Thursday, 30 June 2011

American Safari Cruises Announces 2012-2013 Schedule Of Active Yacht Adventures




Three luxury yachts host 12 to 36 guests in spectacular destinations

 Promising luxury in the pursuit of adventure, American Safari Cruises has released its 2012-2013 deployment detailing voyages for its three yacht fleet. From the ice-filled fjords of Alaska to the lush islands of Hawaii, American Safari Cruises’ yachts explore some of the world’s most scenic destinations.
The nimble yachts, 12-guest Safari Spirit, 22-guest Safari Quest and 36-guest Safari Explorer, specialize in expedition cruising with flexible itineraries. Destinations include Southeast Alaska, Mexico’s Sea of Cortés, Columbia and Snake Rivers, Hawaiian Islands and Washington and British Columbia. Washington and British Columbia

For 2012, the 22-guest Safari Quest sails weeklong Pacific Northwest Passages cruises along the coasts of Washington state and British Columbia from September 14 to November 16, 2012 and from March 29 to May 3, 2013. Sailing roundtrip from Seattle, WA, the yacht visits Victoria, Jervis Inlet and the Harmony Islands, Princess Louisa Inlet, Nanaimo and Gulf Islands, B.C.; and San Juan Islands, WA.

Hawaii
Introduced in 2011, the 36-guest Safari Explorer continues sailing seven-night Hawaiian Seascapes cruises between Maui and the Big Island (and reverse) from January 4 to May 3 and November 3 to December 29, 2012; January 5 to April 13, 2013. The inter-island yacht cruise explores Moloka’i and its picture book Halawa Valley, Lana’i, Maui, Molokini and the Big Island.

Southeast Alaska
All three luxury yachts sail roundtrip from Juneau, Alaska from May 11 to August 24, 2012. The seven night Discoverers’ Glacier Country cruises spend two full days in Glacier Bay National Park with opportunities to hike and kayak with park rangers. The yachts will explore around Icy Strait, Frederick Sound, Admiralty Island, Ford’s Terror and Endicott Arm.

The 15-day Famed Inside Passage cruise from Seattle to Juneau (or reverse) visits San Juan Islands, WA; Canadian Inside Passage; Misty Fjords National Monument, Ketchikan, Petersburg, LeConte Bay, Baird Glacier, Frederick Sound, Red Bluff Bay, Pavlof Harbor, Glacier Bay National Park and Icy Strait, Alaska. In

2012, spring dates include May 11 on Safari Quest and April 27 on Safari Spirit. Returning from Alaska, the Safari Quest departs on August 31 and the Safari Explorer and Safari Spirit depart September 7.

Mexico’s Sea of Cortés
From January 7 to March 31, 2012, the 22-guest Safari Quest explores this UNESCO World Heritage Site and Biosphere Reserve on weeklong Aquarium of the World cruises sailing roundtrip from La Paz, Baja California Sur. The itinerary explores Isla Partida, Bahia Agua Verde, Isla Coyote, Isla San Francisco, Los Islotes, Isla San José and Isla Espiritu Santos.

Columbia and Snake Rivers
The 12-guest Safari Spirit sails from Portland, OR to Lewiston, ID (and reverse) on weeklong Rivers of the West cruises September 29, October 13 and 20, 2012. The itinerary visits the Columbia River Gorge, Bonneville Dam, Hood River, Washington Wine Country, Palouse River Canyon and Hells Canyon.
In all destinations, the yachts sail flexible itineraries in order to maximize wildlife viewing opportunities and provide one-of-a-kind active adventures for guests. Activities may vary by destination and include kayaking, hiking, biking, yoga, beachcombing, snorkeling, stand up paddle boarding, tubing, sailing and skiff rides. Expert guides and naturalists lead many excursions.

The inclusive cruises include all from-the-yacht activities and equipment; transfers; exquisite meals; fine wine, premium spirits and microbrews; and all port charges, taxes and fees. All yachts feature a hot tub, Tempur-pedic mattresses, heated tile floors in all bathrooms and upper category balconies. Some also feature saunas, a complimentary massage and Jacuzzi tubs. An all-American crew has a guest-crew ratio of 2 to 1. To book a yachting adventure or to request additional information, contact your travel agent or American Safari Cruises at 888-862-8881 or email sales@americansafaricruises.com or The Cruise Line.

Wednesday, 29 June 2011

St Helena Riding the Crest of a Wave with Sea-borne Arrivals on the Rise

More cruise and yacht visitors are being attracted to the remote South Atlantic shores of St Helena according to the latest figures released by St Helena Tourism.

The total number of visitors arriving by sea reached 3,132 in 2010. Cruise ship numbers held up well, but the most impressive growth was demonstrated by yacht visitors, up 15% to 545 in 2010 against 475 in 2009. Significant growth is already being seen in 2011, with yacht visitors in the first quarter already at 507, almost the same level as the whole of 2010. This is no doubt in part attributable to recently improved yachting facilities on the island.

The average number of visitors per cruise ship increased by 75% in 2010 against 2009, from 426 to 748; and cruise visitor numbers are already up for 2011 and 2012. Satisfaction levels among cruise visitors remained extremely high with 96% of visitors rating their visit Good or Above. For most people it was their first visit to St Helena, and 96% said they would recommend the island to their friends. Descriptions of the island included “once in a lifetime experience” and “a paradise”.

According to Janet Shankland, Sales and Marketing Executive, St Helena Tourism: “The upward trend signifies a positive future for sea-borne tourism to St Helena, with more cruise and tour operators attracted by its unique position and remarkable history and nature, best known as the place of Napoleon’s exile.

“Plans to build a new breakwater at Jamestown Wharf with enhanced landing facilities for cruise ships are also underway. This comes as part of a wider investment in infrastructure and the tourism offering under our ‘extraordinary’ branding,” she explains.

Presently the only means of getting to St Helena, located 1,500 miles from Cape Town, is by sea. The island is regularly served by one of the last Royal Mail ships, the RMS St Helena, a 128-berth passenger/cargo vessel. Other cruise lines servicing St Helena include Seabourn, P&O and Silversea. The new breakwater is expected to be completed three years after the contract, currently up for tender, has been awarded.

For more information on St Helena visit www.sthelenatourism.com or The Crusie Line.

