, prelaunch cruise, we had an itinerary that involved looping round and round the Isle of Wight—a short trip, but one that was big on sheer spectacle. Three-night sailings from $300 per person. —Rick Jordan

Delfin II. Amazon

Delfin II Arrow

The Amazon River has the opacity of chocolate milk and is almost deathlike in its stillness—which is wild when you consider how much life thrives there. It was on a nine-day journey through Peru with Lindblad Expeditions and National Geographic that I learned this, as we spent five of those days exploring the jungle by boat. Our chariot: the Delfin II , a Relais & Châteaux vessel with 14 thoughtfully appointed staterooms.

Most days began with a crack-of-dawn skiff ride soundtracked by the squall of jewel-winged, dusky-headed parakeets. The photographers pulled out their football lenses and the birders gasped from behind their binoculars as naturalists pointed out an elegant snowy egret picking its way through a mudbank, a neotropic cormorant spreading its gothy black wings like a vampire, and the somber Jabiru stork, the largest flying bird in South America, standing like a dour English butler on a naked tree limb. Also flagged were capuchin monkeys, giant river otters, flamboyant bromeliads, and—after dark—scores of caimans and capybaras.

We spent one muggy morning in a Kukama village, where indigenous women wove raffia bowls and cooked catfish, and another morning paddling the river—an outing which culminated with a pod of pink river dolphins leaping from the water mere feet from our kayaks. (Even our seen-it-all naturalist, Sandro, clapped like a schoolgirl.)

This deep in the Amazon jungle, there were no other tourists. When we did see signs of human life, they were usually fishermen or park rangers. And because there was no Wi-Fi on the Delfin II and a near total blackout on cell reception, downtime was spent attending lectures on Amazonian ecology, sampling native fruits (how the aptly named ice cream bean hasn’t been pitched on Shark Tank yet, I’ll never know), and buddying up to the ship bar, where I made fast friends of fellow guests. (Expedition cruises always draw a fascinating lot; my cohort included a microbiologist, metaphysical transcendentalist, and one of the earliest Apple employees.)

The highlight of the trip, however, was hiking through the jungle with a local tracker who showed us a brown-throated three-toed sloth, Goliath bird-eating tarantula, junior anaconda, and a century-old strangler fig. When we finally emerged from the bush, we were treated to a spectacular tangerine-and-charcoal sunset punctured by bolts of lighting. It was surreal and intense, just like everything else in this untouched corner of the world. Eight-day sailings from $5,730 per person. —Ashlea Halpern

paul gauguin cruise excursions

Ritz-Carlton Evrima Arrow

Ritz-Carlton’s first foray into cruising, the Evrima is a hotel-at-sea experience that might just be the antidote to all the big ship itineraries. Think ultra-small ship luxury (at half the capacity of the Seabourns and Regents) with plenty of scenery options to choose from—the European Mediterranean (routes from Turkey to the Canary Islands) from spring through fall, and the Caribbean (San Juan to St. Barts) in winter—and a younger crowd than most of the luxury cruise market; mostly culture lovers with a dearth of cruising experience who can't wait to get ashore to the Côte d’Azur village restaurants. The 624-foot ship is the first in a fleet of three emerging over the next few years, and it still feels spacious with 149 suites, two pools, a cigar humidor, six bars (the interior Living Room and top-floor Observation Lounge, The Bar, and bars located at the Marina Terrace, the Pool House, and Mistral), a beauty salon and spa deck, water-level marina terrace with water toys, and a fitness center. The 246 staff range from deck crew to your cabin’s personal concierge, all of whom are dubbed the ship’s Ladies and Gentlemen—but titles feel almost superfluous aboard Evrima , where everyone from the tender drivers to dining leads will pause to actually get to know you and recall your name and story (and even your drink order) to make the entire experience feel organic and warm. It’s almost like you’re spending the night in someone’s home, which just so happens to be a 624-foot mega-yacht. And the Evrima itinerary has plenty of free time and overnight ports of call in its sailings, so you can head ashore for a day, or even an entire evening late into the night—gallivanting, dining, and imbibing with the new friends you'll no doubt meet onboard. Seven-night sailings from $5,800 per person. —Shannon McMahon

Image may contain Furniture Bed Room Bedroom Indoors Cushion Pillow and Interior Design

Oceania Marina Arrow

Is there any Marina passenger who doesn’t wish—even for a second—to confine himself to his stateroom on debarkation day? Perhaps only the smarty pants who booked their next cruise before this one ends. Otherwise, how can an epicurean cruiser (that’s Marina ’s crowd) not pine for another shot at the new wine list starring 80 highly coveted, hard-to-snag labels, including swoon-worthy Super Tuscans? You’ll long for one more brag-worthy chance to sip The Mascot, a label from Harlan family pedigree (think cult fave Harlan Estate); the Polo Grill’s deft sommelier knows exactly which prime steak pairs best. Despite eight compelling complimentary restaurants (Red Ginger’s signature lobster pad thai is still a must-devour), Marina vibes far more than great meals. Work up a sweat storm playing pickleball on deck 16 or braving core conditioning in the gym. Melt into a marine detox wrap (I love the juniper and lemon scent) at Aquamar Spa + Vitality Center, then sink into the spa terrace’s bubbling hot tub. Get down and dirty in the artist loft by painting a Venetian mask and playing Impressionist. In the hands-on culinary center, learn to cure a fish or preserve a lemon. Come May 2024, Marina debuts a splashy redo. Fall in love again with revamped avocado toast—bravo to the taco-spiced shrimp topping—in the new wellness-driven Aquamar kitchen. Where you lie your head hardly matters. An entry 291-square-foot stateroom starring a four-pillow, soft-sheet bed feels mighty spacious and sports Bulgari shampoo. That said, the top-to-bottom penthouse suites’ glam reno is beyond covetable, from the expanded bath to a boatload of enviable perks. Ten-day sailings from $1,999 per person. —Janice Wald Henderson

