#COASTAL CRUISING – The world's smallest 5-star luxury cruiseship, Hebridean Princess (1964/2,112grt) is nearing the end of a 7-night 'South from Cork' fly-cruise, visiting locations only along the south-west coastline, writes Jehan Ashmore.
Accommodating just 50 guests in opulent surroundings styled as a 'country house party atmosphere', Hebridean Princess is a far cry from her previous career as a humble ferry serving in the Scottish western isles.
On her Irish cruise, she has called so far to Schull, Bantry, Glengariff, Castletownbere, Slea Head near Dingle and Kinsale.
What makes this cruise itinerary unusual is that the area covered is confined to a region. Normally other operators visiting Ireland, asides those just calling to one or two city ports, would visit ports stretching along the western seaboard. Also different is that this fly-cruise departs and returns from the same Irish port.
The final night of the cruise will be spent on board the vessel tonight, with the ship moored at North Custom House Quay, beside the Port of Cork Company building in the heart of the city docklands.
Prices for the cruise operated by Hebridean Island Cruises started from £3,400 per person which includes two gala dinners and return scheduled flights from selected UK airports to Cork.
Hebridean Princess will remain in Cork until tomorrow when she begins a 9-nights 'Gaelic Explorer' cruise with calls to Kinsale, Dublin, Isle of Man and Northern Ireland before returning to home waters in Scotland.