Enjoy a long weekend break touring France and Belgium on an American cruise ship.

Independence of the Seas, a firm favourite with Brits, will embark on a three-night mini cruise from Southampton in mid-October.

Step aboard on Saturday 21st October 2017 and quickly slip into holiday mode. This ship, which returns to Southampton year after year, is a firm favourite with Brits. It is easy to see why. As a family-friendly ship, it has something for everyone. It might be too cold for the water splash park out on deck, but the kids will love the children’s club instead. Watch brave participants tackle the surfing simulator, or head up the rock climbing wall for unrivalled views.

Expect world class entertainment in the theatre, and you may even be treated to a spectacular performance show on the onboard ice rink. For relaxation, head straight to the spa.

Food choices are excellent, with something for everyone. Upgrade to dinner at a speciality restaurant for something a little more special. You will find plenty of bars on the ship too, as well as a very popular British pub, located on the spacious indoor promenade.

American ships boast a mind-boggling array of cabins and Independence of the Seas is no different. Stay in a budget inside cabin or splash out on a memorable cruise in a luxurious suite.

With all the excitement of the ship, it is easy to forget the itinerary. Three nights at sea means you get two ports of call on this itinerary – Le Havre and Zeebrugge. Le Havre is considered the gateway to Paris, but brace yourself for more than two hours on a coach there and back. Royal Caribbean sells a range of optional shore excursions to Paris, or you could make your own way there. Alternatively, stay in the small and quaint city of Le Havre. Explore its gardens, parks, grand buildings, and shops.

Zeebrugge is the gateway to Bruges or Belgium, and again, Royal Caribbean offers a range of optional shore excursions to both. Instead, you could catch the train to Bruges on your own, or explore the town adjacent to the port.

Early on Tuesday morning you will dock back in Southampton.


  • Make a long weekend of it, with this cruise that departs on a Saturday and returns on Tuesday morning.
  • Tick off France and Belgium. Perhaps book one of the optional shore excursions to Paris, Bruges, or Brussels, or explore on your own.
  • Alternatively, enjoy the ship’s facilities such as the ice rink, FlowRider surfing simulator, spa, or the swimming pools.

The Route

The map above shows point-to-point lines which may cross land. Do not worry, your cruise ship will stay on water all the way! Mapping is approximate and the markers are based on city locations and not necessarily the ports. The itinerary for this mini cruise is:

1Saturday 21st October 2017Southampton4.30pm
2Sunday 22nd October 2017Zeebrugge7am to 5pm
3Monday 23rd October 2017Le Havre8am to 10pm
4Tuesday 24th October 2017Southampton5.30am

Times are estimates, and itineraries are subject to change. Occasionally, cruise lines alter itineraries based on the weather or prevailing events at the time of the cruise.


This ship has sailed

Sorry, the ship has sailed on this mini cruise. There are many more mini cruises to choose from though.

More choices

Not quite right? Here are some other suggestions that may suit better.

Last updated on 1st May 2017 by David Fiske

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