India’s first full-fledged global cruise terminal to be built in Kochi. Coming up at the Ernakulam wharf in Willingdon Island, the terminal will be commissioned in February 2020. Backed with the aim of promoting tourism avenues in the state, the foundation stone for an international cruise Terminal at the Ernakulam Wharf of Cochin Port was laid by Alphons Kannanthanam, Union Minister of State for Tourism last year.
Valued at an INR 25.72 crore, the cruise terminal will facilitate and accommodate a volume of up to 5000 tourists all spread over 12,200 sq. Ft. It will bring personnel of customs, Bureau of Immigration and CISF under one roof, thus speeding up paperwork. Cochin Port Trust (CPT) Chairperson M. Beena said “ plans are also afoot to have regular helicopter services from the terminal to different tourist locales in Kerala.
Its commissioning will see the revamping of the wharf, an area to stage traditional art forms, and the availability of ATM and food kiosks on the premises. There will also be a permanent space for selling artefacts and others to tourists, aimed at improving visitor experiences”.
India’s first full-fledged global cruise terminal to come up in Cochin Port pic.twitter.com/6j97DNUhvx
— Cochin Port Trust (@cochin_port) November 14, 2019
With cruise tours increasing over the years in Kochi, the number of tourist boarding from city to city has gone up from 200 people in 2016 to 800 this year. Notably, with around 2.30 lakh Indians travelling by cruise ships last year, the number Keralites opting for cruises is increasing at the rate of 25 per cent each year, including individuals, families and corporate groups.
Further adding on Chairperson M. Beena said, that a task force has been set up, comprising Shipping and Tourism Secretaries to promote cruise tourism in the country. Aiming to exceed the expectations of domestic and international cruise liners in the coming years, the tourism board and the CPT would love to see more cruises dock at God’s own country.