The Port of Thessaloniki has welcomed its first cruise ship for 2022, marking what is expected to be a dynamic year for the new cruise season in Greece’s second-largest city.
Viking Cruises’ Viking Sky, arrived in Thessaloniki on Saturday, the 5th of February, in what was the earliest ever start to a season at this port. According to Tourism Minister Vassilis Kikilias, it is part of the Greek Tourism Ministry’s plans to boost cruise activity throughout 2022 and to establish Thessaloniki as a main homeport in the region.
Viking Sky is currently on its 10 days, round-trip named “Greek Odyssey” which started from Piraeus, Athens is then headed to Volos, before arriving in Thessaloniki on the 5th and continues its journey to, Kusadasi in Tukey, Rhodes islands, Santorini island, Heraklion Crete, Nafplio before arriving back in Piraeus on the 12th of February.
Viking Cruises as well as Azamara Cruises, Celebrity Cruises, Celestyal Cruises, Croiseurope Cruises, Hapag Lloyd Cruises, Mano Cruises, Noble Caledonia, Norwegian Cruise Line, Oceania Cruises, and Silversea Cruises, have included Thessaloniki in their itineraries for 2022, recognising the ongoing commitment of ThPA S.A. for the continuous upgrading of the range and quality of its services, as well as the ties of trust it has developed with leading companies in the cruise industry.
ThPA S.A. already has 55 confirmed cruise arrivals, from 11 different companies and 15 different cruise ships for 2022. Moreover, 55% of the 2022 cruise arrivals will be homeporting arrivals, highlighting the Port of Thessaloniki as an international port of choice for beginning and/or finishing cruises, with the capability of embarkation and/or disembarkation for passengers.
“We, at ThPA S.A., are constantly upgrading the spectrum and quality of our services, building further relationships of mutual trust with cruise lines to promote and attract cruise vessels to the port in order to support the economy and society by increasing tourist traffic. Our goal is to promote the destinations, experiences (such as tradition, culture, gastronomy) and the various opportunities of the wider region. We create added value,” announced Mr. Athanasios Liagkos, Executive Chairman of the BoD of ThPA S.A.
Minister Kikilias also announced that the Tourism Ministry is working with airport manager Fraport Greece, the Thessaloniki Port Authority and an investor to provide check-in and luggage transport services for passengers arriving from Thessaloniki International Airport to embark on a cruise from the city or departing after a cruise.
“This is to give travellers more time and quality to those visiting Thessaloniki, Central Macedonia and throughout Northern Greece, as we’re allowing cruise passengers more time to spend in the city,” said Kikilias.