The Baltic Sea region saw a decline in cruise passenger numbers last year as the number of ship calls dropped by 7% on the level in 2009.

Passenger numbers of 3.1 million in 2010 are forecast to rise by 12% or 380,000 this year due to an extended summer season from early April until the end of October.

Revealing details of 2010 ship calls across the 27 destinations in the region last year, the Cruise Baltic network said Copenhagen, St Petersburg, Stockholm, Tallinn and Helsinki were the top five ports. 
Cruise Baltic director Bo Larsen said: “We have reached a level within our region, where growth cannot be expected each year – 2010 was only the third time in a decade that saw a decrease.

“Having said that, we are extremely proud that in 2010 we’ve been able to welcome nothing less than 68 different cruise ships and 3.1million passengers.

“Looking forward, we are getting ready to welcome almost 3.5 million guests in 2011, which will be an all-time high and a number that no-one would have predicted just a few years ago.

“The reason for this is also due to an extended season that will begin early April and finish end of October, which is five weeks longer than the 2010 season.”