Category Archives: Oceania Cruises

2011 Best Cruise Lines

Each year we see picks for the best ships, best dining, best kids clubs, etc. with many industry guides and reviewers.  We have seen two of these picks so far this year – Cruise Critic and Conde Nast Traveler.  So how did your favorites do?

Cruise Critic Editors’ Picks 2011

  • Best New Ship – Disney Dream
  • Best New River Ship – Uniworld’s S.S. Antoinette
  • Best for Luxury –  Seabourn’s Odyssey
  • Best for First-Timers –  Princess Cruises
  • Best for Families – Royal Caribbean
  • Best Itineraries – Azamara Club Cruises
  • Best for Adventure – Lindblad Expeditions
  • Best River Cruise Line – Viking River Cruises
  • Best Value for Money – Carnival Cruise Lines
  • Best for Dining – Celebrity Cruises
  • Best Alternative Restaurant – Celebrity’s Qsine
  • Best Buffet – Norwegian Cruise Lines
  • Best for Entertainment – Royal Caribbean’s Oasis and Allure
  • Best for Healthy Cruising – Celebrity Cruises
  • Best for Spa Lovers – Seabourn’s Sojourn & Quest
  • Best for Solo Cruisers – Norwegian Epic
  • Best Suites – Oceania’s Marina
  • Best Standard Cabins – Disney Cruise Line
  • Best Inside Cabins – Disney Dream
  • Best Shore Excursions – Holland America
  • Best for Enrichment – Crystal Cruises
  • Best for Honeymoons – Princess Cruises
  • Best for Wine Lovers – Celebrity Solstice-Class
  • Best Cruise Ship Bar – Carnival’s RedFrog Pub
  • Best U.S. Cruise Port – New Orleans

Conde Nast Traveler – Gold List 2011

Rather than selecting one best in each of a number of categories, Conde Nast Traveler gives an overall score for each of their picks based on itineraries, cabins, service, food, design, activities and excursions.  The scores were averages to get the overall score.  Our list shows the cruise line name, overall score and top category.

  • Abercrombie & Kent – Overall Score 83.7 (Itineraries 96.0)
  • Crystal Cruises – Overall Score 92.3 (Service 95.5)
  • Cunard Line – Overall Score 86.4 (Itineraries 89.9)
  • Disney Cruise Line – Overall Score 90.3 (Service 96.1)
  • Grand Circle Small Ship Cruises – Overall Score 87.1 (Itineraries 94.7)
  • Oberoi – Overall Score 84.7 (Tie for Itineraries and Service 94.1)
  • Oceania Cruises – Overall Score 86.6 (Itineraries 94.9)
  • Regent Seven Seas Cruises – Overall Score 91.0 (Service 95.1)
  • Seadream Yacht Club – Overall Score 86.6 (Service 94.4)
  • Silversea Cruises – Overall Score 85.2 (Service 92.1)
  • Uniworld Boutique River Cruise Collection – Overall Score 83.8 (Itineraries 92.0)
  • Windstar Cruises – Overall Score 84.3 (Service 93.2)
  • Yachts of Seabourn – Overall Score 93.4 (Service 97.9)

Conde Nast Traveler: 2011 Readers’ Choice Awards

We think that this review is the best representation however as it is your choices for the best of the best.  Travel editors don’t always have the same opinions as those of us who travel for a vacation.  Those who voted assigned a rating of excellent, very good, good, fair and poor for a variety of criteria.  Each reviewer’s total score is calculated and then the average of all responses is calculated.

