13 Cordelia Cruises HIP calls from June through September

Hambantota International Port (HIP) will enter the Indian cruise ship tourism mix with an agreement for 13 ship calls between June and September this year.

“We are positioning the port for multiple cruise ship categories, from luxury liners to all-inclusive, budget and low-budget carriers. With a depth of 17 meters, HIP can accommodate any cruise ship in the world and as a new and modern port we are well prepared for the needs of ships, crew and passengers, immigration and emigration, customs and secure passenger services. We are aware that there are more than 2000 cruise ports in the world and Hambantota International Port in the deep south of Sri Lanka is ideal to join this circle as it is a convenient port of call for ships cruising the Indian Ocean. We have a wide range of tourism options in close proximity to the port gate,” says Johnson Liu, CEO of Hambantota International Port Group.

Cordelia Cruise Lines, which offers vacation packages to Indian and international travelers, launched the Empress at HIP cruise packages from Chennai for the first time. The 745-passenger ship will call at three other key destinations on the island.

“Over the last six months we have seen an increase in cruise ships calling at HIP and we expect to continue to expand this service. Working with Hayleys Advantis, agents of Cordelia Cruise Lines, is another step in promoting Hambantota as an ideal cruise destination. “While the port’s location away from the bustling metropolis and its green surroundings provide additional attractions, the port also features a duty-free complex with shops offering quality imported products for ship passengers and crew,” added the CEO.

Hayleys Advantis offers tourists disembarking at Hambantota International Port a range of attractive excursions such as Galle Dutch Fort walks, river cruises, hikes to Diyaluma Falls and visits to a nearby turtle hatchery, as well as hikes through Yala, Udawalawe and Bundala National Parks. Visits to Akuressa Tea Factory, Unawatuna Beach and shopping trips are also included. Clarion Shipping, a subsidiary of Hayleys Advantis, is the agent for the ship.

The inaugural event at the HIP was attended by Keith D. Bernard, Chairman of SLPA, Jurgen Bailom, President and CEO of Cordelia Cruises, Ruwan Waidyaratne, Managing Director of Hayleys Advantis, Ms. PSM Charles, Governor of Northern Province, AMKD Adikari and ADGC Sri Lanka Customs, Rear Admiral TSK Perera, Southern Naval Commander, Snr DIG Southern Province, SC Medawatte, and Deputy Immigration Controller, Jayantha Rathnayake. The event was also attended by HIPG CEO Johnson Liu and senior management of Hambantota International Port.

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