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Rhapsody of the Seas docks in Ayia Napa Marina

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Vision-class Cruise ship Rhapsody of the Seas, of the Royal Caribbean group, with 3,000 onboard, docked at Ayia Napa Marina.

The passengers were transported Thursday by buses to Ayia Napa, Protaras, Larnaca and the Avgorou Botanical Garden. Some chose to stay in the marina of the popular tourist resort.

The ship is 297 meters long and has 12 decks. It carried 2,100 passengers and 800 staff.

A small ceremonial event took place at the marina attended by its director Costas Fitiris, the Mayor of Agia Napa, Christos Zannettos.

A commemorative plaque was awarded to the crew officers, and gift bags were given with olive oil produced by olive trees in the area.

Deputy Ministers of Shipping and Tourism arrived later in the afternoon because of the Cabinet meeting in Nicosia.

It is the second time the ship has visited this year, and three more cruise liners are expected.

Gary Waugh, one of the senior officers on the ship, said, “They are incredibly grateful for the hospitality that the marina, the mayor and his team and everyone have provided them.

He added that coming to Ayia Napa is an exceptional experience.

“This is the second time we have visited the marina, which is an outstanding project.

“We wish everybody here great success, and we look forward to returning. I believe we will return in October to see you all again”.

Fitiris expressed his pleasure for the ship returning to the marina, noting that this shows efforts made collectively by the Marina, the Municipality of Ayia Napa, and the government paid off.

He hoped they would have more cruise ships in the coming years.

Ayia Napa Mayor Christos Zannettou said that cruise tourism is a sector that needs to be supported.