Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines is offering ‘green-fingered’ guests the chance to experience some of the most vibrant, colourful and unique gardens and flower festivals on two exciting cruises in 2015. 880 guest-ship Boudicca will embark on a 14-night ‘Madeira Flower Festival’ cruise, D1508, which departs from Dover on 14th April 2015, followed by an 11-night ‘Floral Britannia’ cruise, D1509, departing from Dover on 28th April 2015.
Nathan Philpot, Sales and Marketing Director for Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines, said:
“These two ‘experiential’ cruises highlight Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines’ commitment to offering guests so much more than just a conventional holiday. We want our guests to have a fantastic time on board and ashore, which is why we always work closely with our destination partners to incorporate a special event, extra scenic cruising or a national celebration.
“We are also very excited to be working with The Duchess of Northumberland on our ‘Floral Britannia’ cruise, so that our guests can visit the intriguing ‘Poison Garden’ at Alnwick Castle, which was created as part of a £40-million investment in the spectacular grounds. This is a wonderful opportunity for Fred. Olsen guests to see and experience something very exclusive.”
Boudicca calls first into Oporto (from Leixoes) in Portugal, where guests can visit one of the many Port cellars or take a leisurely stroll along the famous River Douro.
Next is an overnight stay in colourful Funchal – the capital city of Madeira - where guests will arrive in perfect time to enjoy the annual ‘Flower Festival’. Held every Spring, when the flowers are all at their best, it is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Madeira, filling Funchal with a riot of beautiful colours and beguiling scents. This enchanting festival showcases the Island’s most wonderful gardens and floral displays, as well as playing host to a parade - with vibrant costumes and traditional dance - a flower market and other activities, including the making of flower carpets in the streets and outdoor classical music concerts.
Boudicca will then arrive in Santa Cruz in Tenerife, where guests can visit the famous Secret Garden, home to up to 70 species of the world’s deadliest and most exotic plants. This breathtaking garden also holds many displays that explain the myths, history, places of origin and toxin levels of these exceptional plants.
After calls in Arrecife, on the island of Lanzarote, and Cadiz in Spain, where guests can see the famous orange blossoms or take a tour to the mesmerising city of Seville, Boudicca returns to Dover.
Cruise guests will visit St. Peter Port in Guernsey, known for its cobbled streets and picturesque seafront marina, before stopping at Falmouth in England. Here, guests can take a tour to the Eden Project, one of the UK’s top visitor attractions, with the largest indoor rainforest and where plants and science collide spectacularly, or the Lost Gardens of Heligan, which, in 2008, was granted ‘National Collection Holder’ status by the Plant Heritage for its historic and unique collection of plants and flowers. There are more than 70 veteran Camellias and 350 ancient Rhododendrons.
Boudicca then stops in Milford Haven, in Pembrokeshire, Wales, where guests can take a stroll along Milford Marina, which is the only coastal National Park in Britain.
The vibrant city of Liverpool is next; here, guests can have a day exploring the city’s historical buildings, such as the iconic Pier Head or the Victoria Gallery and Museum, or visit one of the many cool cafés and bars.
Boudicca will then embark on a full day of scenic cruising, taking in Duart Castle, Firth of Lorn, Sound of Mull, Loch Scavaig and the Point of Sleat on Skye.
Guests will then have a chance to explore the quaint town of Kirkwall on the Orkney Islands, before arriving in Invergordon in Scotland, where tours to the impressive and mythical Loch Ness are highly recommended.
Boudicca will then call into in Rosyth in Scotland. Guests can take a tour to the fantastic city of Edinburgh to visit the Royal Botanical Gardens, which is rated one of the top attractions in Scotland and the whole of the UK. These stunning gardens were established in 1670 and cover 75 acres of land.
Final port of call on this floral-themed cruise is the city of Newcastle, where guests will be able to take a very special tour to The Duchess of Northumberland’s ‘Poison Garden’ at Alnwick Castle - the setting for the famous Harry Potter films. Behind the locked gates of the garden are many deadly plants, as well as wonderful tales of myths, legends, science and history.