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Old August 4th, 2012, 02:19 AM
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Default Please offer recommendations of line-ship that would be a good fit

Hello. I have never taken a cruise before and am considering taking one or two over the next few years. Basically I have two ideas of where I might want to , and would like advice about which line or ship would be a good fit. I've written sort of a lot, but it might make suggesting something easier. Thank you for reading.

I am 40, male, single and generally quiet. My preferences may be a little odd, but they are me.

As long as a room is not loud, dirty, or physically uncomfortable, I don't care if it is small or inside. I expect to be out on deck or in a public space a lot - though I am concerned about crowding of public facilities. Maybe I'm missing a key point here - but I pretty much use hotel rooms as places to sleep and shower.

I do not like heavy crowding that I cannot avoid.

I do like most jazz and classical music, lectures, art, running or walking around, swimming, dancing, learning things, looking at the stars, and yes, ping pong and shuffleboard - I played them on land as a kid. I have a tux and it would be cool to wear it - but being single I am wondering if I'll just be the odd man out at a venue full of couples. I don't care about stage shows.

As long as it is palatable and I don't have rude servers or have to wait a lot, I don't much care about food. While I do like an occasional drink, the wine and spirits are not important to me.

I like to relax and enjoy the sea air....unless I am at a destination with fantastic wildlife or natural scenery, such as mountains, glaciers, or live volcanoes.

I'll start with the easy destination first. It has nothing much to do with life on the ship and everything about getting a good view and access to nature.

1. Alaska. If I were to go on an Alaska cruise, my goal is up close contact with scenery and wildlife - whales, eagles, calving glaciers. Up close as possible. Great scenery. I'm not as interested in ship board life in this case and "roughing it" is just fine. I have not much interest in land excursions. Which line would you recommend in this case?

2. A cruise with days at sea on a ship that fits what I like to do (see above). For something short, I'd probably want to start and/or end in Southern California, to save money. For something longer, I'm willing to fly to embark or to return home. As a first timer, the dream of a trans-Atlantic trip may be a bit much - but it's appealing. Maybe short makes sense. Which options would you recommend?
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Old August 4th, 2012, 04:41 AM
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I would recommend an Alaska cruise, but with a balcony if you can handle that. Although, I would re-think excursions if cruising there, you'd be missing out on a lot by not seeing more in each port...Just make sure the itinary includes a glacier stop, most possibly the highlight of an Alaska cruise. There are many to choose from, I love Princess in Alaska, but do some research and find the right one for you.
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Old August 4th, 2012, 09:25 AM
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Thanks for the advice, Donna!

I've seen a lot of Holland America and Princess options for Alaska. I'm also tempted to take a short trip from Vancouver to LA ("3 day" - really 2) all sea voyage to get experience of a couple days at sea. My fear is that such trips will basically have nothing going - no formal night, no enrichment - just bare bones while the ship is "reset" for a new set of cruises.
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Old August 4th, 2012, 06:20 PM
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I have to agree, it may get you the feel of a cruise, but with no ports, etc...you will miss all that and why not save that $ for the real thing with a few good excursions along the way.
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Old August 4th, 2012, 08:15 PM
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Why not try Carnival out of Long Beach? Easy introduction to cruising without any travel expense.
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Old August 4th, 2012, 09:34 PM
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Snoozeman: That might be a good idea.

I'm sort of a quiet guy - Carnival seems to be more aimed at other folks, but it's a big ship and maybe it would be awesome.

Last edited by longbeach1; August 4th, 2012 at 09:53 PM.
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Old August 4th, 2012, 10:20 PM
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Most short cruises will have a more party atomosphere,and a short cruise, I feel will cheat you out of the true cruise experience. By the time you start relaxing and getting into the cruise, it's time to leave the ship Going for a 7 day Carnival might surprise you, as there is quite a varied age group.

Depeneding on the time of year, if you decide to cruise from Florida, there are more ships to choose from,and I would suggest the Solstice class from Celebrity. Eclipse, Solstice, Equinox, Silhouette, or the new Reflection, coming soon.
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Old August 5th, 2012, 12:04 PM
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Default Nature cruises

You would likely be most comfortable on HAL and Celebrity. We have enjoyed both.
Also consider itineraries that include the Panama canal, Columbia, Bonaire, Costa Rica etc. There are some fantastic natural sites on these cruises!
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Old August 10th, 2012, 01:57 PM
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You sound like the type of cruiser into details and not a candidate for a 3 day booze cruise. Your local library has many books devoted to cruises. .Fodors and Frommers are excellent.Go to the other extensive on line cruise site-Cruisecritic.com.Go to message boards where all your questions will be addressed. Also thousands of reader ship reviews.It really takes a min. of a week cruise to get a real feel of cruising. Inside cabins are fine and a great way to save.
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Old August 10th, 2012, 02:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by longbeach1 View Post
1. Alaska. If I were to go on an Alaska cruise, my goal is up close contact with scenery and wildlife - whales, eagles, calving glaciers. Up close as possible. Great scenery. I'm not as interested in ship board life in this case and "roughing it" is just fine. I have not much interest in land excursions. Which line would you recommend in this case?

2. A cruise with days at sea on a ship that fits what I like to do (see above). For something short, I'd probably want to start and/or end in Southern California, to save money. For something longer, I'm willing to fly to embark or to return home. As a first timer, the dream of a trans-Atlantic trip may be a bit much - but it's appealing. Maybe short makes sense. Which options would you recommend?
Based on what you have stated I would recommend for:

Alaska: Holland America or Princess. They have great itineraries and ships. Most of their itineraries include Glacier Bay. The atmosphere will fit your stated requirements.

For your second cruise I would look for HAL, Princess or Celebrity out of San Diego or San Pedro. Carnival is also a possibility out of Long Beach but, while I enjoy Carnival, it may be a bit more "active" than what you would like. A round trip, Hawaii cruise, will give you the sea days you want plus the chance to see the islands. There are also some extended 10 - 12 day itineraries out of San Diego on Holland America ships. I also believe Royal Caribbean has a few Mexico cruises each year but these are becoming harder to find.

No matter what you choose I think you will have a great time.

Enjoy,
Mike
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