Five at once highlight Kiel Cruise Season
by Ulf Jahnke
More than 25,000 ferry and cruise guests expected
Kiel, August 10th 2018: Five cruise ships at once are expected to provide the highlight of Kiel’s cruise shipping season on Saturday August 11th. That’s when all five ships visit the Schleswig-Holstein state capital’s port at the same time – in addition to the regular big Baltic ferries of Color Line, Stena Line and the DFDS. Along with the “AIDAaura” and the “AIDAluna”, the “MSC Preziosa”, the “Costa Pacifica” and the “Astor” will all arrive in the morning. Inside just a few hours, more than 25,000 passengers will board or leave ships at the port’s different terminal facilities. Dr Dirk Claus, Managing Director of the PORT OF KIEL (SEEHAFEN KIEL GmbH & Co. KG) commented: “We are well prepared and are looking forward to welcoming both passengers and ships. Along with all our partners, from agencies to customs, we can guarantee smooth processing.” Drawing particular attention on Saturday is the “MSC Preziosa” – the 139,000 GT cruise ship which has so far been the biggest handled in the Ostuferhafen. The total tonnage of all the ferry and cruise ships expected in Kiel on Saturday is more than half a million GT.
If all goes according to plan, the “AIDAaura”, the “AIDAluna” and “Costa Pacifica” will be the first to arrive in Kiel on the day. They will pass Kiel’s outer lighthouse at around 0630 and tie up at the Ostseekai and the Sartorikai at about 0800. Their passengers are ending Baltic or Nordic cruises in Kiel. A little later the “MSC Preciosa” will arrive in the Ostuferhafen from Bergen and she will be followed by the “Astor”, which will tie up at the Norwegenkai. “The processing of five cruise ships all at the same time is unique this season”, said Dirk Claus. “These ships and their passengers are of particular touristic and economic significance for both Kiel and the region”, he added. In the evening and once all the passengers are on board, provisions loaded and luggage stowed, the ships will be able to begin their new cruises. After the departure of the “Costa Pacifica”, the other cruise ships will leave in quick succession around 1800. The “AIDAluna” will sail for the coast of Norway while the “MSC Preziosa” and the “Astor” head for the Danish capital of Copenhagen. The destination of the “AIDAaura” is the British Isles where her first stop will be Newcastle. “The departure of the big ships is invariably an eye catcher”, said Dirk Claus, “and it attracts a lot of interested visitors to the Kiel Fiord. A trip to the port is always worthwhile”, he declared. The last ship to leave Kiel on Saturday, at about 2100, will be the DFDS ferry bound for Klaipeda in Lithuania.
The SEEHAFEN KIEL GmbH & Co. KG operates Kiel’s commercial port on behalf of the capital of the federal state of Schleswig-Holstein, of which it is a 100% subsidiary. Kiel has two berths available for very big cruise ships at the Ostseekai in immediate proximity to the city centre.Smaller ships can be accommodated at the Norwegenkai and the Sartorikai. Ships which are more than 300 metres in length and carry up to 4,000 passengers can be handled at the cruise ship Berth 1 at the Ostuferhafen. During this year’s season, 32 different cruise ships are schedule to visit Kiel a total of 165 times. For the first time ever, more than 600,000 cruise ship passengers are expected.
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