Norwegian Spirit’s maiden arrival marks a significant milestone for the Australian cruise industry’s comeback, as well as the chance for Australian cruisers to experience NCL’s unique Freestyle Cruising concept from their doorstep, with a choice of eight sailings between December 2022 and March 2023 from Sydney and Auckland.NCL media release
SYDNEY WELCOMES NORWEGIAN SPIRIT
Norwegian Cruise Line has made its long-awaited return to Australian waters after a three year-year absence prompted by the pandemic.
Norwegian Spirit – the vessel that recently received a $100 million bow-to-stern renovation, the “most expensive and extensive ever undertaken by NCL” – sailed into spectacular Sydney Harbour four days before Christmas 2022 for the very first time with guests from over 20 nationalities on board.
NCL President and CEO Harry Sommer, who is in Sydney to greet the ship, says the company was delighted to be returning to Australia afterCOVID-19 suspended cruising and again be contributing to an industry that added $5 billion to the Australian economy annually before the 2020 shutdown.
“Australia and New Zealand are incredibly important markets for us, both as a source market and a destination, and we are committed to this region for the long term,” he says.
“I’m thrilled to be here in person to celebrate our return to Australia after a three-year hiatus, and to join the festivities as Norwegian Spirit spends an extended overnight visit in Sydney before she sets sail on her Christmas cruise tomorrow.”
The vessel will explore destinations like New Zealand’s Napier and Fiordland National Park, as well as Melbourne and ports around Tasmania while in Australian waters this summer before returning in December 2023 for a second home-porting season from Sydney and Auckland.