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Cruises

Monday, March 02, 2020

Adventure Canada Releases 2021 Lineup

If you want to circumnavigate Newfoundland, like Amy did on one of her most memorable trips in 2018, this expedition cruise is one of many Arctic and Atlantic Canada itineraries Adventure Canada is now rolling out for 2021. The Newfoundland cruise is happening October 1-11, 2021, and if you book before October 31, 2020, you’ll receive a 15% discount. Other 2021 trips include Iceland to Greenland in the Wake of the Vikings July 13-24; High Arctic Explorer August 5-16; Into the Northwest Passage August 16-September 1; Out of the Northwest Passage September 1-17; and Greenland and Wild Labrador September 17-October 1. If you want to learn more about the Adventure Canada experience and to perhaps cruise with Amy in 2021, please contact her at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

I'm off to Austin and San Antonio this week for a wedding, back next Wednesday, March 11th. 

 

Posted by Steve Jermanok on 03/02/20 at 06:00 AM
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Monday, December 16, 2019

New Holland America Cruise from Boston to Greenland in 2021

Holland America just announced a new cruise departing from Boston to Greenland the summer of 2021. Three 17-day Greenland, Newfoundland & New England Discovery cruises aboard the Rotterdam will depart in July and August and sail roundtrip from Boston to the remote shoreline of Greenland and Newfoundland. Ports include Paamuit, Qaqortoq and Nanortalik, Greenland; St. John’s, Red Bay, St. Anthony and Corner Brook, Newfoundland; Halifax and Sydney, Nova Scotia; Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island; and Bar Harbor, Maine. If you book a suite on any of the 2021 Canada and New England itineraries by February 28, 2020, they’ll throw in free drinks, free dining package, and free gratuities. Please let ActiveTravels know and we’ll check availability and pricing. 

 

Posted by Steve Jermanok on 12/16/19 at 06:00 AM
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Wednesday, November 13, 2019

Africa Week—CroisiEurope Cruise in Botswana, Namibia, and Zimbabwe

Not surprisingly, Lisa met many travel advisors at the We Are Africa conference in Utah who specialize only in African travel. Several of those advisors mentioned to Lisa that the best trip they ever took in Africa was aboard a unique river cruise with the European river cruise company, CroisiEurope. You start in Jo’Burg before flying to Chobe National Park in Botswana, where you’ll board small boats to cruise the elephant-rich waters of the Chobe River. Then you’ll fly to Kariba in northern Zimbabwe and board the African Queen for a 3-day cruise across Lake Kariba to see the lions, giraffes, rhinos, and leopards of Matusadona National Park. The icing on the cake is one last flight to see Victoria Falls and cruise the Zambezi River to say hi to the hippos. Pricing of this 9-day itinerary starts at $6528 per person and includes all lodging, meals, and the Jo’Burg to Kasane, Botswana flight (gateway to Chobe National Park). Let ActiveTravels know your dates and we’ll check availability and pricing. We’ll also help with international flights and design an itinerary for Cape Town and Jo’Burg before or after your trip. 
 

Posted by Steve Jermanok on 11/13/19 at 06:00 AM
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Wednesday, May 08, 2019

Deal of the Week: Cruising French Polynesia with Paul Gauguin Cruises

French Polynesia will always hold a special place in my heart. It was here and other South Pacific locales like Fiji and the Cook Islands that I received my start in travel writing, penning stories for Rodale’s Scuba Diving and resort reviews for Bride’s Magazine. In 1994, Lisa and I went on a freighter cruise to the Marquesas Islands that still to this day is one of the highlights of my career in travel. But you don’t have to deliver food to the locals to savor French Polynesia. Go in style aboard the m/s Paul Gauguin, a luxury cruise ship that has been plying these waters for 20 years. Now through May 18, The Gauguin is offering a savings up to $3,650 per person on select voyages, including round-trip airfare from Los Angeles or San Francisco. It’s only a 7-hour flight from LA to Tahiti, a mere two hours past Hawaii. Then you arrive in dreamy French Polynesia, where the emerald green mountains rise from the aquamarine waters. I’ve been all over Hawaii and the South Pacific and these are my favorite islands in the world, half of them deserted motus, specks of land surrounded by pristine white sand that are ideal for snorkeling and then walking the lonesome beach. Summer is the ideal time to visit French Polynesia, without the threat of cyclone. So if you’re considering a river cruise in Europe this year, maybe you want to head to the South Pacific instead. For the same price, you can follow in Paul Gauguin’s footsteps. Let ActiveTravels know and we’ll check pricing and availability. 

