ACCORDING to data from the state ports, Alicante port has received 87 per cent more cruise visitors than for the same period in 2014, a total of 35,247 visitors compared to 18,838 passengers in 2014, but much work is still to be done.
Although the growth statistic is impressive and puts Alicante at the top of the list in terms of percentage growth, the figures are misleading. Competitor ports including Valencia and Cartagena, who experienced a 7 and 9 per cent growth respectively receive many more passengers annually with Valencia taking in 87,631 and Cartagena 218,419.
The figures indicate that Alicante is still at the bottom of the rung of the business, and the figures have not met with the port authority estimates that predicted some 90,000 cruise passengers would be arriving in Alicante by the end of 2015.
Overall, Alicante is just a drop in the ocean for the cruise traffic in Spain, who up until August had already received over 5.14 million cruise passengers, also an increase of 11.53 per cent on the previous year.
The ports of Barcelona, Balearic Islands, Las Palmas, Tenerife and Cadiz Bay were the main areas of attraction, which between them account for over 83 per cent of cruise traffic.