Fri, 04/21/2023 - 13:31

On Saturday, April 22, with the arrival of the MS Hamburg, operated by Plantours Cruises, this year's cruise season in the port of Riga will be launched. The vessel started the Baltic Sea cruise on April 20 in Hamburg and will also call Gdansk, Klaipeda Tallinn, Helsinki, Mariehamn, Stockholm, Visby, Bornholm, Copenhagen, finishing the cruise on April 30 in the port of Kiel. It is interesting to know that last year's cruise season in the port of Riga also opened with the reception of the same MS Hamburg. “Since last season was very successful for the port with a record number of cruise ship calls - 99, and welcoming the 10 millionth passenger, it might be considered a good sign, and we expect an equally successful season this year as well, “said the Freeport of Riga CEO Ansis Zeltiņš.

The 2023 cruise season in the Port of Riga promises to be quite diverse and busy. 63 cruise ship calls are expected this season. However, it is less than last year, because due to the geopolitical situation, many US cruise companies do not include the eastern ports of the Baltic Sea in their routes. At the same time, the number of passengers on inbound cruise ships is projected to be higher this season compared to last season, as the cruise tourism industry continues to recover from the effects of the pandemic.

During the season, 22 ships of different cruise lines will call Riga, including vessels of two cruise lines that have not been in Riga so far - Ambassador Cruise from Great Britain and Vantage Travel from the USA. Six cruise ships will visit the Port of Riga for the first time, and according to tradition, the welcome ceremony will take place. During the season, 14 calls, which will last two days with the ship staying in the port overnight, are scheduled, providing a greater contribution to the tourism and hospitality industry of Riga.

The largest cruise ships expected in Riga this year are the 299 m long Nieuw Statendam of the US Holland America Line, which will visit Riga for the first time, as well as Costa Fascinosa of Italian cruise line Costa Crociere, which has a gross tonnage of 113,321 GT and the capacity of 3800 passengers. The 2023 cruise season is scheduled to finish on September 28 with a visit of the MS Rotterdam.

MS Hamburg, the first ship of this season, is a small cruise ship - with length of 144 m, a gross tonnage of 15, 067 GT, and a maximum capacity of passengers of 420. There are 6 decks and 197 passenger cabins on board. Just like other Plantours Cruises vessels, Hamburg boasts excellent passenger service and a client-oriented approach both before and during the cruise. Since the main service language on board is German, most of the passengers are from Germany, Austria and Switzerland.

Plantours Cruises might be considered as a line of the niche cruise segment, which is characterized by developing unusual routes and calls to various ports. Similar niche cruise companies are one of the target segments of the cruise attraction strategy pursued by the Port of Riga.

Information for media

Liene Ozola
  • liene.ozola [at], +371 670 308 53
  • Freeport of Riga Authority
  • 12 Kalpaka blvd, Riga, Latvia, LV-1010