Imagine standing with your arms wide open on the deck of a magnanimous ship that gently rushes towards the horizon. You are far away from the real world, enveloped in a bubble of salty ocean breeze and infinite skies. Sounds magical, right? Taking a cruise is no less than a life-altering experience, so for all of you who are looking to check off the experience from your bucket lists, there’s no better place to begin your voyage than Asia’s cruise hub—Hong Kong.
Why choose Hong Kong:
Located centrally in the glistening South China Sea, Hong Kong provides a gateway to the most exotic locales of Asia. The country’s close proximity to Japan, Korea as well as southeastern countries such as Vietnam and Philippines offers the most stunning cruise-routes in the world. The country has created a niche for itself by promoting a cruise holiday culture—a trend that is all set to take the travel industry by storm. With 3,500 new luxury cruise vessels, you can now experience the best of Hong Kong and Asia in style!
These cruises include short voyages for first-time cruisers, multi-destination trips as well as week-long excursions across Asia. The unique aspect about all cruises from Hong Kong is that they are culturally immersive along with being luxurious. So you won't just be travelling for leisure, but also engaging with diverse customs and traditions of Asia.
Plan your holiday
While there are innumerable cruises to choose from, you must get a taste of luxury on newly-introduced cruises. World Dream, Voyager of the Seas and Spectrum of the Seas. While World Dream home-ports all through the year, Voyager of the Seas starts in Hong Kong from July -August, and Spectrum of the Seas is deployed from December 2019 - January 2o20.
The enchanting World Dream:
World Dream, one of the most popular luxury cruise ships across the world offers exciting trips from Hong Kong. This one-of-a-kind cruise will take you across China, Vietnam and Phillipines. Its massive decks, spacious staterooms as well as international and Asian dining options will provide you a world-class cruising experience. One of the most fascinating entertainment facilities within the cruise is its VR/AR arcade gaming where you can dive into underwater worlds or shoot yourself into space. At the same time, activities such as new laser shows, stage performances, fireworks display along with outdoor plaza offer ample opportunities to make this cruise the best vacation of your life.
Here are the itineraries you can choose from:
1. Weekend Escape (2-3 nights) : Hong Kong – Cruising – Hong Kong.
2. Da Nang / Ha Long Discovery (4 nights) : Hong Kong – Cruising – Da Nang / Ha Long Bay, Vietnam – Cruising – Hong Kong.
3. Okinawa Discovery (5 nights) : Hong Kong – Cruising – Naha, Japan– Miyakojima, Japan – Cruising – Hong Kong.
4. Impressions of Vietnam (5 nights) : Hong Kong – Cruising – Da Nang, Vietnam – Ha Long Bay / Nha Trang, Vietnam – Cruising Day – Hong Kong.
5. Philippines Explorer (5 nights) : Hong Kong – Cruising – Manila / Boracay, Philippines – Cruising Day – Hong Kong.
The charming Voyager of the Seas:
This beautiful ship has revolutionized on-board facilities by offering state-of-the-art amenities such as a rock climbing wall, surf simulator, basketball courts, ice-skating shows as well as Broadway shows! Relax in your luxurious room or splash the day away at any one of the nine pools and whirlpools on offer. Apart from these entertainment options, you can spend a magical date night at their wide range of bars and pubs. At Voyager of the Seas, you can also tease your taste buds at 11 different dining options and rejuvenate at th Vitality at Sea Spa and Fitness Centre.
Here are a few itineraries that you can choose from:
1. Best of Chan May Cruise (4 nights) : Hong Kong, China Cruising Day – Hue Danang /Chan May, Vietnam – Cruising Day – Hong Kong, China.
2. Best of Japan Cruise (9 nights) : Hong Kong, China – Cruising – Okinawa (Naha), Japan – Osaka, Japan – Kobe, Japan – Kochi, Japan – Cruising – Hong Kong, China.
3. Hong Kong to Singapore Cruise (7 nights) : Hong Kong, China – Cruising – Hanoi (Halong Bay), Vietnam – Hue/Danang (Chan May), Vietnam – Nha Trang, Vietnam – Ho Chi Minh (Phu My), Vietnam – Cruising – Singapore.
4. Okinawa and Ishigaki Cruise (5 nights) : Hong Kong, China – Cruising – Okinawa (Naha), Japan – Ishigaki, Japan – Cruising – Hong Kong, China.
