MSC Cruises reveals winter cruises

With two new next-generation ships coming into service 2017 is set to be a milestone year for MSC Cruises. Scheduled to launch early July MSC Meraviglia will spend the winter in the Mediterranean and from December 2017 MSC Seaside will homeport in Miami serving the Caribbean. In addition MSC Cruises will be offering a full range of winter cruises to the sun by deploying more ships in South America and Caribbean. Other exciting itineraries will depart from Dubai and Abu Dhabi helping guests discover this popular region whilst attractive Fly&Cruise packages will make for an effortless cruise holiday.

CUBA AND THE CARIBBEAN 

Guests wishing to benefit from the year-round sunshine in the Caribbean will be faced with an abundance of choice with five ships serving the region: two ships departing from Miami, USA one from Fort de France, Martinique and Pointe-a-Pitre in Guadeloupe and two from Havana, Cuba. In total there will be more than 80 departures to choose from during the season.

MSC Seaside, ‘the ship that follows the sun’  will be christened in December 2017 and offer guests a new way to experience the beautiful Caribbean sea on roundtrip voyages from Miami.

Featuring a striking beach condo design, the ship will connect guests to the sea like never before with stunning design features like a 360° glass boardwalk and panoramic lifts. MSC Seaside will offer two different itineraries, the first including calls at buzzing San Juan in Puerto Rico, Philipsburg on the island of Saint Maarten and the Caribbean capital Nassau in the Bahamas. The second itinerary will include Ocho Rios in Jamaica, George Town in the Cayman Islands and Cozumel in Mexico. For an even longer stay in paradise, guests will be able to combine the two itineraries to form a 14 night ‘butterfly’ cruise around both the Eastern and Western Caribbean.

White sandy beaches and clear blue sea in the Caribbean

MSC Opera and MSC Armonia will continue to offer itineraries which include two or three days in the historic port of Havana, Cuba, allowing guests time to fully enjoy everything that the vibrant city and its surroundings have to offer. For those willing to extend their stay, it will be possible to combine two itineraries into a 14-night cruise. Itineraries will include calls in Jamaica, the Cayman Islands, Mexico, Belize and Honduras.

MSC Fantasia will be offering 7 or 14 night cruises in the Southern Caribbean from Martinique or Guadeloupe. This will see the introduction of a Fantasia class ship meaning that guests looking for a luxury experience can enjoy the MSC Yacht Club, designed for the most discerning guests who desire exclusivity and privacy. New ports of call on these itineraries will include Kingstown, Saint Vincent and The Grenadines.

A range of specially designed shore excursions will help guests get the most out of their Caribbean getaway. Highlights will include swimming with Stingrays in St John’s and visiting “The Baths” at Virgin Gorda, a famous geological formation consisting of huge, sea-sculpted granite boulders that line the beach and form tidal pools, tunnels, caves, arches and scenic grottoes.

MEDITERRANEAN

Set to launch in July, MSC Meraviglia, MSC Cruises’ brand new flagship will offer itineraries around the Mediterranean for her inaugural season. For travellers wishing to experience some of the best destinations Europe has to offer in the quieter winter season, MSC Meraviglia will offer seven night Western Mediterranean cruises until April 2018. Guests can discover the famous Vatican Museum, explore Barcelona and Montserrat with a tour that ends with a regional wine tasting, marvel at the colourful hillsides of Palermo or soak up the history in the bustling port of Valetta in Malta.

MSC Meraviglia during her recent sea trials

Whatever the weather the ‘ship for all seasons’ will offer a whole world of things to do whilst on board, whether that be watching a spectacular Cirque de Soleil at Sea show, eating and drinking in one of the many bars or restaurants or simply getting pampered in the authentic Balinese spa, there will never be a dull moment.

During the 2017/18 winter season MSC Orchestra will be offering a brand new series of 10, 11 and 12 night sailings with four ports of embarkation providing an even larger choice for convenient guest embarkation, with the option to start the cruise in either Genoa, Marseille, Barcelona or Civitavecchia. For a full immersion into the jewels of the Mediterranean, guests will be able to choose a brand new 10 night itinerary in the heartland of the Mediterranean with only one day at sea or an 11 night itinerary to Greece stopping in Corfu, the quaint Greek town of Katakolon and historic Heraklion in Crete, all with only two days at sea. With full day stays in each port, there will be plenty of time to soak up the local culture. Also new for the season will be a 12 night itinerary calling at destinations including the island of Madeira, the Canary Islands with their rugged volcanic landscape and even a touch of Africa with a call in Morocco.

MSC Cruises will also introduce a number of shore excursions especially for food lovers. Guests will be able to discover two of Naples’ best-kept secrets in the historical quarter, one of which is baking handmade pizza on the cities subterranean geothermal rock. In Barcelona, guests will be able to enjoy a unique gastronomic experience in the first and only museum in the world dedicated exclusively to Iberian ham.

SOUTH AMERICA 

MSC Cruises will have four ships based in South America for the winter season. MSC Preziosa and MSC Magnifica will offer cruises of up to seven nights from Santos/São Paulo, Brazil, MSC Poesia will offer longer eight and nine night cruises from Buenos Aires, Argentina and MSC Musica will offer a range of cruises from Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

Christ the Redeemer, Cristo Redentor, in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Alongside these exciting embarkation ports, itineraries will also include stops at exotic destinations including Salvador and Rio de Janeiro in Brazil, islands Ilhabela and Ilha Grande, Punta del Este and Montevideo in Uruguay. Throughout the season, guests will have the choice of over 70 departures with itineraries varying in length from seven to nine nights.

DUBAI, ABU DHABI & SIR BANI YAS

MSC Cruises will continue to offer its popular United Arab Emirates cruises with two embarkation ports: Dubai and Abu Dhabi. MSC Splendida will offer guests the most modern ship facilities in the region, including MSC Cruises’ iconic MSC Yacht Club. All itineraries will include a call at Sir Bani Yas Island beach oasis, with 36,000sqm of fine golden beaches and access to a huge safari reserved exclusively to MSC Cruises’ guests on the day that the ship calls. Alongside this destination, itineraries will also include stops at the stunning city of Muscat, Oman, picturesque beach town of Khor al Fakkan as well as Doha, Qatar and Bahrain.

The Burj Al Arab Jumeirah in Dubai

Sun lovers and adventure seekers looking to get away from it all during the winter months are able to personalize their voyage by adding different experiences to their cruise. Furthermore they will be able to benefit from the new flexible dining options and a choice of dining packages that MSC Cruises is introducing starting with MSC Meraviglia and MSC Seaside. Guests are also advised to take advantage of MSC’s Loyalty Match Program allowing them to discover the world of MSC Cruises, while enjoying all the benefits they are used to.

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