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Your Guide to Cruise Shore Excursions

Cruising is all about seeing the world in a special way and with plenty of exclusive shore excursions at your fingertips, you’ll make the most of each destination. You’re guaranteed to see your favourite cities in a new light with everything from 4×4 adventures, snorkelling through coral reefs and a private helicopter tours – it’s a sea of adventure.

Enhancing your cruise experience

As you’re spending your holiday island hopping, shore excursions enhance each port visit. It’s a great way to check off a handful of items off your bucket-list. Better yet you’ll be joined by destination experts who will bring you a high quality experience. It also means you spend less time worrying about transportation and reservations because when booking with your cruise line, it’s all completely covered in the price. The benefits are never ending, you skip the hassle of arranging your own onshore activities and your ship won’t depart until you have returned. And with planned excursions you have the added advantage of surrounding yourself with your newfound friends.

With everything from dog sledding in Alaska to a stingray swim in the Caribbean, it’s all about making the most of your destination and if you want to see it all in one day, you can! That’s the beauty of cruise excursions, they’re experiences you’ll be running back to tell the family.

If shore excursions aren’t for you and you prefer grabbing a map and tackling the cobbled streets of Italy yourself or maybe spend the day lounging around the beach of Tenerife. Then don’t worry because they are completely optional.

Be quick!

Limited spaces are available so we recommend booking any excursions several weeks before your ship departs. It couldn’t be simpler – just give your cruise line a ring or call us on 0800 072 3790 to book yourself on an amazing adventure. In most cases you’ll receive a notification via email a few weeks before your departure.

Don’t worry, you can book onboard if you fancy a spur of the moment experience. Just head to reception and you’ll find a shore excursion desk with plenty of information. If the spaces are available you’ll have until noon the day before the shore excursion to book.

Shore excursions can range from anywhere between £20 per person to hundreds of pounds. It all depends on how extravagant your activity is, it also varies depending on your cruise line. Most cruise lines work in US dollars so remember to take the exchange rate into consideration.

Active vs relaxation

There’s a mind boggling amount of tours to choose from and they cover all kinds of activity levels. Get that adrenaline pumping with active tours from zip-lining, hiking adventures, cave tours and helicopter thrills. Take things down a notch with spa days, wine or food tasting, turtle swimming and sightseeing. Remember shore excursions look different in different parts of the world. In the Caribbean you’ll find shipwreck diving and private beaches and in Europe you’ll focus more on culture and history.

Full vs half day

You don’t have to spend your entire day on a shore excursion, they vary in length. You can indulge in a few of your favourite activities, fill your day with a one wonder adventure or spend half the day doing your own thing.

Journeys outside of your port will most likely take up the entire day. Half a day tours might focus on an activities such as a three-hour kayak trip or city highlights tour. Don’t worry about sticking with your tour guide either – a fair few tours take you to your destination and then you’re free to explore, just remember to be back for the bus in time.

Concierge or boutique

Boutique excursions give you that personalised experience, this could be anything from a cooking class in a renowned French cooking school or a behind the scenes tour in the old city of Dubrovnik.

Take things up a notch with the cruise lines car and driver packages which allow you to customise your own tour. Hire a concierge to arrange exclusive activities for you and your travel party, and see the world in style. Once again prices can vary depending on your cruise line and the experience you’re looking to have. Don’t hesitate to contact us about prices for a personalised trip.

Make the most of the amazing destinations you’ll discover and check out our cruise deals here to get a head start ticking off your wish list.