May 24, 2007, Miami, FL Ã¢â‚¬â€œ Solidifying its position as the leader in destination cruising, Oceania Cruises recently made its maiden call in Sarande, Albania. Regatta was the first major North American cruise ship to call in Sarande, affording guests a unique cultural opportunity. Albania, which is located at the southwestern end of the Adriatic Sea, has just recently become accessible to western tourists.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“Our guests are experienced travelers who appreciate AlbaniaÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s fascinating history and diverse cultures. We originally anticipated that our guestsÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ primary interest would be the UNESCO World Heritage site of Butrint, but many chose excursions that provided them with a glimpse into Albanian culture and offered opportunities to immerse themselves in the local color, Ã¢â‚¬Å“stated Bob Binder, President of Oceania Cruises.
Oceania Cruises plans two more calls in Sarande during 2007; guests sailing on InsigniaÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s September 3 and October 17 departures of the Path of the Phoenicians will have the opportunity to explore the region, including excursions to the ruins of Butrint, its Amphitheatre, Basilica, and the five-centuries-old settlement which has been excavated over the past fifty years. In 2008, Oceania Cruises plans eight calls in Sarande: NauticaÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s voyages departing on May 20, July 19, Sept 5 and 17, Oct 13 and 25, and InsigniaÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s August 20th voyage.
Guests on these voyages will also have the opportunity to visit Lekuresi Castle and Blue Eye, a natural deep-water lake with unusual coloring; the ancient city of Foenike, the church of Mesopotami, and the medieval village of Gjirokastra. Also, because of its proximity to Italy, shopping bargains abound on items such as Murano glass, marbled paper and Venetian masks.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“We look forward to our continuing relationship with Sarande, and the warm and endearing people of Albania who provided our guests with such tremendous hospitality,Ã¢â‚¬Â added Binder.
About Oceania Cruises
Oceania CruisesÃ‚Â® is the worldÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s only upper-premium cruise line. Oceania Cruises offers a unique combination of the finest cuisine at sea, luxurious accommodations, exceptional personalized service and extraordinary value. As the leader in destination cruising, Oceania Cruises sails to more than 180 ports in Europe, China and the Far East, Australia, New Zealand, South America, Central America and the Caribbean. Featuring three intimate and elegant mid-sized ships, Regatta, Insignia and Nautica, the line will introduce two new mid-size Oceania-Class ships to its award-winning fleet in 2010 and 2011. For additional information, to make a reservation, or to order a brochure, please contact your Travel Agent or Oceania Cruises at 800-531-5658. Visit us at OceaniaCruises.com.