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Queen Mary 2 Visits Saguenay

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Yesterday marked the first time that Cunard’s flagship Queen Mary 2 visited Saguenay, Quebec, Canada.  The vessel’s arrival attracted almost 40,000 spectators to the port, and a fun-filled atmosphere awaited guests who arrived there.

A special program was created to mark the special day.  Over 160 volunteers dressed in La Fabuleuse costumes were there, ready to offer cruise passengers a memorable reception with traditional dances and samples of local products.  Saguenay’s mayor, along with dignitaries, welcomed Captain Kevin Oprey of Queen Mary 2 as well; notably one of the day’s highlights.  The occasion also marked the ten year anniversary since the first major wharf facilities were built there to one day accommodate the large transatlantic liner – a dream that is now reality for the young port of call.

Saguenay’s harbor village was filled with music throughout the day for the guests and public, and Québec Issime provided a musical crescendo that coincided with the departure of the ship.  Visitors and passengers wished goodbye by waving thousands of red festival flags, and the crowd gathered around the bay for a last glimpse of the ship for the day.

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The activities came to a close with a dazzling fireworks display organized by the Saguenay Fjord’s villages as Queen Mary 2 left for the Saint Lawrence River.

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CANADA

Québec, Canada Wants Wintertime Cruise Guests

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With the increased demand for cruises to Canada and New England, and the growing trend of cold weather cruises, Québec tourism and port officials recently invited representatives from Adventure Canada, Huerten-Groten and Ponant cruise lines to partake in the first-ever winter familiarization trip to the region.

A ship docked in Québec City – photo: Flickr/Visavis

The group visited Québec from February 8-14, and explored Montréal, Trois-Rivères, Québec, and Saguenay. Activities in Québec included a tour of the port, a taste of the winter Carnaval, a visit to the city’s famed ice hotel “Hotel de Glace,” and urban discovery tours. There was also a trip to Montmorency Falls and the Valcartier Vacation Village, the largest winter playground in America. It has over 35 snow slides, skating paths, snow rafting, 5,000 inner tubes and 17 mechanical lifts, plus ice skating, tobogganing, dog sledding, ski-dooing, and ice fishing.

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Other wintery activities were shown to the group in presentations and discussions. Hôtel 71 in Old Québec City hosted the group during their stay and Chlorophylle, a local manufacturer of upmarket outdoor gear outfitted them in warm year.

For information on activities in Québec City, click here.

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CANADA

Port Saint John Predicts a Great Season Ahead

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The 30th season at Port Saint John, New Brunswick starts this year with the May 1 arrival of Oceania Cruises’ Marina. It will conclude on November 2, when Regent Seven Seas Cruises’ Seven Seas Navigator comes to town.

By the time the last ship casts its lines, 75 vessels will have visited, bringing approximately 176,000 guests and 70,000 crew along. This represents a 19 percent increase in passengers over the 2017 season, and a 13 percent increase in the number of cruise ship calls. Cruise activity provides an annual $49.9 million boost to New Brunswick’s economy. The total impact included direct spending by cruise lines, passengers, and crew in New Brunswick of $21.5 million, 298 direct jobs in the province, and $12.5 million in personal income.

Highlights for the upcoming 2018 season include:

  • 14 double cruise ship days
  • 2 triple cruise ship days
  • 5 inaugural calls (Adventure of the Seas, Asuka II, Hebridean Sky, AIDAvita, and Norwegian Escape)
  • New cruise lines to call in Saint John (NYK Cruises, AIDA Cruises, and expedition-class cruise line Noble Caledonia and Pearl Seas)
  • Notable ship visit: Queen Mary 2 on July 3, 2018

Port Saint John is Canada’s third largest port by tonnage and has a diverse cargo base, including dry and liquid bulk, break bulk, containers, and cruise.

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CANADA

Port Saint John Seeing More Cruise Passengers

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The 2017 season at Port Saint John, Canada provided a 3 percent increase in cruise passengers over the same 2016 time frame, with 208,818 visitors. The port also received one extra port of call from a cruise ship this year; 64 compared to 63 last year.

Highlights of 2017 for the port included:

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  • 12 double cruise ship days and 5 triple cruise ship days in September and October
  • 2 inaugural calls: Vision of the Seas and TUI’s Mein Schiff 6
  • Introduction of German-based TUI Cruises to Port Saint John
  • 2 calls by Disney Cruise Line’s Disney Magic
  • Anthem of the Seas, the largest cruise ship to call in Port Saint John to date, stopped there 4 times

Earlier this year, the port released updated economic impact figures from the cruise sector in New Brunswick. Total annual impact from the cruise industry in New Brunswick has risen from $41.5 million per year to $49.9 million per year, an increase of 20 percent. The total impact included direct spending by cruise lines, guests, and crew in New Brunswick, 298 direct jobs in the Province, and $12.5 million in personal income.

Port Saint John is Canada’s third largest port by tonnage, the country’s fourth busiest cruise port, and has a diverse cargo base.

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