Cruise ship Viking Sea and mega-yacht L’Austral set to visit Portsmouth International Port for the first time over Easter
EASTER is set to bring a busy weekend of cruise activity to Portsmouth International Portsmouth – with two vessels visiting the city for the first time.
On Good Friday the transport hub will host cruise liner Viking Sky, eight days into her two-week day voyage from Barcelona.
As many as 930 guests on board the ship are expected to hop off and explore Portsmouth’s heritage.
The second visit will come on Easter Monday, when Ponant’s mega-yacht, L’austral, will also make her maiden voyage into Portsmouth.
Her 264 guests will embark on their eight-day Celtic Shores cruise from the city, stopping at the Isles of Scilly, Cork, Liverpool, the Isle of Man, Belfast and Dublin.
Mike Sellers, port director at Portsmouth International Port said: ‘We’re honoured to welcome these two new ships to the city and hope this will be the first of many visits to Portsmouth as we look to increase the number of cruise calls at the port.
‘Both cruise lines are extremely important and we’re delighted to host so many of their fleet.
‘We offer great connections from both the sea and the land, ships are closer to the main shipping channels and we’re also neighbours to world-class attractions and the motorway for tours further afield.
‘We hope the ship’s guests will have taken the opportunity to explore all the city has to offer, including Portsmouth Historic Dockyard, the D-Day Story, Gunwharf Quays and the iconic Emirates Spinnaker Tower.’
Another ship liner is expected to make her Portsmouth debut in May, the Viking Jupiter, which launched earlier this year.
Portsmouth was also visited by Viking Sky a year ago – the 745ft liner which recently lost power off the coast of Norway, prompting a 470-guest rescue mission.
Among the people on the ship at the time was former Havant council leader and HMS Victory captain, Michael Cheshire, and his wife Wendy.