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Best of Norway & Scotland - Oslo to London

5th August 2023 FOR 28 NIGHTS | Riviera

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Despite the fact that most of the nation is spread across Asia, the vast majority of Russia’s town and cities, in which most of the population reside, are located within Eastern Europe.

Russia’s most famous port is the magnificent city of St Petersburg, famous for its distinctive and colourful architecture as well as its illustrious history and culture, displayed proudly throughout the city. While St Petersburg is Russia’s most well-known port and home to a large population, many of the main luxury cruise lines operate expedition cruises to the nation’s more remote and cut-off destinations, such as Petropavlovsk, Provideniya, Shumshu and Makanrushi Island amongst several others.

The ports of Russia offer both a fantastic insight into the country’s rich culture and heritage as well as plenty of breathtaking areas of natural beauty to discover and dramatic landscapes to observe. See the sights of Mother Russia for yourself on a luxury cruise to this renowned nation.

Russia’s vast size means that there are many ways to see it, and different cruises can offer you a variety of ways to experience the country. Call our Cruise Concierge team for our best cruises in Russia, and they can advise you on the options available – like Baltic cruises to St Petersburg in western Russia, or eastern expeditions to some of the country’s wildest and most secluded reaches.

There's a fantastic range of luxury cruises to Russia available to book with the finest luxury cruise lines at SixStarCruises.co.uk, taking in some of this historic nation's most iconic ports. Just take a look at what's on offer right now and book your place on-board by calling our expert Cruise Concierge team, on-hand to help you find your perfect six-star voyages for an amazing price.

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itinerary

1

Oslo07:00 - 18:00

Oslo is the capital of Norway and is also its largest city, situated at the head of Oslo Fjord and surrounded by hills and forests. Home to some 50 museums and full of galleries, cafés, a sculpture park and the Royal Palace, this vibrant city with its handsome 19th-century buildings and wide streets has much to offer. Its history dates back 1,000 years, and includes a rich seafaring heritage that ranges from the Viking era to Thor Heyerdahl’s Kon Tiki expedition. Discover more about this exciting city on our varied selection of excursions.

05 Aug 2023

2

Kristiansand07:00 - 17:00

Nicknamed "Sommerbyen" ("Summer City"), Norway's fifth-largest city has 78,000 inhabitants. Norwegians come here for its sun-soaked beaches and beautiful harbor. Kristiansand has also become known internationally for the outdoor Quart Festival, which hosts local and international rock bands every July. According to legend, in 1641 King Christian IV marked the four corners of Kristiansand with his walking stick, and within that framework the grid of wide streets was laid down. The center of town, called the Kvadraturen, still retains the grid, even after numerous fires. In the northeast corner is Posebyen, one of northern Europe's largest collections of low, connected wooden house settlements, and there's a market here every Saturday in summer. Kristiansand's Fisketorvet (fish market) is near the south corner of the town's grid, right on the sea.

06 Aug 2023

3

Haugesund08:00 - 17:00

Located in the southwest of Norway where the fjords flow out into the North Sea, Haugesund is surrounded by the blue ice Folgefonna glacier in the north and the impressive mountain formation of Preikestolen in the south. Learn why this charming town is known as the Homeland of the Viking Kings at Avaldsnes’ Viking settlement, where you can see a reconstructed Viking farm and learn how the Vikings lived. Discover majestic fjords, cascading waterfalls, stunning glaciers, imposing mountains, and idyllic islands and lighthouses. The best way to get an insider’s look at Haugesund is to follow the locals and go for an invigorating hike at Preikestolen, also known as the Pulpit Rock or Preacher’s Rock, one of the most popular hiking trips in the region.

