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Author: Rebecca Gibson/Friday, July 8, 2016/Categories: News, Cruise news
Norwegian explorer Cecilie Skog named Hurtigruten’s new explorer vessel under the Midnight Sun in Svolvaer, a fishing village in Lofoten, Norway on 6 July.
Marking the first time Hurtigruten has named a ship under the midnight sun, the christening took place in Svolvaer due to the fact that Lofoten has been a highlight of Hurtigruten’s voyages since 1893.
“Adventure travel is one the fastest growing global tourism mega trends and Lofoten offers everything the new adventure traveller seeks: spectacular scenery, authenticity, a unique history and atmosphere, and access to active nature-based experiences,” said Daniel Skjeldam, Hurtigruten CEO. “Svolvaer in many respects mirrors the modern Hurtigruten, being a world leading provider of explorer cruises with activity, learning and sustainability in the core.”
Able to accommodate 335 guests, the 7,344gt vessel is named after Spitsbergen, the largest island in the Svalbard Archipelago, which is located on the northernmost part of Norway next to the North Pole. The island is also where Hurtigruten’s founder, Richard With, first started explorer tourism in the Arctic in 1896.
Spitsbergen will embark on her first voyage from Bergen on 24 July 2016.
“This has been a big year for Hurtigruten, and with the christening of Spitsbergen, we are making headway towards becoming a world-leading adventure travel provider,” said Magnus Zetterberg, UK managing director Hurtigruten. “We look forward to welcoming people from across the globe on-board the new jewel in our ever-growing fleet.”
After spending her first season in Norway, Spitsbergen will alternate between the Norwegian coast and polar expeditions. From 2017, guests can sail to Greenland, Iceland, the Faroe and Shetland Islands, as well as to Arctic Canada. Here, passengers will discover L'Anse aux Meadows, a UNESCO World Heritage site where the first Vikings settlements were discovered in 1960.
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