The speed and frequency of ferries from Dover to Calais makes the French port the first destination that many British people visit on their holidays in Europe, a travel industry spokesperson has suggested.
Katia Breton, tourism representative for the Nord-Pas de Calais region, said that Brits "all come to Calais first" but most extend their trip to more popular holiday destinations further south.
"They are going to other parts of the region, especially Lille and Saint-Omer," she said.
"They visit the fishing ports like Wimereux, Le Touquet-Paris-Plage and Montreuil-Sur-Mer, but they are also coming to the south of the region to Arras."
Commenting on the attractions of the Nord-Pas de Calais region and surrounding areas, Ms Breton said that many people visit war memorials while others head to nature parks such as D'Opale, Escaut and L'Avesnois.
Ferries from Dover to Calais are currently provided by Seafrance and P&O Ferries.
The market could be in for a shake-up soon, however, if Brittany Ferries
is successful in its bid to take over Seafrance.
Written by Andrew Smith