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Eighth Cruise Wonder, Anyone?

A writer for Conde Nast Traveler, Ondine Cohane, has produced the “Seven Cruise Wonders of the World.” It’s a clever idea and, like all such lists, highly subjective.

Picking up on it, Princess Cruises now has a contest for cruisers to add No. 8. The top prize is to sail away to one of the wonders (the eighth?) on a Princess ship.

What would your pick be?

Before deciding, here is Ms Cohane’s criteria for what qualifies as a cruise wonder, followed by her list of seven:

“The particular sense of arrival when approaching them by ship, the experience of anticipation and excitement when closing in on each treasure, and the sense of discovery that only an arrival by ship can really create.”

1. Fiordland National Park, New Zealand
2. Panama Canal
3. Shiretoko Peninsula, Japan
4. Glacier Bay National Park, Alaska
5. Christ the Redeemer (statue), Brazil
6. Trunk Bay, St. John, Virgin Islands
7. Hagia Sophia, Istanbul

So, about Number Eight?

Obviously, you draw on your experiences from cruising, not from pictures, We’ve seen two of her wonders (Glacier Bay, Panama Canal) and wouldn’t object to their inclusions. Using her criteria and our experiences, three candidates come to mind for the eighth wonder…

VancouverVancouver: Approaching the Lions Gate Bridge and sailing under it, both times in early morning as the sun crested over the North Shore Mountains.

Venice: As beautiful and intriguing an arrival by ship as we’ve ever seen, and the city lives up to the anticipation.

New York: Crossing under the Verrazano Bridge to be faced with the Statue of Liberty, that icon of freedom.

Over to you…

In the news…

• Royal Caribbean pushing 30 per cent discounts on all cruise ships
• First LGBT cruise line, Anteros, to announce itineraries in April 2016
• SplashGolf in interactive water environment installed on Norwegian Epic

Today at portsandbows.com: Day by day on Fathom's Cuba cruise


Royal Caribbean Liberty of the Seas
7 nights
December 13, 2015
Galveston (return): Falmouth, Grand Cayman, Cozumel
Inside: $512
Cost per day: $73
www.royalcaribbean.com

River Cruising Ports Unique…and Some Anonymous

North America's most prolific river cruiser, American Cruise Lines, has boats on the water in 30 states. That means many river ports, too many to mention here, but some of the "big ones" may surprise you.

This year, the cruise line polled its passengers to see which stops they like best. Call it river cruising's Top Ten.

hooper-lighthousePoughkeepsie, New York? Hannibal, Missouri? And the one they like best…St. Michael's, Maryland — a placew river cruisers recognize by Hooper's Lighthouse (right).

Nothing against these hamlets, which are clearly enchanting places that people enjoy visiting. But how many people outside driving distance have even heard of them?

There are some on the "favorites" list that fit the recognition category…the kind you don't have to ask the state. Nantucket. Astoria. Savannah. Glacier Bay…

Wait a minute — there's a river in Glacier Bay, where ocean-going ships cruise?

River cruising is full of surprises, isn't it? Maybe that's why it's growing so fast.

Caribbean Princess
7 nights
January 25, 2014
Houston (return): CozumelRoatanBelize
Inside: $499
Cost per day: $71
www.princess.com

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