This Week in Cruise: More Nile Sailings, Ocean Explorer Returns

Egypt’s Nile River is gaining more river cruise capacity, as Viking said its 2024 season on the Nile is nearly sold out and unveiled more Nile sailings through 2026. Set to debut in 2025, Viking Sobek will join the company’s fleet as its sixth river vessel sailing the line’s 12-day “Pharaohs & Pyramids” itinerary. Those voyages plus other 2026 departure dates across the entire Nile River fleet have opened earlier than expected, given strong consumer demand.

Ocean Explorer, an expedition cruise ship that Aurora Expeditions chartered in the Arctic region, is now sailing once again after running aground in Northeast Greenland National Park earlier last week week. No one aboard was injured. In a press release, SunStone, the ship’s Miami-based owner, said that an underwater inspection will be conducted in Iceland to assess any potential damages sustained from the grounding. The release also said, “Passengers will be able to spend some days in Iceland before being flown back home. During the stay in Iceland, Aurora Expeditions will offer different sightseeing arrangements.”

Royal Caribbean International revealed a “first look” at what guests can expect at Hideaway Beach, a new area of Perfect Day at CocoCay, the line’s private Bahamian island experience.

As Hurricane Lee churned northward in the Atlantic Ocean last week, multiple cruise lines adjusted itineraries for some Caribbean, Bermuda and New England/Canada voyages. Among the lines making shifts were Royal Caribbean International, Norwegian Cruise Line, Princess Cruises, Oceania Cruises and Regent Seven Seas Cruises. The storm is now in the North Atlantic heading in an easterly direction.

More Cruise Developments

Oceania Allura's Vista Pool Deck
The Vista Pool Deck aboard Allura, debuting in 2025. (Photo by Oceania)

Oceania Cruises unveiled its inaugural season sailings for the new 1,200-passenger AlluraDebuting in summer 2025, the ship will operate 26 inaugural season sailings encompassing more than 92 destinations on seven- to 34-day voyages. 

Silversea Cruises has opened a pre-sale period for 206 new voyages in summer 2025Scenic will visit the Kimberley Coast of Australia on Scenic Eclipse II in 2024 and 2025.

Sister publication Luxury Travel Advisor published a photo tour and article about Seabourn Venture. It looks at the Seabourn vessel's Arctic expedition product in Greenland/Iceland. Look for more this week about the ship’s public spaces, dining and accommodations.

UnCruise Adventures is offering small-ship savings, while at the same time contributing to Maui’s recovery

Trade Sales News

Susan Shultz-Gelino
Cruise industry veteran Susan Shultz-Gelino has retired. (Photo by American Cruise Lines)

Cruise industry veteran Susan Shultz-Gelino, vice president of trade relations, American Cruise Lines, has retired after several decades with the company. She established and led the sales department through its early years, built industry-wide trade partnerships and developed an expanding team of business development managers. 

In terms of trade support, Atlas Ocean Voyages announced that it had expanded its North American sales team, while Cunard Line North America also unveiled a new structure for its sales teams.

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