Where in the World Wednesday: October 25, 2017

Can you guess where in the world this destination is from the clues below?

Word Clue

Construction of this medieval town and castle began in the 13th-century, and is now a UNESCO World Heritage Site. There is a popular festival named after a flower that takes place in this town on the Summer Solstice each year as well as an international music festival in July and August. A popular place to eat dinner here is at one of the many restaurants located along the river and close to the city’s castle. The town is home to two landmarks visitors won’t want to miss: the Gothic Church and the Chateau Complex.

Picture Clue

Photo by Allie_Caulfield (via Flickr)

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Český Krumlov, Czech Republic

Český Krumlov (pronounced “chess-key crumb-lov”) is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Each June, over the Summer Solstice, the Five-Petal Rose Festival is held here in the downtown area, and if attending, it will feel like you’ve entered a medieval town complete with characters dressed up in traditional garb from the middle ages and activities such as jousting, fencing, and historical dance happening around you.

Can’t Miss Beaches in the U.S. and Europe

Do It Here…Do It There: Top Beaches on the USA’s West Coast…Top Beaches in Europe

The west coast of the United States has the enviable position of bordering the Pacific Ocean. For many residents of the west coast, a day at the beach is just part of life. Visitors also usually make a jaunt to the beach a priority. These beaches along the west coast of the USA inspire wanderlust and are worth a drive to get to for residents and visitors alike. In today’s article, we’ve listed a collection of the top beaches on the west coast, and then — since your wanderlust will probably continue – the best beaches to visit during a cruise to Europe.

10 Must-Visit Beaches on the West Coast, USA

Mission Beach: This popular beach in San Diego has a bustling boardwalk and is even located right next to an amusement park. Ride the iconic wooden rollercoaster and then spread your beach towel out on the soft sand while you eat some take-out from one of the nearby restaurants. Whether you then wait an hour to go swimming in those tumbling Pacific waves is up to you!

Windansea Beach: Popular with locals, but sometimes unknown to tourists, Windansea Beach is a hidden gem in La Jolla, the northern most community of San Diego. It’s accented by large, long rocks that provide little alcoves for families and beach goers wanting a bit more privacy. The rocky coastline also isn’t as familiar of a sight in southern California and makes for beautiful views as well. Windansea Beach is also just a short jaunt to cafes, shops, and restaurants in the Bird Rock neighborhood of La Jolla.

Laguna Beach
Laguna Beach

Laguna Beach: Immediately west of artsy and classy Laguna Beach Village is this beach, which has an open sandy area flanked by cliffs on both sides. Head down behind the cliffs for more private beach lounging spots or stay where the action is in the open area and try your hand at some beach volleyball. Public restrooms and showers are right onsite and you’re a quick walk to food and drinks.

Huntington State Beach: If dreaming of southern California beaches conjures up images of the infamous tv show, Baywatch, then Huntington Beach is where you want to head. A long stretch of soft, pristine sand flanked by blue lifeguard towers hosts a bevy of sunbathers in the summer months. The waves are also ideal for body surfers and boogie boarders with certain areas being popular surf spots.

Santa Monica Beach: Famous for its pier which has an amusement park and restaurants on it, Santa Monica Beach provides both entertainment and relaxation on the sandy shores stretching north and south from the pier. It’s also in walking distance of Santa Monica’s ritzy downtown area.

El Matador Beach: Malibu is worth the drive up the LA coastline as it’s about where California’s beach scenery changes from sandy and flat to wild and rugged. Malibu has several beaches that have impressive rock formations jutting out of the water, but El Matador stands out due to a massively wide rock with a series of tunnels going through its base.

Santa Barbara Beach: Both long and wide, the main beach of Santa Barbara is sandy and perfect for a stroll any time of the day. Santa Barbara is the jewel of California’s central coast. While ambling along the beach, look toward the water for dazzling ocean views, and then turn your head the other way to be impressed by the mountainous skyline framing this pretty beach city.

Cannon Beach: California is most famous for its beaches, but don’t discount its Pacific Northwest neighbors, Oregon and Washington, especially if you head to Cannon Beach in Oregon. Cannon Beach is known for Haystack Rock, a massive triangular shaped rock formation that looms within the ocean close to shore. The beach itself is sandy and long, providing you with ample angles to get the perfect shot of Haystack Rock. Cannon Beach is also close to the town of the same name, which is full of charming side streets and ritzy boutiques and restaurants.

