Solomon Islands welcomes MS Regatta in Honiara today.

MS Regatta is the second Cruise Vessel to visit Honiara after almost 3 years of no Cruise Ship visits.

The ship, carrying 196 passengers and 380 crews was in Fiji before visiting Honiara. The ship will be heading to Australia from Honiara later this evening.

Stakeholders say they are delighted to welcome cruise guests and hopes to see more cruise visits in the near future.

Prior to the pandemic, Solomon Islands recorded well over 4,400 visitors in 2020, a lot less than the 28,900 visitor numbers recorded in 2019.

The South Pacific Tourism Organization (SPTO) says tourist numbers, under normal circumstances, would be expected to be about 2 million across the region.

However, in 2019 that number fell to 391,000, which is about an 82% decrease. Tourist arrivals from cruise ships have also fallen by 73%.