|Hebridean Princess// (c) 2011 Hebridean Island Cruises|
All Leisure Group PLC has announced new itineraries for the 2012 cruise season. Through its three subsidiaries, Swan Hellenic, Voyages of Discovery and Hebridean Island Cruises, the small ship luxury cruising company will offer new voyages through the Mediterranean, Baltic and Scottish Highlands. Special early booking fares are available from Swan Hellenic through July 29.
Guests can sail with Hebridean Island Cruises aboard the Hebridean Princess on 20 new itineraries in the Highlands and islands of Scotland and Ireland. The 2012 season will feature two new cruises departing from Cork, Ireland- South from Cork and Gaelic Explorer- as well as tours of Kelburn Castle, Loch a’ Choire and the privately-owned Isle of Eriska.
Other highlighted itineraries include the seven-night Hebridean Jewels, sailing in March 2012, where guests can experience the pleated columns of Kilt Rock and Glenborrodale Castle. In the Wake of Boswell and Johnson, departing in April 2012, is a seven-night journey that retraces the legendary tour of the two travelers, with featured guest speaker Professor Peter Martin, biographer of Boswell and Johnson. A Gastronomic Tour of Skye samples the best locally-sourced Scottish cuisine, including lunch at a Michelin-starred restaurant with a cooking demonstration hosted by food writer Lady Claire MacDonald, as well as lunch at The Three Chimneys, a converted 100-year-old crofter’s cottage located along the banks of Loch Dunvegan. This delicious five-night tour departs June 2012. The seven-night Away Westward, departing September 2012, visits the Callanish Stones, Scotland’s most famous prehistoric site.
|Minerva// (c) 2011 Swan Hellenic|
Guests can also visit the British Isles and Northern Europe aboard the Minerva, operated by Swan Hellenic. The Midsummer in Norway cruise, departing on June 20, 2012, allows guests to discover a brand-new port at Akrafjord, Norway. The French Accent cruise on July 5, 2012 brings guests to the Flanders Fields of WWI and the “Last Post” at Ypres.
The 15-day Treasures of the British Isles, departing June 6, 2012 brings voyagers to National Trust properties, including Wallington in Northumberland, Plas Newydd, the holiday home of Agatha Christie, Snowdonia National Park, the Giant’s Causeway and the Castle of Mey, previous residence of the Queen Mother. Hellenic Highlights, departing August 29, 2012 takes passengers to the Cycladic Islands, Ephesus, the Aghia Sophia in Istanbul and Agamemnon’s Hilltop Citadel, as well as other classical sights taking advantage of over 50 years of local knowledge within Greece and Turkey. The 15-day Black Sea Odyssey, departing September 12, 2012 visits the Sumela Monastery in Turkey, Livadia Palace in the Ukraine and St. Stephen’s Curch in Bulgaria. A Byzantine Legacy, which departs October 10, 2012, travels the spectacularly narrow Corinth Canal- a waterway so small many cruise lines aren’t even able to make the journey.
|Spitsbergen// Image (c) 2011 Voyages of Discovery|
Finally, the 650-guest Discovery, operated by Voyages of Discovery, will sail from Portsmouth and Harwich, England in May 2012 to visit spectacular new destinations in the British Isles, Northern Europe and the Baltic. The Spitsbergen and the North Cape cruise includes a three-day exploration of the untamed nature surrounding Spistbergen. A Nordic and White Sea Adventure takes travelers on a three-day journey through the remote Solovetsky Islands in Russia.
The Discovery will also sail the Baltic with three cruises in May 2012- Baltic Icons, Baltic Treasures and Timeless Baltic- that each offer three days in St. Petersburg with the option of either a full day tour to Moscow or an evening visit to the Hermitage. The 10-night Heritage of the British Isles in May 2012 visits Greenwich for Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth’s Diamond Jubilee celebrations and features shore excursion opportunities to exclusive National Trust properties. The eight-night D-Day, Normandy, Dunkirk and Beyond in June 2012 allows guests to relive history along the shores of the famous Normandy beaches. The 14-night Adriatic and Aegean Odyssey, departing in October 2012, sails to Venice, Itea in Greece and Montenegro’s beautiful Kotor Bay.
Both the Discovery and the Hebridean Princess feature new “Footloose” tours that pair unforgettable cruises with beautiful walking tours. The 13-night Nordic Natural Wonders tour in July 2012 aboard the Discovery features specialist hikes among the magnificent scenery of Akureyri and the fjord Eyjafjordur. Aboard the Hebridean Princess, tours such as Footloose in Ireland, Footloose through the Isles, Footloose on Skye and Footloose through the Celtic Fringe are each accompanied by three experience guides and feature the inspiring landscapes of Scotland and Ireland.
For more information on the Hebridean Princess, visit www.hebrideancruises.com
For more information on the Minerva, visit www.swanhellenic.us
For more information on the Discovery, visit www.voyagesofdiscovery.com