A luxury cruise ship with domestic tourists reached the shores of Kochi

Signaling the re-opening of the pandemic-hit tourism sector in Kerala for upcountry visitors, a luxury cruise from Mumbai with 1,200 travelers on board reached the shores of Kochi today.

The luxury liner MV Empress, owned by Cordelia Cruises, anchored at Cochin Port, Willingdon Island, at around 5 am. Around 800 guests on the ship, hailing from various States, disembarked at Kochi to explore a slice of the rich culture and history of the port city, in an on-shore tour adhering to Covid-19 protocols.

The cruise ship left for Kadamat, Lakshadweep, in the afternoon. Voyages Kerala is the tour agent organizing the Kochi sightseeing of the trip.

The tourists were taken to Mattancherry and Fort Kochi, touching several points of historical importance for which the area is famed. A boat ride on the backwaters had arranged for the visitors to mesmerize them with the beauty of Kochi — the ‘Queen of Arabian Sea’.

Kerala Tourism Minister P A Mohamed Riyas said, “The arrival of domestic tourists marks a promising start to the full-scale resumption of Kerala Tourism, overcoming the pandemic-induced crisis. This trend is set to gain pace in the coming days.

Kerala is a safe and secure place for lock-down weary vacationers to come as we have put in place an efficient and meticulous bio-bubble model to create protective layers of inoculated service providers to receive and host tourists,” the Minister added.

Venu V, Additional Chief Secretary, Tourism, said, “The tourism sector in Kerala is fast reconfiguring itself from the disruption caused by the Covid-19 pandemic. All destinations across the State are getting ready to receive guests. We are looking forward to a busy season ahead.”

V R Krishna Teja, Director, Tourism, said, tourism activities in Kerala are regaining its full pace. The recently announced visitor and stakeholder-friendly Caravan Tourism policy will expedite the process.