Cruises are a brilliant way to taste a cocktail of destinations as you relax between ports, while a land tour will give you an in-depth experience of a country or region. Now that we can set sail again, both are on the cards, so which should you choose?
Thankfully there is a third option: a hybrid holiday, where there is no need to settle for one or the other. Choose a cruise and land tour and package them into one unforgettable trip for the best of both styles of holiday – variety and downtime, iconic sights and immersive travel.
Of course you could put together a big trip yourself, but by letting an expert do the hard work you’ll have every assurance your money is safe and get good value too. And there are some sensational trips available to book now for next year and 2023.
Take in the iconic sights of the Great Wall of China, the Terracotta Army and Mount Fuji all in one amazing exploration of the Far East
An Antarctica, Argentina and Brazil tour aboard luxury super-yacht Scenic Eclipse showcases the White Continent in extraordinary style, with a helicopter on board to take you swooping over dazzling icebergs and a submarine to take you to the ocean floor.
Before the 11-night cruise you’ll stay in the Argentine capital of Buenos Aires, and afterwards you’ll spend a few days on the Brazilian border at the thundering Iguazu Falls, taking a thrilling jet-boat ride right up close. The 22-day trip ends in the throbbing beachside city Rio de Janeiro where you’ll enjoy sunset drinks at the peak of Sugarloaf Mountain, with 360-degree views of the city and sea. The cost is from £14,799pp, including flights, for departure on January 13, 2023 (scenic.co.uk).
Take in the iconic sights of the Great Wall of China, the Terracotta Army and Mount Fuji all in one amazing exploration of the Far East. This 20-night journey starts in Beijing for a tour of China, followed by three nights in shopping paradise Hong Kong before boarding Cunard’s grande dame, Queen Elizabeth, for costume balls and afternoon teas between ports of call in Manila, Taiwan and Japan’s subtropical island of Okinawa en route to Yokohama. You’ll stay in Tokyo for a couple of days, visiting soaring Mount Fuji and travelling on the legendary bullet train.
Prices for the tour, From The Forbidden City To Mount Fuji: China And Japan Explorer, are from £4,799 and include flights and a balcony cabin, with departure on April 1, 2023 (imaginecruising.co.uk).
Alternatively, how about spying the Big Five safari animals from a hot-air balloon in Africa and a voyage across the Indian Ocean, all in one holiday?
This magical trip and photographers’ heaven starts with a wildlife-packed safari across the Serengeti and in the Ngorongoro Crater in Tanzania.
See flamingoes while hopping around the West Indies with abercrombiekent.co.uk
In Dar Es Salaam you’ll join Golden Horizon, a brand-new cruise ship with acres of creamy-white sails that harness the winds to navigate to Zanzibar and through the Seychelles archipelago, calling at a handful of the most beautiful islands and dropping anchor for snorkelling, diving and watersports from the ship’s marina platform.
The 19-day holiday, starting on March 14, 2022, costs from £9,395pp, including flights, with an option to add a stay at the gorgeous Four Seasons Resort when the cruise ends in Mahe, the Seychelles’ main island (abercrombiekent.co.uk).
Maybe you prefer sensational sightseeing in the US cities of the East Coast and Deep South along with a colourful Caribbean cruise? From Washington DC you’ll start with a four-night escorted tour of Philadelphia and New York. Then, aboard sparkling new ship Enchanted Princess, watch the Statue of Liberty disappear over the horizon as you sail towards Puerto Rico for 13 nights of island-hopping around the West Indies.
Cruise.co.uk offers a 24-night holiday that takes in Philadelphia and New York
Ports of call include Saint Kitts, Saint Lucia, Bonaire and Curacao. And don’t be surprised if you see pink flamingoes strolling along the beach on Aruba.
Refreshed, you’ll disembark in Fort Lauderdale in Florida for a five-night tour from New Orleans to Memphis, with an evening of jazz on a Mississippi steamboat and a visit to Graceland, Elvis Presley’s extraordinary mansion, where you will stay in the Guest House on the estate.
This 24-night holiday departs on November 1, 2022, and costs from £3,799pp including flights (cruise.co.uk).
Sights to savour: Visit the Taj Mahal on a tour of India with uniworld.com
No photographs can prepare you for the beauty of the Taj Mahal, so you’ll be thankful that on this tour, India’s Golden Triangle And The Sacred Ganges, you’ll get to see this astonishing monument to love twice – at sunrise and sunset.
All your senses will be filled on your land tour, including a cycle rickshaw ride around Old Delhi, the bazaars of Jaipur and the vast, hill-top Amber Fort. So, a week’s cruise on luxury riverboat Ganges Voyager II, deep into rural West Bengal, makes a delightful contrast, before disembarking in Calcutta.
Prices for the 12-night holiday are from £5,399pp for departures in January 2023, including flights, with a free one-way business-class upgrade if booked before the end of this year (uniworld.com).