Carnival Australia’s summer cruise season, which is officially underway, is on course to be one of the biggest on record with more than 600 calls to ports around the country.

It also marks the local debut Princess Cruises’ Ruby Princess and Carnival Cruise Line’s Carnival Splendor.

The super season began with the arrival of Princess Cruises’ 3560-guest Majestic Princess which sails into Sydney today after visiting Darwin and Brisbane.

Her arrival will mark the start of 625 calls to 34 different ports around Australia by 19 ships from the seven cruise lines represented by Carnival Australia.

The ship visits are expected to pump around $440 million into communities around Australia through passenger and crew spending, supplies and port charges, with the season set to close on April 29, 2020, when Seabourn Sojourn sails from Sydney.

Carnival Australia President Sture Myrmell said the 2019-20 cruise season would feature an exciting range of ships as well as 50 inaugural port visits around the country for ships across the company’s cruise lines.

Majestic Princess

Image: Nathalie Craig

“This is going to be a summer cruise season to remember, with our cruise lines offering Australian holidaymakers a fantastic range of new itineraries and new ports across 19 great ships.”

Carnival Australia President Sture Myrmell

“In fact the number of local port visits by our ships has grown by more than 50 per cent compared to the summer season 10 years ago, underlining not only the growing popularity of cruising but also how much cruising has become part of the tourism fabric of our nation,” he explained.

Australia’s homegrown cruise line P&O Cruises will continue to reach holidaymakers around the country, with its three ships making more than 200 visits to local ports including 11 maiden ship visits.

Among the inaugural calls are Pacific Aria’s first visits to Melbourne (February 9, 2020), Hobart (February 11) and Adelaide (March 11).

Other inaugural ship and cruise line visits over the summer include Carnival Cruise Line’s first call to Adelaide (Carnival Spirit February 29, 2020); Cunard’s first call to Esperance in Western Australia, (Queen Elizabeth on December 9, 2020); Seabourn’s first call to Portland (Seabourn Encore on March 14, 2020) and Holland America’s first calls to Moreton Island (Maasdam on December 1, 2019); Portland (Maasdam on January 2, 2020) and Phillip Island (Maasdam on January 3, 2020).