With coastlines stretching 16,000 miles, and hugging the Mediterranean sea to the north, the Suez Canal and Red Sea in the North East, the Indian Ocean to the South East, and Atlantic Ocean on its western shores, Africa certainly offers lots of exciting cruising opportunities. The experiences you'll have and the sights you'll see on a cruise around Africa is as varied as its countries and the seas and oceans which lap against its shores.
North African ports tend to be combined with European ports on a Mediterranean cruise, but they offer an insight into an entirely different way of life from that you'll see during the European ports of call. You'll have the chance to barter in renowned Arab souks, intoxicated by the vibrant sights of colourful carpets and trinkets, and smells of fragrant spices, and even experience one of the greatest civilisations ever known, Egypt of the Pharaohs.
Kenya and Tanzania on Africa's eastern coasts combine beautifully with Indian Ocean cruises, but they also offer the chance to get upclose to wildlife - either on exciting shore excursions or as part of pre- or post-cruise land programmes. Zanzibar, a stunning island just off the coast of mainland Tanzania, is renowned for its spices, giving it the moniker 'Spice Island'.
Straddling both the Atlantic and Indian Oceans, South Africa offers a number of exciting cruise destinations, not least Port Elizabeth - from where you can enjoy exhilarating game drives at nearby game reserves - or Richards Bay, gateway to Zululand, where you'll be greeted by tribal dancers as you step off the ship. Cape Town, of course, offers a dazzling array of sights, experiences, and activities, and is often the starting or ending point for many cruise itineraries, making it the perfect opportunity to explore the great wine estates of South Africa's winelands, the stunning Garden Route, and much more besides, or even combine with a trip aboard the luxurious Rovos Rail, taking you perhaps up to the iconic and staggering Victoria Falls. It really is an ideal port for further exploration, tailoring your pre- or post-cruise programme to your interests. World cruises will often include calls at Namibia's Walvis Bay and others along the Atlantic coastline.
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