Indonesia’s popular tourism destination; Bali is seeing a brighter outlook on cruise tourism this year as the island’s main port, Benoa, is scheduled to welcome 60 cruise ships throughout the next 12 months.
Last year, Benoa welcomed 49 cruise ships, a slight increase from the 41 in 2013.
“We have seen a continuous increase in the number of cruise ship visits since 2009. This year, 60 cruise ships have confirmed they will call on the port,” Ali Sodikin, general manager of seaport operator Pelindo III for Benoa port said Monday.
The Sapphire Princess was the first ship to dock in Benoa this year, on Jan. 1, carrying some 2,600 visitors to the island. As of today, the port has welcomed five cruise vessels with a total of 7,000 passengers.
Benoa now serves as a turn-around port, where cruise ships can drop off passengers to vacation in Bali. While these passengers take other transportation modes to leave the island, the cruise ships pick up new passengers before leaving for the next destination.
It is also a destination port, where the cruise ships drop off and pick up the same passengers.
The port has two piers ― the eastern pier is 205-meters long and the southern pier 300 meters, as well as an upgraded international terminal. Further upgrades are planned this year, including lengthening the eastern pier to 250 meters.
The visits of 60 cruise ships to Benoa throughout this year will contribute more than 90,000 tourists to the island, since each vessel carries between 1,000 to 2,000 passengers. The ships usually stay in port for three days on average before heading to their next destination.
The majority of cruise passengers visiting Benoa are Australians, followed by tourists from the US, as well as European and Asian countries.
Source: Jakarta Post