Bandon Beach: Though not quite as famous as Cannon Beach, a road trip through Oregon should also include a stop in the town of Bandon Beach and to its Face Rock State Scenic Viewpoint, which includes a beach area you won’t want to miss. This beach is home to some cool rock formations; when the tide goes out you can explore around the rocks and also see if you can see the face within the rocks that gives this beach its name. The views surrounding Face Rock State Beach are also worth making it a priority to see, especially around sunset.

Shi Shi Beach: Continuing north into Washington, the hike to Shi Shi Beach is worth the exercise and will have your jaw drop due to both the powerful nature of the sea and the way the nearby Olympic forest (Shi Shi Beach is part of Olympic National Park) comes straight up to the shoreline. You can also get a permit to camp along Shi Shi Beach, making for an especially memorable beach going experience.

5 Must-Visit Beaches in Europe

Nice: The French Riviera is famous for its magnificent views of the Mediterranean and upscale beach vibe, and Nice encompasses all of that with its coastline. Nice also has a lovely, wide boardwalk that takes you alongside both the coastal views and Nice’s Old Town. The beaches of Nice are rocky so come prepared with beach shoes and to maybe pay for the day use to a beach chair.

Santorini Beach
Santorini’s Red Beach

Santorini Red Beach: Santorini’s volcanic past has created some visually striking beaches. While its several black beaches are neat to see, it’s Santorini’s Red Beach that usually strikes a lasting impression in visitor’s mind. You have to access the beach via a short trailhead that takes you over a pass from which you’ll see the cove of Red Beach stretching out magnificently below you. Make your way down the trail to the beach and sit on the red pebbly beach, created from lava rocks. Behind the beach, a red rock wall stretches into the sky, and lapping at the shores is the Mediterranean Sea in gorgeous turquoise and teal colors.

Mykonos Paradise Beach: The Greek island of Mykonos is home to many beaches, but Paradise Beach stands out thanks to its party vibe and cove-like nature ambiance. Plus, wade out into the warm, clear water and you’ll soon come to an underwater rock wall that just barely breaks the surface. It will make for some instagrammable “walking on water” pictures.

Costa del Sol, Spain: The coastal area west of Malaga, Spain stretches for miles with sandy beaches. Take your pick for one to relax at and soak up the Mediterranean sunshine and sea views. Bring a towel or find a beach lounge chair to rent for the day and then take breaks from the sand to wander into town for some seafood and sangria or a refreshing ice cream cone.

Playa Sa Caleta, Ibiza: The island of Ibiza, Spain is known for its party atmosphere, but if you want some tranquility while on the island head to Playa Sa Caleta. This sandy beach is tucked away behind some rocky cliffs and surrounded by green hills and teal water ideal for swimming and snorkeling.

Which beach do you want to head to first? Celebrity Cruises has itineraries that stop nearby all these destinations. Find your perfect itinerary at CelebrityCruises.com or speak with your travel agent.

Where in the World Wednesday: October 18, 2017

Can you guess where in the world this destination is from the clues below?

Colonized by the Dutch, more than 600 languages and dialects are spoken here. There are bone white sand beaches nestled between black sand beaches dotted with volcanic rock from the last eruption 50 years ago. Here you can try one of the most expensive cups of coffee in the world (USD $50 per cup) made from the excrement of a small nocturnal animal found in the jungle. Locals all have one of four first names; translated as “first born”, “second born”, “third born” and “fourth born”. And it doesn’t matter if the child is a boy or girl. Babies are carried everywhere during the first three months of life. Their feet are not allowed to touch the ground until they are three months old.

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Mengening Beach, Canggu, Denpasar, Bali, Indonesia

Bali is an island and Province of Indonesia located 8 degrees south of the equator, just 517 miles from Darwin, Australia and is surrounded by coral reefs. Celebrity Cruises visits Bali on several Indonesian and Southeast Asia itineraries.

Cruise to the Caribbean with West Coast Resident Rates

Special Pricing! Get Low Resident Rates for Oceanview Caribbean Cruises

Yes, you read that right. The Caribbean is open for business and you can get a great resident rate if you sail there this winter.

The recent devastation caused by Hurricane Irma and Hurricane Maria to the Caribbean may have travelers wondering if a cruise to the Caribbean is still possible this winter. What travelers may not be aware of is that the Caribbean is still 90% open to travelers — most islands in the Caribbean were unaffected or had only minimal damage from the hurricanes.

Celebrity Cruises is doing its part to help this region by providing aid to islands needing relief while also continuing to sail to the islands that are able to accommodate visitors since many residents of these islands depend on tourism to make a livelihood.

So where can you sail this winter to find some sunshine and sandy beaches?

