First Cruise Ship of the Season Arrives in Victoria

Norwegian Bliss received with Lək̓ʷəŋən welcome ceremony to the Breakwater District

Lək̓ʷəŋən Traditional Territory/VICTORIA, BC, April 3, 2024 –The Greater Victoria Harbour Authority (GVHA) welcomed the first cruise ship of the season, the Norwegian Bliss, which arrived at the Breakwater District at Ogden Point in Victoria on April 3.

Chief Jerome Thomas of Xʷsepsəm Nation granted permission to the ship’s crew and passengers to come ashore. Traditionally, visiting communities entering the harbour by canoe sought the Nation’s permission before entering the territory. Following Chief Jerome Thomas, the Lək̓ʷəŋən Traditional dancers welcomed the passengers. “I am pleased to be here today to welcome the Norwegian Bliss to the traditional and unceded territory of the Lək̓ʷəŋən People. I have had the opportunity recently to participate in a cruise symposium, and I’m excited for future opportunities for our members in this industry,” said Chief Councillor Jerome Thomas.

At 333 meters and with room for 4,004 passengers, the Norwegian Bliss will berth at the Breakwater District port for about 10 hours, an opportunity for cruise guests to visit the Region’s attractions and explore local shops and cuisine.

“We join businesses and local citizens in welcoming the world to Victoria and to experience its natural beauty and the rich Lək̓ʷəŋən culture,” said Robert Lewis-Manning, CEO of GVHA. “The cruise industry’s economic benefit to the region continues to grow and we are encouraged by recent instances of cruise lines choosing Victoria not only as a tourist destination but as a place to conduct maintenance and repair work.”

“I welcome the Norwegian Bliss and all the ships, their staff and passengers who will visit our beautiful City of Gardens this year,” said City of Victoria Mayor Marianne Alto. “We’re delighted to share our vibrant downtown and hospitality and invite them to explore Victoria’s downtown shops, dining experiences, historic landmarks and scenic waterfront during their visits.”

The GVHA anticipates 315 ship calls and 910,000 visitors this cruise season. Passenger numbers are estimated to remain consistent with the previous season. Two cruise ships will make their inaugural call to Victoria this summer: Explora I on April 17 and Celebrity Edge on May 23.

More information about the cruise season is available on GVHA’s website at


About the Greater Victoria Harbour Authority
The Greater Victoria Harbour Authority is a community-based, not-for-profit organization that is committed to the stewardship and sustainable growth of Victoria’s dynamic working harbour. GVHA owns and operates several high-profile community amenities, including the Ogden Point Breakwater, Inner Harbour lower causeway, Fisherman’s Wharf and Ship Point Pier. GVHA is certified as a Canadian Council for Aboriginal Business Silver Member. Silver members recognize the value of working with Indigenous communities and showing outcomes that have made a difference, including investment in communities, people, employment programs and business partnerships.