Divided into exciting, manageable, diverse voyages that are sure to satisfy your taste for the exotic, Africa Cruises offer an adventurous travel alternative. In fact, an Africa cruises vacation is sure to be unforgettable no matter what you choose to do. There is just so much to see and do; so many different landscapes and cultures to experience; you may just have to plan on a second cruise to Africa for your next vacation! Whether you choose to visit the ancient pyramids in Egypt, take one of the cruises in South Africa, visit the untouched Seychelles islands, or view the last remaining dodo bird egg in East London, you're sure to enjoy all the finest onboard amenities and impeccable service offered aboard these luxury cruise ships. Experience a place like no other; cruise Africa.
Africa Cruise Vacation - Africa Cruises in South Africa
At the southern tip of South Africa, Cape Town is situated between the sea and the flat-topped Table Mountain. Cape Town is a wonderful port of call on cruises in South Africa, because the city's center is very compact and makes for getting around by foot very easy. The historic Company Gardens are located in the city center and make for a lovely afternoon stroll. Other options in the area while on one of the cruises in South Africa are museums, parks, and historic buildings. A famous historic building is the Castle, which, built between 1666 and 1679, is the oldest building in South Africa. If time allows, cruises in South Africa will give you the chance to travel outside the city and enjoy great surfing beaches and impressive wineries; you can even take a cable car ride up Table Mountain for spectacular views.
Cruises in South Africa give you a chance to experience a land rich with history and culture. At port Richard's Bay, the culture of the Zulu tribe is evident throughout the region and has become quite an attraction. Game reserves and cultural villages that are found outside of the city seem to represent what some people feel is the "real" Africa, what many people want to see when they take cruises in South Africa.
Durban is a welcome port on cruises in South Africa. It is one of the biggest ports on the African continent, with a population of almost one million people. Lush trees and gardens fill this subtropical city that people consider to be the Asian capital of South Africa due to its large Indian population. The city's beachfront has become a popular destination with those taking cruises in South Africa, as well as tourists in general; for that reason, as well as the success of the port, Durban exists as a booming 21st century economy.
Cruises in South Africa often stop in the small town of East London; be sure to visit the natural history museum there. It is said to contain the world's only surviving dodo bird egg as well as a mounted coelacanth fish which is said to have been caught near East London in 1938 when the fish was thought to be extinct.
Africa Cruise Vacation - Africa Cruises to West Coast Africa
If your Africa cruises vacation needs take you up the West Coast of Africa, you'll be pleased to reach the Cape Verde Islands where cobble stone streets are donned with Mediterranean-style houses, Latin rhythm and African inspiration. Its population has emerged from mixed European and African ancestry and into a distinct Cape Verdean culture. The official language is Portuguese, while the local tongue is Crioulo, a Creole dialect comprised of Portuguese and African elements.
Your cruise to Africa will also make a stop at the vibrant city of Senegal, where tree-lined streets, open-air markets, and outdoor cafes make it the most popular nation in West Africa for European visitors. Contemporary architecture, galleries and boutiques mix with colonial-style buildings and street vendors. Play golf, tennis, go fishing or enjoy your favorite water sports at your pick of fine resorts and then return to the comfort of your luxury cruise ship.
Africa Cruise Vacation - Africa Cruises to Canary Islands
Several Africa cruises take you far up the west coast out to Spain's Canary Islands then on to other European travel destinations like Gibraltar UK, Corsica France, and Genoa Italy. This is a popular option for folks that want to continue on a land tour in Europe after their cruise or for people who just couldn't decide between and an Africa cruises vacation or Europe.
Lying off the northwest coast of the continent, the Canary Islands are a great place to stop on a cruise to Africa. Known for the dramatically diverse ecology, the Canary Islands are said to be a place where you can pick bananas, throw snowballs, and swim in the Atlantic all in the same day. Tenerife, the largest of seven main islands, is a popular destination. See collections of mummies, skulls and bones of the aboriginal Guanche people, on a tour of the Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology cruise to Africa. Take a cable car ride up to the top of Pico del Tiede, Spain's highest snow-capped peak. If shopping is more your speed, boutique and specialty shops abound, as well as beautiful white-sanded beaches including the exotic black and gold sand beaches.
Africa Vacations - Africa Cruises to Seychelles, Madagascar, Mauritus
An Africa cruises vacation that includes the islands of Seychelles is something special. The Seychelles are 1000 miles from the nearest mainland of Africa. Rugged mountains, lagoons, splendid beaches and secluded coves make up these spectacular Eden-like sanctuaries. The people are a fusion of three continents--Africa, Asia and Europe--and together have created a unique culture with the use of three languages: Creole, French, and English. An Africa cruises vacation will put you in Mah, the largest island in the archipelago and home to the capital, Victoria, which is ringed by steep, magnificent mountains. Sites to see in Victoria include museums, the cathedral, a tea factory and the famous clock tower. Botanical gardens and an open-air market make for lovely wandering afternoons. There are also nature trails, white powder beaches with calming waters and one beach, unprotected by the reef, lets in waves suitable for great surfing.
When you cruise Africa, you'll love the next port of call. Praslin, Seychelles, is 14.5 square miles of tropical paradise a simple breath of fresh island air. Praslin is best known for the Vall de Mai World Heritage Site, where a botanical rarity, the coco de mer palm, grows wild. Praslin is also known for its pristine beaches and fabulous marine life. Despite the recent influx of tourists, the island has managed to keep its unspoiled character and breathtaking views. Athol Thomas managed to capture the feeling of Praslin, Seychelles, in his novel, the aptly-named, Forgotten Eden.
