The top 8 no-fly cruises in 2017 and 2018

Cruise Advice

It's great to jump on a plane and leave behind the rain and cold during the winter months. If only it were that easy though - I write 'jump on a plane' as if that were a straightforward matter, but in these days of heightened security, long queues and a load of hassle are the norm.

So in the summer, why not check out just how special it is to hop into the car, arrive at Southampton or another UK port, step on board a ship and find - hey presto! - you are already on holiday. Here are my top eight options...

Best value

In 2017, Voyages to Antiquity bring their classic ship Aegean Odyssey to the UK for the first time. Take the opportunity to join just 350 fellow guests and explore close to home, travelling to Iceland, the Faroes and the Shetlands, with included shore excursions and a great programme of guest speakers.

Best for living like the Queen

Whilst Hebridean Island Cruises are understandably coy about the achievement, we love to remind you that when she was looking to celebrate her birthday with close family and friends, the Queen chose the intimate and cosy 50 guest Hebridean Princess.

Best for the frozen North

If Greenland is on your list, but you don't fancy the complicated journey, and limited infrastructure once you get there, Oceania has a 20-day Greenland cruise in summer 2017 on board Nautica, including Iceland and the Faroe Islands, for a great adventure in comfortable style.

Best new ship

Regent's newest addition to the fleet, Seven Seas Explorer, will be visiting in summer 2017. To experience the wonderful accommodation and dining programme, as well as enjoying Regent's all-inclusive style, pick a Round Britain cruise in June or September for the ultimate in indulgent exploration.

Best for choice

Look to UK companies for regular departures from British ports close to home or further afield. To us your best option to combine quality with a smaller ship with an excellent variety of itineraries is Saga Cruises' programme on board Saga Sapphire and Saga Pearl II - and stand by for the launch of a new Saga ship in 2019.

Best for food

The lovely Crystal Serenity will operate an appealing North Cape cruise from Tilbury in July 2018. Whilst on board you can enjoy Crystal's modern epicurean artistry in the main restaurant, alongside the acclaimed Silk Road by Nobu Matsuhisa, the excellent northern Italian Prego restaurant, and the fantastic 'street food inspired' Tastes.

Best suite

Pick the Grand Wintergarden Suite on Seabourn Quest's Round Britain 'Jewels of the National Trust' cruise in August 2017, and you can enjoy over 1000 square feet of space featuring large windows with ocean views, dining for six, a bathroom with whirlpool bathtub, glass enclosed solarium with tub and day bed, pantry with wet bar and so much more.

Best expedition

How about an expedition cruise, landing by zodiac on deserted beaches, seeking out wildlife and enjoying stimulating lectures and seminars with outstanding naturalists and experts on board? Did you know that such a thing exists to explore some of the remotest outposts of the British Isles? Cruise from Portsmouth to Leith on Silver Explorer in June 2017.

Edwina Lonsdale
Meet the author

Edwina Lonsdale is Managing Director and, together with husband Matthew, owner of Mundy Cruising.

More about Edwina

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