Category Archives: Cruise Destinations

Last Minute Caribbean Sailings — Escape the Cold!

If you’re starting to feel the chill of winter (and feeling some holiday stress), escape to warmer weather and blissful relaxation in the Caribbean. Last-minute Caribbean cruise deals are yours to grab right now. Choose a Caribbean itinerary that puts a focus on island time for some beach lounging and adventures to exhilarate you, or book an itinerary with lots of at-sea days so you can enjoy the salty sea air, panoramic water views, and relaxing time on the ship.

Here are some winter itineraries in 2018 to get you started on your search for the perfect last-minute Caribbean cruise.

Island Hopper Itineraries

Family Time on a Caribbean Beach
Family Time on a Caribbean Beach

Experience a wide range of the Caribbean with these itineraries that stop in a new port each day.

7-Night Southern Caribbean Cruise on Celebrity Summit – This cruise sails roundtrip out of San Juan, Puerto Rico, meaning you’re already right in the middle of the Caribbean when your cruise begins which gives you more time to visit ports. During your 7-night cruise you’ll visit five different islands in addition to Puerto Rico. These include Bridgetown, Barbados; Castries, St. Lucia; St. Johns, Antigua; Basseterre, St. Kitts and Nevis; and Charlotte Amalie, St. Thomas. You’ll also have one day at sea to relax by the pool or do your favorite on board activity before disembarking and catching your flight home.

7-Night Southern Caribbean Cruise on Celebrity Summit – This is another itinerary that sails out of San Juan, but differs in that it will end in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. It also has two sea days in the middle of your cruise and a variety of ports of call. You’ll visit St. Johns, Antigua; Basseterre, St. Kitts and Nevis; Charlotte Amalie; St. Thomas; and Nassau, Bahamas.

Ample Sea Days

Couple on balcony sailing onboard Celebrity Cruises

Want some extra time to spend on Celebrity Cruises’ luxurious ships? These itineraries have two or three days spent at sea so you can lounge by the pool, sip wine on your verandah, get a massage in the spa, and feast on delicacies in the onboard restaurants. Plus, there’s the Celebrity Life activities, shopping boutiques, evening shows, wine tasting events, educational lectures…and so much more!

7-Night Eastern Caribbean Cruise on Celebrity Equinox: You’ll depart from Miami, Florida on January 20 and visit San Juan, Puerto Rico; Charlotte Amalie, St. Thomas; and Basseterre, St. Kitts and Nevis. You’ll also have a sea day at the beginning of the cruise and two sea days at the end of your journey, giving you more time to take advantage of all the fun on the ship. There’s even a hot glass show on board!

10-Night Ultimate Caribbean Cruise on Celebrity Reflection: This Ultimate Caribbean itinerary that departs March 2 from Fort Lauderdale, Florida, lets you take advantage of traveling over two weekends and has four days at sea! In between the sea days, you’ll travel onboard the classy Celebrity Reflection to St. Johns, Antigua; Bridgetown, Barbados; Castries, St. Lucia; and Philipsburg, St. Maarten. You’ll even have an overnight in St. Maarten, giving you ample opportunity to explore both the Dutch and French (St. Martin) side of this special island.

14-Night Exotic Southern Caribbean on Celebrity Eclipse: If you’re looking for a longer cruise, check out one of the Exotic Southern Caribbean itineraries, like this one that departs February 18 from Miami, Florida, and travels all around the southern half of the Caribbean. The cruise visits Philipsburg, St. Maarten; St. Johns, Antigua; Castries, St. Lucia; Bridgetown, Barbados; Kralendijk, Bonaire; Willemstad, Curacao; and Oranjestad, Aruba. You’ll also have five days at sea.

Plus, here are a couple more last-minute Caribbean itineraries to check out:

7-Night Eastern Caribbean Cruise on Celebrity Silhouette departing February 11

7-Night Eastern Caribbean Cruise on Celebrity Summit departing February 17

Ready to book your cruise and sail away to tropical bliss? Visit www.CelebrityCruises.com or speak with your travel agent.

