Starring the famous Bernina Express and Glacier Express trains in Switzerland
A new cruise tour launched by Cruise Express will take Australians on a luxury Mediterranean cruise and across the roof of Europe by train to the Swiss Alps and the world’s most photographed mountain, the Matterhorn, in June, 2019.
The exclusive, 20-night ‘Mediterranean to Matterhorn’ package includes a nine-night cruise from Barcelona to Venice and a seven-night overland tour by coach and rail to Zurich.
Departing Australia on June 16, 2019, the itinerary begins with two nights in Barcelona including a classic, Spanish tapas dinner and a visit to Antoni Gaudi’s mammoth, multi-spired basilica, which is still under construction after 136 years, with completion expected in 2026 – 100 years since the death of the famous architect.
Guests then board Celebrity Constellation for a nine-night cruise to Toulon on the French Riviera, Monaco, Pisa/Florence, Rome, Naples, the fjord-lined, medieval port of Kotor in Montenegro and Split on Croatia’s sun-drenched Dalmatian coast before disembarking in Venice.
The journey then heads inland by coach to Verona where guests will have tickets to a spectacular opera in a huge, open-air amphitheatre built in the first century. Two nights in the Italian Lakes district follow with a cruise on sparkling Lake Maggiore before guests board the renowned Bernina Express train – the highest railway journey in the Alps – for a spectacular ride over 196 bridges and through 55 tunnels from Tirano in Italy to the cosmopolitan ski resort of St Moritz.
After a night in St Moritz, the adventure continues aboard the world-famous Glacier Express train, also known as one of the world’s slowest ‘express’ trains, with the spectacular 7.5 hour journey to the car-free town of Zermatt averaging just 29km/h. The winding journey over the Swiss Alps, past glaciers and through verdant, cow-filled valleys, traverses 91 tunnels and 291 bridges, with lunch served along the way.
Two nights are spent in Zermatt at the foot of the majestic Matterhorn, reportedly the world’s most photographed mountain. The itinerary includes an awe-inspiring ride up Europe’s highest cable car, reaching a breathtaking vista point of 3800m, or 1600m higher than Mt Kosciuszko.A night is also spent in Zurich before the flight home.
Including return flights from Australia, the 20-night Mediterranean to Matterhorn package is available from $10,990 per person, twin-share.
A second passenger half-price deal is available on a special, short-break cruise along the Western Australian coast in January, 2019, designed to honour the ANZAC troops who sailed from Australia to the battlefields of Europe during World War 1.
The five-night cruise aboard Cruise and Maritime Voyages’ Australia-based ship, Astor, will sail, round-trip from Perth on January 6, 2019, bound for Esperance and Albany on the spectacular southern coast of WA. Esperance is home to some of Australia’s whitest beaches and the world’s only full-size replica of England’s famous Stonehenge monument while the former whaling town of Albany was the last sight of Australia for 41,000 troops who sailed in convoys of ships to the trenches of Europe during the Great War from 2014-18.
Today, Albany, a former whaling base, is cemented as one of Australia’s principal commemoration centres of the ANZAC legend with an award-winning National ANZAC Centre, numerous monuments of remembrance and a new ‘Field of Light – Avenue of Honour’ outdoor light installation open from October, 2018, to ANZAC Day, April, 2019. The installation features 16,000 lights shining in the colours of local wildlfowers.Albany is also home to the spectacular Gap and Natural Bridge rock formations, pristine beaches and award-winning wineries and craft breweries and quality, fresh produce such as oysters, trout olives and goat’s cheese.
Including two relaxing days at sea, the WW1 Memorial Cruise will offer an onboard memorial cruise off Albany, a special remembrance service at the Desert Mounted Corps Memorial in Albany and an onboard WW1 photographic exhibition. The cruise also features lectures by war historian and author, Neville Browning OAM, who has penned more than a dozen books on Australia’s military history, and also war storyteller and author, Jon Doust, who will recount tales of his own family’s involvement in the Great War.
Cruise and Maritime Voyages will donate part of the proceeds from every cruise fare to Legacy in gratitude to the sacrifice made by the ANZACs and those they left behind.
Fares for the five-night cruise are available from $1029, twin-share, with the fare for a second person half-price at $514. The 50 per cent discount for a second passenger is available until sold out. Connecting flights to and from Perth are additional.
Cruise Express is also offering the pre-cruise option of travelling for four days from Sydney to Perth aboard the iconic Indian Pacific train from $2389 per person, twin-share, in Gold Class, including beverages, meals and off-train experiences.
18-night fly, stay and cruise tour – Save $600 per couple. Book by August 31, 2018.
The Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo, the rooms of Buckingham Palace, the Royal Yacht Britannia, a luxury country manor and a hotel where Winston Churchill once drank are among the highlights of a new cruise tour from Cruise Express which circumnavigates the British Isles.
To mark the release of the 18-night ‘Crown and Country’ cruise tour, departing Australia on August 15, 2019, Cruise Express is offering a $300 discount per person, twin-share, if booked before August 31, 2018.