Neighboring island, La Digue, is the perfect concept of tropical island paradise. The general means of transportation on this peaceful island is bicycle or oxcart. It's no bigger than four square miles, which makes it a wonderful place to explore by foot. Excellent snorkeling can be found anywhere on its coast because the island is protected on all but one side by a magnificent coral reef. Home to a large nature reserve, La Digue is a virtual wonderland of exotic land birds. The relaxed rhythm of life, the well-preserved colonial-style houses and the fragrant blooms all make for the perfect backdrop when you cruise Africa.
Located just off the Northwest Coast of Madagascar lies the remote island of Nosy Be, another laid-back Africa cruise destination. Featuring old colonial-style buildings, busy markets filled with handmade crafts and tiny boutiques. Take a trip through the lush countryside to Mt. Passot, the highest point of the island offering extraordinary panoramic views. A quick trip to neighboring island, Nosy Komba, known for its Lemur preserve, is often a favorite among passengers who cruise Africa. Mauritus, located just off the east coast of Madagascar, is yet another exquisite island in the Indian Ocean. Volcanic lakes and inactive craters can be found scattered about the island. Mauritius boasts one of the largest unbroken coral reefs on the planet.
The island of Reunion is located just under 500 miles east of Madagascar. The island is best known for its still active volcano, Piton de la Fournaise, and three extinct craters known as cirques. The rugged interior of the island as well as its Creole-influenced culture is what draws most of its visitors although there are of course beautiful beaches on its shoreline.
For those guests looking to cruise Africa for a little longer, some cruise lines offer a continued Africa cruise vacation across the Indian Ocean over to South Asia, visiting Sri Lanka, Malaysia, Thailand, and Singapore.
Africa Vacations - Africa Cruises to Northeast Africa and Middle East
A cruise to Africa beginning in Egypt offers an undeniably fascinating tour of Africa. These voyages tend to begin in Port Said, along the Suez Canal, stopping in other Egyptian ports, and then continue on to Jordan and end in Dubai or the islands of Seychelles.
Founded in 1859 when work on the Suez Canal began, Port Said, Egypt, offers an escape from the oppressive heat of Cairo. Due to its positioning near the canal, Port Said has suffered some destruction from the Suez crisis as well as the war with Israel. Although most buildings have been rebuilt since such attacks, the main highlight to Port Said is the Suez Canal, one of the greatest accomplishments in modern engineering. It represents hundreds of years of effort to improve trade by connecting the Red Sea and the Mediterranean Sea, and allows the ships that cruise Africa and the Mediterranean to save incalculable amounts time.
By the time of its completion in 1869, the Suez Canal had cost the lives of thousands of laborers and incurred massive debts. But with about a hundred ships a day making the 15-hour long journey through the canal, its success has become Egypt's prime source of economy. When you cruise Africa and head through the hundred miles of the Suez Canal, it will prove to be an exciting experience you'll never forget.
Other Egyptian stops include the port town of Sharm-el-Sheikh, near the southernmost tip of the Sinai Peninsula where the Straits of Tiran meet the Gulf of Aqaba. Over the centuries Sharm-el-Sheikh also suffered as a target for many rulers because of its convenient positioning on the Sinai. The most recent attack was in the sixties and seventies during the war with Israel. The smaller, quieter beach town of Na'ama Bay is a short drive from the port and offers many enjoyable vacation options including exotic Red Sea diving and glass bottom boat rides.
Cruise ships often dock in Aqaba, known as the port gateway to Jordan's selection of some of the most fascinating places in the world. Excursions to the rose-red City of Petra as well as the spectacular desert and mountain region of Wadi Rum are on the tops of most visitors must see list. Aqaba itself has shopping areas, hotels and restaurants, as well as sites of some recent archaeological discoveries that date back to the 3rd century.
A cruise to Africa in this part of the continent oftentimes dock at Djibouti, a small country rich in recent history that lies sandwiched between Ethiopia and Somalia. The majority of this country is its port at the southern entrance to the Red Sea. Djibouti's importance increased during both the Gulf War and the U.N. intervention in Somalia due to its serving as a base for Allied troops.
The country was sparsely populated with nomadic people until the French realized the importance of its strategic location and moved in. Political pressure, local unrest and the turbulent situation developing in the horn of Africa eventually led to the French withdrawing from Djibouti in 1976. Although independent, the country was split equally into two tribes, both Muslim with nomadic culture, fighting for control. The country also harbors some 30,000 refugees as a result of various wars in neighboring Ethiopia and Somalia.
The port town itself retains elements of African, European, and Arab culture due to its diverse occupations. When you cruise Africa, the market near the mosque in the center of town is will probably the main attraction. Most people who take a cruise to Africa and visit the country come for its undeniably gorgeous desert scenery, interesting sea life, and white sand beaches. Due to the poor conditions that exist in Djibouti, most folks agree that a cruise to Africa the best and safest way to see this country.
The United Arab Emirates city of Dubai is known as the City of Merchants and the sports capital of the Middle East. It is often a fine beginning or end of a cruise to Africa and is quite noteworthy among world-class travelers, businessmen, and the international jet set. Its streets are clean and safe and, in fact, Dubai was voted as one of the safest cities in the world. Comfort and conveniences from the Western world, combined with Arabian charm as well as a high tolerance for different lifestyles are only part of what make the city so enjoyable. Sougs and shopping malls offer some of the world's best prices. Museums, championship golf courses, horse races, fine dining, watersports and desert safaris! What more would you what when you cruise Africa?