JEJU (Yonhap) -- The largest luxury cruise ship to arrive in South Korea docked in the port of Jeju Saturday as the resort island moves to build itself into one of the leading tourist destinations in Northeast Asia.
The Voyager of the Seas cruise liner arrived early in the morning at Jeju Port to the fanfare of local authorities and traditional performances.
Jeju prepared special garlands and plaques for the passengers who arrived on the ship that weighs 137,276 gross tons, is 311 meters long, has a maximum width of 47.55 meters and stands 63 meters tall. The ship operated by Royal Caribbean International, based in the Bahamas, is the first super-large cruise ship to dock in the country. It can carry 3,400 passengers and has a crew of 1,181.
The provincial government hopes that the arrival of the cruise ship will be followed with other visits, which could help transform the island into a international resort. At present, the island off South Korea's southeastern coast is a favorite attraction for Chinese and Japanese tourists, although there has been a steady increase of people from other countries.
Jeju Governor Woo Keun-min, who was present to welcome the ship, said the arrival of the cruise ship opened a new chapter for the province. He said that once the naval based in the southern part of the island is completed in two years, 150,000 ton ships will be able to berth easily to disembark tourists.
The naval base in Gangjeong is being designed so it can be used by both the navy and civilians.