Cruise to Tunisia

By | Category: Travel destinations

It is unusual for cruise itineraries to include a destination which everyone knows but few have ever visited on a cruise ship in the last five years or so.

La Goulette. The shopping vallage at the port which has seen no cruise passengers for years

MSC Cruises have achieved that by announcing that, from April next year, it will dock at La Goulette.

For those unfamiliar with the name and I suspect that most of Just about Travel readers won’t know it, La Goulette  is a port just outside Tunis in what was previously one of the most popular holiday destinations for Britons – Tunisia.

Readers might remember that I visited the port three years ago, and prior to terrorist attacks, it used to see some 600,000 cruise passengers a year.

From the port passengers would be whisked away on coaches to see the heritage of Carthage, shopping in the Souk or the up-market shopping centres in Tunis, visiting the blue and white painted buildings in Sidi Bou Said high on the hill overlooking the capital city or any number of nearby attractions.

 MSC Cruises announced the addition of Tunisia and the port of La Goulette to its summer 2022 sailings in the Mediterranean. The ship will add to its current scheduled itinerary the port of La Goulette for a total of 27 calls from April to October 2022.

Back then I speculated that, given the long planning cycles in the cruise industry that it would be 2020 before cruise ships docked again. The pandemic ruined that forecast but the empty port will be bustling from next April when MSC Opera docks in La Goulette for the first of 27 visits during the year.

A while ago, up to six cruise ships a day would dock in the port; getting MSC to add Tunisia to its itinerary will have taken the port authority, the tourism and transport ministries some time to arrange.

Tunisia will be hoping that having persuaded one cruise line to come that others will follow.

Cruise passengers will welcome the fact that there is a different destination from the fairly standard ports of call that they have been used to visiting on Mediterranean cruises over the last five years.  

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