Brand new fall Crystal Adventures ashore showcase east coast heritage old and new

Past and present: Centuries-old shipwrecks and the 9/11 Memorial.  Carriage roads built by Rockefeller and the trendy streets of today’s Brooklyn.  Classic steak at nineteenth-century Michelin-starred Peter Luger Steak House and modern gastronomy at three Michelin-starred DANIEL.  Contrasts abound with Crystal Cruises’ fall Canada/New England cruises, as the ultra-luxury line unveils two dozen brand new shore-side Crystal Adventures for five 2014 Crystal Serenity voyages.   Beginning in September, travelers can step back in time to some of the …

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The last day aboard the Veendam

ABOARD the MS VEENDAM — Decisions are difficult on the last day of a cruise – perhaps especially so on just a week-long experience. With all that packing for the airplane to do, should we also take another shore excursion? There are new friends to say goodbye to, remember. Do we go to the final performance in the showroom? What are we going to wear tomorrow? And that ever-present dilemma: If we accidentally pack the wrong thing – …

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Thursday aboard the Veendam

ABOARD the MS VEERDAM — Our ship has arrived in Halifax as scheduled, on Thursday, and for the first time on this short cruise, Sara and I decided not to go ashore. We have been to Halifax before, on a Crystal cruise from Europe and Iceland-Greenland. And on Wednesday evening we related some of our Nova Scotia experiences for the benefit for a few of our shipmates. Nevertheless, taking a cruise is not all shore excursions. The …

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Tuesday and Wednesday aboard the Veendam

ABOARD the MS VEERDAM —  Here we are on Wednesday evening, looking back on two shore excursions in as many days — one exciting and one a little less so. Yesterday, Tuesday, first found us at the dock in Charlottetown, the gateway to Prince Edward Island, also known apparently as “Potatoland.” This we decided to explore on a guided tour and learned, among other things, that there are dozens of kinds of potatoes and that the best …

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Monday aboard the Veendam

ABOARD the MS VEERDAM —  It’s Monday. June 9, and back home the world is probably beginning just another work week. Cruisers aboard our floating playground are enjoying a single “sea day” on the Gulf of St. Lawrence on their way toward exploring Canada’s Maritime Provinces. On Saturday, we boarded the ship in Quebec City, a lively center of Canada’s French-speaking population. Unlike larger and more well-known Montreal, this storybook town seems to have dedicated itself to …

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Friday in Quebec

QUEBEC  CITY,  Quebec I flew into this French Canadian City this morning – a place I ‘ve never been before — and ran into an old friend: Holland-America’s 18-year-old cruise ship, the Veendam. Of course this veteran vessel has been upgraded a lot over the years. In 2012, I enjoyed virtually every minute of a two-week South America cruise aboard the same ship  I can see it now as I write from my high-floor room at the …

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Anticipation – it’s the same in French!

For me, at least, an essential element of a cruise vacation is simply the anticipation of the adventure. I’ve been experiencing this thrill again in advance of my June cruise which begins in Quebec City, Canada. My wife and I will be on board an old friend, Holland-America’s good ship Veendam. In 2012, I took the same vessel on a two-week cruise around the southern tip of South America, from Santiago, Chile to Buenos Aires, Argentina, covering …

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Crystal’s new extended land programs explore coveted Canadian cities and northeastern sites

Two new lavish land programs allow Crystal guests to extend their vacations with five 2014 luxury cruises through North America’s East Coast and French Canada.  Available on Crystal Serenity’s September-October voyages, the two- and three-night, pre- and post-cruise packages offer travelers the opportunity to explore beyond the rich New England/Canada cruise itineraries that begin or end in Québec City.  Guests can choose from programs in Toronto and Niagara Falls, Montréal and Québec City, or enjoy a free …

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Soft Un-Cruise adventure in British Columbia on an un-ship

For a visit to Canada’s islands and inlets on the west coast of British Columbia, cruise on a small vessel. There really isn’t any other choice. The big cruise ships hurry out of Seattle and Vancouver, headed north to Alaska from spring to fall, churning past Washington’s San Juan Islands, the Gulf Islands, and the wilds of coastal British Columbia where whales, dolphins, seals, and sea lions eat their fill and play to visitors’ cameras. Ferries run …

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Canada/New England cruises via the Royal Princess; Caribbean via the Regal Princess

Here’s an update on what to expect from the latest Royal Caribbean ships: Princess’s new ship, the Royal Princess (premiering next month) will be offering Canada/New England cruises from New York commencing in the fall of 2014. Four seven-day itineraries will be offered on the ship (the largest to sail the route); they will be available in September and October. In related news, the Regal Princess, beginning service in June of 2014, will be sailing a winter itinerary …

Read moreCanada/New England cruises via the Royal Princess; Caribbean via the Regal Princess

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