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Small Ship Cruises

Small cruise ships are perfect for those who long to explore the world by sea but baulk at the thought of bustling atriums, buffet queues and booming nightclubs. If you’d rather head off the beaten track and discover less-visited hidden gems rather than the congested overcrowded ports frequented on a daily basis by larger cruise ships, then a luxury cruise on a small ship could be just what you’re looking for.

Small ships cruises are all about personalised service, a cosy atmosphere and itineraries which focus on discovering new destinations rather than flashy facilities. Whilst you may not have climbing walls, zip wires and trampoline parks on-board your small ship, you will be able to enjoy gourmet meals, free-flowing wine and excellent enrichment programmes.

How many passengers are on each small ship?

On this page, we’ve listed luxury cruises on ships which have fewer than 500 passengers. The world’s largest ships have more than 5000 passengers, making these ships with less than 500 seem tiny by comparison. Within the small ship category, you’ll find that some ships are much smaller than others, with luxury yacht Crystal Esprit accommodating just 62 passengers.

Small luxury cruise ships

These small luxury cruise ships each have fewer than 500 passengers:

Where can you sail on a small ship cruise?

One advantage of small cruise ships is that due to their size, they are able to slip into some of the most remote ports of call. On a luxury cruise, you can expect to experience some of the world’s most remote islands, hidden harbours and secluded coves. You’ll have access to many of the more elite destinations too, including the treasures of the Mediterranean, Asia and elsewhere, offering you the chance to delve into fascinating cultures or simply enjoy the spectacular unspoiled scenery.

Expedition cruises

Many small cruise ships are expedition ships, with reinforced hulls to slice through ice and the ability to sail close to shore and dock in the smallest of ports. The aim of expedition cruising is to head off the beaten track and experience the culture, landscape and wildlife of rarely-explored regions. Destinations include the Galapagos, Australia, the South Pacific, the Arctic and the Antarctic. If you’d like to embark on the voyage of a lifetime, discovering some of the planet’s most remote destinations, take a look at our selection of expedition cruises.

Expedition ships

Luxury expedition cruises are available on the following ships:

Browse expedition cruises

River cruises

River cruising is another great option for anyone looking for a small-ship experience. River cruise ships have to be small to be able to fit under bridges and through locks. With destinations across Europe, Asia, Africa and the USA, perhaps a luxury river cruise could be ideal for your next trip? Our sister company, rivervoyages.com specialises in river cruising and offers sailings with luxury river cruise lines including Scenic, Tauck, Uniworld and Crystal River Cruises.

See luxury river cruises

Book your small ship, luxury cruise today

When it comes to small, luxury cruises, we are the experts. No matter where you want to go in the world, we will help create the perfect holiday, tailor-made for you. So, call your personal expert Cruise Concierge on 08082026105 today, and secure your ideal small ship cruise escape.

1 Antarctica, South Georgia & Falkland Islands
27 December 2019 - 22 nights

Buenos Aires | Buenos Aires | Ushuaia (Tierra Del Fuego) | Falkland Islands (Stanley) | Falkland Islands (Stanley) | Antarctic Peninsula | South Georgia | South Georgia | South Georgia | South Georgia | South Georgia | Antarctic Peninsula | Antarctic Peninsula | Antarctic Peninsula | Antarctic Peninsula | Antarctic Peninsula | Ushuaia (Tierra Del Fuego) | Buenos Aires | Buenos Aires | Fly To UK | Arrive UK more

Fly Cruise£19199pp
2 Papeete to Syndey
03 January 2020 - 20 nights

Tahiti (Papeete) | Bora Bora | Pago Pago | Apia | Suva | Lautoka | Champagne Bay | Port Vila | Isle Of Pines | Noumea | Brisbane | Brisbane | Sydney, Australia more

Fly Cruise£11989pp
Cruise Only£7129pp
3 Southern Caribbean Sojourn
04 January 2020 - 12 nights

Miami | Key West | Cartagena, Colombia | Oranjestad | Kralendijk | Saline Bay, Mayreau, St. Vincent And The Grenadine | Bridgetown, Barbados | Bridgetown, Barbados more

Fly Cruise£5149pp
Cruise Only£3869pp
4 Caribbean & African Isles
04 January 2020 - 21 nights

Miami | Miami | Key West | Key West | Cartagena, Colombia | Cartagena, Colombia | Oranjestad | Oranjestad | Kralendijk | Kralendijk | Saline Bay, Mayreau, St. Vincent And The Grenadine | Saline Bay, Mayreau, St. Vincent And The Grenadine | Bridgetown, Barbados | Bridgetown, Barbados | Bridgetown, Barbados | Bridgetown, Barbados | Mindelo | Dakar, Senegal | Dakar, Senegal | Dakar, Senegal more