07 Aug 2023

4

Ålesund08:00 - 18:00

The coastal town of Ålesund is the commercial capital of the Møre og Romsdal district. But more important, it is noted for its characteristic Jugendstil (Art Nouveau) buildings, which some claim make Ålesund one of the most beautiful towns in Norway. This Art Nouveau style emerged when the town was completely rebuilt after a devastating fire in 1904 destroyed nearly 800 buildings and left 10,000 residents homeless. It is said that the fire started by a tipped oil lamp. Rebuilding was carried out with the help of many young, foreign architects who added their own flourishes to the architectural blend of German Jugendstil and Viking roots. Today, narrow streets are crammed with buildings topped with turrets, spires and gables that bear decorations of dragonheads and curlicues. As one of the few remaining Art Nouveau towns in the world, in 1998 Ålesund was awarded the coveted Houens National Memorial Prize for the preservation of its unique architecture.

08 Aug 2023

5

Norwegian Sea Cruising

09 Aug 2023

6

Hammerfest09:00 - 21:00

More than 600 miles north of the Arctic Circle, the world's northernmost town is also one of the most widely visited and oldest places in northern Norway. "Hammerfest" means "mooring place" and refers to the natural harbor (remarkably free of ice year-round thanks to the Gulf Stream) that is formed by the crags in the mountain. Hammerfest is the gateway to the Barents Sea and the Arctic Ocean, a jumping-off point for Arctic expeditions. Once a hunting town, Hammerfest's town emblem features the polar bear. In 1891 the residents of Hammerfest, tired of the months of darkness that winter always brought, decided to brighten their nights: they purchased a generator from Thomas Edison, and Hammerfest thus ecame the first city in Europe to have electric street lamps. In addition to two museums, there are several shops within Hammerfest's small city center. There is also a market selling souvenirs and other goods outside the town hall.

10 Aug 2023

7

Honningsvåg07:00 - 17:00

Searching in 1553 for a northeast passage to India, British navigator Richard Chancellor came upon a crag 307 yards above the Barents Sea. He named the jut of rock North Cape, or Nordkapp. Today Europe's northernmost point is a rite-of-passage journey for nearly all Scandinavians and many others. Most cruise passengers visit Nordkapp from Honningsvåg, a fishing village on Magerøya Island. The journey from Honningsvåg to Nordkapp covers about 35 km (22 miles) across a landscape characterized by rocky tundra and grazing reindeer, which are rounded up each spring by Sami herdsmen in boats. The herdsmen herd the reindeer across a mile-wide channel from their winter home on the mainland. Honningvåg's northerly location makes for long, dark winter nights and perpetually sun-filled summer days. The village serves as the gateway to Arctic exploration and the beautiful Nordkapp Plateau, a destination that calls to all visitors of this region. Most of those who journey to Nordkapp (North Cape), the northernmost tip of Europe, are in it for a taste of this unique, otherworldly, rugged yet delicate landscape. You'll see an incredible treeless tundra, with crumbling mountains and sparse dwarf plants. The subarctic environment is very vulnerable, so don't disturb the plants. Walk only on marked trails and don't remove stones, leave car marks, or make campfires. Because the roads are closed in winter, the only access is from the tiny fishing village of Skarsvåg via Sno-Cat, a thump-and-bump ride that's as unforgettable as the desolate view.

11 Aug 2023

8

Murmansk10:00 - 21:00

The last city founded by the Russian Empire, Murmansk has long been an important ice-free naval and commercial shipping port. The smoke stacks, port cranes, and Soviet-era architecture are unappealing, but the natural surroundings draw visitors to ski and snowmobile in winter, and in summer to fish the thousands of lakes and rivers, and party away the long, light nights.

12 Aug 2023

9

White Sea Cruising

13 Aug 2023

10

Archangel07:00 - 17:00

A regional center of northwestern Russia, Archangel was founded in the 16th century near Archangel Michael Monastery. There are several interesting museums to visit, including the popular Natural History Museum and the Gallery of Arts. Stroll along the banks of the Northern Dvina and see the many monuments to history from the Soviet era to Peter the Great. Admire the Russian North’s unique wooden architecture at Malye Korely, one of Europe’s largest open-air museums.

