Cruise tourism in Kenya is expected to receive a major boost after the completion of a world-class cruise ship terminal at Mombasa in August.
This is according to Tourism and Wildlife Cabinet Secretary, Najib Balala, who expressed optimism that the terminal would be ready for the cruise ship season, which begins in November this year. He said there was a need to market Mombasa as a cruise destination, as the ministry was looking to benefit from global cruise tourism.
Kenya has been focusing on growth from the cruising sector after the country saw growth in arrivals from high-end holiday-makers. "We have seen growing interest by cruise liners attracted to Mombasa port," added Balala.
A survey carried out in 2015 by Tourism and Transport Consult International on cruise tourist potential in Kenya predicted that Mombasa could attract 140 000 visitors a year. In the past ten years Mombasa had 40 000 cruise tourists, according to the survey, which projects that numbers will go up after completion of the new terminal.
The terminal will have arrival and departure areas, an immigration office, reception counters, a lounge for passengers, a restaurant and a souvenir shop.
The construction of phases one and two are complete, with the third phase expected to be completed by September.