 

Posted by Steve Jermanok on 05/08/19 at 06:00 AM
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Tuesday, April 30, 2019

Ritz Carlton Yachts to Debut February 2020

If you like the comfort and service of staying at one of the Ritz-Carlton properties around the world, you’ll want to know that the company is unveiling the first of three Ritz Carlton yachts next February in the Caribbean. Each yacht will feature 149 suites, each with its own private terrace, and all cruises will include shore excursions, food and wine. The Ritz-Carlton Yacht Collection shore excursions will have five distinct categories: Iconic Sights; Stirring the Senses; Cultural Connections; Active Explorations; and Epicurean Experiences. Itineraries will head to Barbados, Bequia, and Curacao in the winter months. Then on the finest Mediterranean ports come spring and summer, including Majorca, Monte Carlo, Venice, and the Greek Islands. Please contact ActiveTravels for availability, pricing, and shipboard credit for spa treatments we receive through Virtuoso

 

Posted by Steve Jermanok on 04/30/19 at 06:00 AM
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Thursday, January 17, 2019

Join Renowned Travel Writer Fran Golden on an Alaskan Cruise this June

Fran Golden, former travel editor of the Boston Herald and author of Frommer's EasyGuide to Alaskan Cruises and Ports of Call (2018), will be hosting a select group of passengers on an Alaskan cruise June 15-22, 2019. So far 20 people have signed up to join her, but there are still berths available if you're interested. You'll board Holland America's newly refurbished Eurodam (see the latest review in Travel & Leisure) in Seattle. Then make your way up the Pacific coast with stops in Juneau, Glacier Bay, Sitka, Ketchikan, and Victoria, before arriving back in Seattle. Fran will select her favorite shore excursions along the route and provide anecdotes from her other memorable cruises. For more information, please contact ActiveTravels

 

Posted by Steve Jermanok on 01/17/19 at 06:00 AM
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Wednesday, January 16, 2019

Top Dream Days of 2018, Visiting the Small Town of Francois, Newfoundland

Guest post and photo by Amy Perry Basseches

Now that I live in Toronto, it makes sense that one of my dream travel days of 2018 took place in Canada! I'm on a devoted quest to explore all 13 Canadian Provinces and Territories -- and, in October, Newfoundland's time had come. Aboard Adventure Canada's vessel Ocean Endeavour, we spent one special day visiting both La Poile Bay and Francois, along Newfoundland's southern coast. La Poile Bay is isolated, without any road connecting it to the rest of the province. After hiking high above the cove, and walking on a deserted beach, I joined others in the crazy activity of plunging into the freezing cold water.
 
Not far away is the former fishing center of Francois (pronounced fran-SWAY), surrounded by steep mountains. Residents travel on small concrete paths between their homes and various buildings in town. There are no roads, and Francois can only be accessed by boat and helicopter (and by snowmobile in the winter). Today, 89 people live in Francois. Here I kayaked peacefully around the cove, then watched divers traveling with the group go deep into Francois Bay and emerge again and again with some 300 scallop shells. These were then shucked and cooked and eaten by anyone lucky enough to get in line early. After filling our bellies, we went ashore and were hosted by the locals at a "Kitchen Party" in the Community Hall. Much music, dancing, drinking, mingling, and eating ensued -- all good-natured and fun -- especially the tunes of the renowned Alan Doyle, a Member of the Order of Canada ("for his contributions to the musical traditions of his home province of Newfoundland") who was traveling with us.
 
If you loved the Broadway show, Come From Away, treat yourself to the genuine Newfoundland. 
 

Posted by Steve Jermanok on 01/16/19 at 06:00 AM
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Monday, November 12, 2018

A Stop at Saint-Pierre with Adventure Canada

Guest Post and Photo by Amy Perry Basseches

Six thousand French citizens on an island 2,600 miles from the coast of France? And only 12 miles from the coast of Canada? Yes, that's right. I was recently in Saint-Pierre (often discussed with its less-populated neighbor, Miquelon), all that still belongs to France from "New France," the colonies in North America starting with Jacques Cartier in 1536. The French have retained Saint-Pierre and Miquelon, and associated fishing rights, since 1816. 

When travelling to Saint-Pierre, you'll go through customs (don't forget your passport), you'll use the Euro, and you'll experience French food, wine, and, of course, the language. It was a fun stop on my Adventure Canada expedition. I opted for a hike in the morning on the Anse à Henry trail, then a short bus tour to make sure I could see as much as possible. This put my time in the charming town center right around midday, exactly the time of day when all the shops close (between 12 and 2 pm). Les Delices de Josephine cafe opened for us and the quiche was great, which I washed down with one of the only products made in Saint Pierre and Miquelon, beer from the new micro-brewery Miqu'ale (Brasserie Artisanale de l'Anse). 