Tuesday, 28 June 2011

Tall ship sailing specialist Star Clippers is offering an early Christmas present for those booking a cruise along the coast of Costa Rica over Christmas on the graceful, four-masted square rigger, the 170-passenger Star Flyer.

On either the Christmas departure, a ten-night voyage departing Puerto Caldera on December 18, or the 11-night New Year sailing, which departs on December 28, the following special offers apply:
In all double cabins, there will be a €300 per person onboard credit to put towards drinks in the restaurant and Tropical Bar, shore excursions, purchases in the Sloop Shop and beauty and massage treatments.
In triple cabins, the third person sails free (port taxes still apply) and the first two occupants qualify for onboard credit of €300 per person.
For single travellers, there will be no single supplement in cabin categories 2 to 6.

In the New Year departure only, these additional offers apply:
Children only pay 50% of the published fare.
epeat Star Clippers passengers qualify for a loyalty discount of 5%.

The Christmas cruise includes calls at San Juan del Sur in Nicaragua; Costa Rica’s Playa del Coco and National Park Santa Rosa; the gorgeous beaches and rainforest walks of Quepos, Isla del Cano and Drake Bay; and the desert island paradise of Isla Tortugas. Christmas day is spent anchored in Golfito, a lush bay surrounded by mountains and known for its wildlife refuge, orchid garden and jungle canopy expeditions. From £1,770 per person, excluding flights.

On December 28, Star Flyer departs Puerto Caldera once more for the New Year cruise, which includes all of the ports above and in addition, Panama’s Isla Gamez, with superb snorkelling and palm-fringed sandy beaches. New Year’s Eve will be spent in Playa del Coco, sailing overnight to toast the New Year in the Tropical Bar, where there will be dancing until late, and recovering on the beach the following day at Santa Rosa National Park. From £2,051 per person, excluding flights.

To take advantage of these fantastic deals, visit http://www.starclippers.co.uk/

Monday, 27 June 2011

Hapag-Lloyd's 2012/13 Expedition Season


Hapag-Lloyd Cruises announces the arrival of their March 2012-May 2013 expedition brochure. Their small and beautifully appointed expedition ships, MS Hanseatic and MS Bremen, will be offering 12 international (English/German) itineraries next season.

They include travel in Antarctica, the Northwest Passage, Greenland, Spitsbergen, Norway, the Amazon, the South Seas and New Zealand. In addition, the expedition itineraries feature new ports of call in Madagascar and Mozambique and a maiden voyage through theSea of Okhotsk in Russia’s Far East.

The two ships were created to provide intensive exploration in the most elegant surroundings for a maximum of 184 guests on Hanseatic and 164 on Bremen.

Antarctica

Glaciers, icebergs, deep fjords and bays offer the setting for an unforgettable Antarctic expedition. In addition to observing bird colonies, guests will also have the opportunity to explore the Falkland Islands and South Georgia, bath in the hot springs on Deception Island and observe whales in the Antarctic Sound.

For more info, visit www.hl-cruises.com

Sunday, 26 June 2011


The thing about adventure cruising is it takes to you to some amazing islands. One of  my favourites is the Isle of May in Scotland's Firth of Forth. It has so much history and changes everytime you go there. It's also full of surprises like Scotland's oldest light house and these puffins perching on a First world war officer's toilet!
I went there last year with Zegrahm Expeditions but yesterday I took the rib boat from North Berwick. There's a great blog you can follow about the island at http://isleofmaynnr.blogspot.com/

Saturday, 25 June 2011

Have A Whale Of A Time With Necker Belle's New Whale Watching Charters

23 June 2011 – In February and March 2012, Necker Belle will be introducing whale watching charters in the Silver Bank situated approximately 100km north of the town of Puerto Plata in the Dominican Republic and 138km southeast of the Turks and Caicos Islands.

During the winter months the North Atlantic Humpback whale starts a long annual migration from north to south. The exact route they take can vary, but one area they’re sure to visit is the Silver Bank, now famous as a breeding and calving zone for the whales, attracting more humpback whales per year than anywhere else on earth with 5-7,000 each season.

With it being their mating season, guests will undoubtedly get to see some amazing action while they’re performing elaborate courtship rituals humpback whales spend a lot of time on the surface, often as a group of males strutting their stuff as they try to impress the females. This behaviour often turns to aggression as the whales ram and flop over each other to get the best position.

In collaboration with Aquatic Adventures led by expert Tom Conlin, from the 16th February - 25th March 2012, Necker Belle will be offering guests the opportunity to spend 2.5 days of their weekly charter watching the whales. However, they don’t just get to watch from the deck of Necker Belle as they’ll have the opportunity to get into the water – known as a soft in-water encounter – to get even closer to these magnificent creatures. The contact will be passive floating in snorkelling gear allowing the whales to develop an interest and approach as they feel comfortable.

In preparation for this fascinating and rare opportunity, guests will be provided with a presentation and video footage of whales in action highlighting whale behaviour and anatomy.

Sir Richard Branson commented: “I am so excited that we’re able to offer this unique experience to guests chartering Necker Belle. These world-renowned whales are truly fascinating creatures and I have already put my name down to experience this amazing opportunity!”

The weekly charter rate for these unique whale watching itineraries is US$130,000* plus APA, which includes accommodation onboard Necker Belle, a dedicated crew and whale watching.

Necker Belle, is a magnificent 32 metre catamaran sailing tailor-made itineraries year round. With spacious common areas and beautifully appointed cabins with en-suites, Necker Belle is perfectly designed for fun and relaxation.

Friday, 24 June 2011

Brown Bluff, Antarctica

This is Brown Bluff the most northerly point on the Antarctic peninsula. I just love the wake of the Polar Circkle boat as it takes people to the beach from Hurtigruten's polar adventure cruise ship "Fram".
We saw Orcas here as well as numerous penguins and seals.
You can't really explain Antarctica to anyone who has not been there.Iit is simply awesome. The word ineffable isn't used much these days but it should be about the White Continent. You can find out  more about Hurtigrutens' voayges to both polar regions at http://www.hurtigruten.co.uk/

Thursday, 23 June 2011

WINDSTAR CRUISES INTRODUCES BIKE PROGRAMME TO ALL THREE YACHTS

Windstar Cruises, operator of a three-ship fleet of luxury yachts, has added a bike programme to its fleet for guests who enjoy exploring destinations under their own steam.

