While it won’t officially open until this autumn, the Gazenica cruise port in Zadar, Croatia has already welcomed its first visitors.
On Friday last week (July 11th), the Celebrity Equinox became the first ship to dock at the new 12-berth facility, on which construction commenced five years ago.
The government of Croatia has spent a total of €143.8 million (£114 million) on the project, Seatrade Insider reports. This includes construction of motorway links that provide access to Zadar Airport and Zagreb.
When the port becomes active, it will be able to accept vessels of any size – though only five berths will serve cruise ships, with the remaining seven reserved for local ferry traffic.
Zadar itself is currently proving popular with cruise operators, having registered almost 70 calls and 35,000 passengers in 2013 – a 70 per cent increase on 2012. It expects to host as many as 100,000 passengers per year by 2015.
Gazenica is set to enter operation in either late September or early October.