Obsessed with "country counting," the practice of tabulating your travels to see how many places you've been? Take it to another level by cruising your way into the Travelers' Century Club.
The Travelers' Century Club is a real organization, with local member chapters, social gatherings and a website with a member forum. Founded in 1954 -- when "overseas leisure travel was still a rarity" -- TCC has a list of 325 territories (the world's 195 sovereign countries plus additional territories and islands) that would-be members check off, bucket-list style. Once you hit 100, you're in.
Whether you actually want to be a club member or are just trying to see as much of the world as possible, we think reaching 100 countries on the Travelers' Century Club list is a milestone worth celebrating -- and why not do it all by cruise? Here are our continent-by-continent tips on how to get there, both by maximizing itineraries that get you lots of countries in one trip and by highlighting places you might not have known you could cruise to.
Country collectors shouldn't forget river cruises. A Rhine River cruise will generally take you to four countries -- Switzerland, France, Germany and the Netherlands -- while Danube River cruises also rack up at least four on a standard Passau to Budapest route (Germany, Austria, Slovakia, Hungary and sometimes the Czech Republic if you go to Cesky Krumlov). Lower Danube River cruises get you Hungary, Serbia, Croatia, Bulgaria and Romania. And here's a hint for the die-hard TCC fan: Look into a British Isles cruise. The list counts Scotland, England, Wales and Northern Ireland as separate, as well as Ireland. In addition, you may visit Jersey, Guernsey or Isle of Man -- all of which count as additional territories toward your 100.