Tauck Unveils 2016 Collection of Small Ship Ocean Cruises

13-Day “Treasures of Southeast Asia” Added to 2016 Portfolio of Cruises

NORWALK, CT (April 27, 2015)  Tauck has unveiled its 2016 collection of small ship ocean cruises, and next year the Connecticut-based company will offer 15 cruises aboard nine ships in Northern Europe, the Mediterranean, Asia, Australia, Alaska, Antarctica and Latin America.  Tauck is now taking bookings on all 2016 cruises, departure dates and prices are posted on the company’s website (tauck.com), and a new four-color, 84-page brochure highlighting the cruises is now mailing to Tauck travel agents and consumers.

Added to Tauck’s portfolio for 2016 is the 13-day “Treasures of Southeast Asia” itinerary, which begins with an included two-night hotel stay and guided sightseeing in Hong Kong, where guests will enjoy stunning views from Victoria Peak and tour Stanley Market and the Hong Kong Museum of History.  A nine-night cruise along the South China Sea aboard the small ship L’Austral follows, with ports of call including Hanoi,  Ha Long Bay, Da Nang, Chan May and Ho Chi Minh City (formerly Saigon). 

Along the way, guests will tour the 11th-century Temple of Literature and enjoy lunch at the Press Club in Hanoi, cruise Ha Long Bay and tour Hoi An and Hue (all UNESCO World Heritage Sites), and sail up the Saigon River to Ho Chi Minh City.  There guests will enjoy an overnight stay at the Sheraton Saigon Hotel & Towers, tour the city, and have a choice of included excursions to visit either the Mekong Delta or the extensive tunnel complex at Cu Chi, used during the Vietnam War to shelter and support Viet Cong forces.  Tauck will offer three departures of “Treasures of Southeast Asia” in October and November, 2016, and the itinerary is priced from $8,990 per person, double occupancy, plus airfare.

A second Tauck itinerary, “Cruising Down Under” (from $12,340 per person, double occupancy, plus airfare) has been enhanced for 2016, and now pairs a seven-night, land-based exploration of Australia with a nine-night New Zealand cruise aboard Le Soleal.  The itinerary concludes with an included two-night hotel stay in Auckland along with guided sightseeing in and around the city.  The newly revised itinerary replaces three days at sea with a four-hour flight from Australia to New Zealand, and now features a more comprehensive experience in New Zealand with visits added to Queenstown, Dunedin, Akaroa and Napier.  Tauck was also able to add an additional night’s stay in Melbourne, Australia while reducing the itinerary’s duration from 21 days to 19.  Tauck will operate three departures of “Cruising Down Under” next year, all in January.

The announcement of Tauck’s 2016 plans comes as the company is enjoying double-digit growth in its small ship cruises this year, and that success reflects Tauck’s unique approach to cruising, said company CEO Dan Mahar.  “Our focus is always on revealing each destination and each port of call in an enriching, authentic way, highlighted by access to people, places and experiences our guests can only enjoy with Tauck,” said Mahar.  “We’ve been destination experts for 90 years, and we match our signature land experiences with the ease and convenience of sailing aboard the most intimate and stylish small ships available.”

Mahar pointed to Tauck’s Earth Journeys partnership with the nature documentary filmmakers at BBC Earth as just one way the company delivers exclusive content to its guests.  During each Earth Journeys cruise, Tauck guests view short films produced by BBC Earth that provide insights into the places and the flora and fauna they’ll be seeing, helping those guests to later enjoy a deeper and richer understanding of what they’re experiencing. 

Tauck also enhances their guests’ experience by using some of the same technologies employed by BBC Earth filmmakers.  For example, guests traveling in the Galapagos Islands might use a thermal-imaging camera to watch marine iguanas’ body temperatures rise, as the lizards bask in the sun after feeding in the ocean.  Likewise, Tauck guests might employ a long-distance directional microphone to listen-in on a chatty penguin rookery in Antarctica. 

In all, Tauck has teamed with BBC Earth on five Earth Journeys itineraries including “Antarctica,” “The Panama Canal & Costa Rica,” “Peru & the Galapagos Islands,” “Cruising the Galapagos Islands” and “Galapagos: Wildlife Wonderland.”  Tauck also includes unique, signature experiences on its other cruises elsewhere in the world, from an exclusive, after-hours tour of the Vatican Museums and Sistine Chapel in Vatican City,  to dinner at a private, colonial-era home in Lima, Peru, to a guided walk across the Arctic Circle plus a visit to a family farm in Iceland.

Another indication of Tauck’s small ship cruising success is the recent selection of the company’s “Cruising the Land of the Rising Sun” itinerary for inclusion in National Geographic Traveler magazine’s annual “50 Tours of a Lifetime” feature.  Celebrating “the world’s greatest guided trips,” the feature in the magazine’s May issue notes that Tauck’s 14-day cruise itinerary “packs in cultural excursions, from a visit to Naoshima island – known for its contemporary art museums, two designed by Osaka-born architect Tadao Ando – to a look at how shoju, sake’s stronger cousin, is made, at a distillery in Kagoshima.”

Those interested in more information can contact their local travel professional, call Tauck at 800 468 2825, or visit the company’s website at www.tauck.com.

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