14 Aug 2023

11

Barents Sea Cruising

15 Aug 2023

12

Tromsø10:00 - 18:00

With its centre located on the island of Tromsø, the municipality of Tromsø is more than five times the size of Norway’s capital, Oslo, and is the world’s northernmost university city. Lying 200 miles inside the Arctic Circle, it is known as the 'Gateway to the Arctic' because it was used as a starting point for hunters looking for Arctic foxes, polar bears and seals. In the 19th century it was a base for explorers on Arctic expeditions – a history that is remembered in the city’s Polar Museum, which you can visit on an excursion. Also commemorated in the area is the history of Norway’s indigenous people, the Sami. Visitors can learn about the traditions, heritage and modern preservation of the Sami culture at the Tromsø Museum. Nowadays, Tromsø is a charming mix of old and new, with wooden buildings sitting alongside contemporary architecture such as the impressive glacier-like Arctic Cathedral, which features one of the largest stained glass windows in Europe. Looking down on the city is Mount Storsteinen, and a cable car runs to the top, giving wonderful views over the surrounding countryside of forested peaks and reindeer pastures.

16 Aug 2023

13

Leknes07:00 - 17:00

Blessed with some of the most spectacular scenery in Norway (and goodness only know that this is land blessed with rolling hills, soaring peaks, valleys, tranquil fjords and white sandy beaches, so the competition is high!), Leknes is what Norway is meant to be. Pretty red houses lay dotted on the green covered hills, and the midnight sun is rises above the horizon from 26th May to 17th July, (while in winter the sun does not rise from 9th December to 4th January). Part of the stunning Lofoten islands, this pretty port offers much in the way of recreation, although understandably most of this is outdoor based. Take a boat ride around the archipelago, try your hand at some deep sea fishing, or simply stroll thought the city centre, perhaps rent a bicycle and discover the hinterland at your own pace. Bikes can be easily rented and note that hybrid and electric bikes are a great option for those who might be a bit out of practice with their pedal power. Gastronomes with a sweet tooth will be rewarded with one simple pleasure: a fresh-from-the-oven skillingsbolle – or big, fluffy cinnamon rolls, fit for indulging in if all the fresh air has made you hungry! Look out for the quirky coffee shops, settle down for some Norwegian kos, say takk for maten and enjoy!

17 Aug 2023

14

Norwegian Sea Cruising

18 Aug 2023

15

Tórshavn07:00 - 17:00

Stroll through this picturesque fishing town and admire the views from the headland. Take a drive around this stunning, craggy island of majestic waterfalls, beautiful fjords, farms, villages, enigmatic sea stacks and panoramic views of the neighboring islands. Or visit an ancient Viking settlement in a valley of lakes.

19 Aug 2023

16

Kirkwall, Orkney Islands08:00 - 17:00

In bustling Kirkwall, the main town on Orkney, there's plenty to see in the narrow, winding streets extending from the harbor. The cathedral and some museums are highlights.

20 Aug 2023

17

Newhaven/Edinburgh08:00 - 19:00

Newhaven is a channel ferry port in East Sussex in England, with regular passenger services to Dieppe. It lies at the mouth of the River Ouse, which has historically migrated westward from Seaford, one of the Cinque Ports.

21 Aug 2023

18

North Sea Cruising

22 Aug 2023

19

Portsmouth06:00 - 21:00

Portsmouth is one of the most densely populated cities in Southern England, and is unusual as most of its built-up area occupies Portsea Island, linked to the mainland by road and rail bridges. Although there is a Roman fort at nearby Portchester, occupied later by the Saxons and Normans, there was no settlement on the site of Portsmouth at the time of the 1086 Domesday Book. The town developed in medieval times and received its first charter in 1194 from King Richard I; soon afterwards it became a major naval base. It has the world’s oldest dry dock, and is home to several famous ships, including HMS Victory, HMS Warrior and the Mary Rose, raised from the Solent in 1982. Portsmouth remains an important naval base and is home to a large proportion of the British service fleet. The waterfront area is now dominated by the Spinnaker Tower, 560 feet high, the United Kingdom’s tallest building outside London. Other things to see in the city include the house where Charles Dickens was born, and the City Museum, which contains a permanent exhibition devoted to another famous writer, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, who lived in the town.

