Falmouth Harbour has just celebrated a record cruise season. The 44 visits – up from 29 in 2022 – saw 11 of the largest ships at anchor in Falmouth Bay and the Carrick Roads while a further 33 cruise ships called alongside, berthing at A&P Falmouth’s dock facilities near the centre of town.
The 216m cruise ship Ambition, operated by Ambassador Cruise Line, made four visits to Falmouth during 2023 incorporating passenger turnarounds for the first time – giving Cornish residents the opportunity to join a cruise from their home port without a long drive or flight. Ambassador are looking to continue this offering into 2024 with several cruises from Falmouth UK and other European destinations.
Falmouth Harbour CEO, Miles Carden, said: “The popularity of cruise is growing and this year has proven that Falmouth Harbour can accommodate a full range of cruise ships, working closely with Cruise Britain and port partners including A&P Falmouth and with our outstanding Pilotage provision ensuring vessels can berth or anchor safely and on time.
“We want these ships and their passengers to have the very best experience here and to come back. The value to Falmouth and Cornwall is immense: with an estimated per passenger spend of £70, this season alone could be worth in the region of £4-6 million.”
With the visits to Falmouth Harbour beginning in early April and continuing until the end of October, this cruise traffic has provided a welcome boost to tourism and with many of the calls taking place outside the traditional holiday period the additional footfall has been especially valuable to local businesses.
September was the busiest month with 11 cruise calls in total including a last-minute visit from the 131m luxury cruise ship, Le Champlain, operated by the French line Ponant.