The MSC cruise ship. Picture: File photo

The ocean breeze, the sweeping sea views, the mesmerising sound of gently lapping waters, the glitz, the glamour, the heightened romanticism and the sheer pleasure of life on board while you’re heading towards unimagined beauty … those aren’t the only allures of cruising. Perhaps, more than anything, the true allure of cruising is the ocean of choice.
 
And none have perfected it more than MSC Cruises, the world’s largest privately-owned cruise line and brand market leader in Europe, South America and South Africa.
 
‘Time and time again our guests tell us how much they love the comfort of cruising, the simplicity of it, and how every cruise is an utterly unique experience. There’s so much choice within our offerings, we’re told it’s like candy for the soul.’ says MSC Cruises South Africa Managing Director Ross Volk.
 
Ask yourself what you want, and you shall have it. A two night weekend getaway? MSC Cruises specialises in ‘nowhere weekend cruises’ from both Durban and Cape Town. These popular weekend getaways are the perfect escape for those who need a little downtime on calm waters.
 
Need a longer break? In our local waters, you can book a breezy escape with MSC Cruises for up to 11 nights. Internationally, if you’re ready for some major bucket-list fulfilment, you could even embark on a once-in-a-lifetime, life-long dream, 119-day MSC World Cruise that crosses six continents, and calls at 49 unique destinations in 32 countries.
 


When it comes to destinations, MSC Cruises always heads for the dreamiest of places, and with 46 cruises in the 2017/18 South African summer season, MSC Cruises promises more than ever before.
 
Mozambique’s Pomene is the newest sun-kissed darling on South Africa’s MSC Cruise calendar. Take a ride with MSC and step onto Pomene’s astonishingly white sands in style, where blue lagoons, unexplored coral reefs, and fairy-tale-like mangroves lie in wait.
 
And then there’s always Mozambique’s ever-in-demand, Caribbean-esque, Inhaca Archipelago. Portuguese Island is a small, enchanting, uninhabited island just six kilometres long, where you can dip into the warm, crystalline ocean waters, find secluded bays, lay in the sun undisturbed, or dance and play volleyball and eat to your heart’s content.
 
Or you could cruise a little further afield and float by the haunting beauty of the Skeleton Coast on a voyage to Walvis Bay. Embraced by the spectacular Namib Desert, and rich in marine and bird life, Walvis Bay is one of Namibia’s gems of outstanding natural beauty. Indulge in Walvis Bay oysters, take in the architecture, delight in the abundance of seabirds, or make the most of Namibia’s extreme sports capital and leap into adventures like quad-biking, dune buggy racing, and sandboarding.
 
Of course no-one could resist the explosion of nature that moves from pure white tropical beaches to mountainous lush forests, peppered with bold architectural works and a variety of cultures on the island of Réunion. Or the inescapable luxury of Mauritius’ capital Port Louis.
 
And those are just the destinations. The abundance of food, entertainment, and activities on board are legendry – even amongst those who have never cruised before – but what most people don’t realise, Ross tells us, is that MSC guests are able to tailor their on board experience far more than they realise.
 
‘We have couples who come for a secluded romantic getaway, guests who party sunup and sundown, families that grab all the fun they can share, people who are on a health-kick or an indulgent fest of me-time … and they’re all on the same cruise. There is more than enough space, enough choice, and an ocean of freedom to make your holiday exactly what your heart desires.’
 
And if all this sounds like it might be out of your budget, give yourself a pleasant surprise and check out the package deals on www.msccruises.co.za. You’d be hard-pressed to find such a rich and wild experience in a land-based holiday for the same value.
 
Perhaps that’s the best choice of all.