Singer and TV personality Jane McDonald sets sail for more exotic locations in the third series of her popular cruising travelogues. With Jane’s taste for adventure, love of a good laugh and unerring ability to find eccentric characters, cruising has never been more fun.
After a lifetime’s wait to see America’s ‘golden state’, Jane does it in style by sailing up the California coast on a luxury 3,000-berth cruise ship. The journey takes in some of the USA’s most recognisable landmarks, from LA’s iconic ‘Hollywood’ sign to San Francisco’s Golden Gate Bridge.
Starting out in Los Angeles, Jane ticks off the typical tourist list – strolling along Hollywood’s ‘walk of fame’, shopping in Beverley Hills, and ‘beautiful’ people-watching in the resorts of Santa Monica and Muscle Beach.
The two-day trip up to San Francisco gives her plenty of time to explore her supersized ship, the Ruby Princess, with its four swimming pools, outdoor cinema and seemingly endless array of bars and restaurants. There is also a theatre where Jane gets a backstage pass to meet one of her idols – actress Linda Gray, better known as Sue Ellen in the US drama series ‘Dallas’.
Once in San Francisco, she takes an open-topped bus tour, travelling alongside the world-famous cable cars and touring through the atmospheric neighbourhoods such as Chinatown. After learning a few facts about the history of the bridge – including why it is painted orange – Jane hits some of the steepest streets in America… on foot. A stop at one of the city’s ice cream parlours looks like a reward after such a huge effort – until she sees the bizarre flavours on offer. Turkey and stuffing, anyone?
Back on board the ship, Jane attends a wedding between two of the passengers, competes in a speed-painting competition, and signs up for her most unusual spa treatment – a massage in which her entire body is coated in melted chocolate.
Before sailing back to her original destination, the Ruby Princess takes a detour to San Diego, perched just above the Mexican border. Here, temperatures rarely drop below 20°C, so it’s the idea place for Jane to catch some rays while paddling in the Pacific. As the sun starts to fade, she heads inland to a classic theme park, taking a ride on its highest – and fastest – rollercoaster.
Tony Roberts, Princess Cruises’ vice president UK and Europe, said: “‘Cruising with Jane McDonald’ has been an outstanding success story and we’re delighted to be featuring in the first episode of the new series. It was a pleasure hosting Jane and we hope that the Channel 5 audience enjoys seeing the unique experiences California has on offer from the decks of Ruby Princess.”