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Top 10 Largest Ports in Europe

February 16, 2024
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The most widely used form of commodity transportation worldwide is sea shipping. In order to handle the largest container ships, new seaports are constructed are expanded and upgraded. 

In this blog, we’ll get to know the largest ports in Europe which will be helpful for your  understanding of the processes involved with your cargo.

Europe’s largest ports are listed below.

1. Port of Rotterdam, the Netherlands

The biggest and most important seaport in Europe is the port of Rotterdam. The port is situated in the Rhine-Meuse delta on the North Sea. It was the world’s busiest port from the 1960s to 1986. Eventually, the ports of Shanghai and Singapore took its position.

With a maximum draft of 24 metres, the port of Rotterdam can handle the biggest ships in the world.

14.4 million TEUs will pass through the Port of Rotterdam annually.

2. Port of Antwerp, Belgium

One of the ports in North-West Europe with the most rapid rate of growth is the port of Antwerp. It employs more than 150,000 people and occupies 13,000 hectares. With a capacity of more than 20,000 TEUs, the port can accommodate the biggest ships in the world. The ports of Bruges and Antwerp amalgamated in 2022.

Antwerp is one of the major transhipment hubs in the heart of Europe.

13.4 million TEUs pass through the Port of Antwerp annually.

3. Port of Hamburg, Germany

The largest port in Germany is the port of Hamburg. The official founding date was May 7, 1189.

Each of the container terminals are fully integrated with the rail networks earning it the nickname of “gateway to the world.”

Annual throughput at the Port of Hamburg is 8.2 million TEUs.

4. Port of Valencia, Spain

One of the busiest seaports in the Mediterranean is Valencia port in Spain. More than 15,000 workers at this port supply services to more than 7,500 ships annually. Within a 350 km radius, the port of Valencia serves as a major hub of commercial activity.

5 million TEUs will pass through the Port of Valencia annually.

5. Port of Piraeus, Greece

The major port in Greece is Piraeus which is situated close to Athens, the nation’s capital.

The port has three terminals with a combined capacity of nearly 8 million TEU and is mostly owned by the Chinese company COSCO.

5 million TEUs pass through the Port of Piraeus annually.

6. Port of Algeciras, Spain

The largest port in Andalusia, Spain is the port of Algeciras. 

The Port of Algeciras Bay Authority, or APBA, is thegoverning  port authority. 

APM Terminals Algeciras (maximum draft of 17 metres) and Total Terminal International Algeciras (maximum draft of 17.5–18.5 metres) are the port’s two container terminals.

4.7 million TEUs will pass through the Port of Algeciras annually.

7. Port of Bremerhaven, Germany

Situated in northern Germany, the port of Bremerhaven is a major European port. Located  on the bank of the Wesser river is the container terminal. This multimodal terminal operates as the major transshipment hub for German import and export trade via Bremen. The port has helped the city grow into one of the biggest tourism and business hubs.

Bremen is one of the main European hubs for the shipping of automobiles worldwide.

Annual throughput at the Port of Bremen is 4.5 million TEUs

8. Port of Barcelona, Spain

One of the biggest ports in the Mediterranean and the largest in Spain is the port of Barcelona. The container terminal is directly linked with the rail network allowing for a fast and smooth transfer of cargo. Barcelona is often referred to as the best international container terminal. It can handle vessels up to 16 metres in draft and is fully multi modal.

3.5 million TEUs pass through the Port of Barcelona annually.

9. Port of Gioia Tauro, Italy

One of the largest container ports in Italy is the port of Gioia Tauro, which is situated in the southern region of Italy. It is located along the route that connects Suez and Gibraltar, one of the busiest maritime corridors in the world. With a YoY growth in freight traffic of over 7%, it has the largest annual increase of any port worldwide.

3.3 million TEUs pass through the Port of Gioia Tauro annually.

10. Port of Le Havre (Haropa), France

With the founding of the city with the same name in 1517, the development of the port of Le Havre got underway. In 1524, the port formally opened for business. Le Havre was originally constructed to encourage trade with northern France. For the purpose of multi modal cargo handling there are three terminals: TNMSC, Terminal de France, and Terminal Porte Oceane (TPO).

3.1 million TEUs through the Port of Le Havre annually.


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