In 2020-2021, the fleet of Fred. Olsen's smaller, intimately-sized ocean and river vessels, Balmoral, Black Watch, Boudicca, Braemar, plus river addition, Brabant, will be visiting 277 destinations in 90 different countries, across 6 continents, covering a total of 104 scenic cruising areas, on 170 itineraries.
Company’s 2020-2021 ocean program will feature 144 itineraries, including 9 maiden ports (Hiroshima, Beppu, Kochi, Nagoya, Fakarava, Raiatea, Savusavu, Halong Bay, Surabaya). MS Brabant's guests will sail on the Danube, Main, Moselle, and Rhine rivers on 26 itineraries, including Luxembourg City for the first time. Next year, Brabant will be visiting a total of 43 ports in 13 countries, covering 14 scenic cruising areas of which 5 brand new.
As well as the line's signature ‘Norwegian fjords’ experiences, Fred Olsen will be taking passengers to discover the beauty of 3 new scenic cruising areas, on Balmoral’s 34-night "American Waterways in the Fall with New York" cruise, from Southampton UK in September 2020: Cape Cod Canal, Hudson River and Chesapeake & Delaware Canal. Shallow-drafted Braemar will repeat her best-selling transit of the Corinth Canal on her 25-night "Corinth Canal & Greek Islands" voyage from Southampton UK in April 2021.
Another key theme is "Community & Way of Life" focusing on authenticity. Boudicca’s 14-night "Authentic Japan" fly-cruise out of Tokyo in January 2021 is such an example, where passengers will experience in-depth shore trips, including taking part in a tea ceremony, connecting with the heritage of the Samurai on a trip to Kamakura, the historic home of the fearless warrior caste, and watching a Geisha perform authentic dances.
The 32-night "Idyllic Islands of the Caribbean" itinerary aboard Black Watch from Liverpool in November 2020 is due to take in lesser-known parts of the region, such as Mayreau, Grenadine Islands, populated by under 300 inhabitants.
The line’s "Scenery & Wildlife" themed voyages highlight the world's best flora and fauna. Boudicca’s 14-night "African Wildlife Adventure" from Cape Town (December 2020) gives the chance to go in search of chameleons and lemurs in their native Madagascan habitat. From Port Elizabeth and Durban in South Africa, travelers can seek out the ‘Big 5’, on safari adventures. Balmoral’s 10-night "Icelandic Wonders & Wildlife" sailing from Edinburgh in June 2020 takes in the waterfalls of Godafoss and Gullfoss as well as offers the opportunity to search for humpback whales along Iceland’s longest fjord.
The cruise line is also due to be operating more of its "5-Night" cruises. Passengers can see the best of Norway on Balmoral’s "5-Night Fjordland Discovery" out of Edinburgh in July 2020 taking advantage of the strategic location of the port and its close proximity to Norway, along with Braemar’s maiden "Delights of Devon & Cornwall" getaway in August 2020, visiting St Mary’s on the Isles of Scilly, Falmouth, and Plymouth.
Examples of "Best Time To Go" itineraries in 2020-2021 include Black Watch’s 10-night "Authentic Flavours of Portugal" sailing from Liverpool in June 2020, that coincides with the "Feast of St. Anthony", also popular as the "Sardine Festival", Black Watch’s "Canaries & Portugal with Funchal Flower Parade" voyage, taking in the city’s floral spectacular; and a first for the line, Boudicca’s 28-night "Discovering Asia with Singapore at New Year" fly-cruise from Seychelles in December 2020.
Other highlights of the new 2020-2021 ocean cruise program of Fred. Olsen, include:
- Black Watch’s 9-night "Mystery Cruise" from Liverpool (April 2020, adult-only)
- Black Watch’s 14-night "The Fjords of Greenland" trip from Liverpool (August 2020)
- Balmoral’s 9-night "Winter Fjords with Shetland" sailing from Southampton (January 2021)
- Boudicca’s 14-night "Vietnam, Hong Kong, and Singapore" fly-cruise via Hong Kong (January 2021)
- Balmoral’s "In Search of the Northern Lights in 8 Nights" itinerary from Newcastle (March 2021).
In April 2020, the entire Fred. Olsen ocean fleet is expected to reunite for the 3rd time in the Madeiran capital of Funchal to celebrate ‘Four Fred.s in Funchal’! In September 2018, the fleet came together to mark the line’s 170th anniversary in shipping via the ‘Captains in Cadiz’ celebration.