The world is full of beautiful places, yet virginal sands and azure seas have long been an enticing attraction for cruise liners. Cruise chef jobs can call for seemingly endless, hard days behind a kitchen platform, but no other industry provides as much travel as cruising does.
The modern cruise industry kicked off in the 1960s when cruise liners offered ‘fun ships’ to the Caribbean for vacationers. Ever since, the area has continued to draw sailing holidaymakers and along with it the crew that makes the cruise ship their home.
In the Caribbean, there are a host of islands, each one as exquisite as the next. Aruba, Barbados and the Cayman Islands are common on itineraries. Antigua and Barbuda, the Bahamas and the Virgin Islands see a constant stream of tourists. Popular ports in the Caribbean include Nassau and CocoCay in the Bahamas, Belize City in Belize and Cozumel in Mexico.
When not working, cruise ship chefs can enjoy basking in the warm tropical waters, an excellent array of local fare and adventure sports activities. Most guests prefer to take a trip inland and see the sights, thereby skipping lunch on board, which gives some crew a bit of free time.
In North America, Alaska is a popular destination for cruise ships. Thanks to its jaw-dropping scenery, raw natural beauty and icy glaciers, the region boasts excellent photo opportunities despite the cold. Juneau, Victoria on Vancouver Island, Glacier Bay and Tracy Arm Fjord are marvellous spots to spend a day off when at work.
Cold cruises are not popular just in Alaska, but in Scandinavia as well. The land of the Vikings offers pretty villages, sparkling white landscapes, and a chance sighting of the kaleidoscopic Northern Lights. The fjords of Norway, Stockholm, St Petersburg and Copenhagen see many passengers alight at their ports.
Further along in Europe, the summer invites thousands of cruise ship guests to the Mediterranean coast. History and food are the mainstays here, although the beaches and other local attractions do not drag along too far behind. Athens and Santorini, Barcelona, Dubrovnik, Istanbul, Lisbon, Rome and Venice, Valletta and Villefranche-sur-Mer present a colourful addition to your picture postcard collection of holiday images.
In the East, cruises are now venturing more frequently to ports such as Hong Kong, Macau, Bali, Shanghai, Busan, Cochin, Bintulu, Yangon, ports in New Zealand and Dubai. An increasing number of guests are now travelling Eastwards, and with many cruise ship chefs hailing from this region, it presents the warmth of feeling of being closer to home.
Wherever it is, having cruise ship jobs can seem like a perpetual vacation, what with the beautiful ports of call of each cruise line. Between shifts at work, crew can enjoy time off in some of the most beautiful coastal places on Earth.