SA Cruise News

Crystal Cruises new expedition ship to sail South Africa cruise

Crystal Cruises new expedition cruise ship Crystal Endeavor has completed her maiden cruise season in Iceland ahead of her repositioning to the South Atlantic for a Cape Town itinerary.

Crystal Endeavor will cruise a number of African itineraries in 2022, including cruises from Ghana, Senegal and South Africa during the winter.

Rendering of Crystal Endeavor

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The $500-million Crystal Endeavor was ordered by Crystal Cruises in 2018. She was meant to be delivered in 2020, but the handover was delayed by the COVID-19 pandemic, which shutdown the global cruise industry for much of the year.

She eventually entered service in July this year, and sailed a series of 10-night voyages from Reykjavik, Iceland during the summer, before repositioning to Greenwhich in the UK.

The 100-suite, 200-passenger vessel will departed Greenwich for an 11-night cruise to Lisbon via France and Spain on Tuesday, and will reposition to Miami in late October for a nine-night Caribbean sailing to San Juan, Puerto Rico.

The ship – which has a Polar Class 6 (PC6) classification that enables it to sail in the Arctic and Antarctic – will also cruise to Antarctica, the Arctic, the Norwegian fjords, Iceland, the British Isles, Africa and Asia in 2022 and 2023.

Highlights include an Ushuaia to Cape Town cruise in March 2022, a wildlife-themed itinerary from Ghana to Senegal in April 2022 and a Bali to Cairns trip in December 2022.

Crystal Endeavor will sail from Cape Town up Namibia’s Skeleton Coast

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Her South African cruise will depart April 5th, 2022 from Cape Town. The 16-night itinerary will call in Walvis Bay, Luderitz, Luanda, Sao Tome and Principe Island, Benin, Togo and Ghana.

The Lüderitz Peninsula boasts an array of wildlife, from flamingos and oryx to springbok and jackals. The surrounding waters are home to the rare Haviside’s dolphin, seals and even whales. A large penguin colony makes a home on Halifax Island.

Originally the heart of Portuguese Angola in the 17th century, Luanda has been an influential port city throughout its history, highlights include the Fortaleza de São Miguel, built in 1576, which offers views northward of the city’s waterfront, while Kissama National Park provides close-by wildlife viewing opportunities.

Old 16th century Portuguese fortresses abound in Sao Tome and Principe

Sao Tome and Principe is one of the world’s smallest island nations, a verdant, varied landscape shrouded in canopies of green – resulting from the advancing jungle that surrounds the island’s iconic needle-shaped Pico Cão Grande, a volcanic pillar jutting 2,175 feet above sea level.

Guests can explore 16th century fortresses, a reviving cocoa (and artisan chocolate) trade, vibrant reef diving in turquoise waters beyond the white sand beaches and more.

In Ghana, guests will discover UNESCO-listed forts and castles remaining from the Portuguese trade between the 15th and 18th centuries.

Crystal Endeavor meanwhile offers three main dining rooms, three specialty restaurants, a pool, spa, salon, fitness centre and several lounges. All guests have private verandas and butler service.

Endeavor will carry 18 Zodiacs, 14 kayaks and a submarine, and has been designed with what the cruise line calls the largest space per guest ratio of any ship at sea.

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