Variety Cruises Launches First Gay Cruise

Megan Smith READ TIME: 3 MIN.

Variety Cruises' first Gay Cruise program will set sail August 20-27, 2010. Showcasing Greece and the Greek islands, the cruise spends seven days exploring dazzling Mykonos, Santorini and island gems on the PANORAMA premium sail cruiser. The cruise departs from Marina Zea in Athens with rates starting at $2,290 per person per week.

The intimate-sized ship, elegant accommodations and adventurous excursions cater to discerning gay travelers seeking an exquisite cruise experience. Special activities include lengthy swim stops in selected beaches such as in Mykonos, DJ-spun music, evenings off-board in specific ports of call, special events and much more. During the day, life on board centers around the outdoor areas including two bars and the sun deck. In the evening, passengers can relax in one of the ship's two lounges. The swimming platform on PANORAMA's stern enables guests to swim when weather and anchorage conditions permit.

The PANORAMA is a state-of-the-art sail cruiser renovated in 2008. Its 49 passengers enjoy elegant staterooms with a variation of twin, double or triple-based accommodations including en suite bathrooms. Beautifully appointed common areas include a lounge with piano bar, dinning room and sundeck. The PANORAMA's cabins are located on three decks and finished with wooden furniture and light fabrics. Cabins on upper and main decks feature large windows, while lower deck cabins have portholes. Fully equipped bathrooms are finished with marble. All cabins are fitted with air conditioning, TV, telephone, hairdryers, mini-fridge, central music, public address system and safe boxes.

Fares on the Gay-themed cruise begin at $2,290 per person per week and include:

  • Accommodation in double or twin cabins with private SH/WC & air conditioning

  • American buffet breakfast and one meal daily, including a Welcome Cocktail, an Arabian Night, BBQ (weather permitting) and Captain's Dinner.

  • Regular (filter) coffee, tea and water free all day

  • Use of fishing and snorkeling equipment (subject to availability).

  • Multilingual cruise escort

    Gay Cruise Itinerary

    Day 1 (Friday): Embarkation from Marina Zea-Hydra between 2-3 pm. Passengers enjoy a welcome drink and meet the crew and fellow passengers. Sail for Hydra with a three-hour stop before overnight sailing to Kimolos.

    Day 2 (Saturday): Morning arrival in Poliegos or Kimolos, two very small islands known for their amazing beaches. Morning swim stop followed by a BBQ on deck. Afternoon sailing for Folegandros, one of the most amazing and less known islands in the Aegean Sea. Walk the amazing Upper City and dine at a traditional Greek taverna.

    Day 3 (Sunday): Morning arrival at Santorini (occasionally at anchor) to explore its unique capital Fira. Optional excursion to a typical winery with breathtaking view, tour of the villages, including Oia. Overnight at sea to Mykonos.

    Day 4 (Monday): Morning swim stop in the enchanting bay of Mykonos. Afternoon sailing into Mykonos port. Free evening. Overnight in Mykonos.

    Day 5 (Tuesday): Optional Excursion to visit Delos archaeological site. Swim stop at a Mykonos beach before rejoining Mykonos port in the afternoon. Overnight in Mykonos.

    Day 6 (Wednesday): Early noon swim stop. In the afternoon, arrive in Kea to visit picturesque Ioulis, the capital. That night is a special evening in honor of the Captain & Crew, the "Captains Dinner". Overnight in Kea.

    Day 7 (Thursday): Early noon arrival in Sounion for a relaxing swim under the temple of Poseidon. In the evening arrival in Marina Zea. Overnight in Marina Zea.

    Day 8 (Friday): Disembarkation after breakfast in Marina Zea.

    Variety Cruises offers scheduled departures and private charters in geographically and culturally diverse destinations. A vast range of packages allows gay and lesbian passengers to choose a life of luxury at sea or a more affordable cruise experience on its intimate ships and charter vessels. Discerning travelers seeking exquisite facilities, personalized service and explorations of unspoiled destinations rich in history find their fit with Variety Cruises. Travelers can charter the entire mega yacht for special group vacations and create a custom itinerary with the help of Variety Cruises.

    Founded in 2005, Variety Cruises is one of the world's largest small ship cruise company worldwide with a fleet of more than 17 fully owned vessels. Six Variety Cruises mega yachts offer 22 to 26 cabins and operate 7-day scheduled cruises and charters in Western/ Eastern Mediterranean, the Greek Islands, Red Sea, Malta, Spain and Italy.

    For more information on Variety Cruises' offerings for gay travelers, please visit

    by Megan Smith , EDGE Assistant Travel Editor

    Megan is the Assistant Travel Editor for EDGE Publications. Based in Australia, she has been published in gay and lesbian publications in both America and Australia, and she has been on assignment as a travel-writer for Let's Go travel guides in Australia, New Zealand and Hawaii.

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