See Dubai, then explore the world
As well as being a leading holiday destination in itself, Dubai has grown in recent years as a hub for cruises. The multi-entry UAE visit visa – which gives cruise visitors special dispensation to enter all UAE ports using a single visa – is expected to see our cruise industry grow to accommodate 425,000 tourists by the end of this year.
While the UAE and surrounding countries offer plenty of stops for relaxing, exploring and shopping, there are plenty of options for cruises venturing further afield. Read on for three luxury cruise ships currently operating out of Dubai, ready to sail off into the sunset:
Seeking a South East Asian escape
Leaving Dubai on November 3 this year, the evocatively named Spices, Teas and Rubber Trees voyage will see passengers head South East from the UAE, disembarking in Singapore after 15 nights of travelling. Along the way, the cruise will berth in Mumbai, Goa and Kochi in India, Colombo in Sri Lanka, and Kuala Lumpur in Malaysia.
A mid-sized cruise liner, Azamara Quest is designed with both comfort and fun in mind, and as such the luxurious spa and pool are ideal for daytime relaxation, whereas the four bars and on-ship casino are geared towards having a good time in the evenings. The staterooms rival any room you would be likely to find in a luxury hotel, with freshly-cut flowers, daily turndowns and 24-hour room service available.
Embarking November 3, 2015
Setting sail from Dubai on a 16-night voyage, the Splendour of the Seas will take passengers through Salalah, Oman; the Suez Canal; Athens and the island of Santorini in Greece; before dropping anchor for the final time in Venice, Italy.
In between the destinations, there will be plenty of time to explore the cavernous 264m-long cruise liner – and that's a good thing, as there is a lot to do aboard this grand ship. A spa and fitness centre, an 18-hole miniature golf course, two swimming pools, a rock-climbing wall, a jogging track, and eight bars are just a few of the many amenities onboard.
Splendour of the Seas
Embarking April 4, 2016
Around the world in 34 days
Operated by cruising giant Holland America Line, the MS Amsterdam is set to embark on a mammoth 33-night Grand World Voyage, setting sail from Dubai on March 28 next year and arriving in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, USA, on April 30. Along the way passengers will pass through Oman, Egypt, the Suez Canal, Greece, Italy, Monaco, Spain and Portugal.
The boat itself is nothing less than expected for a vessel that will accommodate 2000 passengers and crew for more than a month. Equipped with plenty of dining, leisure and entertainment options, the MS Amsterdam is also home of the stunning Planeto Astrolabium, a majestic clock tower sculpture holding court in the grand three-storey atrium.
Embarking March 28, 2016