Northern Europe from Hamburg

Europe-Polar Regions
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What's included

Outside from: $2929*
Balcony from: $3429*
Inside from: $2609*
*Indicative pricing only.
Please view the important notice.

Itinerary

  • Day 1 - Hamburg Located between the North Sea and the Baltic Sea, Hamburg will fascinate you from the moment you first set eyes on its elegant and austere buildings looking onto the port, one of the largest in Europe. When you reach this destination on an MSC Cruise of Northern Europe, you can get a taste of its glorious history. Hamburg is a cosmopolitan, wealthy and fashionable city, with an aggressive economy, that still prides itself of the title “free Hanseatic city”. It has, in fact, never cut its umbilical cord with maritime trade that has its heart in the port where your cruise liner will be waiting for you. Many tourist come here to visit the Reeperbahn, the red light district, but if you want to take in the atmosphere of the city, you shouldn’t miss an excursion to Speicherstadt (Warehouse Town), where the cobbled streets, gables and turrets combine to make the area on the other side of Zollkanal (Tax Canal) a world apart from the city opposite. Another city icon, St Michaelis, at the western edge of the city centre by Ludwig-Erhard-Strasse, is Hamburg’s iconic church and no wonder. More than any other building, the “Michael” mirrors the city’s irrepressible spirit. Burned down after a lightning strike in1750, it was rebuilt in Baroque style under Ernst Georg Sonnin but it again accidently caught fire in1906. In 1945, the Allies obliterated the roof and decor of church number three. Reconstructed again to Sonnin’s plans, it is now the finest Baroque church in North Germany. Probably the most gratifying attraction during an excursion on an MSC Cruise is the scenery you can admire from one of the best views over Hamburg: the 360-degree panorama takes in Speicherstadt, the container port and shipping on the Elbe, the Alster lakes, and the five spires of the churches and Rathaus.
  • Day 2 - At Sea
  • Day 3 - Invergordon When you step ashore from your MSC cruise in Invergordon, you’ll be enthralled by the Scotland’s Northwest Highland region, which covers the northern two-thirds of the country and holds much of the mainland’s most spectacular scenery. You may be surprised at just how remote much of it still is: the vast peat bogs in the north, for example, are among the most extensive and unspoilt wilderness areas in Europe, while a handful of the west coast’s isolated crofting villages can still be reached only by boat. The only major city, Inverness, is best used as a springboard for more remote areas where you can soak in the Highlands’ classic combination of mountains, glens, lochs and rivers, surrounded on three sides by a magnificently pitted and rugged coastline. Inverness Castle is closed to the public, but the Inverness Museum and Art Gallery offers an insight into the social history of the Highlands, with treasures from the times of the Picts and Vikings. A shore excursion on your MSC Northern Europe cruise can also be the opportunity to discover Loch Ness. Twenty-three miles long, unfathomably deep, cold and often moody, Loch Ness is bounded by rugged heather-clad mountains rising steeply from a wooded shoreline with attractive glens opening up on either side. Its fame, however, is based overwhelmingly on its legendary inhabitant Nessie, the “Loch Ness monster”, who ensures a steady flow of hopeful visitors to the settlements dotted along the loch, in particular Drumnadrochit. The first mention of a mystery creature crops up in St Adamnan’s seventh-century biography of St Columba, who allegedly calmed an aquatic animal that had attacked one of his monks. Nearby, the impressive ruins of Castle Urquhart – a favourite monster-spotting location – perch atop a rock on the lochside.
  • Day 4 - At Sea
  • Day 5 - Reykjavik Reykjavík is mirrored in the waters of its bay, as you can see when your cruise ship sets anchor in the port. The quays along the seafront host a variety of shops, live music clubs and cafés. Take a stroll down Frakkastigur up to Lækjartorg, to admire the Sólfar, also known as the Sun Voyager, a large modern steelsculpture by Jón Gunnar Árnason, that represents a Viking vessel, with the bow pointing towards the north. Go back in history as you reach the historic centre, in the districts of Aðalstræti and Suðurgata, where you can still see the remains of some primitive Icelandic dwellings. Also the church of Hallgrímur, probably the most important architectural monument in Reykjavik, is worth a visit. As you will discover during your MSC cruise of Northern Europe, geothermal energy positively conditions the life of the entire country and there is an abundance of spas. Don’t miss an excursion to the Þingvellir national park, in the south west region of the island, a