If you are a cruise lover looking for something a bit different from the usual sun, sea and sand this December, it’s time to board a river cruise. Explore the exotics, see a familiar destination with new eyes from the water or embark on a cruise ship aimed at the young and fun.
“Voted the number one river cruise line in Travel and Leisure’s World’s Best Awards for 2018, Uniworld Boutique River Cruise Collection are not your typical sunny December cruises,” says Lieria Boshoff, Marketing Manager of Uniworld River Cruises, South Africa.
Here are Boshoff’s recommendations for destinations to cruise through this December.
The Ganges in India
Not a destination one would usually associate with cruising, exploring India from the sacred Ganges takes the level of adventure to new, exotic heights. October to March is the best time to visit as the weather is warm and dry. Glimpse the mysteries of this ancient land from the famous Golden Triangle of New Delhi, Jaipur and Agra to the “City of Joy,” Kolkata.
“With Uniworld’s save 20 percent offer on selected 2018 and 2019 cruises in India, Egypt, Vietnam & Cambodia, this is a truly immersive experience for the culturally curious and adventurous traveller,” says Boshoff. Just google a Uniworld ship, and you’ll see it certainly ups the glamour stakes too.
The Mekong in Southeast Asia
For those who have done the beaches of Thailand and are looking for a unique way of appreciating Southeast Asia, the floating markets, rice paddies and locals going about their day is best experienced from the water.
The Mekong Delta, winding its way through Vietnam and Cambodia in the south, is extraordinary. You would never guess it from the warm smiles of the locals, but you can’t travel these two countries without being mindful of their unique, complicated and painful pasts. Do your research to see how you can be a sustainable traveller.
“We are proud members of Pack for a Purpose,” says Teresa Richardson, Managing Director of The Travel Corporation South Africa, “a charity organisation that identifies material items needed in the community and asks visiting travellers to pack with these in mind. For example, on Uniworld’s Vietnam cruise, our passengers can bring school supplies that are given to the local English classes in Angkok Ban village, one of many villages along the Mekong,” she explains.
Snow in eastern Europe
Nobody does the festive season quite like Europe. The chilly weather (hopefully with a chance of snow), medieval cities twinkling with coloured lights and smell of roasting chestnuts will make you feel as if you’ve stepped into your favourite Christmas movie. And then there are the Christmas markets – pure magic.
“Eastern Europe offers value for money for South Africans,” says Boshoff. “Cruising on the Danube through Budapest and Bratislava, with a stop in Prague, gives you the same festive experience as a Rhine cruise for example, just for less. These countries are just as enchanting and have fewer tourists as a bonus.”
Young and fun U by Uniworld
Think river cruising is only for those older and wiser? Not so. U by Uniworld offers guests a fresh, new approach to river cruising. Catering specifically for younger cruisers, U by Uniworld offers the same authentic and personalised service that Uniworld is renowned for with extra fun and trendy elements (both onboard and onshore) for the young and young at heart.
Ready to set sail? Get booking; December’s not far away.