Golden Cities and Sands 1
Sir Bani Yas (Abu Dhabi), Dubai and Emirates
Grand Mosque of Muscat, Oman
You’ll have the chance to visit beautiful beaches and picturesque cities on this Asia Cruise. Traditional meets modernity as you make your way from glamorous Dubai to the ancient city of Petra. A tour like Golden Cities and Sands 1 is sure to open your eyes to all of Asia’s diversity.
* The order of the itinerary may differ depending on your chosen departure date and airport.
Day 1-3 – Port Rashid (for Dubai), Dubai and Emirates
Departs: 18:00 (Day 3)
The surreal, glamorous and exciting city of Dubai is one of the most iconic locations in the Arab world. After arriving at the airport you’ll take a 20-minute transfer to your ship, where you can rest up before exploring.
You can easily catch hop-on, hop-off buses from the port. Make sure you visit Burj Al Khalifa, the world’s tallest building, and Palm Jumeirah, a palm-tree shaped island studded with restaurants and beaches.
Be sure to take a shore excursion to explore Dubai at night, when the buildings are illuminated - you can even take a safari into the desert for a barbecue dinner under the stars.
Day 4 – Port Zayed (for Abu Dhabi), Dubai and Emirates
Time in port: 06:00 – 18:00
Abu Dhabi is the capital of the Emirates – a dynamic city where the ancient and modern collide. You’ll disembark at Port Zayed, where taxis and hop-on hop-off buses are waiting to take you to the city. Check out the Emirates Palace, one of the world’s most lavish buildings.
If you want to see more of Abu Dhabi, take a speedboat tour. To escape the sun’s heat, try a shore excursion to Ferrari World, the largest indoor theme park on the planet.
Day 5 – Sir Bani Yas (Abu Dhabi), Dubai and Emirates
Time in port: 08:00 – 17:00
In this port, you'll find a white-sand beach lapped by cobalt waves and lined with watersports centres and luxury restaurants. Welcome to the island of Sir Bani Yas, the only cruise beach stopover in the Arabian Gulf!
You’ll be taken right on to the beach of this beautiful island, where you can spend the day relaxing or explore what's on offer inland on a mountain bike. Or why not enjoy a 4x4 excursion?
Day 6 – Manama, Bahrain
Time in port: 08:00 – 16:00
Manama is an important business hub, with slick business districts and glass skyscrapers. But there are fascinating cultural attractions here too.
If you’re travelling independently, take a 45-minute shuttle bus to the Grand Mosque or the National Museum.
For something more unique, try tackling the world’s most challenging 4x4 circuit with the help of an expert driver.
Day 7 – Khasab, Oman
Time in port: 08:00 – 17:00
Khasab is a town of domed mosques and traditional souks, surrounded by rust-red mountains and fjords. This part of Oman is nicknamed ‘Norway of the North’ – take a traditional dhow cruise to experience it for yourself.
If you want to stay on dry land, the port is just a short walk from the town’s attractions, so you’ll be able to explore on foot easily.
Day 8 – Port Sultan Qaboos (for Muscat), Oman
Time in Port: 06:00 – 23:59
The next stop on your Golden Cities and Sands 1 itinerary is Port Sultan Qaboos, a 20-minute drive from the ancient walled city of Muscat. Take a guided excursion of the city’s Grand Palace, domed mosques and colourful souks (markets).
The port itself is just 20-minutes’ walk from the old district, Muttrah, which has an impressive souk and pretty waterfront boardwalk.
Day 9 – Khasab, Oman
Time in port: 00:01 – 10:30
The Golden Cities and Sands 1 cruise takes you back for a second chance to see Khasab. There won’t be time to head to town, but you can stretch your legs with a walk along the picturesque natural harbour.
You’ll spot fishermen preparing their catch, and have a spectacular view of the nearby mountains.
Day 10 – At Sea
After so many days of sightseeing, it’s time to relax on board Marella Discovery. With her large outdoor pool and lavish spa, she won’t disappoint.
Finish the day off with entertainment at Broadway Show Lounge, or catch one of the outdoor cinema screenings being held by the pool.
Day 11 – Salalah, Oman
Time in port: 07:00 –14:00
Salalah is surprising lush compared to Oman’s other desert cities, surrounded by forested mountains and stunning beaches. Take an excursion out of the city to experience it for yourself, and view the ancient towns and fishing villages.
If you want a taste of the high life, spend the day at Crown Plaza Resort, which boasts swimming pools, subtropical gardens and a private beach.
Day 12-14 – At Sea
With two days at sea, there’s plenty of time to discover what else Marella Discovery has to offer. Break a sweat on the outdoor climbing wall or the jogging track. If you're after something less active, enjoy a flutter at the casino or indulge your childish side at the video arcade.
There are seven dining spots to choose from, offering foods from around the world. And there are plenty of places for a quiet drink too, such as the swanky Bar Eleven.
Day 15 – Aqaba (for Petra) Jordan
The final stop on your Golden Sands and Cities 1 itinerary is Aqaba. It’s two hours from Petra, an ancient city hewn into pink sandstone cliffs - hence its nickname, the Rose Red City. You might have time to visit this extraordinary sight before taking a late flight home.