For British travelers who don’t like flying or for holidaymakers who want to kick-start their holiday without the fuss and hassle of a flight, cruising from a UK departure point is an obvious choice. And it’s not as limiting as one might think either, as there are plenty of European destinations within easy cruising distance from Southampton.
For starters, cruises from Southampton can take in local destinations as part of a fun-filled mini cruise, like P&O Cruises‘ two-night jaunt to Zeebrugge in Belgium for a lovely day in the city of Bruges. This popular cruise line also operates slightly longer taster cruises of three nights or more, which take in additional locations such as St Peter Port in Guernsey or Amsterdam in the Netherlands.
[Also see our travel article “Top Ten Mediterranean Cruise Destinations“]
Bruges is an ideal destination for visitors traveling with a cruise, as it offers just about everything a holidaymaker could want in a destination. Its picturesque lanes wind along the canals and amidst the medieval architecture of the city center, which has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2000. Churches and historic monuments abound and the city’s relaxed pace provides travelers plenty of opportunity to take in the beauty from a café patio or canal-side bench.
Itineraries of four or five nights from Southampton frequently take in two or three ports, such as Cunard‘s five-night tour of Hamburg in Germany and Le Havre in France, and may even offer a day trip to Paris. MSC Cruises also operates a four-night itinerary from the UK that travels to Ijmuiden in the Netherlands, Guernsey’s St Peter Port and Vigo in Spain.
Those looking to sail from Southampton and enjoy a week or more at sea will find a fantastic range of options available as well. Among them, Royal Caribbean International offers a seven-night cruise visiting Alesund, Flaam and Stavanger in Norway. Travelers could even really push the boat out and visit destinations as far afield as the Big Apple. That’s right, travel to or from New York City, the city that never sleeps, in the lap of luxury with the likes of Cunard straight from Southampton. Travelers will need to return home via a flight, but spending a few days in the world’s most exciting city is a great way to top off a relaxing trans-Atlantic cruise experience.
A cruise from Southampton can take travelers on a voyage of discovery virtually anywhere they want to go. And thanks to additional day trips and organized excursions offered by the cruise lines, not even the sea is the limit!