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USA Cruises and Canada Cruises

New York at dawn is alive with promise from the decks of an inbound liner, just as it was in the days of mass migration and regular Atlantic crossings by sea. Sailing across that vast, relentless ocean is still a timeless adventure; a sentimental journey fuelled by champagne, dollars and nostalgia.

Boston's patrician precincts and its famous freedom trail form a potent appetiser to Philadelphia, Washington D.C and other east coast cities that were the very cradle of the American Revolution. Perma-tanned and always smiling, Miami is more revolutionary in terms of cutting edge nightlife, the see- and-be-seen Mediterranean lifestyle of South Beach, and famed for the fleets of giant white cruise ships that glide down its palm lined causeway on their way to the pearls of the Caribbean.

LA is glitzier, and certainly brash; while San Francisco is a master class in elegance and style. San Diego has fabulous old Spanish architecture, dazzling beaches, and the best year round climate in the USA.

Kissed by endless Pacific surf, the Hawaiian Islands are jagged mountain ranges swathed in a million shades of green, shearing out of the ocean ringed by wide, welcoming beaches. Pearl Harbour is poignant and a timely reminder of a turbulent past, a sombre counter point to the aloha lifestyle played out along the high rise fringed beaches of Waikiki, with their idly dancing palm trees, grass skirts, leis and haunting hula music. And, if anything, the climate is even more dreamy and alluring than the visual smorgasbord all around you.

Alaska offers beauty of a different kind; stark, pristine and natural. Vast tracts of ice calve into still, silent waters with a thunderous roar. Bald eagles wheel silently above miles of impassive pine forests. Spray sodden grizzly bears lurk on slippery rocks in the hope of catching leaping shoals of salmon. Deep, still and silent fjords reflect the glow of the almost endless summer sun at the height of the season. The contrast with cutting edge cities like Seattle and Vancouver, with its world famous coffee culture, could hardly be more profound in this stunning natural playground, where kayaks and seaplanes co-exist along the fringes of former gold towns that still echo with the memories of pan handlers and gaudy, honky tonk saloons and their 'madams'.

New England in the fall; world famous resorts like Newport have yachting and cool jazz as a mellow backdrop to riotous shades of rust brown and golden leaves that fringe the edges of the mighty St. Lawrence seaway, and succulent Maine lobster is arguably the best in the world. Mighty granite parapets line still, silent waters that yield up cities like fairytale Quebec, jutting out on a promontory like something from a Walt Disney film. Indian summers are not at all uncommon here, with the temperature often warm enough to acquire a suntan even in early October.

Such staggering diversity can offer literally something for everyone; from connoisseurs of nature to hedonistic, dyed in the wool beach babies to lovers of bustling, contemporary city life. From the sublime to the sophisticated, this vast, rolling continent really is many worlds in one.