Cruise Port Spotlight: Naples, Italy

Things to Do in Naples During Your Cruise

Naples, Italy is a unique cruise port since Naples itself is a huge draw for visitors to Italy, but Naples is also the gateway to several other popular tourist spots in Italy. When visiting this city during a cruise, you have the option of sticking around Naples and exploring the city or taking an excursion to charming, colorful towns, historic sites, and more.

Cruising into Naples

Your ship will arrive in Naples’s cruise port via the Gulf of Naples. The port of Naples is within walking distance to shopping and dining in Naples. Meaning you can book a shore excursion and still probably have time (depending on the length of your excursion) to run into town for some of that famous pizza before getting back on your ship.

Things to Do While in Port in Naples

Pizza in Naples
Pizza in Naples

Historic Center of Naples

Besides eating pizza, there are plenty of other things to do in Naples.

You can explore the sights and sounds of the pretty Old Town area, where you’ll find gorgeous cathedrals, bustling squares, street vendor shopping, and a cosmopolitan vibe.

Pompeii and Mount Vesuvius

Pompeii and Mount Vesuvius

If you’d like a day experiencing ancient history while in port in Naples, head to the ruins of Pompeii.

Pompeii is one of the great historic finds of the world. It is an ancient city that was remarkably preserved after Mount Vesuvius erupted in 79 AD and buried the town in ash. Today, you can tour Pompeii and see buildings and bodies seemingly preserved in time.

The Celebrity Priority Access: Amalfi Coast Motor Launch and Pompeii shore excursion gets you there effortlessly from your cruise ship. You’ll enjoy views of the Amalfi Coast from the water on a comfortable motor launch. You’ll then depart the boat for some land time in Amalfi before heading to the ruins of Pompeii.

Amalfi Coast

Amalfi Coast

If colorful towns intrigue you more than historic ruins, you can also take a motor launch shore excursion down the Amalfi Coast to the town of Sorrento and explore its cliffside buildings and cobblestoned streets overlooking the Gulf of Naples.

Another memorable shore excursion you can do along the Amalfi Coast is the Sorrento Gastronomy Discover and Private Dinner shore excursion, which is a special Chef’s Market Discoveries excursion. You’ll visit local markets and private family farms with a Celebrity Cruises chef and learn about the history of food and drinks (like limoncello) in the area. Then you’ll get a delicious lunch showcasing some of the ingredients you learned about. After lunch you’ll take a coach drive along the Amalfi Coast and a stop in the charming town of Positano. This excursion also includes an experience back on board the ship; you’ll get to have dinner with the chef and dine on an exquisite Italian cuisine using ingredients your chef picked up during the excursion.

Capri and the Blue Grotto

Celebrity Cruises in Capri, Italy
Boat ride around the island of Capri

The Italian island of Capri is easily accessible by ferry from Naples. It takes less than an hour to get across the bay and you’ll be greeted by a cute little harbor village called Marina Grande. Though there are shops and cafes in the harbor village, the real allure of Capri is beyond the harbor.

The most famous thing to do in Capri is visit the Blue Grotto. The Blue Grotto is a small cave in the side of the island that is only accessible by a row boat. You’ll typically take a catamaran or other motor boat to the entrance of the cave and then take turns going in the row boat to explore inside the cave. Once inside you’ll be amazed by the way the light plays on the water, casting the cave in a bright blue glow. Visits to the Blue Grotto often usually include a boat ride around the island, which has gorgeous scenery. A shore excursion to the Blue Grotto will arrange all the details in getting you there, making it easy for you.

While in Capri, you can also take the funicular up the side of the hill from Marina Grande and you’ll arrive in Capri Town, where there are gardens, high-end luxury shopping, and incredible sea and island views.

Cruise Itineraries that Visit Naples

Excited to book a cruise that has a port of call in Naples? Celebrity Cruises has many Mediterranean cruise itineraries that make stops  in Naples. The cruises often include ports of call at other popular destinations like Santorini, Greece; Athens, Greece; Rome, Italy; Florence, Italy; and others. To find the itinerary that is perfect for you, visit www.CelebrityCruises.com or speak with your travel agent.

 

Celebrity Flora: An Innovative Cruise Ship Designed for the Galapagos

Explore the Galapagos Islands in Sustainable Style with Celebrity Cruises

Celebrity Cruises is continuing to make its mark on the world of cruise ship design and innovation with its newest ship: Celebrity Flora. Just like the highly publicized Celebrity Edge is poised to revolutionize cruising in the Caribbean and Mediterranean, Celebrity Flora will also be revolutionary as it is built with the destination in mind first. The Galapagos and its environment is influencing every decision for Celebrity Flora and this sustainable approach means a unique, immersive experience for cruise passengers.

Celebrity Flora Designed with Guests in Mind…

Passengers on board Celebrity Flora will find themselves immersed in the great outdoors of the Galapagos even while on the ship. The ship is designed to bring the outdoors in due to an outward facing layout that provides 360 degree views of the islands.

Celebrity Sky Suite
Celebrity Sky Suite

Celebrity Flora is also designed for luxury and will have passengers feeling like they’ve stepped onto a yacht. The small ship carries just 100 guests and all accommodations on board are suites. What comes with those suites? Modern luxury that includes:

  • Personal suite attendants to cater to every need.
  • Oversized bathrooms which offer plenty of room to relax after excursions and get ready for a gourmet dinner.
  • Infinite verandas that help bring the outside ambiance into your suite.
  • Sustainable, natural, and regionally inspired materials used in the suites.
Celebrity Flora Penthouse
Celebrity Flora Penthouse

Celebrity Flora’s uber-luxurious Penthouse suites will be the largest in the Galapagos and will feature separate indoor and outdoor living areas plus will even have an in-room telescope for stargazing at night and spotting animals during the day!

Seaside Restaurant
Seaside Restaurant

Guests will also feast on gourmet cuisine during the cruise. Three meals are served daily in the Seaside Restaurant. Al fresco dining and special in-suite dining experiences will also be available.

Celebrity Flora will have many other common areas to enhance your cruise vacation in the Galapagos.

Deck Bar
Deck Bar
Discovery Lounge
Discovery Lounge
The Vista
The Vista
Observatory
Observatory

Celebrity Flora Designed with the Galapagos in Mind…

Celebrity Flora will have many areas of the ship that are designed to help you learn and fully experience the Galapagos.

Celebrity Flora Marina
The Marina

The Marina is the part of the ship where guests have direct access to the islands as it’s typically where you’ll board and disembark. The Marina can even accommodate three Zodiacs, meaning you won’t have to wait long once the ship is stopped to board one and zip off to explore the flora and fauna around you.

You can also learn more about the Galapagos through educational opportunities on board. There will even be a Naturalist Center on Celebrity Flora where you can learn more about the destination. Presentations will also be conducted in the Discovery Lounge.

Guests who are into astronomy can stare at up at the night sky from the Stargazing Platform or participate in a guided astronomy tour during the sailing.

Celebrity Flora Designed with Sustainability in Mind…

Celebrity Flora is being designed specifically for the Galapagos and its fragile ecosystem. The ship will be built to be environmentally friendly as it journeys among the islands that make the Galapagos famous. Celebrity Cruises is achieving this in several ways.

Celebrity Flora is one of the most energy-efficient ships in its class and is designed to operate with a 15 percent reduction of fuel
consumption and equivalently fewer air emissions, which is achieved with an advanced propulsion system, hull configuration, and specially designed diesel engines.

The ship will also have an anchorless technology that will secure the ship’s position while leaving the sea floor intact.

Other environmental-friendly technology on board will be a system to convert sea water and air conditioning condensation into pure, fresh water.

Celebrity Flora will also have in-room water filtration to reduce plastic bottle waste. In addition, a strong emphasis will be put on reducing waste and recycling or reusing any material possible.

Celebrity Flora

Designed for YOU to Sail the Galapagos — Book Today!

