Gary Bembridge’s Guide to Expedition Cruising

Author: [email protected]

Published on:

Updated on:

From the most adventurous itineraries to what to pack, Gary Bembridge presents his top tops for those looking to go on an epic expedition cruise

As an avid cruiser and vlogger, Gary Bembridge loves to share his epic cruise travels to far-flung destinations with his followers. We catch up with him in between voyages to learn his top tips for going on a once-in-a-lifetime expedition cruise…

What’s been your most epic expedition cruise?

Antarctica by far. I had high expectations before I went, but it was even more remarkable than I’d imagined. Every day the scenery gets grander and wilder as you head further south. The wildlife is spectacular and we saw whales almost every day. So many people call it a trip of a lifetime and it really is. I’ve booked to go back next year for twice as long.

Favourite expedition ship you’ve been on…

Silversea’s Silver Explorer. This was the first proper expedition ship I went on and it was to the Arctic. It holds fewer than 150 guests and has almost the same number of crew. I liked the size, service and expertise of the team. It holds a special place in my heart as it was my first proper expedition cruise.

Best luxury expedition cruise ship….

I think those coming into service over the coming year. Silversea, Seabourn, Crystal and Scenic are all taking expedition and luxury up a notch.

What are your five suitcase essentials?

Passport. Credit card. Right clothes for dress code. Personalised First Aid kit (including tooth repair kit and seasickness remedy). Chargers and right adapters.

Gary Bembridge, expedition cruise
Gary Bembridge on an Iceland cruise aboard Saga Sapphire

What’s your best piece of advice for those going on a cruise for the first time?

Work with a cruise agent to make sure you go on the right line and choose the right cabin to suit your taste and budget.

Where’s on your expedition cruise bucket list?

Galapagos and circumnavigation of South America. I’ve already ticked off Artic, Antarctica and Panama Canal, so these are next on my bucket list.

Dream cruise…

A round-the-world cruise. I have done 10 weeks on one and want to do the full thing. Lots of time to relax and explore.

Alaska dog sledding
Dog sledding in Alaska is a must, argues Gary Bembridge

What does a cruise holiday mean to you?

Working often! I mostly go on cruises to make videos for my YouTube channel and so even when I am going with my husband on holiday I’m still hard at work.

Your go-to cruise line…

Personally, I prefer smaller ships that go to more unusual places, but if travelling with my husband we usually go for one of the lines which has larger ships with lots of facilities on board. He especially loves Cunard for the service, food, dressing up and the casino.

Best shore excursions you’ve been on…

Dog sledding on a Glacier in Alaska.

Where are you cruising to this year?

I cruise once a month on average so lots of places! This year I’ll be going to Iceland, Cuba, Mediterranean, France, Loire Canal and Tahiti.

Ship you’re most excited about going on…

Any expedition ship.

What do you envisage to be the future of expedition cruising?

Cruise ships will have to be much more environmentally-friendly. This trend has started, but as more people want to go on expeditions, ships need to be able to protect the fragile ecology already affected by the impacts of climate change.

One thing you can only do on a cruise…

Visit places like Antarctica.