Cruise Terminal

Port of Newcastle supports the Hunter's tourism sector by berthing cruise ships in port and coordinating the many wonderful volunteers dedicated to welcoming visitors to our city.
Cruise ships are currently accommodated at the Channel Berth. Following a mooring bollards upgrade, this berth can accommodate ships up to 320 metres in length with capacity for up to 3,900 passengers. The $800,000 upgrade was jointly funded by the NSW Government and the Australian Government.


Where are cruise ships accommodated?
Visiting cruise ships are positioned at the Channel Berth, within the Port's Carrington Precinct.

Why do cruise ships go to the Channel Berth?
The Channel Berth was commissioned as the Port's cruise berth in 2010, recognising that cruise ships were growing larger and needed a deep water berth that was easy to access, with plenty of land available for coach parking. It can handle vessels up to 320 metres in length, such as the 317 metre long Celebrity Solstice, the longest ship to visit the Port. 

More than 30 coaches can park at the Channel Berth, which enables passengers to quickly transit from the ship to attractions across the Hunter region and by shuttle to the Foreshore of our vibrant City. 

Click here to learn more about the evolution of cruise ships visiting Newcastle.

Why don't cruise ships berth on the Newcastle side of the harbour?

The Newcastle side of the harbour is outside the existing customs and security regulated boundary and currently does not have the required marine or landside infrastructure. 

When will I be able to start and finish my cruise in Newcastle?
Cruise ship itineraries are made with long lead times and cruise ship operators have their own business factors to consider in the development of their future programs. 

Port of Newcastle has consulted with cruise ship operators regarding its facilities in Newcastle. The advice received is that the sector needs a stronger ecosystem, including regular international flights, providoring businesses, ship refuelling and other support services, in order for cruise ships to be based here.

What happened to the Newcastle Cruise Terminal project?
The NSW Government allocated $12.7 million in 2016 to build a new cruise terminal in Newcastle. It was announced in April 2019 that this Infrastructure NSW funding was no longer available. 

Why was the funding withdrawn?
The funding withdrawal is a matter for the NSW Government. Port of Newcastle has sought to be good stewards of the funding available and manage the project within the budget provided and to align with industry feedback. 

Why was the original terminal scope changed?
To align with the funding available, a new design was developed in consultation with the cruise industry in late 2018 and early 2019. The facility was to focus on better servicing the existing market, which is transit calls. The facility was designed to be expanded later should additional funding be made available in response to growth in the industry's needs, including demand for homeporting. 

Why wasn't it built earlier?
We share the community's disappointment that the terminal was not completed in 2018 as planned, however we consider it more important to get the design right. 

The cruise market has further evolved since the original announcement. Our goal was always to facilitate the delivery of a project that met the cruise industry's current needs and best positioned the Hunter's tourism industry to continue to grow into the future. 

The Port Master Plan identified the development of the Newcastle Cruise Terminal as a key strategic development opportunity for the Port - why isn't it proceeding?
No government funding is available for the project. Port of Newcastle continues to support the Hunter's tourism sector by berthing cruise ships in port and facilitating transit visits for more than 27,000 passengers each year.


Contact Port of Newcastle 4908 8200 or email