The Luxury Norwegian Dawn, the longest cruise liner for this season, made its maiden visit to Mombasa’s port, bringing with it 2212 guests from at least 54 nationalities and 1113 crew members.
During the cruise’s stopover at the Mombasa port, Capt. William Ruto, the Managing Director (MD) of the Kenya Port Authority (KPA), expressed optimism about the commencement of the cruise tourism season. He highlighted the potential for better returns in the industry with the arrival of such vessels at the port.
The Managing Director highlighted that the Kenya Ports Authority has made significant investments in infrastructure, enabling the port to consistently provide efficient and reliable services. This, in turn, has enhanced the port’s appeal to vessels like the Norwegian Dawn.
“The kind of infrastructure we have in place as the Kenya Ports Authority is tailored towards supporting cruise tourism. We are up to the task in terms of aspects like security, and we assure both guests and staff that the port of Mombasa is safe,” said Ruto.
In his first call of the year, he urged visitors to explore Mombasa’s white sandy beaches and historical sites to boost the local tourism industry.
Mombasa County Executive Committee Member (CECM) overseeing tourism and trade, Mohamed Osman, commended the Kenya Tourism Board (KTB) and Kenya Ports Authority (KPA) for their symbiotic relationship, which has played a crucial role in the notable advancements within the tourism sector.
Osman emphasized that collaborative efforts among stakeholders are fundamental to success. As part of the Mombasa County Government, he affirmed their complete dedication to working towards realizing the outlined objectives in the tourism industry, considering it the backbone of the port city.
“As Mombasa County, our role is to build a conducive environment for tourism growth, working with all relevant stakeholders to make Mombasa the premier destination in the region,” said Osman.
Captain Asen Gyurov of the Norwegian Dawn expressed gratitude towards the management of the Kenya Ports Authority and praised the seamless reception the liner received during its inaugural visit.
Gyurov conveyed optimism about the potential transformation of the port into a turnaround port for vessels in the future, attributing this expectation to the port’s exceptional performance.