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Why smaller, boutique cruise ships are becoming so popular

Do you still associate cruising with massive ships, Broadway-style shows, 24-hour restaurants and water slides? It’s time to inform the misinformed.


This year, some 30 million people are expected to cruise and North American passengers grew by 9% last year over 2017. And, small ships are helping to drive the industry’s growth. Through 2022, 28 new ships that carry fewer than 300 passengers (representing nearly 35% of all new ships, most of them oceangoing) are on order for several cruise lines. River and small ship cruising continues to gain traction among travelers with a focus on the ever-expanding itineraries and destination experiences that reach far beyond walking and coach tours.


Small Ship Cruising Facts

- Small ships can cruise the world

- Small ship cruising is affordableIn spite of small size, small ships offer unique experiences onboard and on shore

- Small ship cruising differs from large ship cruising in ways big and small


The Gauguin is the flagship of Paul Gauguin Cruises and a small-ship cruiser’s dream. Accommodating just 332 guests, she delivers travelers to intimate ports inaccessible to larger cruise ships, all the while providing an onboard experience that is nothing short of luxurious.



Many sailings with Paul Gauguin include:

  • Optional PADI SCUBA diving program and certification

  • Watersports marina for complimentary kayaking and paddleboarding, and Zodiacs for optional dive excursions

  • A day at Motu Mahana, Paul Gauguin Cruises’ exclusive retreat off the coast of Taha’a, featuring Polynesian hospitality, snorkeling, watersports, bar service, and a delicious feast

  • Access to the exclusive, private beach located on a motu off the coast of Bora Bora, which offers an idyllic white-sand beach, excellent snorkeling, and bar service on French Polynesia itineraries


When you travel on board The Gauguin, you’ll enjoy:

  • Roundtrip airfare from Los Angeles or San FranciscoPresentations by onboard experts, and select sailings feature guest hosts

  • Choose from 7 to 14-night sailings from the rugged terrain of Rarotonga and coral reef-lined lagoon of Aitutaki to the jaw-dropping beauty of bucket-list mainstays Bora Bora and Moorea.


Call us for a virtual brochure to enjoy on your iPad or computer. Then call us at (408) 823-3807 to book your next adventure to the South Pacific.

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