WORLD HERITAGE, WILDLIFE AND A WORLD CRUISE

BY: CRUISE DIRECTOR ANDY HEATH

There are as many motivations for embarking on a world cruise as there are travelers who actually do it. But, if you are inspired by iconic destinations and passionate about wildlife, Regent Seven Seas Cruises’ 2023 World Cruise has captured it for me. Since 1972, the United Nations has been identifying, protecting and preserving important natural and man-made sites considered to be of outstanding value to humanity. I am thrilled to see that the 2023 World Cruise itinerary features an astonishing 48 UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Take advantage of this opportunity with Regent Seven Seas Cruises and you will be forever changed.

As a wildlife photography hobbyist, my eyes are always drawn to the potential of viewing wildlife in their natural habitats. If wildlife interests you, I have one word for 2023 World Cruise – Africa. From Madagascar to Mozambique, South Africa, and Namibia, you will find many opportunities to be face-to-face with the Big 5 (lions, leopards, rhinoceroses, elephants, and African buffalo) and many more up close and safely. One of my favorite African destinations on the 2023 World Cruise features both a UNESCO World Heritage Site and an amazing haven for migrating birds.

Walvis Bay on the west coast of Africa is the jumping off point for the Namib Sand Sea – a massive coastal desert of over 7 million acres featuring dunes topping out at over 1,200 feet high.

On the coast of Walvis Bay, flamingos migrate by the tens of thousands. An unexpected bonus is to visit the pink lakes where the Namibians farm salt from the ocean. Algae growing in the lakes turns the water pink, and the flamingos eat the algae which in turn enhances their bright pink coloring.

Be prepared for an unforgettable night in a special World Cruise event “Regent Style” under the cliffs of the Namib Sand Sea.

Ha Long Bay in the Gulf of Tonkin was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1994 and is Seven Seas Mariner’s anchorage to visit Hanoi, Vietnam.

In my first visit, I expected to see the 1,600+ islands of Ha Long Bay in Vietnam by taking a junk tour. But, I was both surprised and thrilled to look through my Cruise Director’s office window and see our ship quietly cruising through a spectacular seascape of limestone pillars. Of course, I encourage you to get out there on a junk for a more intimate exploration (including the caves), but the sail in and sail out of Ha Long Bay is not to be missed.

An optional tour and UNESCO World Heritage Site on the 2023 World Cruise is the unforgettable Machu Picchu in the mountains of Peru. There simply aren’t enough superlatives to describe it. This awesome and remote creation of the Incan Empire is now easily reachable for travelers. Whether your approach finds the site shrouded in fog or sparkling in the sun (and both could happen within a few minutes of the other), Machu Picchu is truly one of those experiences you never forget and will always be grateful to have seen it with your own eyes. For wildlife photographers, keep on the alert for a local llama to hold still in your shot of Machu Picchu.

No matter your motivation, the beautiful Seven Seas Mariner and her fabulous crew of 450 members will make yours a true Regent Seven Seas Cruises’ experience on the 2023 World Cruise… Beyond the Horizon.

For more information, enjoy a video of Cruise Director Andy Heath and his lovely wife, Social Hostess Tammy Heath as they provide firsthand insights into the most interesting features of the 2023 World Cruise itinerary and share charming recounts of past experiences on board.

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