Windstar’s new bike programme features 7000-series, aluminum frame Dragon Marine Folding Bikes. Wind Surf has eight bikes and Wind Spirit and Wind Star each have four bikes. The bikes are available for half day or full day rental. Rates are $39 for a half-day rental (4 hours), or $59 for a full-day rental (8 hours). Bike helmets, locks and chains are provided.

Bikes are available for rental in most ports and guests can reserve bikes through Windstar’s Destination Manager onboard each yacht.
Call Windstar Cruises on 020 7292 2369 or visit www.windstarcruises.co.uk

Wednesday, 22 June 2011

Centenary of Sir Douglas Mawson’s Australasian Antarctic Expedition

Aurora Expeditions have three exciting voyages to commemorate the centenary of Sir Douglas Mawson’s Australasian Antarctic Expedition. In January 1912, explorer Douglas Mawson and 17 others landed at Commonwealth Bay. For the next year, they braved appalling conditions, when the wind speed averaged nearly 80 km/h, occasionally peaking above 320 km/h. Their expedition ranks as one of the most successful in polar exploration history.

Each of Aurora Expeditions’ Centenary voyages visits three outstanding regions: Macquarie Island, where Mawson set up a communications base; the East Antarctic coast, a vast region where the polar plateau offers a dramatic backdrop to Mawson’s Hut; and New Zealand’s exquisite subantarctic islands.

Passengers departing on the first Mawson’s centenary voyage will mark the departure from Hobart of the 1911-14 Australasian Antarctic Expedition (AAE) led by Sir Douglas Mawson on Dec 2 1911—exactly 100 years to the day after the AAE sailed for Macquarie Island.

“The Mawson’s Huts Foundation is looking forward to welcoming all passengers to the Sir Douglas Mawson Centenary dinner in Hobart on Thursday Dec 1. Over 500 guests are expected to attend the dinner which is being supported by the Federal and Tasmanian governments and a flotilla of hundreds of ships will farewell your ship as you sail down to the Derwent on the first leg of your voyage to Mawson’s Huts at Cape Denison.

Patron of the Foundation the Governor General of Australia Ms Quentin Bryce AC has been invited to attend the dinner which will also mark the beginning of the “heroic era” celebrations for Antarctic exploration which saw the Norwegian Amundsen reach the South Pole ahead of the British Explorer Robert Falcon Scott, his demise and then Mawson’s own incredible feat of survival after the loss of two colleagues”. David Jensen, Mawson Hut Foundation.

These 26-day voyages are Aurora Expeditions’ most adventurous in scope, with extended sea crossings and the chance to explore the pack ice edge, where much of Antarctica’s marine life, including whales, seals and penguins, can be found. The voyages will visit Mawson’s Hut and the abandoned French base at Port Martin, and the working research station of Dumont d’Urville. Prices start from US$17,475 per person twin share.

The voyage, “Emeralds of the Subantarctic” is a 13-day expedition, which takes you to Macquarie Island and Campbell Island, the Auckland Islands and, depending on sea conditions, a rare Zodiac cruise of the Snares Islands. This region contains the greatest diversity of seabirds in the world, often in astounding numbers. It’s a tremendous opportunity to visit a wildlife wonderland. Prices for this voyage start from US$7,325 per person twin share.
Aurora Expeditions will be utilising their ship Akademik Shokalskiy for the East Antarctica voyages The decision to use small, ice-strengthened ships allows Aurora Expeditions to visit areas that other large cruise ships can't. For many years, Aurora Expeditions has been a leading expedition cruise company specialising in Antarctic and European Arctic expeditions. Since the early 1990s, Aurora Expeditions have shared their love of Antarctica with small groups of adventurous individuals keen to explore one of the wildest places on Earth.

Aurora Expeditions’ dynamic team all share a great respect for natural and cultural environments. Aurora Expeditions continues to approach expedition travel as a catalyst for making a difference in one’s life, and in the world.
For more information or to order a free brochure, visit http://www.auroraexpeditions.com.au/.

Tuesday, 21 June 2011

Save up to £2460 ($4000) per couple on a journey to the Falkland Islands with National Geographic Explorer

Enjoy the unspoiled landscapes and myriad wildlife of the Falkland Islands with Lindblad Expeditions as part of their 24 day journey aboard the National Geographic Explorer. Passengers booking the 24 day journey will receive a £1230 ($2,000) * discount per person on their expedition and a complimentary charter flight between Ushuaia and Buenos Aires. To top it all off the package also includes two free nights in Buenos Aires.

The expedition starts in Buenos Aires on October 18 and includes a two-day stop in the Falkland Islands. An archipelago comprised of more than 700 individual islands, the Falklands are home to the largest Black browed albatross colony in the world, thousands of gentoo, rockhopper and Magellanic penguins and herds of sea lions and elephant seals. In addition to getting up close with the wildlife, passengers will also have the opportunity to go ashore and experience the capital of the Falklands – Stanley – within easy reach of white sandy beaches, relax in one of the local pubs, or learn about the history of this port city.

The itinerary also includes a stop at South Georgia Island as well as Peninsula Valdes, which is the main breeding site for the endangered southern right whales that are concentrated in the area to give birth and find mates.

The National Geographic Explorer is one of the most technologically advanced expedition ships in the world. Her reinforced ice belt makes it possible to navigate polar passages while also providing exceptional comfort. It also carries 36 kayaks and a fleet of Zodiac landing craft that allow passengers to get up close and experience the region firsthand. While aboard the ship, guests will enjoy international cuisine with a local flair as well as a host of amenities including a fitness centre and spa. There are also numerous lectures led by specialists so that passengers can learn about the region and its unique wildlife, and every voyage aboard National Geographic Explorer is accompanied by a National Geographic photographer. This voyage will include award-winning filmmaker Keenan Smart, Executive Producer of National Geographic’s “Great Migration” series.

The 24-day journey starts from £8375 ($13,780) per person based on two adults sharing.* For more information or to make reservations, visit www.expeditions.com , e-mail: explore@expeditions.com or call: + 001 212-261-9000. The package does not include international flights.

