The three last cruise ships still sailing with passengers will dock today – and one has had quite the odyssey.
The MSC Magnifica left Europe in January, and was in the other corner of the world when ports began to close.
With nowhere to go, the Swiss-owned ship started the long journey home. Its passengers, used to a new port every few days, last felt land six weeks ago.
On Monday those passengers will finally get off in Marseille, having last disembarked in Wellington.
When the Magnifica left Genoa, Italy, on 5 January, the world looked very different.
The “unknown pneumonia”, as it was called, did not have a name. No one had died, the World Health Organization said, and just 59 people were infected, all in Wuhan.
As it pulls into Marseille on Monday, the Magnifica will be one of three cruises still sailing with passengers, the Cruise Lines International Association says.
The other two are also due to disembark today: the Pacific Princess in Los Angeles, and the Costa Deliziosa in Barcelona (it will also drop off passengers in Genoa afterwards).
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