AIDA starts new route from Dubai
Starting in November 2014, AIDAaura will set sail on a new 14-day Orient-India route. The voyage combines Oriental cities and millennia-old history, sheikdoms, and kingdoms with the exotic flair and vibrant color of India.
What’s special: Long stops at the ports offer guests plenty of time to explore the destinations, often even overnight as e.g. in Dubai, the cruise’s point of departure. The Arabian metropolis is just a short flight from Germany. Then guests head for faraway India by sea at a gentle pace.
Dubai, the city of superlative architecture, is like a Fata Morgana with dazzling boulevards and magnificent buildings, top hotels and dream beaches. At Jumeirah Beach, the water seems bluer and the sand whiter than anywhere else in the world. During the Dubai Shopping Festival, which takes place at the beginning of the year, the entire city transforms into a true shopping paradise – with theaters, film festivals, fashion shows, fireworks and lots of bargains. It’s hard to even keep up with all of the architectural megaprojects that are launched here. One of the most recent projects is “The World,” an artificial archipelago in the shape of a world map. Visitors can experience the days before the oil boom with a cruise on a dhow – a traditional Arabian wooden boat – on Dubai Creek. Too much for a couple of hours? AIDAaura doesn’t depart until afternoon on the following day – so guests have a whole day and a whole night to explore the mysteries of this city.
After two relaxed days at sea, AIDAaura reaches Mumbai on the west coast of India. This city of millions offers innumerable colorful photo opportunities, such as the open air laundromat Dhobi Ghat or Crawford Market with its exotic fruit and spices. AIDAaura stays overnight here as well and departs the next evening. After a peaceful day on the ocean, the ship heads for Mangalore. The city derives its name from the Hindu guardian deity Mangaladevi. A temple was devoted to her here. Indian temples are considered not only the homes of the deities but also as places of special wisdom. The Manjunatha Temple is famous for its wonderful bronze statues. In the Thousand Pillar Temple, richly ornate stone pillars tell of the past. Those who would like to experience calmness should visit the Bahubali Temple. There, the monolith of Gomateshwara presides with a meditative smile. The next destination is Mormugao / Goa. Miles of palm-lined beaches invite visitors to relax.
After two rejuvenating days at sea, AIDAaura reaches the Arabian Peninsula again with Muscat. Impressive forts such as Nizwa Fort and Jabrin Castle, palm groves, sand deserts and majestic mountain ranges characterize the Sultanate of Oman with the capital Muscat. On an excursion to the “Wahiba Sands,” a region of sand dunes with an area of 15,000 km², the fascination of the desert can be experienced up close. The next day, guests head for the United Arab Emirates, to Abu Dhabi. There is everything in abundance here, including relaxation. During a stroll along the Corniche – Abu Dhabi’s magnificent promenade – the entire beauty and spaciousness of the city is revealed again. AIDAaura stays overnight in Abu Dhabi before the ship heads back to the departure point of the voyage in Dubai.
The Orient-India cruises are offered from November 19, 2014 to February 25, 2016. They can be booked starting from 999 euros per person, the Christmas and New Year’s Eve cruises starting from 1,199 euros. Reservations can be made through a travel agency, at www.aida.de, or by calling the AIDA Customer Center at +49 (0) 381/20 27 07 07. The arrival and departure package can be additionally booked starting at 720 euros per person.