Great news, for cruise fanatics; MSC Cruises has just announced that it will be bringing two ships to South Africa’s shores for the 2020/2021 cruise season, with the new ship homeporting in Cape Town. Up until recently, the cruise operator’s main homeport was Durban, with limited cruises departing from the Cape Town cruise terminal at the V&A Waterfront. This cruise season, the MSC Opera will join the MSC Musica in South Africa, giving guests eight different itineraries to choose from. This new addition to the South African cruise season will be a huge advantage for cruise crazy South Africans looking for more cruise holiday options.
From December 2020 to March 2021 MSC Opera, which will be homeported in Cape Town, will join MSC Musica, homeported in Durban. This will mark the first time that two different class MSC Cruise ships (Lirica and Musica Class) will be deployed in the country simultaneously and spells exciting times for holidaymakers looking for more affordable holiday options within South Africa’s shores. The upcoming season will now offer over 60 cruises from one of two home ports and will mean that 50,000 additional cruise passengers can discover why cruising in South Africa is booming.
MSC’s decision to increase the number of ships and cruises available in South Africa is due to the significant growth in demand in cruise holidays over the past few years. “Our most recent season saw a 25% increase in guests compared to the same period in 2017/2018. MSC Cruises has been bringing bigger and better ships to this country and enriching our itineraries as more South Africans are realising that a cruise is an affordable, convenient and exciting holiday option,” explains Ross Volk, MD for MSC Cruises South Africa.
Cruises are increasingly becoming an appealing holiday choice for budget-conscious South African travellers as they offer an all-inclusive vacation – all food, accommodation, and most activities are included in the cruise fare. The diversity of the offering also appeals to both local travellers and international tourists who are keen to explore more of the South African coastline in a more convenient way.
MSC Opera, which can host approximately 2,500 guests will offer 22 cruises next season alongside MSC Musica, which will offer 40 cruises and can cater for approximately 3,200 guests. Those who have travelled on-board the MSC Opera on previous cruise seasons will be thrilled to hear that the magnificent ship was also completely refurbished in 2014 as part of MSC Cruises’ Renaissance Programme, giving guests an upgraded experience.
The ships will alternate routes, providing South African cruisers with a wider choice of options to suit their holiday needs. This means that both Cape Town and Durban ports of embarkation will get to experience the leading cruise line’s elegant and diverse product offering and enjoy more cruise destinations and packages than ever before.
One highlight of the 2020/2021 cruise itinerary is MSC Cruises’ 14-day New Year cruise around Southern Africa. The cruise will depart from Durban on 26 December and will incorporate destinations including Portuguese Island; Nosy Be, Madagascar; followed by Port Victoria, Seychelles; and then Port Louis in Mauritius, returning to Durban on 9 January.
Even more exciting is the arrival of the MSC Orchestra in South African waters in November 2019. Guests will be able to book a spot on-board this spectacular vessle who will be making her maiden voyage to South Africa for the up-coming cruise season. MSC Orchestra will be offering three-, four- and five-night sailings around the South African coastline until April 2020. Highlights of these itineraries include Pomene Bay in Mozambique – a marine safari experience complete with its own beach club – Portuguese Island, and Maputo.
For more information visit the MSC Cruises website.