Here are some choices:

7-Night Southern Caribbean Cruise: Enjoy Thanksgiving at sea on this cruise that departs San Juan, Puerto Rico on November 18, 2017. You’ll visit the U.S. Virgin Islands, Antigua, St. Lucia, Barbados, and Grenada before returning to San Juan.

7-Night Southern Caribbean Cruise: Relax after the Thanksgiving chaos on this roundtrip cruise that departs November 25, 2017, also from San Juan, Puerto Rico. You’ll stop at ports in Barbados, St. Lucia, Antigua, and St. Kitts and Nevis.

7-Night Eastern Caribbean Cruise: Sail away on the Celebrity Silhouette as it journeys roundtrip from Fort Lauderdale, Florida, and visits ports in Puerto Rico, and St. Kitts and Nevis, plus provides two blissful days at sea.

11-Night Dutch Antilles Caribbean Cruise: Experience the Dutch Antilles and beyond on this longer cruise vacation that sails from San Juan and visits the U.S. Virgin Islands, St. Kitts and Nevis, Antigua, Curacao, Bonaire, and an overnight stay in Aruba. This tropical cruise departs December 12, 2017.

7-Night Western Caribbean Cruise: Depart from Miami, Florida on December 16, 2017, and sail around the exciting islands of the Western Caribbean on board the Celebrity Equinox. Caribbean ports of call you’ll visit include Puerto Costa Maya and Cozumel in Mexico; George Town, Grand Cayman; and a stop in Key West, Florida, before returning to Miami.

10-Night Ultimate Caribbean Cruise: On this exotic cruise, you’ll spend two days sailing at sea and enjoying ocean views before visiting ports in Barbados, St. Lucia, St. Kitts and Nevis, and the U.S. Virgin Islands before enjoying another two relaxing days at sea on board the luxurious Celebrity Reflection. This sailing departs December 8, 2017, from Fort Lauderdale.

Special Resident Rates

As for that special deal mentioned at the top of this post, stay in an oceanview stateroom or higher category and take advantage of low resident rate pricing on the above sailings and other Caribbean itineraries. These special resident rates are only available for a limited time and are applicable for all west coast states.

To see all the itineraries available for these low resident rates and the special pricing, click here.

How You Can Help Islands Affected by the Hurricane

While the above mentioned islands and other Caribbean islands are ready to greet cruise passengers, there are parts of the Caribbean that are still recovering from the devastation of Hurricane Irma and Maria. Celebrity Cruises has a hurricane relief program that will match contributions up to one million dollars. To make a contribution and help the Caribbean islands affected by the hurricanes rebuild and recover, click here.

Where in the World Wednesday: October 11, 2017

Can you guess where in the world this destination is from the clues below?

Word Clue

This isolated capital city is the fourth most populous city in its country. Famous for a 19th century gold rush, this city averages just 31 degrees, but is one of the sunniest capital cities in the world. This city also ranks as one of the top cities in the world in terms of self-made millionaires per capital. There is a famous wine region less than three hours from this city.

Picture Clue

Photo by Alan Isherwood (via Flickr)

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Perth, Australia

Perth is the capital and largest city in Western Australia with a population of two million. Perth is actually closer to Bali, Indonesia, than it is to Sydney and is situated at 31° latitude. Celebrity Cruises sails from Fremantle, located a half hour from Perth.

Cruise Port of Call Spotlight: Malaga, Spain

Malaga isn’t as well known as some of Spain’s other hot spots, but you don’t want to overlook this cruise port located on Spain’s southern coast that is an ideal starting point for exploring the Andalusia region of Spain. Not only is the city of Malaga adjacent to the Costa del Sol stretch of coastline with its gorgeous beaches, but it is also in close proximity to some of Spain’s most desirable attractions.

The Port of Malaga

Before we get into all those sites, here’s what you need to know about arriving in port in Malaga.

The cruise port is modern and is less than two miles from the city center. Cruise ships anchor for the day on the Eastern dock. You can easily walk to the city center from the cruise port or take a shuttle that drops you off in Plaza de la Marina, a large and pretty square located in the city center. Another option is to sign up for a Malaga shore excursion through the cruise line, which takes some of the hassle out of your day.

What to During a Malaga Port of Call

If you’re in a beach mood, take a taxi or excursion if offered to one of Malaga’s sandy beaches. You can also walk along the main boulevard of Costa del Sol for some seafood and souvenir shopping.

If you’re curious about the actual city of Malaga, the Malaga City Tour shore excursion is a great way to spend your day. You’ll learn what makes this Phoenician founded city great. The origins of Malaga date back to the 8th century and during your tour of the city you’ll learn about its history and gothic and renaissance influences plus see its best sites, including the birthplace of Pablo Picasso.

