It's much harder to have an adventure these days. Oh sure Christopher Columbus was a great explorer way back in the fifteenth century, but could he have an epic voyage these days when GPS can get you to a McDonalds pretty much anywhere in the world?
However, there is still some oceanic adventure out there: Holland America Line is offering a 35-Night African Explorer Cruise for Two (from $4,398, a low by $201; ends October 9). Admittedly this adventure is unlikely to feature lions or elephants, but you can look forward to exotic languages, unfamiliar terrain, and weird and wonderful food. Depart on November 15 from Cape Town, South Africa, and cruise up through Namibia and Angola. From there, it's on to Cape Verde, Spain, and Portugal, before finally arriving triumphantly in the land of clogs and tulips. Here are some of the destinations on this cruise to whet your appetite.
Cruise from Africa to Rotterdam
Departs from Cape Town, South Africa
Board the ms Amsterdam in Cape Town, where you'll have two days in port to explore the city before setting sail. Take the cable car up Table Mountain, shop in the V&A waterfront, and don't forget to sample some of the local wine.
Namibia's Skeleton Coast
Stopping in both Luderitz and Walvis Bay, you'll discover that Namibia is half African, half Bavarian, with tribal dancing and oompah bands. Walvis Bay is famous for its wildlife, especially Humpback whales and plankton-eating flamingoes.
Riches in Angola
The coastal capital city of Luanda has spent three consecutive years at the top of Mercer's list of most expensive cities in the world for expatriates. This is mostly due to its oil, but the good news is that the city now boasts world class chefs who combine their skill with fresh and abundant seafood to provide diners with a culinary treat. Go local and try a dish like Mufete (pictured).
Cross the Equator
Perform your own little Crossing of the Line ceremony as you cruise from one hemisphere to another and feel the satisfaction of marking off a truly remarkable achievement from your bucket list.
Get Tropical in Cape Verde
Your cruise will dock at the capital city of Praia on the island of Santiago as well as the smaller northern city of Mindelo on São Vicente island. Wander the European-style streets in the capital before retiring to the soft white beaches to soak up the sun, sand, and sea.
Spain and the Canary Islands
Tenerife is a great place to uncage your party animal after several nights at sea. Take the edge off with a Barraquito coffee, a local speciality (pictured). Next it's on to the island destinations of Las Palmas and Arrecife, where it's all about the beach. Later in your cruise you'll also stop at the historic cities of Cadiz and Vigo in southwest Spain.
Rock the Casbah in Morocco
Explore the Berber markets in Agadir and sip sweet mint tea from a silver kettle in Casablanca. Then stick on Rock the Casbah by the Clash and explore Tangier's thirteenth-century Kasbah Mosque.
Step off the ship and into Lisbon, Portugal's capital city, the oldest city in Western Europe and indeed one of the oldest in the world. This city has seen it all, from Romans to Moors to Crusaders to Napoleon. There is so much to do and see, but we absolutely insist you take tram 28 up to Amalfa for spectacular views over this "global city."
Oh Behave England!
As the cruise winds down you have a brief stop in London, long enough to run across the London Bridge telling everyone to behave in your naughtiest British accent.
Final Destination: Rotterdam, Holland
As this epic 35-night cruise winds comes to a conclusion you disembark in the fitting town of Rotterdam, Holland. We say fitting because it was seventeenth-century Dutch merchants who were the first Europeans to stop at the Cape of Good Hope (now Cape Town) and founded a trading post that is now one of the biggest metropolises in Africa.
Don't have a couple of months to give over to swanning around the west coast of Africa on a boat? Take a look at our other cruise deals; we've got adventures of all shapes and sizes.
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