Philippines hailed as ‘Asia’s best cruise destination’
October 17, 2023 | 12:00am
MANILA, Philippines — The Philippines has been recognized by an international body as the “best cruise destination in Asia” for this year.
The country was awarded as “Asia’s Best Cruise Destination 2023” at the World Cruise Awards in Dubai, United Arab Emirates last Sunday, according to the Department of Tourism (DOT).
The Philippines bested other nominees India, Japan, Singapore, South Korea, Sri Lanka, Taiwan, Thailand and Vietnam, the website of the World Cruise Awards said.
In a statement yesterday, Tourism Secretary Christina Garcia-Frasco said the agency is grateful for the accolade, which was given to the country for the first time.
“This first-time recognition as Asia’s Best Cruise Destination 2023 is a big win for Philippine tourism as it reflects a resounding global preference for our island destinations,” Frasco said.
The World Cruise Awards is the “sister event of the World Travel Awards,” which also hailed the Philippines as “Asia’s leading dive destination” for this year.
Meanwhile, the country is expecting 128 cruise calls at 33 destinations, which could “bring in more than 101,000 passengers and some 50,000 in estimated crew,” according to Frasco.
So far, Manila and parts of Palawan and Romblon have received passengers and crew from cruise ships this year.
Popular beach destination Boracay as well as Subic are also expecting the arrival of cruise ships, while Mindanao is being groomed by DOT as a cruise destination.
The agency has vowed to make the Philippines become more attractive to travelers onboard cruise ships as part of the government’s efforts to revive the tourism industry battered by restrictions due to the COVID-19 pandemic.