Celebrity Flora will help revolutionize sustainable tourism in the Galapagos Islands while also providing guests with a luxurious, unforgettable vacation. If you want to be part of its early journeys, book your suite now by visiting www.CelebrityCruises.com or speaking to your travel agent. Celerity Flora is currently scheduled to embark on her maiden voyage on May 26, 2019, and will be sailing alternating 7-night Inner Loop and Outer Loop itineraries from Baltra.

How to Choose Which Celebrity Edge Cruise Itinerary to Book

Celebrity Edge is the newest ship from Celebrity Cruises and it is introducing many cruising firsts to the industry plus continuing Celebrity’s modern luxury ambiance on board. It also will be sailing a variety of itineraries both in the Caribbean and Europe when it debuts in 2018. Here are some tips to help you choose which itinerary to book – and how you can book more than one for the same vacation!

Western Caribbean vs. Eastern Caribbean

Family Time on a Caribbean Beach
Caribbean Beach

The first thing you’ll need to decide is if you want to visit the Western Caribbean or Eastern Caribbean. At first glance, you might think there isn’t much of a difference between the western and eastern sides of the Caribbean. However, there are some key differences.

Western Caribbean itineraries tend to visit ports with a wider variety of activities and scenery to do and see since they often include ports of call on both the coast of Mexico and Caribbean islands known for adventure.

Eastern Caribbean ports often include Caribbean islands known for beachside rest and relaxation and pretty port towns brimming with excellent shopping. Eastern Caribbean itineraries also sometimes depart from San Juan, Puerto Rico instead of Florida.

In the case of Celebrity Edge, both itineraries depart from Fort Lauderdale, Florida, but visit different ports. The western itinerary will visit Costa Maya, Mexico, which is accessible to nearby ruins; Cozumel, an island in Mexico famous for snorkeling and scuba diving; Key West, Florida, which is great for sailing excursions and golf; and Grand Cayman, popular for its Stingray City excursion.

The eastern itinerary will sail to San Juan, Puerto Rico, where you can tour old forts and then explore the sights and shops in Old Town; Tortola, British Virgin Islands, known for its beautiful bays and coves; and Philipsburg, St. Maarten, known for its duty free shopping (especially jewelry!), ziplining, and easily accessible beaches.

European Wonders

Oia, Santorini
Oia, Santorini

If you’re thinking beaches are great, but you were looking for a more cosmopolitan type vacation with a bunch of history thrown in, you’re in luck. Celebrity Edge will also be spending part of 2019 in Europe! From May through October, embark on one of Celebrity Edge’s intriguing European itineraries. These itineraries depart from Rome or Barcelona (and typically end in whichever one they’re not departing from). Celebrity Edge will be making ports of call at some of Europe’s most beloved cruise ports, some of which are Santorini, Greece; Athens, Greece; Naples, Italy; Monte Carlo, Monaco; and many more!

There is also one itinerary that leaves from Southampton, England, if you’d like to do a London getaway for a few days before you embark.

How to Decide on a Celebrity Edge Itinerary

Celebrity Edge's Pool Deck
Celebrity Edge’s Pool Deck

So with so many great itineraries, how do you choose? Well, let’s take a look at what you love about the west coast.

If you’re a west coaster who enjoys living in this region of the U.S. because of the beaches and laidback SoCal lifestyle, then an Eastern Caribbean cruise will be right up your alley.

If you love the mountain hikes, surfing, skiing, and other adventurous activities you can do on the West Coast, opt for a Western Caribbean cruise and partake in some exciting shore excursions.

Can’t decide? You’re in luck! Celebrity Edge’s sailings alternate between each itinerary so you can book back to back cruises and sail the western itinerary the first week, and the eastern itinerary the second week for an amazing 14-night vacation — or vice versa!

–> To view Celebrity Edge’s Caribbean sailings, click here. 

Those who are happiest when spending a night out on the town in one of the west coast’s famous cities like San Francisco, LA, or Seattle while still being close to the gorgeousness of the coast may prefer a European itinerary that visits some of the Mediterranean’s most famous cities and also calls at some islands.

–>Check out this itinerary that departs from Rome and ends in Barcelona, and visits the glitz and glam of Monaco and Cannes, the historical allure of Florence and Naples, and the beach fun of Mallorca.

