Not just calling at destinations, but REALLY visiting them, Azamara Club Cruises announced the cruise line’s annual deployment for 2016. Azamara’s twin boutique ships, Azamara Journey and Azamara Quest, will take travelers to some of the most intriguing locales in Australia and New Zealand, the Far East and Southeast Asia, the Arabian Gulf, and the West Indies, totaling 204 ports of call in 70 countries.
Delivering more authentic experiences with the cruise line’s hallmark longer stays and more overnights in ports for night touring, Azamara Journey and Azamara Quest remain in port when most other ships have departed for the day. The ships will stay past 8 p.m. during more than 175 calls and overnight on more than 100 calls.
Destination Immersion Down Under
For its inaugural Australia season, Azamara Quest will sail five voyages, ranging from 10- to 17-night itineraries, which will deliver the culture and nightlife of Australia and New Zealand.
Destination Asia Adventures
Azamara Quest will then sail three voyages throughout the Far East on 13- and 16-night itineraries that visit intriguing destinations throughout Japan, China, and Southeast Asia. The ship will then transition in April to the Mediterranean on a fascinating voyage spanning the Far East, the Arabian Gulf, and Aegean Sea, arriving in Athens (Piraeus), Greece, on May 17.
In the Arabian Gulf, travelers can join Azamara Journey in late 2016 for an exclusive 1,001 Arabian Nights round-trip Dubai voyage – a 10-night itinerary that explores some of the most exciting new cities in the region, featuring overnight stays in Dubai and Abu Dhabi in the UAE, and Muscat, Oman. Combined with visits to Qatar, Bahrain and Khasab, Oman, guests have the opportunity to deeply immerse themselves with the many attractions in this region – from the new Guggenheim, Louvre and Zayed National Museums in Abu Dhabi – set to open in early 2016, to the desert fjords of the Musandam Peninsula.
Azamara’s longer stays and more overnights also provide guests the opportunity to dine at some of the world’s finest hotels in the region, such as the Burj Al Arab in Dubai and the Al Bustan Palace Hotel in Muscat.
Covering the entire continent from the Baltic to the North seas and the Mediterranean to the Black Sea, Azamara delivers all the authentic history, cultures and flavors of Europe like no one can. The cruise line’s smaller ships offer access that larger vessels cannot and place guests at the heart of such jewel-destinations such as Nice and Sanary-sur-Mer, France; Portovenere (Cinque Terre) and Amalfi, Italy; and Chania, Crete and Patmos, Greece – to name just a few.
From late-April through September, Azamara Journey will sail five- to 13-night itineraries, most of which can be combined to create uniquely individual voyages of 24 nights and longer that do not repeat a port of call. The July 3 and Sept. 9 voyages sail round-trip from Venice for seven nights and offer a full-day visit to the seldom-visited Albania, plus an opportunity to visit the capital city of Tiranë. The Aug. 9, 10-night voyage from Athens to Istanbul is the perfect summer holiday exploring the hidden jewels along the Turquoise Coast with stops at charming Kas, Fethiye, Marmaris and Cesme in Turkey, as well as less-frequented Sitia, Crete and Patmos, Greece. Via Cesme, guests will be particularly enchanted by an opportunity for a nighttime visit to the village of Alacati, famous for its traditional and unspoiled architecture.
From May through November, Azamara Quest will offer longer voyages in the Mediterranean, North and Baltic seas, ranging from eight to 15 nights. The ship will begin its Europe season on May 25, with the cruise line’s annual sell-out Monaco Formula 1 Grand Prix voyage, which features a new stop in Livorno, where guests have easy access to Florence, Pisa and Lucca. Azamara Quest will then set out from Nice on May 30, which includes an overnight stay and dock in the city of Seville, walking distance of the famous Cathedral. No other ship can travel closer and, instead of a 90 minute bus ride (each way), Azamara Quest guests also will uniquely enjoy a scenic river cruise through the Andalusian countryside and make passage through a very narrow drawbridge and lock just prior to Seville.
Azamara Quest will then ply the North and Baltic seas on a series of Northern Europe voyages, the peak time for experiencing the White Nights in Copenhagen, Stockholm and some of the most romantic Hanseatic cities in Germany - Luebeck and Rostock. Guests on the popular annual British Open voyage, sailing July 11, will visit charming Isle of Man and Guernsey, as well as popular favorites such as Dublin, Belfast and Waterford, Ireland. The highlight will be a visit to the Championship finals of the British Open in Scotland at the Royal Troon Golf Club. The ship’s Nov. 11 voyage will then span three continents, crossing from Athens to South Beach with stops in Tunis, Tunisia and Huelva, Spain – gateway of Christopher Columbus to the West Indies – and cross the Atlantic to St. Maarten and the British Virgin Islands.
Destination West Indies and Beyond
Throughout the spring and winter seasons, travelers also can take in the vibrant colors and cultures nestled among the Caribbean, The Isthmus from Panama to Mexico, and Baja California to Los Angeles. Azamara Journey will take guests on 10- and 11-night West Indies voyages, round-trip from Miami, to visit idyllic islands that combine modern chic with colonial charm. In February, the ship will transit through the Panama Canal by day to the Pacific and provide guests the opportunity to explore to the rain forest of secluded Rosa Peninsula in Costa Rica; the colonial city of Antigua, Guatemala; the Cerro Verde National Park in El Salvador and the lovely beaches of Huatulco, Puerto Vallarta and Cabo San Lucas in Mexico. Travelers can choose to combine these voyages into an exciting Extended Voyage of 33 nights from Miami to Los Angeles, departing Jan. 27 or a 36-night return voyage on Feb. 29.