UNESCO world heritage site since 2004. On the northern shores of the Þingvallavatn, the largest Icelandic lake, the Öxará river forms the Öxaráfoss waterfall in the vicinity of Almannagjá, the largest cleft in this land. If you like waterfalls, you should not miss a visit to Gullfoss, in the south east of the island: the river Hvítá here drops down 11 and then 21 metres forming the queen of all Icelandic waterfalls and then continues along a narrow gorge in the plateau. In this area we also find the Strokkur, the only geyser that regularly erupts every 4-8 minutes. Then proceed to Geysir, in the Haukadalur valley, the oldest known geyser, from which the term originates. Its eruptions spray boiling water up to 60 metres into the air, but often reach higher than 100 metres: it is the tallest of the active geysers.
  • Day 6 - Reykjavik Reykjavík is mirrored in the waters of its bay, as you can see when your cruise ship sets anchor in the port. The quays along the seafront host a variety of shops, live music clubs and cafés. Take a stroll down Frakkastigur up to Lækjartorg, to admire the Sólfar, also known as the Sun Voyager, a large modern steelsculpture by Jón Gunnar Árnason, that represents a Viking vessel, with the bow pointing towards the north. Go back in history as you reach the historic centre, in the districts of Aðalstræti and Suðurgata, where you can still see the remains of some primitive Icelandic dwellings. Also the church of Hallgrímur, probably the most important architectural monument in Reykjavik, is worth a visit. As you will discover during your MSC cruise of Northern Europe, geothermal energy positively conditions the life of the entire country and there is an abundance of spas. Don’t miss an excursion to the Þingvellir national park, in the south west region of the island, a UNESCO world heritage site since 2004. On the northern shores of the Þingvallavatn, the largest Icelandic lake, the Öxará river forms the Öxaráfoss waterfall in the vicinity of Almannagjá, the largest cleft in this land. If you like waterfalls, you should not miss a visit to Gullfoss, in the south east of the island: the river Hvítá here drops down 11 and then 21 metres forming the queen of all Icelandic waterfalls and then continues along a narrow gorge in the plateau. In this area we also find the Strokkur, the only geyser that regularly erupts every 4-8 minutes. Then proceed to Geysir, in the Haukadalur valley, the oldest known geyser, from which the term originates. Its eruptions spray boiling water up to 60 metres into the air, but often reach higher than 100 metres: it is the tallest of the active geysers.
  • Day 7 - Isafjordur When your MSC cruise to northern Europe takes you to the north western point of Iceland, you will cast anchor at Isafjordur, a small town of ancient origins. In Isafjordur you will find the oldest standing Icelandic house, built in 1743. In the periphery of Bolungarvík, the northernmost location in the western fjords, one can instead visit Ósvör, once a fisherman’s village and now an open air museum. The past re-emerges also in the old town of Nedstikaupstadur, where Icelandic and Norwegian merchants first, and then British and German ones, would meet in the mid-15th century in the bay of Isafiord. Here, in the second half of the 18th century, Krambud (the shop) was built, that was converted in the 20th century into a private home; as well as Faktorshus (the farmers house); Tjoruhus (the tar house) and Turnhus (the tower house) used as warehouses and fish processing centres. While on your MSC cruise to Northern Europe, if you want to get an idea of how Icelanders used to live in the past, try an excursion to Vigur, literally the “spear-shaped island”. Its waters host a great deal of sea lions who feed on marine birds such as the puffin, the black guillemot, the aggressive arctic tern (who can attack people if it feels threatened) and the common eider. Another spectacle of nature is the Naustahvilft, the “troll’s seat”, a large depression shaped like a half moon in the flat mountains that surround the Isafjordur fjord. Legend has it that it was created by a troll caught by the sunlight sitting on the mountain with its feet in the water. Whether you believe in the legend or more likely in a valley dug out by the ice during the last ice age, try this brief but intense excursion, it is certainly worth it.
