In winter, the Australian cruise scene quiets down a little, and only those vessels based in Australia year-round remain to take passengers away from the cold and into the tropics. What's a lover of cruises to do?
Nearby Southeast Asia is a great destination for those who want a little more variety in their winter cruise options. Hubs like Singapore are easy to travel to with so many flights coming in and out, have wonderful cruise terminal facilities and are in prime position for some great cruise ports. In 2017, Royal Caribbean is taking advantage of this and have announced their longest-ever Singapore season.
Royal fleet sailing from Singapore
From October to May next year, the line will have three of the Southern Hemisphere's biggest vessels based out of the busy Singapore Harbour. Over this period, cruisers can choose from a total of 55 cruises on the Ovation of the Seas, Mariner of the Seas and Voyager of the Seas.
The enormous and brand-new Ovation of the Seas was recently reviewed by some lucky Cruise Sale Finder team members, and will move to Singapore after an extended Australia season. Her Singapore adventures will include 3-12 night sailings to ports including Penang, Phuket and Bangkok, Tianjin (Beijing), Ho Chi Minh City, Hong Kong and Seoul.
The Mariner of the Seas is a common sight in Singapore, sailing from Asia year-round. In 2017, she will be joined by her two fleetmates and sail short cruises from 3-7 nights, primarily to Malaysia and Thailand for some beach resort fun. The ship also has some festive cruises over the holiday season for those who would like to visit Asia in December and January!
Aussie favourite Voyager of the Seas will move up to Singapore in April with a two-week repositioning cruise from Sydney. There, she is set to complete six different cruise itineraries which includes Malaysia and Thailand as well as a one-way voyage to Hong Kong, calling in to Vietnam along the way.
A fresh cruising ground for Aussie cruisers
Asia is an up-and-coming cruise destination, and it makes a fantastic alternative for old-hat passengers to cruises from Australia. What's more, Singapore is a major travel hub and you can fly there direct from just about any international airport around the country, so it's no huge travel hassle. Here are just a few of the amazing places you could visit on a cruise from Singapore:
- Penang in Malaysia features on many cruise itineraries, and is full of historic charm which includes both colonial culture and remnants of the great Asian kingdoms. It is also beautifully tropical, with palm-fringed beaches. Something for everyone!
- Langkawi is another beautiful Malaysian spot, a tropical paradise and island archipelago. Get away from the built-up areas to experience idyllic beach bliss. The islands are also duty free!
- Phuket is the popular image of Thailand: The lively town with great eateries, shopping and cultural delights, and the stunning province with white beaches and unique iconic rock formations.
- Ko Samui in Thailand is similar to Phuket in that picturesque, white-sand way. One of the country's original beach resorts, this island is a fantastic stop on any cruise.
- Ho Chi Minh City was formerly named (and is sometimes still called) Saigon, and is the largest city in Vietnam. Cruise visitors can enjoy historic temples and modern skyscrapers, and the buzzing energy of this wonderful and growing city.
- Hong Kong needs little introduction, famous as it is. The island city has an iconic skyline, myriad things to do and see and a busy cruise port of its own. Cruisers can spend a day at Disneyland, shop till they drop or visit the greenery and forests that are found just beyond the urban areas.
The above cruise ports are far from the only places you can visit on a cruise from Singapore. Long itineraries can take you all over the continent and even further afield, and near the beginning or end of the season you might enjoy a one-way cruise between Singapore and Sydney or another Australian port city with some exotic stopovers along the way.
Have you tried a cruise from this bustling city? We have an interview coming up with a couple who tried and loved it - we'd love to hear your thoughts in the comments below or on the Cruise Sale Finder facebook page!