23 Aug 2023

20

North Sea Cruising

24 Aug 2023

21

Newcastle upon Tyne08:00 - 18:00

An urban city mixing culture, sophistication and heritage, Newcatle-upon-Tyne offers a range of activities and attractions. With more theatres per person than anywhere else in the UK, Newcastle has a wide range of arts and cultural attractions for visitors to enjoy, from the Theatre Royal – regional home to the Royal Shakespeare Company – to the famous Angel of the North.

25 Aug 2023

22

Dundee09:00 - 21:00

Dundee is a coastal city on the Firth of Tay estuary in eastern Scotland. Its regenerated waterfront has 2 nautical museums: RRS Discovery, Captain Scott’s Antarctic expedition ship, and 19th-century warship, HM Frigate Unicorn. North of the water, Verdant Works is a museum celebrating the city’s jute-manufacturing heritage. The McManus: Dundee’s Art Gallery & Museum displays art and archaeological finds.

26 Aug 2023

23

Lerwick, Shetland Islands11:00 - 19:00

Founded by Dutch fishermen in the 17th century, Lerwick today is a busy town and administrative center. Handsome stone buildings—known as lodberries—line the harbor; they provided loading bays for goods, some of them illegal. The town's twisting flagstone lanes and harbor once heaved with activity, and Lerwick is still an active port today. This is also where most visitors to Shetland dock, spilling out of cruise ships, allowing passengers to walk around the town.

