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Visby is a port town in Gotland County, located on Gotland Island (Sweden) with total area approx 13 km2 (5 ml2) and population around 25,000. Port Visby is managed by Malmo Port (Copenhagen Denmark).
Visby is a Hanseatic city and an UNESCO site (ranked Scandinavia's best-preserved medieval city). Among its major historical remains are the 3,4 km (2 ml) long town wall (encircling the town's center) and a number of church ruins.
Current summer holiday resort destination, Visby became famous as 'the town of roses and ruins'. It is a living relic of medieval heyday when the Hanseatic port was in fame and riches. Today, its ruined churches and narrow cobbled streets reside behind the 13th-century city wall. Popular tourist attractions include Saint Nicolai Monastery ruins, Fornsalen Museum (exhibiting Viking silver items), medieval cathedral. Visby is by far the most populated outside mainland Sweden. Visby's University of Gotland is since 2013 department of Uppsala University.
Oland and Gotland islands are off Sweden's southeastern coast. Visby is linked to mainland Sweden by air and sea. Ferries arrive from both Nynashamn (near Stockholm) and Oskarshamn (Smaland), with crossing time about 3 hours. All ferries are subsidized by the Swedish government and run by DESTINATION GOTLAND. Company's largest ships are the newbuildsMS Visborg (2018) and MS Thjelvar (2019). Since 2016 are also regularly scheduled ferries to Vastervik (during summer only) run by Gotlandsbaten (independent passenger shipping company).
In 2017, the port handled 59 ship calls with about 40,000 passengers. The new (expanded) Cruise Quay terminal was officially inaugurated on April 29, 2018 (during the call of AIDAdiva). The first ship docked here on April 16 (CMV Astoria). On July 25 here berthed Mein Schiff 3 (TUI).
In 2018, Port Visby had scheduled 90 cruise ship calls with estimated around 90,000 passengers. In 2019, cruise shipping traffic grew by ~30% - to 105 calls and 120,000 tourists. Season 2020’s berth bookings suggested ~10% increase. By 2023, the cruise port expects annual traffic of 130 ship calls and ~150,000 passengers.
Visby cruise terminal
Port Visby is accessible 24 hours. Its Inner Harbor has capacity to handle cruise liners with LOA length 200 m (656 ft) and max draft 7,5 m (25 ft). There is no restriction for vessels in port's anchorage area, from where passengers are transported (ferried) via tender boats to Cruise Quay (terminal).
Pilotage is available and compulsory for docking vessels with LOA length over 90 m / 295 ft), with a 5-hour notice being required. At the cruise berths are provided fresh water supply (capacity 40 m3 per hour), garbage collection (at fee), sludge, greywater and sewage collection (at fee). Port's main cruise ship docking facilities are:
- "Berth 4" (length 200 m / 656 ft) that serves vessels with max length 160 m (525 ft) and max draft: 6,5 m (21 ft).
- "Berth 7" (aka "Cruise Quay", length 200 m) is the port's main dock that serves vessels with max length 200 m (656 ft) and max draft 7,5 m (25 ft). Berth 7 also has a shore-based RoRo ramp (serving rolling cargo) with width of 32 m (105 ft).
- Berth 7 has a movable gangway (passenger bridge) with max length 68 m (223 ft) and max height 7 m (23 ft). There is also a covered line serving embarking / disembarking cruise passengers between the docked vessel and the passenger terminal building.
New cruise pier
On April 29, 2018, Port Visby opened a larger cruise ship pier (shown on the above photo). The facility is located in the harbor's southern area (close to "Berth 7").
The new berth allows handling of larger liners and has capacity of 2 vessels docking simultaneously (1 on each side of the pier). Each ship is restricted to max LOA length 360 m (1180 ft) and max draft 11 m (36 ft). With mooring abutments, the dock extends up to 600 m (1970 ft) out into the sea.
The terminal building (sized 300 m2) is adjacent to the quay and has dedicated parking (capacity 20 tour buses). The upgraded facility now allows docked vessels to empty their wastewater into an underground basin, from where the sludge is pumped to a sewage treatment plant.
Construction works on the new quay started in February 2016 and were completed in 2018. The project (budgeted USD 28 million) was joint venture between Gotland (building the facility) and CMP (Copenhagen-Malmo Port, managing the works).
Port Visby cruise ship schedule shows timetable calendars of all arrival and departure dates by month. The port's schedule lists all ships (in links) with cruises going to or leaving from Visby, Gotland Island, Sweden. To see the full itineraries (ports of call dates and arrival / departure times) and their lowest rates – just follow the corresponding ship-link.
|30 March, 2020|