Background and Aim
Cruise Gateway North Sea was working to develop and promote the cruise industry in the North Sea Region. It was a three-year project with 12 cruise-related partners from six countries, co-financed by the EU-Interreg IVB North Sea Region Programme.
Its partners were working together to:
- Encourage sustainable growth of cruise shipping in the North Sea Region – always considering the environmental issues
- Emphasise the unique attractions offered by the NSR as a cruise destination
- Build up a marketing strategy and create a ‘Cruise Destination North Sea’ identity
- Establish an integrated approach among all stakeholders, promoting reliable, high-quality services across all NSR cruise ports and ensuring accessibility
- Exchange knowledge and experience between partners through a programme of conferences, workshops, surveys and studies
High growth rates of cruise tourism in Europe have been recorded in particular for the Baltic and Mediterranean Seas. However, so far the North Sea Region has not been recognized as a cruise destination of its own. Homeports are rare, multi-modal links lacking, regional economic effects underdeveloped and cruise circles missing. However in a booming market the North Sea Region definitely is an attractiveness holiday destination.
To benefit from these prospects and opportunities for improvement, the North Sea Region has to meet challenges such as:
- How can a regional cruise policy ensure a sound performance of this industry?
- How can ports and related actors promote a regional maritime identity?
- How can growth be managed in a sustainable way?
- Will attention be paid to service bottlenecks?
- Will regional culture and nature of ports play a role?
Cruise Gateway's project partners aimed to contribute to improved cruise accessibility in the North Sea Region on a sustainable basis, enabling comprehensive economic and social benefits.