The Shipping News: SeaDream sets sail for the Mediterranean on a wine cruise

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SeaDream will call in at Italy’s famous Portofino during its Mediterranean cruise. Photo: Supplied SeaDream will call in at Italy’s famous Portofino during its Mediterranean cruise. Photo: Supplied

Ecruising is heading down the Nile as part of a 16-night adventure. Photo: Bertrand Rieger

SeaDream will call in at Italy’s famous Portofino during its Mediterranean cruise. Photo: Supplied

SeaDream will call in at Italy’s famous Portofino during its Mediterranean cruise. Photo: Supplied

Wine route

SeaDream Yacht Club is charting an impressive swath�0�2of the Mediterranean coast this October, with ports of call at Civitavecchia (Rome), Ercole and Portofino in Italy, Monte Carlo, St Tropez and Sanary-sur-Mer in France, and finishing in Spain with visits to Barcelona, Valencia and Malaga. The nine-day sailing is one of SeaDream’s popular ‘Wine Voyages’ that include a number of activities led by wine experts and winemakers, including complimentary on-board wine tastings. There are also optional visits to wineries in premium wine regions, and an optional Winemaker Dinner.

Pho

Small ship cruise expert AdventureSmith Explorations is mostly associated with cruises in the Americas, but with three new vessels (in addition to an existing vessel) and four new itineraries in New Zealand, it seems the company is expanding its horizons. The ships carry between 16 and 72 passengers and are purpose-built for cruising in New Zealand; they can access everything from the remote wilderness of the Fiordlands (including Doubtful Sound, accessible only to small ships) to the tranquil Bay of Islands, where an eight-day cruise gives passengers the chance to kayak and visit vineyards.

See adventuresmithexplorati

Lindblad Expeditions has rolled out its inaugural 2016 European program aboard National Geographic Orion, with 11 one-week itineraries between April and September for a ship that, for some time, has been cruising Australian and Pacific waters. Next year the Orion makes maiden voyages to Portugal, Spain, France, Britain, Ireland, Holland, Belgium, the Baltic republics and Scandinavia, and promises more active, insightful experiences in these perennially popular destinations. On-board experts will cover fields such as ancient and modern history, political science, art, viniculture, photography and music, and active options will include hiking, biking and kayaking.

Phone 1300 361 012. See expe

Ecruising has a new cruise-tour in Egypt on a 16-night itinerary that includes a Nile cruise. Departing Australia on�0�2November 7, guests begin the journey with three nights in Dubai before flying to Cairo for three days’ exploration of the city’s highlights, such as the Pyramids and Egyptian Museum. Guests then fly to Luxor for three nights before boarding Sun Boat IV for a four-night cruise along the Nile to Aswan with daily sightseeing at monuments along the way. The cruise finishes at Aswan with a three-night stay at the Sofitel Legend Old Cataract Hotel.

Phone 1300 369 848. See ecruising.travel. Room service

Uniworld has announced the expansion of its in-suite butler service throughout its European fleet. Guests staying in suites on board Uniworld’s ships will find their every need attended to by butlers trained at England’s esteemed Ivor Spencer Butler School. That’s just the start of the luxuries in the river-cruise line’s suites, however, which also feature handcrafted beds, a choice of pillows, bathrooms lined in Italian marble and Hermès and L’Occitane bath and body products. In-suite amenities include laundry and shoeshine service, breakfast, a Nespresso coffee machine and personalised exercise training and wellness services.