Despite millions of travellers visiting Africa each year, the continent is yet to make a big impression in the world of cruising. So far, the whole continent has been largely untapped, with very few cruise ships sailing to or even passing through the region.
There are a number of reasons for this which have been raised by cruise lines, just a few of these are; safety and security, high costs, poor infrastructure and the general instability of the region. For passengers, the safety and security issue is likely to be paramount, especially after the recent big news stories involving pirates in the region.
The corporate operating officer of MSC Cruises has talked about the lack of infrastructure which is really holding the industry back. He is calling for a dedicated cruise terminal to be built in Durban because as it stands, it can take hours and hours to actually get passengers on and off the ship.
He says that there is a demand from passengers to visit Africa, and who can blame them with all that the continent has to offer, but unfortunately at the present time it just isn’t viable.
I personally would love to travel to various places in Africa on a cruise ship, what a great way to explore such a diverse landscape and imagine the excursions – safari anyone? Let’s hope the issues surrounding this do get ironed out in the next few years and we might just see more cruises visit this beautiful region.