Monday, 20 June 2011

SeaDream

SeaDream visits the yachting playgrounds, intimate harbors and ports where larger ships cannot go. SeaDream I and SeaDream II spend May – October in Northern Europe, the Baltic, Norwegian Fjords, the Mediterranean and the Black Sea. With only 112 guests being pampered by an award-winning crew of 95 from November – April they visit the turquoise waters of the Caribbean, including specially designed, exclusive voyages to the Amazon from Barbados (Above) to Iquitos, Peru.
For more information visit http://www.seadream.com/

Sunday, 19 June 2011

Climbing the Rigging in the South Pacific

This is the Soren Larsen sailing in the South Pacific. You can join her and learn all there is about tall ship sailing whilst visiting some of the most enchanted islands on Earth.  She visits such places as Tahiti sailing the tradewinds to find the untouched beauty and undisturbed culture of the remoter islands and communities of Polynesia and Melanesia.
 The cabins are roomy and you're expected to take your turn on watch.If you're of a ceratin age and she looks familiar that because she was the star of "The Onedin Line."

You can find out more on http://www.sorenlarsen.co.nz/ or in UK The Cruise Line


Friday, 17 June 2011

FROM THE WORLD’S LARGEST YET LEAST VISITED NATIONAL PARK TO A TRANSATLANTIC CROSSING

Hurtigruten lines up new voyages for 2012/13

Fancy exploring the rarely visited North East Greenland National Park, the largest in the world and yet the least visited with approximately 500 visitors each year? Or how about exploring Ittoqqortoormiit, the most isolated town in Greenland? Or why not experience an Equator Baptism by King Neptune on a cross-hemispheric journey from the Canary Islands to Buenos Aires? All this and much more is possible with Hurtigruten whose latest dedicated programme of ‘Explorer’ voyages for 2012/13 in Spitsbergen, Greenland, Antarctica and Europe features new itineraries, experiences and the chance to visit some of the most remote places in the world.
New itineraries introduced, all on board MS Fram, include:
National Park Expedition- This voyage takes in three Arctic islands - Spitsbergen, Greenland and Iceland. Seven days are spent within the North East Greenland National Park, which is the largest in the world and the least visited with approximately 500 visitors each year. It is one of the most isolated places on earth and hikes, small boat trips, lectures and briefings can all be enjoyed. A day is spent at Ittoqqortoormiit, the most isolated town in Greenland and the trappers living here are the only ones allowed to hunt within the National Park. The 14 day voyage from Spitsbergen to Greenland and then onto Iceland departs on 6 September 2012 in the Arctic autumn and before the winter closes in and makes this corner of the planet uninhabitable. Prices are from £4535pp full board, cruise only.
Trans-Atlantic Crossing – This is a completely different, cross-hemispheric offering from Hurtigruten and the first time it has been offered travelling south. This is the main leg of MS Fram’s winter repositioning journey from Las Palmas in the Canary Islands to Buenos Aires. With the famous Equator Baptism by King Neptune and his wife for those crossing the Equator for the first time and BBQ’s on deck this voyage is all about enjoying life on the ocean wave in a relaxed atmosphere with the ships crew. The19 day voyage departs on 14 October 2012 and is priced from £1292 pp full board, cruise only. Just £68 per day.
Autumn Adventure – This new eight-day North Atlantic Islands voyage begins in Reykjavik, Iceland and sets off across the North Sea toward Torshavn on one of the 18 Faroe Islands and one of the smallest capitals in the world. Next stop is Lerwick in the Shetland Islands, by far the northernmost town in Scotland and Kirkwall in the Orkney Islands with a population of just 8,500. The voyage also calls at Leith/Edinburgh before crossing the North Sea to Bergen. Departing on 19 September 2012 costs from £872pp full board, cruise only.
Hurtigruten has also doubled the number of departures on its most popular Antarctica voyage, ‘The Classic Expedition’. For 2012/13 there are now six departures. New International Maritime Authority (IMA) fuel rules ban the use of heavy fuel oils from use and carriage from 1 August 2011. MS Fram uses Marine Gas Oil (MGO) rather than the heavy fuel oils used by some other ships. A 10 day Classic Expedition costs from £3443pp including flights from Buenos Aires to Ushuaia and back, full board.
For more information call Hurtigruten on 020 8846 2666 or http://www.hurtigruten.co.uk/


Thursday, 16 June 2011

SECOND PERSON TRAVELS FOR HALF PRICE ON ORION EXPEDITION CRUISES AUGUST SABAH VOYAGE

Orion Expedition Cruises, the leading operator of five-star expedition cruising in Australasia and South East Asia, has announced details of fabulous savings on its 11th August Sabah Highlights & Sandakan Memorial voyage onboard Orion II.
On this 10-night voyage, the second person in a stateroom will travel for half price making a saving of £2,385. This offer applies to the second person travelling in the same stateroom on the same sailing, and the half price offer is for the cruise element only).
The Sabah Highlights & Sandakan Memorial voyage starts in Kota Kinabalu on 11th August and visits Pulau Mantanani, Sandakan, Kudat, Pulau Labuan, Klias Wetlands and Pulau Tiga before arriving back in Kota Kinabalu.
The expedition takes in some of the very remote islands of Malaysia. This is the heart of the Coral Triangle which boasts some of the best snorkelling in the world. The area is legendary for underwater coral forests and amazing marine diversity. As well as relaxing days of swimming and snorkelling, there will be plenty of other highlights including Sandakan and the Kinabatangan River. Described as Malaysia’s Gift to the Earth, the Kinabatangan is a wildlife mecca, and guests have the opportunity to journey deep within the rainforest to explore its beauty with an overnight stay in the comfortable Kinabatangan Riverside Lodge in Sukau. On the journey along the river there will be opportunities to see wild orangutans, proboscis monkeys, macaques, Bornean pygmy elephants and some of the world’s most spectacular bird species. In fact, the Kinabatangan River’s surrounding forest is one of only two known places in the world where all ten species of primates are found.
During this voyage Orion Expedition Cruises will also explore the tragic history of the infamous World War II Sandakan Death Marches. The visit will take place on Sandakan Memorial Day and Orion guests will participate in a special wreath laying ceremony at the Sandakan Memorial. This memorial commemorates all those who lost their lives in the camps and the Sandakan Death Marches.
Prices from £4,770 per person (£2,385 for the second person sharing the stateroom) including ten nights onboard Orion II, all meals, entertainment and educational programmes, use of the ship’s sporting equipment and facilities, Zodiac excursions, port and handling charges, tender transfers and government fees and taxes.
For further information and reservations call 020 7399 7620 or visit http://www.orionexpeditions.com/

Wednesday, 15 June 2011

World's longest Travel Broadcast?

