Norwegian Cruise Line has officially begun service from a new US homeport as Norwegian Sky departed Baltimore, Maryland on September 1, 2023.
The ship will offer several iconic autumn voyages showcasing the best of New England and Canada, and later in the winter, Norwegian Sun will also homeport from Baltimore for a series of Bermuda and Caribbean sailings.
Norwegian Cruise Line Sets Sail From Baltimore
The Sun class Norwegian Sky departed from Port of Baltimore for the first time on Friday, September 1, 2023, marking the first time the cruise line has sailed from Maryland as a homeport and opening new itinerary options for eager travelers.
The occasion was highlighted by a ceremonial ribbon cutting, and Maryland Port Administration’s Interim Acting Executive Director Brian Miller and Deputy Director of Business Development Cynthia Burman presented Captain Konstantinos Fafalios with an engraved Port of Baltimore ship’s wheel.
Such mementos – which may be plaques, sculptures, artwork, or other designs – are often displayed onboard ships and commemorate the various ports they visit or sail from.
This first Norwegian Sky cruise from Baltimore is a 10-night Canada & New England sailing with port visits to Oak Bluffs and Boston in Massachusetts; Bar Harbor, Maine; Halifax and Sydney in Nova Scotia; Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island; and Saguenay, Quebec before the cruise ends in Quebec City, Quebec on Monday, September 11.
Norwegian Sky will then return to Baltimore in reverse order with slightly different ports of call, offering even more variety if guests choose to enjoy back-to-back sailings.
In total, the ship will offer four of these autumn sailings before leaving Baltimore in mid-October, but the very next month, Norwegian Sun will arrive to offer a series of Bermuda and Caribbean cruises through the end of December.
“Today marks a history-making moment for Norwegian Cruise Line, as we sail from the vibrant city of Baltimore for the first time,” said David J. Herrera, president of Norwegian Cruise Line.
“Our voyages from the Port of Baltimore offer guests the best that cruising on the East Coast has to offer, with a convenient homeport option that allows them to experience both the breathtaking fall foliage of Canada and New England and warm weather winter escapes in Bermuda and the Caribbean.”
Norwegian Sky and Norwegian Sun are the smallest ships in Norwegian Cruise Line’s fleet at 77,104 and 78,309 gross tons, respectively. This does give the ships an advantage of greater intimacy and smaller crowds, however, as they both host fewer than 2,000 guests per voyage.
The ships’ smaller size also allows them to showcase more intimate ports of call and enjoy some destinations that large ship are unable to visit.
Cruise Growth in Baltimore
Cruise travel is rapidly growing from the Port of Baltimore, not only offering great travel opportunities to millions of potential passengers, but also offering significant contributions to the local economy. Located right off Interstate 95, the port is convenient to more than 40 million people within a 6-hour drive.
“We’re very happy to have Norwegian, one of the top cruise lines in the world, sailing from the Port of Baltimore,” said Miller. “Our cruise terminal’s unique location allows for easy access for cruise passengers from many Eastern and Midwestern states.”
“Norwegian is one of the top cruise lines in the world, and they recognize that Maryland’s Port of Baltimore is an amazing partner, offering convenient access and outstanding service,” said Paul J. Wiedefeld, Maryland Transportation Secretary.
Furthermore, guests who travel to Baltimore for a cruise are likely to take extra time before or after their sailing in the vibrant city, exploring the history and culture of Baltimore in fun and unique ways. This brings even more revenue to the city and region overall, particularly as cruise lines are sailing at full capacity and many travelers are booking months in advance to secure coveted itineraries.
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“The arrival of Norwegian Cruise Line heightens the impact of cruising as an economic engine for our state. The industry already generates nearly 400 jobs and $63 million in annual local business revenues,” said Wiedefeld.
In addition to Norwegian Cruise Line, several other lines regularly sail from Baltimore, including Royal Caribbean International and Carnival Cruise Line, as well as the regional American Cruise Line.