Bumper cruise sea­son nets $54m

Sunday Territorian - - NEWS - HAY­LEY SORENSEN

DAR­WIN’S cruise ship sea­son came to an end yes­ter­day with the fi­nal pas­sen­gers pass­ing through the port aboard Ocea­nia Cruise’s In­signia lux­ury cruise ves­sel.

The ship is two thirds of the way through its 180-day round the world voyage.

Tourism NT mar­ket devel­op­ment man­ager Richard Schoonraad said In­signia’s de­par­ture yes­ter­day sig­nalled the end of the Ter­ri­tory’s big­gest ever cruise sea­son. About 56,000 peo­ple have trav­elled to Dar­win aboard cruise ships this sea­son, a sig­nif­i­cant in­crease on pre­vi­ous years.

Mr Schoonraad said the cruise sec­tor was worth $54 mil­lion to the Ter­ri­tory econ­omy.

He said Dar­win was usu­ally the first Aus­tralian port of call for cruise lin­ers.

“This would have been the first taste of Aus­tralia for most of those pas­sen­gers,” he said.

“The top three things Dar- win of­fers them are na­ture, wildlife and the laid-back life­style.”

In­signia pas­sen­gers took ad­van­tage of the day off the ship with sev­eral bus­loads trav­el­ling to Litch­field Na­tional Park while some checked out the jump­ing croc­o­diles at Ade­laide River.

Oth­ers vis­ited at­trac­tions around Dar­win city.

Al­though the of­fi­cial cruise sea­son is now closed, two more cruise ships will dock in Dar­win this fi­nan­cial year.

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