This is a travel TV at the extreme! On Thursday 16 June, Hurtigruten and the Norwegian Broadcasting Corporation (NRK) will embark on a 134-hour (8040 minutes) non-stop live broadcast. At least nine cameras will be used during the voyage from Bergen to Kirkenes on board MS Nordnorge to stream the action live into homes across Norway and via the Internet to the rest of the world.

The show will feature real experiences on a minute-by-minute basis including interviews with the guests and crew along the way. NRK have dedicated their second largest channel NRK2 to the show. During the 134-hour broadcast, viewers watching the show will be able to experience the amazing Norwegian coastline, celebrated worldwide for its natural beauty and untouched scenery. The itinerary includes the western fjords with UNESCO-listed Geirangerfjord, the coast of Helgeland, the Lofoten Islands, Tromsø, the gateway to the Arctic, and the North Cape. The route of course includes a wealth of other breathtaking sights.

So whether you fancy whetting your appetite, or want to relive a trip you have done in the past, go to http://hurtigruten.co.uk/live where the show will be streamed live. For Hurtigruten cruises visit The Cruise Line.

Tuesday, 14 June 2011

SWOOP PATAGONIA LAUNCHES NEW ANTARCTIC ADVENTURES


Specialist introduces polar expedition portfolio in time for austral spring

In response to customer demand, Patagonian travel specialist Swoop Patagonia  now offers a range of Antarctic adventures boasting exhilarating sea voyages, encounters with rare wildlife and access to one of the world’s most remote landscapes.

Swoop Patagonia, in collaboration with destination experts Antarctic Dream, Aurora Expeditions and Polar Star Expeditions, has selected a range of itineraries to provide travellers with authentic, exciting and responsible Antarctic adventures. Patagonia is the ideal starting point for an Antarctic adventure that includes sea and air crossings of Drake Passage and visits to the glaciers, volcanoes and animal colonies of the South Shetland Islands and the Antarctic Peninsula.

Luke Errington, CEO of Swoop Patagonia said: “Patagonia is the gateway to the Antarctic region, and our expertise and unique model have enabled us to offer trips working directly with Antarctic cruises so we deliver the best value for money and latest availability. Swoop allows travellers to compare different polar trips in one place, seeking our impartial advice on which adventure is exactly right for them whether that’s a fly and cruise option or a trip that includes camping on the ice and sea swimming.”

He continued: “The British winter months are an excellent time to visit Antarctica and take advantage of the 24-hour austral spring daylight that allows visitors to see so much of the landscape and wildlife in a relatively short trip.”
Example itineraries include:

Classic Antarctic Aboard Ushuaia: 11 days from £5,980 per person (dep. 10 Dec 2011)

Navigate through icebergs and ice-filled channels, spot elephant seals and fur seals, and observe the whales, dolphins, seabirds and penguins that thrive in the majestic Antarctic environment. Agile zodiac boats allow land visits to places including Petermann Island and the cruise passes through the breath taking Gerlache Strait and Lemaine Channel.

Antarctic Dream Expedition: 11 days from £4,400 per person (dep. 11 Nov 2011)
Explore the abundance of natural wonders and human history in the South Shetland Islands and the western Antarctic Peninsula, including a landing at Petermann Island to see the southern-most Gentoo penguin colony, the region’s most active volcano at Deception Island and an opportunity to swim in the Antarctic waters at Whaler's Bay and Pendulum Cove.

Antarctica Fly & Sail: eight days exploring the Peninsula – from £5,990 per person (dep 22 Dec 2011)

Sail the legendary Drake Passage, encounter Antarctic penguins and albatross aplenty and cruise through icebergs to admire glaciers and historic sites. Visit the South Shetland Islands and discover the history of human expeditions in the breath taking wilderness.

In addition to its new Antarctic portfolio, Swoop Patagonia provides a free, comprehensive catalogue of vetted local operators and trekking, horse riding and kayaking trips in the Patagonia region, as well as in-depth knowledge of Patagonia’s adventure travel opportunities. Book with the only UK based Patagonian adventure travel specialist, http://www.swoop-patagonia.co.uk/ or call 0117 369 0196.

Monday, 13 June 2011

Skellig Michael

Skellig Michael has to be one of the most dramatic and awe inspiring places in the world. I visted it as part of an adventure cruise with Zegrahm expeditions. You’ll need to reasonably fit to visit Skellig Michael. OK it’s not Croagh Patrick but you’ve still got to get up 400 steps of a 1000 year old staircase and if you haven’t got a head for heights the narrow path near the top can be a bit daunting. However once you’re up there it’s one of the most incredible and fascinating places in the world.
Now a World Heritage the sight of the stone built beehive cells of this 6th Century Anchorite monastery will live with you forever. This really is Ireland’s history on the doorstep but landing here can be difficult and impossible if the seas are rough, although that didn’t seem to deter the Vikings who sacked this place on numerous occasions!
It’s not just the stunning views across to Little Skellig, the islands baby sister and the Ring of Kerry shimmering some nine miles away but the birds here are simply stunning. Peregrine Falcons glide effortlessly by staring you full in the face with an expression of half curiosity and half contempt and if you time it right, you almost feel you can walk up and shake hands with a puffin such are the bird’s acceptance of humans.
Have a great day now.

