Hurtigruten Transfers MS Midnatsol To Antarctica
Expedition cruise operator Hurtigruten has announced that it will be transferring another ship to Antarctica for the winter season of 2016/17. At the moment, all of Hurtigruten’s explorer voyages, as they are called by the cruise line, are taken aboard MS Fram, but the vessel is set to be joined by MS Midnatsol so that more trips can be offered.
This switch has made room for Hurtigruten to add a new ship to their fleet; the first time they have done so in over a decade. MS Norway Explorer, which the vessel is temporarily called at the moment, will take over from MS Midnatsol in sailing along Norway’s beautiful coastline. The former car ferry was built in 2009 at the Portuguese shipyard of Estaleiros Navais de Viana do Castelo and was previously known as MS Atlantida.
Whilst she will make her first voyage under the Hurtigruten name later this week, it will only be to travel from Portugal to Norway for renovation work. Once in dry-dock, MS Norway Explorer will be refurbished in line with its new brand’s guidelines and will also be installed with systems to make her emissions more eco-friendly. She will emerge in the autumn of 2015 with the capacity to carry up to 320 guests and will include many comfortable public areas.
The excellent manoeuvrability of this new ship means that passengers will be taken closer to nature than ever before. This is perfect for the fjords and inlets along the Norwegian coast, but it is thought that MS Norway Explorer will be deployed on polar cruises in the future. Her ability to explore the smaller, more intimate destinations will put her in good stead when sailing to places such as Greenland, Spitsbergen and Antarctica.
If you would like to sail with Hurtigruten, we have many different expedition cruises available. Whether you want to head north to the Arctic or follow Shackleton to the Antarctic, there are some great options on the Fred.\ Expeditions site.