Long-hidden Libya spices up Crystal’s 2011 Mediterranean cruise season

Long-hidden Libya spices up Crystal’s 2011 Mediterranean cruise season

Crystal Cruises is removing the cloak of mystery surrounding Libya as a travel destination by adding its historic capital, Tripoli, to its fall season.  Libya’s doors have been closed to American tourists since the U.S. imposed sanctions on the country almost 20 years ago.  With Libyan authorities lifting its ban on tourist visas, Crystal has added Tripoli to its November 16 “Italian Splendor” Mediterranean cruise. 

“Libya is enigmatic, exotic, and incredibly rich in history,” says Bill Smith, senior vice president, sales & marketing.  “Providing a rare glimpse into this Middle Eastern nation will add tremendous depth to travelers’ experiences of ancient corners of the world.  With over a thousand miles of Mediterranean coastline to the north, Egypt to the east, and central Africa to the south, Libya is truly a crossroads of cultures, past and present, which no world traveler should miss.” 

Augmenting an itinerary already steeped in wonders of antiquity and cultural immersion, the addition of Tripoli enables travelers to visit what some consider the last unspoiled country in North Africa.  Beginning and ending with overnights in Venice and Barcelona, the 11-day voyage also boasts visits to Dubrovnik and Sicily, Naples, Civitavecchia (for Rome), and Livorno (for Florence and Tuscany).

Guests can explore Libya’s largest city, Tripoli; see some of the best-preserved cities and archaeological relics in the world from Roman, Greek, Byzantine, Phoenician, and Arab-Islamic civilizations; mix with local and tribal ethnicities; feast on traditional cuisine; and sift through the sand of the Saharan desert, which covers roughly 90% of the country. 

With so many educational opportunities for all ages on this Thanksgiving cruise, families can create once-in-a-lifetime memories — and enjoy free berths, group perks and family savings via the “Crystal Family Memories Program.”

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