Students help in giving Port Victoria facelift ahead of cruise season |24 September 2022
As Port Victoria gears up to welcome cruise ships as from October 12, students from various schools are helping the Seychelles Ports Authority (SPA) in giving Port Victoria a facelift.
Over the course of five days, secondary school students are adding a splash of colour and a dose of creative flair to the once bare walls, in the form of murals.
For this season, which is due to last until April/May 2023, a total of 16 vessels are expected, some of which will be making repeated port calls over the season. In total, the SPA is expecting around 40 port calls, said director for Business, Vincent Didon, yesterday morning.
“We decided to organise this activity since our cruise season is set to open soon, and we have created a walkway whereby we want disembarking passengers, those not in vehicles, and even port-users to use this walkway. As it is a new feature, we decided to invite school students to add some colour to the walkway and make it more attractive,” Mr Didon noted.
The walls of the newly built walkway are being decorated and adorned in paintwork in line with cruise, port and maritime thematics.
Reytel Njamasse of Mont Fleuri secondary school is one of the students who partook in the first day of painting yesterday.
“As you can see, our drawings are based on Seychelles. As you can see, I am drawing a turtle, while others are painting pitcher plants, there are different things related to Seychelles. I created my own design,” she said.
Following an 18-month stoppage on cruise ships due to the pandemic, the season officially reopened in mid-November 2021, with Seychelles welcoming vessels with a maximum of 300 passengers for the season.
For this season, Le Ponant will once again be returning, among others who are making regional tours.
As with the 2021-2022 season, certain cruise lines will be operating solely within the Seychelles archipelago, making port calls every eight or ten days to embark and disembark passengers over the season.
“The public health measures are to remain the same as those implemented during the last season, which were quite strict. The incoming vessels already have their strict onboard protocols which are up to a high standard and to the expectations of the Public Health Authority (PHA), and they must maintain these onboard. They are also bound to follow the national measures,” Mr Didon noted.
With berthing at the small port a concern in the past, the SPA’s Operations department has worked on an improved management plan to address the berthing concerns among cargo vessel operators.
Unlike last year’s season, the 300 passengers cap is no longer applicable. Traditionally, the vessels arriving in Port Victoria bring in around 2000 to 2500 passengers.