Ilfracombe Harbour welcomes cruise ship holiday makers

The MS Prinsendam in Ilfracombe on Saturday

Posted on: 19 July 2016

Ilfracombe welcomed hundreds of holiday makers on Saturday (16 July), as a cruise liner came to visit the town.

More than 700 passengers from MS Prinsendam came ashore, with 200 going on planned trips around North Devon and the rest choosing to stay in Ilfracombe.

Peter Reed from Cincinnati, was one of the first passengers ashore. He said: “The first thing we saw was the statue and I thought ‘what are we going to see here?’ The town looks really impressive from the sea, with all the houses on the hill and we are really looking forward to the day. We’re just here to explore, see the town and take it all in.”

Anne Reed from Houston, Texas, said: “I have an open mind – I haven’t researched the area at all, so I am just looking forward to seeing the town and enjoying whatever we find. We tend to have fun wherever we go.”

Meanwhile, Mr Keaton from Albuquerque, New Mexico, said: “I don’t believe I’ve seen anything quite like it! It’s the unknown, we don’t know what to expect, but we hear there is some shopping and a museum here, so I think we will be heading there.”

His wife, added: “It’s a gorgeous town and we got a very great first impression when we came in.”

Ilfracombe Harbourmaster, Lieutenant Commander Rob Lawson, said: “Although the sun only made a momentary appearance it didn’t seem to affect our guests and their enjoyment of the town. There was a fantastic and friendly atmosphere in the air throughout the day and every passenger that I spoke to had thoroughly enjoyed their time ashore. There were visitors from America, Japan, Chile and Sweden. The ship reported that the length of time spent ashore by individual passengers was longer in Ilfracombe than at anywhere else on the cruise, so well done Ilfracombe.”

Chairman of the Ilfracombe Harbour Board, Councillor Ian Meadlarkin, said: “It was nice to see the holiday makers coming ashore and enjoying everything the town has to offer. The weather behaved itself, providing a dry day making it enjoyable for all. Long may it continue.”

It is the third time the ship, which is operated by Holland America, has visited the town. The visit follows successful promotion by Destination South West, with support from the Harbourmaster and North Devon Council. Destination South West is a marketing partnership, which aims to increase the number of cruise ships that call at south west ports.

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Posted in: Leisure