The Greater Victoria Harbour Authority (GVHA) announced it had welcomed more than 550,000 passengers and 212,000 crew from 224 ships to Ogden Point, Canada’s busiest cruise ship port of call, during the 2016 cruise season.
Royal Caribbean International’s Explorer of the Seas made 21 daytime calls to Ogden Point, making it the largest cruise ship as a regular call on an Alaskan route. The Explorer was the first Voyager-class cruise ship to make regular stops in Victoria, bringing an average of 3,626 visitors during each call.
“We are incredibly proud to have welcomed these visitors to Victoria throughout our 2016 season,” said Ian Robertson, CEO of the Greater Victoria Harbour Authority. “We’re anticipating an increase in ship calls for 2017, mostly as a result of repositioning cruises during the shoulder season. With these types of voyages, cruise lines may select any Canadian west coast port of call, and the fact that they are choosing Victoria signals to our team and our member agencies that we are a preferred destination for cruise lines and their guests.”
In 2017, GVHA is predicting more than 240 ship calls.
“Congratulations to the Greater Victoria Harbour Authority for a very busy cruise ship season,” added the Honourable Shirley Bond, Minister of Jobs, Tourism and Skills Training and Minister Responsible for Labour. “I was delighted to be on hand at the start of Victoria’s cruise ship season to welcome the Explorer of the Seas to Victoria in May. With an 11.5 per cent increase in international visits so far this year, the cruise ship sector is helping grow our tourism industry and keeping B.C.’s economy leading the way in Canada."
The 2016 season kicked off on April 3 and wrapped up on October 17.
In 2016, ships from Royal Caribbean International, Norwegian Cruise Lines, Princess Cruise Lines, Disney Cruise Lines, Holland America Line, Crystal Cruises, Celebrity Cruise Lines, Oceania Cruises, Carnival Cruise Line, Silversea Cruises, and Regent Seven Seas each made calls to Ogden Point.