With cruising appealing to a younger and more adventurous passenger than ever before a cruise ship’s choice of shore excursions are becoming increasingly important.
Each Costa Cruises shore excursion has been carefully researched, designed and graded to ensure all tastes and abilities are catered for.
Europe’s number one cruise line even offers personalised excursions, which allow guests to put together their own itineraries and choose their own means of transport for a fully independent trip.
Marco Rosa, Costa Cruises Managing Director in the UK, selects five of Costa’s most popular trips:
Cairo, Pyramids of Giza and Lunch on the Nile - Egypt
Head to Cairo, Africa’s largest city, via stops at the Citadel of Saladin and the Alabaster Mosque of Mohamed Ali. Admire the exquisite interiors of the Mosque and enjoy a panoramic view of Old Cairo’s skyline. Drive downtown to the banks of the River Nile for a luxurious cruise followed by a visit to the Giza Plateau where the only remaining Wonder of the Ancient World, The Great Pyramids of Giza, are found. Continue down the valley to visit the guardian of this complex, the mysterious Sphinx and then watch the ancient art of paper making.
4 x 4 Dune Dinner Safari - Dubai
This trip offers the opportunity to get to know the desert in the space of just a few hours. Guests will experience the thrill of driving across golden sand dunes in the comfort of 4-WD vehicles before relaxing in a peaceful Arabian camp. Located in the heart of the desert, this calming haven has been specially decorated to create an authentic local atmosphere and it is here that guests will be able to indulge in a sumptuous feast of Arabian cuisine. Next, they can enjoy a hookah (shisha) under the stars while watching an exotic belly dancer performance. Guests can also have the opportunity to enjoy a camel ride or ski across the desert sand, and on a clear day admire the sunset from the camp. This will certainly be an evening to remember.
Volcano Hiking in Santorini - Greece
Admire the dramatic black rocks and the contrasting white pumice while sailing along volcanic shores to Nea Kameni. After disembarking the caique, or local boat, hike up to the crater of the still active volcano and observe the lava fragments and rock formations. Once at the top, relax and take in the stunning view of Santorini Island and the amazing cliff of Caldera. Descend the volcano and sail towards the thermal springs of Palea Kameni before returning to the ship.
Journey to the Mekong Delta - Vietnam
The tour will begin with a drive through the bustling streets of Ho Chi Minh City, thronged with people and vehicles. On arrival at My Tho City, guests will board a local boat and take a 30-minute cruise along the Mekong River to Tan Thach Commune, where they will be able to watch the locals make the regional speciality of ‘coconut candy’. The exploration will continue with a cruise aboard a motor sampan along the Tan Thach Canal to one of the well-known bee farms of the area, where guests can taste fresh honey tea and local tropical fruits. Finally, the tour will return to the mainland for lunch before travelling back to Ho Chi Minh City.
St Petersburg, Yussupov Palace and Canal Cruise - Russia
This tour follows beautiful canals to opulent palaces that sparkle with gilded spires, cathedrals with colourful domes and picturesque gardens teeming with flowers. Among the places guests visit are the Winter Palace Hermitage, the Neva River, the Cathedral of the Resurrection and the Peter-Paul Fortress, St Petersburg’s highest building where political prisoners were detained before the October Revolution. It contains the tombs of the Romanov family and other icons from the 18th century.
After a typical Russian lunch, the tour continues with a short drive to Yussupov Palace, one of the most beautiful buildings in St. Petersburg. From here, guests will return to the city on a scenic canal boat cruise.
Shore excursions can be pre-ordered online seven days before the ship’s departure from the primary port of cruise. This may differ from the passengers’ boarding port.