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Cruise ship sets sail from new Nansha home port

BY :China Daily

UPDATED :2024-06-26

Nearly 1,000 passengers embarked on a voyage from Guangzhou's new Nansha International Cruise Home Port on June 25. The Blue Dream Melody cruise ship set sail for a five-day, four-night visa-free adventure to Vietnam's Ha Long Bay, marking the official opening of the much-anticipated port in Guangdong province.

The 609-cabin Blue Dream Melody, operated by Shanghai Blue Dream International Cruises Holding, boasts a variety of stylish dining options, shopping venues and leisure activities for guests to enjoy throughout their journey.

Nansha International Cruise Home Port, under construction since 2016, began trial operations in November 2019. The ambitious project, spearheaded by CCCC Urban Investment Holding Company, envisions a 1,600-meter shoreline with dual berths capable of accommodating massive cruise ships of up to 225,000 gross tons.

Phase I, currently operational, features a 770-meter shoreline with dual berths and a 60,000-square-meter terminal building. The phase boasts a designed annual passenger capacity of 750,000. Future plans include the construction of commercial and office facilities, including an international shipping center and a seafarers' home.

The Nansha port seamlessly integrates with various transportation modes, including buses, subways and waterborne passenger services to the Hong Kong and Macao special administrative regions. This distinction makes it China's first inland cruise port with direct subway connections.

The Blue Dream Melody cruise ship sets sail from the Nansha International Cruise Home Port in Guangzhou, Guangdong province, on June 25, marking the port's opening. (Photo/Guangzhou Daily)

"Nansha International Cruise Home Port fills a critical gap in Guangzhou's cruise industry infrastructure," said Chen Jiannian, deputy general manager of Guangzhou Port Group. "This port will act as a catalyst for the development of cruise tourism, ship supplies, consumer shopping and leisure entertainment industries."

Chen emphasized the port's potential to attract domestic and international cruise lines to operate regularly from Nansha.

"Guangzhou's strong passenger base, prime location, excellent infrastructure and favorable visa policies give us a significant edge," he said. "Nansha International Cruise Home Port will play a pivotal role in establishing Guangzhou as a world-class consumer tourism destination within the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao Greater Bay Area."

Acknowledging the current market challenge of more ports than ships, Nansha officials are actively pursuing strategic marketing efforts.

"We will leverage Guangzhou's strengths in passenger base, location and infrastructure to attract domestic and international cruise companies," said Xie Xiaohui, director of Nansha district commerce bureau. "By collaborating with nearby cities and capitalizing on Nansha's unique geographical position, we aim to develop distinctive cruise routes and enrich the travel experiences for passengers."

Nansha has implemented convenient visa policies established by the National Immigration Administration. These policies include a 15-day visa-free entry and a 144-hour visa-free transit specifically for cruise passengers entering China.

Editor: Pauline