Scenic Eclipse vs Silversea

Compare ships, pricing, destinations, onboard facilities and shore excursions between Scenic Eclipse and Silversea Cruises.

Scenic Eclipse   vs   Silversea Cruises

The Low Down

Scenic Eclipse Cruises Silversea Cruises
Where do they cruise?
What type of ships do they have?
Small Cruise Ship
Small & Expedition Ships
How many passengers are on board?
228 (200 in the Arctic & Antarctica)
100 – 608
What type of cruise line are they?
Luxury
Luxury
What are they known for?
  • Adventures in all-inclusive luxury
  • An Expert Discovery Team
  • Helicopter & submarine experiences
  • Luxury Cruises and Expeditions
  • 1000+ destinations
  • Overnight & late port departures
What is the average cost per day?
  • Balcony : $1,363
  • Suite: $2,301
  • Oceanview: $889
  • Balcony : $1,140
  • Suite: $2,075
Are fares all inclusive?
Yes
Silversea positions themselves as an all-inclusive line. However, there are some benefits that incur charges, such as shore excursions which are not included on classic cruises, and some specialty restaurants where surcharges apply.
Are gratuities included?
Yes
Yes
Are there any additional gratuities payable on board?
No
Additional gratuities are payable on spa treatments.
Can I get any reciprocal loyalty club benefits?
You may choose to have your Scenic trip count towards your Evergreen Explorer tier status. However, trips with Evergreen Tours or Emerald Waterways cannot count towards your Scenic Club tier status.
No. Venetian Club only.
What is the onboard currency?
USD
USD
What language is spoken on board?
English
English
Who cruises with them?
  • Well-travelled active guests
  • Keen explorers who like extra comforts
  • Cosmopolitan world travellers
  • Travellers seeking to explore remote locations
  • Largest markets are US, UK, AUS & NZ
What is the average passenger age?
Primarily 45-64
Primarily 50+
Are they good for families?
Not for those with young children. Scenic does not recommend luxury expedition style cruising for children under 12 years.
Children are accepted from 6+ months (12+ months on select cruises/ships). Children under the age of five years are unable participate in any expedition excursions or embarkations that require the use of a Zodiac. An adult family member will be required to remain on board with their child(ren) during Zodiac excursions.
Are there children’s programs?
No
Only on Silver Muse which has an activities room for children when 12 or more children sail.
Is there childcare and/or babysitting?
No
No
What are the accommodation options?
All-Veranda Suites
Oceanview & Balcony Suites. Categories vary between Classic ships and Expedition ships.
Are there accessible staterooms?
No
  • Classic Cruises: Accessible cabins are available.
  • Expedition Cruises: Accessible suites available on Silver Cloud only.
Are shore excursions included?
Yes. Complimentary. Helicopter and submarine excursions incur additional charges.
  • Classic Cruises: No. Shore excursions are offered at additional cost.
  • Expedition Cruises: Yes. All zodiac, sea and shore excursions are included and there are optional shore excursions for purchase.
What types of onboard activities are available for free?
Lectures and educations programs are offered on board, along with a wellness program complete with meditation sessions and yoga and Pilates classes.
  • Classic Cruises: Full-scale production shows; classical soloists, to cultural entertainment and feature films.
  • Expedition Cruises: Onboard expert lectures and films.
Are there any onboard activities that I need to pay for?
No
No
Is there free evening entertainment?
Yes.
Yes
Is there any paid evening entertainment?
No
No
Are there complimentary dining options?
Yes
Yes
Are there specialty restaurants?
Yes. Complimentary.
Yes. Meals in La Dame, Seishin Restaurant and Kaiseki Restaurant attract a charge.
Are there dining packages for purchase?
No
No
Are non-alcoholic beverages included?
Yes. Freshly squeezed juices, soft drinks, non-alcoholic beer and cider, mocktails, specialty teas and coffees.
Yes. Soft drinks, water, tea and coffee
Are alcoholic beverages included?
Yes. All drinks on board are included except for a very small number of rare, fine and vintage wines, champagnes and spirits.
Yes. Premium wines and spirits and mini bar is stocked with guest preferences. Some premium champagne, premium wine and spirit selections are available to purchase at extra cost.
Can I purchase a beverage package?
No
No
Is there room service?
Yes. Butler service provided for every guest.
Yes. 24 hour in suite dining is an option and there is a butler service for every suite.
Is there Wi-Fi on board?
Yes. Complimentary.
Yes. Complimentary Wi-Fi for every suite for 1 device at a time. Premium suites are offered Wi-Fi for 2 devices at a time.
Can I purchase Wi-Fi packages?
No
Yes. Upgraded premium access packages are available for purchase.
Is there a Spa?
Yes. Access is complimentary.
Yes
Are spa and salon services available?
Yes. Charges Apply.
Yes. Charges Apply.
Is there a gym?
Yes
Yes. All ships offer a Fitness Centre. These differ in size and equipment between ships.
Are there group fitness classes?
Yes. Complimentary wellness activities are offered in the yoga and Pilates studio.
Yes. Circuit training is complimentary while Pilates and Yoga classes may be offered and incur charges. Services many differ between Classic and Expedition ships.
Is there personal training available?
No
Yes. Charges Apply.
Is there a self-service laundry?
Yes. Complimentary.
Yes. Complimentary.
Is a laundry service available?
Yes. Charges Apply.
Yes. Charges Apply.
Is there a casino on board?
No
On classic ships only.

