The MSC Splendida recently kicked off its first cruise season in South Africa.
After inaugurating the new Nelson Mandela Cruise Terminal in Durban, the MSC Cruises vessel sailed on its first voyage from the country on Nov. 23, 2023.
Debuting in the region, the 133,500-ton vessel also became the largest ever to serve the local market in South Africa.
The MSC Splendida is set to offer a series of two- to 12-night cruises departing from Durban and Cape Town through early April.
The program features varied itineraries in South Africa, Mozambique and Namibia, such as Pomene, Portuguese Island and Walvis Bay.
In December, the 2009-built ship is also scheduled to offer a unique 12-night cruise to Mauritius and Réunion.
Celebrating the New Year, the voyage sails roundtrip from Durban and features a visit to Saint-Denis, in addition to an overnight stay in Port Louis.
Upon completing the deployment in Africa, the MSC Splendida is scheduled to return to Europe via a 27-night repositioning cruise to the Mediterranean.
Sailing from Cape Town to Genoa, in Italy, the one-way cruise also features visits to destinations in Mauritius, Cyprus, Italy and Greece, in addition to a full transit of the Suez Canal.
During the 2024 summer, the Splendida is scheduled to offer a series of nine-night cruises in the Eastern Mediterranean.
Joining the MSC Bellissima in the region, the 3,300-guest vessel then heads to Asia for a winter program in China.
Replacing its sister ship, the 2008-built MSC Fantasia is scheduled to debut in South Africa for the 2024-2025 season.
Part of MSC Cruises’ four-ship Fantasia Class, the MSC Splendida was built at the Chantiers de l’Atlantique shipyard in France.
Among its main features is the MSC Yacht Club suite enclave, as well as a selection of dining venues and entertainment spaces.