Cruise companies recognise Portland as a top UK destination; it’s location on the south coast of England means that it is well placed for all manner of cruises, including Round Britain, English Channel and transit cruises between the Caribbean, Mediterranean and Northern Europe.
It is clear that 2013 will be an exhilarating time for the Port with 18 cruise calls due throughout the season. The Port is very excited about the prospect of welcoming back old friends as well as entertaining some new cruise visitors for the first time. Ian McQuade, Commercial Manager of Portland Port, said:
“2013 will be a busy and exciting time for Portland Port. Not only are we going to see return visits from Phoenix Reisen, Saga, Crystal Cruises, Oceania, Sea Cloud and Royal Caribbean Cruises, but we will also be welcoming inaugural calls from Hapag-Lloyd, Voyages of Discovery and Transocean. Number 1 German cruise line Aida Cruises will also be visiting Portland for the first time with 4 calls this year.”
As always there will be a warm welcome provided by the Portland Town Crier as the passengers arrive into the port. Guests calling on German ships are also welcomed by local German speaking volunteers to ensure that they can make the most from their visit. Once in Portland cruise guests have the option of going on one of the many planned excursion trips, whether it’s a visit to Stonehenge, Corfe Castle or Abbotsbury Swannery to name but a few. Alternatively they can explore Weymouth and Portland at their own leisure, using one of the courtesy shuttle buses provided by the port.
Ian McQuade said: “Many passengers like to explore the area with a tour guide, so they book an excursion on board ship. However some like to use their time in port to venture off by themselves, hence the reason why we provide them with courtesy shuttle buses.”
Every year, Portland Port likes to give passengers something to remember them by, so as the ship prepares to set sail, entertainment is provided in the form of local entertainers. The variety is exceptional, from the Weymouth Concert Brass Band, local music bands and choirs or the Portland Sea Cadets. Passengers are treated to some delightful music and marching along the quayside, and as a final goodbye, they are given a very loud salute from the canon of the Nothe Fort Artillery.
Ian added: “We are very much looking forward to 2013. The whole area has much to offer the cruise passenger, and cruise companies are ultimately recognising the port as an excellent location for many of their cruise itineraries. 2013 will be a fun and exciting time for the area and 2014 is already shaping up to be better still.”