Sunday, 12 June 2011

CRYSTAL’S LAUNCHES NEW ‘PRIVATE ADVENTURE OPTION’

Do you love to see legendary sites, but dislike group tours? Renowned for unique and creative land tours that complement its ultra-luxury cruise experience, Crystal Cruises is introducing a private shore excursion alternative for individualistic adventurers. Crystal’s new “Private Adventure Option” enables guests to take already-organised group excursions – in a more intimate fashion.
Beginning this August/September, parties of two, four or six can opt for a personal guide and private vehicle to tour Ephesus, Pompeii or the city of Barcelona, for example – on a shore-side itinerary already carefully crafted by Crystal’s Land Programmes team and its worldwide tour operators.
Crystal’s Vice President - International Sales & Marketing, Philip Ordever, was inspired to create the programme by his own Crystal cruise holiday. “While I heard how much guests appreciated the ‘creative content’ of our Crystal Adventures, some said they would love to take the same tour by themselves to make it even more personal,” says Ordever. “At Crystal, we are committed to giving our guests choices. Being able to really personalise your experience is the hallmark of a perfect luxury holiday.”
For several years, Crystal has offered guests a “Crystal Private Adventure” programme, which offers the opportunity to design customised land itineraries for individuals, their families and friends. The new “Private Adventure Option” is similar, but follows established excursions in a private way. If guests prefer to modify their “Private Adventure Option” or expand the group, the trip would then become a custom “Crystal Private Adventure.”
Launching 14th August and 13th September on Crystal Serenity and Crystal Symphony respectively, the “Private Adventure Option” can be pre-reserved at least one week prior to embarkation by emailing crystaladventures@crystalcruises.com. Prices will be at least 25% more than group tour fares, but vary depending on excursion length, vehicle size, guide costs and sites visited.
This autumn/winter, Crystal ships will cruise the Mediterranean, New England/Canada, Panama Canal, Caribbean, Mexican Riviera, Pacific Coast and Hawaii. Crystal’s huge Autumn Fare Sale offers savings up to £5,078 per couple. Crystal’s passion for creating exclusive, eye-opening luxury shore-side experiences is a cornerstone of its Crystal Adventures programme, helping earn the line top ratings for two decades.

For reservations visit www.crystalcruises.co.uk

Saturday, 11 June 2011

Charity Auction on The Polar Seas

Guests on board Hurtigruten voyages in Spitsbergen, Greenland and Antarctica this season will be offered the opportunity to raise money in support of the areas of the Arctic and Antarctic they have just sailed through. At the end of every expedition voyage a charity auction will now takes place with all funds raised being donated to local preservation organisations.

Trialed last year, these auctions have now become a permanent fixture on MS Fram expedition voyages. The usual beneficiaries are institutions that look after the preservation and further development of areas visited such as the Antarctica South Georgia Heritage Trust, Birdlife International or the Ocean Foundation. However, the auctions can also help local people such as Greenland’s children who also receive support from the money raised.

“We want to give something back to the regions we have visited.” Said Expedition Team Leader Karin Strand. “Our guests respond very positively to the auctions. They too recognise the privilege of being able to travel to these remote areas and they like to say thank you by giving something back.”

Items coming under the hammer include the sea chart for the voyage in question, expedition team jackets and donated items from the research stations and localities visited during the voyage. On one voyage alone last year, the operator raised 6000 euro.

For more information visit Hurtigruten http://www.hurtigruten.co.uk/ or The Cruise Line.








Friday, 10 June 2011

From wild Scotland to the Norwegian Fiords

This voyage with Noble Caeldonia begins on the west coast of Scotland in the port of Oban. From here, the journey north includes magnificent St Kilda and calls in the Orkney and Shetland Islands where you can immerse in some of the mysterious ancient history. Reaching Sunnfjord, one of Norway's most stunning areas, you will make your way along the coast, visiting the vast swathe of fjord indented coast and through the chain of islands all the way up to the Lofoten group.
It is difficult to imagine a more relaxing setting than coastal Norway. Words cannot describe the awe-inspiring scenery as we take in views of mountains, glaciers, waterfalls, valleys and truly dramatic fjords. The immense size of the fjords and the timeless quality of scenes that have changed little in the past centuries create a unique atmosphere.

The voyage avoids the route of big cruise ships wherever possible and many of the ports of call will be tranquil hamlets of small communities and it will be fascinating to learn of their unique lifestyles. Such a journey can of course only be undertaken by a special vessel with the self-sufficient qualities of the MS Quest. With just 50 fellow passengers, you can enjoy the beauty of this region in small groups and from aboard a small, friendly ship and with  Zodiacs you will be able to land on remote beaches and explore shorelines with their prolific birdlife. The daily schedule will take advantage of weather conditions and possible sightings to achieve as much as possible from your voyage.

For more information visit http://www.noble-caledonia.co.uk/.

Thursday, 9 June 2011

New Off-The-Beaten-Track Adventure Cruise To Antarctica Incorporating Brand New Activities

Antarctica Off The Beaten Track is a brand new 12-night adventure cruise frm One Ocean Expeditions incorporating a selection of extraordinary outdoor pursuits not previously available on other itineraries, which are designed to excite and inspire lovers of the Great Outdoors.

Departing Ushuaia, the world’s southern-most city, in Argentina on 8 November 2011, passengers travelling with One Ocean Expeditions on board Akademik Ioffe, an impressive ice-strengthened ship designed for Polar Research, will have the opportunity to experience three new activities: ski touring, overnight sea kayaking trips - unique in Antarctica to this operator - and full-day expedition field photography with renowned Polar photographer, Daisy Gilardini.

One of the only Antarctic ships still actively participating in true oceanographic science through Russia’s Institute of Oceanography in Kaliningrad, the Akademik Ioffe combines modern comforts and superb amenities with first-class safety and manoeuvrability.

Outdoor enthusiasts, thrill seekers, naturalists and would-be adventurers will find it the perfect vessel on which to travel through Antarctica to witness the region’s pristine beauty and abundant wildlife. Plus, the unpredictability of the region adds to the anticipation and excitement of participating in adrenaline-pumping activities such as snow shoeing, hiking, cruising in inflatable Zodiacs, sea kayaking and overnight camping in stunning Polar terrain.Passengers will be able to choose from activities included in the package price, such as a relatively gentle hiking expedition along the rocky shore or a more challenging long distance trek to the outer limits, and overnight camping on the ice amidst the Polar landscape: a truly memorable experience.

Among the optional adventures on offer for those enrolled on the sea kayaking programme (US$750), is the brand new two-night polar sea kayak and camping excursion (additional fee US$300) led by experienced kayak guides. Previous sea kayaking and camping experience is necessary to participate in these pursuits and is subject to approval by a One Ocean Expedition guide.

Other options providing the opportunity to appreciate varied terrain amidst Antarctic snow pack include snow shoeing (US$45) giving access to breathtaking vistas unimpaired by waist deep powder, or the new, more strenuous mountaineering/ski touring expedition ($750) aimed at skiers who enjoy a challenge and are not afraid of skinning up for the run of a lifetime. Ski-touring also requires previous experience and approval from a guide before participation can be confirmed.

