Popular Short Break Cruises to Consider in 2016
How do you set off on a short break to explore a new city, without having to worry about food, transport or accommodation along the way? Embark on a mini cruise! Perfect for beginner cruisers, relaxing for seasoned travellers and easy for families, a short break cruise lets you do a little or a lot, over about one to five nights.
All our favourite cruise lines, such as Royal Caribbean and P&O Cruises, offer short breaks that are packed full of entertainment, spa treatments, restaurants, bars and more, as you sail to incredible cities.
Here’s a look at some of the best.
Bruges Mini Cruises
Bruges is a fairy tale town that’s the perfect size for a short break exploration. Imagine mysterious cobbled lanes, rows of colourful, quaint houses, market squares and photogenic canals. Take a horse-drawn carriage ride, dine in 17th century buildings and discover historic churches straight out of a medieval novel.
Choose between mini cruises from 2 to 5 nights, on board exciting ships including Cunard’s Queen Victoria, P&O’s Ventura and Royal Caribbean’s Independence of the Seas, with year-round sailing dates and fantastic deals to be found!
Amsterdam Short Breaks
The ‘Venice of the North’ (as it’s affectionately known), Amsterdam seduces tourists with enchanting canals, quaint bridges, historic architecture and the infamous Red Light District. The bustling centre bursts with attractions, including the Anne Frank House, the Van Gogh Museum, Vondelpark and cutting-edge art galleries.
Jump on board P&O’s Ventura ship from Southampton to get to the Netherland’s capital and enjoy premier dining, spas, sports courts, swimming pools and nightly entertainment. Or, try a P&O Ferries mini cruise, departing from Hull, for a casino and organised children’s activities.
Blending strong traditions with a cosmopolitan vibe and vibrant nightlife, cruising to Dublin is a popular choice for a short break that’s packed full of fun. The city is easy to explore on foot and when you’re not hanging out with the friendly locals at the pub, you can shop, museum hop, admire soaring cathedrals and dine at award-winning restaurants.
Departing from Liverpool, Fred Olsen’s Boudicca can whisk you away to Dublin for three nights. During the trip, you’ll enjoy swimming pools, delicious buffet meals, spa treatments, shopping, cabarets and theme nights.
St. Peter Port Trips
Sail into one of Europe’s prettiest harbour towns on your next getaway, to discover Guernsey. St. Peter Port offers a wealth of history to explore, including Hauteville House, the home of French writer, Victor Hugo. Wander around the Candie Gardens, explore Castle Cornet’s museums and delve into military history at La Vallette Underground Military Museum.
Experience the stunning starburst atrium on board P&O’s Britannia on a two night cruise, or head off for three nights on the Emerald Princess from Southampton, for sparkling entertainment and relaxing leisure facilities.
Paris Mini Breaks
When you’re looking for a romantic short break, the City of Light serves it up on a glittering platter. Stroll along the river Seine, get your happy snaps of the Eiffel Tower, marvel at the Arc de Triomphe, discover Notre-Dame and dine at Michelin-starred restaurants before delving into the glamour of the Moulin Rouge.
Visit Bruges and Paris on a four night trip aboard Royal Caribbean’s Independence of the Seas, for a taste of incredible facilities, including a surf simulator, a rock climbing wall, an ice-skating rink and mini-golf.
Lisbon Mini Cruise Adventures
A Lisbon adventure means sweeping views of colourful architecture, Roman and Moorish ruins, majestic plazas and people-watching in Bohemian cafes. Find quirky gifts while shopping in cobbled laneways, spend some time on the beach or explore white-domed cathedrals.
To get there in style, take a three night taster cruise on board Fred Olsen’s Braemar ship, for sumptuous dining, including afternoon teas, a spa, a fitness centre, a library, a card room, swimming pools and nightly entertainment.