The cruise ship industry is expected to generate more money for the local economy this year, thanks in part to yesterday's Ovation of the Seas visit.

In Napier, the bagpipes were out, vintage cars on display, and streets were abuzz yesterday as many of the ship's 5000 passengers explored what was on offer in Napier.

Hawke's Bay Tourism general manager Annie Dundas said she was thrilled the vessel was in town, with local stores and businesses set to benefit from its passengers.

"It's our biggest cruise ship day," she said. "Town's been very busy, so its certainly having an impact in terms of sheer numbers of people off the ship."

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By 9.30 yesterday morning, the Napier i-Site had a "queue out the door", while other passengers ventured further afield to explore the region's other towns, in search of wineries and other attractions.

Traffic was clogged in streets around the city as buses ferried passengers from the ship and around Napier, while local motorists circled Bluff Hill, keen for a sighting of the massive vessel.

The ship is said to deliver "significant economic benefits" at each of her ports of call, with her visit to Napier expected to inject more than half-a-million dollars in passenger spending alone.

As well as yesterday's boost to the local economy, the ship's visit would give an "injection" to the seasonal amount generated by the cruise ship industry for Hawke's Bay.

Ms Dundas said the industry generally contributed around $20 million to the local economy, however because of yesterday's visit, and more cruise ships sailing into Napier this season, they were expecting figures overall to be up.