The people you meet
As Scenic Club members, Rod and Lyn Woodward have made many fond memories travelling the world with Scenic. However, they believe the real treasures are the lifetime friendships they’ve nurtured on their journeys.
Rod and Lyn Woodward have travelled on 14 Scenic luxury cruises and land journeys over the past 15 years, and there’s a simple reason they keep coming back. “What you see in the brochure is exactly what Scenic provide on a trip, the locations offered, the amazing friendly crew and the all-inclusive price,” says Rod. “We love the experience of seeing places far and wide, with different cultures and amazing scenery, plus it’s great to make new friends and see familiar faces.”
From their first trip to Canada in 2007, the couple based in the Australian Capital Territory were hooked. “We loved staying at the Fairmont Lake Louise; the incredible views from our room and seeing the snow and ice on the lake,” says Lyn. “And the scenery from the Rocky Mountaineer train was breathtaking.” It’s hard for them to pick a favourite journey – or even a top five. “Five isn’t enough!” Lyn laughs. “I have to choose six.” That first Rocky Mountaineer journey makes the list, along with Antarctica, Egypt and Jordan, Russia and the Baltic States, the Chilean Fjords and a Budapest to Amsterdam river cruise.
When asked to choose their most remarkable moments, they again have trouble choosing a favourite. “This list is endless as every trip we have done has so many standouts and memorable moments, too many to mention,” says Rod. Like the moment they spotted the first Antarctic iceberg from the bridge of Scenic Eclipse, winning them a bottle of champagne. There was more champagne once they went ashore, with the Scenic staff surprising guests with bottles of bubbly on the ice.
Surprises come standard on Scenic journeys and they have fond memories of the cake for their wedding anniversary, while cruising the Nile and the unexpected military parade they saw inside the Kremlin. “On our Myanmar river cruise, we were upgraded to the Royal Suite – a lovely experience,” Lyn remembers. “We were able to share a personalized lobster meal with friends in our room on the bow of the Scenic Aura.” The couple were excited to meet Australian TV presenter Catriona Rowntree while cruising the Chilean Fjords. “She’s a great ambassador for the Scenic brand,” says Rod.
The Woodwards have split their travels across expedition cruises, river cruises and land journeys, and find that each style has its own special magic. “Expedition cruising is exciting and gives a variety of activities. We find the team leaders are so knowledgeable and passionate,” says Rod. “River cruising visits a variety of places and is informative in a very relaxing way. Then there’s the ‘Wow this can’t get any better, but it does’ factor around every bend of the river. You never forget that wow factor when you experience it with a wonderful Scenic cocktail in your hand.”
Safety is also a key concern for the Woodwards and another reason they consistently travel with Scenic. “We are confident we will always be safe on tour if Scenic is arranging the itinerary, especially to remote locations. We know Scenic will take care of us,” says Lyn.
ABOVE FROM LEFT: The Woodwards, Lake Louise, Canada; Scenic staff with bottles of champagne on ice, Antarctica.
“We love the experience of seeing places far and wide, with different cultures and amazing scenery, plus it’s great to make new friends and see familiar faces.”
“You never forget that wow factor when you experience it with a wonderful Scenic cocktail in your hand”
Making friends on the road
Their fellow Scenic guests are another factor that keep the Woodwards coming back every year. “We have met many new friends along the way from all over Australia, the UK and Canada, and continue to travel together,” Rod says. “We met our ongoing travelling friends Barry and Jenny Bolton on an Egypt trip in 2011, and will be sharing more Scenic memorable moments with them and others on our forthcoming Greenland and Iceland tour, where a group of 10 of us will be travelling together.”
It's more than just their fellow guests that they look forward to meeting again. Scenic staff and crew come to see the guests as friends, building genuine relationships during their time on the road. On a trip to New Zealand in 2010, the couple met Cruise Director Sally Austin. “She did an amazing job and we were happy to see her again when we boarded our Antarctica cruise,” says Rod. “When we were greeting her and Captain Erwan Le Rouzic, she excitedly called out ‘It’s the Woodwards!’ It made us laugh – hopefully she remembered us for good reasons!”.
There was another happy reunion with Captain Le Rouzic during a later cruise through the Chilean Fjords. “The Scenic crew always go over and beyond to ensure you have a memorable, safe, and enjoyable trip,” Lyn says.
Getting advice from the experts
When thinking about their next Scenic journey, the Woodwards know how important it is to be informed about their future destination to choose the best fit for each occasion. “We decide where to go next by talking to our travelling friends and especially by attending Scenic Travel Events and chatting to our travel advisor – Kellie Woodward, who also happens to be our daughter. She has been instrumental in planning and booking all of our Scenic tours since day one,” says Rod. Rod also states, “we believe it is imperative that you use a Travel Advisor you can trust and rely on. Notwithstanding Kellie is our daughter; she is an expert in travel as she has been doing it for 28 years and knows all the upsides and, more importantly, the downsides.”. What’s next for the Woodwards?
There are more Scenic journeys in the pipeline, starting with a Scenic Eclipse II Arctic, Greenland and Iceland voyage and land journey in July this year. “This is a bucket list destination for Lyn as she is hoping to see polar bears”, says Rod. For 2024, the couple already has the 23-day Black Sea with the Best of the Balkans land journey and river cruise in the diary.
ABOVE FROM LEFT: The Woodwards, Antarctica; The Woodwards, Egypt. BELOW FROM LEFT: The Woodwards, Machu Picchu; The Woodwards, Scenic Azure, Portugal.