Norwegian-flagged Viking Sky, the first cruise ship of 2023 in Turkiye,has docked in the Aegean province of Aydın’s Kuşadası district.
While some of the tourists disembarked from the ship docking at Ege Port, some took part in tours and visited historical sites such as the Ancient City of Ephesus and the House of the Virgin Mary.
“We are excited to host the first cruise ship of the season. In 2023, we expect serious growth, especially in Kuşadası Port,” said Aziz Güngör, the general manager of the port and East Med Ports Regional Director at Global Ports Holding.
The number of passengers is expected to exceed 1 million this year, unless there are significant setbacks, which will be the highest number of passengers in the history of Kuşadası, he suggested.
Kuşadası was the main destination for cruise ships in 2022. In the first 11 months of last year, Kuşadası received 455 cruise ships and 488,000 visitors.
A total of 975 cruise ships visited Turkiye’s ports between January-November last year, according to data from the Transportation Ministry.
Istanbul ranked second at 117 ships and 248,000 passengers, followed by the coastal town of Bodrum at 98 ships and 96,000 visitors.
Those cruise liners brought around 997,000 holidaymakers.