Iconic Suite Veranda on Celebrity Edge
Iconic Suite Veranda on Celebrity Edge

Celebrity Edge’s first sailing is scheduled to depart December 16, 2018. For more reasons why you’ll want to sail on this luxurious and innovative ship, click here.

Cruise Port Spotlight: George Town, Grand Cayman

The Cayman Islands are known for their underwater activities, gorgeous beaches, upscale shopping, and ritzy resorts. George Town in Grand Cayman is a popular cruise port of call that has all this and more. Here’s what you need to know before visiting George Town with tips on things to do while there for the day.

Getting to George Town, Grand Cayman

Grand Cayman is the largest of the Cayman Islands and George Town is its capital. Your ship won’t dock right at the terminal; instead it will anchor a short distance from shore and you will be tendered to the port terminal via smaller boats. You will be provided information on the tendering process for George Town while on board your ship before arriving in port. There are three different terminals at George Town’s port and you’ll catch your tender boat back to the ship at the same terminal at which you’re dropped off.

From the terminal, it’s a short walk to the town center. You also may be meeting your shore excursion near the terminal so check the logistics for your excursion before disembarking.

Things to Do in Grand Cayman

A variety of activities and experiences await you in Grand Cayman. Here are some of the ways you can spend your day there.

Stingray City

If stingrays intrigue you then head to one of Grand Cayman’s most famous sites: Stingray City. Stingray City is located in a bay where hundreds of stingrays flock each day to feed. Tour boats dock in the bay and your guide will teach you the proper way to interact with the stingrays, then you’ll get to don some snorkeling equipment and hop in the water to swim and frolic with the stingrays and even feed them.

On the Stingray City and Barrier Reef Snorkel excursion you’ll also visit Coral Reef Gardens for a snorkeling adventure before heading to Stingray City. While snorkeling at the reef you’ll get the chance to see aquatic plants and an array of sea life, including a possible encounter with a moray eel.

Dive into the Depths of Grand Cayman

Scuba certified? Take your undersea adventures one step further with a scuba excursion in Grand Cayman. Participate in a two-tank dive excursion around a couple of Grand Cayman’s best dive spots where you’ll get the chance to descend into the depths up to 80 feet and enjoy visibility of up to 100 feet. You’ll have the chance to see coral, topical fish, eels, sea turtles, stingrays, and even reef sharks.

Turtles, Rum, and Stingrays

When Christopher Columbus first discovered the Cayman Islands, he called them “Las Tortugas” due to the plethora of sea turtles he found in the water around the islands. The name obviously didn’t stick around, but the turtles did! And you can see them on the Turtle, Stingray Land and Sea Adventure shore excursion. This tour visits a turtle farm where you’ll learn more about green sea turtles that call the island home. Then you’ll head to Tortuga Rum Cake Factory for a little baking lesson before finishing your day at Stingray City.

Beach Time on Grand Cayman

Just want to relax? Then head to Grand Cayman’s most famous beach: Seven Mile Beach. This gorgeous beach stretches down the island’s coast and provides a blissful sandy retreat. Rent a beach chair lounger for the day or spend some time at one of the beach bars while gazing at the aqua sea.

Explore George Town

If the cosmopolitan life is more your scene, stick close to port and explore the streets of George Town. The town is situated on the water’s edge and has colorful buildings filled with duty free shopping and restaurants.

Cruise to Grand Cayman

Ready to book your tropical cruise vacation with a port of call in George Town, Grand Cayman? Visit www.CelebrityCruises.com to find your dream Caribbean itinerary or speak with your travel agent.

When researching, don’t forget to look into the Celebrity Edge sailings that stop in George Town. Celebrity Edge is the newest cruise ship from Celebrity Cruises and is debuting at the end of 2018.

