Record Cruise Ships Arrivals at Port of Heraklion in 2023

In 2023, cruise traffic in the port of Heraklion increased by 50%, with a record 382,981 cruise passengers arriving at the port.

With twice as many cruise ships compared to 2022 and a 50% increase in passenger traffic, December said goodbye to the major Cretan port, the port of Heraklion in Greece, leaving behind satisfaction for 2023 and optimism for a new record next year.

The management of Heraklion port authority said goodbye to Silver Moon on December 29, the last cruise ship for 2023 in the port of Heraklion, by organizing a special event.

The authority gave souvenirs and Christmas Cretan treats, whilst it offered an authentic traditional music and dance to all passengers when they disembarked at the cruise terminal.

Record Cruise Ships Arrivals at Port of Heraklion in 2023

According to the official data of the Heraklion port authority, a total of 382,981 cruise passengers visited the port in 2023, while cruise ship arrivals reached 253, marking a 27% increase compared to 2022 in passenger traffic.

In terms of passenger origin, the lion’s share for 2023 came from America, with 1 in 4 passengers and a total of 97,245 Americans, 54,629 Italians, 45,187 Germans and 42,416 English, in the top 4 nationalities.

Minas Papadakis, the managing director of Heraklion port authority, pointed out, “2023 marked an extremely successful year for cruises in the port of Heraklion, while 2024 is expected to be a new milestone, with arrivals reaching 300 cruise ships, 38 of the which are homeport.”

“With a collective effort and systematic work, the port of Heraklion is consistently chosen by the major companies in the sector as a port of embarkation and disembarkation for their ships, establishing it as one of the most important homeports of the Eastern Mediterranean”.

Ioannis Vardavas, the president of Heraklion port authority, noted that “The official figures for cruises in our port demonstrate its dynamics due to the high level of services provided, and prove that Heraklion is one of the most popular destinations in Greece.”

“The year 2024 will be another year of significant progress for the cruise with significant growth rates, with multiple benefits, both for the city of Heraklion and for the economy of Greece,” Vardavas added.

Record Cruise Ships Arrivals at Port of Heraklion in 2023