The Best of the Best Cruise Lines!

Nowadays, Cruise Lines are not the ones they used to be. Cruising has become a quality travel act. Even though we still see big Cruise Lines with high passenger capacities, smaller ships may sometimes offer much more to voyagers such as luxury, restaurants and sophisticated facilities!

This is the reason why this list includes some boutique fleets!

1. Oceania Cruises
Ships: Marina, Riviera (both 1,250 passengers), Regatta and Nautica (both 684 passengers)
Destinations: Worldwide, including the Mediterranean, Africa and Alaska
Highlights: Bon Appétit Culinary Center, hands-on program for budding artists in Artists Loft, and the Canyon Ranch SpaClub.

2. Butterfield & Robinson
Ships: Isabella II (37 passengers), Kaya Guneri V (12 passengers) and Nostra Vita (10 passengers)
Destinations: Asia-Pacific, Europe, Africa/Middle East, North America, Latin America
Highlights: Exclusivity, flexibility and local contacts to set up unique onshore events.

3. Crystal Cruises
Ships: Crystal Symphony (922 passengers) and Crystal Serenity (1,070 passengers)
Destinations: Worldwide, including the Panama Canal, New England and New Zealand
Highlights: Upscale urban décor, 360-degree wraparound teak decks and an onboard Creative Learning Institute with classes by Berlitz and the Society of Wine Educators.

4. Hebridean Island Cruises
Ships: Hebridean Princess (50 passengers)
Destinations: Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland, England, France and the Channel and Scilly Isles
Highlights: Sea view cabins, tartans, bagpipes, country house hospitality and clay pigeon shooting from the deck.

5. Lindblad Expeditions
Ships: Five National Geographic vessels plus the Sea Cloud (58 passengers), Lord of the Glens (48 passengers), Delfin II (28 passengers), Oceanic Discoverer (68 passengers) and Jahan (48 passengers)
Destinations: Nature-oriented destinations, including Antarctica, the Galapagos, Egypt and the Mekong River
Highlights: Remote destinations, conservation ethics, naturalist and historian guides and opportunities to snorkel with sea lions.

6. SeaDream Yacht Club
Ships: SeaDream I and SeaDream II (112 passengers each)
Destinations: Caribbean, Mediterranean, Costa Rica, Transatlantic and the Amazon
Highlights: Flexible itineraries, on board golf simulator, a luxury Thai spa and a fully stocked retractable water sports marina.

7. Silversea Cruises
Ships: Silver Cloud (296 passengers), Silver Wind (296 passengers), Silver Whisper (382 passengers), Silver Shadow (382 passengers), Silver Spirit (540 passengers) and Silver Explorer (132 passengers)
Destinations: Worldwide, including the Indian Ocean, Southeast Asia, New England, and Canada
Highlights: Personal butler service, an onboard golf program and enriching theme cruises with wine experts and authors.

8. Viking River Cruises
Ships: 35 river barges and ships (200 passenger average)
Destinations: Europe, Russia, Egypt, China and Southeast Asia
Highlights: River view cabins and cultural immersion experiences, such as lessons with a Tai Chi master on the Yangtze or dining at Germany's oldest restaurant on the Danube

9. Disney Cruise Line
Ships: Disney Magic (2,400 passengers), Disney Wonder (2,700 passengers), Disney Dream (4,000 passengers) and Disney Fantasy (4,000 passengers)
Destinations: Alaska, the Bahamas, the Caribbean, the Mexican Riviera, Canada and New England
Highlights: Broadway-style Disney musicals, character-themed pools, Oceaneer Clubs for kids and nightclubs (complete).

10. The Yachts of Seabourn
Ships: Seabourn Pride (208 passengers), Seabourn Spirit (208 passengers), Seabourn Legend (208 passengers), Seabourn Odyssey (450 passengers), Seabourn Sojourn (450 passengers) and Seabourn Quest (450 passengers)
Destinations: Worldwide, including New Zealand, Scandinavia, Dubai and round-the-world voyages
Highlights: All ocean-view suite accommodations, movies under the stars, caviar served in the surf and complimentary massage moments on deck

Source: www.gayot.com 

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