(1:10 p.m. EDT) -- Often times, there are fascinating tidbits of cruise goodness that don’t make it into our full-fledged coverage.
Here are a few noteworthy items that cruisers should know about in this week's edition of Cruise News Roundup:
Azamara Unveils Cruises from South Africa This Winter
Azamara is charting a course for South Africa this winter, unveiling six back-to-back voyages aboard Azamara Pursuit that will also restart the company's pre-and-post-cruise land explorations with leading safari operator, Micato Safaris.
The sailings, which depart roundtrip from Cape Town, are country-intensive itineraries that offer passengers the opportunity to explore South Africa's unique destinations and wild landscapes during port calls that include a total of 16 late-night calls and 11 overnight stays throughout the season.
Our Favorite Things Aboard Viking Venus
Regent Seven Seas Splendor Returns to the Seas
Silversea's New S.A.L.T. Program
Wonder of the Seas Construction Update: Sea Trials
Wonder of the Seas Completes Sea Trials
Carnival Mardi Gras: Free Dining on the Lido Deck
Carnival Mardi Gras: RedFrog Tiki Bar & Summer Landing
Carnival Mardi Gras' Excel Suite and Loft 19
Live From Carnival's Mardi Gras: The French Quarter
BOLT: We Try Carnival Mardi Gras' Roller Coaster at Sea
NCL's Restart: What It's Like On The First Norwegian Cruise Ship Back in 16 Months
Cruise Critic and JJ Cruise : Our Experience Onboard Celebrity Edge (June 2021)
Here's What It's Like Onboard the First Large Cruise Ship to Alaska in 21 Months
LIVE Q&A: Cruise Critic and Emma Cruises Chat About All Things Cruise
Perfect Day at CocoCay: Here's How We Spent 2 DAYS at Royal Caribbean's Private Island
Our Celebrity Silhouette Cruise Experience: March 2020 vs. July 2021
Cruise Executives Wish Cruise Critic a Happy 25th Anniversary
Freedom of the Seas: What's It Like Onboard a Test Cruise? (Cruise Critic & Royal Caribbean Blog
Q&A with Celebrity Cruises' Captain Kate McCue (2021)
Back on Celebrity Silhouette: Here's What It's Like On One Of Our Favorite Ships 15 Months Later
Freedom Of The Seas Resumes Sailing With New Rules
Cruise Critic | EatSleepCruise: What's It Like Onboard Celebrity Edge?
‘Top Chef’ Winner Kristen Kish Joins Holland America Line’s Award-winning Culinary Council
Celebrity Apex -- Video Tour of The Magic Carpet
Q&A: Cruisers and Crew Chat About The Joy of Cruising's Return
Celebrity Apex -- Eden
Celebrity Apex -- The Retreat
Celebrity Apex -- Video Tour of the Infinite Veranda Cabin
Q&A with Celebrity Apex's Cruise Director
Celebrity Apex -- Pools & Resort Deck
Celebrity Apex -- Embarkation Process (2021)
Live From Adventure of the Seas: What's the Same, What's Different and What's Better?
Here's What We Packed For Our Royal Caribbean Cruise (June 2021)
5 Reasons MSC Cruises' Yacht Club Is Worth The Splurge
Celebrity to Restart from U.S. Homeport, PLUS Royal Caribbean Given Green Light for Test Cruises!
MSC Virtuosa Ship Tour: What It's Like Onboard MSC's Newest Ship (May 2021)
LIVE From MSC Virtuosa! Embarkation, the Buffet, COVID Protocols and MORE!
CRUISE NEWS Countdown! This Week's Top 5 Stories
NEWS: CDC Loosens Mask Restrictions; Norwegian Reveals NEW Ship Class
NEWS: What Does the Latest CDC Guidance Mean? We Explain, Cruisers & Cruise Lines React
Alaska 2021: Inside Passage Businesses Talk About A Devastating Season Without Cruise Tourists
CRUISE NEWS: Two Brand-New Cruise Ships From Disney And Celebrity Revealed, See Photos!
BREAKING NEWS: CDC Says Cruises From the U.S. Could Start by "Mid-July"
CRUISE NEWS: Two States Sue CDC Over Cruise Restart, New MSC Virtuosa Photos & More
CRUISE NEWS: The CDC Battle Over Cruise Continues!
NEWS: Norwegian Makes HUGE Waves with Restart Plans (Bonus! Live From an Alaska Cruise)
Where Can You Cruise To -- And From -- In Summer 2021?
Odyssey of the Seas -- From Steel Cutting to Delivery 2021
CRUISE NEWS: The CDC's Silence And Where Vaccinated Passengers Can Sail in 2021 -- VIDEO
BONUS NEWS! Royal Caribbean, Celebrity to Resume Cruising in June
BREAKING: A Big Cruise Line Says Guests Need the Jab, Another Announces U.K. Return
NEWS: This Cruise Line is Returning to Cruise SOON!
