Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines has announced that, in 2021/22, its fleet of smaller, more intimately-sized ocean ships – Balmoral, Braemar, Boudicca and Black Watch – will be visiting no fewer than 224 destinations in 73 countries, on 93 different itineraries, with durations between three and 153 nights, including 88 different areas of scenic cruising. Complementing the UK departure ports of Southampton, Dover, Liverpool, Newcastle and Edinburgh (Rosyth), Fred. Olsen will also be offering an expanded programme of exotic fly-cruises in 2021/22.
Peter Deer, Managing Director of Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines, said:
“We are thrilled to be introducing our new itineraries for 2021/22, underpinned by our desire and commitment to help our guests to explore, to discover and not just to ‘see’. For us, smaller ships bring big benefits, and we feel that we are just the right size for us.
“A family-run company to this day, specialising in personal service on a smaller scale, we were proud to be named ‘Best for Itineraries’ by the Cruise Critic experts in their ‘UK Editors’ Picks Awards 2019’, for a record fifth year in a row, and we received the ‘Gold Trusted Service’ status from independent review website, Feefo, once again in 2020.
“These prestigious accolades are testament to all the hard work, dedication and extensive research of all the teams involved in tailoring these immersive Fred. Olsen holidays, and we look forward to taking our guests to even more fascinating and unique destinations on our smaller ships in 2021/22.”
Fred. Olsen’s new 2021/22 ocean cruise programme will feature 12 maiden calls: Bluff and Picton in New Zealand; Crotone, Gallipoli, Milazzo and Monopoli in Italy; M’Diq in Morocco; Port d’Alcudia in Mallorca; Sandakan in Borneo; Savina in Formantera, in Spain’s Balearic Islands; Setubal in Portugal; and Trelleborg in Sweden.
Focussing on its small-ship strengths, Fred. Olsen’s new 2021/22 worldwide itineraries highlight the following key themes:
Small ships…can visit more interesting places
Fred. Olsen’s shallow-drafted Braemar made history in October 2019, when it traversed Greece’s historic Corinth Canal, at just 24-metres wide at its narrowest point – much to international acclaim! In April 2021 and September 2022, Braemar will return on another two outstanding ex-UK ‘Greek Islands & Corinth Canal’ voyages, of 25 nights each, showcasing small-ship cruising at its best. Braemar will also be undertaking two new 10-night Corinth Canal fly-cruises from Valletta, Malta, which will visit four different Greek Islands, as well as offering the chance to take in the ancient Acropolis from Piraeus and Olympia from Katakolon, birthplace of Olympic Games.
Boudicca’s 28-night ‘Transpacific Voyage with French Polynesia’ fly-cruise from Costa Rica to Auckland, New Zealand in November 2021 offers remote exploration to places that are difficult to reach, and culturally very different. Guests will get the chance to cross the largest ocean in the world and sail past remote and sparsely-populated islands, including volcanic San Benedicto, Sorocco and Clarion, part of the Revillagigedo Islands isolated off the coast of Mexico.
Boudicca’s follow-on 13-night ‘Exploring Cultural New Zealand’ fly-cruise from Auckland, to Sydney, Australia in December 2021 offers cultural experiences synonymous with New Zealand, from the indigenous Māori to the Scottish, and scenic cruising within the forest-topped mountain peaks of the Fiordland National Park, exploring Dusky Sound, Doubtful Sound and Milford Sound.
Small ships…can get much closer to beautiful destinations
Fred. Olsen’s smaller ships can dock in the heart of beautiful destinations, navigating low bridges and shallower waterways.
In Seville, Spain, sail the Guadalquivir River right into the city centre. In Helsinki, Finland, Fred. Olsen can dock on the edge of the market square. In Bordeaux, France, explorations begin right at the end of the gangway. In Copenhagen, Denmark, the Little Mermaid statue and Amalienborg Palace are just a short walk from the ship.
Small ships…show Norway at its best…and from five UK ports
A Norwegian fjords sailing with Fred. Olsen – the fjords specialist – is always an unforgettable experience. The cruise line celebrates its Norwegian heritage by navigating into some of the most intricate fjords, sailing direct from the UK.
Balmoral’s new ‘Northern Fjords of Norway’ cruise from Newcastle in August 2021 offers unique and size-restricted scenic sailing to Trollfjord, Nordfjord, Nærøysundet, Lodingen Channel, and Torghatten, and calling at the lesser-known ports of Leknes, Bodø and Åndalsnes, as well as passing Svartisen glacier. Due to the departure ports northern UK location, this incredible itinerary can be achieved in just nine nights.
Small ships…mean that guests can enjoy a relaxed, uncrowded time ashore
Fred. Olsen offers itineraries that are planned purposefully to avoid the busy tourist times, so that guests can get a real feel for the destination and access the places that they want to see much more easily.
Braemar’s 14-night ‘Uncrowded Caribbean Islands with Havana’ itineraries, in January and February 2022, feature lesser-known destinations, such as Kralendijk, Bonaire, and avoid guests being overwhelmed by thousands of other cruisers, as they will not be in port alongside multiple big ships; for instance, Braemar will be the only ship docked in Port Royal, Jamaica and Basse-Terre, Guadaloupe.
Other itinerary highlights and experiences include:
– Braemar’s nine-night ‘Loughs, Isles & Iconic Sites of Ireland’ cruise in August 2021, sailing past uninhabited islands and a glacial fjord, only navigable by smaller ships
– Black Watch’s 14-night ‘Fjords & Icebergs of Remote Greenland’ cruise in August 2021, taking in rugged mountains and icebergs, including the glaciers of Prins Christiansund
– Balmoral and Boudicca will both be offering ‘Uncrowded Baltic’ cruises in Autumn 2021, showcasing the ‘Jewels of the Baltic’ at a time when fewer tourists are visiting.
Braemar’s 14-night ‘Rivers of Spain & France’ scenic river sailing in September 2021 to places that are mostly off-limits to the larger ships, such as Seville, Nantes and Rouen
– Braemar’s ‘Adriatic’ adventure in September 2021, docking at the heart of 10 city centre ports – Ibiza, Kotor, Sibenik, Chioggia, Monopoli, Trapani and Aviles, Cadiz, Cartagena and Lisbon, with maiden calls to Crotone, Gallipoli and Monopoli. Visit the ‘marquee’ ports of Venice and Dubrovnik
– Take a trip to the Briskdal glacier in Norway with a locally born Professor of Geology from Olden
– Don’t just watch the hustle and bustle of local life in Mumbai, India; join a Dabbawala for the day and become part of it!
– Learn dog-sledding techniques from a local husky handler and ‘mush’ your own sled from Tromsø, Norway
– Join a local Pastry Chef in Lisbon, Portugal and make your own Pasteis de Nata
– In Andalucía, Spain watch a Flamenco show and then learn the moves from a local Bailaora
– Meet the owners of a local family-run chateau in Bordeaux, France and be guided through each stage of the wine-making process, from grape to glass
Fred. Olsen’s new 2021/22 itineraries will be released to its Oceans loyalty club members from 4th March 2020, and will go on general sale from Monday 9th March 2020.
For further information on Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines, visit the website at www.fredolsencruises.com