Cruise visitors will double Lerwick’s population
The population of Lerwick is set to double tomorrow (Tuesday) with the arrival of two cruise ships.
One of those vessels counts among the largest in the world and is the biggest cruise ship yet to visit the isles.
Measuring 65 metres high and 316 metres long the 171,598 gross tonnes MSC Meraviglia will dominate the harbour when she calls to the Shetland port on her maiden visit.
The vessel will be carrying 5,092 passengers – the most on a single ship at Lerwick – and over 1,500 crew.
Adding to the numbers will be the 225 metre, 42,830 gross tonne Europa 2 which first visited the isles last year. There will be around 900 people on board, over 500 of which will be passengers.
Coincidentally, both ships are registered in Malta and will depart Lerwick for Reykjavik on round-trips from Hamburg.
Lerwick Port Authority senior commercial executive Victor Sandison said: “We have had more ships on a single day, but with almost 7,500 passengers and crew and subject to the weather holding, it will be the busiest cruise day yet for Lerwick – population around 7,500.
“Our involvement with the cruise sector just keeps getting bigger and better, with larger vessels and higher numbers. This season we expect to welcome 93 ships and approaching 93,000 passengers in an all-round record year.”