Celebrity Edge will sail two different 7-night itineraries from Fort Lauderdale, Florida, one of which includes a port of call in George Town. That itinerary is the Western Caribbean Itinerary and visits Key West, Florida; Costa Maya, Mexico; and Cozumel, Mexico, along with George Town. The other itinerary is for the Eastern Caribbean and sails to San Juan, Puerto Rico; Tortola, British Virgin Islands; and Philipsburg, St. Maarten. You can visit all ports of call and make your vacation a 14-night one by booking back-to-back sailings.

Click here to learn more about the Celebrity Edge and how its innovative, creative spaces will change the way people think about cruising.

 

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.

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.

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.

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.

Cruise Port of Call Spotlight: Sitka, Alaska

Things to Do in Sitka, Alaska During a Cruise

Sitka is a small port town located in southeast Alaska on an outer island just slightly southwest of Alaska’s capital city of Juneau. Sitka is known for its beauty – thick spruce forests line the perimeter of the coast and the water of the calm Sitka Sound glimmers under the vast Alaskan sky.

For animal lovers, Sitka is an especially exceptional port of call since it provides many opportunities to get up close to a variety of animals.

Sitka’s History

Sitka has an interesting historical aspect as well. It was controlled by Russia until the mid-1800s and you’ll see Russian influence in the architecture of the city center and through performances by local dancers and artists that pay homage to Russian culture. Long before Russia and America ever made its mark in Sitka, though, the land served as the home for the Tlingit clan. You can still find an incredible array of Tlingit culture in Sitka today, including hand-carved totem poles and traditional clan houses.

Top Sitka Things to Do: Easy to Do via Shore Excursions

Here are some ideas on what you can do during a day in port in Sitka with Celebrity Cruises.

Wilderness Sea Kayaking Adventure

This excursion gets you out onto the water in a thrilling way. You’ll start your day with a boat ride to a base camp and during the boat ride, you may even see whales and other sea creatures.

Once at the base camp, you’ll get situated in a two-person kayak and paddle off to explore a protected cove located near Sitka. Breathe in the fresh air and take in the scenery while you keep your eyes peeled for wildlife both under and above the sea.

Alaska Raptor Center and Cultural Discovery

See one of Alaska’s most coveted residents, the bald eagle, and learn about the cultural background of Sitka on this in-depth excursion.

You’ll first take a motor coach ride along a scenic roadway during which you can take in the rugged scenery before arriving at the Alaska Raptor Center, a sanctuary that is home to a number of bald eagles. You’ll tour the facility and learn about the rescue and rehabilitation side of the sanctuary, plus have time to tour the flight center and outside deck habitat area. After learning much more about these amazing birds, you’ll head onto the Sitka National Historical Park.

Sitka National Historical Park is on the land where the 1804 “Battle of Sitka” was fought between Russian settlers and the Tlingit clan. Today, you can see many historical and cultural sights in the park, including totem poles and carving rooms along with other cultural exhibits.

Next you’ll head to a folk dance and song performance before ending your day in downtown Sitka at St. Michael’s Cathedral, a Russian Orthodox church which is home to impressive Icon Artwork from the 16th century.

Sea Otters, Raptors, and Bears Oh My

This tour also takes you to the Alaska Raptor Center, but eagles aren’t the only native Alaska wildlife you’ll see during your day in Sitka if you opt for the Sea Otters, Raptors, and Bears Oh My shore excursion. You’ll also get the fun adventure of boarding a catamaran cruise and taking it around Sitka Sound, where you’ll likely see sea otters frolicking in the water. You also may see whales, seals, porpoises, and sea lions. During the cruise you’ll also learn about Alaska’s water ecosystem from a naturalist guide.

Back on land, you’ll be introduced to the Alaskan brown bear at the Fortress of the Bear rescue center. You’ll learn interesting facts about the Alaskan brown bear while viewing orphaned bears from the observation deck.

Sitka Salmon Sportfishing

Sitka Sound is home to a large number of salmon and sportfishing is a fun pastime to do while in port. You’ll take off in a sportfish cruiser to a prime fishing spot where you can try and reel in a fish. You can either catch and release the fish, or opt to have it professionally processed and shipped back to your home to enjoy eating after your trip.

To book your Alaska cruise to Sitka, visit www.CelebrityCruises.com or speak with your travel agent.