Cruise ship with over 8OO tourists docks at port of Mombasa

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By Tobby Otum

Plans are at an advanced stage to enhance cruise ship tourism with the port of Mombasa being an integral part.

Tourism Cabinet Secretary Penina Malonza said plans are already underway to further enhance the cruise ship tourism experience.

She added they will also continue to improve facilities and services including diversification of excursions that they will be marketing to cruise ship passengers on expeditions in the destination.

“The over 800 tourists on board who have made Magical Kenya part of their cruise itinerary will have an opportunity to experience the new experiences, products and attractions that will  make Kenya a world class tourism destination,” she pointed out.

Malonza said her ministry will be actively engaging with relevant stakeholders, among them the Ministry of Transport and operators, to ensure that the cruise industry benefits from the presence of relevant infrastructure at the Kenyan coast.

She made the remarks during the reception ceremony of cruise ship MV Nautica along berth number one at port of Mombasa in Mombasa county.

The CS said that with of the arrival of the cruise ship, over Ksh 100 million will be injected into the economy through tourism activities including visits to different attractions as well as accommodation.

Malonza insisted the government will also continue to develop and implement tourism policies that will improve the experience of tourists visiting the country, and specifically at the Coast region.

She pointed out in line with this, the Government has already put in place infrastructure projects on the upgrade of the Moi International Airport in Mombasa and Diani Airport in Kwale county, as well as road infrastructure to support tourism.

“It is worth noting that the Port of Mombasa has been a critical part of Kenya’s maritime history and economic success story. We are therefore pleased to see it return to its glory days as an important maritime port in East Africa,” she added.

Kenya Ports Authority [KPA] general manager marine operation Godfrey Namadoa reiterated they have invested a lot on construction of the cruise facility at the port of mombasa.

He added the authority is currently enjoying the fruits of putting up cruise terminal with the arrival of the cruise ship vessel at the facility.

“The arrival of the cruise ship is clear testimony the government marketing strategic is working out properly,” he pointed out.    

On his part, the  cruise  ship captain Sasa  Nilosavljevic told  journalists this was  his  first time to set his foot in the country’s soil and lauded the reception they were accorded.

He  said  tourism hospitality industry required a smile to promote the sector  globally.

“My team is amazed with the warm reception they were accorded on arrival,” he pointed out.