paul gauguin cruise excursions

Trollfjord Arrow

Who better to guide you through Norway’s most remote reaches—including the Svalbard archipelago, the northernmost inhabited islands on the planet—than a Norwegian cruise company that knows the area’s every crag and fjord? Hurtigruten is an Oslo-based line whose ships have traversed these waters since 1893, ferrying freight, mail, and passengers to the communities along the rugged coast. In 2023, to celebrate its 130th anniversary, the company’s flagship, the newly refurbished, 500-passenger MS Trollfjord (named for a fjord in the Vesterålen archipelago) began sailing two hybrids of its original 34-port Norwegian Coastal Express, calling at several of the towns and villages on the original route. From September through April, the North Cape Express (a 13-day, 16-port itinerary) sails from Oslo to the North Cape and then south to Bergen. In the summertime, the Svalbard Express’s eight-day journey begins in Bergen and progresses north, with extended port calls and excursions in seven towns before entering the Arctic Circle and pulling into Longyearbyen, a mining town on Spitsbergen, Svalbard’s main island. On both routes Trollfjord offers its (mostly European) passengers an uncommon way to explore the region, with uniquely Nordic cultural touches to connect them to the country. There’s a pre-boarding spread of Norwegian fare in the ship’s departure lounge, and Trollfjord ’s three restaurants prioritize Scandinavian cuisine (salmon, reindeer, and lingonberries, oh my!) and the food culture of the indigenous Sámi people. The ship’s 277 staterooms and 12 suites (with walk-in closets, corner bathtubs and floor-to-ceiling windows) offer a cozy retreat from the sometimes-harsh weather. And typically Nordic diversions such as aquavit tastings, oceanview saunas and polar plunges leave you in no doubt about where you are and who you’re sailing with. 10-day sailings from $3,082 per person. —Sarah Greaves-Gabbadon

Cruise Ship Regent Seven Seas Navigator

Seven Seas Navigator Arrow

Imagine the most luxurious hotel you’ve ever stayed in. That’s precisely what stepping onboard the Regent Seven Seas Cruises Navigator feels like. And while the opulence and grandeur shine through every square inch of space, it’s worth mentioning that the staff are what make the experience memorable, remembering your name, preferences, likes, and dislikes from the second you step afoot the eight-deck vessel.

The 248 ultraluxe all-suite accommodations feel like your home away from home—despite their capacious interiors—and your personalized steward makes sure of that with thoughtful touches from the moment you check in. Thanks to a revamp in 2019, the ship feels pristine with a new library—complete with a faux fireplace—and sleek state-of-the-art furnishings (including the cruise line’s bespoke mattresses and bed linens) in each of the rooms. However, what makes the Navigator stand out from its counterparts is its intimate size, as it’s the smallest in Regent’s fleet. Everything onboard feels just an arm’s reach away, and you’ll quickly bond with fellow passengers after spending the day together on one of the complimentary shore excursions, such as tours by local guides, cooking classes, and other intimate adventures.

During my Mediterranean voyage, days were spent immersing ourselves in new cities, whereas nights began with a freshly shaken ice-cold martini followed by an exuberant dinner, with a stop in the Seven Seas Lounge for whatever was on tap that night, ranging from cabaret to karaoke. At the end of the journey, I left wanting more and with a suitcase full of clean clothes, thanks to one of the many attentive touches onboard: the included laundry service. 10-night sailings from $3,360 per person. —Rachel Dube

paul gauguin cruise excursions

Seabourn Ovation Arrow

“We are not the Rat Pack,” quips Andrew Pedder, the witty Yorkshire-born captain of Seabourn Ovation. He's referring to himself and the other senior officers, for any guests who may have wandered into their impromptu panel session instead of the musical show taking place later that evening. The Q&A—which covers everything from the prettiest ports to the number of Champagne bottles typically consumed during a seven-day voyage—is part of a last-minute program of activities arranged for an unexpected sea day when it’s too windy to dock in the South of France. This is mid-October, on one of the ship’s jaunts around the Mediterranean for the season, and no one seems to mind the change of plan (although when we do explore, all the islands we visit—Menorca, Corsica, Elba—are blissfully tourist-free). It simply means more time for spa treatments, soaks in the outdoor hot tubs, and afternoon tea in the observation bar. Even then, it only feels like there are 60 passengers onboard, rather than 600. The restaurants are excellent, from Sushi, where you can sit at the counter watching the Japanese chefs at work, to poolside Earth & Ocean for Tandoori-style rotisserie chicken and Madras-style white bean cassoulet. Suites are spacious, each one with a balcony. West End–standard entertainment includes a magician and a chart-topping classical singer. But what makes this ultraluxe ship really memorable is the relaxed, on-point service by staff who remember your name and coffee order, or even a familiar face from a sailing five years ago. Seven-day sailings from $2,649 per person. —Emma Love

The Restaurant Silver Endeavour

Silver Endeavour Arrow

Silversea is defined by its far-flung itineraries and exceptional onboard service (think Moët Champagne as you take in an iceberg calving in Antarctica). But the 220-passenger Silver Endeavour, new to the fleet and already a classic, raises every bar. Rooms start at a spacious 356 square feet and have luxury perks like pillow menus and a personalized bar, making them the best in all of Silversea’s array of ships. As far as food goes, premium Ars Italica Osetra caviar is complimentary and around-the-clock, though the Dover sole paired with a label from the rare wine menu at La Dame would have you believing you were in Paris. And the signature Otium spa celebrates pampering as much as it does wellness—don’t skip on the oxygen-boosting Golden Radiance facial. You may find yourself at any given hour glimpsing ice walls through the Drake Passage and remembering that the best part about this ship is the awe-inspiring places it dares to take you. 10-day sailings from $13,150. —Janice Wald Henderson

paul gauguin cruise excursions

Scarlet Lady Arrow

Although new to the cruise industry, Virgin Voyages has already begun to set itself apart from its predecessors. When first stepping on the Scarlet Lady, cruisers are met with a rousing, upbeat staff that serve as gurus around the ship and are experts on everything from beauty to juicing. While the Scarlet Lady takes you on a familiar route around the Caribbean, the on-shore excursions available are what make this sail memorable. Take a leap of faith on daring outings such as the Waterfalls of Damajagua in Puerto Plata, where guests make their way down seven of the 27 natural slides and waterfalls. After the exhilarating experience, travelers can sit down with locals and come together over Dominican staples such as pollo guisado, tostones, and mangú. You can always get local delicacies while docked, but while onboard, you must snag a reservation at the Test Kitchen. It’s an experimental dining experience where the menu always evolves. You go in only seeing a small card with ingredients listed for the night’s meal, but everything else is up to the imagination. One might find cucumbers puréed and frozen into ice cream as dessert, or beets formed and prepared like steak. While en route to the next port, the hard reset one does at the Redemption Spa leaves your body feeling anew; it’s impossible to come back from vacation feeling the same as when you departed. On any Virgin Voyages ship, you’ll love the indulgent atmosphere, whether you’re catering to your sweet tooth by narrowing down your favorite gelato of the day, grabbing a drink at one of the five bars that stake claim to having the largest tequila supply on the seven seas, or finally getting that tattoo you’ve been thinking about for ages after visiting the ship’s tattoo parlor, Squid Ink. Seven-day sailings from $2,100 per person. —Paris Wilson

