Want to island hop around French Polynesia, visit Africa’s incredible cities, and cruise through Asia without ever switching hotels, boarding a flight, or repacking your bags? An around-the-world cruise provides the ultimate itinerary, packed with exciting international destinations (some even visit hard-to-reach destinations like Easter Island and Antarctica), and luxury cruise lines provide comfortable accommodations, speciality restaurants, and plenty to do on and off the ship. By Elizabeth Rhodes
There are two main things you need before booking a world cruise: plenty of time and some spare cash. Prices range from around USD 20,000 (INR 14,85,392) to upwards of USD 100,000 (INR 74,26,960) per person, and all our top picks are more than 100 days (one even lasts nearly half the year, at a total of 180 days), so they’re ideal for retired travellers looking for their next big adventure. Pack wisely for a range of destinations and climates, and get ready for the journey of a lifetime, filled with postcard-perfect destinations and new friends (because you’re bound to meet a travel buddy or two after 100-plus days on a ship). If an around-the-world cruise is at the top of your travel list, you’ll want to book sooner rather than later — these journeys frequently sell out because many cruise lines only offer a limited number of sailings.
Here are 10 of the best around-the-world cruises you can take in 2023 and 2024.
Viking Ocean Cruises
See 28 countries on the 138-day Viking World Cruise from Fort Lauderdale to London. After departing from Florida, the Viking Neptune will sail the Gulf of Mexico and the Caribbean Sea, stopping in sunny destinations before crossing the Panama Canal to reach the Pacific. From there, the ship will visit destinations in Mexico and the United States, continuing on to Hawaii, French Polynesia, New Zealand, and Australia. Indonesia, Vietnam, Thailand, Myanmar, and India are among the ports in Asia, then it’s on to the Middle East before travelling to Europe, where final destinations include Italy, Spain, and Portugal en route to London. Fares start at USD 59,995 (INR 44,55,804) with dates still available in 2023.
Regent Seven Seas Cruises
Sail around the world in 132 nights aboard the Seven Seas Mariner on a round-trip journey from Miami. You’ll spend the days at sea enjoying the luxury ship’s amenities, including the spa and several restaurants and lounges, between stops in destinations like Costa Rica, Mexico, Hawaii, Tahiti, Bora Bora, Fiji, New Zealand, Australia, Indonesia, Singapore, India, UAE, Israel, and Italy, among others. Fares start at USD 76,999 (INR 57,18,684) for the 2024 sailing.
Cruise aboard the Queen Victoria on this 105-night round-trip journey departing from Hamburg, Germany. From Germany, the ship will sail to Southampton, England, and then travel on to New York City before reaching the Caribbean and sailing the Panama Canal. Stops in Mexico, San Francisco, and Hawaii come next, and later ports include Samoa, New Zealand, Australia, the Philippines, Sri Lanka, Dubai, Egypt, Portugal, and more before arriving back in Germany. Fares start at USD 21,699 (INR 16,11,576) for this 2023 sailing.
See the world in 105 nights on this world cruise on the Crystal Serenity from Miami to Rome. The all-inclusive cruise boasts “six-star service,” beautiful suites, and delicious meals at several eateries on board. Cruise highlights include crossing the Panama Canal, seeing the turquoise waters of French Polynesia, cruising the Milford Sound in New Zealand, visiting Komodo National Park in Indonesia, seeing Petra in Jordan, and more. Fares start at USD 37,284 (INR 27,69,067) for this 2024 sailing.
Enjoy 133 days on Silversea’s Silver Shadow with this round-trip sailing from San Francisco. During that time, the ship will visit 65 ports in 14 countries, including Fiji, New Zealand, Australia, Indonesia, Singapore, Malaysia, Vietnam, China, Japan, Russia, and Canada. Fares start at USD 83,000 (INR 61,64,376) for this 2024 sailing.
Climb aboard the Seabourn Sojourn for a 140-day world cruise from Miami to Barcelona, visiting 61 ports in 32 countries. The cruise will begin in the USA, then stop in Central and South America, followed by a pause in famed Easter Island. Then, it’s on to French Polynesia, the Cook Islands, Fiji, and more before stopping in Papua New Guinea and Australia. After Indonesia and the Seychelles, the cruise will go around Africa, hitting destinations like Kenya, Tanzania, South Africa, Namibia, Gambia, and more before ending in Spain. Fares start at USD 66,299 (INR 49,24,000) for this 2023 sailing.
If those aren’t long enough, why not go for this 180-day round-trip cruise from San Francisco aboard the Insignia. With a cruise this long, it’s no surprise that guests cover a lot of ground (or, more accurately, ocean) to see some of the world’s most impressive sights. Highlights include stops for Machu Picchu and the Nazca Lines in Peru, cruising along Antarctica, and hitting major cities like Rio de Janeiro, Buenos Aires, Cape Town, Dubai, Mumbai, Bangkok, Hong Kong, Beijing, Tokyo, and many more. Fares start at USD 42,599 (INR 31,63,810) for the 2023 sailing.
The MSC Magnifica will take guests to 43 destinations on this 117-day cruise starting and ending in Genoa. Countries visited during this journey include Argentina, Chile, Peru, New Zealand, Australia, Papua New Guinea, Indonesia, Malaysia, Sri Lanka, India, and Jordan. When you’re not exploring each port, you can relax in the swimming pools and hot tubs, visit the many restaurants, bars, and lounges, or go to the spa. For more details, visit the MSC website.
This round-trip cruise from Los Angeles on the Island Princess will visit 47 ports in beautiful places like New Zealand, Australia, Bali, Sri Lanka, UAE, Egypt, Greece, Italy, Spain, Morocco, Bermuda, Mexico, and more. Fares for this 2024 sailing start at USD 20,449 (INR 15,18,739).
Holland America Line
Explore the world on this 128-day round-trip journey from Fort Lauderdale on the Zuiderdam. This cruise’s itinerary includes a trip down the Amazon River, stops in the Caribbean, a Panama Canal crossing, and stops in cities like Honolulu, Tokyo, Shanghai, Singapore, Abu Dhabi, and Istanbul, and more. Fares start at USD 23,799 (INR 17,67,542) for this 2024 cruise.