RMS Queen Mary 2 berths in Cape Town once again

South Africa’s main port, Cape Town, has a long history of welcoming ships and passenger liners to its shores. On Tuesday, January 24, 2012, the Queen Mary 2 berthed at Duncan Dock in Cape Town Harbour, after a brief stop in Swakopmund, Namibia.

The RMS Queen Mary 2 is on its world cruise that commenced in Southampton on January 10. Its next port of call is Durban on January 28, from where the ship will head for Mauritius and across the Indian Ocean to circumnavigate Australia, before heading to Rabaul in Papua New Guinea en route to Japan.

The RMS Queen Mary 2 is one of the world’s biggest passenger liners, and literally a huge maritime resort, with a capacity for 1250 crew and 3000 passengers.

Globally, cruise liner tourism is a fast-growing niche in the tourism industry. In 2008, the City of Cape Town commissioned an analysis of cruise market trends and a strategy on this sector for Cape Town. It concluded that there were many long-term opportunities for Cape Town, and South Africa, to welcome increased levels of cruise tourism.

Increasing cruise tourism to Cape Town promises benefits to the city from the associated spending by cruise passengers and crew, and the spending on operations, goods and maintenance while the liner is in Cape Town Harbour.

The cruise liner industry is also considered to be sustainable tourism, with a significant role to play in the welfare and quality of life of those working in the field, as well as those involved in initial infrastructural developments and supply chains. According to the 2008 research, the prospects for this form of tourism in South Africa are excellent.

Grant Pascoe, Member of the Mayoral Committee for Tourism, Events and Marketing, says, “Cape Town would like to extend a warm welcome to the travellers and crew aboard the RMS Queen Mary 2. Cruise tourism is one of the niche areas that the City of Cape Town has identified as an area of mid to long-term growth. The cruise sector has the right credentials for developing environmentally and socially sustainable tourism and we are committed to working with all industry and government players to provide an easily accessible, welcoming and efficient port of entry to our city.”

Says Skye Grove, Communications Manager, Cape Town Tourism, “The global demand for tourist cruises has been growing at a very strong pace, accounting for robust annual growth of 8% over more than 20 years. In excess of 16-million people take annual cruise holidays internationally, stimulating tourism activities and economic growth in berthing ports and communities. A number of the passengers on the Queen Mary 2 will disembark at Cape Town and extend their stay in our city, joining thousands of international visitors here for the international peak tourism season during January and February.”

For further information, please contact Cape Town Tourism’s Communication Manager Skye Grove, skye@capetown.travel or see www.capetown.travel.

Released for Cape Town Tourism by Rabbit in a Hat Communications, Tammy White, +27 (0)21 448 9705, +27 (0)73 202 5041, tammy@rabbitinahat.co.za.

Download the image below. Caption: The QRMS Queen Mary 2 (left) berthed at Duncan Dock in Cape Town Harbour. Photo courtesy Skye Grove

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