Taino Bay Port in Puerto Plata opened operations today with the arrival of the MSC Seashore, a modern EVO class cruise ship with 1,700 passengers and capacity for 4,540 plus crew. The ship was built for MSC Cruises in Italy, and arrived on December 15th, 2021 at 8:00am to host the inaugural ceremony with the Dominican Republic President Luis R. Abinader.
In the new Taino Bay, cruise passengers will arrive at an exciting destination with elements related to the pre-Columbian Taino culture, as well as an ecological park, water slides, encounters with wildlife, restaurants, shops and other entertainment. From there they will have direct access to the historic center of Puerto Plata, with its colorful Victorian-style houses and buildings.
MSC Seashore, On Video
Taino Bay Port Details
In its first stage, Taino Bay will have a dock large enough to handle two Oasis size ships. A 20-acre / 8.4-hectare onshore facility divided into several areas:
- Taino Village with a theme based on the culture of the pre-Columbian Taino people.
- Monkey Jungle will be an interactive ecological park with Capuchin monkeys, a botanical garden, an aviary, a reptile island, a marine habitat and a sustainability center.
- Fort Cibao will be a theme park with water slides, roller coasters, children’s and VIP areas, and swimming with rays and cat sharks.
- Bucanneers Village with shops, bars, restaurants, squares for live entertainment and a museum.
- Fort San Felipe, a historic 14th-century Spanish fortress overlooking the bay, commissioned by King Phillip II of Spain in 1564, and full of historic significance.
- Puerto Plata Historic District, within walking distance to the port, and full of landmarks, restaurants, plazas, museums, shopping areas and entertainment.
- Zip Line – A multi-stage Zip Line that will surround the entire facility.
Taino Bay will replace the old Puerto Plata cargo port, placing cruise passengers a few steps away from the historical district that includes Fort San Felipe, an important historical site, and the colonial heart of Puerto Plata where an area of 16 blocks will be undergoing major renovations and improvements from the government.
That area includes dozens of gift shops, antique shops, and landmarks such as the Paseo Dona Blanca, Central Park, San Felipe Cathedral, The Gregorio Luperon museum, the Amber Gallery, Umbrella street, The Amber Museum, Historic Fire Department and many more places where cruise passengers will be toured.
Grupo ITM from México invested $80 million into the first stage of the Taino Bay development, which includes the dock and two-berth dock facilities. Some dredging was required to bring the shipping channel and basin depth to 11.5 meters / 38 feet, and a former power station and fishing pier will be removed.
The existing loading dock will be expanded to 400 meters / 1,312 feet, to allow for a couple of Oasis-size ships alongside. In the second stage, an additional 300 meters / 984 feet extension is planned so that three Oasis-sized ships can call simultaneously.
To create Taino Bay, Puerto Plata’s former cargo pier was extended to handle two Oasis-size ships and one smaller vessel. Its first phase of upland development includes a welcome area, transport hub, retail, beach club, food and beverage outlets, entertainment and continuous free trolley service to Puerto Plata’s colonial center.
The new dock at Taino Bay has three docking positions and a passenger reception center with a capacity to accommodate about 14,000 cruise passengers simultaneously. This terminal will generate 1,500 direct jobs and 3,500 indirect jobs.
The second arrival to the port on December 17th was the gorgeous, 333 meter long Norwegian Encore, a Breakaway Plus class ship with 4,200 passenger berths, built for and operated by Norwegian Cruise Line. Other ships scheduled to arrive in the first month of operation are the Celebrity Millennium, Scarlet Lady, and Celebrity Reflexion.
On Video: Norwegian Encore
President Luis Abinader informed that the country will be receiving the most important international cruise companies such as: Royal Caribbean Cruises, Virgin Voyages, MSC Cruises, Norwegian Cruise Line, TUI Cruises, Celebrity Cruises and Regent Seven Seas Cruises. He also indicated that the projection for the year 2022 is 750 thousand visitors, a figure that he considered could increase according to the actual rhythm. See the cruise ship schedule in the Taino Bay Port Arrivals page.
On Video: Scarlet Lady
The third arrival to Taino Bay was the Scarlet Lady from Virgin Cruises, a gorgeous ship that carried over 2,000 tourists. The same day Puerto Plata welcomed over 7,000 tourists from two other ships that docked at the Amber Cove port from Carnival Cruises. It was a glorious day to see the city handling this many tourists in a very professional way.
TAINO BAY PORT PUERTO PLATA
Avenida Antigua Via Ferrea, Muelle Turistico
Puerto Plata 57000