Indonesia is committed to accommodating large as well as small ships, according to a spokesperson, who said that dredging is underway in three ports so that by year’s end Benoa, Surabaya and Semarang will be to able to accommodate Voyager-class ships alongside, in addition to Jakarta. These destinations also have the infrastructure to serve the passengers, he added.

Despite the development of Asian cruise markets, Indonesia benefits most from the Australian market – both for cruise and land tourism. An estimated 700,000 Australians will visit Bali this year and many opt for short cruises.

In addition, the island nation is popular among Dutch passengers as it was formerly a Dutch colony. Last year, Holland America Line sailed the Rotterdam with 1,200 passengers in Indonesia, calling at eight ports: Jakarta, Semarang, Surabaya, Probolinggo, Benoa, Lombok, Komodo and Makassar.

Some 25 destinations in Indonesia’s nearly 18,000 islands have the cruise and tourism infrastructure to handle ships up to 700 passengers, the spokesperson said.

Benoa (Bali) is also getting more turn-around traffic from cruise lines such as Seabourn, Regent, Silversea, Orion, Noble Caledonia and Crystal Cruises.

For 2012, Indonesia posted 214 calls and 113,081 passengers, up slightly from 2011. The forecast for 2013 is for 308 calls and 134,147 passengers.