TACLOBAN CITY -- Two more cruise ships will visit Eastern Visayas islands this year, the Department of Tourism (DOT) announced Tuesday.

DOT-Eastern Visayas Tourism Development Area Manager Rina Apostol said cruise ships Silver Sea Discoverer by Monaco-based Silversea Cruises and MS Bremen by German-based Hapag-Lloyd Cruises have included Eastern Visayas Region in their upcoming expeditions.

Silver Sea Discoverer could carry up to 116 guests and it would visit the island towns of Capul in Northern Samar and Limasawa in Southern Leyte on May 4 and May 8, respectively.

The trip would focus on culinary tourism.

Capul and Limasawa are part of the 11 destinations in the Philippines, which will be toured by cruise passengers on their 13-day expedition in the country.

The ship will also make stops in Apo Reef, Sibuan Island, Donsol, Tica Island, Tagbilaran, Balicasag Island, Cagayan de Oro, Mambajao, Camiguin Island, and Sohoton Bay.

In October, MS Bremen with a capacity of 155 passengers will also visit the islands of Capul and Limasawa.

This is the second visit of MS Bremen in the region. The first was in 2013 in Kalanggaman Island in Palompon, Leyte.

“It is good that Eastern Visayas managed to show its world-class beaches. That is why we need to give a good impression because we have some of the best islands to offer,” said Apostol.

Passengers of these expedition cruise ships are those wanting to have authentic experience of the local culture, history, and livelihood activities.

Last March 28, the 215 passengers of French cruise ship L’Austral of Compagnie du Ponant visited Himukilan and Mahaba islands of Cuatro Islas in the southern part of Leyte province.

“Tour operators picked Himukilan and Mahaba because of the islands’ uniqueness being a small island with a community,” Apostol said.

L’Austral will return to Cuatro Islas on June 20. (PNA)