Taking its already prized river voyages to the next level, Scenic Luxury Cruises & Tours is joining forces with National Geographic for special sailings starting in July 2018.
Departures will explore the Rhine, Danube and Main rivers; the Bordeaux region of France and the Irrawaddy River in Myanmar.
National Geographic River Cruises will combine the best of Scenic’s all-inclusive product with the publication’s legendary know-how. That means a National Geographic expert will accompany each special sailing, educating guests on the destination with enriching insight. Also enhancing their imaging along the way will be a National Geographic photographer onboard European voyages.
Featured on select Bordeaux cruises, for example, will be award-winning travel writer Don George who is an editor at large for “National Geographic Traveler” as well as an expert on National Geographic Expeditions. Similarly, award-winning photographer Stephen Alvarez, (featured in “National Geographic” itself), will be on hand for certain Danube and Bordeaux sailings.
Specific to National Geographic onboard will be lectures, while ashore will be exclusive excursions inspired by the brand. In Bordeaux, guests will be able to ride bicycles through vineyards by Libourne and visit Chateau Belles-Graves or discover prehistoric cave art at Grotte de Pair-non-Pair with a private guide.
Bringing the original magazine to life will be opportunities such as going to the World Heritage-listed fossil site of Grube Messel as featured in the February 2000 issue. Even Europe’s famed Christmas markets will be enhanced by exploring them with a knowledgeable National Geographic expert.
Meanwhile, in Myanmar, special tours extend to meeting with a representative about the Irrawaddy Community Conservation Project and protecting local dolphins. National Geographic grantee Kalyar Platt also oversees a breeding program that guests will learn more about along with endangered Burmese star tortoises at the Lawkananda Wildlife Sanctuary.
Adding to classic Scenic Enrich experiences are new Scenic Freechoice excursions. These fully inclusive tour selections allow passengers to set their ideal pace during each itinerary.
Infilling all the National Geographic adventures are Scenic’s all-inclusive luxuries encompassing airport transfers, tipping and gratuities, selection of always-available beverages, bottled water for excursions, suites with butler service and complimentary mini-bar, room service and Wi-Fi internet.
Showcased routes begin at $3,245 per person for the 8-day Danube Christmas Markets cruise from Nuremberg to Budapest on December 2, 2018. Available earlier in July are two other 8-day itineraries: Rhine Highlights from Basel to Amsterdam starting at $3,895 per person and Gems of the Danube from Budapest to Nuremberg at $4,195.
For a longer trip, the 11-day Beautiful Bordeaux voyage roundtrip from Bordeaux is available in August and September beginning at $6,295 per person, while the 15-day Jewels of Europe one from Budapest to Amsterdam is ready in September and October at $7,395. Alternatively, the 11-day Luxury Irrawaddy circuit heads from Mandalay to Yangon on December 23, 2018, starting at $6,595 per person.
At this time, reduced roundtrip economy airfare can be booked for just $395 per person for 8-day cruises or $295 per person for 11-day or longer cruises.
Looking ahead, 2019 dates have already been scheduled. New for next year will be an 8-day Dutch Sights & Belgium Delights itinerary roundtrip from Amsterdam as well as an 11-day Unforgettable Douro one roundtrip from Porto.