Small-Ship Lines

  • Seabourn – 91.8
  • Silversea – 88.5
  • Windstar 85.8
  • Seadream Yacht Club – 84.5
  • Lindblad Expeditions – 78.0

Medium-Ship Lines

  • Crystal Cruises – 93.0
  • Regent Seven Seas Cruises – 91.6
  • Disney – 89.8
  • Oceania Cruises – 86.0
  • Azamara Club Cruises – 84.7
  • Cunard – 84.2
  • Holland America – 81.5
  • Celebrity – 79.9
  • Princess – 79.8
  • Royal Caribbean – 76.3

Large-Ship Lines

  • Celebrity – 87.7
  • Princess – 80.9
  • Royal Caribbean – 78.9
  • Carnival – 70.9
  • Norwegian Cruise Line – 64.3

River Lines

  • Uniworld Boutique River Cruises – 90.3
  • Grand Circle Travel – 86.1
  • Viking River Cruises – 84.8
  • Avalon Waterways – 78.9
  • AmaWaterways – 68.5

Porthole Cruise Magazine 2011 Readers’ Choice Awards

  • Best Small Ship (under 500 passengers) – Seabourn Quest
  • Best Medium-Sized Ship (between 500-2000 passengers) – Nieuw Aterdam
  • Best Megaship (at least 2000 passengers) – Allure of the Seas
  • Best Tall Ship – Wind Surf
  • Best River Cruise – Viking River Cruises
  • Best Value-for-the-Money Line – Carnival Cruise Lines
  • Best Luxury Line – Seabourn Cruise Line
  • Most Family-Oriented Line – Disney Cruise Line
  • Best Expedition Cruise Line – Lindblad Expeditions
  • Most Romantic Cruise Line – Windstar Cruises
  • Best Eco-Friendly Cruise Line – Royal Caribbean International
  • Best Short-Duration Cruise – Norwegian Cruise Line
  • Best Shore Excursions – Holland America Line
  • Best One-Day Cruise – Discovery Cruise Line (no longer in operation)
  • Best Private Island – Half Moon Cay
  • Best Adventure Cruise Line – Royal Caribbean International
  • Best Onboard Activities – Royal Caribbean International
  • Best Onboard Educational Programs – Cunard Line
  • Best Main Dining Room Cuisine – Celebrity Cruises
  • Best Alternative Restaurants – Norwegian Cruise Line
  • Best Casinos – Norwegian Cruise Line
  • Best Computer Facilities – Holland America Line
  • Best Spa Facilities – Celebrity Cruises
  • Best Onboard Shopping – Princess Cruises
  • Best Medical Facilities – Holland America Line
  • Best Children’s Programs – Disney Cruise Line
  • Best Service – Silversea Cruises
  • Best Entertainment – Disney Cruise Line
  • Best Onboard International Experience – MSC Cruises
  • Best Theme Cruises – Carnival Cruise Lines
  • Best Adults-Only Onboard Options – Crystal Cruises
  • Best Website – Carnival Cruise Lines
  • Best Accommodations – Seabourn Cruise Line
  • Best Facilities for Physically Challenged Passengers – Holland America Line
  • Best Caribbean Itineraries – Carnival Cruise Lines
  • Best Canada/New England Itineraries – Holland America Line
  • Best Mexican Riviera Itineraries – Carnival Cruise Lines
  • Best Alaska Itineraries – Holland America Line
  • Best Central America Itineraries – Holland America Line
  • Best Hawaii Itineraries – Norwegian Cruise Line
  • Best South America Itineraries -Oceania Cruises
  • Best Mediterranean Itineraries -Costa Cruises
  • Best South Pacific Itineraries -Paul Gauguin Cruises
  • Best North Europe Itineraries – Princess Cruises
  • Best Trans-Atlantic Itineraries -Cunard Line
  • Best Asia/Pacific Itineraries – Regent Seven Seas Cruises
  • Best Africa/Middle East Itineraries -Costa Cruises
  • Best World Cruise Itineraries -Cunard Line
  • Best Bermuda Itineraries -Norwegian Cruise Line
  • Best Australia/New Zealand Itineraries -P&O Cruises

There are other awards out there and we chose to focus on just a few.  Keep in mind that these awards are all based on opinions of other cruisers or travel editors.  “Mileage may vary”.  There are so many cruise ships and cruise lines available though there is bound to be one that is just right for you.

