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Black Watch comes calling on a Christmas cruise at Portsmouth International Port

22 December 2016

The last cruise ship call of 2016 at Portsmouth International Port sees Fred. Olsen’s stylish cruise ship ‘Black Watch’ arrives two days before Christmas on an around Britain “Tinsel & Hogmanay” tour.

Six hundred passengers will be calling at the Great Waterfront City for the first stop on an eleven night holiday. The Christmas cruise starts in London and takes guests right around the coastline of Great Britain and Ireland, with a New Year’s Eve stop in Edinburgh.

Although Fred. Olsen have called many times at Portsmouth International Port, with the Boudicca and Braemar, it is great to welcome Boudicca’s sister ship, Black Watch for her second call at Portsmouth.

Black Watch docks early in the morning on Friday 23 December and hundreds of passengers will explore the Historic Dockyard, visit the Spinnaker Tower, wander the atmospheric streets of Old Portsmouth, and enjoy some last minute Christmas shopping at Gunwharf Quays.

Rupert Taylor, Harbour Master at Portsmouth International Port, said, “It will be a real Christmas treat to see Black Watch slip into the harbour past the Spinnaker Tower on Friday. I’m delighted that Fred. Olsen is bringing this beautiful vessel to Portsmouth International Port for her second visit, and know all on board will have the best possible start to their festive cruise with a full day exploring our wonderful city.”

Black Watch leaves Portsmouth International Port late on Friday 23 December bound for Plymouth in Devon. Christmas Day will be spent at sea, before stopping in Cobh, near Cork in Ireland. The next cruise call sees passengers docking in Dublin. A short leg along the Irish coast takes them to Belfast, before a two day passage around Scotland to Leith Port in Edinburgh. Once the New Year’s Eve festivities are over a two day journey down the East Coast brings passengers back to London.

Fred. Olsen has been bringing passengers to Portsmouth since 2009. Portsmouth International Port works with a variety of well-known cruise operators and has become an increasingly popular “port of call”. Passengers are able to step off the gangway and within minutes find themselves experiencing world class tourist attractions, including HMS Victory and the Mary Rose Museum.

The first cruise call of 2017 is scheduled for 25 February, when Swan Hellenic’s Minerva returns for the start of the spring and summer season. The diary for next year is looking healthy with 47 ships booked to arrive, depart or visit during the year, a 24% increase on 2016.

For further information please contact Emma Gaisford/Julie Blackwell on 01256 631696 or email julie.blackwell@purple-agency.com or emma.gaisford@purple-agency.com