cruise ship restaurant

Queen Mary 2 Arrow

Six days sailing from England to New York across the vast Atlantic had the potential to bore me to stupefaction, but it turned out I had nothing to fear. “The ship is the destination,” said an entertainment director for Queen Mary 2 , who oversees a program that makes this cruise liner the undisputed hub of creative and intellectual stimulation on the high seas. Where else can you attend the annual Literature Festival At Sea, meeting top fiction and nonfiction authors like the late PJ O’Rourke, Bernadine Evaristo, and Louis de Bernières? And where else can you visit a planetarium, watch a Royal Shakespeare theater production, or hear guest speakers discuss artwork investments and the history of airport drug mules?

In between spa massages and table tennis rallies, I nourished my mind in the mahogany library before nourishing my body at the Princess Grill and Queens Grill restaurants, scarfing dishes like croquette of suckling pig, paired with excellent vintages and followed by mango panna cotta. On the final stretch of the journey, as dolphins leapt over the horizon and the Statue of Liberty loomed into view, my heart sank a little—New York City awaited, yet I didn’t want to disembark. That’s quite an achievement. Seven-day sailings from $1,389 per person. —Noo Saro-Wiwa

cruise cabin

World Navigator Arrow

During my first few hours aboard the Atlas Ocean Voyages World Navigator, I felt a bit like I had inadvertently crashed a family reunion: Seemingly everyone else aboard this Arctic expedition had just sailed to Antarctica on the Navigator six months before, so several crew members and guests spent much of embarkation day hugging and catching up. With a maximum occupancy of 196, it’s already an intimate ship, but the fact that the relatively young brand, which debuted in 2019, could develop such an impressive number of repeat travelers in such a short spell speaks volumes. Many told me they were drawn to Atlas because of its eco-friendly bona fides (the new-build ship makes use of hybrid engines from Rolls-Royce designed to leave minimal impact), but the creature comforts on board certainly help. While the star attraction of such an expedition voyage is what lies beyond the decks—access to remote Antarctic fjords that larger vessels can’t dream of traversing, or spotting polar bears loping along pearly glaciers in the Arctic—I made the most of my time in between Zodiac expeditions. The multi-jet shower in my stateroom was sublime after damp and rigorous treks, the heated massage beds in the only L’Occitane Spa at sea are a dream, and the Arctic summer’s 24 hours of sunshine made the Dome observation deck a prime perch to cozy up with a book at any time of day or night. There was neither internet nor cell phone connectivity during my entire eight-day journey sailing thanks to the remote latitudes (though Atlas guests now have access to full Starlink satellite coverage), which meant this was the longest I’d been offline since the 1990s—and yet somehow, drifting through the surreal landscape in this cosseting bubble, I didn’t miss scrolling or chatting with the outside world one bit. Seven-night sailings from $4,749 per person. —Sarah Khan

paul gauguin cruise excursions

Westerdam Arrow

A passenger who is well below senior age dances the robot to classic rock, to R&B, to country music, and to disco hits as talented singers and a live band perform most nights in the Rolling Stone Lounge, on Holland America Line’s Westerdam . His mechanical movements are a source of amusement and encouragement; if he can take over the dance floor, so can we with our own moves. The 1,916-passenger Westerdam is beloved as a traditional cruise ship, with its smaller-than-mega-ship size, deep blue hull, wraparound outdoor promenade deck, and details such as fresh flowers all around, celebrating the 150-year-old cruise line’s Dutch roots. Tradition does not mean staid. There’s rock and roll. There’s a trendy top-of-ship pickleball court.

On an Alaska cruise, my husband and I start our days with a jolt of caffeine via the baristas at Explorations Central, the ship’s cushy, contemporary, forward-facing observation lounge, before heading off on adventures such as joining other passengers in synchronized paddling a large canoe to see the ancient yet diminishing ice of Juneau’s Mendenhall Glacier. Back on the ship, we indulge in excellent burgers, topped with Gouda and applewood-smoked bacon and served in fast-food wrapping from a stand at the covered Lido pool. We enjoy sustainable Alaska seafood—grilled salmon, fennel-crusted halibut, fried cod—in between cocktails made with local gin, served on real glacial ice. From the veranda of our classic aft cabin, mesmerizing views of the ship’s wake, seemingly endless forest, and a distant, blue-tinged glacier clear our brain. We’re ready for more of the dancing man. Seven-day sailings from $379 per person. —Fran Golden

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Veranda

10 Luxury Cruise Lines That Will Make You Want to Ditch Plane Travel Forever

Posted: June 11, 2024 | Last updated: June 11, 2024

<p>Thinking about booking your next dream vacation? As stunning as land-locked adventures and <a href="https://www.veranda.com/travel/g45548087/most-beautiful-hotels-2023/">beautiful hotels</a> can be, there’s something to be said about sailing the seas. Fortunately for us, nowadays, there are cruise ships that far exceed the family-fun agenda of the classic companies so often advertised on TV. While there’s absolutely nothing wrong with those cruise liners, there’s something special about not only traversing the ocean but doing so decked out to the nines. With that in mind, we’ve rounded up the best luxury cruise lines of 2023. Ahead, uncover the company that best aligns with your idea of the ultimate water-bound getaway.</p>

Thinking about booking your next dream vacation? As stunning as land-locked adventures and beautiful hotels can be, there’s something to be said about sailing the seas. Fortunately for us, nowadays, there are cruise ships that far exceed the family-fun agenda of the classic companies so often advertised on TV. While there’s absolutely nothing wrong with those cruise liners, there’s something special about not only traversing the ocean but doing so decked out to the nines. With that in mind, we’ve rounded up the best luxury cruise lines of 2023. Ahead, uncover the company that best aligns with your idea of the ultimate water-bound getaway.

