Ports are special places because of their rich and varied if sometimes rowdy social life. There are many reasons for this. Ports are often multicultural places, with ships departing and arriving from all over the world. There is a constant flow of ships` crews looking for a good time. Others have moved in and brought with them their culture. Pubs near ports have always historically been places for crews and workers to meet for both pleasure and business. Out of the way from prying official eyes they gave some a chance to earn a bit of extra cash selling the things they had acquired whilst away.
Port towns and cities are often the first place where immigrants settle.
Several British ports have `Chinatowns`, with Chinese restaurants and shops. In Liverpool, for instance, one of the major shipping lines, the Blue Funnel Line, employed mostly Chinese seamen. Gradually, they got to know Liverpool, and some came ashore to settle, sending for their families.
It is not just nearness and familiarity that persuades immigrants to settle in ports. The local population is used to dealing with people of other nationalities. Ports tend to accept them more easily than inland towns. The ethnic communities also serve others from their country of origin visiting on ships.
Such multiculturalism make a port`s social life interesting and cities have been enriched as a result. We now view the influence of different cultures; Indian and Chinese restaurants being an obvious example, as the norm. There are however areas around some ports where racial intolerance continues to make these places somewhere to be cautious of.