MSC Seaside Cruises Will Include ‘Private Beach Experience’

MSC Cruises announced today that passengers on MSC Seaside cruises this summer will be able to enjoy a private beach experience in Taranto, Puglia.

Taranto was recently announced as one of two brand new destinations on Seaside‘s itinerary in southern Italy, along with Siracusa in Sicily.

msc seaside
MSC Seaside (Photo courtesy of MSC Cruises)

MSC Seaside will spend the summer sailing in the Mediterranean, marking the first time the ship will sail in the region — she debuted in Miami, Florida in 2017. The vessel will join the line’s flagship, MSC Grandiosa, in the Mediterranean and begin operating cruises on May 1. Seaside‘s seven-night cruises will call at Genoa, Malta, Siracusa, Taranto, and Civitavecchia (Rome).

“As we continue to offer one of the safest ways to take a holiday, we knew that we needed to make sure that we delivered on all of the elements of a summer holiday and this meant finding a way to enable our guests to also spend a day at the beach,” said Gianni Onorato, CEO of MSC Cruises. “We have worked to privatize three lidos with all the facilities of a beach club so that our guests can enjoy this beautiful stretch of coast in Puglia, close to Taranto. With this, we have also established a blueprint for this type of experience, and we will now work to introduce more private beach experiences at other destinations this summer.”

Excursions in Taranto

Situated in the southern part of Italy in Puglia, Taranto will play host to a variety of excursions for passengers. Passengers will only be able to take excursions through MSC, to maintain a safe social bubble as part of MSC Cruises’ health and safety protocols.

Three beaches on the Marina di Taranto will be exclusively available for MSC Cruises guests on the day that the ship is in port, and transfers will be on hand to take guests between the ship and the beach. The beaches include umbrellas and lounge chairs, a bar and restaurant, bathrooms, showers, and changing rooms.

coastline taranto italy
The coastline in Taranto, Italy (Photo courtesy of the Port Authority of Taranto)

Health and safety measures at the beach will follow the same standards as onboard, and the transfers will be in a “bubble,” meaning cruises guests won’t be sharing transportation with local residents.

READ MORE: Costa To Sail Summer 2021 Mediterranean Cruises

Other MSC excursions in Taranto will include:

  • Taranto City Tour: Guests will discover the “city of the two seas,” founded by the Greek in the eighth century BC. Traces of the Greek colonization can still be seen today.
  • The “Sassi” in Matera: Visitors can see the city of the “Sassi” caves, and the first town in the world to be declared a UNESCO World Heritage site. The caves were inhabited from the Neolithic times right up until 1952.
  • Alberobello: Famous for its whitewashed trulli buildings, this town forms the top of the “heel” in the boot of Italy. Thanks to its round stone houses with conical roofs, known as “trulli,” Alberobello was added to the list of UNESCO World Heritage sites in 1996.
  • Lecce, the famous Baroque town: Travelers enjoy a visit to the place often referred to as “the Florence of the south,” the old Apulian town of Lecce.
  • Art and Flavors of Puglia: Grottaglie is the first destination in this discovery of Puglia’s art and traditions. Visitors enjoy a guided walk around the city center to the ceramic district to visit a ceramic workshop and admire the famous pottery that Grottaglie is known for.
  • Ostuni and its oil mill: “The white lady” stands on three hills in the area of Murge. It was an important Greek — Roman city in the first century AD. The medieval village with white houses and cobbled alleyways dominates the plains below. The tour includes a visit to a typical oil mill with an olive oil tasting session.

Siracusa, Sicily

MSC Seaside will also call at another new destination for the cruise line — Siracusa in Sicily. There, passengers can discover historical and archaeological sites in the area including the largest theater ever built in Sicily — the Greek theater of Siracusa. Travelers can also visit the countryside, baroque cities, and see Europe’s largest volcano, Mount Etna.

These MSC Seaside itineraries will be available to residents of Schengen countries as well as Bulgaria, Croatia, and Romania.

READ NEXT: Cruise Lines That Are Sailing in Summer 2021

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