State of Mind – opportunity for you!

Happy Thursday Hidden Gem Travel community! And happy December – the holiday season is in full swing. Is your to-do list too long or manageable? My list is condensed as I have a business trip to London before the holiday week. I’m looking forward to experiencing London decked out for the holidays! Of course, I’ll make time to do some Christmas shopping – how can I resist?

Since we are all very busy this month, I’ll keep this newsletter short and more of a PSA. If you’ve noticed in the news, cruise vacations are experiencing a huge boom right now. Personally, I love a vacation on the water – be it on an ocean or a river. There have been some fantastic promotions lately, and clients have been jumping on the opportunity to either try a cruise vacation for the first time or book another based on how much they loved the experience last time.

Schedule a call with me to discuss which style of vacation on the water is right for you. In previous newsletters, I’ve written about the different kinds of cruises (it’s not just the enormous ships you see in the Miami port), and they’re an excellent value right now especially. You can see multiple countries in one trip  – heads up if you have a long travel bucket list:

  • Ocean (anywhere you want to go; right now Japan is HOT)
  • River (Europe, Asia, South American options)
  • Expedition (polar included)
  • Yacht-style (and size)

Read on for the scoop about the new kid in town in ocean cruising, Explora Journeys…

Ocean State of Mind

Explora Journeys is the new kid in town in luxury ocean cruising, and they’re redefining the ocean experience. Their Ocean State of Mind is inspired by the sea — joy, discovery, relaxation, and energy. Explora Journeys offers bespoke experiences, exquisite onboard offerings, and immersive destinations while serving as your elegant home at sea. Check out this VIDEO to see for yourself.  

Where can you travel with Explora?

  • The Caribbean & Central America
  • US & Canada Atlantic & Pacific Coast & Hawaii
  • Mediterranean & Western Europe
  • More to come!

Enjoy a spacious ocean-front suite with a private terrace, nine inclusive culinary experiences, our ocean-inspired wellness and fitness program, and much more.

Interested? ACT FAST – LIMITED TIME OFFER – UP TO 50% VALUE SAVINGS on selected itineraries.
Book by 11 December 2023

Guest receive a myriad of inclusions:

• In-suite welcome bottle of champagne upon arrival

• A bottle of wine and a bottle of spirit of the guests’ choice upon arrival

• Authentic, cultured, and intuitive service from our team of hospitality experts

• Nine distinct culinary experiences, including In-Suite Dining

• Unlimited beverages, fine wines and premium spirits, specialty coffees, teas, and soft drinks available anytime, including in-suite mini-bar.

• Access to the spa thermal area

• Wellbeing and fitness programs on board and at the destinations

• All on-board gratuities

• Complimentary Wi-Fi throughout the ship

• Shuttle services from port to city center (where required/available)

Personally, I’m ready to experience Explora as soon as possible! I know it will be an amazing experience. Why don’t you join me? It’s the ULTIMATE holiday gift.

💎Hidden Gem Tip: “Wave season” is here early – typically it begins in January but it’s already begun with fantastic promotions from the best suppliers worldwide, including cruises and small group land tours.

Inspired? Reach out to me now to get your questions answered and begin the planning process.

Wishing you unforgettable travel adventures,


NEW Section: Travel News You Can Use

💎 Hidden Gem Tip: When is the best time to book a ‘cruise’ vacation?

The answer to this question can change based on demand and other factors.  However, there are three windows to keep in mind: when the cruise itinerary is first made available (usually well over a year in advance – 2025 cruises are coming out now),  Black Friday weekend, and during ‘wave season’ yearly in January and February.

If you are interested in a cruise vacation of any type (see above), let me know and I will track it for you.  BONUS – often I can get you perks like onboard credit through my preferred partner status.  

The photo just above is from my balcony on the Azamara Mediterranean cruise earlier this year.  The early morning light over Monaco was gorgeous!!


Click the photo to view my Virtuoso webpage & DIY hotel booking service OR…

Email me to ask about my exclusive preferred partner perks with the hotels above. 

Follow my Facebook/Instagram pages this week for more travel inspiration: or Instagram:

Make your own Wanderlist for 2024! As a reminder, Wanderlist is an online portal where you can research, explore, and create shareable lists of destinations and experiences. Share your list with me so I can make it happen for you. Check it out here:  

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Hi, I'm Susan Wilson

I’m the founder of Hidden Gem Travel Consulting. As your personal travel advisor, I craft custom worldwide itineraries that astound and inspire you.


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