Kiama to seek out more cruise ship visits

The cruise ship Pacific Jewel off the coast of Kiama last month. Picture: COLIN DOUCH
The cruise ship Pacific Jewel off the coast of Kiama last month. Picture: COLIN DOUCH

Latest statistics from Kiama Tourism confirm a successful 2013 for visitors to the municipality.

Kiama Tourism said its visitors' centre boasts the highest patronage of any similar centre along the South Coast with 98,765 last year.

"The close proximity of the Kiama Visitors Centre to Blowhole Point undoubtedly drives people inside to find out more and to make sure they're heading in the right direction," said Kiama Tourism manager Susie Scobie.

In terms of volunteers who staff the Kiama Visitor Centre 364 days a year, Kiama Tourism maintained its base of 38 people, some with 20 years' service.

Membership in 2013-14 includes 236 local businesses, almost double 2008's figure.

Kiama will feature in an upcoming Destination NSW marketing campaign and the "My Kiama" local tourism campaign will include a second phase of promotional activity, both starting next month.

Meantime Kiama's Economic Development Committee has asked council staff to investigate the possibility of establishing a cruise ship strategy following the surprise arrival of the P&O cruise ship the Pacific Jewel last month as part of the visit from the morning TV show Sunrise.

In a mayoral minute Brian Petschler said the anchoring of the cruise liner close to the Kiama township provided a tremendous sight and much interest for everyone.

"The Kiama backdrop and references to the location of the boat by the Sunrise hosts were a great promotion for the area," he said.

"The anchoring of the large cruise liner raised the opportunity for cruise liners to stop in the area with passengers possibly disembarking, being carried to the Kiama harbour by tenders.

"Council, in conjunction with Kiama Tourism, is to make inquiries with Carnival Australia, who manages P&O, and other cruises in Australia, on the possibility of future regular visits by cruise liners."


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