If you’d rather explore one of Spain’s other iconic sites or charming villages, you’re still in an ideal port to do so. Two of the most popular excursions outside the city of Malaga are to Alhambra Palace or the village of Mijas.

Alhambra Palace is one of Spain’s most popular sites to visit for travelers and for good reason – the 14th century palace is a Moorish architecture marvel. Upon arriving at this UNESCO World Heritage Site you’ll first be awed by the cupolas and ornate décor on the outside of the palace buildings. Inside, you’ll be mesmerized by mosaics, latticework, wood-carved ceilings, and a variety of artwork. The gardens are also impressive to walk around and feature flowers and fountains amid a series of scenic pathways.

Visit Alhambra Palace on a shore excursion and get the added bonus of hearing about its history from a local guide.

Mijas is home to cobblestoned terraces and whitewashed buildings situated 1,280 feet above sea level. From Mijas you’ll be able to see panoramic views of the sea and surrounding countryside. On the Village of Mijas shore excursion you’ll be escorted through the village with a knowledgeable guide who will tell you the vast history of the village and escort you the best historic sites and viewpoints in the area.

Cruise Itineraries that Visit Malaga

Celebrity Cruises ship sailing a Mediterranean itinerary.

When looking for a Celebrity Cruises sailing that visits Malaga, look for Mediterranean itineraries that focus on the western side of the Mediterranean Sea. Some options coming up include:

Best of Western Mediterranean: An 11-night itinerary on board the Celebrity Reflection that sails roundtrip from Rome, Italy and visits Gibraltar, United Kingdom; Malaga, Spain; Cartagena, Spain; Ibiza, Spain; Barcelona, Spain (with an overnight there!); Nice, France; and Florence, Italy.

Western Mediterranean Cruise: A 12-night cruise that focuses on Spain, France, and Italy. The sailing departs from Barcelona, Spain and travels to Valencia, Spain; Alicante, Spain; Gibraltar, United Kingdom; Malaga, Spain; Provence, France; Nice, France; Florence, Italy; Rome, Italy; and Naples, Italy, before returning to Barcelona. There are also a couple of days at sea which give you an opportunity to relax and explore the gorgeous Celebrity Eclipse you’ll be sailing on.

To book your Mediterranean cruise that stops in Malaga, visit www.CelebrityCruises.com or speak with your travel agent.

Where in the World Wednesday: October 4, 2017

Can you guess where in the world this destination is from the clues below?

Picture Clue

Word Clue

Originally built as a Roman city founded in the 3rd century BC, this city shares its name with cities in the United States, Sweden and Panama. There are ten Statues of Liberty in this country, five of which are in this city. There are more than 6,100 streets here, the shortest measuring just 18 feet. 

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Paris, France

Paris is the capital and most populous city in France with a population of 2.3 million people.
A list of must-see sites in Paris include the Eiffel Tower, the Louvre, Notre Dame Cathedral, a cruise on the River Seine, Musee d’Orsay, Champs-Élysées, Arc de Triomphe, Paris Catacombs, and a day trip to Versailles.

What to Expect from a Galapagos Cruise: Tips and Itineraries

Travel to the Galapagos with Celebrity Cruises for Unforgettable Experiences

Traveling to the Galapagos is a bucket list item for many people. The Galapagos Islands are full of rugged beauty and wildlife both in and out of the sea. Located off the coast of Ecuador in the Pacific Ocean, the Galapagos Islands are accessible by boat and a cruise there is an amazing way to experience it.

Cruise to the Galapagos on Celebrity Xpedition

Because this region is so special, Celebrity Cruises even has a special fleet of ships for it that are small ships and built to be able to ideally navigate the volcanic archipelago where the Galapagos Islands are located.

What You’ll See During a Galapagos Cruise

Iguana in the Galapagos

The animals that live in the Galapagos have an enviable home since the way the archipelago and islands are situated means they’re protected from certain predators, giving them the freedom to frolic in the waves and on land. You’ll get the chance to snorkel with sea lions and sea turtles, smile at colorful birds (including the dancing blue-footed booby, marvel at large iguanas, and admire the Galapagos’ famous giant tortoises – and that’s just some of the animals you may see. Keep your eyes peeled for dolphins and whales, too.

Giant tortoises in the Galapagos, which you can see during a vacation with Celebrity Cruises

From a scenery perspective, you won’t be disappointed on a Galapagos cruise. The islands of the Galapagos are made up of mesmerizing black volcanic rock and vibrant fields of green. Combine that with the contrast of the deep blue-green ocean lapping at the shores of the islands and you’ll have plenty of photo ops to take your camera out for.

