Cairns Plans Navigational Upgrades to Accommodate Bigger Ships


Bigger cruise ships will be able to dock at the Port of Cairns by 2031 as the shipping channel that serves as the entrance to the Australian port will be deepened and widened to accommodate cruise ships up to 300 meters in length.

“It is expected the $127 million project will accommodate forecast demand for 150 cruise ships through the Port of Cairns annually by 2031,” said Ports North Manager Operations, Richard Stevenson.

Australia’s fourth-largest cruise port by volume is expecting 47 calls this coming season. Maiden visits include the Ocean Dream, Coral Adventurer, Seven Seas Explorer and Wind Spirit.

Along with the channel expansion project, the port authority is upgrading wharves at its cruise terminal to accommodate larger ships. Plans include new jetties as well as new mooring structures.

“Wharf reservations are usually received from the cruise company’s nominated shipping agent and we provide immediate confirmation of availability. We currently hold confirmed bookings out to 2023 and happily accept bookings out to any time frame,” said Stevenson.

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