From the Waterfront: 10 Destinations Best Viewed From the Sea

***This is post was contributed by Cruise Deals.


Some places impress from an aerial approach: Barra beach runway in Scotland, the dramatic mountainscapes of Queenstown, New Zealand and the sea-circled coastline of the south of France, to name a few. Others are more impressive if you arrive on the deck of a cruise ship, ferry or pleasure boat. Here are ten of the best (Jolly Rodger and telescope optional).


Hong Kong

The mist-enshrouded islands dappling Hong Kong’s harbor approach will thrill anyone who has seen Enter the Dragon. You can catch this vibrant Asian city with Royal Caribbean cruises, as the operator (quite rightly) has granted it a well-deserved place on some of their itineraries.



Boasting a lengthier coastline than the remainder of the USA combined this vast and beautiful place can be reached by cruise ship and ferry. Approach from the ocean and your breath will be snatched away by sparkling glaciers and dramatic skylines. Wrap up warm and venture out on deck, and you may be welcomed by some local wildlife including dolphins, seals and basking sharks.


Buenos Aires

Visit the Paris of the South by sea and learn to tango, dine on steak, and look out for the street art and bright colors of La Boca barrio. Buenos Aires’s port is easily recognizable from the realist paintings of Quinquela Martín, and at night this bustling commercial hub transforms into a twinkling blanket of lights to greet travelers fresh off the boat.



View of the Harbor Bridge in Sydney Australia


Approaching one of Sydney’s cruise terminals delivers a jackpot combination of Australia’s iconic landmarks. Harbor Bridge, the Opera House and the city’s stratified skyline are meant to be seen from the sea. However, it is not only Sydney that can offer you a quintessential view of the Australian landmarks. One can also add Warrnambool, Victoria to the list. Warrnambool, located at the end of the Great Ocean Road that displays nature’s diversity at its best (from forests to rivers to ancient volcanoes and rugged coastlines), can offer you memories of a lifetime. So, if Australia is on your travel list, then you can try out a great ocean road stay at Warrnambool to treat your soul with iconic scenarios.

Panama Canal

Traversing the continents of North and South America to connect the Pacific to the Atlantic, this man-made wonder is a fine cruise destination, which can tick off Florida, the Caribbean, Mexico and the rain forests of Costa Rica as stops on the itinerary.

Cinq Terre

This UNESCO World Heritage site is a tumble of colorful villages scattering down Italy’s coastline like a fistful of LEGO bricks. Given its white knuckle access roads the best and most scenic approach is by passenger ferry, which travels to four of its five villages.


The Norwegian Fjords

Setting off into the Arctic on a cruise might be a chilly enterprise, but the rewards are vast, with endless days, majestic cliffs and the chance of spotting the Northern Lights all travel pay offs worthy of investment.


The Seychelles

Volcanic island landscapes, verdant rain forests, diving and fishing: its twinkling azure waters are part of what makes this place paradise, and worthy of further exploration.


Istanbul, Turkey

It might be classified as a Mediterranean cruise, but this exotic destination could not be a more enticing fusion of East meets West wonders. Approach from the sea and you’ll be greeted by the city’s characteristic minarets, domes, and the call to prayer.



If only for the excuse to invest in some dapper boating attire, cruising to Bermuda is highly recommended. If shorts aren’t your thing, there’s always the pastel pink beach, the cozy climate and the eclectic culture to fall back on.


For centuries, humankind has explored by way of the high seas. Make like your ancestors and find new ways to travel the world. It can be your oyster if only you choose to view it from a fresh perspective once in a while.



Image by Linh_rOm, used under Creative Commons license.


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14 responses to “From the Waterfront: 10 Destinations Best Viewed From the Sea”

  1. Actually, I did get to see Victoria Harbour in Hong Kong from the deck of an Azamara cruise boat. (Azamara is a Royal Caribbean brand). I agree that any visit to Hong Kong is enhanced by seeing it from the water.

    • NOMADICTEXAN says:

      Thank you for your thoughts. I haven’t been to Hong Kong since before the new airport was built. The old arrival swing through the mountain pass, used to scared the dickens out of me! Thanks.

  2. Erick says:

    Singapore my friend. Coolest harbor I’ve seen.

    • NOMADICTEXAN says:

      I loved Singapore, but it was a long time ago when I visited (1973). Probably before you were even born. The one factor that stood out was the coffee. It tasted like chocolate and I couldn’t drink enough of it. Of course, after two straight months of working 12-15 hour days and only one day off I needed all the coffee I could drink. It was also where the other buyer and I decided we had had enough and flew home 20 pounds lighter than when we started the trip 60 days earlier. For a 23 year old though it was eye opening and where I got my passion for traveling. Man that was a long time ago!

  3. Ralph says:

    We have visited Istanbul and Buenos Aires on your list. Istanbul from the water is fantastic with cruises and ferries galore. Buenos Aires from the water not so much. The River is ugly and there isnt much opportunity to go out on it. Perhaps the city is beautiful from the water but opportunities to see it are definitely limited. I’m eager to esperience more of your recommendations.

    • NOMADICTEXAN says:

      I appreciate your thoughts and as you probably know cities and sights can look completely different from one day to the next, given the weather and other factors.Thank you for your kind words and if you have subscribed please feel free to follow my adventures at Have a great week!

  4. You’ve made some great choices in this post! I’ve never been to Istanbul but imagine the view as you approach it is historic in and of itself!

    • NOMADICTEXAN says:

      Thank you kindly for stopping by my blog and leaving a comment. Thanks but I cannot take the credit. This was a “Sponsored” post.

  5. Sicorra says:

    I love cruising and Alaska is definitely the next location on my list. We did a cruise through the Panama Canal in 2008 and it was absolutely lovely.

    • NOMADICTEXAN says:

      I am so jealous. I bet your trip through the Panama Canal was fantastic! I would love to do that one day. Hopefully you will get to the Alaskan Cruse in the near future. Thanks for stopping by my blog! I appreciate your comment!

  6. Linda Bibb says:

    Singapore is a fabulous port city and should be on this list. But technically I’m not sure the Panama Canal could qualify, the best views are not from the sea, they’re all during the 8 or so hours while in transit, and that’s fresh water. 😉

    • NOMADICTEXAN says:

      Thank you for your comment. I must have missed the email notifying me of your thought. I apologize and normally like to respond immediately. I haven’t been to Singapore in quite a while, but really need to go back again. I still can recall their fabulous chocolate flavored coffee and could drink it all day long! Thanks for stopping by and I am really sorry I didn’t see this earlier.

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