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Shore Trips and To-Dos Near International Ports

Shore trip is one of the benefits given to seafarers by availing their shore leave if their safety and time allow it. The seafarer can stay in the dry land from few hours up to a few days depending on the ship’s schedule to stay on the port. Generally, ships harbour at a given period especially in big international ports due to traffic and congestion concerns. In instances like these, the chance to avail shore leave is upon the discretion of the captain as the crew are expected to help mount or unmount cargoes before the vessel’s time to dock expires.

 If you are allowed to go on a short shore trip while your vessel is docked on the port, maximize this much-needed break.  We listed some of the famous spots adjacent to international ports that you can visit quickly:

1. Shanghai Port, China

Seafarers may visit The Bund or the Zhongshan Lu located at the west bank of the Huangpujiang River in Shanghai and enjoy the Chinese cuisines. And if the time still permits, the Jade Buddha Temple is also a great place to see located at the Anyuan Road, Jing'an.


2. Busan Port, South Korea

Busan, South Korea’s second largest city, is famous for its beaches, mountains, and temples. Seafarers who will get a chance to tour the city can pay a visit to Trickeye Museum which is located few kilometres away from the port. Busan International Film Festival (BIFF) Square located at Nampo-dong, Jung-gu is also a spot to see and experience its movie theatres, shops and leisure facilities.


3. Jebel Ali Port, Dubai, United Arab Emirates

Some destinations for seafarers near Jebel Ali Port are beach hotels and shopping centers. Do not forget to check and see the world’s famous Burj Al Arab Hotel, the third tallest building in the world. Dubai is also famous for its magnificent man-made islands such as Palm Jumeirah, Deira Island and Palm Jebel Ali which can be seen few stretches away from the port.


4. Rotterdam Port, Netherlands

Rotterdam is Netherland’s second largest city featuring modern shopping hubs and establishments with amazing architectural structures. While the vessel is on port, you can go to St. Lawrence Church, an old medieval church with Danish organs and bronze doors.


If you want some art appreciation moments, you can check out European paintings and sculptures at the Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen. And to cap off your Netherland’s short travel, look for the country’s famous windmills like the Kinderdijk's Windmills.


5. Antwerp Port, Belgium

Aside from the international industrial port, Belgium is proud of its craftwork and artistry that can be seen in Antwerp City. One of the famous must-see spots is the Antwerp's Grand Place (Grote Markt) featuring old structures like the Brabo Fountain which was built in 1887. You can also see the old St. Paul's Church (Sint-Pauluskerk) which was erected as early as 1517. It has an old baroque clock tower which was made in 1680.


Gentle reminder:  Bring documents with you like shore leave passes, your seaman’s book, and other identification papers you might need to present if the necessity arrives. Ensure also that you have enough money and of course a camera to capture the experience and wonderful places you will visit.

Short trips are your chance to take a break, relax and unwind after months of staying amidst the waves. However, do everything in moderation to guarantee a memorable tour and experience before heading back to the sea. Enjoy!

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