Tourists depart Viking cruise ship Polaris to explore the Twin Ports
Tourists depart the Viking cruise ship Saturday afternoon where they go to go out and explore the Twin ports. Duluth’s newfound status as a turn-around destination for cruise ships is bringing people all over the world. The Viking cruise ship Polaris docked in Duluth’s harbor, concluding a 14-day voyage from Toronto.
Tricia Hobbs, the Senior Economic Developer of Duluth, said the hundreds of people will be visiting the Twin Ports, will bring more profits to local businesses. “We’re welcoming some people who are beginning their vacation on the Great Lakes. And so that means hotel night stays. That means visits to attractions. That means dining at our local restaurants. We also know that a very significant number of them are flying into the airport.” Hobbs said. “From what I understand, nearly all the folks who are choosing to travel by plane. And so we’re really happy for our partners at the Dulles International Airport to be able to help us with that and welcome folks in that way.”
According to a 2021 analysis by the University of Minnesota Duluth, the tourists depart the Viking cruise ships is extremely lucrative for Duluth. The analysis estimates just a handful of stops by cruise ships each season could generate hundreds-of-thousands, if not millions in additional tourism dollars every year. And the turn-arounds could generate several times that, because many cruise passengers will arrive in Duluth a day before they leave, or choose to remain in Duluth after they disembark.