“Plan a Cruise Month is a great time to celebrate cruise travel as well as introduce new and diverse destinations to cruise travelers around the world, including Australasia,” said Cindy D’Aoust, president and CEO, CLIA. “A cruise vacation is the best, most comfortable and convenient way to explore the unique cultures and variety of landscapes throughout Australasia.”
Highlights of Cruising through Australasia
Diverse Destinations: Cruisers of all travel styles can find must-see places in Australasia.
• Akaroa, New Zealand: Reminiscent of the Norwegian Fjords, this tiny town offers a once-in-a-lifetime chance to sail up the strait and take in scenery made even more lush and beautiful by a long extinct volcano. Travelers sightseeing on foot can soak in the sights like painted timber cottages, art galleries and coffee shops.Off the Beaten Path Adventures: Travelers looking to both relax and kick adventure into high-gear certainly won’t be bored in this region with a wide variety of unique experiences to be had.
• Viti Levu, Fiji: This island, the largest of those comprising Fiji, is home to Mount Tomanivi, an extinct volcano that creates a scenic backdrop for both adventure and photos. Visitors can tour sugar cane plantations and learn more about the storied history on guided tours of the island, which is rumored to have been submerged in the Pacific multiple times.
• Sydney, Australia: This well-known “big city” is a must-see for every global traveler voyaging down under. The sprawling metropolis offers travelers views of glass and concrete downtown structures in the Central Business District, while the famous harbor in Circular Quay is a picturesque icon and home to the iconic Opera House and Harbour Bridge.
• Huahine, French Polynesia: This island in the archipelago of the Society Islands is truly a natural marvel filled with history. Travelers to the area can hike through the lush tropical jungles or worship at sacred temples.
• Picton, New Zealand: This relaxed town, located within a stone’s throw of the Marlborough wine region, offers incredible views across Queen Charlotte Sound and mountains. Visitors can enjoy hiking, imbibe in a glass of local wine, relax on the beach or simply pick up a handmade souvenir in one of the many gift shops.
• On Auckland Water: Water-lovers can indulge sailing urges and learn more about the City of Sails with a variety of tours including by bus, boat or on-foot.CLIA Travel Tips when Cruising Australasia
• Superb Snorkeling: The snorkeling in Australasia allows travelers to dive alongside some of the most unique and beautiful reefs and ocean life in the world.
• Fresh French Polynesia: In French Polynesia, cruisers can tour coconut plantations, vanilla orchids, banana groves, breadfruit trees and watermelon fields. Tastings may or may not be included.
• Live Lord of the Rings: Literature fans can follow in the footsteps of the Lord of the Rings with expert guided tours to visit locations featured in the films and learn more about how Middle Earth was created.
• Tahitian Safari: Safaris are not restricted to African cruises. Jeep safaris in Tahiti allow for viewing lush tropical jungles, feeling the mist of beautiful waterfalls and seeing some of the world’s most exotic animals in their natural habitat.
To ensure that cruising, or any vacation, goes as smoothly as possible, CLIA offers tips for how to prepare for an adventure in Australasia.
• Remember Respect: Travelers should keep in mind that locals in every destination do not exist for a photo opportunity. Cruise travelers hoping to take a photo of or with native inhabitants of the Australasia region should politely ask before taking a photograph or recording video and respect an answer of “no.”More about Plan a Cruise Month:
• Find an Agent: A cruise-certified travel agent can create an experience built around each traveler’s preferences and travel goals. Travelers can leave the cruise travel details to a professional and focus on truly enjoying the trip.
• Pack to Chat: To keep in contact with travel companions, travelers can include a dry erase board and marker in their suitcase to leave notes or write the day’s schedule or set cell phone reminders of excursions and events. Those hoping to connect with locals should research local dialect and download a translation app or pack a language book.
October is Plan a Cruise Month—a worldwide movement to learn more about cruising and how to plan and take a cruise vacation. The campaign, created by Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA), the unified voice and leading authority of the global cruise community, offers insight on the best cruise destinations, special cruise line deals and promotions as well as experts to help navigate the many cruise vacation options available for every travel style and budget. For more information, see Cruising.org.