Whether your a cruise virgin or a seasoned sea-goer, there’s something to be said about travelling somewhere that hasn’t been talked about – or Instagrammed – a hundred times over.
But where do you start when trying to uncover a secret cruise destination to satisfy your wanderlust?
Well, look no further, as Metro.co.uk has done all the hard work for you.
Here’s seven cruise spots off the beaten track, that are sure to score you some serious travel points.
1. Koper, Slovenia
Found along Slovenia’s blink-and-you’ll-miss-it Adriatic coastline, Koper can appear ominously industrial at first glance.
Give it a chance, though, and you’ll find a fountain aping the Rialto Bridge in Venice, a 12th-century cathedral and a delightful, red-roofed old town.
Optional tours from lines such as Norwegian, Viking and MSC Cruises might make for the Škocjan Caves, a Unesco World Heritage site containing wondrous subterranean waterfalls, or to Lipica, a stud farm for the exalted Lipizzaner horses.
Also visiting Italy, Croatia and Greece, nine nights from £1,089pp, full board; next departing May-October 2024, NCL.
2. Sir Bani Yas, United Arab Emirates
Served by Crystal and Seabourn, the island of Sir Bani Yas delivers a wildly different UAE experience to the skyscrapers, malls and theme parks of Dubai.
Beside three secluded hotels, you’ll find a ruined monastery from 600AD among 42 archaeological sites, plus a wildlife park-cum-nature reserve that houses giraffes, flamingos and gazelle-hunting cheetahs over 16 sq miles.
Some cruisers head straight to the isle’s private beach resort, however, enticed by 2,000 sun loungers on an artificial Arabian Gulf sandpit, with plenty of watersports.
Journeying from Dubai to Mumbai, 13 nights from £4,900pp, all-inclusive, including one speciality dining reservation; next departs Oct 26, Crystal Cruises.
3. Thursday Island, Australia
Part of the Torres Strait archipelago between northernmost Australia and Papua New Guinea, sleepy TI (as locals call it) provides plenty of distraction despite its diminutive size.
Shore excursions typically visit working pearl farms or World War II defensive sites, while it’s also possible to meet and learn about the indigenous Melanesian inhabitants.
Viking and Oceania both come here, using water taxis to get passengers to land.
Journeying between Bali and Sydney via Komodo, 13 nights from £4,499pp, full board, including specialty dining and wi-fi; next departs Dec 21, Oceania Cruises.
4. Molokai, US
If Maui and Oahu tend to be familiar names, this Hawaiian island is far less trodden.
As such, it makes perfect fodder for UnCruise Adventures, whose adventurous, yacht-based voyages routinely aim to respect local communities.
In the case of the island of Molokai, that translates into a privileged opportunity for guests to learn about island customs and culture directly from a local Kahuna – an elder.
You could also join a jam session, explore an old leper colony or lie on pure shores.
Also calling at Maui and the Big Island, seven nights from £4,559pp, all-inclusive; next departing Nov-May, Uncruise.
5. Tristan da Cunha
It might be a British territory, but you’ll discover that the South Atlantic speck of Tristan da Cunha is a tad different to Tranmere or Trafalgar Square.
At 1,500 miles from the next nearest human settlement of St Helena and lacking an airport, Earth’s most remote inhabited island is in fact a seriously complicated place to visit.
However, Silversea’s three-week voyages from Chile to Namibia via the Falkland Islands dock here.
During an 11-hour pause, passengers might go on village tours or volcano hikes. Eternal travel bragging rights are guaranteed.
Twenty-five nights from £14,300pp, all-inclusive, including all international flights, hotel stays and door-to-door transfers; next departs March 2, Silversea.
6. Bissagos Islands, Guinea-Bissau
The expedition cruise lines Hurtigruten and Ponant drop anchor at this jungly Unesco Biosphere Reserve during West African itineraries.
After time in Cape Verde, the former spends four days here — ample time to look for rare saltwater hippos, float around mangroves and monkey-patrolled rivers, meet the animist, matriarchal Bissago tribe and lie flat on uninhabited desert islands.
7. Ilhabela, Brazil
There are, traditionally, two types of activity available on Ilhabela, a large isle east of São Paulo.
The first is more energetic: hikes traversing the bumpy interior in order to admire cascades, wildlife, tropical rainforest, volcanoes – or all four.
Lasting around half an hour, a waterfall walk to Cachoeira do Paquetá is about the easiest.
Also calling at Rio de Janeiro on a round trip from Buenos Aires, eight nights from £599pp, full board, including port taxes; next departing January-March.