  • Day 8 - Akureyri When you set ashore from your cruise ship for a vacation in Akureyri, you should take an excursion to Lake Myvatn. To get there you will pass through Eyjafjördur, where you can enjoy a splendid view of the city port. The first worthy stopover is in Godafoss, here the waters if the Skjálfandafljót form a 12 meter tall waterfall. According to the legend, in the year 999 or 1000, one of the Icelandic rulers proclaimed Christianity as the official religion of Iceland and hurled the idols of the Nordic gods (Odin, Thor and Freyr, to which probably the waterfall was previously dedicated) in its waters. A stained glass window of the church of Akureyri (Akureyrarkirkja) depicts this legend. As you continue along the Icelandic wild nature, with its incredible variety of colours, varying from the bright green meadows to the red minerals erupting from the depths of the island, one reaches the pseudo-craters of Skutustaðir, generated by underground vapours produced by an eruption 2500 years ago. From here one can reach Dimmuborgir, an incredible labyrinth of lava, where amidst peculiar formations rises the Kirkjan, a natural church with two pointed-arch portals and, inside, real chapels with altars. You can end your visit at the Viti crater, known also as the Inferno, one of the many mouths of the central Krafla volcano. If you feel like tackling the steep climb from its internal lake, you can also enjoy a relaxing hot bath. Here you will also find the Askja, an immense caldera that extends for 50 sq.km., a desert of lava and the finest sand resembling moon dust: this in fact was where the astronauts of the Apollo 11 trained for their lunar landing. Before returning to Akureyri, if you feel curious, you can stop to visit Santa Clause’shouse, about ten kilometres south, a delightful Christmas toy shop, with the largest Advent calendar in the world.
  • Day 9 - At Sea
  • Day 10 - Kirkwall Sail on an MSC cruise to the unique and fiercely independent archipelago of Orkney! For an Orcadian, the Mainland means the largest island in Orkney rather than the rest of Scotland, and their history is inextricably linked with Scandinavia. Kirkwall, Orkney’s capital, has one great redeeming feature – its sandstone cathedral, without doubt the finest medieval building in the north of Scotland. Nowadays, the town is divided into two main focal points: the old harbour, at the north end of the town, where inter-island ferries come and go all year round, and the flagstoned main street, which changes its name four times as it twists its way south from the harbour past the cathedral. Standing at the very heart of Kirkwall, St Magnus Cathedral is the town’s most compelling sight. This beautiful red sandstone building was begun in 1137 by the Viking Earl Rognvald, who built the cathedral in honour of his uncle Magnus, killed on the orders of his cousin Håkon in 1117. To the south of the cathedral are the ruined remains of the Bishop’s Palace, residence of the Bishop of Orkney since the twelfth century. Most of what you see now, however, dates from the time of Bishop Robert Reid, sixteenth-century founder of Edinburgh University. A narrow spiral staircase takes you to the top for a good view over the cathedral and Kirkwall’s rooftops. MSC Northern Europe cruises also offer excursions to the heart of Orkney’s most important Neolithic ceremonial complex. The most visible part is the Stones of Stenness, originally a circle of twelve rock slabs, now just four, the tallest of which is more than 16ft high and remarkable for its incredible thinness.
  • Day 11 - At Sea
  • Day 12 - Hamburg Located between the North Sea and the Baltic Sea, Hamburg will fascinate you from the moment you first set eyes on its elegant and austere buildings looking onto the port, one of the largest in Europe. When you reach this destination on an MSC Cruise of Northern Europe, you can get a taste of its glorious history. Hamburg is a cosmopolitan, wealthy and fashionable city, with an aggressive economy, that still prides itself of the title “free Hanseatic city”. It has, in fact, never cut its umbilical cord with maritime trade that has its heart in the port where your cruise liner will be waiting for you. Many tourist come here to visit the Reeperbahn, the red light district, but if you want to take in the atmosphere of the city, you shouldn’t miss an excursion to Speicherstadt (Warehouse Town), where the cobbled streets, gables and turrets combine to make the area on the other side of Zollkanal (Tax Canal) a world apart from the city opposite. Another city icon, St Michaelis, at the western edge of the city centre by Ludwig-Erhard-Strasse, is Hamburg’s iconic church and no wonder. More than any other building, the “Michael” mirrors the city’s irrepressible spirit. Burned down after a lightning strike in1750, it was rebuilt in Baroque style under Ernst Georg Sonnin but it again accidently caught fire in1906. In 1945, the Allies obliterated the roof and decor of church number three. Reconstructed again to Sonnin’s plans, it is now the finest Baroque church in North Germany. Probably the most gratifying attraction during an excursion on an MSC Cruise is the scenery you can admire from one of the best views over Hamburg: the 360-degree panorama takes in Speicherstadt, the container port and shipping on the Elbe, the Alster lakes, and the five spires of the churches and Rathaus.
** Itinerary may vary by sailing date.

