In 2023, four cruise ships brought over 4,000 passengers to Duluth, contributing nearly $600,000 in direct spending to the city. This spending supported a variety of businesses, including shops, restaurants, transportation providers, tour operators, and small businesses in Duluth and other Great Lakes ports.
Cruise the Great Lakes served as a platform for various stakeholders to collaborate towards common goals. The organization’s commitment to promoting unique cruising experiences available in the region led to an increase in the growing popularity of Great Lakes cruises as a destination. Nearly 25,000 passengers made 800 visits to Great Lakes ports, representing an over 20% increase from the previous year.
Dan Hartman, Executive Director of the Duluth Entertainment Convention Center expressed enthusiasm about the influx of visitors and how many of them would not have come to Duluth otherwise but now have discovered its appeal. Anna Tanski, Tourism Director of Cruise the Great Lakes highlighted the importance of collaboration among stakeholders such as states