When I think of cruises the first thing that would come to mind is a very large boat with lots of people. Sure there is tons to do onboard, but if you want to see the world, you are going to have to get off the ship. Exploring on your own can be fun, but in an unfamiliar place, self-exploration may seem a little scary. Well never fear, cruise lines have come to the rescue and have started adding optional shore excursions. Norwegian Cruise Line has truly embraced the idea of offering shore excursions and offers various options at 95 different ports of call.
Here are some awesome adventures you can go on while Cruising Like a Norwegain.
Anne Frank House & Scenic Tour: Visit the hidden place where Anne Frank wrote her famous diary and discover Amsterdam with a relaxing panoramic tour. More than 60 years ago, during the Second World War, a Dutch Jewish family remained hidden from the persecution of the Nazis; the youngest daughter, Anne Frank, wrote a diary telling the everyday life of her family forced to hide. This diary became one of the most important documents of the Jewish persecution and the hidden house a testimony of a dramatic part of world history. In 1960 the house became a museum and today, the Anne Frank House is one of the most visited museums in Amsterdam. Due to the small dimensions of the house, the tour will be self guided. During your visit of the Anne Frank house, you’ll have the chance to visit the “Achterhuis”, the back of the house, where Anne’s family hid. In addition, you’ll also to see the exhaustive collection of documents, pictures and drawings that resume the life and time of the young writer. After the visit to the house museum, enjoy a city tour to glimpse the highlights of Amsterdam passing by the main city monuments, among them the Royal Palace, the New Church, the Portuguese synagogue built in 1675, the modern City Hall, the Waterloo square, and Central Station. Of particular interest is the architecture of Amsterdam’s houses – due to lack of space. In the 17th Century, the houses were mostly built narrow, not more than 30 feet wide and characterized by big narrow windows, decorative gable tops, very narrow stairs inside and a pulley outside to transport larger objects to upper floors.
Pisa & Beach: Stand up straight next to the Leaning Tower of Pisa for a famous photo op, and then spend an hour exploring Pisa. Your next destination is Viareggio, a seaside spot for lunching and shopping. End with a resort swim. Admire Pisa’s famous Field of Miracles where you’ll have time to walk around on your own to see the famous Leaning Tower of Pisa. In Pisa, you’ll have one hour at leisure to take in the sights or shop in the numerous small stores. You’ll then continue to the popular seaside resort area of Viareggio with free time for dining, shopping or going to the beach to simply laze on a sun bed under an umbrella. The seaside promenade is open to pedestrian traffic only and is lined with elegant shops offering the latest fashions, small boutiques and cafes. Enjoy lunch on your own at one of the resorts, cafes, or restaurants known for fresh seafood. You’ll then be taken to a famous beach, where your stay includes use of the changing rooms, the beach and the swimming pool, and the use of a complimentary sun bed and beach umbrella.
Great Stirrup Cay, Bahamas
Private Island Snorkel: If you know how to swim then we recommend you dive into the snorkel program. You’ll have your equipment all day, so you can snorkel when you feel like it. Swim or wade around in the sandy shallows to check out the many schools of fish and our artificial reef. Or if conditions permit, swim outside the cove and discover deeper water and coral formations. One of our most popular programs, this snorkel experience is perfect for beginners and experts alike. Ask any of the instructors for a free lesson, and then explore the exciting underwater world of NCL’s very own private island.
Hippo Water Slide: The Hippo Water Slide is the world’s largest inflatable water slide in the shape of a hippopotamus. This 40-foot high and 175-foot long Hippo is available at your leisure all day. The Hippo Water Slide is the world’s largest inflatable water slide in the shape of a hippopotamus. Don’t be left out, plunge down this three story slide in an exciting adventure with the whole family. This is an opportunity for thrill seekers or a nice cushy ride for those less daring. This is a fun activity for kids as well as adults.
Phillipsburg, St. Maarten
Golden Eagle Sailaway: Let your cares float away as you cruise on the ‘Golden Eagle’. If you feel like counting the flying fish or watching for dolphins, both can be done from a reclining position on the ship’s nets. Swim in a quiet cove or snorkel or just bob around on a noodle. Party on the way home to island music and tasty treats. The ‘Golden Eagle’ will nuzzle her bow or anchor close to shore on one of the finest pink-sand beach you’ll encounter in The Caribbean. Homeward bound, the crew sets the sails as you listen to great music while enjoying champagne, rum punch, sodas and light snacks.
Victoria, BC, Canada
Victoria by Horse-Drawn Trolley: Let us take you back to another time and experience Victoria at the pace of yesteryear. Your horse-drawn trolley is drawn by two magnificent draught horses dressed in fine harnesses as this guided tour takes you around beautiful Victoria. Let us take you back to another time and experience Victoria at the pace of yesteryear. Your horse-drawn trolley waits, with blankets to keep you warm in the cool evening breeze. The trolleys are drawn by two magnificent draught horses dressed in fine harnesses, and the passenger areas are covered to provide protection in the unlikely event of a summer shower. This guided tour heads out from the pier along the Victoria waterfront and then travels through the historic James Bay residential neighborhood as we wind our way back along the harbor with stunning views of the thousands of lights trimming the Legislative buildings. Note: This is an open-air vehicle and we recommend you bring a jacket. Guests will need to navigate two steps to board the trolley and due to safety concerns, wheel chairs, walkers, strollers and scooters must be left at the departure location.
Could it possibly get any better than a cruise and pre-planned shore excursions? Of course! Book a 2012 cruise by May 13, 2012 and shore excursions for Little Norwegians, 12 years old and younger, are FREE and ages 13-17 years old are 50% off. Restrictions apply. Click here for details, contact or visit your local Boscov’s Travel or call 800-755-8020.