190 INTERVIEW Escape and explore Vijay Daryanani shares with Laura Hyde some of the attractions that make Gibraltar a must-visit destination for every cruise passenger “ The compact nature of Gibraltar makes it an incredibly convenient destination to visit” Located at the southern tip of the Iberian Peninsula with Africa just 24 kilometres away, Gibraltar boasts a captivating blend of history and natural beauty, as well as an array of distinctive attractions and a wellequipped port. Together, these factors make this British Overseas Territory a popular cruise destination. Some of the highlights for cruise guests include being able to try paddleboarding or hoverboarding and also visit Gibraltar’s five beaches to enjoy the rare opportunity to swim in both the Mediterranean Sea and the Atlantic Ocean on the same day. Visitors can also explore 35 shipwrecks, some intentionally submerged, which have been part of Gibraltar’s artificial reef project since the 1980s. This includes the 482, a Royal Navy cable laying barge which sits upright in a sand flat and is Gibraltar’s most visited dive site. Alternatively, wildlife lovers can take a dolphin-watching safari in the territory’s bays and strait area, which are populated by three species of the mammals. They can also head to the nature reserve to see the wild Macaques, which have lived on the island since the early days of the British garrison. Cruise guests who are interested in history can explore the 18th-century Great Siege Tunnels, the World War II tunnels that stretch for approximately 55 kilometres and tell the story of the island’s strategic wartime importance.