Fly Cruise£9049pp
Cruise Only£7749pp
5 Classic Caribbean Yacht Harbors
11 January 2020 - 7 nights

Philipsburg, St Maarten | Sopers Hole (Frenchmans Cay) | Gustavia | Basseterre | Terre-de-Haut, Guadeloupe | Castries, St. Lucia | Saline Bay, Mayreau, St. Vincent And The Grenadine | Bridgetown, Barbados more

Fly Cruise£5239pp
Cruise Only£3879pp
6 African Landfalls
16 January 2020 - 27 nights

Bridgetown, Barbados | Bridgetown, Barbados | Mindelo | Dakar, Senegal | Dakar, Senegal | Dakar, Senegal | Dakar, Senegal | Banjul, The Gambia | Banjul, The Gambia | Abidjan, Cote D'Ivoire | Walvis Bay | Walvis Bay | Luderitz | Cape Town, South Africa | Cape Town, South Africa more

Fly Cruise£9579pp
Cruise Only£8719pp
7 Exotic Caribbean In-Depth
18 January 2020 - 14 nights

Bridgetown, Barbados | Port Elizabeth (Grenadines) | Trois Ilets, Martinique | Basseterre | Charlestown, Nevis | St John S, Antigua | Basseterre, St. Kitts | Philipsburg, St Maarten | Sopers Hole (Frenchmans Cay) | Gustavia | Basseterre | Terre-de-Haut, Guadeloupe | Castries, St. Lucia | Saline Bay, Mayreau, St. Vincent And The Grenadine | Bridgetown, Barbados more

Fly Cruise£5719pp
Cruise Only£4849pp
8 Classic Yachtsman's Caribbean
18 January 2020 - 7 nights

Bridgetown, Barbados | Port Elizabeth (Grenadines) | Trois Ilets, Martinique | Basseterre | Charlestown, Nevis | St John S, Antigua | Basseterre, St. Kitts | Philipsburg, St Maarten more

Fly Cruise£3249pp
Cruise Only£2419pp
9 Galapagos Outer Loop
19 January 2020 - 7 nights

Baltra (Galapagos) | Daphne Island (Galapagos) | Gardner Bay (Espanola) | Punta Suarez (Espanola) | Cormorant Point (Floreana) | Post Office | Moreno Point (Isabella) | Urvina Bay (Isabela) | Espinoza Point (Fernandina) | Vicente Roca Point | South Plaza (Santa Cruz) | Dragon Hill (Santa Cruz) | Puerto Ayora (Santa Cruz) | Baltra (Galapagos) more

Fly CruiseCall
Cruise Only£6559pp
10 Fort Lauderdale (Florida) to Fort Lauderdale
23 January 2020 - 11 nights

Fort Lauderdale (Florida), United States | Clarence Town, Long Island Bahamas | San Juan | Gustavia | Little Bay | Philipsburg, St Maarten | St John US Virgin Islands | Fort Lauderdale (Florida), United States more

Fly Cruise£4499pp
Cruise OnlyCall
11 Classic Caribbean Yacht Harbors
25 January 2020 - 7 nights

Philipsburg, St Maarten | Sopers Hole (Frenchmans Cay) | Gustavia | Basseterre | Terre-de-Haut, Guadeloupe | Castries, St. Lucia | Saline Bay, Mayreau, St. Vincent And The Grenadine | Bridgetown, Barbados more

Fly Cruise£3639pp
Cruise Only£2599pp
12 Baltra to San Cristobal
25 January 2020 - 7 nights

Baltra (Galapagos) | Isla Daphne Grande | Bahia Darwin, Genovesa, Ecuador | El Barranco (Genovesa) | North Seymour (Galapagos) | Sullivan Bay (Santiago) | Rabida (Galapagos) | El Eden, Santa Cruz | San Cristobal, Ecuador | San Cristobal, Ecuador | Gardner Bay (Espanola) | Punta Suarez (Espanola) | Puerto Ayora (Santa Cruz) | Plazas Sur, Ecuador | San Cristobal, Ecuador more

Fly Cruise£6019pp
Cruise Only£6019pp
13 Galapagos Inner Loop
26 January 2020 - 7 nights