If I ever get there again, I'd make sure to walk around town more in the morning or late afternoon, exploring the windy roads and small shops, and then spend the time in between hiking or exploring the now uninhabited L'Île-aux-Marins, just a stone's throw from Saint-Pierre (several unique buildings still stand even though no one lives there year-round). Au revoir!
 

Posted by Steve Jermanok on 11/12/18 at 06:00 AM
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Tuesday, November 06, 2018

Highlights of My Trip to Newfoundland with Adventure Canada

Guest Post and Photos by Amy Perry Basseches

I'm almost done regaling you with tales from my 11 days with Adventure Canada, a trip I truly loved. I will never forget:
 
Jumping into freezing cold water in La Poile Bay, off the south coast of Newfoundland, after a day spent hiking high above the cove, and walking on a deserted beach there.
 
Tasting fresh partridgeberries and partridgeberry jam in the Community Hall in Elliston, on the east coast of Newfoundland, while studying the town's Dart League team standings (15% of the local population plays). 
 
Watching divers on board jump into Francois Bay (south coast) and emerge again and again with 300+ scallop shells, which were then shucked and cooked, and eaten by anyone lucky enough to get in line early. 
 
Sharing many a beer and song with Newfoundland natives Alan Doyle, Tony Oxford, Gerry Strong, Paul Dean, Jeff Anderson, Latonia Hartery, Barbara Doran, Steve Evans, Dennis Minty, and others, most notably in our Nautilus Lounge (and in some local cafes on shore as well).
 
Putting my feet up and reading a book, while sipping coffee on deck during the sunny mornings, before getting into a Zodiac for another expedition (kayaking, hiking, a small town, a UNESCO site, you name it).
 
Adventure Canada says their trips bring a destination to life. I can assure you that this was done in a top-notch way. Consider joining me aboard the same vessel, the comfortable Ocean Endeavour, for the "Heart of the Arctic" Expedition Cruise in the summer of 2020. We'll see the province of Nunavut, Baffin Island (Cape Dorset is very important to the Inuit art market), Nunavik (the Inuit homeland in Northern Quebec), Ungava Bay, and Greenland (including Nuuk, the capital). Let ActiveTravels know if you are interested. 
 
Steve's off to Kentucky to tour the Bourbon Trail with a friend, before visiting his daughter at Indiana University for another fun Dad's Sorority Weekend. We'll be back next Monday with my description of the French islands off on Newfoundland, Saint-Pierre and Miquelon. To all my American friends, please remember to vote today! 
 

Posted by Steve Jermanok on 11/06/18 at 06:00 AM
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Monday, November 05, 2018

A Pleasure to Meet Chief Mi’Sel Joe on the Way to Miawpukek

Guest Post and Photo by Amy Perry Basseches

Early on in the Adventure Canada circumnavigation of Newfoundland, I found myself sitting next to Chief Mi'Sel Joe, the Saquamaw and Administrative Chief of the Mi'kmaq Grand Council, First Nations community of Miawpukek (Conne River). In preparation for our visit to Miawpukek along the southern coast of Newfoundland, he was spending a few days on board, consistent with his public role in presenting a better understanding of the Mi'kmaq people.

Mi'Sel Joe was born in Miawpukek into a strong Mi'kmaq family; both his grandfather and uncle held the office of hereditary Saqamaw. Since 1973, he has been involved in First Nation Politics, first as a Councilor, and, after the death of his uncle, Chief William Joe, in 1982, he became Traditional Saqamaw and the Newfoundland District Chief for the Mi'kmaq Grand Council. Mi'Sel Joe is committed to preserving the language, culture and traditions of his people, and also to Miawpukek's economically self-sufficient mandate. Around 800 people live on the reserve, with over 2,000 people living away, and businesses (together with a commercial fishery) lead to zero unemployment. A brand-new school for grades K4-12 opened in September 2017.
 
Last year, Mi'Sel Joe was appointed a member of the Order of Canada "for his leadership in developing and enhancing the well-being and financial vitality of the Miawpukek First Nation." It was an honor to meet him, to visit Miawpukek, and to learn more about how this vibrant First Nations community can be a model. 
 

Posted by Steve Jermanok on 11/05/18 at 06:00 AM
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photo of Steve Jermanok
Longtime Boston Globe travel writer, Steve Jermanok, dishes out his favorite travel locales and provides topical travel information that comes across his desk.

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