27 Aug 2023

24

Stornoway, Isle of Lewis08:00 - 17:00

Tour description Stornoway, Scotland The Isle of Lewis and Harris is the northernmost and largest of the Outer Hebrides-the Western Isles in common parlance. The island's only major town, Stornoway, is on a nearly landlocked harbor on the east coast of Lewis. It's the port capital for the Outer Hebrides and the island's cultural center, such that it is. Stornoway has an increasing number of good restaurants. Lewis has some fine historic attractions, including the Calanais Standing Stones-a truly magical place. The Uists are known for their rare, plentiful wildlife. Stornoway. Besides being the island's main entry point for ferries, Stornoway is also Lewis's main arts center. You'll find some good restaurants in town if you want to have lunch off the ship. The town can be explored by bicycle if you are so inclined. Local rental shops can give you advice on where to ride, including a route to Tolsta that takes in five stunning beaches before reaching the edge of moorland. An Lanntair Arts Centre. The fabulous An Lanntair Arts Centre has exhibitions of contemporary and traditional art, as well as a cinema, a gift shop, and a restaurant serving international and Scottish fare. There are frequent traditional musical and theatrical events in the impressive auditorium. Kenneth St.. Black House. In the small community of Arnol, the Black House is a well-preserved example of an increasingly rare type of traditional Hebridean home. Once common throughout the islands-even into the 1950s-these dwellings were built without mortar and thatched on a timber framework without eaves. Other characteristic features include an open central peat hearth and the absence of a chimney-hence the soot and the designation black. On display inside are many of the house's original furnishings. To reach Arnol from Port of Ness, head south on the A857 and pick up the A858 at Barvas. Off A858, 21 mi southwest of Port of Ness. Admission charged. Calanais Standing Stones. These impressive stones are actually part of a cluster of several different archaeological sites in this area. Probably positioned in several stages between 3000 BC and 1500 BC, the grouping consists of an avenue of 19 monoliths extending northward from a circle of 13 stones, with other rows leading south, east, and west. Ruins of a cairn sit within the circle on the east side. Researchers believe they may have been used for astronomical observations, but you can create your own explanations. The visitor center has an exhibit on the stones, a gift shop, and a tearoom. On an unmarked road off A858. Admission charged. Dun Carloway. One of the best-preserved Iron Age brochs (circular stone towers) in Scotland, Dun Carloway dominates the scattered community of Carloway. The mysterious tower was probably built around 2,000 years ago as protection against seaborne raiders. The Dun Broch Centre explains more about the broch and its setting. Off A857. Gearrannan. Up a side road north from Carloway, Gearrannan is an old black-house village that has been brought back to life with a museum screening excellent short films on peat cutting and weaving. For a unique experience, groups can rent the restored houses. Leverburgh. At Leverburgh you can take the ferry to North Uist. Nearby Northton has several attractions; St. Clement's Church at Rodel is particularly worth a visit. MacGillivray Centre. Located in a round building overlooking the bay, the MacGillivray Centre gives insight into the life and work of William MacGillivray (1796-1852), a noted naturalist with strong links to Harris. MacGillivray authored the five-volume History of British Birds. This is a great location for a picnic (there are tables for just such a purpose). A walk to a ruined church starts at the parking lot. A859, Northton. Seallam! Visitor Centre and Co Leis Thu? Genealogical Research Centre. The center is where you can trace your Western Isles ancestry. Photographs and interpretive signs describe the history of Harris and its people. The owners organize guided walks and cultural evenings weekly between May and September. Off A859, Northton. Admission charged. St. Clement's Church. At the southernmost point of Harris is the community of Rodel, where you can find St. Clement's Church, a cruciform church standing on a hillock. This is the most impressive pre-Reformation church in the Outer Hebrides; it was built around 1500 and contains the magnificently sculptured tomb (1528) of the church's builder, Alasdair Crotach, MacLeod chief of Dunvegan Castle. Rodel is 3 mi south of Leverburgh and 21 mi south of Tarbert. A859, Rodel. Port of Ness. The stark, windswept community of Port of Ness, 30 mi north of Stornoway, cradles a small harbor squeezed in among the rocks. Butt of Lewis Lighthouse. At the northernmost point of Lewis stands the Butt of Lewis Lighthouse, designed by David and Thomas Stevenson (of the prominent engineering family whose best-known member was not an engineer at all, but the novelist Robert Louis Stevenson). The structure was first lighted in 1862. The adjacent cliffs provide a good vantage point for viewing seabirds, whales, and porpoises. The lighthouse is northwest of Port of Ness along the B8014. Shopping Harris tweed is available at many outlets on the islands, including some of the weavers' homes; keep an eye out for signs directing you to weavers' workshops. Harris Tweed Artisans Cooperative. The Harris Tweed Artisans Cooperative sells stylish and quirky hand-crafted tweed clothing, hats, accessories, all made by artists belonging to the cooperative. 40 Point St., Stornoway. Borgh Pottery. At Borgh Pottery, open from Monday to Saturday 9:30 to 6, you can buy attractive hand-thrown studio pottery made on the premises, including lamps, vases, mugs, and dishes. Fivepenny House, A857, Borve.

28 Aug 2023

25

Killybegs08:00 - 18:00

Killybegs The days start early in Killybegs, as this quiet fishing town rumbles to life, and ships with red and blue paint peeling from their hulls quietly depart, ready for a morning's hard work at sea. Located in a scenic part of County Donegal, Killybegs is Ireland's fishing capital, and the salty breeze and pretty streets serve as a revitalising medicine for visitors. The town is also your gateway to some of the country's most majestic coastal scenery, which is dotted with flashing white lighthouses, keeping watch over invigorating seascapes. Killybegs enjoys a privileged position on the coast of north west of Ireland, close to the spectacular Slieve League - a titanic mountain, which explodes upwards from frothing ocean. Walk as close as you dare to the coastline’s sheer drops, or admire the folding cliffs from the best vantage point, down on the water.