Odyssey of the Seas' Debut in Israel, and Where Royal Caribbean Might Restart Next
Video Of Odyssey Of The Seas Conveyance March 2021
Cruise Restart, Rising Cruise Prices & The Vaccine's Impact On Bookings (Video)
Exciting Disney Cruise News, More Vaccine Mandates & MSC Seashore Sneak Peek (VIDEO)
Video Q&A With MSC Grandiosa's Hotel Director, Giuseppe Pane
Why Lines Aren't Canceling Alaska Cruises, Robot News and More
CDC Mask Mandate, Cruise Vaccine News and Canada's Cruise Ban Through 2022
Cruisers and Cruise Lines Talk Vaccines, Big Azamara News and More
Royal Caribbean Group Sells Popular Cruise Line, Mandatory Vaccines and More
Exciting Cruise News From Carnival Corp., Pause Extensions & More
Exciting New Ships in 2021 - This Week in Cruise News
Rudi Sodamin Makes A Special, Thanksgiving-themed "Food Faces" Video For Cruise Critic
Coin Ceremony For Celebrity Cruises' New Ship, Celebrity Beyond
Cruising In Maine During COVID-19, On the Only Ship Sailing in the U.S.
Former Cruise Ship Captain Offers "Ghost Tours" of Empty Cruise Liners in South England
Variety Cruises' Galileo, The First Eastern Mediterranean Cruise In The COVID Era
Royal Caribbean Group Announces E-muster, Keyless Cabin Check-in And Other App Improvements
Drone Footage Of MSC Grandiosa Docked In Genoa For First Sailing Since The COVID-19 Pandemic
How to Make a Towel Animals Swans, Dogs and Elephants
Towel Animals with Carnival Cruise Line and Cruise Critic: How to Make Towel Swans
Towel Animals with Carnival Cruise Line and Cruise Critic: How to Make a Towel Dog
Towel Animals with Carnival Cruise Line and Cruise Critic: How to Make a Towel Elephant
MSC Cruises - Smart Future Of Guest Experiences
First Look At Virgin Voyages' Scarlet Lady
Bolt - Top Deck Roller-Coaster at Sea on Carnival Mardi Gras
Norwegian Encore - Hull Art Reveal - Artist Eduardo Arranz Bravo
Disney Cruise Line Announces Disney Wish
First Look At MSC Bellissima
Virgin Voyages Unveils Beach Club And Entertainment
Royal Caribbean Odyssey Of The Seas Steel Cutting At Meyer Werft
Ritz Carlton Yacht Collection To Debut In 2020
Virgin Voyages Reveals Suite Design New Cruise Ship
Celebrity Edge Sneak Peek: Why You Should Be Excited About Celebrity Cruises' Newest Ship
Celebrity Edge Shipyard Hyperlapse Tour
Marella Cruises Cast Members Rehearse New Show Debut
Shipyard Tour: Royal Caribbean’s Symphony Of The Seas Gets Its Finishing Touches -- Video
How To Make Carnival Cruise Line's Famous Warm Chocolate Melting Cake - Video
Shaquille "Shaq" O'neal Named Chief Fun Officer Of Carnival Cruise Line
Carnival Cruise Line's "Choose Fun" Commercial
Harmony Of The Seas Video Tour – Inside Look At One Of Royal Caribbean’s Most Popular Cruise Ships
MSC Seaside Video Tour – An Inside Look At MSC's Cruise Ship
Symphony Of The Seas Video Tour
Live From MSC Seaside: A Cruise Ship Designed For The Outdoors
Carnival Splendor Photo Tour
Royal Caribbean’s Spectrum Of The Seas Celebrates Keel Laying
Sea Beyond: An Innovative Cruise Experience By Royal Caribbean
Carnival Conquest Photo Tour
Carnival Pride Photo Tour
Carnival Dream Photo Tour
Sneak Peak At Symphony Of The Seas
Carnival Sunshine Photo Tour
Carnival Breeze Photo Tour
What’s Your Size? Royal Caribbean's Oasis Class Vs. Majesty Of The Seas - Video
Royal Caribbean's Oasis Of The Seas Photo Tour
MSC Meraviglia Dining Guide
Spectrum Of The Seas Steel Cutting At Meyer Werft
MSC Meraviglia Ship Tour
Photo Tour of Carnival Liberty
5 Best Restaurants for Free Eats on Carnival Sunshine
Royal Caribbean's Enchantment Of The Seas Highlights
The Himalayan Bridge On MSC Meraviglia - Ropes Course POV Video
Harvest Caye Cruise Port Video Tour
Pictures of MSC Seaside: Before and After
Photo Tour of Royal Caribbean's Allure Of The Seas
SkyRide On Carnival Vista: Cruise Critic Tries It
Carnival Vista Top Deck Attractions
Behind the Scenes at CSMART - Carnival's Arison Maritime Training Center
What It Means To Be Loyal To Royal
7 Can’t-Miss Experiences on Allure Of The Seas
Video Tour of Allure Of The Seas' Bars
Cruise Pier Runners In Cozumel -- Carnival Liberty
Harmony Of The Seas Youth Place
Harmony Of The Seas Pool And Sports Zone
Harmony Of The Seas Central Park On Royal Caribbean International
Harmony Of The Seas Boardwalk
Harmony Of The Seas Royal Promenade
Harmony Of The Seas Entertainment Place
Harmony Of The Seas Vitality Spa And Fitness Center
Perfect Storm Water Slides On Harmony Of The Seas
Cruise Critic Tours Harmony Of The Seas
Harmony Of The Seas Cabins - Video Tour - Cruise Critic
Cruise Critic Tours Harmony Of The Seas
Greased Lightnin': Royal Caribbean Brings Another Broadway Hit