For keen photographers interested in field photography, a full day’s expedition with speciality polar photographer, Daisy Gilardini, is now on offer (US$45), focusing on capturing either adventure pursuits with a remarkable backdrop or stunning landscape scenes.The 12-night Antarctica Off The Beaten Track expedition includes all meals and accommodation plus Zodiac excursions and landings, special hiking programmes, ship transfers, foul weather gear and overnight camping. Prices start from US$8390 per person based on twin share, from US$6590pp for triple share and from US$10980pp in a One Ocean Suite. Price excludes flights UK – Ushuaia (available from £949 including pre-paid taxes and current fuel surcharges). Dates: 8 – 20 November 2011, (Ushuaia/Ushuaia)

For further information, visit www.oneoceanexpeditions.com or the Cruise Line

Wednesday, 8 June 2011

Vietnam with Orion

From Ho Chi Minh to My Son, Nha Trang to Ha Long Bay, Vietnam is intoxicating. With energy and charm of equal proportions, and a regal history of passion, war and conquests to rival any European history, Orion II’s nine-night Vietnam Explorer voyages include not one, or two, but four UNESCO World Heritage sites - Hue, Hoi An, My Son and Ha Long Bay. Extraordinary, even by Orion standards!

Whether it is the organised chaos of cruising the Saigon River with its junks, exploring the traditional fishing village of Baie de Cu Mon, rarely seen by outsiders, or exploring Nha Trang with its Communist Party headquarters, beach brewery and $1 lobsters for lunch, a voyage with Orion promises, and delivers, the unexpected.

Even Ha Long Bay is explored with fresh eyes. Seen from onboard a traditional junk, wending peacefully through the islands, the soaring limestone karsts are spectacular; venturing into limestone caves with the expedition team on Orion II’s Zodiacs adds another dimension completely.

In both 2011 and 2012 there are three scheduled nine-night Orion II Vietnam Explorer voyages alternating between Haiphong (for Hanoi) and Ho Chi Minh City and including Nha Trang, Baie de Cu Mon/Bai Nam Beach, Da Nang (for My Son and Hoi An), Chan May (for Hue) and Ha Long Bay & Cat Ba. 2011 departures are 18th November, 27th November and 6th December while 2012 departures are 12th, 21st and 30th March.

Prices start from £4,295 per person including nine nights onboard Orion, all meals, entertainment and educational programmes, use of the ship’s sporting equipment and facilities, Zodiac excursions, port and handling charges, tender transfers and government fees and taxes.

For further information visit http://www.orionexpeditions.com/ or The Cruise Line.










Tuesday, 7 June 2011

This picture is taken at Deception Island in the South Shetlands, Antarctica. The Island is actualy the crater rim of an active voclano where the sea has broken through. Therefore the water is warmer inside the caldera than the surrounding Antarctic Ocean . Note the small yachts that have sailed across Drakes Passage!!

Monday, 6 June 2011

Sail the Kvarner Coastline of Croatia

On the go tours have a cruise pulling up anchor  at Opatija in northern Croatia, sailing the picturesque Kvarner coastline and visiting the islands of Krk, Losinj, Cres and Rab, known as the island of love! With plenty of sun & beach stops, spoil yourself with a week of coastal bliss.
Travelling on a sometimes masted, rigged wooden sailing boat (with onboard motor power) with a range of facilities including dining area and plenty of deck space to enjoy the spectacular views and sea breeze, you'll be in the company of like-minded travellers. Relax as you let the captain and his support crew look after your needs. An onboard cook prepares breakfast and lunch each day, whilst in the evening, the cruise offers you the chance to explore dining options at the numerous ports of call.

For more information visit http://www.onthegotours.com/

Sunday, 5 June 2011

Yoga and Chilling out on the High Seas

Tall ship specialist Star Clippers has added two new dates to its programme of yoga and meditation themed cruises in summer 2011. Yoga expert Christel Vollmer will now be on board the head-turning tall ship `Star Flyer’ cruising the western Mediterranean on 1st and 8th October 2011, as well as the existing dates of 6th and 13th August, when the ship cruises the Greek Islands and Turkey’s coastline.

The two new yoga cruises are the `Tyrhennian’, which departs Monte Carlo on October 1st, 2011 and calls at Calvi, Bonifacio, Costa Smeralda, Giglio (Italy), Lerici (for Florence) and St Tropez, ending in Cannes. And `Spain and the Balearic Islands’, departing Cannes on October 8, 2011 and calling at Mahon, Pollenca, Formentera and Cartagena. This itinerary includes two days at sea for extra relaxation and contemplation.

Prices for all four yoga cruises are from £1,295 per person, including port taxes, all yoga classes and all meals on board on the ship. Prices exclude flights.

All four cruises include free daily Astanga (power) yoga and meditation sessions on deck in the cool morning air, with a second session just before sunset, including meditation. The yoga and meditation sessions are hosted by Christel Vollmer, who will also deliver lectures on the philosophy of yoga and advice for practice at home. For those who want to follow a healthy or vegetarian diet during the cruise, Star Clippers’ usual sumptuous breakfast buffets, piled with fresh, seasonal fruits, and magnificent arrays of salads at lunchtime will be available, as well as vegetarian choices at dinner.

Astanga yoga is a dynamic and powerful style of yoga based on a sequence of easy-to-learn movements called asanas. Christel’s classes, which take place in English, will be suitable for all levels and no prior experience is required. There is no upper age limit for practicing yoga; Christel herself is in her fifties, with many years of teaching experience, having trained under West Coast-based Bryan Kest, yoga guru to stars including Madonna, Cindy Crawford and Sting.

Contact Star Clippers on http://www.starclippers.co.uk/ or visit the Cruise Line

Saturday, 4 June 2011



Hawaii bound holidaymakers have an extra incentive to book an inter-island yacht cruise aboard American Safari Cruises’ 36-guest Safari Explorer. To celebrate its inaugural season in Hawaii, the line is offering guests a $150 per person travel credit for reservations made from June through July 29, 2011.