Hosted by Cruise Express, the tour begins with one nights’ accommodation in Tynley Hall, a Victorian-era mansion surrounded by lush parklands. Guests then board Princess Cruises’ Crown Princess, for a 12-night cruise circumnavigating the British Isles. Destinations during the cruise include Guernsey, Cork and Dublin in Ireland, Belfast in Northern Ireland and the Scottish ports of Glasgow, Inverness and Edinburgh as well as a visit to the French port of Le Havre near Paris.
* A cruise on Loch Lomond, the largest lake in Great Britain.
* A tour of the Royal Family’s former Royal Yacht Britannia, moored near Edinburgh.
* The world-famous spectacle of the Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo, which features a 1000-strong cast of massed pipers, dancers and artists performing in a floodlit, outdoor arena at night in the grounds of historic Edinburgh Castle.
After disembarking in Southampton, England, guests will travel to nearby Sussex for a ride across the meadows on the Bluebell Railway steam train. A three-night stay at the historic Royal Horseguards Hotel in London follows. The hotel once encompassed the National Liberal club where historical figures such as Winston Churchill would drink and smoke cigars. During the stay, a half-day sightseeing tour of London will showcase the city’s iconic sights.
A memorable afternoon tour inside Buckingham Palace – one of London’s most famous landmarks – is also included in the package. Dating back to 1703, the palace has been the monarch’s official residence since 1837. Surrounded by he largest private garden in London, the sprawling palace boasts 775 rooms including 52 principal bedrooms, 188 staff bedrooms, 78 bathrooms, 92 offices and 19 state rooms.
Including return flights from Australia, the 18-night, guided,‘Crown and Country’ package is available from $8690 per person, twin-share, including the $300 discount.
From country music to rock’n’roll, the blues, jazz and salsa, a new, music-themed cruise tour to the USA and Cuba will jive across the genres, celebrating the history and diversity of iconic music destinations including Nashville, Memphis, New Orleans and Havana.
Launched by Cruise Express, the exclusive, 18-day ‘Cuba & All that Jazz’ cruise tour will depart Australia on September 20, 2019, and start with an eight-day, pre-cruise land tour through the music capitals of southern USA. Beginning in the country music centre of Nashville, guests will visit the most famous stage in America, the Grand Ole Opry, the Country Music Hall of Fame, famous recording studios and taste a nip at a local whiskey distillery.
The focus then moves to Memphis – the official home of blues music – where guests will wander along iconic Beale Street, lined with clubs and juke joints celebrating the sounds of legends like BB King. No visit to Memphis would be complete without a visit to Graceland, the home of the king of rock’n’roll, Elvis.
The tempo rises as guests travel to the home of jazz -‘The Big Easy’ – New Orleans, for a three-night stay, with a choice of a walking tour through the streets of the French Quarter or a tour of the area’s magnificent mansions and oak trees.The nights will be filled with music and dancing, including a visit to the Maison Bourbon Jazz Club.
The tone changes again as guests head to the art deco glamour and Latino culture of Miami, where guests will board Oceania Cruises’ luxurious ship, Insignia, for a seven-night Caribbean cruise to three ports in Cuba – the capital, Havana, Santiago de Cuba and Cienfuegos. Four complimentary shore tours are included.
Cuba’s infectious salsa music, cocktails, classic cars, giant cigars and colonial history will be showcased from each port as guests see the island that inspired acclaimed author, Ernest Hemingway, emerge from the shadows of time.
Including return flights from Australia, the ‘Cuba & All That Jazz’ cruise tour is available from $9990 per person, twin share.
New heritage rail and sail tour from Brisbane to Sydney return Six-day short break by ship and historic train –November 2018
Cruise Express is marking the second anniversary of its exclusive, heritage rail and sail tours by releasing a new tour from Brisbane in November, 2018 –a six-day trip featuring a two-day cruise to Sydney and returning on a heritage rail motor.
Ideal for train and cruise fans across Australia, and hosted by Cruise Express, the exclusive ‘Harbour City Limited’ tour also offers guests the opportunity to cruise on Sydney Harbour aboard the historic tall ship, James Craig, with two nights spent at the art deco Grace Hotel in the heart of Sydney with breakfast included.
Guests will commence their journey in Brisbane on November 18, 2018, onboard the 2000-passenger Sun Princess for a relaxed, two-night cruise to Sydney. Aboard Sun Princess, guests can enjoy gourmet cuisine, take in a Broadway-style style show or just sit back and relax by the pool.
On arrival in Sydney, guests will spend two nights in the historic Grace Hotel with plenty of time for shopping and to explore the city, with an afternoon harbour cruise aboard the historic James Craig sailing ship also included. Guests then board the heritage rail motor, 621/721, for a leisurely return journey to Brisbane.The rail motor, built in 1962, features windows that open as the everchanging scenery rolls by.
The two-day rail trip includes morning tea at the Rail Motor Society’s base in the Hunter Valley where guests can learn about the restoration work undertaken by dedicated volunteers. Accommodation and dinner in the jacaranda city of Grafton is also part of the trip north.
The next morning, guests will re-board the rail motor for their final journey north to Brisbane’s Roma Street Station via a morning tea stop in Casino.
Departing on November 18, 2018, the five-night ‘Harbour City Limited’ rail and sail tour is available from $1990 per person, twin-share. Flights to and from Brisbane, if required, are additional.