<p>Silversea is the “jewel in the crown” of the Royal Caribbean Group, not to mention the original luxury cruise line, first entering the space in 1994. The company touts 12 all-inclusive ships with destinations all over the world. Whether you want to explore the American West Coast, South America, Northern Europe and the British Isles, Africa, Asia, Australia and New Zealand, or even Antarctica, Silversea has a cruise to fit your fancy.</p><p>Speaking of fancy, the most luxurious cruise that Silversea offers is its 125-Day Chile to Norway sail, which rings up at $94,700. You don’t have to invest that much to enjoy a Silversea cruise, though. No matter which type of suite you book, you can expect butler service, optional 24/7 in-suite dining, endless access to premium beverages and craft cocktails, and complimentary caviar around the clock. </p><p><a class="body-btn-link" href="https://www.silversea.com/find-a-cruise.html">Explore Silversea Cruises</a></p>

Silversea is the “jewel in the crown” of the Royal Caribbean Group, not to mention the original luxury cruise line, first entering the space in 1994. The company touts 12 all-inclusive ships with destinations all over the world. Whether you want to explore the American West Coast, South America, Northern Europe and the British Isles, Africa, Asia, Australia and New Zealand, or even Antarctica, Silversea has a cruise to fit your fancy.

Speaking of fancy, the most luxurious cruise that Silversea offers is its 125-Day Chile to Norway sail, which rings up at $94,700. You don’t have to invest that much to enjoy a Silversea cruise, though. No matter which type of suite you book, you can expect butler service, optional 24/7 in-suite dining, endless access to premium beverages and craft cocktails, and complimentary caviar around the clock.

Explore Silversea Cruises

<p>Paul Gaugin stands out for its single-ship escapade into the luxury cruise space. With a variety of cruises that explore French Polynesia and the South Pacific, Paul Gauguin is a small-ship cruise line with 7-, 10-, 11-, and 14-night itineraries that focus on intimate experiences, delectable cuisine, stunning stateroom balcony views, butler service, and more. With a 1:1.5 crew-to-guest ratio, you can rest assured knowing that all of your needs will be met aboard the m/s Paul Gauguin.</p><p><a class="body-btn-link" href="https://www.pgcruises.com/cruises">Explore Paul Gauguin Cruises</a></p>

Paul Gauguin

Paul Gaugin stands out for its single-ship escapade into the luxury cruise space. With a variety of cruises that explore French Polynesia and the South Pacific, Paul Gauguin is a small-ship cruise line with 7-, 10-, 11-, and 14-night itineraries that focus on intimate experiences, delectable cuisine, stunning stateroom balcony views, butler service, and more. With a 1:1.5 crew-to-guest ratio, you can rest assured knowing that all of your needs will be met aboard the m/s Paul Gauguin.

Explore Paul Gauguin Cruises

<p>Scenic is unique in that it not only offers luxury ocean cruises but river cruises, too. The brand prides itself on operating and innovating with guest experience in mind. As such, all of its cruises have so much to offer voyagers, from extensive dining, leisure, and wellness options to striking design elements that will make you want to stay aboard for much longer than your itinerary.</p><p>Scenic Luxury Cruises & Tours has nine ships with oceanic destinations spanning from the Arctic and Europe to the Caribbean and Australia. Meanwhile, if you find yourself in France, you may want to check out Scenic’s beloved river cruises, in which you can tour the Seine in the utmost style. </p><p><a class="body-btn-link" href="https://www.scenicusa.com/ocean-cruises">Explore Scenic Luxury Cruises & Tours</a></p>

Scenic Luxury Cruises & Tours

Scenic is unique in that it not only offers luxury ocean cruises but river cruises, too. The brand prides itself on operating and innovating with guest experience in mind. As such, all of its cruises have so much to offer voyagers, from extensive dining, leisure, and wellness options to striking design elements that will make you want to stay aboard for much longer than your itinerary.

Scenic Luxury Cruises & Tours has nine ships with oceanic destinations spanning from the Arctic and Europe to the Caribbean and Australia. Meanwhile, if you find yourself in France, you may want to check out Scenic’s beloved river cruises, in which you can tour the Seine in the utmost style.

Explore Scenic Luxury Cruises & Tours

<p>Ponant has a fleet of 13 luxury cruise ships with destinations dotting the globe. The award-winning French cruise line is beloved for its tailor-made voyages, in which guests have access to myriad bespoke experiences both on and off board, from in-room dining to once-in-a-lifetime immersive excursions.</p><p>Since Ponant ships offer smaller capacity—more akin to a private yacht experience—they’re able to navigate private ports and preserved locations that large-scale cruise ships are unable to access. While aboard Ponant’s all-inclusive ships, you can anticipate exceptional French cuisine, delicious fine wines, complimentary Champagne and spirits, room service, and more.</p><p>Of course, if you need further inspiration to look into the cruise line, perhaps the fact that three-mast yacht, Le Ponant, is part of the Relais & Châteaux portfolio will do the trick.</p><p><a class="body-btn-link" href="https://us.ponant.com/">Explore Ponant Cruises</a></p>

Ponant has a fleet of 13 luxury cruise ships with destinations dotting the globe. The award-winning French cruise line is beloved for its tailor-made voyages, in which guests have access to myriad bespoke experiences both on and off board, from in-room dining to once-in-a-lifetime immersive excursions.

Since Ponant ships offer smaller capacity—more akin to a private yacht experience—they’re able to navigate private ports and preserved locations that large-scale cruise ships are unable to access. While aboard Ponant’s all-inclusive ships, you can anticipate exceptional French cuisine, delicious fine wines, complimentary Champagne and spirits, room service, and more.

Of course, if you need further inspiration to look into the cruise line, perhaps the fact that three-mast yacht, Le Ponant, is part of the Relais & Châteaux portfolio will do the trick.

Explore Ponant Cruises

<p>Crystal is renowned for its personalized voyages all over the world, not to mention its palatial suites that will leave you picking your jaw up off the floor. In addition to well-appointed design, the cruise line offers an impressive dining experience, with authentic cuisines from all over the world. So whether you’re in the mood for American, Italian, Peruvian, or Japanese food, you’ll have ample options to choose from.</p><p>It’s also worth mentioning that the luxury cruise line took it to the next level with its spa, Aurora Spa. The gorgeous, sea-view spa offers a variety of face, body, salon, and healing treatments, including massages, facials, acupuncture, Chinese herbal medicine, and even IV drip therapy—so you won’t have to worry about feeling hung over at sea (especially considering the cruise line offers complimentary Champagne, fine wines, and premium spirits). </p><p><a class="body-btn-link" href="https://www.crystalcruises.com/">Explore Crystal</a></p>

Crystal is renowned for its personalized voyages all over the world, not to mention its palatial suites that will leave you picking your jaw up off the floor. In addition to well-appointed design, the cruise line offers an impressive dining experience, with authentic cuisines from all over the world. So whether you’re in the mood for American, Italian, Peruvian, or Japanese food, you’ll have ample options to choose from.

