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5 Best Cruises for Paranormal Enthusiasts 2011-2012

A while back I was asked if I knew of any cruises for paranormal enthusiasts. At the time Gothic Cruise was really the only one I could come up with.

There was also another one I didn’t mention: Supernatural Caribbean Cruises. My friend Jade reminded me about it the other day. The reason I didn’t include it before is every time I check their page they’re on hiatus from further bookings. Which is a shame. Their example itineraries always look promising. However, they say more info is coming soon. I’ll keep checking on them.

This week I did come across an actual paranormal cruise, though. It’s listed below along with four others that, while not paranormal-themed, offer excellent itineraries with stops at haunted ports galore. 

  1. 6-day Paranormal Cruise on the Carnival Freedom: This cruise is being offered by My Paradise Planner. It sets sail from Ft. Lauderdale on October 30, 2011 and will be celebrating Halloween on the high seas. (Costume party and everything. Trick or treat!) The haunted ports of call include haunted Key West (with a chance to see Robert the Doll), and Jamaica (with an opportunity to tour Rose Hall Plantation, home of the White Witch). Grand Cayman is also among the ports, and sort of a ghost-free day. But you might run into the devil there. It is, after all, home to Hell.  Paranormal investigators will be on hand to teach you their tricks during the day at sea too.
  2. 12-day British Isles Roundtrip from London on Crown Princess: Ports include Guernsey (St. Peter Port), England; Holyhead, Wales; Dublin, Ireland; Belfast, Northern Ireland; Glasgow (Greenock), Scotland; Kirkwall (Orkney Islands), Scotland; Edinburgh (South Queensferry), Scotland; Inverness/Loch Ness (Invergordon), Scotland; Paris/Normandy (Le Havre), France. For me this is a WOW! cruise. Wales, Dublin, Edinburgh, Loch Ness, Normandy…all places I want to go. They’re all loaded with haunted places. I only know for sure I’d want to look for Nessie and see Omaha Beach. It would be tough deciding where else to visit while in the other ports. Maybe the Hellfire Club in Dublin and Dublin Castle if there was time for both. Edinburgh Castle and a tour of the vaults if that was at all possible. And to do this via a cruise? WOW! (Did I already say that?) It’s my new dream cruise.
  3. 10-day Canada/New England on Holland America: Ships sail in September from New York City and head to Quebec City, Quebec, Canada. Ports include: Newport, R.I. (there are a ton of mansions but Belcourt is the one most open about its ghosts); Gloucester, MA (from here you can take excursions to Salem, but Gloucester has ghosts, sea monsters and UFO histories of its own); Bar Harbor, ME; Halifax, Nova Scotia (a surprisingly super haunted port town with a tragic past, including three cemeteries with Titanic victims and a haunted Citadel); Sydney, Canada; Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island; Saguenay, Canada (which has winter ghosts and mummies when the snow falls); Quebec City, Quebec. You spend a night in port in Quebec, which gives you a chance to take one of the city’s ghost tours. But just walking around the historic center with the Chateau Frontenac (also rumored to be haunted) reigning over it all makes it very easy to feel the city’s dead still live on. Also, Halifax isn’t the only port with connections to Titanic. You’ll find its legacy still haunts many of the places you visit on this cruise. (Note, you can also do this itinerary in reverse, meaning you embark from Quebec City and disembark in New York.)
  4. 7 or 10-day Wine Country Cruises in 2012: Celebrity’s 10-night Wine Cruise and Princess’s 7-day Wine Country Cruise offer paranormal enthusiasts (and wine lovers) a unique opportunity to sail and experience some of the Pacific Coast’s most haunted ports (and perhaps vineyards?). Celebrity’s embarks from Vancouver, B.C., Canada (just go for a walk in the Gaslamp District and see if you don’t feel the spirits, or stay in the chateau-styled Hotel Vancouver and look for its “lady in red”) and disembarks in San Diego, California (it’s best known haunt is perhaps the Whaley House, but it also boasts a haunted Gaslamp Quarter, as well as the Hotel Del Coronado, which are also noteworthy haunts to check out). Ports along the way include: Nanaimo, British Columbia; Victoria, British Columbia (the haunt you’d want to check out here is Craigdarroch Castle); Seattle, Washington (if time was short in port, the best plan would be to head to Pike Place Market); San Francisco, California (you’ll find places like Moss Beach Distillery and mansions like Atherton and Whittier to explore in this ghost storied city); Monterey, California (most cruisers will flock to the nearby vineyards but ghosts can be found at the Monterey Hotel and the Del Monte Hotel); and Catalina Island, California (spooky stays and eerie eateries abound on Crescent Street). There’s also an 8-night option, which embarks from San Diego and disembarks in Vancouver. There’s no stops in Monterey, Seattle, or Nanaimo, British Columbia, but the rest are the same with the addition of  Astoria, Oregon (which would give theater loving jaunters a chance to visit Liberty Theater, where a woman’s ghost is said to haunt the bathroom). Princess’s cruise embarks from Los Angeles and disembarks in Vancouver. Ports along the way are similar to Celebrity’s, except instead of stopping at Catalina Island it docks in Santa Barbara, then heads to San Francisco, Astoria, Oregon, Seattle, Washington, and Victoria, B.C.
  5. 12-Night Australia/New Zealand on Celebrity Century: I ranked Australia as one of the Top 5 Countries with the Best Paranormal Tourism. Even though New Zealand wasn’t on that list, it’s haunts are nothing to sneeze at. This is a great cruise for paranormal enthusiasts looking to explore haunted places Down Under. The cruise departs from Sydney, Australia, where paranormal enthusiasts might like to take the Rocks Ghost Tour or check out the haunted Manly Quarantine Station (better known simply as Q Station) before the ship sails. Ports include Hobart, Tasmania (home of the Penitentiary Chapel Ghost Tour); Milford Sound, New Zealand; Doubtful Sound; Dusky Sound; Dunedin, New Zealand (Larnach’s Castle is rumored to be haunted by a Victoria-era ghost); Christchurch, New Zealand; Wellington, New Zealand (it’s said a phantom haunts the St. James Theatre and Opera House); Napier, New Zealand; Tauranga, New Zealand; Bay Of Islands, New Zealand; and Auckland, New Zealand (where you’ll find Spookers, New Zealand’s only haunted attraction theme park, as well as Auckland Ghost Tours).
Courtney Mroch
Courtney Mroch, otherwise known as HJ's Ambassador of Dark and Paranormal Tourism, is an author, traveler, and ghost enthusiast. When she's not writing, jaunting, or planning her next trip, it's a safe bet you'll find her in one of three places: on a tennis court somewhere, on a yoga mat somewhere, or watching a horror movie somewhere. She currently resides in Nashville, Tennessee.

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