Virtuoso Traveler 2019 April Tips for Cruising Canada and New England

Tips for Cruising Canada and New England

Virtuoso advisor Crystal Warner (far right) with her family.
Virtuoso advisor Crystal Warner (far right) with her family.
Photo by Crystal Warner

Planning a multigenerational cruise comes with certain challenges, says Virtuoso travel advisor Crystal Warner. One in particular is finding a trip that appeals to a range of tastes, interests, and ages. An easy go-to: Canada and New England, where a mix of striking scenery, fascinating history, and uber-fresh seafood offers something for everyone. “From cliff walks and Gilded Age mansions to lighthouses and lobster shacks,” Warner says, “there’s so much to appreciate.” The Manhattan-based advisor visited with her mother, father, aunt, uncle, and cousin on a ten-day voyage from New York City to Québec City aboard the Crystal Symphony last fall, when Mother Nature displays her dazzling best: “The spectrum of autumn colors made our journey that much more memorable,” she says. Here are some of her highlights.

Symphony for the Senses

Warner notes that the 848-passenger Crystal Symphony is just the right size for exploring the North Atlantic: “It’s small enough to feel special, but with plenty of public spaces and entertainment options.” She and her family appreciated the variety of enrichment choices available, and they all joined a USC School of Cinematic Arts digital filmmaking class to learn how to turn travel photos into movies. The Michelin-inspired dining, however, was the real standout, especially the specialty restaurant Umi Uma, by chef Nobu Matsuhisa. “After her last Crystal cruise, my mom couldn’t stop talking about how amazing the food was,” she says. “Now I know why.”

Great Views

A visit to The Breakers, the Vanderbilts’ 70-room “summer cottage” in Newport, Rhode Island, enchanted Warner: “I felt like I was traveling back in time to a Great Gatsby party.” She was also impressed by Montmorency Falls outside Québec City (“It’s 100 feet higher than Niagara Falls”) and recommends Maine’s Acadia National Park (from Bar Harbor) for a hike, horse-drawn carriage ride, or drive to the top of Cadillac Mountain for the panoramic views. Her advice for multi-gen groups: Book half-day excursions and check the activity level of each, particularly if you’re cruising with older travelers who may have difficulty walking longer distances over cobblestones and uneven terrain.

<em>Crystal Symphony</em> at sea.
Crystal Symphony at sea.
Photo by Crystal Cruises

Something’s Fishy

Warner discovered a cornucopia of ocean treats at each stop: oysters and clams in New York and Massachusetts, lobsters in Maine, and mussels in Nova Scotia. One must: “Check out the lobster-roll food trucks in Peggy’s Cove near Halifax.”

Save the Date

Warner recommends a veranda stateroom on an early-season cruise to catch peak colors and migrating humpbacks in the Bay of Fundy. Balcony accommodations are, however, the first to fill up on these popular voyages, which usually book out
a year in advance, so have your travel advisor reserve well ahead.

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