The Namibian Ports Authority announced this week that come next week Tuesday, five passenger vessels are expected to berth in the port of Walvis Bay up to the end of the month.
The first ship, the AIDAaura is expected next Tuesday, 15 January, followed the next day by the MSC Musica, the Nautica and the Queen Elizabeth. This will be the first time ever that three passenger ships will berth alongside at the same time.
Wednesday this week, the AIDAaura was docked in Port Elizabeth, South Africa, having arrived early in the morning en route from Durban. It sails again later in the day for Cape Town, before taking the stretch up the Atlantic coastline headed for Walvis Bay.
Namport acting Chief Executive, Elias Mwenyo, expressed his delight at the prospect of 7000 thick-wallet tourists arriving in Walvis Bay, saying "'The Port of Walvis Bay looks forward to hosting the cruise liners due for arrival next week. We have geared up our security and transport resources during this time to ensure a smooth flow of movement for 7,000 passengers moving in and out of the port. The town of Walvis Bay has an opportunity to show case the beauty of our natural assets and hospitality. The town will be abuzz for a few days as the local tourism and other commercial sectors will benefit from our international visitors."
Mwenyo said a dedicated passenger liner jetty is under construction as part of the authority's infrastructure development projects. The jetty is expected to be completed before the end of the year.
This facility will position the country as a recognised port of call for passenger ships, a development which is anticipated to boost the tourism industry in the Erongo Region.
Caption: The luxury passenger ship, the AIDAaura, currently on a cruise around the southern tip of the continent, arrives in Walvis Bay on Tuesday 15 January where its 1266 passengers will spend the day in the harbour town and surrounds.