Ideally located at the heart of the Western Mediterranean, Marseille is France’s leading cruise port, with 1,86 million cruise passengers in 2019. During the pandemic, Marseille Provence has appeared as a shelter port, welcoming 23 ships in lay up since March, and has made the safe repatriation of more than 6,500 passengers and crew possible. The cruise club has been working with the port, local and national authorities, as well as cruise professionnals, to prepare the safe resumption of cruises in 2021 by implementing new health and safety protocols.
Despite the pandemic, the port of Marseille has reaffirmed its commitments towards a greener cruise activity. Shore power is still under development for ferries, ropax vessel and cruise ships. It is planned to equip four berths by 2024 with shore power system, able to connect two cruise ships simultaneously, supplied by sustainable electricity. Also, the first two LNG bunkering operations by barge have been made in 2020 with the Costa Smeralda paving the way for more to come in the next years. Thanks to the incredible diversity of the Marseille Provence’s territory, the cruise club has also been working on more sustainable and eco-friendly shore excursions with local professionals. Cruise guests will enjoy open air tours, hiking, cycling or diving in one of ourthree national and regional natural parks,and meet with local winemakers, artists, etc.
Marseille Provence still benefits both from excellent port and ship repair facilities, and good international air, rail and road access. The Marseille Provence Cruise Terminal can handle up to six ships simultaneously with no size restrictions while the J4 terminal, in the city center, is dedicated to smaller ships. Chantier Naval de Marseille operates three dry docks including the no.10, the largest dry dock in the Mediterranean.