Dun Laoghaire hopes to tap into cruise market

South Dublin port hopes to emulate the success of Copenhagen

Dun Laoghaire is hoping to emulate the success of Copenhagen by positioning itself as a destination for cruise ships.

The Danish capital attracts about 500,000 cruise visitors a year and the Dun Laoghaire Cruise Stakeholder Group, which was formed in 2011 to develop a cruise business in the south Dublin port, is hoping achieve similar success.

"The great opportunity for Dun Laoghaire Harbour and Dublin Port is to work collaboratively to emulate the success of Copenhagen in attracting approximately 500,000 cruise visitors per year, which would represent a quadrupling of visitor numbers coming to Dublin Bay in 2015", Gerry Dunne, CEO of the Dun Laoghaire Harbour Company, said.

Already, the group has engaged “in a vigorous marketing campaign”, particularly in the United States, to enable Dun Laoghaire to tap into this growing market.


With just 140 cruise passengers in 2012, Mr Dunne said that the number of cruise bookings has “grown exponentially” since then, and 2015 is expected to be the most successful year ever in terms of attracting cruise passengers to the harbour, with 23 vessels confirmed to dock, bringing a record 66,867 passengers to Dun Laoghaire.

Dun Laoghaire Harbour Company is currently finalising an application to An Bord Pleanala under Strategic Infrastructure Development to build a new € 15m cruise berth facility to cater for the “next generation cruise ships”.

“The development of the cruise business is a key element of the Dun Laoghaire Habour Masterplan published in 2011 and is consistent with the role set out for the Habour in the government’s National Ports Policy, which sees Dun Laoghaire Harbour developing as a marine leisure and tourist destination of international calibre” Mr. Dunne said.

Fiona Reddan

Fiona Reddan

Fiona Reddan is a writer specialising in personal finance and is the Home & Design Editor of The Irish Times