Let’s be honest, cruising and Covid didn’t exactly start out on the best terms, did they?
But Aussie cruise fans can rejoice as the world opens up and ships set sail once more.
International large-ship cruising is still on pause in Australian waters, but if you’re champing at the bit for a summer on the high seas, there’s a raft of options.
Smaller expedition ships are plying our coastline on adventurous itineraries to the Great Barrier Reef or Western Australia – extremely exotic after such an extended border closure, to be sure.
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And now that international travel is resuming, you can take great pleasure in dusting off your passport and heading to all points of the Seven Seas including Hawaii and the Mediterranean.
An occasion as big as Queensland opening the interstate doors calls for a momentous celebration, so go large with this new all-inclusive cruise that’ll take you along the length of the Great Barrier Reef and into the heart of the Queensland outback for a day (14 nights departing Brisbane on December 20, 2021). You’ll spend the festive season snorkelling the remote ribbon reefs, sailing and feasting on seafood in the Whitsundays, and connecting with Indigenous culture on K’gari (Fraser Island).
Western Australia’s hard border should come down by February and it will be as thrilling as jetting off overseas when you touch down in Perth. Extend your summer with True North’s West Coaster cruise (March 3-13, 2022), which fuses on-board luxury with access to remote destinations. As it winds north from Fremantle to Dampier, experience the history of the Houtman Abrolhos, snorkelling at Ningaloo and fishing in the Montebello Islands.
With flights to Hawaii recommencing this month, spend your summer stocking up on “mana” while island hopping aboard the Pride of America. After a direct 10-hour flight you can be on the first sailing (January 22-29, 2022) since the voluntary suspension of cruises in 2020. You’ll explore four islands in seven days, visiting Honolulu, Hilo and Kona with overnight stays in Kahului and Nawiliwili.
Embrace the balmy splendour of a Mediterranean summer on board the world’s largest cruise ship when Wonder of the Seas sets sail from Rome and Barcelona in 2022 (seven nights; departures May to October). As it takes in quintessential summertime holiday spots from Capri to Palma de Mallorca and Provence, you’ll be feeling a million miles from Covid cares.