Plunging Into Adventure On The Tallest Slide At Sea: Royal Caribbean Reveals 10-Story Ultimate Abyss
Cruise Critic Flowrider On Royal Caribbean's Freedom Of The Seas
Cruise Critic Tours Anthem of the Seas
Anthem Of The Seas Welcomes Gigi The Giraffe
Cruise Critic Quick Chat With Carnival CEO Arnold Donald
HRH Prince Phillip Visits Cunard's Fleet
Royal Rendezvous: 3 Cunard Queens Arrive In Southampton
Celebrity Silhouette's Conveyance (2011)
Oasis Of The Seas Flowrider - Cruise Critic Goes Surfing
Oasis Of The Seas Jazz On 4 Performance
Oasis Of The Seas Royal Promenade (2009)
Oasis Of The Seas Royal Promenade Parade (2009)
Oasis Of The Seas Carousel In Action (2009)
Oasis Of The Seas Ship Tour -- Main Dining Room (2009)
Azamara Pursuit's new South African adventures are possible thanks to the reopening of international cruise tourism in the region. A special 12-night Golf-themed voyage, and excursions curated in conjunction with Abercrombie & Kent.
Passengers are also able to choose from a wide array of pre-and-post cruise extensions offered in conjunction with Micato Safaris, including visits to Victoria Falls and Chobe Game Park, or a journey to Greater Kruger National Park and the country's Western Cape wine region.
“A trip to Africa is a once-in-a-lifetime experience, the kind of travel Azamara is known for, which is why I am so pleased to confirm our guests are now welcome back to South Africa following the reopening of its ports to international cruising,” says Azamara President, Carol Cabezas. “Once again Micato Safaris will deliver unrivaled pre-and post-cruise land programs, as they share Azamara’s love of travel, exploration and value of creating one-of-a-kind experiences for travelers.”
Azamara Pursuit's winter South African voyages are now available for booking.
Jamaica Prepares to Welcome Carnival, Royal Caribbean Back to Its Shores
Jamaica is preparing to welcome ships from Carnival and Royal Caribbean back to its shores, having just reopened to cruise traffic last month.
The country is expecting over 110 visits from Carnival Cruise Line vessels between October 2021 and April 2022, and visits from Royal Caribbean vessels beginning in November as cruises to the Caribbean ramp up for the traditional winter season and fleet restarts continue to grow.
Jamaica is home to several popular ports of call on many Western Caribbean itineraries, including Ocho Rios and Montego Bay. Passengers travelling to the country prize destinations like
“Both Carnival and Royal Caribbean are critical partners for Jamaica’s tourism sector. In addition to the destination’s wider economic recovery,” said Minister of Tourism for Jamaica, Edmund Bartlett, in a statement. “We are seeing a welcome return of vessels with the recognition that Jamaica’s Resilient Corridors offer a safe environment for our visitors, tourism workers and the general population. The world has taken note of Jamaica’s protocols being implemented safely and effectively, as these plans clearly demonstrate.”
Bartlett said the return of cruise ships to Jamaican shores marks steady growth for the island nation towards pre-COVID-19 tourism levels. Local officials had been meeting with cruise executives to ensure a safe return of cruise vessels to Jamaica in time for the popular winter Caribbean cruise season.
MSC Restarts Cruises in Brazil, South Africa
MSC has received approval to restart its popular cruises in South America and South Africa after a pause lasting nearly two years due to the COVID-19 health pandemic.
MSC confirmed it will send three ships -- MSC Preziosa, MSC Seaside and MSC Splendida -- to operate cruises from Brazil. The ships, which will offer itineraries between November 2021 and March 2022, will be the latest in the MSC Cruises fleet to restart operations.
MSC Seaside, which was formerly based in Miami prior to the pandemic, will make its inaugural season in Brazil this year, homeporting in Santos (Sao Paulo), and Salvador, Brazil, noted for its Afro-Brazilian culture and Portuguese-influenced architecture. s
Like Azamara above, MSC has also been granted approval to restart cruise operations in South Africa. Exact deployment and itinerary plans are still being drawn up for those voyages, which in the past have traditionally operated from Cape Town to sail the eastern shores of the country, venturing as far north as Maputo, Mozambique.
MSC will announce full deployment details of its South African cruises for the 2021-2022 season in the coming weeks. Select itineraries departing from South America are available for booking immediately.