A very special day for the port of Taranto: once again a double call with two cruise ships berthing at the same time today.
The ship Aegean Odyssey, coming from Kotor (Montenegro) and on its way to Catania, entered the port of Taranto for its maiden call early this morning. The cruise ship, chartered to the tour operator Road Scholar, carries its international guests all around the Mediterranean to discover its many cultural attractions. Apart from Taranto, the itinerary “Odyssey at sea” includes Venice, Kotor, Catania, Naples, Livorno, La Spezia and Genoa. Joyful water displays from the tugboats greeted the ship before its berthing at Quay 2.
The West Side of the San Cataldo Pier welcomed the regular Wednesday call of the MSC Splendida, which performs turn-around calls for passenger boarding and disembarking at the terminal managed by Taranto Cruise Port, part of the GPH international network. As of the month of June, excursions are available that include the possibility for passengers to go on a tour of the surrounding area on the ship Clodia, enjoying an exceptional view of the city of Taranto from the sea.
These calls marked the opening of the summer season for the port of Taranto: with its cultural itineraries, its opportunities for discovering the local food and wine culture, and its Old Town streets for passengers preferring to explore the city on foot, Taranto is once again a multifaceted destination chosen by many.
This is the third time this year that the Ionian port has hosted two calls contemporarily: the first was on May 11th when the MSC Splendida and the Celebrity Constellation were in the spotlight, while on May 16th the Marella Explorer 2 and the Noble Caledonia Monet were accomodated. Today even a greater number passengers– 230 aboard the Aegean Odyssey and 1.153 on the MSC Splendida – were introduced to the beauty of the Ionian area.
The ceremony to celebrate the Aegean Odyssey inaugural (maiden) call saw the participation of the Port Network Authority and the Taranto Cruise Port, during which the Aegean Odyssey was given the Port Network Authority Crest and a set of historical books/volumes from the National Archaeological Museum of Taranto and the Diocesan Museum, curators of the archaeological and cultural heritage of the territory.
“The prospects for the current cruise season are extremely positive,” President Sergio Prete declared. “We are expecting a total of 54 cruise calls up to November, which is nearly double compared to 2021, and Taranto has been chosen by 9 different cruise companies. We are now reaping the benefits of a promotional strategy that was carried out with dedication during these last pre-pandemic years. The ongoing collaboration for the diversification of port activities with the Authorities, the port operators and the local institutions represents a key element for the development of the territory. Taranto’s success as a cruise destination is both an outstanding achievement as well as a stepping stone for future projects centered around the potential roles of the port and the city, featuring sustainable tourism and culture.