Rebuilding of cruise traffic continues.
The cruise ship, Marella Explorer 2, became the third so far this season to visit Lerwick when she arrived on a maiden visit, to be welcomed with a “water salute” from pilot vessel, Knab.
The newest in the Marella fleet, operated by TUI UK, the 72,458 gross tonnes, 246 metre vessel anchored in the Inner Harbour today (Monday 26 July). The visit follows the Scottish Government’s easing of Covid-19 restrictions a week earlier, allowing domestic cruises to call at Scottish ports.
Marella Explorer 2 has cabins for 1,814 passengers and of the around 800 adult-only guests on board, approximately a third will disembarked via tenders to experience Shetland through pre-arranged shore excursions with Marella Cruises.
Lerwick Port Authority’s Cruise & Marketing Manager, Melanie Henderson, said: “Marella Explorer 2 is another excellent example of the lengths cruise line operators are implementing to protect passengers and crew and the communities visited. Marella have meticulously planned Covid-19 procedures both onboard and throughout their shore arrangements.
“Great cooperation by islanders is making a major contribution to the success of procedures being implemented onshore to ensure the safe restart. We are looking forward to the rest of the visits planned this season and better things to come next year, with increasing input to the Shetland economy.”
Lerwick was first to receive a cruise ship visit – the first in 17 months – when Scottish ports reopened to UK sailings with UK passengers only on 19 July. A total of 21 vessels are expected by close of the truncated season in October.