Source: data adapted from Cruise Market Watch. Note: does not include river cruises.
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Cruise Passengers Visits, Mediterranean, 2012
The Mediterranean is the world's second largest cruise shipping market, representing over 23% of the annual cruise capacity. It can be broken down into four regions, the Western Med, the Eastern Med and the Adriatic, but the fourth region, the Southern Mediterranean, is sparsely serviced mainly due to political instability (some activity in Tunisia and Egypt). The Western Med represent the main market, but congestion is inciting the consideration of new itineraries in the Eastern med and Black Sea. The adjacency of the Mediterranean to Europe provides the advantage of a large pool of customers with discretionary spending. It is a perennial cruise market with a summer peak season (several itineraries are not serviced in the winter). The Mediterranean offers at the same time seaside resort destinations (e.g. Palma de Mallorca, Mykonos) as well as world class cultural amenities as several cities are museums by themselves (e.g. Venice). The Eastern Med lacks airport capacity and connectivity with limited cruise terminals, except for the Greek Islands which are dominantly serviced from Piraeus with smaller ships.