Mein Schiff 3 Becomes First Ship Back in Dominica

Mein Schiff 3 in Dominica

Dominica recently welcomed its first cruise ship since Hurricane Maria hit the island as the Mein Schiff 3 called on Jan. 28 with more than 2,000 passengers visiting the island, according to a statement.

Passengers from the ship engaged in shore excursions to Dominica’s famous Emerald Pool, Trafalgar Twin Falls, Bois Cotlette Estate and Titou Gorge. Some participated in whale watching tours and experienced the island’s unique therapeutic black sand at Mero Beach.

Dominica also said it welcomed a delegation from Carnival Cruise Lines last week. In a prepared statement, Discover Dominica said the delegation met with local tour operators to assess various sites and attractions for future tour offerings.

Discover Dominica also announced that all natural sites on the island managed by the Division of Forestry, with the exception of the Boiling Lake, Waitukubuli National Trail and Soufrière Sulphur Springs, are now open to visitors. Park wardens are there to attend to guests. Trail beds have been cleared, debris has been removed and information centres are back in operation. These beautiful and distinctive sites reflect the Nature Island’s resilience and the country’s boundless natural beauty.

Trafalgar Falls has received a great deal of attention since Hurricane Maria as well. The Visitor Reception facility has a new roof and work on the interpretation signage continues. The trail bed has been cleared of debris and restored, while the viewing platform has been replaced.

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MSC Cruises Donates School in Rebuilding Caribbean

Virgin Gorda, British Virgin IslandsPHOTO: The semi-permanent school will serve the island of Virgin Gorda in the British Virgin Islands. (photo via Flickr/kansas photo)
MSC Cruises continues to assist in the rebuild of the Caribbean following September’s devastating hurricanes.

The Swiss-based cruise line announced Thursday that it has joined forces with government officials in the British Virgin Islands to donate a new 4,000 square-foot, the pre-fabricated building that will function as a semi-permanent school on the island of Virgin Gorda.

All 15 of the territory’s schools were destroyed in the recent hurricanes.

“It is our responsibility as a family-owned company in the seafaring business for more than 300 years, to come to the aid of our family, friends and neighbours in dire times,” said MSC Cruises USA chairman, Richard Sasso in a statement. “This donation is one of many ways we are working to set the industry standard to help those who need it most and we’re proud to utilize our global resources to assist as the Caribbean works to recover and rebuild.”

The donation represents just one example of MSC Cruises’ ongoing effort to restore the British Virgin Islands and the surrounding Caribbean as a whole.

“With most cruise ports in the Caribbean region now open for business, MSC Cruises, along with other players in the cruise industry, are working to support local governments in their efforts to restore normality and rebuild the damaged infrastructures on the islands impacted,” the cruise line stated on its website.

With the help of its global network of partners, MSC Cruises has already helped ship food, water, medical supplies and building materials to the British Virgin Islands as well as hard-hit places in Puerto Rico, St. Maarten and Dominica.

The cruise line recently provided shipping services to bring emergency lighting to Puerto Rico.

Another aspect of the global cruise’s effort to assist the islands is by ultimately returning to the coveted destinations.

Travelers seeking a holiday sailing to the Caribbean with MSC Cruises this December can have their pick of the MSC Divina or the brand new MSC Seaside.

Click here to learn more about some of the ways MSC Cruises is aiding in the Caribbean’s recovery.

P&O Cruises’ Britannia to make St Lucia debut in 2016

P&O Britannia

P&O Cruises’ newest ship, Britannia, is to sail from St Lucia for the first time as part of its winter 2016-17 deployment in the Caribbean.

An expanded fly-cruise programme of new seven-night cruises alongside traditional 14-night winter sun itineraries went on sale yesterday (Thursday).

Britannia will run a total of 28 Caribbean cruises from St Lucia or Barbados during its second winter season in the region.

The ships will depart from the new Caribbean port for the first time on November 12, 2016 on a seven-night itinerary with calls into Dominica, Antigua, St Maarten and Barbados.

The line described St Lucia as a “must-see” Caribbean destination for its passengers.

Marketing director, Christopher Edgington, said: “Introducing new itineraries which all depart or return St Lucia will offer a new dimension to our Caribbean cruises.

“St Lucia is a popular destination with passengers and no other cruise line has it as a home port, so we are looking to make the most of this by offering an exciting range of shore excursions to maximise the time there.

“It is also the first time we have offered a seven-night Caribbean cruise option. These new week-long itineraries will appeal to those wishing to escape the cold weather and see a number of destinations but who don’t have the time for a longer cruise.

“For passengers with more leisure time, our 14-night cruises provide the perfect opportunity to see more than seven islands in one holiday.”

Prices for seven-night Caribbean fly-cruises start at £1,099 per person for an inside cabin and a 14-nights from £1,299, including return flights from Gatwick.