The majestic Spectrum of the Seas:
Spectrum of the Seas is a Quantum Ultra Class ship that will take your cruising experience to new heights. It offers unique experiences such as the North Star that will launch you 300 feet high from where you can enjoy stunning views of the ocean. Its Sky Pad is a VR world where you can lose yourself in bungee trampoline. At the same time, you can have a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity of treating yourself to unique juice drinks crafted by robots at the Bionic Bar. Other exceptional facilities include private dining rooms, lounges and a solarium. If you are going on a family trip, you must book their room for family adventures where you can enjoy 3D cinema designed for movie nights and karaoke!
Here are a few itineraries to choose from:
1. Best of Vietnam Cruise (5 nights) : Hong Kong, China – Cruising – Hue Danang, Vietnam, Nha Trang, Vietnam – Cruising – Hong Kong, China.
2. Japan and Philippines Cruise (7 nights) : Hong Kong, China – Cruising – Okinawa (Naha), Japan – Cruising – Solamague, Philippines – Subic Bay, Philippines – Cruising – Hong Kong, China.
3. Best of Chan May Cruise (4 nights) : Hong Kong, China – Cruising Day – Hue Danang /Chan May, Vietnam – Cruising – Hong Kong, China.
4. Best of Okinawa Cruise (4 nights) : Hong Kong, China – Cruising Day – Okinawa, Japan – Cruising – Shanghai, China.
Not convinced? Watch this video to see how mesmerising your cruise experience will be:
Before you book:
Here are a few tips that you must keep in mind for a hassle-free cruising experience:
1. Always book the cruise well in advance because unlike flights, cruises usually get booked more than a year before the date of departure. An early booking period will ensure that you are able to get a room according to your preference. You might even get your booking at a much cheaper price.
2. Don't forget to carefully study the deck plan before you book your room. This will ensure that you make an informed choice while choosing your room. If you are looking for a quiet lair, make sure you book a room away from all entertainment centres such as restaurants and night clubs. The last thing that you need is to be disturbed on your vacation.
3. Ensure that you are thorough with all visa and immunization requirements. You will easily find this information during the time of booking.
4. If you are not aware of your sensitivity to sea-sickness, you must take a room in the middle of the lower deck of the ship. You are least likely to get sea sickness in this spot. Rooms at the front and rear end of the ship experience most turbulence, and hence may be unsuitable for you.
5. All-inclusive packages on ships usually end up being more cost effective, so make your decision wisely.
In and around Hong Kong:
If you're going all the way to Hong Kong, there's no reason why you must not explore this effervescent country. An erstwhile British colony and at present, a financial hub, Hong Kong is a perfect amalgamation of the culture of the east and the modernity of the west. Plan a pre/post cruise trip around Hong Kong and unearth its hidden gems.
Don't forget to attend these festivals
Nothing will introduce you to the customs and culture of Hong Kong like attending its colourful festivals. The Hong Kong Pulse Night Festival and the New Year Countdown that take place between December, January and February are vibrant festivals where you will see streets decked up in themed light-art pieces from local and overseas artists, glittering sky scrapers and festive decorations. Every New Year's Eve, the radiant Victoria Harbour is full of party atmosphere with stunning pyromusical lights up in the sky. Dragon Boat Festival is another exciting event that takes place in May or June. At this festival, you will see a number of dragon boats race across Victoria Harbour.
Enjoy the view from Victoria Peak
The highest peak in Hong Kong Island, Victoria Peak, also known as Mt. Austin offers sweeping views of Hong Kong and Victoria Harbour. This is one of the biggest tourist attractions that you just cannot miss. You can take The Peak tram, a cab or even hike to the view-point. Once at the top, you will fall short of words to describe the panoramic view of the city. You can spend hours soaking up the brilliant view or enjoy a delicious meal of noodles and dim sums at the restaurants located above.
Dragon's Back Hike:
This one's for all adventure seekers who can't do with a vacation that doesn't challenge them physically. This hike offers easy-moderate options and a chance to experience Hong Kong beyond its skyscrapers. This easily-accessible hike will stun you with scenic views of the southwest side of Hong Kong Island. From the top, you will also spot Shek O Beach, where the trek finally ends.
The Big Buddha
This massive bronze Buddha statue also known as Offering of the six Devas is an iconic destination located in Lantau Island. This imposing statue signifies the harmonious relationship between man, nature and faith. To reach the statue, you can take a cable car up to the temple whilst enjoying scenic views of the island below. Reaching the Buddha is another challenge that you must overcome by climbing 230 stairs. However, you'll experience an undeniable positivity, and of course, beguiling views once up there.
So what are you waiting for? Cruise into your next memorable vacation and explore Asia like never before.
In partnership with Discover Hong Kong