(2:05 p.m. EST) — Beginning summer 2016, Celebrity Cruises will offer “Chef’s Market Discoveries,” culinary-themed shore excursions led by the onboard chef. The excursions allow passengers to visit markets, meet farmers and local producers, and follow through with a special meal back onboard utilizing ingredients from the day’s purchases. Visit a fish market in Iceland, then join a fisherman’s cookery; visit a mozzarella farm and select lemons for limoncello in Naples; learn how to pair vodka with food in St. Petersburg; or visit Crete’s botanical gardens to sample and learn about the region’s indigenous herbs and native dishes. To start, the tours will only be available on European itineraries, but the line plans to roll out the series in the Caribbean, South America, Asia and Australia. Fees will depend on the itinerary.
While Viking Ocean Cruises and Seabourn Cruise Line feature very similar tours and meals led by the executive chef onboard, Celebrity is one of the first non-luxury lines to join the trend.