Galapagos Cruise Itineraries

When cruising to the Galapagos, you can choose an Outer Loop itinerary or a Southern Loop itinerary. Many of the ports of call are similar, but the Outer Loop will travel to the islands of Floreana and Espanola (which you may want to prioritize visiting if you want to see the Waved Albatross) while the Inner Loop skips those islands and visits Santiago Island (which is bypassed on the Outer Loop). There is also the Southern Loop itinerary that typically bypasses the northern part of Isabella Island and instead includes ports of call on San Cristobal island. The Northern Loops itineraries include a jaunt up to Darwin Bay.

All cruises depart straight from the Galapagos and Celebrity Cruises will help arrange your airfare from Quito, Ecuador to the embarkation port.

You can also turn your Galapagos cruise into a cruisetour package that visits Peru and Machu Picchu or Quito, Ecuador before or after your cruise.

What Your Onboard Experience Will Be Like During a Galapagos Cruise

Celebrity Cruises has three ships that sail the Galapagos: Celebrity Xpedition, Celebrity Xploration, and Celebrity Xperience.

Celebrity Xpedition

Celebrity Xpedition

The Celebrity Xpedition is the largest of the three ships and the original Celebrity Cruises Galapagos ship. Though it’s larger (carrying 100 passengers), Celebrity Xpedition is still a small ship experience so you won’t find dozens of restaurants and lounges on board like you may have come to expect from other cruises. Instead, you’ll find that the ship is tailored to be an accent to the destination and improve your experience in the Galapagos by providing an up-close, in-depth journey through the region. The common rooms and staterooms and suites are all luxuriously appointed and guests are provided with an all-inclusive vacation experience while on board.

For dining you’ll be served delicious cuisine in Darwin’s Restaurant each day where you can sit on your own or with new friends. The cuisine often includes local fruits and vegetables and freshly caught fish by Galapagos fishermen. You can also choose to dine in your room and take advantage of the room service or in-suite dining options.

When it’s time to relax you can head to the Discovery Lounge for good drinks and live music or the Panorama Deck for fresh air and gorgeous scenery. To really unwind head to the hot tub on the Sunset Deck or take advantage of the onboard massage service.

Celebrity Xperience

Celebrity Xperience Cruise Ship Sails to Galapagos

The Celebrity Xperience is a newly refurbished ship that has 24 double occupancy staterooms. Each stateroom is stylishly decorated and has ocean views. When you’re not relaxing in your stateroom you can mingle with other guests in the comfortable lounge bar or cozy library.

The dining room has laidback elegance and serves three buffet-style meals a day that include high-quality, sustainable seafood and other cuisine made with fresh, local ingredients. You can also partake in al fresco dining on deck for breakfast and lunch or on select nights for Dinner Under the Stars.

Celebrity Xploration

Celebrity Xploration ship provides trip to the Galapagos Islands in stylish comfort.

The Celebrity Xploration is the smallest of the three Celebrity ships that sail around the Galapagos. Holding just 16 guests, Celebrity Xploration provides an intimate journey to the sights of the Galapagos Islands. Each of the eight staterooms provide ocean views via a window or veranda and are luxuriously appointed.

Celebrity Xploration also features an inviting sun deck, relaxing lounge, al fresco dining for breakfast and lunch, and a sunny dining room that serves fresh ingredients that are locally sourced whenever possible.

One more neat thing about Celebrity Xploration: it was recently announced that Nathaly Albán was named captain of Celebrity Xploration, which continues Celebrity Cruises’ dedication to advancing the role of women in leadership. This will be the first time in cruise industry history that a female seafarer will navigate the archipelago of the Galapagos as captain.

Included on All Celebrity Cruises to the Galapagos

Galagos Excursion
Galagos Excursion

Galapagos cruises are all-inclusive with Celebrity Cruises. That means all meals, drinks, and gratuities are included in the price of your cruise plus two daily guided excursions and shore landings. You’ll also get complimentary Wifi service while on board. In addition, your adventures off the ship will be even easier to have thanks to free use of snorkeling equipment, wetsuits, walking sticks, and binoculars.

Those wanting to learn more about the incredible region you’re sailing around will love the fact that certified naturalists from the Galapagos National Park will be traveling with you on your cruise. You can listen to lectures given by them during your cruise or chat with them in the dining room or lounge.

Book Your Galapagos Cruise

Interested in booking a cruise to Galapagos? Plan ahead and don’t wait to reserve your spot. Galapagos cruises often sell out months, and even years, in advance. To book your Galapagos cruise, visit www.CelebrityCruises.com or speak with your travel agent.