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Windstar Expands Its Shore Excursion Program



Windstar Cruises has broadened its shore excursion offerings over the last three years and more than doubling its options with more than 2,500 choices now available.

The cruise line’s expanded global deployment has led in part to the increase, sailing to new regions such as Alaska, Southeast Asia, Indonesia, Japan, Australia, New Zealand, Egypt and the Holy Land.

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Windstar now sails to more than 330 ports worldwide and offers 700 cruise departure dates through 2021.

The cruise line offers three different shore excursion categories that help guests choose the perfect match for their interests, activity levels, and budgets.

Windstar now offers 10 Beyond Ordinary Tours, which are in-depth experiences offered in select ports that feature the most over-the-top experiences that are best referred to as “once in a lifetime.” Three of these journeys were offered in 2018 and has introduced seven more this year.

The tours complement the small ship line’s popular Concierge Collection and Essentials Collection, offered in every port.

Guests can choose a panoramic helicopter flight from Monte Carlo that transports guests to Alain Ducasse’s La Bastide de Moustiers in Provence for a Michelin-starred lunch.

There is also an excursion in Roses, Spain, with access to the Sant Pere de Rodes Monastery for a private yoga session on the rooftop, followed by brunch with views of the Mediterranean Sea.

“Our team is located around the world and works incredibly hard to develop unusual tours that will interest our guests and be considered the best in destination delivery,” said Windstar director of product development Kelly Hubbard.

Windstar’s 10 new Beyond Ordinary experiences include those noted above and the following:

—Malaga & Almeria, Spain, Beyond Ordinary: Alhambra In-Depth & Insider’s Granada Overnight Tour

—Santo Tomas de Castilla, Guatemala, Beyond Ordinary: Tikal National Park

—Portimao, Portugal, Beyond Ordinary: Algarve Premium Race Tour

—Ashdod, Israel, Beyond Ordinary: Masada Flightseeing & Jerusalem Exploration

—Haifa, Israel Beyond Ordinary: Jerusalem, Masada Dead Sea, and Petra Overland

—Melbourne, Australia, Beyond Ordinary: Decadent Wine & Foodie Experience by Helicopter

—Bergen, Norway, Beyond Ordinary: Helicopter to Baroniet Manor with Horse Carriage

—Heimaey Island, Iceland, Beyond Ordinary: Snowmobile & Helicopter Glacier Adventure

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Royal Caribbean Makes Additional Comment on Future of Buffets



The buffet—as much a staple on cruise ships as anything—will live on in a different form, at least on Royal Caribbean vessels.

A week after Michael Bayley, president and CEO of Royal Caribbean Cruises, intimated that buffets would likely not exist when Royal Caribbean returns to the sea, reports something of an evolution on that stance.

Richard Fain, chairman and CEO of Royal Caribbean Cruises Limited, appeared on Coffee Chat, a weekly talk with travel advisors with host and Senior Vice President of Sales and Trade Support and Service Vicki Freed, and said buffets will change but not go away entirely.

“(Where) everybody reaches in and everybody touches the same tongs, you’re not going to see (that) on land or sea,” Fain said. “(But) it doesn’t mean that you don’t have a buffet. You might have it where all of that is served to you by other people. And there (are) other possibilities. But the point is that it will evolve.”

By way of example, Fain said to consider the Midnight Buffet.

“I don’t think anyone says, ‘Where’s the midnight buffet?’” he said. “You haven’t seen the midnight buffet for years and that was long before we had COVID-19. Tastes change and people change, and cruise lines change to accommodate.”

Fain told TravelWeekly, sister publication to, that cruisers will adapt, much as air travelers did in the wake of the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks.

“If you remember after (that), all of a sudden you had to do a strip search at the airport. You couldn’t take a bottle of water on the plane,” he said. “A lot of people said, ‘Nobody’s ever going to fly. Who’s going to want to go on an airplane?’ Airplane travel didn’t end. In fact, it grew. But it evolved. So it isn’t the same when you go today. You do go through security checks, and you do go through identity checks and frankly, we’ve become accustomed to it and the technology has helped make it easier.”

This post was published by our news partner: | Article Source

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