Cruises have returned to Tunisia after a hiatus of two years caused by the Covid-19 pandemic.
The last cruise that landed in Tunis was on November 14, 2019, carrying 648 passengers. The global Covid-19 pandemic disrupted the cruise industry worldwide, halting revenue for Tunisia and north Africa.
According to the Tunisian Ministry of Tourism and Handicrafts, over 30 cruise ships are scheduled to dock at La Goulette, the port of Tunis. The first cruise ship docked on March 23, with a reported 724 tourists on board. Around 400 tourists left the cruise ship for experiences in Sousse, Kairouan, the Media and Bousaid, before leaving for Spain.
Mohamed Moez Belhassen, Minister of Tourism and Handicrafts, said that the return of cruises to the country was essential for tourism, as well as other sectors like crafts, culture and transport. He explained that the second cruise was expected to arrive in April, with a further 40 more scheduled throughout 2022.
In June 2021, MSC Cruises announced a return to Tunisia after seven years of absence for 2022. Pierfrancesco Vago, executive chairman of the company, said they were planning 27 calls to Tunisia between April and October 2022.
2010 is a reference year for cruises in the Tunisia. That year, the country welcomed 406 ships and 896,000 passengers.
Tunisia’s announcement comes soon after it was revealed on ITB Newsroom that Alaska’s tourism sector was also hoping to get a boost through its 2022 cruise schedule.