The Singapore Grand Prix and southeast Asia discovery
This extraordinary trip, which is offered exclusively to readers of The Times, is two fantastic holidays in one. First you will fly to Singapore to soak up all the drama and entertainment of the Singapore Grand Prix, where the world's top racing drivers will duel on the floodlit track around Marina Bay.
Then, from Singapore, you will embark on a four-night southeast Asia cruise, with stops at Kuala Lumpur and Phuket, on Royal Caribbean's Voyager of the Seas, which is recommended by Sue Bryant, cruise editor of The Sunday Times.
Watch the Singapore Grand Prix
Your luxury ship
- Three-night hotel stay in Singapore at the 5-star Royal Plaza on Scotts
- Two-day Bay Grandstand ticket to the Singapore Grand Prix
- Four-night full-board cruise on board Voyager of the Seas
- All flights and transfers
Day1Arrive in SingaporeSingapore, Singapore
Fly from the UK to Singapore where you'll be in pole position for the 2018 Singapore Grand Prix, won last year by F1 champion Lewis Hamilton. Flights based on London departure but regional flight departures are also available.
In Singapore, you will be staying at the 5-star Royal Plaza on Scotts for the next three nights.
Days2-3Watch the Singapore Grand PrixSingapore, Singapore
Hosts of the first ever night-time race in F1 history, the Singapore Grand Prix is one of the most glamorous events on the global sporting calendar. You will experience its electrifying atmosphere thanks to your two-day Bay Grandstand tickets. You will also be staying in five-star style in Singapore, at the Royal Plaza on Scotts.
Day4Set sail on Voyager of the SeasSingapore, Singapore
You will then enjoy a four-night full-board cruise with stops at Singapore, Kuala Lumpur and Phuket on Voyager of the Seas, which has been awarded an 8/10 rating by Sunday Times cruise editor Sue Bryant, who highlights the superb range of speciality restaurants, bars and leisure facilities. Read Sue's full review of the ship below.
Day5Explore Kuala LumpurKuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Today's stop is at Port Klang, the port for the Malaysian capital Kuala Lumpur.
Your stop today is the paradise island of Phuket - covered in verdant rainforest, dotted with historic temples and known for its famously beautiful beaches.
Day7At seaSingapore, Singapore
Enjoy the choice of dozens of restaurants and bars and a dizzying array of on-board entertaintment and leisure facilities as you spend a full day at sea.
Day8Flying homeSingapore, Singapore
After disembarking Voyager of the Seas in Singapore, you will fly back to the UK, arriving on the following day.
Voyager of the Seas
Review by Sue Bryant - cruise editor, The Sunday Times
Voyager of the Seas was one of the first ships really to change the face of cruising; nothing before had featured something as audacious as an ice rink, for example. The ship is packed with facilities; essentially, it's a floating resort, with entertainment for all the family, and is as much a feature of a cruise as the destinations it visits.
Royal Caribbean has kept the vessel up to date, not least with an $80m makeover in 2014 that saw a surf simulator added, as well as clever 'virtual balconies' in some of the inside cabins, giving a real-time view of outside.
Top tip: Want to see the captain and officers at work? Head for deck 11 where there's a window onto the ship's bridge - it's labelled 'Peek-a-boo bridge' on the deck plans.
Look & Feel
Voyager is a big, bright, action-packed ship. There's always something going on - live music on the Royal Promenade, movies by the pool, dance parties and parades - so it can feel noisy at times. Fellow passengers are a mix of couples and families, mixed nationalities but mainly Australians and Asian guests. Style on board is pretty informal. There is a dress code of sorts - some nights are designated 'formal' - but not everybody observes this and it's not strictly enforced.
Service is friendly and efficient. The crew are motivated to earn their tips, which are not included in your cruise fare. The youth staff are especially good. Be wary of heavy pressure selling in the spa.
In the evenings, the ship is a-buzz with music, colourful parades and high-tech shows.
Royal Caribbean is one of the most family-friendly cruise lines, with a superb youth programme.
- Spa & gym
- Room service
- Several restaurants
- Multiple bars
- Swimming pools
- Art gallery
- Photo studio
- Outdoor & 3D cinema
- Jogging track
- Mini golf
- Ice rink
- Surf simulator
- Sports court
- Nightclub & pub
- Wedding chapel
Accommodation falls into four broad categories: interior, ocean view, balcony cabins and suites, with variations within all of these. All cabins have minibar, TV, hairdryer and safe. Bathroom goodies are very basic, though. This is one ship where some of the inside cabins are more highly coveted than the outsides, thanks to clever virtual balconies, a high definition, floor to ceiling screen on one wall giving real-time views of what's going on outside. There are accessible cabins in most grades, including these virtual balconies. Categories include:
Inside | compact accommodation | 160 sq
Outside view | 160 sq ft - 328 sq ft | fixed windows
Balcony | 162 sq ft - 179 sq ft | balconies | sitting area
Suites | generous size | bathrooms with tubs | balconies
Royal Suite | Jacuzzi on the balcony | baby grand piano
Food & Drink
There are dozens of restaurants, bars and lounges, not least a British-inspired pub, the Pig & Whistle; the R Bar, offering classic cocktails; and the nautically-themed Schooner Bar, featuring regular quizzes. The food in the speciality restaurants tends to be better than the fare in the main dining room (which is nonetheless perfectly good) so do budget to try a couple of them.
Sapphire Dining Room | international cuisine |
Café Promenade | casual café | light breakfasts & snacks
Windjammer Café | buffet | casual | indoor/outdoor dining
Chops Grille | grill restaurant | steaks and seafood | smart
Giovanni's Table | Italian trattoria | Tuscan cuisine | casual
Izumi | Japanese | sushi, sashimi and hot dishes
Johnny Rocket's | 50s-style diner | themed | casual
Voyager of the Seas represents excellent value for money but it's very easy to find yourself shelling out for extras from the minute you board, so budget carefully.
Shore excursions are reasonably creative, with several incorporating an adventure theme, or revolving around food. Excursions are labelled to suit different interests, from family to culture, culinary, active, volunteering and challenge-based, involving friendly competition. A lot of the tours are accessible, too.
Voyager of the Seas is one of the few ships to offer high-speed internet, for which you pay, but it is genuinely fast, often better than what you'd have at home. Various drinks packages are available to create an all-inclusive holiday but you'll also pay extra for things like speciality dining (normal on cruise ships). Bar tabs can rocket with an 18% auto-gratuity added to every drink.