Unusual Shore Excursions for Experiential and Interactive Trips

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These shore excursions offer opportunities for outside-the-box activities away from the cruise ship for unusual adventures

As cruisers become more sophisticated, they also look for unusual shore excursions while off the ship – a way to really experience the cultures, surroundings and people. This is where cruise lines have stepped up to the plate once again. Yes, there are traditional tours, but today cruise companies offer a growing number of unique options for untraditional shore excursions.

Shore Excursions for the Epicurious

Limon, Costa Rica offers local flavors on culinary shore excursions. Photo courtesy of Diego Tirira via Flickr

Norwegian Cruise Lines

Take the Cultural Journey & Soul Food Delight cruise with Norwegian Cruise Lines to Puerto Limon, Costa Rica. After a four hour tour of Puerto Limon, indulge in a hands-on cooking class. Discover traditional dancing and calypso music at the House of Culture. The smells of delicacies like plantain tarts and rice and beans waft throughout the streets as local kitchens cook up authentic fare.

Regent Seven Seas Cruises

Epicurean Explorations are chef-led shoreside excursions for those looking to immerse in local culture and flavors. Disembark a Regent Seven Seas Cruise and tour vibrant markets showcasing international ingredients ripe for the picking. Let the chef be your group’s guide as you navigate culinary destinations like Latvia, Spain, Monte Carlo, Belize and other locations.

Holland America Line

On a cruise with Holland America Line, groups can savor culinary shore excursions to many diverse destinations worldwide. In fact, they are the only cruise line to offer Food & Wine tours throughout the Caribbean. Take a voyage to islands where spicy meets refreshing in authentic Caribbean and Creole flavors. Observe traditional rum making techniques at a preserved Jacobean mansion in Barbados. Afterwards, cook a meal with Chef Heidi Smeulders at her Curacao kitchen. Additionally, try Keepin’ It Real for delectable fresh grilled lobster at a quintessential Caribbean beach shack.

Unusual Aquatic Shore Excursions

Shore excursions in Sitka Sound, Alaska. Photo courtesy of the Forest Service Alaska Region, USDA.

Scenic Cruise Voyages

Among the many unusual shore excursions, one stands out among the rest. Groups can take a spectacular underwater journey in a submarine. Yes, a submarine! Scenic Cruise Voyages’ ship, the Scenic Eclipse, comes equipped with its own submarine called Scenic Neptune. This submersible can seat groups up to six people, including the specialized pilot. Delve into the icy cold depths of the Arctic Ocean or explore vibrant sea life in warm waters of the Caribbean.

Holland America

Holland America’s “Dry Suit Snorkel” in Alaska allows guests to learn about the biology of the ocean floor in Sitka Sound. Guests wear their own clothes under the “dry suit,” which provides warmth, buoyancy, safety and comfort. After being picked up from the dock, they head to a changing area and then to Magic Island in Halibut Point Recreation State Park for snorkeling with a certified dive master.

Explore more cruise-related articles and group itineraries by subscribing to the current issue of Leisure Group Travel today.

By Cindy Bertram

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