Scotland’s Greenock Records Record Cruises

Greenock Busiest Cruise Year 100 vessels

Published Mar 23, 2023 3:52 PM by The Maritime Executive

A small town on the River Clyde near Glasgow seems an unlikely location for a boom in cruise liners crammed with holidaymakers looking to sample the best of Scotland’s heritage, with its world-famous castles, whisky, and stunning scenery.

But that is exactly what is happening in Greenock, which is set to have its busiest year ever, with nearly 100 vessels and 150,000 passengers expected to pass through the port in 2023. The 25% increase on last year is partly thanks to a new dedicated pontoon aimed at maximizing the region’s potential as a gateway to Scotland and all it has to offer.

Situated on Scotland’s west coast, Greenock offers easy access to the country’s most sought-after scenery, culture, and venues – including the five-star Cameron House on the banks of Loch Lomond and Kimpton Blythswood Square Hotel in Glasgow city center.

The terminal’s location is perfectly positioned for visitors looking to explore the picturesque Scottish countryside, including Loch Lomond and the Trossachs National Park and the historical village of Balloch, as well as being just a short journey away from some of the country’s top tourist attractions.

Meanwhile, those looking for a more urban taste of Scottish life can flock to the nearby city of Glasgow, the country’s biggest and busiest metropolitan area.

Voted the friendliest city in the UK last year, Glasgow boasts a menagerie of shops, restaurants, bars and tourist attractions, allowing guests to enjoy the characterful amenities while immersing themselves fully in Scottish culture.

Passengers will enjoy these and many other unique excursions, such as visiting the famous Jacobite Steam Train, also known as Harry Potter’s Howarts’ Express. 

Some of the industry’s most sumptuous vessels are set to dock on the Clyde this year, more great news for international tourists who have placed Scotland firmly on their travel bucket lists.

The ultra-luxury MSC Virtuosa, which is 331 meters long and can carry more than 6000 passengers, will dock at the terminal for the first time during the busy cruising season in 2023. It is one of the two largest ships in MSC Cruises’ fleet and boasts five pools, a futuristic entertainment space, a yacht club, a full-service spa and a kids club, as well as its own theatre, aquapark and casino for passengers to use on board at their leisure.

The flurry in cruise liner activity comes ahead of the completion of a £20million cruise ship visitor center at the Scottish site, with work due to finish later this year. 

The dedicated center will feature a museum paying tribute to the renowned late artist George Wyllie, a restaurant and roof terrace with stunning views of the River Clyde and a purpose-built arrivals and departure hall.

Jim McSporran, Clydeport Port Director at Peel Ports said: “We’re extremely proud to announce a record cruise year for Greenock Ocean Terminal, with much of our business coming from luxury cruise liners serving international travelers.

“It’s no surprise that people want to visit Scotland. With its bustling cities, picturesque countryside, and even perfectly white sandy beaches, the country does have something for everyone. It’s a hidden gem for international travelers.

“And what better way to arrive than in one of the many magnificent cruise liners gracing Greenock with their presence this year? We can’t wait to welcome our international visitors in style and look forward to giving them a famous Scottish welcome when they arrive.”
About Peel Ports Group 

Peel Ports Group is one the UK’s largest port operators, owning and operating six of the UK’s most important ports (Liverpool, Heysham, Manchester Ship Canal, Medway (Sheerness / Chatham), Clydeport and Great Yarmouth). It also operates a container terminal in Dublin and owns BG Freight Line, which provides short sea container services between the UK, Ireland and mainland Europe and Peel Ports Logistics, one of the UK’s leading shipping and freight forwarders.  
Peel Ports handles approximately 70 million tonnes of cargo every year. 14% of the total UK major ports traffic flows through ports operated by the Group, Headquartered in Liverpool, it employs around 2,000 staff. 


The products and services herein described in this press release are not endorsed by The Maritime Executive.