Earlier, the line announced it would resume cruising May 29 with Celestyal Crystal.
Celestyal's expanded deployment closely follows the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's advice that vaccinated Americans may travel internationally 'at low risk to themselves.' The line noted more than seven new or reinstated direct flights will operate between the US and Athens starting in early June.
'Legendary Archipelago' itinerary
The new seven-night 'Legendary Archipelago' cruise from Lavrion, 16 miles from the Athens Airport, will operate from June 28 through Aug. 30. On Aug. 30, Celestyal Olympia will undertake its scheduled three- and four-night 'Iconic Aegean' and 'Iconic Discovery' itineraries from Lavrion for the remainder of the season.
The 'Legendary Archipelago' itinerary includes Thessaloniki, Mykonos, Santorini, Agios Nikolaos (Crete) and Rhodes in Greece and Limassol in Cyprus with all-inclusive pricing starting at $1,019 per person.
Celestyal is the only cruise line calling at Thessaloniki on a regular basis. The second largest city in Greece, Thessaloniki offers paleo Christian and Byzantine monuments, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, monuments to the famed Alexander the Great, and the chance to explore rich Roman and Sephardic Jewish heritage.
Health safety requirements
Starting May 15, Greecr will allow travelers with proof of COVID-19 vaccination or certified immunity or presenting a negative PCR test taken within 72 hours of departure from home.
Celestyal Cruises will also require a negative PCR test within 72 hours before embarkation. The company is awaiting guidance from health authorities about the possibility of waiving this requirement for those who have been vaccinated.
Vaccinated travelers must still present a negative COVID-19 test before they board a return flight to the US and should get tested three to five days after returning from international travel. Celestyal said it will have PCR tests available on board for those who require it, at their cost, prior to disembarkation.
The line is working with the Greek health authorities to implement a vaccination program to ensure the crew on both vessels are fully vaccinated prior to sailing.