The Star (Nairobi)

Kenya: Tourism Sector Upbeat As Cruise Ships Pay Calls At Mombasa

THE recent call at the Port of Mombasa by a cruise ship MV Nautica has left players in the sector upbeat about the future prospects of the industry amid insecurity issues.

Mombasa and Coast Tourist Association chair Mohamed Hersi told the star that the move is an indication that Kenya is slowly returning to its glory as a tourist hub.

"The industry is now breathing a sigh of relief because tourists themselves are making an approval that Kenya is safe. That means that the Kenyan war to combat piracy and terrorism is yielding fruits," said Hersi.

MV Nautica, with about 654 tourists from Britain and 401 crew members, made a call at the port of Mombasa en route to Zanzibar.

Another cruise ship, MV Deutschland from Germany, with 424 passengers and 274 crew members is scheduled for Mombasa on December 31.

Two others are expected at the port between January 18 and 26.

Poll man tours managing director Khalid Shapi said tourist aboard cruise ships are the highest spenders, using as low as $500 each on daily expenditure thus boosting the region's economy.

Head of tourist police unit at the coast Wilberforce Sicharani attributed the visits to growing calm in the Indian Ocean.

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