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Norwegian Cruise Line Takes Delivery of Norwegian Encore



Norwegian Cruise Line announced Wednesday the company had taken the delivery of its newest ship, dubbed the Norwegian Encore, in Bremerhaven, Germany.

The Norwegian Encore will now begin a month-long tour with preview events scheduled in Europe, New York and Miami, including the new vessel’s naming ceremony on November 21.

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Norwegian Cruise Line’s newest ship measures 1,100 feet long with a gross tonnage of almost 170,000 and a guest capacity of nearly 4,000 passengers. Norwegian Encore will depart from Bremerhaven on Halloween and debut in Southampton, England on November 2.

The ship boasts the largest race track in the industry, the new Onda by Scarpetta restaurant, an enhanced Galaxy Pavilion, open-air laser tag attractions and the at-sea debut of the Tony Award-winning Kinky Boots.

“Today we celebrate the delivery of our 17th ship and the close of our history-making Breakaway Plus class – a feat that was made possible through a special collaboration with our partners at Meyer Werft,” Norwegian CEO Andy Stuart said in a statement. “Our dedication to creating next-level offerings onboard, will allow us to continue to deliver meaningful experiences for our guests, when Norwegian Encore arrives home to Miami.”

Following the stop in England, Norwegian Encore will sail to the United States and arrive in New York on November 10 for a two-day preview. The vessel will then voyage to Miami for a series of events, concluding with the christening ceremony and celebration on November 21.

Grammy Award-winning singer Kelly Clarkson has been named Norwegian Encore’s godmother.

Norwegian Encore will offer seven-day voyages to the Eastern Caribbean from Miami beginning November 24; Bermuda, and Canada and New England itineraries from New York City beginning April 22, 2020; and voyages to the Western Caribbean from Miami beginning December 12, 2020.

In the spring of 2021, the vessel will make her West Coast debut and sail to Alaska from Seattle.

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European Waterways Barge Cruises Are Ideal for Family Vacations



European Waterways offers the perfect solution to socially distant family travel in Europe.

As the coronavirus pandemic begins to wane and countries begin to reopen their borders to international travelers, families are expected to look to travel to reconnect with one another, and European Waterways is ready for the surge, offering the ideal opportunity for families to explore on private, chartered river barges.

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Derek Banks, managing director of European Waterways, says that he is already observing increasing interest.

This isn’t surprising seeing as how these vessels offer ideal accommodations for families, with room for anywhere between six and 20 passengers. Guests can cruise Europe’s canals and smaller waterways as well as the less-populated countryside.

“Cruising with European Waterways has always been about taking ‘the path less traveled,’ so much of our outdoor activities already take our guests away from crowded tourist attractions to the more exclusive, less populated settings,” said Banks. “Until travel returns to normal, we are further committed to providing a safe and healthy onboard environment for our guests, with pre-cruise checks for all on-board and the implementation of more stringent cleaning procedures, among other policies.”

Social distancing will likely be the norm for a while in Europe and around the world, and these barges offer the chance to enjoy scenery while still remaining safe.

For the most part, meals are served on board by the master chef and cruises feature exclusive private tours of castles, aristocratic estates and vineyards, plus other excursions, tailored to avoid the crowds.

L’Art de Vivre is the ideal barge for a family vacation. The eight-passenger vessel once carried supplies during World War One. Now, the boat has been completely modernized and cruises the Canal du Nivernais in Burgundy, France.

Family-friendly excursions include a visit to the Caves of Arcy-sur-Cure, which features some of the oldest cave paintings in the world, a medieval castle under construction using traditional methods at the Chateau Guedelon; the age of the dinosaurs in Cardo Land; and the fun and wildly eclectic artwork on display at the Fabuloserie Art and Sculpture Museum.

Family charters can also incorporate activities such as tennis, ice-skating and mini-golf as well as kayaking, quad biking and horseback riding.

European Waterways’ Family Charters are available throughout France, the U.K., Ireland, Scotland and Italy.

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