Brand-new 82-night ‘Discovering Asia with the Holi Festival’ Grand Voyage with Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines

Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines has today unveiled a brand new 82-night Grand Voyage, offering the chance to discover the culture-rich lands of Asia on a journey timed specially to coincide with the Holi Festival.

The sailing, aboard Fred. Olsen’s smaller-sized Balmoral, features calls into Myanmar and Cambodia, known for their ancient civilisations and rich histories, where guests can explore the temples of Angkor Wat from Siem Reap, the largest religious monument in the world, and Myanmar’s ancient city of Bagan.

Wildlife lovers will have the chance to spot endemic species in Borneo, home to proboscis monkeys, or visit Sri Lanka’s Udawalawa Elephant Park, while those with a passion for wartime history can discover the Củ Chi tunnels, an extensive network of underground tunnels, in a call into Vietnam’s Ho Chi Minh City.

An undoubted highlight will be time spent in India, where Chennai will act as the gateway to the ancient monuments and temples of Mahabalipuram, created by the Pallava dynasty, while time in Mumbai will allow those joining the cruise to experience the annual Hindu Holi Festival or immerse themselves in the local way of life by assisting busy dabbawallas delivering lunches across the city.

What is more, in addition to the host of experiences on-board and ashore, guests who book to join this Grand Voyage can enjoy up to £500 per person to spend aboard Balmoral, plus free door-to-door transfers within 250 UK mainland miles to the port.

Martin Lister, Head of Itinerary Planning and Destination Experience at Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines, said:

“This Grand Voyage has been curated especially with guests enthusiastic about cultural travel in mind. Those joining us aboard Balmoral can discover more about many fascinating ancient civilisations, with chances to visit many impressive religious buildings, monuments and places of worship.

“Those looking to seek out native wildlife will have the opportunity to seek encounters with endemic and migratory species, such as birds, monkeys and dramatic displays of illuminated fireflies, with Borneo a particular highlight.

“Of course, a real pinnacle will be our call into Mumbai, timed specially to coincide with the traditional Hindu festival of Holi, where guests can experience the bonfires of Holika Dahan followed by the joyous throwing of Gulal.”                                         

Full details of the new Grand Voyage are as follows:

Balmoral’s 82-night L2502 ‘Discovering Asia with the Holi Festival’ cruise, departing from Southampton on 18th January 2025. Prices start from £8,999 per person. Enjoy up to £500 per person to spend on board, or free door-to-door transfers within 250 UK mainland miles to the port.

Itinerary: Southampton, England – Gibraltar, Gibraltar – Cruising Grand Harbour, Valletta – Valletta, Malta – Alexandria, Egypt (overnight stay) – Cruising Suez Canal – Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt – Safaga, Egypt – Jeddah, Saudi Arabia – Colombo, Sri Lanka – Hambantota, Sri Lanka – Port Klang (for Kuala Lumpur), Malaysia – Kota Kinabalu, Borneo – Muara, Brunei Darussalam – Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam – Sihanoukville, Cambodia – Singapore, Singapore – Yangon, Myanmar (overnight stay) – Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India – Kochi, Kerala, India – Mumbai, India (overnight stay) – Muscat, Oman – Salalah, Oman – Aqaba, Jordan – Cruising Suez Canal – Asdod, Israel – Haifa, Israel – Heraklion, Crete – Catania, Sicily, Italy – Cartagena, Spain – Lisbon, Portugal – Cruising by Cristo Rei and Abril 25 Bridge – Cruising by Belém Tower & Discovery Monument, Lisbon, Portugal – Southampton, England

For more details:

The Grand Voyage follows the early release of Fred. Olsen’s 106-night T2502 ‘A Voyage of Exploration Around the World’ cruise last week, and comes ahead of the launch of the cruise line’s entire 2024/25 programme in mid-March.

For further information on Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines’ new Grand Voyage, visit Book online, call Reservations on 0800 0355 242 (Monday to Friday 8.30am to 6pm, Saturday 9am to 5pm), or contact your ABTA travel agent.


Trying to explore each and every inch of this wonderful planet via cruise ship.

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Posted in Cruise News, Fred Olsen Cruise Lines

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