This week (Wednesday 5th September 2018), Belfast welcomed Brilliance of the Seas on her maiden visit to the city.  Carrying 3,350 passengers and crew, many of whom will embark on a variety of shore excursions in the city and across Northern Ireland – it marks another milestone in Belfast’s
burgeoning cruise offering.

In keeping with maritime tradition, Belfast’s first citizen Councillor Deirdre Hargey took part in a plaque exchange, commemorating the ship docking in Belfast Harbour for the first time.  Speaking onboard the Lord Mayor commented

“I am honoured, along with Visit Belfast, Belfast Harbour and Hamilton Shipping, to exchange a city plaque with Captain Ante of Brilliance of the Seas on her maiden call to our city.

This is another indication of the success of Cruise Belfast, which has become an increasingly important element of our growing tourism economy.  Cruise ships bring many first-time visitors to Belfast, and the growing numbers demonstrate our ability to entice visitors from across the globe. They are arriving in Belfast to sample our rich culture, excellent hospitality and unique visitor attractions, and I extend the warmest welcome as Lord Mayor”.

As one of the largest ships scheduled to dock in Belfast Harbour this year, Brilliance of the Seas is the
second Radiance-class Royal Caribbean ship.  Launched in 2002, the 90,090-tonne passenger cruise ship is one of 117 cruise ships with Belfast on their itinerary this year, bringing an expected
200,000 visitors to the city.

Belfast has established itself as a destination of choice for cruise operators and visitors.  By the end of the season, over 700 cruise ships will have docked in Belfast Harbour, carrying 1.2 million cruise visitors, since the first arrival in 1996.

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