The first cruise ship of the season – the Celebrity Eclipse – docked in Victoria on April 16. (Arnold Lim/News Staff)

First cruise ship of the season docks in Victoria

The largest ship in the schedule due to arrive on May 12

The first cruise ship of the season – the Celebrity Eclipse – docked in Victoria early Tuesday morning.

April 16 marked the start of a busy cruise ship season for the Greater Victoria Harbour Authority.

“It’s going to be another big year,” said Lindsay Gaunt, director of cruise development. “We’re expecting 260 cruise ship calls and around 700,000 passengers.”

ALSO READ: Ogden Point dock expansion delayed but on budget

Along with the passengers will be an additional 280,000 crew members, hailing in the busiest year so far.

This year Victoria will also see the largest ship to visit the pier, the Ovation of the Seas, on May 12, though Gaunt said it was a close call whether the ship could arrive or not.

The GVHA had planned on building an extended dolphin pier at Pier B to accommodate the size of the ship, but in December a key piece of steel for the project tumbled off a cargo ship and into the ocean.

READ MORE: Piece for pier extension at Ogden Point Cruise Terminal lost at sea

“So, we’re circling back and will have that in for the 2020 season, and in the meantime, the Ovation will dock at Pier A South,” Gaunt said.

While Tuesday was the first day, the season will steadily pick up until the regular schedule begins on May 2.

For the full schedule, go victoriacruise.ca.

nicole.crescenzi@vicnews.com


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The first cruise ship of the season – the Celebrity Eclipse – docked in Victoria on April 16. (Arnold Lim/News Staff)

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