10 November 2019 - 24 nights
Day 1: Fly UK » Barcelona
Fly from the UK to Barcelona, and, on arrival, transfer to your 4* hotel for an overnight stay.
Day 2: Embark in Barcelona
Check out of your hotel and transfer to the port for embarkation onboard MSC Bellissima. Spain’s second city, and the self-confident capital and port of Catalunya – vibrates with life, and there’s certainly not another city in the country to touch it for sheer style, looks or energy.
Day 3: Marseille
When cruising southern France, you have to know that Marseille is the most renowned and populated metropolitan area in the country after Paris and Lyon. When you alight from your MSC cruise ship, the cafes around the Vieux Port, where glistening fish are sold straight off the boats on quai des Belges, are wonderful spots to observe the city's street life.
Day 4: Genoa, Italy
During a holiday to Genoa you can explore its old town: a dense and fascinating warren of medieval alleyways home to large palazzi built in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries by Genoa’s wealthy mercantile families and now transformed into museums and art galleries. You should seek out the Cattedrale di San Lorenzo, the Palazzo Ducale, and the Renaissance palaces of Via Garibaldi which contain the cream of Genoa’s art collections, as well as furniture and decor from the grandest days of the city’s past, when its ships sailed to all corners of the Mediterranean Sea.
Day 5: Civitavecchia/Rome, Italy
The port of Civitavecchia is one of the largest in Italy and is, of course, a destination of MSC Cruises in the Mediterranean. Civitavecchia enjoys a millenary history due to its coves along the coast, which offered a perfect shelter for vessels, making it a natural port long before cruise ships sailed the seas, and in fact the port was known to the Romans as Centumcellae.
Day 6: Day at Sea
Twice every night, six nights a week, guests on MSC Bellissima have the unique opportunity to see two original shows by Cirque du Soleil, the world leader in live artistic entertainment, and savour a superb culinary experience in the same glamorous venue. The Carousel Lounge is a technology-packed, entertainment and dining venue designed especially to meet the needs of Cirque du Soleil. This custom-built lounge covers 1,000 sq.m. and can accommodate up to 450 guests, including 120 enjoying the full show-and-dining experience.
Day 7: Heraklion/Crete, Greece
The best way to arrive in Iraklion is from the sea on an MSC cruise ship. It's traditional approach and is still the one that shows the city in its best light, with Mount Yiouhtas rising behind, the heights of the Psiloritis range to the west and, as you get closer, the great fortress guarding the harbour entrance and the city walls encircling and dominating the oldest part of town.
Day 8-9: Suez Canal (transit), Egypt
An engineering feet, the Suez Canal allows ships to cut 7,000 miles off their journey. It's always an impressive sight sailing through the middle of a desert.
Day 10: Aqaba/Petra, Jordan
From something of a dowdy backwater, in the last decade or so Aqaba has transformed itself into a pleasant, if still under-resourced, leisure destination. Hotels at all grades are sprining up in the town as well as at luxury waterfront developments up and down the coast; investment is coming in to improve the city's infrastructure and facilities. Some of the best diving and snorkelling in the world is centred on the unspoiled coral reefs that hug the coast just south of the town - an engaging contrast with the nearby desert attractions of Petra and Wadi Rum.
Day 11-15: Days at Sea
Enjoy exclusive world-class shows performed in innovative venues like the Carousel Lounge and the multi-purpose karaoke bar, comedy club, TV studio & Bar. Younger guests can take advantage of the super-amusement park and sports centre to play sports and games during the daytime and party and dance in the evening. And the whole family can enjoy hours of fun in one of the most intricate and exciting water parks at sea.
Day 16: Muscat, Oman
Stepping ashore in Oman’s capital Muscat, when your MSC cruise takes you to Dubai, Abu Dhabi & India, means stepping into one of the oldest cities of the Middle East. This is where incense was shipped to Greece and Rome as far back as the 2nd century.
Day 17: Khasab, Oman
Here the cruise proceeds into the Musandam, the longest and most famous fjord of these coasts, with its long inlets dug out of the limestone, that open towards the hinterland through cliffs rising vertically from the clear blue waters, populated by dolphins and a vast varied marine life, which is why it is known as the “Norway of Arabia”. One of the most fascinating ways to explore these lands is aboard a dhow, typical boats used in the Arab peninsula, nowadays also propelled by a motor, if not rigged with one or more Latin sails. During your visit to Oman, you can choose an excursion to Telegraph Island, the historic island in which, in the middle of the 19th century, the British built an intermediate station of the telegraph that connected Bombay to Bharain.
Day 18: Day at Sea
The Bar - This high-tech, multi-purpose space houses a radio broadcast suite and a TV studio broadcasting live games, quizzes, talent contests and other fun content across the ship. It also serves as an atmospheric comedy club, karaoke bar and live music venue.
Day 19: Doha, Qatar
The Aspire Tower in Doha (300 meters) dominates the skylines. It is the highest building of the country, whose shape is akin to a torch. This building is located near the city of sport, which has already hosted events such as the XII Pan Arab games and which will have a central role during the World Cup. Much of Doha, including places of worship such as the new mosque in the Qatar Faculty of Islamic studies, seems to be already in the future. Don't miss a visit to the Pearl, a futuristic artificial circular port which is being developed to the north of the city centre, and yet, as you will notice on your MSC excursion, the ancient heart of the city still beats strong.
Day 20-23: Dubai, U. Arab Emirates
Disembark the ship and transfer to your 4* hotel for a 3 night stay. Dine in decadence at the Burj Al Arab hotel, treat yourself in the shopping district at Atlantis, The Palm or just simply relax on Sunset Beach. With the one of the best views of the Burj Al Arab this beach is a hive of activity and one of the emirate's most beautiful stretches of sand. Don’t leave without experimenting with street eats in Deira, a beachside breakfast on Kite Beach or rooftop dining in Dubai Marina. With more than 200 nationalities living in Dubai, they’ve got nearly every craving covered. Uncover some of the best spots to eat in the city.
Arabian Desert Dunes Safari with Dinner Included
Penguin Encounter at Ski Dubai Included
Day 24: Fly Dubai » UK
Check out of your hotel and transfer to the airport for your overnight flight back to the UK.
Day 25: Arrive back in the UK
Terms & Conditions: Fares based on departure from London (other airports may carry a supplement) in a balcony stateroom. Promotional details, fares and itineraries were correct at time of publish (12 April 2019) but can be changed/withdrawn at any time without notice. All offers are applicable to new bookings only. E&OE