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PH clinches first ‘Asia’s Best Cruise Destination’ award

By Yoniel Acebuche Published Oct 16, 2023 4:47 pm

The Philippines bagged its first-ever “Asia’s Best Cruise Destination” award from the prestigious World Cruise Awards. 

On Monday, October 16, the Department of Tourism (DOT) announced the news on its social media pages saying that this milestone builds the country’s reputation as an "emerging powerhouse in the global cruise and tourism sector." 

"This first-time recognition as Asia's Best Cruise Destinations 2023 is a big win for Philippine tourism as it reflects a resounding global preference for our island destinations," said Tourism Secretary Christina Garcia Frasco. 

"We extend our sincere appreciation to all our tourism stakeholders for their hard work and collaboration. The shared tourism governance between government and the private sector espoused by the Marcos Administration is bearing fruit," she added. 

The tourism chief continued, "We are committed to maintain and enhance the Philippines' standing as an outstanding cruise destination in Asia and the world."

The awarding ceremony was held in Dubai on Sunday, October 15.

Other Asian countries that vied for the award include India, Japan, Singapore, South Korea, Sri Lanka, Taiwan, Thailand, and Vietnam.

The World Cruise Awards is an annual program that celebrates excellence in the cruise industry. It recognizes outstanding contributions to the cruise industry and is a highly anticipated event for cruise professionals, media, and consumers worldwide.

Moreover, it is affiliated with the renowned World Travel Awards, which hailed the Philippines as “Asia’s Leading Dive Destination” for the fifth consecutive year last September.

According to DOT, the Philippines is projected to have 128 ports of call or cruise calls in 2023 across 33 destinations across the country. These cruise ships are expected to bring in more than 101,000 passengers and some 50,000 in estimated crew.

These include the Seaborne Encore, Silver Shadow, MSC Poesia, Queen Elizabeth, Norwegian Jewel, Coral Adventure, MS Seven Seas Explorer, MS Star Breeze, Silver Whisper, Oceania Cruises, Aidabella, and the Blue Dream Cruise which has made its maiden voyage to the Philippines this month.

"We are grateful that the country's potential to offer exceptional cruise experiences is now acknowledge on a global scale," Frasco added. 

Recently, Boracay and Siargao were among the Condé Nast Traveler (CNT) Top 10 Readers’ Choice Awards for the best islands in Asia. This marks the "biggest representation for any country on the list." 

Boracay landed on the third spot while Siargao wrapped up the Top 10 at the 10th spot, making a return to the list after the surfing destination suffered from the destruction brought by Typhoon Odette.

Meanwhile, El Nido Resorts was cited as the top of the Best Resorts in the Philippines, second among the Best Resorts in Asia, and No. 39 among the Best Resorts in the World. This is the eighth time that El Nido Resorts has been recognized in the latter two categories.