Grand Voyage – Middle East to Far East

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Take the cruise of a lifetime from the mysterious emirates to the exotic orient on this 28-night cruise onboard 4* MSC Splendida.

Departing Abu Dhabi in the UAE your cruise will visit Muscat in Oman before crossing the Indian Ocean to call at Sri Lanka’s fascinating city Colombo. The cruise continues to the Thai paradise of Phuket and Langkawi, Penang and Port Klang of Malaysia before calling at Singapore. You’ll then visit the historic Ho Chi Minh City in Vietnam, and the great eastern cities of Hong Kong and Shanghai before crossing the East China Sea to Yokohama, close to Japan’s capital Tokyo.

Inclusions

  • Direct flight from Dublin to Dubai
  • Airport transfer to the port
  • 28 nights accommodation aboard MSC Splendida based on 2 sharing an inside cabin
  • Full Board basis
  • All onboard entertainment
  • Transfer from the port to the airport
  • Indirect flight Tokyo to Dublin
  • Taxes and charges & baggage of 15kg per person

Itinerary

Day 1-3 Dubai, UAE

On arrival in Abu Dhabi, after your overnight flight, you will be transferred to the port in Dubai to board MSC Splendida. You have an overnight stay in port at Dubai before your cruise ship sets off.

A shore excursion on your can be the opportunity to discover Bur Dubai, at the heart of the metropolis of Dubai, on the south side of the breezy Creek. It’s the oldest part of Dubai and it offers a fascinating insight into the city’s traditional roots. This is where you’ll find many of the place’s most interesting Arabian heritage houses, clustered in the beautiful old Iranian quarter of Bastakiya and the waterfront Shindagha district, as well as the excellent Dubai Museum and the atmospheric Textile Souk. You could also take an excursion to the bustling district of Deira: the centre of Dubai’s traditional commercial activity, much of it still conducted in the area’s vibrant array of old-fashioned souks, including the famous gold and spice markets. A few kilometres south of the old city centre, modern Dubai begins in spectacular style with Sheikh Zayed Road, home to a neck-cricking array of skyscrapers including the glittering Emirates Towers.

Day 4 Abu Dhabi, UAE

The United Arab Emirates’ capital, Abu Dhabi, where your MSC cruise ship awaits your return, offers an intriguing contrast to its freewheeling neighbour Dubai, a little over an hour’s drive down the coast. Leading attractions on your Emirates and Oman cruises to Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates include the extravagant Emirates Palace hotel and the even more spectacular Sheikh Zayed Mosque, while the various attractions of Yas Island, home to the vast Ferrari World theme park, lie just down the road.

Day 5 At Sea

Cruising

Day 6 Muscat, Oman

Stepping ashore in Oman’s capital Muscat, when your cruise takes you to the Abu Dhabi, Dubai and Oman, 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. Today it is still possible to find traces of its glorious past in the old centre where, until the latter part of the past century, the gates that separated the various quarters would be closed three hours after dawn. Muttrah, the historic centre of trade and activity of the capital that you will see during the cruise, is one of the most intriguing and well preserved parts of the town centre.

Day 7-9 At Sea

Cruising

Day 10 Colombo, Sri Lanka

Beneath the unprepossessing surface of Colombo lies an intriguing and characterful city just waiting to be discovered on an MSC Grand Voyages excursion. After leaving the port where your cruise ship awaits your return, Fort district lies at the heart of old Colombo, occupying (as its name suggests) the site of the now-vanished Portuguese defences. Under the British, Fort developed into the centrepiece of the colonial capital, adorned with handsome Neoclassical buildings and boasting all the necessities of expatriate life in the tropics, right down to the inevitable clock tower and statue of Queen Victoria. East of Fort, the helter-skelter bazaar district of the Pettah is Colombo’s most absorbing area, and feels quite unlike anywhere else in Sri Lanka.

Day 11-12 At Sea

Cruising

Day 13 Phuket, Thailand

Phuket Town (Muang Phuket) stands distinct from the tailor-made tourist settlements along the beaches as a place of tangible history and culture waiting to be appreciated on a Grand Voyages cruise excursion. Most visitors hang about just long enough to jump on a beach-bound songthaew, but you may find yourself returning for a welcome dose of real life; there’s plenty to engage you in a stroll through the small but atmospherically restored heart of the Old Town, along with many idiosyncratic cafés and art shops, several notable restaurants and some good handicraft shops.

Day 14 Langkawi, Malaysia

Situated 30km off the coast just south of the Thai border, at 500 square kilometres Pulau Langkawi is the largest of an archipelago of mostly uninhabited islands. A shore excursion on your Grand Voyages cruise can be the opportunity to discover its white-sand beaches which are easily the best along the entire west coast of Peninsular Malaysia. Langkawi’s charms consist largely of lazing around on the sand, perhaps taking time off for a mangrove cruise after sea eagles, to snorkel or scuba dive south at Pulau Payar Marine Park, or to ride the Langkawi Cable Car over the interior forests to the top of Gunung Mat Cincang.

Day 15 Penang, Malaysia

In the far northwest of Peninsular Malaysia, Penang is the most ambiguously named part of the Malaysia: depending on context, the moniker may refer to the island (Pulau Pinang in Malay, pinang being what Malays call the betel-nut palm), or the state (the island plus a blob of mainland opposite, around the town of Butterworth), or even just the state capital – properly Georgetown, waiting to be appreciated on a Grand Voyages cruise excursion. This was where the British established their first Malay port in the late eighteenth century, laying the foundations for the Georgetown of today, a fascinating blend of colonial, Indian, Malay and – especially – Chinese and Peranakan heritage. A shore excursion on your Grand Voyages cruise can be the opportunity to visit this city that has seen a renaissance since its central old quarter, along with that of Melaka, were jointly made a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2008, and makes a wonderful base to see all of Penang. Elsewhere on the 285-square-kilometre island are a coastal national park where you might see nesting turtles, a couple of unusual temples and a rather overdeveloped beach at Batu Ferringhi.

Accommodation

MSC Splendida

A cruise ship where technology and comfort are spectacularly combined. Futuristic, yet retaining its classic simplicity and elegance. A cruise ship that promises the ultimate cruise experience.

In the MSC AUREA Spa highly-trained staff combine the magic of Balinese massage with the most modern and exclusive treatments. Specialities include: traditional water treatments (a legacy from Roman times), saunas, Turkish bath, solarium, relaxation room, thalassotherapy, massage room and whirlpool baths. For those seeking more ‘high impact’ activities, there is an exercise room filled with the latest equipment.

MSC Splendida also features 4 swimming pools, a squash court, a Formula 1 simulator and much, much more…

Extra Information

Booking remarks

  • Inclusive of taxes and service charges as indicated
  • Non refundable or transferable booking deposit of €250 per person
  • Full payment due 12 weeks prior to departure date
  • 2% surcharge if balance is paid by credit card
  • Optional Insurance €29 (conditions apply)
  • Drinks onboard not included. All Inclusive Drinks package only €26 per person per night
  • Gratuities and service charges onboard not included
  • These prices are guidelines only and are subject to change and availability. Pricing will be confirmed at time of booking.
  • Single supplement on request

  Cost per person: €3,649pp
  Number of nights: 28

30 March 2018 €3,649 Inside
30 March 2018 €4,439 Oceanview
30 March 2018 €5,049 Balcony

Tour supplied in Partnership with:

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  Call:  (01) 294 1000