It’s also worth mentioning that the luxury cruise line took it to the next level with its spa, Aurora Spa. The gorgeous, sea-view spa offers a variety of face, body, salon, and healing treatments, including massages, facials, acupuncture, Chinese herbal medicine, and even IV drip therapy—so you won’t have to worry about feeling hung over at sea (especially considering the cruise line offers complimentary Champagne, fine wines, and premium spirits).

Explore Crystal

<p>Windstar Cruises operates a six-ship fleet dedicated to extraordinary sailing experiences. With small ships that carry less than 350 passengers, Windstar prides itself on offering guests intimate, aesthetic, unforgettable voyages spanning from Asia and Australia to Italy and Iceland.</p><p>While the staterooms and suites are stunning and the shore excursions are aplenty, it’s the food that really stands out aboard Windstar. As the official cruise line of the James Beard Foundation, Windstar offers a number of themed culinary cruises with food and bev from some of the most notable chefs of today, including Maxime Bilet (The Cooking Lab) and Jose Mendin (Pubbelly Noodle Bar, Habitat, Baja Bao).</p><p><a class="body-btn-link" href="https://www.windstarcruises.com/">Explore Windstar Cruises</a></p>

Windstar Cruises

Windstar Cruises operates a six-ship fleet dedicated to extraordinary sailing experiences. With small ships that carry less than 350 passengers, Windstar prides itself on offering guests intimate, aesthetic, unforgettable voyages spanning from Asia and Australia to Italy and Iceland.

While the staterooms and suites are stunning and the shore excursions are aplenty, it’s the food that really stands out aboard Windstar. As the official cruise line of the James Beard Foundation, Windstar offers a number of themed culinary cruises with food and bev from some of the most notable chefs of today, including Maxime Bilet (The Cooking Lab) and Jose Mendin (Pubbelly Noodle Bar, Habitat, Baja Bao).

Explore Windstar Cruises

<p>The Ritz-Carlton is synonymous with luxury, so it’s no surprise that the company extended into oceanic adventures with a fleet of three superyachts. Where the Evrima was built in 2021, the Ilma and Luminara yachts are forthcoming in 2024 and 2025.</p><p>While classic cruise lines have a capacity in the thousands, often edging upward of 4,000, the Ritz-Carlton superyachts offer a more curated experience to 500 passengers or less. From the outside, the yachts are sleek and serene, fitting in beautifully with the sea. Within Evrima’s walls, though, moody modern interiors with magnificent ocean views await.</p><p>Guests can look forward to soaking tubs, expansive private balconies complete with sun beds and a whirlpool, walk-in wardrobes, and more. As far as destinations are concerned, The Ritz-Carlton Yacht Collection embarks on oceanic adventures in the Mediterranean and Caribbean.</p><p><a class="body-btn-link" href="https://www.ritzcarltonyachtcollection.com/">Explore The Ritz-Carlton Yacht Collection Cruises</a></p>

The Ritz-Carlton Yacht Collection

The Ritz-Carlton is synonymous with luxury, so it’s no surprise that the company extended into oceanic adventures with a fleet of three superyachts. Where the Evrima was built in 2021, the Ilma and Luminara yachts are forthcoming in 2024 and 2025.

While classic cruise lines have a capacity in the thousands, often edging upward of 4,000, the Ritz-Carlton superyachts offer a more curated experience to 500 passengers or less. From the outside, the yachts are sleek and serene, fitting in beautifully with the sea. Within Evrima’s walls, though, moody modern interiors with magnificent ocean views await.

Guests can look forward to soaking tubs, expansive private balconies complete with sun beds and a whirlpool, walk-in wardrobes, and more. As far as destinations are concerned, The Ritz-Carlton Yacht Collection embarks on oceanic adventures in the Mediterranean and Caribbean.

Explore The Ritz-Carlton Yacht Collection Cruises

<p>Seabourn is a luxury cruise line that speaks to our soul—and for more reasons than the simple fact that it touts a “Veranda Suite Upgrade.” The luxury cruise line sets sail in the Arctic, Canada and New England, the Amazon, Arabia, Africa, and India, and more. </p><p>Each of the fleet’s yachts, which carry between 458 and 600 guests, is outfitted with ocean-view suites only, so no matter what excursion you book, you can anticipate traveling in luxury style with a picturesque backdrop. You can also look forward to mouth-watering cuisine courtesy of renowned chef Thomas Keller. </p><p><a class="body-btn-link" href="https://www.seabourn.com/en/us/cruise-destinations">Explore Seabourn Cruises</a></p>

Seabourn is a luxury cruise line that speaks to our soul—and for more reasons than the simple fact that it touts a “Veranda Suite Upgrade.” The luxury cruise line sets sail in the Arctic, Canada and New England, the Amazon, Arabia, Africa, and India, and more.

Each of the fleet’s yachts, which carry between 458 and 600 guests, is outfitted with ocean-view suites only, so no matter what excursion you book, you can anticipate traveling in luxury style with a picturesque backdrop. You can also look forward to mouth-watering cuisine courtesy of renowned chef Thomas Keller.

Explore Seabourn Cruises

<p>Cunard is known for its iconic black funnels, yes, but more so for its unparalleled large-scale onboard experiences. Although each of the cruise line’s ships carries upwards of 1,500 passengers, the four-ship fleet is adored for its luxury itineraries, stylish design, tranquil spa offerings, delectable cuisine, and unmatched comfort at sea. </p><p>Truly, if your goal is to book an unforgettable, Instagram-worthy cruise, Cunard is the way to go. From the stunning suites (decked out in pops of rich color, sumptuous textiles, and spectacular lighting) to the picturesque destinations, Cunard has it all. </p><p><a class="body-btn-link" href="https://www.cunard.com/en-us">Explore Cunard Cruises</a></p>

Cunard is known for its iconic black funnels, yes, but more so for its unparalleled large-scale onboard experiences. Although each of the cruise line’s ships carries upwards of 1,500 passengers, the four-ship fleet is adored for its luxury itineraries, stylish design, tranquil spa offerings, delectable cuisine, and unmatched comfort at sea.