Please note there may be additional inclusions and privileges for select stateroom and suite guests or select loyalty member tiers. Activities and entertainment vary by ship, itinerary and departure and are a guide only.

The Verdict

Which ships will suit me best?

The Scenic Eclipse Discovery Yachts

The Scenic Eclipse (joined by Scenic Eclipse II in 2021/2022) is marketed as the ‘World’s First Discovery Yacht’. It accommodates 228 passengers (200 in the polar regions) in all-inclusive luxury. Guests will find a generous number of amenities that you may not expect from a small ship, and more than you would usually find on expedition vessels.

Among the Scenic Eclipse facilities is a theatre to host shows and lectures, a gym, yoga and Pilates studio, indoor and outdoor pools, and the 550 m² (5,920 ft²) Spa Sanctuary complete with saunas and steam rooms. There is a selection of lounges and bars to relax in, including the Observation Lounge equipped with telescopes to take in the views and spot wildlife along the way.

There is up to 10 dining experiences available on the Scenic Eclipse, from Elements main restaurant to the Yacht Club poolside grill, Asian fusion, sushi and Teppanyaki at Koko’s, French fare at Lumière, and relaxed all day grazing at Azure Bar & Café. There is also in-suite dining available 24/7, a cooking school on board, and an invitation-only degustation experience hosted at Chef’s Table @ Elements.

Along with plentiful public spaces, Scenic Eclipse has 114 suites all equipped with a private veranda or terrace. Each has a separate sleeping zone and lounge area, and sizes vary from 32 m² (344 ft²) in a Veranda Suite to 195 m² (2,099 ft²) in the Owner’s Penthouse Suite. Owner’s Penthouse Suites can also be combined with a Spa Suite to create a spacious Two-Bedroom Penthouse Suite with 245 m² (2,637 ft²) of space for larger travelling parties.

 

Silversea’s Expedition Ships & Classic Fleet

Silversea has five luxury ships used for expedition sailings. Four are dedicated expedition vessels (Silver Origin, Silver Galapagos, Silver Explorer and Silver Cloud) while the versatile Silver Wind will undertake both expedition cruises to remote destinations as well as more traditional cruise routes thanks to the addition of expedition capabilities in her 2020 refurbishment. The two smallest vessels (Silver Origin and Silver Galapagos) accommodate 100 guests apiece, Silver Explorer welcomes 144 passengers, and Silver Cloud and Silver Wind welcome just over 250 guests.

Onboard facilities vary across the expedition fleet, but you can expect to find a beauty salon and spa, fitness centre, and lounge area for presentations, lectures and seminars, video screenings and briefings from the expedition team. The larger ships also come equipped with a shopping boutique, the Connoisseur’s Corner with a selection of cognacs and cigars for purchase, and you will also find a pool deck on Silver Cloud and Silver Wind.

Silversea’s classic fleet consists of larger ships than their expedition vessels, accommodating roughly to 400 – 600 guests. Facilities such as the spa area are more spacious and there are more public areas and dining venues on these ships, including a casino and four to eight dining options. Most dining is offered complimentary, however, there is one for-fee restaurant (La Dame) on every classic ship and a surcharge will also apply for the Seishin Restaurant and Kaiseki Restaurant on select vessels.

Silversea expedition and classic ships are marketed as all-suite, and category choices and sizes vary considerably by vessel. Guests can choose the option that suits their preferences and budget and ,depending on which ship they are cruising, can opt for anything from the smallest suite at 15 m² (167 ft²) with portholes to the largest Owner’s Suite at 160 m² (1,722 ft²) complete with a spacious balcony (found on Silver Origin). The size and configuration differ greatly by ship, and guests will find larger entry level suites on the classic ships (from 27 m² / 287 ft²) as well as on the newer/more recently refurbished expedition vessels.