What is your favorite cruise line? 

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National Cruise Vacation Week Kicks Off!

We are seeing many offers this week from October 17 to 23 in honor of CLIA’s promotion for National Cruise Vacation Week.  Here are just a few of the deals available.

AmaWaterways

Exclusive 2 for 1 pricing on select sailings.

Avalon Waterways

Save up to $2000 per couple on select 2012 Avon Waterways European River cruises!

Carnival Cruise Lines

Carnival is featuring Fun Select Rates and up to $150 in onboard credits per stateroom for all cruisers.  You will receive $25 per person (up to $50 per stateroom) for 3 & 4 day cruises, $50 per person (up to $100 per stateroom) for 5 day cruises, and $75 per person (up to $150 per stateroom) on cruises of 6 days or longer.

There is also a bonus onboard credit for Europe departures starting June 2012.  When you book a 12 day Europe cruise you will get up to $200 per stateroom for past guests (plus free upgrades) and up to $300 per stateroom for new Carnival cruisers.

Celebrity Cruises

Up to $400 per stateroom on all sailings 4 nights or longer between January 1, 2012 and April 30, 2013.

Crystal Cruises

Book by October 31 and receive 2-for-1 fares, up to $700 additional savings and much more!

Disney Cruise Line

Between October 17 and November 17, 2011, book a 4 or 5 night Bahamian cruise aboard the Disney Magic and receive  a $50 onboard credit per stateroom.

Holland America Line

Great pricing on select  sailings.

Norwegian Cruise Line

Cruise Like a Norwegian!  Reduced deposits, onboard credits on all three day or longer sailings in 2011 and 2012.

Oceania Cruises

2 for 1 cruise fares with free airfare plus up to $4000 bonus savings per stateroom on select sailings.

Paul Gauguin

Get up to a $100 onboard credit per person for every booking made by November 18, 2011.

Princess Cruises

PreSeason Sale from October 17 through October 23.  On Europe itineraries you can receive free balcony upgrades and up to $100 onboard credit per stateroom.  12 night sailings from as low as $2490 per person in a balcony!  On all cruises 7 days or longer, there are reduced deposits plus an onboard value booklet worth up to $325.

Royal Caribbean

For bookings departing  November 15, 2011 through January 31, 2012, you can get up to a $50 onboard credit.  There is also a offer for up to $200 onboard credit for new bookings made to Dubai, Australia and Europe with departures after November 15, 2011.

Seabourn

Save up to 50% or more to Europe, South and Central America, and Bali and the Indonesian Isles with this One Week Sale!  All-suite accommodations with ocean views, many with verandahs.  Open bars throughout the ship with fine wines at lunch and dinner.  All complementary dining venues!  Complimentary welcome champagne and in-suite bar stocked with your preferences.  Tipping is not required nor expected.  Fares start from $1,999 per person.  This is an all-inclusive opportunity not to pass up.

This is a sampling of some of the offers available during the National Cruise Vacation Week celebration.

Terms and conditional apply to all offers so contact us today for all details at Travel on a Dream.  Starting pricing examples are base cruise only.  Taxes and fees additional.

Where Do You Want to Cruise?

For those not familiar with cruising, you may think that cruises only go to the Caribbean or the Mexican Riviera.  Most probably realize that ships also go to Alaska and the Mediterranean.  But where else can you go on a cruise?  Just about anywhere!

The most popular cruising destinations are the Caribbean, Europe and Alaska.  But there are so many more places to cruise.  The Bahamas and Caribbean cover a wide area with the Bahamian islands down to Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands, to the Leeward Islands and Windward Islands and Netherlands Antilles to the east and South.  To the West there is Mexico, Honduras, Costa Rica, Belize, Cayman Islands, Jamaica and even the Panama Canal.  Caribbean Cruises operate year-round, but fewer companies offer these sailing in the summer months.  Panama Canal sailings can be a half transit (roundtrip sailing) or a full transit (repositioning sailing).

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