A Grand Tradition

Posted on Tuesday, August 2, 2011 |
Before there were airplanes flying to all destinations, there were great liners which took people across the oceans. My mother immigrated from the UK to New Zealand by boat 50 years ago, as it was the way that people traveled. There was steady traffic of great ships across the Atlantic from Southampton to New York as people went back and forth between Britain and the United States.

One of the most famous of these ships is undoubtedly the White Star Line's Titanic, a ship that holds a mysterious allure and fascination for many people. Billed as unsinkable, it sank halfway across the Atlantic and stories of the grand ship and her passengers are still told today. Molly Brown, who rowed a lifeboat to safety, Captain Edward J Smith who did the honourable thing and went down with his ship, Mrs Straus who refused to board a lifeboat because her husband was not allowed to. These stories, as well as the tales of the glamour of life aboard the titanic before the fateful collision, enthrall us.

Now, we hop on a plane and can be almost anywhere within a day or two at the very most. The crossing of the Atlantic has become almost redundant, but the prestige of ocean liners has remained in our imaginations. The Transatlantic Crossing is a tradition, an opportunity to travel without hurry but with glamour and luxury.

Queen Mary 2 by Paul Morris Flickr Creative Commons

Many cruise lines offer transatlantic crossings as repositioning- to move the ship from one continent to another as the seasons change. However, Cunard does crossings in style- as they were done in the era of the ocean liners. The Queen Mary 2, Cunard's flagship, launched in 2004 and christened by the Queen of England herself, is classically styled with her black, red and white paint job and remnants of the class system shown in her dining structure. She is built primarily as an ocean liner rather than a cruise ship, sturdier and faster than most contemporary ships. Passengers on crossings can take as much luggage as they like, even their pets.

Although a transatlantic crossing does not offer the delights of stopping somewhere new every day or two, it allows passengers to benefit fully from what the ship has to offer. Most will testify that 6 days at sea is not boring, in fact it goes all too fast! And when you arrive there is the excitement of having made a true sea voyage.

Cunard provides no end of glitz and glamour. Formal (black tie) dinners take place several times a week, with high standards of dress every night whilst at sea. There is ballroom dancing in the evenings. During the day, there are no end of things to do- from your expected favourites such as pools and gyms, to lectures on a range of topics and even an onboard planetarium!

This type of cruise is not everyone's cup of tea- for those who love sun, sand, shorts and flip-flops, it is not recommended. If you would like to recapture the glamour of the era of the great ocean liners like Titanic (minus the sinking!) and voyage in style and stress-free, then a crossing on a Cunard ship is certainly right for you.

For crossings with Cunard or other lines, check out http://.cruisesalefinder.co.uk!

Author: Ryan Posa+

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