Hurtigruten expands Antarctic service
The Chilean fjords, Cape Horn, Strait of Magellan, and Antarctica are only some of the highlights of MS Midnatsol’s amazing itineraries when she, in September 2016, sets sail from Punta Arenas in Chilean Patagonia. A unique combination of extreme nature experiences in Antarctica and South American hospitality set the framework for Hurtigruten’s initiatives on southern latitudes.
MS Midnatsol (2003) will have up to 500 guests on board. An internationally composed, highly experienced expedition team will ensure varied and exciting content to the voyage, both on board and during landings and excursions. Hiking on glacier ice thousands of years old, walking among penguins, kayaking between seals, and snorkeling in Antarctica’s ice water are just some of the experiences that will be offered.
The itineraries for MS Midnatsol in Antarctica are adjusted to seasonal variations and follow the wildlife in the area, the ice conditions, and the local cultural history. Through the choice of itinerary, landing sites, and popular scientific lectures on board, guests will experience and explore this continent that has had such a lasting attraction on the world’s polar explorers and scientists.
Hurtigruten will also refine sailings of the existing 200-berth explorer vessel MS Fram. The ship’s crew will seek new sites and destinations in Antarctica, inaccessible to larger groups. The guest’s nature experiences will become even more challenging and extreme, through following the footsteps of the great explorers by skiing on glaciers, expedition camping among the penguins, and kayaking in the habitat of seals and whales.
MS Midnatsol will undergo some adjustments prior to the Antarctica sailings but is basically extremely suitable for the operations. The ship has an ice class 1C, helipad, a redundant propulsion system, and will be equipped with a customized oil retention system.
This article originally appeared in the Jan. 22, 2016, issue of the Norwegian American Weekly. To subscribe, visit SUBSCRIBE or call us at (206) 784-4617.