Two Ships Opened Cleveland Cruise Season Memorial Day Weekend

Cleveland – May 28, 2024 – 588 vacationers arrived to explore The Land

Both Viking’s Octantis and Pearl Seas opened the passenger cruising season in Cleveland on May 26. This is the second year that both cruise lines will have multiple calls at the Port of Cleveland.

“Our cruise partners have said the Great Lakes region is booming for tourists because they want to experience the diverse cultures that make this region so unique,” said David S. Gutheil, Chief Commercial Officer, Port of Cleveland. “It’s part of the U.S. that these passengers have not seen before. Cleveland alone has very diverse neighborhoods with deep cultural backgrounds, which help explain it’s growing popularity as a cruise ship destination and helping make tourism a vital part of our local economy.”

Last year, well-known travel adviser “The Points Guy” called Cleveland – yes Cleveland – the hottest new cruise destination in North America.

Great Lakes cruise ships have become an economic engine for Cleveland. Cruise ships started docking in Cleveland in 2017 — there were nine that year — and this year 24 cruise stops are planned and more than 50 are already on the Port’s schedule for the 2025 season.

Estimates report that each cruise passenger in Cleveland spends about $150 — or $1.5 million for 10,000 travelers — and other economic impact includes the salaries of dock workers, tour operators and others.

The Pearl Seas, a 210-passenger ship, is the only cruise ship coming through Cleveland which has full private balconies for every room and is a fully stabilized ship.

Viking’s Octantis can carry up to 378 guests. Viking cruise ships first came to Cleveland in 2023. It made eight stops in Cleveland last year and will make eight calls again this year.

Passenger shore excursions in Greater Cleveland include the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, the West Side Market, the Cleveland Museum of Art and the Cleveland Cultural Gardens, a walking tour of downtown Cleveland or Little Italy, a hike or biking tour in Cuyahoga Valley National Park, a beer tasting at Great Lakes Brewing Company, a culinary tour and an excursion to Amish country in Geauga County.

# # # #