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Top Short Cruise Holidays for 2017

Short break cruises, sometimes known as a “mini-cruise” or a “sampler” are one of the best options for those with time constraints. A short break cruise provides a welcome break without too much expense. One of the key factors people look at when booking a cruise is the price.

Two, three or even five night holidays are much easier on the wallet! 

A mini cruise will give you the chance to depart directly from the UK, making the holiday a comfortable convenience of leaving close to home rather than the hassle of having to get to the airport. Instead, begin enjoying your holiday the minute you step onto the ship and chill out for that much needed break.

Other advantages of a mini-cruise include:

  • Ideal for first timers
  • Destination discovery
  • Try new cuisines with a number of dining venues
  • Attractive pricing that you can upgrade without breaking the bank.

The following ships are the top picks for 2017 and offer a range from the casual to the elegant. Many of the same cruise lines offer short cruises on their other ships too.


Fred. Olsen Boudicca

Image courtesy Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines

Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines’ contains a vast amount of British elements. This is apparent with their ship, Boudicca. Boudicca is a compact ship, holding slightly more than 800 passengers but it more than makes up for that in size by being purely classical. Eat at simple yet charming locations like the Four Seasons Restaurant and the casual Tintagel Restaurant for some traditional dining.

You can also try the Secret Garden café for an authentic atmosphere that will have you believing you are in a Zen garden. The café serves a mixture of Indonesian, Thai and Indian cuisines in a buffet style. The aim of Fred. Olsen is not to be a mere cruise line but to feel more like a “home away from home”.

2017 highlights:

A five night round trip cruise from Greenock sails to Fort William, Ullapool and Invergordon, combined with scenic cruising through the Hebrides on the 26th May 2017.

On 8th Jun 2017 there is a 1 night journey sailing from Greenock (Glasgow) to Liverpool.


Cruise and Maritime Magellan

Image courtesy Cruise & Maritime Voyages

Cruise & Maritime Voyages is perfect for travellers that want a relaxing cruise and no ship better emphasises this than the Magellan. The ship holds 1,250 passengers and has more than 15 different cabin types.

The elegance of the ship is further seen in locations ranging from the Waldorf and Kensington restaurants, which contain intriguing continental menus and an ocean view that is unforgettable. You can also relax at the many bars and cafes like the Captain’s Club, Churchill’s Lounge, Hampton’s Bar and Sinatra’s Bar. The Magellan is ideal to sample some rest and relaxation while watching the world go by.

2017 highlights:

22nd Jul 2017 and 23rd Sep 2017, departing from Newcastle for an overnight trip, the cruise is focused on wine tasting.

Departing from London Tilbury on 1st Oct 2017 takes passengers on a weekend jaunt to Amsterdam.

13th Dec 2017 will appeal to Christmas holiday shoppers with a 2 night expedition departing from London Tilbury to Antwerp.

Queen Victoria

Cunard Queen Victoria

Image courtesy Cunard Line

Cunard’s Queen Victoria acts as a time machine in a way as it attempts to bring back the golden age with a modern day perspective. The glamour and glitz begins as soon as you step into the ship’s enormous lobby and are whisked away to see all of the amenities that the Queen Victoria has to offer. Spend some time in the Cafe Carinthia and Chart Room, the first and most principal of the common areas.

The entire ship is decorated in an aesthetically pleasing Art Deco design and this is evident in areas such as the Queens Room, the Royal Court Theatre and the Britannia Restaurant amongst others. This is a cruise for someone who wants a more elegant experience at an affordable price and this is easily achieved with a short break cruise aboard a ‘Queen’.

2017 highlights:

4th Jun 2017 presents a 4 night round trip from Southampton to Amsterdam and Bruges.  Passengers have a choice of excursions to Bruges, Ghent, Ypres or Paris if they wish. A five night journey takes place on 13th Nov 2017 and adds on another port at Cherbourg, along with the not to be missed Big Band Ball.

Norwegian Jade

Norwegian Jade

Image courtesy Norwegian Cruise Line

Although the Norwegian Jade may be somewhat smaller than its sister ships, it still contains enough pizzazz and styling to make the ship a fun experience. Recently refurbished at a cost of £280 million, the Norwegian Jade has a more modern appeal in an Art Deco style. With all of the trimmings and the colour scheme, the ship feels more welcoming than before.

An update of the accommodations has created more expansive living quarters. A new addition to the Jade is the addition of the Cavern Club, as seen on the Norwegian Epic. Of course, specialty dining is one of the main draws of the ship with classic dining experiences such as at La Cucina; Cagney’s Steakhouse; the Brazilian Moderno Churrascaria; Teppanyaki and Le Bistro.

2017 highlights:

Several two night cruises from Southampton to Hamburg are taking place with dates being 2nd June 2017 and 20th June 2017 stopping in Hamburg, Germany.


P&O Cruises Ventura

Image courtesy P&O Cruises

The P&O Cruises’s ship Ventura is yet another crown jewel in their extraordinary fleet line up. The ship, which holds more than 3000 passengers, is well known for its extensive entertainment options that will ensure that you will never get bored.

Some of the options include tributes to famous performers at the Tamarind Club, the Latin beats of Havana or even an authentic British experience in The Exchange pub. The ship is also well known for its large selection of restaurants. The Epicurean may be the most elegant restaurant on any cruise ship whereas those looking for a more exotic experience would do well to try the Indian cuisine at Sindhu.

2017 highlights:

On 26th April 2017 departing from Southampton for a four night round trip with port of calls at Amsterdam and Bruges.

The 31st May 2017 and 10 Nov 2017 offer four night round trips out of Southampton with one call at Bruges.

A four night cruise from Southampton on the 11th Aug 2017 with stops at St Peter Port, Guernsey and Bruges before heading back to Southampton.

On 15th Sep.2017, take advantage of a two nighter to St Peter Port, Guernsey on a round trip from Southampton.

29 Sep 2017, 27 Oct 2017 and 24 Nov 2017 are the dates to depart from Southampton for a quick two night journey to Bruges and back again.

For the first timer, a short break cruise holiday is the best option to obtain the overall cruise experience and satisfy the curiosity of what cruising is all about. For the seasoned cruiser, it is a perfect way to collect those cruise points for frequent guests and leave the stress behind until your next cruise holiday experience.

For more information on any of these cruises click here

Written by Veronica Shine

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