© Guardian photo
Three cruise ships stopped by Charlottetown on Oct. 9: The Norwegian Dawn, The Emerald Princess and The Brilliance of the Seas. The number of cruise ship visits to P.E.I. in August 2013 were double what they were in the same month last year.
A steady flow of cruise ships and heavier than normal Confederation Bridge traffic contributed to a strong tourism performance on P.E.I. in August.
Tourism Minister Robert Henderson says figures released today show tourism performed well in the province for that month.
“Our total overnight stays are very close to what they were last August, and last August was one of the best we’ve had in the last five years, so I am happy to see that we didn’t regress, but actually maintained that strength,’’ Henderson said in a statement.
All told, adds the tourism minister, overnight stays are still up 2.3 per cent on the year and many operators are saying September was the best in years.
“So I’m very optimistic about the success of this season,’’ says Henderson.
Room nights sold was slightly ahead of last August, while site nights sold at local campgrounds were down 1.2 per cent.
Traffic at the Confederation Bridge was up 3.8 per cent, while the Charlottetown Airport and Northumberland Ferries reported modest increases in traffic.
There were twice as many cruise shop visits this Augusts as there were in August 2012. Motor coach visits were up just over 42 per cent.
Non-member golf rounds were down 5.2 per cent while museums saw modest to large increases in visitation.
“Last August was one of the best months the Island has seen in terms of weather in the last 20 years, so it’s not surprising to see a slight drop in site nights sold at campgrounds and in golf rounds played, and a slight increase in room nights sold this August,’’ says Henderson.
“And with the tremendous success of this year’s Fall Flavours Festival, there is lots of room for optimism about the overall success of the industry in 2013. I very much look forward to seeing our September numbers.’’