29 Aug 2023

26

Belfast07:00 - 17:00

Before English and Scottish settlers arrived in the 1600s, Belfast was a tiny village called Béal Feirste ("sandbank ford") belonging to Ulster's ancient O'Neill clan. With the advent of the Plantation period (when settlers arrived in the 1600s), Sir Arthur Chichester, from Devon in southwestern England, received the city from the English Crown, and his son was made Earl of Donegall. Huguenots fleeing persecution from France settled near here, bringing their valuable linen-work skills. In the 18th century, Belfast underwent a phenomenal expansion—its population doubled every 10 years, despite an ever-present sectarian divide. Although the Anglican gentry despised the Presbyterian artisans—who, in turn, distrusted the native Catholics—Belfast's growth continued at a dizzying speed. The city was a great Victorian success story, an industrial boomtown whose prosperity was built on trade, especially linen and shipbuilding. Famously (or infamously), the Titanic was built here, giving Belfast, for a time, the nickname "Titanic Town." Having laid the foundation stone of the city's university in 1845, Queen Victoria returned to Belfast in 1849 (she is recalled in the names of buildings, streets, bars, monuments, and other places around the city), and in the same year, the university opened under the name Queen's College. Nearly 40 years later, in 1888, Victoria granted Belfast its city charter. Today its population is nearly 300,000, tourist numbers have increased, and this dramatically transformed city is enjoying an unparalleled renaissance.This is all a welcome change from the period when news about Belfast meant reports about "the Troubles." Since the 1994 ceasefire, Northern Ireland's capital city has benefited from major hotel investment, gentrified quaysides (or strands), a sophisticated new performing arts center, and major initiatives to boost tourism. Although the 1996 bombing of offices at Canary Wharf in London disrupted the 1994 peace agreement, the ceasefire was officially reestablished on July 20, 1997, and this embattled city began its quest for a newfound identity.Since 2008, the city has restored all its major public buildings such as museums, churches, theaters, City Hall, Ulster Hall—and even the glorious Crown Bar—spending millions of pounds on its built heritage. A gaol that at the height of the Troubles held some of the most notorious murderers involved in paramilitary violence is now a major visitor attraction.Belfast's city center is made up of three roughly contiguous areas that are easy to navigate on foot. From the south end to the north, it's about an hour's leisurely walk.

30 Aug 2023

27

Cobh09:00 - 17:00

Cork City's nearby harbor district has seen plenty of history. Cork Harbour's draws include Fota Island—with an arboretum, a wildlife park, and the Fota House ancestral estate—and the fishing port of Cobh.

31 Aug 2023

28

Isle of Portland11:00 - 21:00

Joined to the mainland of Dorset by narrow Chesil Beach, Portland is in the heart of England's dramatic Jurassic Coast, so called because its rock bed dates back 185 million years. The coastal cliffs and area's unique flora and fauna are awe-inspiring, the perfect complement to the town's rich history. Portland Castle overlooks the harbor and is one of Henry VIII's best-preserved coastal fortifications. Portland Bill Lighthouse is another landmark, literally, and has been guiding sailors for more than 300 years. You may also enjoy walking to the abandoned Tout Quarry, which has been turned into a delightful stone sculpture park.

01 Sep 2023

29

Portsmouth06:00 - 19:00

Portsmouth is one of the most densely populated cities in Southern England, and is unusual as most of its built-up area occupies Portsea Island, linked to the mainland by road and rail bridges. Although there is a Roman fort at nearby Portchester, occupied later by the Saxons and Normans, there was no settlement on the site of Portsmouth at the time of the 1086 Domesday Book. The town developed in medieval times and received its first charter in 1194 from King Richard I; soon afterwards it became a major naval base. It has the world’s oldest dry dock, and is home to several famous ships, including HMS Victory, HMS Warrior and the Mary Rose, raised from the Solent in 1982. Portsmouth remains an important naval base and is home to a large proportion of the British service fleet. The waterfront area is now dominated by the Spinnaker Tower, 560 feet high, the United Kingdom’s tallest building outside London. Other things to see in the city include the house where Charles Dickens was born, and the City Museum, which contains a permanent exhibition devoted to another famous writer, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, who lived in the town.

02 Sep 2023

(This holiday is generally suitable for persons with reduced mobility. For customers with reduced mobility or any medical condition that may require special assistance or arrangements to be made, please notify your Cruise Concierge at the time of your enquiry, so that we can provide specific information as to the suitability of the holiday, as well as make suitable arrangements with the Holiday Provider on your behalf).

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