Costa Cruises Major Cruise Liners and Agents

Visit their site http://www.costacruise.com

Costa, born in 1860 as Costa Crociere, is one of several cruise companies now owned by the massive Carnival Corporation. But like Carnival's other lines, Costa cruises have their own personality: in this case, cheerful, youthful and European like its food, Costa's style has a distinctive Italian flavour. The fleet, enlarged by recent additions to about a dozen ships, is rated in market terms as 'standard', but that standard is generally good. However the sophistication of its service varies somewhat the elegant contemporary design, for example, is counterbalanced by the inclusion in some cases of a stated required amount in the tipping envelopes placed in cabins (not an uncommon practice, but that's no excuse).

There's plenty of entertainment with plenty of decibels, and its bars and atriums are pleasant spaces to be in. Some boats, such as the Costa Mediterranea and Victoria, stand out. Costa's décor is often very attractive the aforementioned Victoria houses a four deck observation lounge with fountain and see through elevator and a seven deck atrium topped off by a clear dome. Features on the flagship Costa Atlantica, built in 2000, include 12 decks named after Fellini films, a 10 deck atrium, and a replica of the Caffe Florian in Venice. Costa is also unique among cruise lines in having a chapel aboard every ship handy if you want to renew your wedding vows or go to Roman Catholic Mass.

The food is not generally thought to be a special feature of Costa cruises, although its Italian specialties are popular and it's possible, as with most cruise ships now, to dine by candlelight on certain nights. Ship cabins are generally of a good size and have the facilities you would expect of a decent hotel room en suite bathroom, telephone, satellite TV, and air conditioning. Because these are mostly medium to large ships there are several classes of cabin including ones with private balconies and suites which would be useful for people who want or for example in the case of young families need more space. And, like most larger ships, there are spas and shopping facilities although on the older ships of the fleet such as the Costa Europa the spa is quite small.

Costa operates a variety of routes in the Caribbean (both east and west), the Mediterranean, Europe and South America, including Brazil, Argentina and Uruguay (home of some of the best ice cream in the world, apparently). The line also visits Russia and the Baltic states, and there are transatlantic crossings taking in destinations such as the Bahamas, Antilles and Canary Islands. For more information try the Costa website,, where you can also pre book excursions (although it's usually better not to pre book all your excursions) and find special deals and upgrades.