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neilcvx

Mercure Roscoff

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At St Malo a few smaller cruise ships go into the Bassin Vauban, but most are on the mooring buoys of Dinard with their boats running in to the Gare Maritime de la Bourse. During the Route du Rhum build up, one was in and landed passengers at Dinard. (It was the maiden voyage and owned by François Pinault, whose house overlooks....). The mooring buoys occasionally accommodate 2 cruise ships at the same time! No cruise ships use the ferry berths.

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But rather like Guernsey I think that landing conditions are not always favourable and shore excursions might need to be cancelled at short notice. On balance, cruise ships do not favour tender ports and much prefer to berth alongside where getting passengers off and on is so much easier. The larger the ship the more difficult the logistical exercise.

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If the long term aim is to attract cruise passengers then an overhaul of the building and its facilities is essential. Cherbourg has separate ferry and cruise terminals as the needs are not really the same. Portsmouth manages to combine them after being purpose-built with both options envisaged from the start. 

I find the terminals at Ouistreham and St Malo to be very similar in the way that they feel cramped, badly laid out and don't use enough natural light. Cherbourg and Le Havre, with their split-level buildings and viewing lounges are much more pleasant places to wait. 

The added bonus of course is that any revamp will hopefully do away with St Malo's ridiculously uncomfortable chicken-cage passenger benches. Ed. 

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In St Malo, cruise passengers come ashore at the "old" terminal, the Gare Maritime de la Bourse, which used to be used for the non vehicle ferries to the CI and is used by the Compagnie Corsaire for its tourist boats. There are plans to upgrade the building and facilities to better match expectations of cruise passengers. Out of interest, the excellent Extra Muros restaurant at the west end of the building, has just changed hands and name, now L'Amiral. No reports yet.

In general, it would be very rare for there to be major difficulties shuttling passengers ashore from what is a pretty protected anchorage. In strong Northerlies, the adjust lines to "crab" the ship a little, providing a sheltered leeward side.

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I think the truth is that cruise ships have become a bit of a plague. There are so many of them now that the companies are forced to look for more obscure ports of call which may not be very suitable or are easily swamped.

Whilst ports have previously welcomed them, the reality is that the passengers don't actually spend much during their short time ashore as all their meals (and of course their accommodation)  are already included in their fare on the ship. They might have a coffee, drink or an ice cream etc. but don't  bring much of a financial boost to the destination although they do clog up the streets.

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Yes we gave up trying to walk the ramparts of the intra muros as it was so clogged up (in March ) they  are talking about building a port in Prestonpans for Edinburgh I hope they don’t Edinburgh is bad enough with tourists as it is.

Edited by neilcvx

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1 hour ago, neilcvx said:

Yes we gave up trying to walk the ramparts of the intra muros as it was so clogged up (in March ) they  are talking about building a port in Prestonpans for Edinburgh I hope they don’t Edinburgh is bad enough with tourists as it is.

I'd imagine Edinburgh in August is only ever one cruise ship away from becoming the next Dubrovnik.

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14 minutes ago, penguin said:

I'd imagine Edinburgh in August is only ever one cruise ship away from becoming the next Dubrovnik.

I don’t go up to Edinburgh in August (it’s less than an hour away) it’s bad enough to get around you can’t get anything to eat or on a bus, I’ve seen one of the big MSC ships  next to the Forth bridge but I don’t know if they come ashore or not.

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46 minutes ago, colin said:

Staggering the number, and size of cruise ships calling at Lerwick these days....

There’s some stunning photos they tower over the skyline.

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