The Shipping News: New shore excursions with Scenic Eclipse

REMOTE FLOAT

Scenic has released details of the inaugural season shore excursions for Scenic Eclipse, which launches in August 2018. Among them is the opportunity to search for reindeer and polar bears on a hike in Norway's Svalbard Islands, and explore the Westman Islands, home to Iceland's largest puffin colony. Guests could also spend Christmas Day 2018 on South Georgia Island among colonies of king penguins, or retrace the footsteps of explorer Sir Ernest Shackleton, from his first arrival point on the east side of South Georgia Island to Stromness, during a 21-day Antarctic voyage.

Phone 13 81 28. See scenic.com.au

GRAND VOYAGES

Voyages to Antiquity has launched its 2018-19 cruise program in South Africa, India and south-east Asia, which features six itineraries and five grand voyages, including an epic 138-night grand odyssey across three continents return from Athens. The cruises offer immersive experiences on land such as visits to India's Golden Triangle highlights, the pagodas of Myanmar, and Maldivian beaches, as well as a classic safari in Africa. Voyages to Antiquity specialises in in-depth itineraries, expert-led tours and on-board enrichment programs; its ship Aegean Odyssey carries 350 passengers and is compact enough to visit small ports.

Phone 02 9959 1345. See voyagestoantiquity.com.au

NINE LIVES

Ponant has just released sales for more than 70 departures on cruises that together call at more than 200 ports in 2019, on its fleet of what will be by then nine ships, four of them new. There are 44 departure dates for the Mediterranean, with 35 different itineraries, five new. Also new are two departure dates for a cruise that crosses the five Great Lakes of North America in autumn, plus a choice of cruises in Central and South America. New ship Le Laperouse also sails an inaugural season in the Kimberley.

Phone 1300 737 178. See ponant.com

RAIL AND SAIL

Cruise Express has a new 25-night Scotsman and the Baltic rail-sail package departing Australia on May 16, 2018. The luxury itinerary features hotel stays in London and Edinburgh and a return heritage rail trip between the two cities, hauled in part by the iconic Flying Scotsman locomotive, which was built in 1923 and broke the 100mph record in 1934. It's followed by a 14-night round-trip Baltic cruise from Southampton on Celebrity Silhouette that visits Stockholm, Tallinn and Helsinki and also has overnight stays in St Petersburg and Copenhagen.

Phone 1300 766 537. See cruiseexpress.com.au

CUBAN ADDITIONS

Regent Seven Seas Cruises has announced Cuba calls on six itineraries over its 2018-19 Caribbean season. Travellers can visit Havana on some itineraries aboard Seven Seas Mariner, Seven Seas Voyager and Seven Seas Navigator, departing Miami between October 2018 and March 2019. Three itineraries feature midnight departures from Havana, providing guests with time to sample the city's evening culture. Among them, a December 6, 2018, voyage on Seven Seas Voyager takes guests on a 10-night western Caribbean itinerary, while a 12-night December 16 voyage through the eastern Caribbean will celebrate Christmas on board.

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Phone 1300 455 200. See rssc.com.au

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