Onboard experience

Combining spacious, elegant interiors with the variety for which our Musica Class is renowned, MSC Orchestra promises your dream cruise. Because life aboard can be just what you want it to be. If relaxation is your goal, there is ample deck space to unwind in the sun on board MSC Orchestra. Alternatively, why not pay a visit to the heavenly MSC Aurea Spa with pampering Turkish baths, saunas and a whole range of soothing massages. Active types can amuse themselves in the Sports Centre with state-of-the art gym, 5 swimming pools and even a jogging track that allows you to take in the fresh sea air and stunning ocean views. MSC Orchestra also takes you on an exciting culinary journey, ranging from the Shanghai Chinese Restaurant with authentic dim sum specialties to the Four Seasons gourmet Italian dining experience and La Piazzetta, where you can taste the finest pizza outside Naples. Whether dancing to live music in the leopard-style Savannah Bar, tempting lady luck in the Palm Beach Casino or catching a spectacular show in the Covent Garden Theatre the entertainment on board will keep you amused all night. Children can go wild in the Jungle Adventure playroom while teens get their own Teen’s Club. Whatever your age you can guarantee you’ll have the holiday of a lifetime on board MSC Orchestra.

Facilities

Recreational: Card Room, Outdoor Pool, Library, Table Tennis, Childrens Play Room, Shuffle Board, Water Slide, Kids Pool, Mini-golf course, Golf Simulator, Nightclub
Food and Drink: Poolside Bar, Lounge Bar, A la carte restaurant, Cafe, Bar, Four Seasons Restaurant, Sushi Bar, Lounge, Italian Restaurant, Chinese Restaurant
Fitness: Tennis Court, Football, Gym, Tennis, Yoga, Jogging Track, Volleyball, Basketball, Fitness Center
Other: Art Gallery, Kids & Teen Shopping, Photo Gallery, Security Safe, Shore Excursion Office, Photo Shop, Duty-free shop
Entertainment: Disco, Karaoke, Children's Club, Children's Play Area, Photo Gallery, Cigar Club Room, Theatre, Show Lounges
Relaxation: Sauna, Massage, Spa, Jacuzzi, Hot Tubs, Swimming Pool

Deck layout

Arpa Deck
Chitarra Deck
Clarinetto Deck
Flauto Deck
Lira Deck
Mondolino Deck
Pianoforte Deck
Saxofono Deck
Sport Deck
Viola Deck
Violino Deck
Violoncello Deck
Xilofono Deck

Important Notice

The above information has been obtained from the relevant suppliers and should be considered an indicative guide only as to the prices that may be available for these products. Flight Centre cannot guarantee that any particular product will still be available at the following prices, or for your exact dates of travel. At the time of making your booking, prices may differ to that price displayed on this website. Please contact a Flight Centre travel consultant to obtain the latest up to date information regarding applicable prices, fees and charges, taxes, availability, any blackout dates (such as school holidays), seasonal surcharges and other terms and conditions which may apply.

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