Baltra (Galapagos) | Daphne Island (Galapagos) | Egas Port | Rabida (Galapagos) | Elizabeth Bay | Tagus Cove (Isabella) | Sullivan Bay (Santiago) | Bartolome Island | Las Bachas (Santa Cruz) | North Seymour (Galapagos) | Puerto Baquerizo (Cristobal) | Punta Pitt (San Cristobal) | Puerto Ayora (Santa Cruz) | Baltra (Galapagos) more

Fly CruiseCall
Cruise Only£5969pp
14 Classic Yachtsman's Caribbean
01 February 2020 - 7 nights

Bridgetown, Barbados | Port Elizabeth (Grenadines) | Trois Ilets, Martinique | Basseterre | Charlestown, Nevis | St John S, Antigua | Basseterre, St. Kitts | Philipsburg, St Maarten more

Fly Cruise£3369pp
Cruise Only£2599pp
15 Exotic Caribbean In-Depth
01 February 2020 - 14 nights

Bridgetown, Barbados | Port Elizabeth (Grenadines) | Trois Ilets, Martinique | Basseterre | Charlestown, Nevis | St John S, Antigua | Basseterre, St. Kitts | Philipsburg, St Maarten | Sopers Hole (Frenchmans Cay) | Gustavia | Basseterre | Terre-de-Haut, Guadeloupe | Castries, St. Lucia | Saline Bay, Mayreau, St. Vincent And The Grenadine | Bridgetown, Barbados more

Fly Cruise£4999pp
Cruise Only£4169pp
16 Ultimate Antarctica & Patagonia
02 February 2020 - 21 nights

Buenos Aires | Montevideo | Port Stanley | Antarctic Peninsula | Antarctic Peninsula | Antarctic Peninsula | Antarctic Peninsula | Antarctic Peninsula | Antarctic Peninsula | Ushuaia (Tierra Del Fuego) | Punta Arenas, Chile | Castro (Chiloe Island) | Puerto Montt | Santiago (San Antonio) more

Fly Cruise£10989pp
Cruise Only£9199pp
17 Antarctica in Depth
03 February 2020 - 11 nights

Ushuaia (Tierra Del Fuego) | Antarctic Peninsula | Antarctic Peninsula | Antarctic Peninsula | Antarctic Peninsula | Antarctic Peninsula | Antarctic Peninsula | Ushuaia (Tierra Del Fuego) more

Fly Cruise£13149pp
18 Fort Lauderdale,Florida to Fort Lauderdale,Florida
03 February 2020 - 10 nights

Fort Lauderdale (Florida), United States | Jost Van Dyke Bay | Basseterre, St. Kitts | Gustavia | St John US Virgin Islands | San Juan | Fort Lauderdale (Florida), United States more

Fly Cruise£4749pp
Cruise Only£4749pp
19 Classic Caribbean Yacht Harbors
08 February 2020 - 7 nights

Philipsburg, St Maarten | Sopers Hole (Frenchmans Cay) | Gustavia | Basseterre | Terre-de-Haut, Guadeloupe | Castries, St. Lucia | Saline Bay, Mayreau, St. Vincent And The Grenadine | Bridgetown, Barbados more

Fly Cruise£3099pp
Cruise Only£1939pp
20 Ushuaia to Ushuaia
08 February 2020 - 10 nights

Ushuaia (Tierra Del Fuego) | Antarctic Peninsula | Antarctic Peninsula | Antarctic Peninsula | Ushuaia (Tierra Del Fuego)

Fly Cruise£15029pp
Cruise Only£15029pp
21 World Cruise: Africa & India Adventure
12 February 2020 - 39 nights

Cape Town, South Africa | Durban | Richard's Bay | Ilha De Mocambique | Andoany (Hell-Ville), Nosy-Be, Madagascar | Zanzibar, Tanzania | Mombasa, Kenya | Mombasa, Kenya | Mombasa, Kenya | Victoria, Mahé | Praslin Island | Male, Maldives | Colombo | Hambantota, Sri Lanka | Chennai/Madras, India | Chennai/Madras, India | Sabang, Pulau We | Phuket | Langkawi (Malaysia) | Penang | Port Klang | Singapore | Singapore more

Fly Cruise£15989pp
Cruise Only£14549pp
22 Antarctica in Depth
14 February 2020 - 11 nights

Ushuaia (Tierra Del Fuego) | Antarctic Peninsula | Antarctic Peninsula | Antarctic Peninsula | Antarctic Peninsula | Antarctic Peninsula | Antarctic Peninsula | Ushuaia (Tierra Del Fuego) more

