Batemans Bay will be welcoming the MS Caledonian Sky tomorrow as part of its east coast journey that started in Port Moresby PNG and finishes in Melbourne before setting sail to Tasmania and onto NZ.
Council's tourism & events team will be manning the Welcome Centre marquee on the foreshore next to The Boatshed and Mayor Innes will presenting a commemoration plaque to the ship Hotel Manager at around 10.30am.
The MS Caledonian Sky is one of many ships who are showing a keen interest in berthing in Batemans Bay offering their passengers the opportunity to explore the South East coast and to also enjoy an excursion to the Nation's capital just 2 hours inland. Eurobodalla Council’s tourism team is working with the NSW Ports Authority to establish a regular timetable of cruise ships visiting Batemans Bay. Council’s Tourism Manager Meredith Wray said Batemans Bay was an appealing destination for smaller cruise ships, and the closest port to Canberra. “NSW Ports Authority is working to attract cruise ships of no more than 1100 passengers, which also tend to be higher end,” she said. “The expectation is that they’ll give our economy a boost by supporting local businesses while they’re here. It also puts Batemans Bay in visitors’ minds if they plan to return to Australia, or they might recommend it to friends and family.” The waters will be tested tomorrow with a visit from the MS Caledonian Sky. Up to 90 passengers and 78 crew members will disembark. Another 450-passenger cruise ship, the MV Seabourn Sojourn, is expected to visit Batemans Bay in December.
One of the considerations currently being looked at closely by the newly formed Batemans Bay Foreshore committee will be to see a floating pontoon built as part of the upgrades that will enable passengers to easily and safely alight and enjoy the town. It is already being mooted that the best location would be where the wharf that services the MV Merida is berthed. This location is central to the town, adjacent to bus stands, perfect for cafes, easy access for all abilities to all cruise craft whilst also availing any recreational boater or fisher access to a public toilet.
Above: Passengers of the MS Caledonian Sky coming ashore at Trial Bay and South West Rocks yesterday were welcomed by dolphins and sunshine . Around 90 international passengers were welcomed by Kemsey Council ambassadors and spent the day on tours of the Gaol and Lighthouse, exploring the beaches and enjoying local hospitality.
Though it is argued the wharf is outside the scope of works it is also being firmly argued that it plays a vital part in the entire foreshore vision.