As a “hidden gem,” the Finnish city of Turku is the “perfect complement to many capitals on a Baltic cruise itinerary,” said Business Developer Cruise & Ferry at Port of Turku, Marita Anstead.
According to Anstead, the Port of Turku was among the first ports to introduce environmental vessel concessions. The port now applies charges in which the discount is based on the international Clean Shipping Index. The index takes into account the nitrogen, sulfur and carbon dioxide emissions of vessels as well as chemicals, water waste and particle emissions.
“In addition, we participate in the implementation of a carbon-neutral Turku by 2029, when the city celebrates its 800th anniversary,” Anstead said.
“Beginning of 2022, Viking Line’s new cruise ferry vessel m/s Viking Glory will start operating on the Turku-Stockholm route. It will be one of the most climate-smart passenger vessels in the world,” she added.
The port area is facing intensive development in the future, according to Anstead.
“The Port of Turku is investing in a new joint terminal to replace the two existing ones run by cruise ferry companies Tallink Silja and Viking Line. The construction of the new 12,000 m2 Ferry Terminal Turku will commence in 2023 and it will be ready to operate in December 2025,” she said.
The facilities will also be available for international cruise vessels calling in Turku. The development plan is carried out in close cooperation with the shipping companies and the city of Turku.
“A new quay will be built close to the terminal. Once completed the port area will become a unique maritime district where tourism and cargo transports, as well as business operations and residence, will evolve side by side. It will have a great impact on the future of Turku and strengthen Turku’s image as an active, international and vital city,” noted Anstead.
But it is not only the port area itself that is getting renovated. The surroundings of Turku Castle and the port area will be facing major changes, too.
“Located next to the Port, the Linnanniemi district will be built into a center of urban culture year-round with a strong presence of the sea and history. The status of the medieval Turku Castle will be highlighted in the cityscape to emphasize its historical significance and functional role. Other key roles in the development of the area will be played by the Forum Marinum Maritime Center as well as the Museum of History and the Future (to be built in the area at a later date),” said Anstead. “(This) will also benefit future cruise business in Turku.”