The monthly evolution of cruise passenger traffic in Barcelona shows figures not only of recovery, but also higher than those registered in the record year that was 2019. During the first four months of 2023, 557,072 passengers have arrived on board these floating hotels, 4,133 more than during the first four months of the pre-pandemic year. The great leap was registered in April, with 264,371 cruise passengers, double the number that arrived last year and 20,000 more than in 2019. The presence of these vessels adds tourist activity in a spring full of concerts, sporting events and congresses in the city.
The growth trend in cruise activity, consolidated over the last two months, will continue until October, according to the forecasts of the Observatori del Turisme in Barcelona. Thus, during this month of June, 72 boats are expected to arrive in the city; during July and August there will be more than 80, and in September and October there will be more than a hundred each month.
The calendar barely draws days without cruises. During this month there are only three days in which the arrival of none is scheduled; in July and August, four days, and only two without these boats in September, October and November. This weekend, between Saturday and Sunday, eight have landed; seven of them arrived at dawn and set sail after a few hours, in the middle of the afternoon.
The Observatori del Turisme calculates that by the end of the year around 830 cruise ships will have operated in the port, which places the city above the figures for 2022, which registered a beginning of the year still at half throttle due to restrictions due to the pandemic, and also above the figures for 2019, the year in which the record number of 3,137,978 cruise passengers was reached for the first time in Barcelona.
The figures confirm that, despite the agreement reached five years ago between the City Council and the port, which meant reducing cruise terminals from nine to seven, activity has not decreased. That 2018 framework agreement resulted in the closure of the Maremagnum terminal and the north terminal of the World Trade Center to concentrate activity on the Barcelona and Adossat docks, where this morning the Enchantment of the Seas, the MSC Orchestra, have docked. the Emerald Coast, the Arvia and the Viking Mars. These last two are the ones that will spend the longest time in the port of Barcelona. The Arvia, until Tuesday afternoon (it is scheduled to leave at 6:00 p.m.), and the Viking Mars, until Wednesday afternoon, so it will have been in the city for three days.
During the past year, the port recorded a total of 2.3 million cruise passengers. Of these, one million made a stopover and 650,000 boarded and disembarked passengers in Barcelona. If the forecast pace is maintained, this year activity will be significantly higher.