Hurtigruten Itinerary Now Connects Europe And Africa
WHY IT RATES: In little more than a week you can go from the fjords of Norway to the heat of the Moroccan sun, certainly one of the most unique cruise experiences. - Rich Thomaselli, TravelPulse senior writer
PHOTO: Visit a souk in the heart of Casablanca, Morocco, on this latest journey. (Courtesy Hurtigruten)
Hurtigruten, the award-winning expedition cruise line renowned for voyages along the Norwegian coast for more than a century, announces Cultural Contrasts: Through the North Atlantic to Africa, a brand new route connecting two continents in one itinerary.
This expedition-style sailing will be inaugurated with nine- and 11-day journeys beginning Sept. 16 and 18 aboard the well-appointed MS Midnatsol, and are priced from $2,556 per person, double occupancy.
SEE MORE: Hurtigruten’s Exploration of Antarctica
Guests will begin their exploration of these European coastal gems in Bergen, Norway’s “Gateway to the Fjords,” before sailing off to the vibrant bike- and boat-filled city of Amsterdam; the English Channel island of Guernsey; Spain’s Celtic and Roman-rich heritage city of La Coruna, and its ancient city of Cadiz; as well as Portugal’s Porto, famous for its great wine, and its capital, Lisbon. The expedition ends in bustling Casablanca in Morocco.
Throughout the voyage, the onboard Expedition Team will impart their extensive knowledge of the history and geography of these coastal areas, offer advice to guests on the best sites to visit, and give lectures that will enhance the guest’s visits and sightseeing. Dozens of special excursions are also designed to give guests a more in-depth experience of each destination city.
In Porto, for instance, guests can opt to take the “Port Sights & River Cruise” tour – enjoying tastings of its world-renown port wines, visiting the city’s 12th-century Baroque-style cathedral and the grand São Bento railway station, and relaxing during a boat ride on a Rabelo boat – typically used to transport the barrels of wine from the Douro region.
READ MORE: Hurtigruten Sailing Toward Expansion
A tour of Agadir (Morocco) starts with a visit to the old Kasbah followed by free time in Souq al-Had, the biggest market in the region with nearly 6,000 shops. The tour ends with a folkloric show, “Fantasia,” enjoyed with tea and Moroccan pastries.
In Guernsey, guests may wish to take a 50-minute ferry ride to the island of Sark, home to a mere 550 residents, where a horse-drawn carriages transport visitors back in time on a tour of the award-winning La Seigneurie Gardens, comprising magical elements like Royal Horticultural Society (RHS)-recognized walled gardens, a maze, a restored Victorian greenhouse and a large collection of indigenous flowers and shrubs.
Aboard the MS Midnatsol, guests experience a ship specially designed to ensure safe, comfortable travel through polar waters. Named for the midnight sun, MS Midnatsol was built in 2003 to reflect Norway’s summer through the use of bright, colorful décor and artwork, plus a sun deck and a Jacuzzi on Deck 9.
Other features include modern accommodations, casual dining and an array of amenities – including a large, two-story panorama lounge above the bow, ensuring everyone has a front-row seat to observe abundant marine wildlife and natural phenomena. Guests may also relax in lounges or in the library, train in a well-outfitted fitness room with a sauna, absorb the passing scenery while relaxing in a Jacuzzi, and attend educational lectures by Hurtigruten’s outstanding Expedition Team.
Hurtigruten is a world leader in exploration travel, sailing to the remote of destinations of Antarctica, Spitsbergen, Greenland, and Iceland, as well as year-round along Norway's coast. The company’s fleet of intimate ships, each of which carry 100 to 646 guests, allows travelers to enjoy the scenery and culture of the destination in a relaxed atmosphere.
Additional information, brochures and reservations can be obtained from travel agents or Hurtigruten's visitor-friendly website, www.hurtigruten.us; by phone at 877-301-3117; or fax at 888-524-2145. To order brochures 24 hours a day, call 800-582-0835.
SOURCE: Hurtigruten press release
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