From Friday 16th to Sunday 18th, five cruise liners with more than 6,000 passengers arrived to the port of Koper in the following order: the first was Crystal Symphony on Friday, Viking Sea and Voyager on Saturday and Thomson Dream and Celebrity Constellation on Sunday. 295-metre long Celebrity Constellation, which has already called to the port four times this season, is the largest and with the highest capacity of them all. It can accommodate 2,185 passengers who are attended by 1,000 crew members. It is owned by Royal Caribbean which has already confirmed to call at port the following two seasons. Crystal Symphony and Voyager are expected at the port only once, while Viking Sea that will conclude this year’s season on 12th December, will be moored alongside the Passenger Terminal five times.
Just for curiosity, Viking Sea owned by Viking Cruises is a brand new luxurious cruise ship which provides the tourists (mainly from North America) a great deal of comfort. The ship built by Italian Trieste-based shipbuilders Fincantieri was launched on a maiden voyage this spring. Viking Cruises put Koper on the list of their destination for the first time this year and already confirmed next year’s calls. Viking Cruises is the largest global player in the segment of river cruises, and their ocean cruise division only began sailing their first vessel in 2015.
Thomson Dream has the largest number of calls at the port this season, a total of 11. Another Thomson Cruises’ ship visiting Koper is Thomson Celebration which brings to Koper the largest number of passengers, mainly from the UK. Their cruise ships are medium-sized with the capacity of 1,506 passengers. Thomson Cruises is part TUI, the largest German travelling and tourist company in the world. It was among the first cruise lines to visit Koper and the first to design itinerary cruises exclusively within the Adriatic. Dream’s home port is on the island of Corfu while Dubrovnik is the Celebration’s home port.
By the end of the cruising season which has entered its second part, another 27 cruise liners will call at port of Koper, the last one expected on 12th December. Based on the visits in the first part of the season, we may anticipate that this will be the second most successful year after 2005 when the Passenger Terminal started to operate in Luka Koper. The total number of passengers will amount to about 80,000 which is what we also anticipate for the next year. 2017 season will begin in March with a cruise ship by Viking Cruises. Very good news is that Koper is called by ever larger cruise liners and the increasing number of passengers and what is the most important is that these passengers are ranked in the high end tourism. The results of the satisfaction surveys among the passengers are above the average in the industry and the Mediterranean.