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Tauck Continues to Expand its Small Ship Cruise Portfolio

Tauck has announced details of a new 13-day cruise itinerary highlighting cultural destinations in the UK, France, Spain and Portugal. The company’s new “London, Bordeaux & Iberian Charms” journey will launch with three dates in September and October of 2020, as the company continues its multi-year plan to double the passenger capacity of its small ship cruising portfolio.

The new itinerary begins in London with an included two-night hotel stay at guests’ choice of either the InterContinental London Park Lane or The Langham, London. While in London, Tauck guests will enjoy a full day of guided sightseeing, along with a tour and lunch inside the lavish 16th-century Hampton Court Palace the following day. Guests will then embark the Ponant ship Le Dumont d’Urville in Portsmouth for their itinerary’s centerpiece eight-night cruise. Arriving on the British island of Guernsey the next morning, guests will have a choice of shore excursions including a sightseeing drive across the island, a walking tour of Saint Peter Port, or a cliff-top hike from the coast to Moulin Huet Valley.

Following a day at sea, Le Dumont d’Urville arrives next in France where guests will enjoy walking tours and wine tastings in the classic wine producing towns of Saint Emilion and Bordeaux, including a tour, tasting and dinner at the renowned wine estate Chateau Kirwan. A subsequent port call in Bilbao, Spain includes a choice of afternoon activities, and the following morning, a visit to the city’s famed Guggenheim Museum.

After sailing overnight, guests will arrive in A Coruña, Spain before retracing the route of religious pilgrims along the Camino of St. James en route to the Cathedral of Santiago. Lunch at a restored 18th-century Franciscan convent and free time follow. Guests sail next to Portugal, where a full day exploring Porto and a choice of guided excursions await. After disembarking a final time in Lisbon, guests will be treated to an included two-night hotel stay at either the InterContinental Lisbon or the Four Seasons Hotel Ritz Lisbon, highlighted by a choice of ways to experience the city.

Tauck’s new cruise is priced from $8,990 USD ($11,680 CAD) per person, double occupancy, plus airfare, and included in the cruise fare are all shore excursions and sightseeing, all gratuities, all onboard beer, house wines and house spirits, all onboard meals (and select meals ashore), airport transfers, port charges, luggage handling and more.

Launching later this year, Le Dumont d’Urville is one of Ponant’s six new Explorer Series ships. Each of the 430-foot vessels accommodate just 184 guests, with the ships’ modest size allowing access to smaller harbors and ports where larger ships can’t go. The new Explorer Series ships feature a panoramic main dining room offering French-inspired cuisine, a second, more casual dining venue, plus a spa, fitness center, theater, and three lounges.

Most notable of those lounges is each vessel’s Blue Eye Lounge. Positioned below the waterline, the Blue Eye Lounge features two large, oval windows that provide views of the surrounding waters. Sensitive underwater microphones, meanwhile, capture sounds of local marine life which are converted into vibrations that channel through the lounges’ plush, upholstered “Body Listening” sofas to provide guests with a truly unique multisensory experience.

Ponant’s largest customer, Tauck will feature nine Ponant vessels on 17 different cruise itineraries next year. Those interested in more information can contact their local travel professional, call Tauck at 800 468 2825, or visit the company’s website at www.tauck.com (www.tauck.ca in Canada).

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