Former Crystal Cruises expedition yacht Crystal Esprit is to join the Lindblad Expeditions-National Geographic fleet as National Geographic Islander II on 18 August 2022.
National Geographic Islander II will be fully refitted and refurbished prior to starting year-round service in the Galápagos Islands. The vessel will offer 26 suites, including four Islander Suites, which will each feature four windows, separate living rooms, and bathrooms with a bathtub and rain shower. There will also be a family suite, as well as four dedicated solo and triple option suites.
In addition, the vessel will have a well-outfitted observation deck, indoor and outdoor dining venues, and expedition amenities such as a marina and Science Hub.
The vessel will offer a variety of experiences, enabling guests to do everything from contributing towards scientific research to adventuring in the Pacific Ocean. For example, they will be able to attend presentations or participate in kayaking, paddleboarding and trips in custom-built glass bottom Zodiacs.
“I had the pleasure of being in Galápagos for the first time last week and you could feel the Lindblad- National Geographic legacy in these iconic islands – from the second-generation Galápagos crew aboard, to the locally grown food on the table to stories of the role we have played in supporting conservation in the archipelago,” said Dolf Berle, president and CEO of Lindblad Expeditions. “With the new National Geographic Islander II, we will be able to build on that legacy and offer an even greater connection to Galápagos and its people for just 48 guests.”
The ship, which will be 280 feet long and 46 feet wide, will have a 1:1 crew-to-guest ratio, as well as an expedition team comprising an undersea specialist, a certified photo instructor and trained field educators.
National Geographic Islander II will also reflect Lindblad’s connection with Ecuador through its locally sourced and produced menus, artwork and decor.