Carnival Corporation & plc has announced the deployment of Australian-based Sun Princess to Japan for a spring to summer season of cruising from April 2013.

The 87-day program will feature nine cruises with seven alternative itineraries departing from both Yokohama and Kobe and ranging from nine to 12 days in duration.

Carnival Japan, Inc. has been formed to sell Princess Cruises and select Carnival brands in Japan from their head office in Tokyo.

Overseen by Eiko Kijima, Carnival Japan, Inc. is a division of Carnival Corporation & plc and will run in a similar capacity to Carnival UK and Carnival Australia.

“Our new Japan deployment is three times larger than that of any competitive international cruise program, with superior itineraries specifically designed for the Japanese market,” Princess Cruises president and chief executive officer Alan Buckelew said.

“It’s the very first time a global cruise line is offering a full season of cruises from April to July designed specifically for passengers from Japan. We believe that our unique itineraries and onboard experience will prove extremely popular and will help to introduce cruise holidays to a growing number of Japanese vacationers.”

Launching with a nine-day cruise on 27 April 2013, passengers will have the opportunity to celebrate the national holiday of Golden Week with two days in Hakata during the popular Dontaku Festival.

Other ports featured in the seven itineraries include Korsakov, South Korea, Nagoya, Taipei, Sapporo and Nagasaki with overnight stays in Kanazawa, Kobe and Hiroshima.

With 18,000 passengers expected to cruise during the premier season in Japan, Princess Cruises has made several modifications to Sun Princess to enhance passengers’ onboard experience.