Want to travel from New York to Australia and back without ever getting on an airplane? It'll be doable in 2017 for those willing to hop on a Cunard ocean liner.
The storied line plans to send its flagship Queen Mary 2 on an epic, 132-day voyage from the Big Apple to Australia that also includes stops in Africa, Asia and Europe.
The unusual itinerary will kick off Jan. 3, 2017 with a trans-Atlantic crossing to
Southampton, England followed by a trip down the west coast of Africa to Namibia and South Africa. From there, the ship will head east across the Indian Ocean to Australia for an extensive stay that includes 14 port calls.
The Queen Mary 2 will return from Australia via Asia, where it'll stop in Vietnam, China, South Korea, Japan, Thailand,
Hong Kong, Singapore and Malaysia before turning back west to Sri Lanka and then Dubai. The ship then will pass through the Gulf of Aden to the Red Sea for stops in Egypt and Jordan before transiting the Suez Canal to the Mediterranean. Stops in Italy and Portugal will be followed by a return to Southampton before a final leg back to New York.
The Queen Mary 2 will travel over 37,000 nautical miles in all during the voyage and visit 33
UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
The sailing will include nine maiden calls for the 11-year-old Queen Mary 2 including
Le Port, Réunion; Kangaroo Island, Australia; Hobart, Australia; Bandar Seri Begawan, Brunei; Keelung, Taiwan; Jeju Island, South Korea; Busan, South Korea; and Busselton and Port Arthur, Australia. The latter two are firsts for the entire Cunard fleet.
Fares for the sailing start at $22,399 per person. Shorter segments of the sailing will be available at a lower price.
Cunard this year is celebrating its 175th anniversary with a series of events involving the Queen Mary 2 including a historic meet-up with its two sister vessels,
Queen Victoria and Queen Elizabeth, in Liverpool, England. Scroll through the carousel below for a look at the three vessels together: