Freighter cruising has always been of curiosity to me. I know of some people who swear by them and wouldn’t cruise any other way. But these are not your typical cruises and are not for everyone. On board these cruises you won’t find any Broadway style shows, numerous places to eat at, never ending entertainment, lots of people, staff at every corner to serve your every need, and you can’t forget the on board shopping!
What you will find on freighter cruises is a lot of peace and quiet. Some ships have a small pool, gym, laundry facility, deck chairs, ship tours and a small library. You really need to be the kind of person who can entertain yourself to really enjoy a freighter cruise. The cabins on the freighters are basic, no fancy amenities but still nice accommodations. Some ships even offer suite cabins. The ships carry anywhere from 2 to 200 passengers, depending on the ship and voyage. You do have to keep in mind these are working ships so you should expect there to be some noise and movement during the loading and unloading of freight.
With the typical cruise, you will have 3 or 4 port stops on a 7 day cruise with anywhere from 3 to 4 days at sea. With the freighter cruises you will often stop at several ports a day. Some of the ships do offer shore excursions at some of the ports.
The really great thing about freighter cruises is that they go into ports that cruise ships never go into (and a lot of them) and you will get to see a great deal of the countryside. Since there will only be a small group of passengers on the ship you will have the opportunity to get to know your fellow passenger and you won’t have that feeling of constantly being lost in the crowd like you are on the mega cruise ships.
If you are tired of the same old cruises and are looking for something different freighter cruising is definitely something to look into.
Here are a few places to start:
Compagnie Polynesienne de Transport Maritime