Truly, if your goal is to book an unforgettable, Instagram-worthy cruise, Cunard is the way to go. From the stunning suites (decked out in pops of rich color, sumptuous textiles, and spectacular lighting) to the picturesque destinations, Cunard has it all.

Explore Cunard Cruises

<p>If you want to get the most bang for your buck when booking a luxury cruise, Regent Seven Seas Cruises is a prime pick. The all-inclusive cruise line crafts a new definition of the category with complimentary roundtrip airfare, free unlimited shore excursions, include 2- to 3-night land programs, on-the-house bar and lounge experiences, and more.</p><p>The six-fleet cruise line is also known for its gorgeous interiors, complete with modern aesthetics, Art Deco embellishments, stunning chandeliers, and more. When traveling with Regent Seven Seas Cruises, guests can traverse the seven seas, with destinations in Africa and Arabia, Asia, Australia and New Zealand, the Caribbean and more. And if you don’t want to pick a single destination, there’s always the option to book a grand voyage or world cruise, which can last up to 168 days and cost upwards of $100,000.</p><p><a class="body-btn-link" href="https://www.rssc.com/">Explore Regent Seven Seas Cruises</a></p>

Regent Seven Seas Cruises

If you want to get the most bang for your buck when booking a luxury cruise, Regent Seven Seas Cruises is a prime pick. The all-inclusive cruise line crafts a new definition of the category with complimentary roundtrip airfare, free unlimited shore excursions, include 2- to 3-night land programs, on-the-house bar and lounge experiences, and more.

The six-fleet cruise line is also known for its gorgeous interiors, complete with modern aesthetics, Art Deco embellishments, stunning chandeliers, and more. When traveling with Regent Seven Seas Cruises, guests can traverse the seven seas, with destinations in Africa and Arabia, Asia, Australia and New Zealand, the Caribbean and more. And if you don’t want to pick a single destination, there’s always the option to book a grand voyage or world cruise, which can last up to 168 days and cost upwards of $100,000.

Explore Regent Seven Seas Cruises

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  • Seabourn Cruise Line

Moscow Day Trip

cruisewmn

By cruisewmn , August 2, 2011 in Seabourn Cruise Line

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Cool Cruiser

We're extremely interested in a cruise next summer on the Soujourn which stops in St. Petersburg for almost three days. Seabourn lists two different "day trips" to Moscow via high speed train. Having previously cruised to St. Petersburg, we really don't want to stay there for three days and a side trip to Moscow would be the highlight of the cruise. Has anyone taken this excursion?

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I have been to Moscow many times, but never as part of a cruise. Was recently on a Baltics cruise and spoke to people who had - it takes it out of them as it was a super long day. In fact they got home so late that third day they slept in and had "sea day" at port.

There is so much to see in Moscow, I it should be a land trip and there are many nice hotels on which you can stay. It is really a 3 day experience. Having said that, if there is not much else you want to see in St Petersburg, and you don't think you will get back to Russia by land, it is a very interesting city with much to do. You will skim the surface, but will enjoy. I would only do if you had limited or no plans in St Petersburg - especially the day after as you return very late at night.

If you do not go, there are many not so well known things to do in SP. The Russian Museum is fascinating for example as is Yuspov Palace. The military museums and sights are interesting as well.

Whatever you decide to do you will have a great time!

JaneBP

Here's a link to more discussions:

http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1391453&highlight=moscow

TLCOhio

Doing a "day-trip" from St. Petersburg to Moscow and back can work well. We did that trip in 2008 with Crystal. Having sailed in the Greek Islands in 2006 with Seabourn on our first cruise, I am sure that the quality would be similar with your cruise line. One change now would be the use of the high-speed train in place of flying back and forth as we did in 2008. Here are more details to consider:

Having three days in St. Petersburg allows enough time to do BOTH in seeing Moscow and going to other places near where your ship is docked. Only a few of the better lines, such as Seabourn and Crystal, have that type of schedule. We used in 2008 the main schedule airline, Rossiya Russian Airlines, for this trip. That line is now part of Aeroflot. The train trip takes long, but lessens some of the added time needed going out to the airport and the train gets you closer to the central part of Moscow.

I'll offer up some added background, along with various pro/con factors for your consideration. My wife thought it was lots of money, but she viewed it as very much worth it after completing the trip as a "once in a lifetime" experience.

CON FACTORS : It's a long day! Leave the ship about 8 am (greeted by a small welcoming band dockside); lots of driving and traffic; get back by return flight to the St. Petersburg airport around midnight and back to the ship a little before 1 am. The cost through Crystal Cruises was not cheap, but it does include everything, including all bus transfers, your jet air flights on regularly schedule commercial airlines, lunch on the bus, dinner in a nice/historic club/restaurant, admissions, etc., etc. Moscow is a super large city of about ten million people. There has been huge growth in the suburbs of this city during the past decades or so. Traffic and time from the airport to the main downtown takes about an hour. You can get a good feel as you travel into town through the coach windows about the “new Moscow” with its suburban growth, commerce, advertising, capitalism, etc.

PRO FACTORS : Moscow has its unique history, sights and sites, from Ivan the Terrible up through Lenin, Stalin and the new Russian leaders of today. After a long ride in from the airport on the outer edge of this large metro areas of 17.3 million (with 10.5 million in the city), we stopped at a new hotel for coffee/tea/break. Then, we rode the Moscow subway and saw a couple of their very unique and artistic stations. Stalin at the time called these stations “People’s Palaces”. This Moscow Metro was first opened in 1935 and now has 182 stations, 12 different lines,187 miles of routes and carries seven million passengers each weekday. It’s the world second busiest subway system. This subway ride offered a good sampling of real life for people who live and work in Moscow. We then saw more key places enroute, including the home of the Bolshoy Ballet, KGB Headquarters, various Stalin era buildings, etc. Then we went to the Kremlin with its 19 historic towers. WOW, we were really there!

