The Jakarta Post
A small wooden boat owned by local fishermen of Komodo hamlet sails by, as the Japanese Asuka cruise ship docked at Komodo Island can be seen in the background on Feb. 5. (JP/Markus Makur)
At least 24 cruise ships are set to dock in Lembar Port in Lombok, West Nusa Tenggara (NTB), throughout 2017, quite an increase compared to last year with 18 ships.
"For this year, 24 cruise ships have been confirmed to visit Lombok via Lembar Port. The passengers are expected to enjoy a one-day trip in several Lombok destinations," NTB Tourism Agency head Lalu Mohammad Faizal told The Jakarta Post on Friday in Mataram.
Lalu said the ships that largely originated from European countries and Singapore generally accommodated 3000 to 5000 passengers, which would mean the potential number of foreign tourist arrivals could reach more than 50,000 visitors.
Art and cultural performances have been said will entertain the tourists while visiting the destination. "Visitors will be greeted with traditional musical dances that we provide at the NTB National Museum and NTB Cultural Park in Mataram," said Lalu.
(Read also: Foreign cruise ships flock to Komodo Island)
State port operator PT Pelabuhan Indonesia (Pelindo) II's Lembar Port general manager Baharuddin said that Volendam cruise ship from the Netherlands had arrived at the port on Tuesday carrying a total of 1,968 passengers and crew.
"The ship docked in Lembar Port from Tuesday morning until night," he said, adding that the company had welcomed the visitors with Gendang Beleg traditional music performances and local dances.
"Some visitors joined tours provided by travel agents, some others shopped on their own by taxi or charter vehicles," said Baharuddin. Some of the popular routes visited by the tourists include Sekotong, Kuta Beach in Central Lombok, Mataram Mall, Senggigi, Sukarare weaving art center, Gili Nangu, Gili Kedis and Gili Sudak.
Baharuddin added that cruise ships that visited Lombok usually passed through Komodo Island, Flores, Lombok and then headed to Bali. (kes)
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