 

Destination Specific Considerations

The ship that will suit you best will depend on the features that are most important to you. You might prefer a more intimate ship with fewer passengers, one with extra dining options, or the most spacious suite. However, when it comes to expedition sailings, the most important features may be defined by where your voyage takes you.

If you are cruising somewhere remote, it is important to consider if there is enough onboard programming and activities on sea days for your liking. If you are cruising through notoriously rough passages or seas (such as the Drake Passage) and are concerned about seasickness, then you may prefer a larger ship as these are often more stable.

If you are cruising to Antarctica, it is important to note that no more than 100 passengers can land at one site at any given time, so guests on larger ships take turns going ashore. The rotation is very well organised however to maximise your time ashore you might want to consider a smaller ship for your Antarctic expedition.

 

Who has the best itineraries and excursion programs?

Scenic and Silversea showcase exotic and remote regions around the globe with a collection of expedition style itineraries complete with Zodiac adventures. Silversea expeditions are operated by the line’s dedicated fleet, while the Eclipse comes into its own during these discovery trips for which the ship was primarily designed.

The majority of Scenic Eclipse itineraries visit the Polar regions, with South America, Antarctica and Northern Europe (crossing into the Arctic) the strongest offering for the line. Silversea also visits these popular expedition destinations and has itineraries in the Galapagos which the Eclipse does not.

If you are looking to cruise from Australia, Silversea has expedition cruises along the Kimberley Coast, as well as to the South Pacific and into Asia. Silversea also operates classic style cruises from Australia to New Zealand and the South Pacific as well as Asia. At this stage, there are no Scenic Eclipse cruises from or around Australia.

Other destinations where you will find an overlap in expedition and classic cruises with Silversea include Alaska, Northern Europe, and South America. In these regions, guests can opt for a Silversea expedition on a smaller ship or classic cruising on a slightly larger vessel with a few more amenities and luxuries on board.

In regions such as the Mediterranean, Western Europe and the Caribbean, guests will find almost all Silversea itineraries are operated by their classic fleet. Scenic also offers Eclipse itineraries in these mainstream destinations, and onboard and onshore experiences are adapted to suit.

When it comes to daily exploration, excursions are tailored to the destination by each line. Expedition excursions showcase the landscapes and ecosystems as well as local culture, with the help of experts. Experiences may range from nature hikes to kayak trips and Zodiac cruises, and a dedicated expedition team will be on hand to facilitate these unique adventures. The Eclipse also comes equipped with a helicopter and submarine, presenting opportunities that are not available with Silversea.

Submarine experiences are offered on itineraries across a number of regions, from the Arctic to Antarctica, the Caribbean to the Mediterranean and the Norwegian fjords. If you prefer a bird’s eye view, perhaps opt for a helicopter flight over the Greek Islands, Iceland, Antarctica or the Falkland Islands.

In more mainstream destinations, excursions are designed to showcase the history, cuisine, culture, iconic sights and hidden gems. These are similar for both lines, and may include experiences such as private shows, museum and palace visits, and unique opportunities for cultural immersion. Silversea prides itself on offering overnights in port and late night departures to allow guests to explore regions in more depth, including after dark when destinations take on a different feel entirely.

 

Which provides better value for me – Scenic or Silversea?

Scenic Eclipse cruises and Silversea expeditions are considered all-inclusive, with gratuities, most dining (or all in Scenic’s case), non-alcoholic and alcoholic beverages, a butler service, Wi-Fi, a self-service laundry, and excursions included. There is very little that you need to budget for on top of these cruise fares. Only optional amenities such as spa treatments or laundry services on either line or dining in Silversea’s for-fee restaurant that incur charges on board (some suite classes enjoy additional complimentary privileges).

Expedition experiences are included with both lines, and Scenic and Silversea provide a complimentary parka when cruising to regions such as Antarctica. Where you need additional gear, such as poles or waterproof layers, both lines offer a rental service at additional cost.

On Silversea classic cruises, guests can expect all the same onboard inclusions however onshore experiences are not included in the cruise fare. Daily excursions come at an additional cost which should be considered when comparing itineraries and prices (both between lines, and between cruise styles within the Silversea collection). Scenic includes excursions on all Eclipse itineraries regardless of destination or itinerary although charges apply for helicopter and submarine experiences.

As each line has a collection of journeys differing in routes, ports and lengths, you’ll be hard pressed to find two like for like voyages to compare prices. When choosing your perfect cruise, you’ll need to weigh up the itinerary that visits the places on your list, and pair that with the operator that offers the experience you are seeking in each destination. Expedition cruising, particularly in places such as the Polar regions, comes with high operating costs.

The calibre of the luxury adventures offered by Scenic and Silversea is reflected in the pricing, however they are incredible all-inclusive voyages, and an investment in the experience of a lifetime.