Land of fragranced perfumes

The Bahai Gardens on Mount Carmel
The Carmelite Monastery of Stella Maris
Masada and the Dead Sea

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Where the three great monotheist religions meet

In the world, few lands are as enchanting, full of personality and rich in ancient history as Haifa, a city of picturesque nature and a breathtaking sea. Your MSC Cruise will dock just there.

On an MSC Mediterranean Cruise, you will open your senses to a land of intense citrus and pomegranate scents, spices and sea air. You will fall in love with the treasures of an-cient and magnificent cities, the warm colours of the desert with its starry nights and the fabulous dips of the Dead Sea, formerly Lake Asfaltide due to the exceptional density of salty waters.

An MSC Excursion will take you to Haifa, the third most populous city in Israel, where cul-tures, religions and diverse architectural styles transmit extraordinary energy. 
Snuggled between the hill and the sea, with lively boroughs and surrounded by long beaches, Haifa is famous for the Bahia Gardens located on Mount Carmel. Together with the Sanctuary of the Child, a pilgrimage destination, it is considered to be an important symbol of peace and part of the UNESCO Heritage.

With another MSC Excursion, you will visit Stella Maris Monastery located on the slopes of Mount Carmel, a sacred place initially developed during the Byzantine time but later modified by the Discalced Carmelite brotherhood. The church, with its beautifully fres-coed walls, is built on the cave where the prophet Elias once lived. From there, you can also enjoy a spectacular view of the city.

Another favourite place that can be reached with one of the MSC Excursions is Masada, King Herod's ancient mountaintop palace-fortress, placed 400 m above the Dead Sea with its impenetrable walls and forty towers, accessible only through the Masada Snake Path. You'll bathe into the waters of the Dead Sea, one of the seven wonders of the world. Amid the desert, fabulous ruins of the past and plenty of opportunities to relax, you'll have many memorable moments to treasure.

Must see places in Haifa

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    Welcome to the Holy Land
    Welcome to the Holy Land

    A vacation in Israel leaves a mark. There are so many interesting things to see in the Holy Land that every wish can be satisfied. Nature, history, tradition, religion, relaxing on the beach, skin-diving, trekking… there isn’t a single item on the “things to do on vacation” list that you won’t find here.

    In all its regions, from Galilee, in the south, known as the Switzerland of Israel, to Mount Hermon, in the north, and to the plain of Jezreel, the location of the biblical Apocalypse, you can find a host of opportunities. You can start with the towns associated with the life of Christ with a visit to the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem and then Nazareth, to the basilica of the Annunciation.

    Along its maze of little streets, to tackle at a slow pace, you find ancient churches of all periods, often rebuilt with the integration of Byzantine elements or dating back to the Crusades.
    Don’t miss an excursion to Acri, the town that was the seat of the Knights Templar and which still bears its mark.
    Or to Akko, where the waves of the Mediterranean sea break against the majestic ancient walls of the town.

    The more mundane, party-loving and lively city is instead Tel Aviv, the most modern of Israeli cities, active 24 hours a day. Don’t miss a visit to the desert of Judaea, a stony and arid land which opens onto the spectacular Dead Sea.