Fly Cruise£18089pp
23 Classic Yachtsman's Caribbean
15 February 2020 - 7 nights

Bridgetown, Barbados | Port Elizabeth (Grenadines) | Trois Ilets, Martinique | Basseterre | Charlestown, Nevis | St John S, Antigua | Basseterre, St. Kitts | Philipsburg, St Maarten more

Fly Cruise£3779pp
Cruise Only£2419pp
24 Exotic Caribbean In-Depth
15 February 2020 - 14 nights

Bridgetown, Barbados | Port Elizabeth (Grenadines) | Trois Ilets, Martinique | Basseterre | Charlestown, Nevis | St John S, Antigua | Basseterre, St. Kitts | Philipsburg, St Maarten | Sopers Hole (Frenchmans Cay) | Gustavia | Basseterre | Terre-de-Haut, Guadeloupe | Castries, St. Lucia | Saline Bay, Mayreau, St. Vincent And The Grenadine | Bridgetown, Barbados more

Fly Cruise£5499pp
Cruise Only£4359pp
25 Classic Caribbean Yacht Harbors
22 February 2020 - 7 nights

Philipsburg, St Maarten | Sopers Hole (Frenchmans Cay) | Gustavia | Basseterre | Terre-de-Haut, Guadeloupe | Castries, St. Lucia | Saline Bay, Mayreau, St. Vincent And The Grenadine | Bridgetown, Barbados more

Fly Cruise£3399pp
Cruise Only£2419pp
26 Caribbean Gems In-Depth
22 February 2020 - 14 nights

Philipsburg, St Maarten | Sopers Hole (Frenchmans Cay) | Gustavia | Basseterre | Terre-de-Haut, Guadeloupe | Castries, St. Lucia | Saline Bay, Mayreau, St. Vincent And The Grenadine | Bridgetown, Barbados | Port Elizabeth (Grenadines) | Trois Ilets, Martinique | Basseterre | Charlestown, Nevis | St John S, Antigua | Basseterre, St. Kitts | Philipsburg, St Maarten more

Fly Cruise£5279pp
Cruise Only£4359pp
27 Baltra to San Cristobal
22 February 2020 - 7 nights

Baltra (Galapagos) | Isla Daphne Grande | Bahia Darwin, Genovesa, Ecuador | El Barranco (Genovesa) | North Seymour (Galapagos) | Sullivan Bay (Santiago) | Rabida (Galapagos) | El Eden, Santa Cruz | San Cristobal, Ecuador | San Cristobal, Ecuador | Gardner Bay (Espanola) | Punta Suarez (Espanola) | Puerto Ayora (Santa Cruz) | Plazas Sur, Ecuador | San Cristobal, Ecuador more

Fly Cruise£7659pp
Cruise Only£7659pp
28 Ultimate Antarctica & Patagonia
23 February 2020 - 21 nights

Santiago (San Antonio) | Puerto Montt | Castro (Chiloe Island) | Punta Arenas, Chile | Ushuaia (Tierra Del Fuego) | Antarctic Peninsula | Antarctic Peninsula | Antarctic Peninsula | Antarctic Peninsula | Antarctic Peninsula | Antarctic Peninsula | Port Stanley | Montevideo | Buenos Aires more

Fly Cruise£9499pp
Cruise Only£8389pp
29 Sydney To Auckland
28 February 2020 - 14 nights

Sydney, Australia | Melbourne | Melbourne | Burnie | Dunedin | Akaroa | Wellington | Napier | Tauranga | Bay Of Islands | Auckland more

Fly Cruise£6999pp
Cruise Only£5629pp
30 Ushuaia - Cape Town
28 February 2020 - 21 nights

Ushuaia (Tierra Del Fuego) | New Island | Westpoint Island | Stanley, Falkland Islands | South Georgia | South Georgia | South Georgia | South Georgia | South Georgia | Tristan Da Cunha | Nightingale Island | Gough Island, St Helena | Cape Town, South Africa | Cape Town, South Africa more

Fly Cruise£9599pp
Cruise Only£9599pp
31 Exotic Caribbean In-Depth
29 February 2020 - 14 nights

Bridgetown, Barbados | Port Elizabeth (Grenadines) | Trois Ilets, Martinique | Basseterre | Charlestown, Nevis | St John S, Antigua | Basseterre, St. Kitts | Philipsburg, St Maarten | Sopers Hole (Frenchmans Cay) | Gustavia | Basseterre | Terre-de-Haut, Guadeloupe | Castries, St. Lucia | Saline Bay, Mayreau, St. Vincent And The Grenadine | Bridgetown, Barbados more

Fly Cruise£5319pp
Cruise Only£4359pp
32 Classic Yachtsman's Caribbean
29 February 2020 - 7 nights

