Wednesday 1 July 2015

New expedition ship for Hurtigruten


Norway Explorer will take the place of Midnatsol on Coastal Norway route

MS Norway Explorer

Hurtigruten has announced the purchase of a new expedition ship. The ship, temporarily named MS Norway Explorer, was built in Portugal in 2009 at the Viana do Castelo shipyard*, and is now making her way to Scandinavia. After she undergoes a total reconstruction including adapting for polar waters; upgrading the cabins, suites and public spaces for the 320 guests; and adjusting the power plants and emissions so as to meet Hurtigruten’s high standards, the ship will join the fleet along the Norwegian Coastal Voyage route. Fitting well into the company’s planned expansion to offer more expeditions, the new ship will replace the Midnatsol, which will join the MS Fram in Antarctica for the 2016/17 season.

“The new ship's maneuverability and optimal size will bring Hurtigruten`s guests even closer to nature,” says CEO Daniel Skjeldam. “We invest in our fleet to ensure that Hurtigruten remains a world leader in sustainable explorer travels along the Norwegian coast and polar destinations as well as enrich our guests' unique experiences by expanding our service at destinations such as Greenland, Svalbard and Antarctica.”

A leader in exploration travel, 123-year-old Hurtigruten is continuing to expand its marketing and sales efforts in North America as it invests in its future. Having been taken private late in 2014, the company is gearing up to offer new itineraries, an array of new soft and hard adventure excursions and expansion of its highly regarded expedition leader teams over the next few years.

The company’s fleet of now 13 intimate ships, each which carry 100 to 646 guests, allows travelers to enjoy the scenery and culture of the destination in a relaxed atmosphere. Additional information, brochures and reservations can be obtained from travel agents or Hurtigruten's visitor-friendly website,

Facts about MS Explorer Norway
  • Number of guests: 320
  • Total berth capacity: 180
  • Gross tonnage: 7025
  • Length: 97.53 m
  • Width: 18 m
  • Draft: 5 m
  • Propeller System: 2x 360 Azimut thrusters
  • Machinery: Diesel Electric
  • Speed: 17.4 knots
Atlantida awaiting sale at the shipyard in Portugal
 * Editor notes: This vessel was previously known as "Atlantida" (IMO 9434060) and has already had an interesting history. According to a report in TradeWinds, Atlantida was first ordered in 2006 by Atlantico Line, a ferry company owned by the Azores regional government. The ship, contracted at EUR 50m, was completed in 2009 but Atlantico refused to take delivery, claiming its speed was one knot short of what was stipulated in the contract. Atlantico’s refusal to take delivery played a large part in the Portuguese shipyard's subsequent bankruptcy. Since then the yard, which has been under administration supervised by Portugal’s defence ministry, had been trying to sell the ship.

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