2011 will be a record-breaking cruise season for Saaremaa harbour, the youngest member among the five harbours operated by Port of Tallinn. Saaremaa harbour - only opened only in 2006 - is expecting 13 cruise ship calls and more than 8,000 cruise passengers in the coming season.

According to the CEO of Port of Tallinn, Mr Ain Kaljurand this is a great example of co-operation between the Port, local communities and travel agencies. "Saaremaa is a new and relatively unknown destination in the Baltic Sea and we must all combine our efforts in promoting it to global cruise consumers," said Kaljurand. During the first five operating years there have been 26 cruise ship visits, which brought to the island more than 11,000 cruise tourists.

Saaremaa as a destination is a completely different and complementary destination to Tallinn, giving a wonderful, contrasting impression of Estonia to cruise tourists, who are

interested in unique destinations, which are not that frequently visited." Saaremaa is the largest of the 1,500 islands in Estonia and located right next to the cruise ship fairway, with beautiful, natural resources, tranquility, a rich historical heritage and particularly friendly and hospitable people.

On May 17 the new cruise season will have been ceremonially opened in Saaremaa harbour when the cruise ship Balmoral calls and in fact, during 2011 will visit Saaremaa four times. Additionally Saaremaa will host cruise ship visits by Boudicca, Spirit of Adventure, Costa Marina, Deutshland, Vistamar, SeaDream I and Kristina Katarina