Middle East Cruise News

Middle East included among new Azamara Grand Voyages for 2024 and 2025

Azamara has announced new Grand Voyages of 35 to 70 nights for 2024 and 2025, including an East to West itinerary that calls at several ports in the Middle East.

These new itineraries are in addition to Azamara’s existing grand voyages and destination-focused itineraries, such as its annual homeporting season out of Cape Town, South Africa during summer in the southern hemisphere.

With the 11 new itineraries that have been announced spanning Europe, Asia, the Middle East/Arabia, and the South Pacific, each of the line’s four ships will operate at least one Grand Voyage in 2024 and 2025.

Azamara Cruises

“Over the past few years, we’ve seen more of our guests opting for longer itineraries and back-to-back sailings,” said Carol Cabezas, President of Azamara. 

“In response to this increasing demand for prolonged travel, we’ve created Grand Voyages to encourage our guests to travel farther and delve even deeper into the rich tapestry of cultures, cuisines, and traditions that make up our world,” Cabezas added.

“Our ships will be their home away from home as they travel from South Africa to Portugal, or from Japan to Greece, creating meaningful memories along the way,” she said.

Each of the voyages will feature Azamara’s Extended Destination Days, with the ship spending at least 10 hours in port. There will also be a range of overnight stays, so that guests have extra time for land explorations. 

Some of the longest itineraries will offer more than two-dozen of these extended port stays.

The new Grand Voyage itinerary featuring the Middle East is the longest of the cruises, a 70-night voyage aboard Azamara Pursuit from Athens to Melbourne, Australia.

The cruise departs on October 26th, 2024, with port calls in Alexandria, Egypt; Aqaba, Jordan; Jeddah, Saudi Arabia; Dubai, UAE; Goa and Cochin, India; Phuket Port, Thailand; Singapore; Benoa, Bali; and Perth, Adelaide, and Eden, Australia.

The itinerary underscores the importance of Saudi Arabia’s entry into the cruise industry, as cruise ships sailing through the Red Sea on their way to Asia or Australia previously would do a straight run of 11 days at sea between Aqaba and Dubai. 

Now, with Saudi Arabia having opened up to cruise lines in 2021, Jeddah has become a popular port of call, making these itineraries more diverse and interesting for passengers.

The shortest of the new Grand Voyages cruises is a 35-Night Europe Grand Voyage aboard Azamara Quest sailing from Nice to Amsterdam, visiting Rome (Civitavecchia) and Florence (Livorno), Italy; St. Tropez, Cherbourg, and Bordeaux, France; Barcelona and Seville, Spain; Lisbon, Portugal; and Bruge (Zeebruge), Netherlands.

Azamara operates four vessels, each accommodating up to 686 guests: Azamara Quest, Azamara Pursuit, Azamara Journey, and Azamara Onward. The new Grand Voyage itineraries come with several perks, such as air fare and shore excursion credits up to $1,200, a premium beverage package, and WiFi.

This is in addition to the cruise amenities covered on any Azamara voyage, such as dining at five onboard venues, all beverages, crew gratuities, and cultural events organized by the cruise line.

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