Oh, merry Caribbean – on Christmas, the blue of the western Atlantic sparkles in the sunlight, and Cuba proves to be a refuge of jovial days. The rhythms of Son and Salsa fill the air, and the heritage of the sugar barons takes you to picturesque colonial towns and magnificent landscapes. A youthful island becomes a beach paradise and Havana a melting pot of experiences for two nights. Welcoming 2014 with a good cigar – an authentic way of ringing in the new year in this part of the world.
from La Guaira to Merida
|Cruise dates:||from 21.12.2013 to 07.01.2014 (18 days)|
| Your ship:|| MS EUROPA|
| Cruise number:|| EUR1400|
This cruise is operated in German. For individual programmes kindly ask our travel concierge.
Highlights of this cruise
Highlights of this cruise
- UNESCO World Cultural Heritage Sites: the port and city centre of Willemstad*, the historic centre of Cienfuegos*, Trinidad and Valle de los Ingenios* as well as the historic district of Havana*
- White beaches of the Turks and Caicos Islands
- Christmas and New Year’s Eve gala on board
* These arrangements are not included in the cruise price and are subject to changes
La Guaira (Caracas)/Venezuela
Come aboard in South America for multifaceted days in the Caribbean.
In the 17th century, the Dutch hoisted their flag on this enchanting ABC island, and so Willemstad* looks like a miniature version of Holland with its Dutch-style canals and pastel-coloured gabled houses. Divi-divi trees and cacti are characteristic features of the landscape of Curacao*. Windmills, old mansions and former slave huts provide insights into the history of the island featuring stunning beaches, among them Knip Beach.
In the homeland of Bob Marley, you can get into the mood for an exceptional Christmas against an exotic backdrop today. A rather calm, but no less enjoyable experience awaits you on the raft trip on the Martha Brae* taking you through an untouched landscape and past coconut and banana plantations. The wealth of tropical flowers of the Coyaba Gardens* also augurs tranquillity. The sound of gushing water is to be heard at Jamaica’s most famous waterfalls, the Dunn’s River Falls*. Here, the agitated water makes its way almost 200 m down to the sea via many cascades.
Santiago de Cuba/Cuba
On Christmas Day, the EUROPA reaches Cuba’s secret capital, and you have time until the following morning to discover the buoyant “cradle of the Revolution” on the coast of the Caribbean Sea. The heart of Santiago de Cuba* is the Parque Céspedes upon which the pretty angel of the cathedral keeps a vigilant eye. At the fortress El Morro, you will be delighted with the marvellous view across the port and the city. Travel into the hinterland by all-terrain vehicle to Baconao Park* – a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve – with its distinctive rock formation, the Gran Piedra.
In the 19th century, sugar cultivation brought major riches to “La Perla del Sur“, the pearl of the south. In the course of a guided walk*, you will be fascinated by its enchanting historic city centre featuring neo-classical, art nouveau and art deco architecture. The Botanic Garden* with its rich abundance of plants from all over the world is to be found just outside the city. Stunningly beautiful Trinidad* with its colonial buildings is another legacy of the sugar barons. Just like the town, the nearby “Valley of the Sugar Mills“ has been declared a UNESCO World Cultural Heritage Site and provides insights into Cuba’s history.
Isla de la Juventud/Cuba
In the past, the “Isle of Youth“ was a notorious prison island. Today, the peaceful little island is the perfect place for relaxing on the beach and marvelling at the fantastic snorkelling territories.
For two nights, the EUROPA lies at anchor off the coast of one of the oldest cities in the New World. Havana’s showpiece is the historic district* with its gorgeous colonial buildings, churches and pretty squares – an affectionately restored UNESCO World Cultural Heritage Site. The Rum Museum provides insights into the production of Cuba’s national drink, and in the Hotel Ambos Mundos, you can admire the wonderful view of the city which, incidentally, Ernest Hemingway also enjoyed for a number of years. In the course of a city tour*, you have time to explore the colonial roads of the historic district, too. You can also travel through Havana by vintage car* as though time had been turned back to the 1950s. With old, immaculately polished American automobiles, you will be chauffeured to the statue of Christ, via the Prado all the way to the wealthy residential area Miramar and visit the huge cemetery Colón. The legendary Tropicana* is Cuba’s most famous cabaret. Under the sparkling starry sky, long-legged beauties take you with them on a nostalgic journey through the world of Cuban music. Outside of the city lies one of Cuba’s most beautiful landscapes – in the valley of Viñales*, bizarre karst cones steeply rise from the plain.
Grand Turk/Turks and Caicos Islands/Great Britain
Swimming, snorkelling or simply relaxing on the snow-white beach – the largest of the Turks Islands augurs a wonderful time ashore.
George Town/Grand Cayman/Cayman Islands/Great Britain
The world’s fifth largest centre of the financial industry is to be found at the heart of the Caribbean. Near George Town*, the capital of the British overseas territory, lie both “Hell“, an eerie-looking rock formation, and one of the best beaches in the Caribbean – go for a stroll along Seven Mile Beach. The stingrays on the north coast are so used to humans you can feed them. A marvellous experience while swimming and snorkelling* in “Stingray City“.
Leave the EUROPA to embark on your homebound journey – or extend your stay a little with the post-cruise programme* Mexico City.
* These arrangements are not included in the cruise price. The shore activities listed here are in the planning stage and are subject to changes.
= at anchor
Please note that our pre- and post-cruise programmes are conducted in German.
For individual programmes kindly consult your travel agent.
Following programmes we offer in German:
POST-CRUISE PROGRAMME A: HIGHLIGHTS OF MEXICO CITY
HOTEL LANDHAUS WACHTELHOF: 2-DAY CRUISE ARRANGEMENT “ATLANTIC“