Travel + Leisure hand-selected 16 different types of on-the-water adventures to consider in the year ahead.
Cruising is in the midst of an epic comeback. Travelers are turning to trusted lines to help minimize the hassles of country hopping and maximize relaxation time in each destination. With 2023 poised to be a big year for both new and frequent cruisers — thanks in part to an abundance of new ships and itineraries — Travel + Leisure has hand-selected 16 different types of adventures to consider in the year ahead.
The Nile on Viking Osiris
Viking Osiris is the line’s newest on the Nile, with just 41 suites and staterooms, a pool deck, and cool Scandinavian design. The ship sails between Aswan and Luxor, with pre- and post-sail touring in Cairo included with the 12-day itineraries.
Alaska on Ocean Victory
The Alaska trips on Ocean Victory, a fuel-efficient, 93-cabin ship from American Queen Voyages, come with the opportunity to kayak past glaciers and spot bald eagles and grizzlies. The vessel, which first debuted in 2021, represents an evolution in ship design for American Queen, with its cutting-edge X-Bow design (which helps reduce fuel burn) and chic suites, including many with private verandas.
The Galápagos Islands on Quasar Expeditions’ Evolution
In June, Quasar Expeditions is offering a Galápagos cruise on the 32-passenger Evolution for children with autism spectrum disorder, hosted by an expert in supporting families with special needs. The trip, which departs June 24, is a seven-night expedition that takes in many of the most notable sites on the islands, with programming specially tailored for both kids and adults.
Cruising Antarctica on Silver Cloud or Silver Endeavour
Silversea gives Antarctica travelers the option to skip two days of sailing the often-rocky Drake Passage. Instead, they can fly in comfort over the waters separating South America from the continent, then hop aboard the 127-suite Silver Cloud and 100-suite Silver Endeavour for trips along the frosty coastline.
The Caribbean, South Pacific, and Australia With Windstar Cruises
Windstar has a series of 2023 itineraries on the 156-cabin Star Pride and 171-suite Wind Surf that hit yachty Caribbean ports like Jost Van Dyke, in the British Virgin Islands, and Anguilla. The small-ship line, which is known for both its sleek “Star Plus Class” ships and its classic vessels with their dramatic sails, also has an array of itineraries along the coast of Australia and in the South Pacific.
Cold-weather Cruises on Le Commandant Charcot
A game changer in lowering emissions, Ponant’s brand-new hybrid-electric Le Commandant Charcot can operate on less-carbon-intensive battery power and liquefied natural gas and has room for 245 guests. The game-changing ship, which has already hosted eclipse watchers on a trip to Antarctica and sailed to the geographic North Pole, also offers adventures in places such as Iceland and Svalbard.
Cruises Closer to Home With American Queen Voyages
American Queen Voyages will offer the longest trips in the line’s history in 2023, with two 23-day river itineraries on the Mississippi and Ohio aboard the 123-stateroom American Countess. “The ship will sail more than 1,700 miles from Minnesota down the Ohio River and Upper Mississippi River, calling on more ports and offering more guided tours than ever before,” as T+L reported in August.
The South Pacific on Paul Gauguin
Just refurbished, the 165-cabin Paul Gauguin will be exploring the Pacific in 2023, with trips to the Cook Islands, Fiji, the Marquesas, and the Society Islands. The single-vessel brand was voted the very best small-ship cruise line in the World’s Best Awards 2022, as T+L readers gave particularly high marks to the Paul Gauguin’s on-board staff.
Mystery Cruising With Uniworld
Next year, Uniworld Boutique River Cruises will offer two nine-night “mystery cruises,” with the European destinations revealed only as guests depart: similar trips in 2022 sold out. Travelers on the June 2023 trip will meet in Amsterdam, while the July 2023 sailing rendezvous in Nice, France — from there, the itinerary is anybody’s guess.
Expedition Cruising With Seabourn
Seabourn Venture, the luxury line’s first 132-suite expedition ship, launched in late summer with itineraries in northern Europe; trips in Japan, the South Pacific, and Antarctica are on tap for 2023. Seabourn Pursuit, which will be a sibling ship to Venture, is scheduled to arrive in 2023, the second in Seabourn’s growing expedition fleet.
Seeing Europe’s Gems by Small Ship
Slated to launch in the spring, the 228-passenger Scenic Eclipse II will visit ports from Dublin to Lisbon, as well as both polar regions, in 2023 and 2024. The innovative vessel, which is similar in design to Scenic Eclipse, will have luxurious suites complete with butler service and all sorts of extras, including helicopters (plural) and a submarine.
Visiting Wild Places With Fewer Impacts
Aurora Expeditions, whose newest vessel is the 71-cabin Sylvia Earle, guarantees that all operations are carbon neutral, pledging to offset all emissions. The newly launched ship, with its fuel-saving X-Bow design, doesn’t skimp on expedition necessities: guests on Antarctica expeditions can explore by Zodiac or snowshoe and even, when conditions allow, go scuba diving in polar waters or camping on the ice.
Solo Cruising With a New Line
Upstart cruise line Atlas Ocean Voyages offers all-inclusive fares on its two 98-suite vessels, and, in a departure from industry norms, the brand doesn’t charge solo travelers a single supplement. The line’s second ship, World Traveller, launched in November 2022. It will sail nine-, 10-, 11-, and 12-night round-trips from Ushuaia, Argentina, to Antarctica through March 2023 before heading to the Mediterranean to hit Spain, France, and Portugal.
The Galápagos Islands on Celebrity Flora
Another ship that sails the Galápagos, the Celebrity Flora, has 50 suites, many with large verandas, plus a stargazing deck and a fleet of comfortable tenders. Two itineraries are available, the first of which is a seven-night “northern loop” that visits the volcanic island of Santiago and has guests spotting red-footed Boobies on Genovesa Island, a place sometimes called Bird Island thanks to its famed animals. The line’s “outer loop” also includes plenty of wildlife watching, plus a stop at the less-frequented Daphne Island.
Doing Wine Country on Seadream II
SeaDream Yacht Club has two Wine Voyages in 2023, which include vineyard visits in Greece, Italy, and Spain and a winemaker-hosted dinner on the 112-guest Seadream II. The highly regarded intimate-ship line wins frequent accolades from T+L readers for its on-board service and well-appointed vessels.
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