Colombia prepares for growth in 2023-2024 cruise season

The cruise industry is expected to have an economic impact of almost $50 million in the country

Colombia prepares for growth in 2023-2024 cruise season


An estimated 334,000 cruise passengers will visit Colombia in the 2023-24 season

By Alex Smith |

Colombia is preparing for the start of its 2023-24 cruise season, with the South American country anticipating significant growth compared to previous years.

According to data provided by port authorities to government agency ProColombia, at least 30 cruise lines will make calls in Colombia during the season, carrying an estimated 334,000 passengers. Visiting companies will include Royal Caribbean International, Princess Cruises, Norwegian Cruise Line, Holland America Line, Celebrity Cruises MSC Cruises, and AIDA Cruises, among others.

Around 14 ships will also arrive in Cartagena, Santa Marta and Buenaventura for the first time, Buenaventura will also receive its first expedition cruise ship during the season, Plantours Cruises’ Hamburg.

Meanwhile, efforts are being coordinated with local communities and authorities to receive four cruise ship arrivals in Cabo de la Vela from Emerald Cruises, Noble Caledonia and Hurtigruten during the first half of 2024.

The cruise industry is expected to have an economic impact of almost $50 million in Colombia during the cruise season.

"This achievement is the result of our strategy to explore and promote non-traditional destinations that are emerging as hidden gems with immense potential to captivate and enchant cruise passengers,” said Carmen Caballero, president of ProColombia. “This commitment confirms our dedication to diversification and innovation in the cruise industry, offering travelers unforgettable experiences in places that have not yet been fully discovered.”

In 2022-2023, cruise arrivals in Colombia increased by 151 per cent compared to 2021-2022, while passenger arrivals grew by 346 per cent. The ports of Sapzurro and Capurganá were also visited for the second year in a row in 2023by one of Lindblad Expeditions’ National Geographic ships, after receiving their first calls in 2022.

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