Inside the Kremlin are three key “super stars”. First, was the State Armoury with its spectacular Faberge Eggs, plus so many carriages, crowns, gowns, jewels, etc. Second are the various historic Cathedrals within the Kremlin Walls, plus the Tower Bells, Icon art, etc. This includes the Cathedral of the Annunciation built in the 1480’s and having such spectacular wall murals and icons. Third, was the Great Kremlin Palace with its spectacular reception halls, inlaid wood floors, gold and more gold, fancy ceilings, etc. The Czars were crowned here, plus the current heads of the Russian government, etc. You might check whether your cruise trip will take you insider here. The size and scale of these areas are hard to describe in words, let alone reflect and capture the history that has happened in some of these rooms dating back to the late 1400’s. We have seen lots of great palaces all over Europe, but this is something above and beyond for the eyes, heart and brain.

Then, we saw more building inside the walls of the Kremlin. We went outside of the Kremlin Walls and walked next door to adjoining Red Square, seeing St. Basil’s and the re-done Gum Department Store. Red Square is so historic, especially having grown up seeing the military May Day parades there, visuals of Lenin’s Tomb, etc. Have the words “spectacular” and historic been used too much? Maybe, but it fits for many of these unique places. St. Basil’s was built 1555–1561 on the order of Ivan IV (the Terrible). It was the tallest building in Moscow until the completion of the Ivan the Great Bell Tower (266 feet tall) in 1600 inside the Kremlin Walls. To be able to “CONTRAST” and compare Moscow and St. Petersburg during these three short days adds to the benefits of seeing both of these great Russian capital cities. Each is a very different and special city.

We finished with dinner in the Central Writers’ Club, a one hundred years old mansion made into a restaurant with crystal chandeliers, rich wood panelling, fireplaces, and antique balustrades. Finally, we drove back to the airport, passing many of the new suburban commercial development with big box stores and luxury housing, etc.

Is one day too short and limited? YES! You can, however, do and see lots in only that one short day. You get a small sampling above. How often do you get to Russia? The Cold War might not come back in full force, but there are going to be increasing and revisited tensions in future years involving Russia and getting access there. The major cruise lines have done this tour many times and has its details down well and timing perfected. Let me know any questions, thoughts or reactions.

Here are a few picture highlights of what we saw in Moscow. Have more to share, if you would like added views for the great potentials there.

THANKS! Enjoy! Terry in Ohio

Just back from a June 7-19 Solstice cruise from Barcelona that had stops in Villefranche, ports near Pisa and Rome, Naples, Kotor, Venice and Dubrovnik . Enjoyed great weather and a wonderful trip. Dozens of wonderful visuals with key highlights, tips, comments, etc. These postings are now at 25,907 views for this live/blog re-cap on our first sailing with Celebrity and much on wonderful Barcelona. Check these postings and added info at:

http://www.boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1426474

For details and visuals, etc., from our July 1-16, 2010, Norway Coast/Fjords/Arctic Circle cruise experience from Copenhagen on the Silver Cloud, check out this posting. This posting is now at 47,775 views.

http://www.boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1227923

Appreciate those who have “tuned in” for these two posts. Don’t be shy and feel free to comment and/or ask any questions of interest.

Walking on the famed Red Square of Moscow:

This is the interior for Moscow's most historic church, Assumption Cathedral or the Cathedral of the Dormition, inside the Kremlin walls. It is the mother church of Muscovite Russia. The church stands on Cathedral Square and was built in 1475–1479 by the Italian architect Aristotele Fioravanti. It was erected on the spot of an older 14th century cathedral of the same name:

The famed KGB Headquarters in Moscow where many entered and did not exit (alive) during the 1950’s and 1960’s:

Kazan Cathedral sits on the northeast corner of Red Square in Moscow. The current building is a reconstruction of the original church which was destroyed at the direction of Joseph Stalin in 1936. The original church was erected as a shrine in the early 1630s to mark the city's liberation from the Polish aggressors. After the Soviet Union’s fall, this was the first church to be completely rebuilt. The cathedral's restoration (1990–1993) was based on the detailed measurements and photographs of the original church:

Here is a small sampling of the Kremlin Royal Treasures of the Czars: Eggs & Jewels:

St. Basil's sits on Red Square and dates back to its 1555-61 construction on the orders of Ivan the Terrible (Ivan IV). It commemorates the capture of Kazan and Astrakhan and marks the geometric center of the city. This location has been the hub of its growth for Moscow since the 14th century. It was the tallest building in Moscow until the completion of the Ivan the Great Bell Tower in 1600. This church was near destroyed in the 1930’s when Stalin was in control.:

We did it with Regent several years ago. We were also docked in St Petersburg for 3 days. We flew to Moscow though. Not sure how long the high speed train takes, but until you get to the airport, through security and your flight leaves it may be the same. It was a great day. I wouldn't have wanted to miss it. We got back about 11 and they had a special dinner waiting for those of us on this excursion. Really did get to see the highlights of Moscow as well as a fabulous lunch.

10,000+ Club

I did the day trip to Moscow several years ago with Seabourn. Normally, I would never undertake such a grueling day but it was my third time in St. Petersburg and I had seen everything I wanted so I thought why not? It turned out to be a highlight of the trip. Yes, it was a long day but who cares. The day is just as long if you stay on board. Seabourn handled the whole thing extremely well from the flights to the guides to the meals to the private sightseeing. We saw and experienced so much in that one day that I felt I had been there for two or three. Is it better to go and spend a few days? Of course! But if that is not an option and you're not sure if you'll ever get there on your own I think it's a great thing to do.

Everything I said though is only for those who have been to St. Petersburg before. If it's your first time you'll need every minute of those three days there to see even a fraction of what there is to see.

Thaks for all the great information. We will be on the Sojourn late next summer in the Baltic. We have been to St Petersburg and are thinking we might do this if offered. Sounds great, hope we get the chance!

I can't thank you all enough for your quick and in depth responses. As much as I would like to take an extended tour of Moscow/Russia someday, I've learned that you never know what the future holds and not to let a good opportuity pass you by. The overall positive reviews and amazing pictures have sold us. While I realize we might be exhausted from the long day, it sounds well worth it.

I can't thank you all enough for your quick and in depth responses. The overall positive reviews and amazing pictures have sold us. While I realize we might be exhausted from the long day, it sounds well worth it. THANK YOU!

Glad we have helped to "SELL YOU". You are summarizing and approaching things correctly. See "IT" while you can and are close. Here are a few more pictures to help you get ready for the amazing sights you will experience there in Moscow.

