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Norwegian cruise ship arrives with 1,600 visitors in Boracay

MANILA, Philippines — Malay-Boracay Tourism Office on Friday welcomed Norwegian cruise ship MV Norwegian Jewel that is carrying an estimated 1,600 passengers.

“An estimated 1,600 passengers of MV NORWEGIAN JEWEL finally arrived in Boracay Island. Welcome to Boracay Island!” the tourism office wrote at 10 a.m.

Norwegian Cruise Line earlier announced that MV Norwegian Jewel is the first NCL fleet to return to Asia in more than three years.

In a radio report, Niven Maquirang, executive assistant 5, officer-in-charge of the Port Cruise Ship Operation and Special Project, said that the passengers are comprised of Norwegian and Asian passengers.

Around 80% of them are expected to alight the cruise ship and tour around one of the country’s top tourist destinations, Boracay.

MV Norwegian, currently on a 12-day cruise from Keelung, Taipei City, Taiwan to Singapore, came from Ilocos before making a stop in Boracay.

It will leave Boracay at 6 p.m. and head over to Manila.

The cruise ship started its journey on October 30 and will end the cruise by November 11.

Its arrival came a day after luxury cruise ship MS Silver Whisper, arrived in another tourist destination, Puerto Princesa, Palawan. The ship touted as the “cruise ship for the rich and famous” brought in 382 tourists and a crew of around 300.

Palawan City Tourism Department said MV Norwegian Jewel, which will also arrive in Puerto Princesa in December, is expected to bring in an estimated 2,500 visitors.

"This November won't just see the MS Silver Whisper; five more vessels are scheduled. And December will welcome the MV Norwegian Jewel and the MV Aida Bella. The influx will keep us on our toes, but it's a bustling pace we look forward to," Puerto Princesa CTD chief Demetrio Alvior Jr. was quoted by the Philippine News Agency as saying.

NCL said MV Norwegian Jewel offers 16 immersive, port-rich itineraries, visiting 11 countries and sailing from nine different departure ports, including Bangkok, Thailand ((Laem Chabang); Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia (Port Klang); Singapore; Taipei, Taiwan (Keelung); Bali, Indonesia (Benoa); Tokyo and Yokohama, Japan; and for the first time in its history Seoul, South Korea (Incheon).

The arrival of these cruise ships also came weeks after the Philippines won the Asia's Best Cruise Destination 2023 at the prestigious World Cruise Awards.

The Department of Tourism said this was the first time the Philippines clinched the recognition, cementing its reputation as "an emerging powerhouse in the global cruise and tourism sector."

As of October 16, DOT said there are 128 ports of call or cruise calls in 2023 across 33 destinations nationwide. These cruise ships are expected to bring in over 101,000 passengers and some estimated 50,000 crew.

Credit belongs to : www.philstar.com

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