Port Thessaloniki (Greece) is expected to close season 2022 with 60 cruise ship calls, in comparison with just 6 calls back in 2019 - a 10-fold increase, according to Hellenic Ports Association's (ELIME) official data.
Speaking during an event of the ThPA S.A. (Thessaloniki Port Authority) on Friday, September 9, Greek Tourism Minister Vassilis Kikilias said the increase in cruise ship arrivals to Thessaloniki in 2022 followed a series of port upgrades.
Kikilias added that half of the ship calls were homeporting, which added even more value to the destination.
During ThPA’s event was also unveiled that Thessaloniki will host the 2023 PSTF-Posidonia Sea Tourism Forum - a premier cruising and yachting conference organized by Posidonia Exhibitions.
Posidonia Exhibitions decided to relocate PSTF's 7th edition to Thessaloniki as the city was emerging as a major homeport in the Eastern Mediterranean/Balkan regions, following investments and seaport and airport infrastructure upgrades.
This will be the first time the biennial event is moving away from Athens (Piraeus) since its inception 11 years ago.
Thessaloniki is home to the main gateway port to Southeast Europe and the Balkans, which is strategically situated near the major Trans-European motorway/railway networks.
ThPA is now implementing a multi-million investment plan that is aiming to contribute to turning Thessaloniki into major commerce, tourism, logistics, and transportation hub for Southeastern Europe. Ongoing investments include the project for expansion of Pier 6, which is due to provide the ability to directly serve container ships, and the upgrading of the existing cruise ship terminal.
The 7th PSTF-Posidonia Sea Tourism Forum will take place at Thessaloniki’s Makedonia Palace Hotel (April 25-26) and is expected to attract decision-makers in the sea tourism sector and international cruising.