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MSC Cruises opens up a world of Arabian splendor

Jul 22, 2011

With the introduction of Abu Dhabi and the Emirates as a new destination for the 2011-2012 winter season, and the prospect of a vast array of fascinating shore excursions, MSC Cruises has created a unique opportunity for guests to experience the very best of this enchanting region.

The luxury cruise ship MSC Lirica has a full schedule of nineteen 8 day-7 night cruises from Abu Dhabi, departing every Sunday from October 30th through to March 4th 2012 and alternatively from Dubai every Friday from October 28th to March 9th 2012.

Stopping at the ports of Khasab and Muscat in the Sultanate of Oman as well as Al Fujairah in the United Arab Emirates, and with two unforgettable nights in Abu Dhabi and Dubai, guests on MSC Lirica can enjoy the region’s most impressive attractions thanks to a comprehensive range of excursions.

As the only cruise company to call at Khasab on a regular basis, MSC Cruises offers privileged access to a little-known paradise. Dubbed the “Norway of Arabia” for its rugged coastline, the area boasts spectacular fjord-like inlets dotted with picturesque fishing villages, which guests of MSC Cruises can visit in traditional dhows, stopping to swim in the turquoise waters around atmospheric Telegraph Island. Alternatives include a coach tour to the town’s dramatic 17th century fort and the unforgettable thrill of a jeep safari through breathtaking scenery to the mountain peak of Jebel Harim.

A similarly eclectic choice of outings is available from Muscat, from dolphin-watching and “dune bashing” in the Wahiba Sands wilderness to private dhow cruises and visits to castles and mosques.

From Al Fujairah, guests can choose between a desert discovery trip, a scenic and cultural tour of the coast or a half-day of pure relaxation on the beach between the beautiful Hajar Mountains and the warm waters of the gulf.

The metropolis of Abu Dhabi makes for stunning city tours, as well as being the base for a behind-the-scenes look at the Yas Marina Formula 1 Circuit and a trip to the brand new Ferrari World Theme Park, where visitors can ride the world’s fastest roller-coaster. For a change of pace, there is also a visit to the oasis town of Al Ain, known as the “Garden City” for its lush greenery (the first site in the United Arab Emirates to make it to UNESCO’s World Heritage List), a face-to-face encounter with majestic birds of prey at the Abu Dhabi Falcon Hospital or the chance to enjoy afternoon tea at the sumptuous Emirates Palace.

From the world’s tallest building and its only 7-star hotel to a man-made island in the shape of a palm tree, Dubai is not short of spectacular modern landmarks to visit. And guests of MSC Cruises can enjoy much more besides, like shopping in a traditional souk, swimming with dolphins or taking a romantic sunset cruise in a traditional dhow.

By providing so many imaginative options for discovering this extraordinary part of the world, not forgetting the state-of-the-art leisure facilities on board MSC Lirica itself, MSC Cruises is confident of offering guests an unforgettable Arabian adventure.

MSC Cruises opens up a world of Arabian splendor
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