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Dominican Republic records huge increase in cruise passengers in 2016

The Dominican Republic is experiencing a significant increase in cruise passenger arrivals this year. According to data revealed by the Ministry of Tourism, the Caribbean country has received 580,000 cruise arrivals so far in 2016, which is a 67.5 rise from the same period in 2015. The growth in visitors has been helped by the opening of the new Amber Cove cruise port complex in Puerto Plata last year.

Dominican Republic records huge increase in cruise passengers in 2016

The Dominican Republic has recorded a rise in cruise passengers this year, with more than 580,000 cruise arrivals so far. According to data released by the Ministry of Tourism, numbers have increased by an impressive 67.5 per cent compared to the same period in 2015.

The increase in cruise holidaymakers has been helped by the opening of the country’s newest port, Amber Cove. The port in Puerto Plata opened last year, and was developed by Carnival Cruise Line. The port has two berths that can accommodate two mega cruise ships at the same time, and so far this year, Carnival Cruise Line has made nearly 40 calls to the new facility with more than 305,800 passengers.

It is the first time a cruise liner has called at Puerto Plata in more than 30 years, and the region is becoming an increasingly popular tourist destination. Located on the north-eastern coast of the Dominican Republic, Puerto Plata has become a favourite adventurous travellers, golfers, and travellers who are seeking eco-friendly holidays. The region is home to magnificent unspoilt beaches, and a town that is steeped in history and culture. Its natural landscapes were used as the setting in the first Jurassic Park film.

In the first six months of 2016, the Dominican Republic received more than three million international tourists, which was a 6.5 per cent increase compared to the same period last year. Cruise arrivals exceeded 230,000 between January and June this year, and the Department of Cruise Tourism is expecting to record 650,000 cruise passengers by the end of 2016.

Holidaymakers can arrive to the Caribbean nation via three main cruise ports. The capital Santa Domingo has two cruise ship piers; La Romana has one cruise terminal; and Puerto Plata boasts the brand new Amber Cove which can accommodate up to 10,000 passengers.

The Dominican Republic draws travellers from all over the globe, and its landscapes are synonymous with the Caribbean. White sand beaches are fringed with swaying coconut palm trees and the lapping waves of the sapphire sea, and emerald-sloped hills lead to mountainous terrain and cascading waterfalls.

The nation has become a firm favourite for eco-conscious travellers, and as well as having established protected areas spanning more than 20 per cent of its coastline and land, it also is home to the world’s first whale sanctuary. One of the best places to see these beautiful creatures is Samana Bay on the north-eastern coast. 

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