Bridgetown, Barbados | Port Elizabeth (Grenadines) | Trois Ilets, Martinique | Basseterre | Charlestown, Nevis | St John S, Antigua | Basseterre, St. Kitts | Philipsburg, St Maarten more

Fly Cruise£3069pp
Cruise Only£2419pp
33 Seychelles Yachting Serenede
29 February 2020 - 7 nights

Mahe | St. Anne Island, Seychelles | St. Anne Island, Seychelles | Cousin Island, Seychelles | Praslin Island | Praslin Island | Praslin Island | La Passe, La Digue, Seychelles | Laraie Bay, Curieuse Island, Seychelles | Laraie Bay, Curieuse Island, Seychelles | Laraie Bay, Curieuse Island, Seychelles | Aride, Seychelles | Big Sister Island, Seychelles | Mahe | Mahe | Mahe more

Fly Cruise£5699pp
Cruise Only£4329pp
34 Legends Of The Spice Route
01 March 2020 - 21 nights

Victoria, Mahé | Victoria, Mahé | Praslin Island | Praslin Island | Male, Maldives | Male, Maldives | Colombo | Colombo | Hambantota, Sri Lanka | Hambantota, Sri Lanka | Chennai/Madras, India | Chennai/Madras, India | Chennai/Madras, India | Chennai/Madras, India | Sabang, Pulau We | Sabang, Pulau We | Phuket | Phuket | Porto Malai, Langkawi | Penang | Penang | Port Klang | Singapore | Singapore | Singapore | Singapore more

Fly Cruise£7749pp
Cruise Only£7749pp
35 Antarctica in Depth
05 March 2020 - 15 nights

Buenos Aires | Buenos Aires | Ushuaia (Tierra Del Fuego) | South Shetland Islands | Antarctic Peninsula | Antarctic Peninsula | Antarctic Peninsula | Antarctic Peninsula | Antarctic Peninsula | Antarctic Peninsula | Ushuaia (Tierra Del Fuego) | Buenos Aires | Arrive UK more

Fly Cruise£11619pp
36 Antarctica in Depth
07 March 2020 - 11 nights

Ushuaia (Tierra Del Fuego) | Antarctic Peninsula | Antarctic Peninsula | Antarctic Peninsula | Antarctic Peninsula | Antarctic Peninsula | Antarctic Peninsula | Ushuaia (Tierra Del Fuego) more

Fly Cruise£11979pp
37 Caribbean Gems In-Depth
07 March 2020 - 14 nights

Philipsburg, St Maarten | Sopers Hole (Frenchmans Cay) | Gustavia | Basseterre | Terre-de-Haut, Guadeloupe | Castries, St. Lucia | Saline Bay, Mayreau, St. Vincent And The Grenadine | Bridgetown, Barbados | Port Elizabeth (Grenadines) | Trois Ilets, Martinique | Basseterre | Charlestown, Nevis | St John S, Antigua | Basseterre, St. Kitts | Philipsburg, St Maarten more

Fly Cruise£5439pp
Cruise Only£4359pp
38 Classic Caribbean Yacht Harbors
07 March 2020 - 7 nights

Philipsburg, St Maarten | Sopers Hole (Frenchmans Cay) | Gustavia | Basseterre | Terre-de-Haut, Guadeloupe | Castries, St. Lucia | Saline Bay, Mayreau, St. Vincent And The Grenadine | Bridgetown, Barbados more

Fly Cruise£3559pp
Cruise Only£2419pp
39 Baltra to San Cristobal
07 March 2020 - 7 nights

Baltra (Galapagos) | Isla Daphne Grande | Bahia Darwin, Genovesa, Ecuador | El Barranco (Genovesa) | North Seymour (Galapagos) | Sullivan Bay (Santiago) | Rabida (Galapagos) | El Eden, Santa Cruz | San Cristobal, Ecuador | San Cristobal, Ecuador | Gardner Bay (Espanola) | Punta Suarez (Espanola) | Puerto Ayora (Santa Cruz) | Plazas Sur, Ecuador | San Cristobal, Ecuador more

Fly Cruise£6299pp
Cruise Only£6299pp
40 Rio De Janeiro to Fort Lauderdale
07 March 2020 - 20 nights

Rio De Janeiro | Salvador | Recife | Fortaleza | Ile Royale | Bridgetown, Barbados | St Georges | Fort De France | St John S, Antigua | Gustavia | San Juan | Fort Lauderdale (Florida), United States more

Fly Cruise£6199pp
Cruise OnlyCall
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