New member: Figueira da Foz

Thursday, April 18, 2024 - 13:43 by ce-press

Joining the Cruise Europe family, and a newcomer to the sector, is the Port of Figueira da Foz (PFdF), located between Lisbon and Porto in Portugal, both of which have international airports. The city of about 60,000 inhabitants welcomed passengers on three calls last year - two from Swan Hellenic Cruises’ Diana - and is keen to expand the cruise business.
Cruiseships of 140m length and 5.5m depth (without tide) can presently be accommodated on the west side of the general cargo terminal in the west of the port. This position has an exit/entry gate for passengers and is about 300/400m from the City Hall and downtown, according to Joaquim Sotto Maior, port coordinator PFdF. Public transport, bus and taxis are available near the City Hall and, if organised ahead of time, a free city tour bus can be arranged.
An anchorage outside the port is available two miles from the breakwater. However this can be adjusted closer in liaison with the Maritime Authority, explains Maior. From the port entrance to the two tender piers in the marina is about 0.5nm.
There is no specific equipment for baggage handling but this an arrangement that could be put in place if needed. Tourist information can be provided on the quay and also in the upper part of town, where there are coffee shops and toilets. A gangway can be provided if necessary.
Later this year, works are expected to start for deepening the port entrance, navigation channel and piers. The turning basin will be enlarged, demolishing old breakwaters in the south bank.

The quay used for cruiseships will be extended five metres towards the river the pier (alongside the two others) and will have a depth of 9m. Bollards will be added to cater to the larger capacity. “These works are expected to take 18 months and then we will be capable of receiving ships with a maximum draught of 8m and maximum lengths between 140m and 170m,” says Maior.
In addition, the hope is to build a passenger terminal to be operational in 2026, which will house services, such as tourist information, toilets, WiFi, coffee shop, baggage handling, and customs & immigration.
Development of LNG is not scheduled but bunkering by truck could be made possible in the meantime. Low Sulphur Fuel EU rules are already in force. Onshore power supply introduction is not scheduled but it is intended to be operating in the next three or four years, following the works to receive bigger ships, according to Maior.
Shore excursions are mainly going to Coimbra (library) and museums, Conimbriga (Roman archaeological ruins), the Bussaco Forest with a religious and military history, the wine region of Bairrada, the salt pans and the ancient seaside resort of Figueira da Foz itself. There are other possibilities such as Fatima’s Sanctuary. These excursions are mainly tailored by tour operators such as TUI/Intercruises.
New member: Figueira da Foz
Island Sky alongside (c) Port of Figueira da Foz

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