This story was written by leading food and travel journalist Angela Youngman.
Leading cruise operator, Cruise & Maritime, has announced plans to commence ocean cruises from south Wales. Cardiff and Newport will be it Welsh bases. Chris Coates, CMV Commercial Director says, “CMV is committed to cruising from Wales.”
The company has set up a minimum three year plan, with the intention of offering more cruises during 2018 and 2019 from the Associated British Ports sites in Cardiff and Newport. 2017 will be the first time that Cruise & Maritime will have used Wales as one of its home ports.
During 2017, cruises will be offered on board the Magellen and the Marco Polo, two of the vessels within the Cruise & Maritime fleet. These are medium sized vessels catering for 1250 passengers in the Magellen and 800 in the Marco Polo.
The first cruise begins on 14 May when the Marco Polo sets sail on a 10 night Norwegian Fjordland Splendour cruise from Cardiff. This will be followed by a cruise to Spain and Portugal on 24 May which includes an overnight stay in Lisbon. Returning to Cardiff, the Marco Polo then takes passenger on Summertime Gardens & River Seine experience calling at the Isles of Scilly, the River Seine, Rouen and Antwerp returning to Hull with an included coach transfer provided back to Cardiff.
Passengers from Newport will be able to take advantage of a coach transfer to London Tilbury to join the Magellan for a Carry-On themed cruise on 20 May visiting some of the medieval cities of Europe. The ship will return to Newport. Some of the stars from the popular Carry On films will be on board.
On 4 June, Magellan sails from Newport for a two night cruise to Dublin with coach transfers from Dublin. Alternatively passengers can opt to stay with the vessel for a voyage to the Norwegian Fjords, returning to Newport via a Liverpool coach transfer.
The Welsh cruise programme looks set to be extremely popular with 60% of the available having been sold within two months of the brochure being launched.