Cruising news: Cunard announces its 2020-21 cruise program

REGAL ROAMING

Cunard has announced its 2020-21 cruise program, which features world voyages by flagship Queen Mary 2 and younger sibling Queen Victoria, and a record 118-day Australian deployment for Queen Elizabeth that features both a range of short cruises between major Australian cities and longer journeys around Australia and New Zealand. All three ships visit Australia during the season for the first time in five years. Between November 2020 and May 2021, Cunard's three ships will call at 94 destinations in 38 different countries. Sailings range from short two-night breaks to a 108-night world voyage.

Phone 132 494. See cunard.com

FINE FARE

Regent Seven Seas Cruises has revealed details of the seven dining venues aboard its latest 750-passenger vessel, Seven Seas Splendor, which is due to set sail on February 2020. It includes main restaurant Compass Rose, Pacific Rim, offering pan-Asian dishes, and La Veranda buffet venue, which will transform into an Italian restaurant in the evenings. Meanwhile, there will be classic French fare at Chartreuse and steaks at Prime 7. The ship will also have a Culinary Arts Kitchen offering 20 culinary classes from teaching seafood preparation to professional cooking techniques, and new gourmet-focused shore excursions.

Phone 1300 455 200. See rssc.com.au

SOUTHERN COMFORT

Scenic has a new 12-day river cruise and land tour for 2020 that journeys from Paris to Lyon and sails the Saone and Rhone Rivers. No surprise that food and wine are a big focus, with an exploration of France's culinary capital Lyon and the vineyards of Beaujolais. The cruise also visits the former seat of medieval popes at Avignon, the town of Arles where Van Gogh lived and painted, and Provencal villages surrounded by lavender fields. The Spectacular South of France cruise-tour has regular departures between May and October 2020.

Phone 13 81 28. See scenic.com.au

BLOOMING MARVELLOUS

Avalon Waterways has five cruises in 2020 that visit northern Europe for the tulip season between mid-March and May. They include three new itineraries, including an eight-day Tulip Time in Holland & Belgium cruise that begins in Amsterdam and ends in Brussels, with opportunities to bike the riverbanks of Arnhem, spend time admiring Belgian towns Namur and Liege, visit the Grote Markt in Antwerp and meander along the Lower Town Streets of Brussels. The two other new offerings are an eight-day Tulip Time Highlights and 15-day Grand Tulip Cruise of Holland & Belgium cruises.

Phone 1300 230 234. See avalonwaterways.com.au

FLORAL TRIBUTE

Celebrity Cruises' new ship Celebrity Flora sets sail in the Galapagos this month, and will sail various itineraries around the islands year-round from its base in Baltra. The luxury 100-passenger vessel has been designed specifically for the Galapagos and features all-suite accommodation, the first-ever glamping experience at sea, new dining venues, an open-air stargazing platform, expert-led ecological seminars, and custom-designed yacht tenders for shore excursions. It is also equipped with cutting-edge oceanographic research equipment with which scientists will capture the latest data on climate and the oceans. Flora's maiden voyage is on June 30.

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Phone 1800 754 500. See celebritycruises.com.au

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