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Celebrity Xpedition Review

4.0 / 5.0
181 reviews
See all photos
Editor Rating
Very Good

Celebrity Cruises' owner Royal Caribbean acquired Sun Bay 1, a small luxury vessel, built in 2001, and launched it in June 2004. In an innovative move, Celebrity's Xpedition sub-brand, created a new strata of up-market, premium-priced cruises and shore excursions offering travelers unusual cruise experiences in exotic destinations.

The start-up of the venture marked the arrival of the first mainstream cruise company to operate around the Galapagos Islands year-round. This option opened up Galapagos cruises, formerly the province of backpacking (or high-end) "adventure travelers." In essence, Xpedition combines the exotica of this type of adventure on a small vessel with some of the amenities and features -- high level of service and cuisine, for instance -- that Celebrity is known for.

And indeed, the joy of the Galapagos operation is that it combines Celebrity stylishness with local, "small ship" ambience. Crewmembers -- almost entirely Ecuadorian from the captain down -- are sunny, charming and tirelessly obliging. Destination-oriented features are incorporated into the onboard experience, such as a performance of Ecuadorian folklorique preceded by a highly personalized slide show featuring pictures of passengers meeting wildlife during the course of the trip (guests are presented as a complimentary CD to take home).

Better still, all drinks (except for certain premium brands) and tips are included in the price, so the atmosphere is more relaxed and sociable than that on the big Celebrity ships, where passengers are more reluctant to mingle because of potential embarrassment over who buys drinks for whom!


Offers nature exploration in more comfort than many expedition lines


Not the right ship for the latest Celebrity offerings or high-speed internet

Bottom Line

Soft-adventure ship sails the Galapagos all year with fantastic results


Passengers: 48
Crew: 64
Passenger to Crew: 0.75:1
Launched: 2001

Fellow Passengers

Apart from a couple of Canadian ex-pats, we were the only Britons on the inaugural cruise and, apart from the Latino family group the vast majority of our fellow passengers were cheerful, eco-oriented, middle-class Americans.

Celebrity Xpedition Dress Code

On a ship with such an outdoors-based itinerary, casual is obviously the order of the day, but guests seemed to enjoy changing out of their daytime swimmers and shorts and dressing fairly smartly for dinner.

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More about Celebrity Xpedition

Where does Celebrity Xpedition sail from?

Celebrity Xpedition departs from

Where does Celebrity Xpedition sail to?

Celebrity Xpedition cruises to

How much does it cost to go on Celebrity Xpedition?

Cruises on Celebrity Xpedition start from $5,311 per person.

Is Celebrity Xpedition a good ship to cruise on?

Celebrity Xpedition won 26 awards over the years.
Celebrity Xpedition Cruiser Reviews

A Trip of a Lifetime!

I cannot say enough good things about the crew and naturalists aboard the Celebrity Xpedition. My husband and I were traveling together, and every experience was absolutely first rate.Read More

oneFirst Time Cruiser

Age 57s

Absolutely first class

Sad to end the week, happy to have had the experience of Celebrity Xpedition.Read More

couple2-5 Cruises

Age 71s

Do not hesitate to book Galapagos on Xpedition

Then two hours at the Baltra airport before boarding the Celebrity Avianca charter. Transfers to and through the airport again were seemless thanks to Celebrity logistics.Read More
Beyond the Sunrise

many10+ Cruises

Age 60s

Amazing wildlife in a week on the Xpedition

Upon arrival in Baltra, we were taken by buses to a site on the ocean were we picked up our zodiacs that took us to the Xpedition.Read More

many10+ Cruises

Age 70s

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