Despite not being an island, Gibraltar hosted the International Island Games this month, a competition that gathers athletes from over 22 islands. The Island Games Association has an eclectic membership with many of the islands under British sovereignty. For example, participants include one Greek island, Rhodes, one Spanish island, Menorca and Gotland in Sweden. The 2019 NatWest International Island Games saw over 3000 competitors and officials attend from across the 22 member islands. Gibraltar's sports facilities were redeveloped throughout 2018 but due to the lack of venues the games did not include archery, cycling, football, or volleyball, which have been in all previous games and were replaced by tenpin bowling, judo, and squash.
Whilst the games have helped visitor numbers, the number of cruise ships visiting Gibraltar has dropped 30% this year according to data from the Gibraltar Port Authority (‘GPA’). Passenger numbers between May and August are down c46,000. The GPA data showed passenger numbers in May were down by 18,672, June by 10,654, July by 1,324 and August is forecast to be down by 16,196 cruise passengers. Reasons why operators have been put off visiting, range from the general deterioration of the Rock’s tourist product, street cleanliness and uncompetitive...