One of the Kremlin Wall Towers in Moscow:

The domes of the historic church inside the walls of the Kremlin:

Inside the newly, more westernized GUM Department Store:

One of the 1930’s style building built by Stalin in Moscow:

Kremlin Treasures: Crowns and other “tools” for the Czars:

Moscow’s subways are called the People’s Palace with its marble coverings and unique designs for each of the stations.:

  • 2 weeks later...

Like you, we did the Moscow trip after a couple of trips to St Petersburg. Wouldn't have missed it for the world- totally different feel from SP, or anywhere else in the world. For those of us who lived through the cold war, it brought to life the spy novels I have read all my life.

  • 1 year later...

Camlachiegirl

Could you please send more information on your Moscow trips - we would like to do a seperate trip to Moscow after the cruise. Any leads or information would be appreciated.

I have been to Moscow many times, but never as part of a cruise. Was recently on a Baltics cruise and spoke to people who had - it takes it out of them as it was a super long day. In fact they got home so late that third day they slept in and had "sea day" at port.   There is so much to see in Moscow, I it should be a land trip and there are many nice hotels on which you can stay. It is really a 3 day experience. Having said that, if there is not much else you want to see in St Petersburg, and you don't think you will get back to Russia by land, it is a very interesting city with much to do. You will skim the surface, but will enjoy. I would only do if you had limited or no plans in St Petersburg - especially the day after as you return very late at night.   If you do not go, there are many not so well known things to do in SP. The Russian Museum is fascinating for example as is Yuspov Palace. The military museums and sights are interesting as well.   Whatever you decide to do you will have a great time!

We were on the Sojourn July/August 2012. We did a private day trip to Moscow using SPB tours via high speed train on our 2nd day in ST P. They picked us up from the ship around 5:30 am and dropped us off at the rail station, and we met our tour guide and a driver for the two of us at the Moscow rail station. It took 4 hours each way for the train, but it went from city center to city center, and it seemed to go by relatively quickly. We had a great time in Moscow- seeing the highlights as described on the tour itinerary, and we could customize it. There seemed to be little English spoken in Moscow, people not as friendly as in St P, and the traffic was horrible. I was actually glad to get back to St P( at around midnight).

It was a busy day, but that didn't stop us from a full day of touring before and after the Moscow trip on private tours by SPB tours. It was quite expensive, but I'm glad we went- and I really have no desire to go back.

seabournaddict

Years ago we did a land tour of Russia, so got to spend about 5 days in both Moscow and St Petersburg. I actually like Moscow more than St Petersburg. We have also done a Baltic cruise on Seabourn, so have had another 3 days in St Petersburg, so NEXT time we will certainly do the day tour to Moscow. I would also prefer to do it the way they do now, by train, would have been dubious about a Russian "domestic" flight. ;)

Emperor Norton

Emperor Norton

I could've sworn I'd responded to this thread earlier:confused:

I'd take my chances on a domestic flight with their new fancy Boeing planes (or even an odd Ilyushin). The train was a less than stellar experience. Four hours each way in a straight backed non reclining seat. Some of them had another passenger about 24" in front of you, facing you - so no sticking your legs out. Further they didn't seem to believe in AC so the car just got hotter and hotter. Moscow itself was great, I found it particularly amusing that right across from Red Square they had a capitalist pig-dog mall filled with luxury American and European brands.

MichiganDavid

Following is a description and personal review of the Seabourn Cruise - St. Petersburg -shore excursion: “MOSCOW BY TRAIN & THE MYSTERIOUS KREMLIN”

On June 18, 2012 – my wife and I participated in the Seabourn Pride’s Moscow Excursion along with 12 other passengers and 2 guides. Most of us had room service breakfast at 4:30am, crossed the flooded river outside Russian Customs and met the bus @ 5:30am for a transfer to the St. Petersburg Train Station. The high speed train (mostly at 130-140 MPH) left the station at 6:30am and arrived in Moscow at 10:15am. The train ride was uneventful and a box snack was provided.

In Moscow, we were met by the local guide and a full size bus. We drove into and around central Moscow for about 30 min. – buildings and sights are interesting, but do not compare to the historical & decorative buildings of St. Petersburg. We then took a Metro (subway) ride in Moscow. The metro is interesting, but not as impressive as St. Petersburg’s. (You will notice that throughout this review, I state that St. Petersburg is better than Moscow, which is true of everything except for the Kremlin, which holds its own and should be the main purpose of this excursion.) (Seabourn states that the Kremlin is closed on Thursday – THEREFORE, DO NOT TAKE THIS TOUR ON THURSDAY.)

After driving around Moscow again to view several areas from the bus, we visited the Kremlin , which is a very large wall enclosed fortress with hundreds of buildings, churches, monuments, fortress walls with many towers/etc. After a long walk (many long walks to come) at an OLYMPIC SPEED PACE (You will walk fast to see everything in the allotted time). We started with the “Armory” museum which was very good and I do not normally like museums. There are rooms with royalty gowns, Czars’ crowns, royalty carriages, suits of amour and weapons, jewel covered bibles, Faberge Eggs, etc. – basically Royal Treasures. From here we walked to the “Churches Square” with It’s 17 churches. We entered the Annunciation Cathedral where most all the Czars were crowned. Outside - took pictures of the largest BELL in the world that has never been rung and the largest CANNON that has never been fired. Took pictures of government buildings and the President’s Palace.

At about 1:45pm, we walked back to the bus for a short ride to a very prestigious restaurant (and it was) for a four course late-lunch with an excellent French Bordeaux.

After lunch, we visited the very large Red Square @ 3:15pm for a tour of “St. Basil’s Cathedral” which was beautiful and very interesting with its many Onion Domes – but I liked St. Petersburg’s “Church on the Spilled Blood” better. We were able to see the front of the Lenin’s Tomb , but it was closed. At the other end of the Square was a beautiful museum and very nice smaller church where recorded services were being played.

We had 45 min. on our own to walk around the Square and after another long fast walk back to our bus, we proceeded to the train station for a 7:45pm departure back to St. Petersburg. A snack and drink was provided. Arriving in St. Petersburg at 11:30pm, with the sun just beginning to set (the mid-night sun), we proceeded to the ship – 18 hour tour/ 21 hour day.

Summary: Is the tour worth $1,000 per person – only if it is important to see Moscow once in your lifetime. See St. Petersburg first ; tour has extensive walking at a very fast pace; you will be going to Moscow to see the Kremlin which is historical and beautiful.

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  1. Shore Excursions in Tahiti & French Polynesia

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