The Top End will roll out the welcome mat for luxury liner Queen Mary 2 which will now overnight in Darwin on 24 February, providing a $700,000 boost to local businesses.
The cruise liner will arrive from Fremantle at 6.30am on Monday 24 February and depart at 5pm the next day with up to 2,620 passengers expected to spend the two days eating and drinking in cafes, restaurants and bars, shopping and enjoying local tour offerings.
Cruise guests will also have the opportunity to experience the Bruce Munro: Tropical Light art trail and take advantage of Tropical Light tours and experiences on offer from local businesses.
The overnight stay in Darwin is part of changes to the Queen Mary 2’s schedule as a result of new cruise sector protocols to deal with the novel coronavirus outbreak.
It is one of 80 cruise and expeditionary ships scheduled to stop in Darwin this season carrying a total of 74,434 passengers and providing a welcome boost to the economy.
Radiance of the Seas will dock in Darwin tomorrow, Monday 17 February, carrying up to 2,496 passengers, before departing at 6pm the same day.
Darwin is set to welcome a number of additional cruise ship arrivals as companies adjust their schedules to address current restrictions in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak.
As noted by Acting Minister for Tourism, Sport and Culture, Eva Lawler:
“Tourism is a vital part of the NT’s economy and the Territory Labor Government is working to minimise the impacts of the Australian bushfires and the coronavirus outbreak on the local tourism industry.
“We’ve rolled out a $2 million Immediate Tourism Resilience Plan geared at attracting visitors right now through our Holiday Here This Year campaign, supporting local tourism businesses and making sure people have a great time while they’re here, including our cruise ship visitors.
“We have many challenges ahead, but it is heartening to see our cruise ship sector going strong.”
As noted by Member for Port Darwin, Paul Kirby MLA:
“Darwin enjoys year-round cruise activity which is great for our local operators and businesses – the Queen Mary 2’s overnight visit will offer a strong boost to our local economy.
“We are reminding domestic visitors to Holiday Here This Year and reiterate to international visitors that the Territory is open for business.”