At Fred.\ Holidays, our focus is usually on Europe and all the fantastic things that it offers for a variety of different trips. However, we are pleased to share something new and exciting with you that’s a little bit different. Having been named as the UK general sales agency for Victory Cruise Lines, we can now offer a fantastic range of cruises to the USA, Canada and Mexico.
Focusing on the Great Lakes, these itineraries take place aboard elegant small ships that have been perfectly designed to sail inland waterways and along coastal routes. Take a look at the different options available over at our new Victory Cruise Lines website.
And, to whet your appetite and show you what you can expect, here are some fantastic highlights you’ll enjoy when exploring North America’s Great Lakes.
Before your cruise even gets started, you will have the chance to explore one of America’s largest and most famous cities. Situated on the shores of Lake Michigan, you have the option to depart from Chicago, but not before you discover a city dedicated to art, comedy and nature.
Animal lovers will enjoy the chance to visit the Shedd Aquarium and Lincoln Zoo, whilst the peaceful river walk and 606 pedestrian highway showcase some great green spaces. Other major attractions include The Second City theatre, where many comedy greats have cut their teeth, and the Art Institute of Chicago.
This alluring island comes into view as Lake Michigan spills into Lake Huron, creating a beautiful welcome to the latter. Part of the nostalgic charm is due to the fact that there is no traffic and so the best way to get around is via horse and carriage.
As a National Historic Landmark, Mackinac exudes a Victorian ambience, particularly when you reach the Grand Hotel. On your horse-drawn tour, you’ll also see Fort Mackinac, a military complex which shows what life would have been like for the soldiers during the 18th and 19th centuries.
Henry Ford Museum
The name may make you think that this attraction is dedicated to cars, but it’s actually more about the person behind the world’s first commercially viable automobile than the vehicle itself. The museum celebrates American innovation, helping you delve into the minds of ordinary people who created change through sparks of genius and commitment to their plight.
Amongst the most notable exhibits, you’ll find the bus where Rosa Parks made her stand (ironically by sitting down), creating the Civil Rights movement, and the limousine that transported JFK on the day he was assassinated. The museum is located on the outskirts of Detroit.
Duluth is a port city found in the westernmost corner of Lake Superior and the perfect place to see some of the natural scenery on offer in this region. Leif Erikson Park, named in honour of the Viking explorer who discovered North America 500 years before Columbus, is one such place. It's home to a picturesque lakeside walk and the Duluth Rose Garden.
Further up the shoreline is the Hawk Ridge Nature Reserve, the perfect spot to watch raptors swoop down as they make a stop on their way from Arctic breeding grounds every autumn. Kestrels, hawks and even peregrine falcons gather here in large numbers as they naturally alter their course to avoid flying over the lake.
Whilst your ship will transit from Lake Erie into Lake Ontario via the Welland Canal, you will step ashore for a far more exciting excursion. Niagara Falls, one of the world’s most popular tourist attractions, lies close by and you cannot pass through the area without admiring this breathtaking spectacle.
Made of three individual falls that, together, are referred to as Niagara, thousands of gallons of water thunder over the edge every second. You can watch on from the lookout points along Niagara Parkway or get much closer to the action on a Hornblower boat trip. Back on shore, a variety of other attractions give you plenty of choice when it comes to viewing the falls from every possible angle.
If you would like to know more about our Great Lakes cruises, a brand new product for the UK market, call us on 0800 988 3369. You can see the different itinerates available at www.victorycruiselines.co.uk.