Sailing weeklong or 10-night active, adventure itineraries between Maui and the Big Island from November 2011 through April 2012, the all-inclusive, upscale 36-guest Safari Explorer visits Moloka’i, Lana’i and Molokini.


Guests who book between June and July 29, 2011 will receive a travel credit of $150 per person or $300 per couple. The credit is intended to help guests defray air costs to the Hawaiian Islands where they will embark on their adventure cruise.


Flexible yacht itineraries focus on the leeward side of the eastern-most Hawaiian Islands. The unstructured itinerary allows time for seeking wildlife such as Manta rays, dolphins and humpback whales. Outfitted for active adventures, the yacht’s well stocked water sports equipment includes kayaks, paddle boards, snorkeling gear, wet suits, sailboats and inflatable skiffs for up-close excursions. Guided snorkeling tours are a highlight throughout the trip. Two knowledgeable expedition leaders guide hiking and kayaking tours. Bicycles are also available for guest use on Moloka’i and Lana’i.
 
Fares start at $4,995 for the seven-night cruise and $6,495 for the 10-night cruise, both per person, double occupancy. Itineraries feature exclusive excursions and include all from-the-yacht activities and equipment; transfers; exquisite meals; fine wine, premium spirits and microbrews; and all port charges, taxes and fees. An all-American crew has a guest-crew ratio of 2 to 1 and includes Hawaii residents who have personal knowledge of the islands. To book a Hawaiian yachting adventure or to request additional information visit http://www.americansafaraicruises.com/

Friday, 3 June 2011

Windstar's New Cruises

Windstar Cruises, operator of a three-ship fleet of luxury yachts, has unveiled its new 2012 collection of luxury voyages in the Caribbean, Costa Rica, Baltic, Italy, Mediterranean and Greek Isles, with nine new itineraries and the lowest introductory pricing in years.

In addition, guests who book by June 30 will receive a $200 shipboard credit per cabin. Windstar’s Foremast Members receive an additional 5% discount on all itineraries.

The 2012 programme features a unique collection of islands, highlighting diverse countries, styles, landscapes and cultures of the Caribbean. For example, seven-night sailings on Wind Surf round-trip from Philipsburg, St Maarten, visit Le Marin, Martinique; Pigeon Island, St Lucia; Roseau, Dominica; Falmouth Harbour, Antigua; and Gustavia, St Barts, with cruise-only prices from £1,577 per person.

Or how about the Treasures of Northern Europe? Discover six of the region's most captivating countries with 11-night sailings on Wind Surf between Lisbon and Oslo, visiting Le Havre, Dover, Antwerp and Amsterdam and cruise-only prices from £2,376 per person.

Windstar’s 2012 voyages are available to book now. For more info, visit www.windstarcruises.com

Thursday, 2 June 2011

Samurai and Snorkelling

Join the Orion Expedition team onboard the newly re-fitted Orion II for her maiden Ryukyu Islands voyage exploring from Japan through the rarely visited sub-tropical Ryukyu Islands to the Philippines and Sabah.
This 14-night voyage on July 28 features diverse elements for adventurous spirits seeking cultural experiences far removed from the predictable tourist hotspots of Asia, including two destinations unique to this voyage, Shimonoseki and Kagoshima, plus a visit to Coron Palawan in the Philippines, the first by a foreign ship.
Guests can try their hand at the fine art of preparing Fugu – poisonous puffer fish - warm their feet in a volcanic-heated foot bath, explore an impressive cave and underground river system and remove their clothes and inhibitions in a very elegant private hot spring onsen (public bath).

Active volcanoes and traditional samurai castles contrast with beautiful bays and islands perfect for snorkelling and diving, while a buffalo cart ride across tidal flats, cultural performances, art galleries and exploring a little township with bars and cafes offer other dimensions to this voyage.
Reminders of World War II abound, including visits to Hiroshima and Nagasaki, as well as a fascinating Kamikaze museum and, in Okinawa, a former Japanese Imperial Navy HQ underground tunnel command centre. The significant red Shuri Castle has many ancient links to the unique system of paying tribute to both Japanese and Chinese emperors and an archaeological dig site guests may visit contains some of the oldest human remains found in Asia.

Orion II’s visit to Coron Palawan will be celebrated with welcoming cultural displays, performances and interaction. Guests will have time for snorkelling, relaxing in hot springs, a village visit and scenic Zodiac cruising to capture the dramatic sunset.

Lecturers in the expedition team include:
Amy Loewen - Japan expert, many years of experience leading groups in Japan
Grace Winer - expert geologist to provide interpretation on the regions stunning and active geology
Justin Friend - to lecture on Filipino and Ryukyu cultures
Expedition Leader Alastair Newton - with many years experience in the region.

The 14-night cruise also visits San Fernando (for Baguio), Puerto Galera and Coron before finishing in Kota Kinabalu. Prices start from £6,680 per person including all meals, entertainment and educational programmes, use of the ship’s sporting equipment and facilities, Zodiac excursions, port and handling charges, tender transfers and government fees and taxes.
For more info, visit http://www.orionexpeditions.com/ or contact the UK's leading adventure cruise specialists of The Cruise Line Ltd on 0800 008 6677.

Wednesday, 1 June 2011

STATEMENT REGARDING CANCELATION OF MS POLAR STAR SPITSBERGEN SEASON

Karlsen shipping the owners of MV Polar Star have been placed into receivership and Hurtigruten has therefore cancelled all MV Polar Star sailings in Spitsbergen for summer 2011. Hurtigruten’s sister company, Spitsbergen Travel AS had chartered the explorer ship MV Polar Star to offer weekly voyages around Spitsbergen.
 
Spitsbergen Travel and Hurtigruten ASA worked together with the creditors of Karlsen shipping to find a solution that would enable them to continue the Spitsbergen voyages in 2011 with Polar Star. Unfortunately, despite best endeavors, it was not possible to reach a resolution. There were also efforts to charter an alternative ship but again, without any success.

Hurtigruten ASA and Spitsbergen Travel are deeply sorry the disappointment and inconvenience that this will causes its guests.
 
857 guests booked on 11 sailings are affected by this incident. 512 guests are Germans, 65 from France, 111 from England, 61 from the US, 87 Norwegians and 21 other nationalities.

Along with a full refund, customers wishing to re-book on to another Hurtigruten products are being offered discounts on other voyages if booked before 31 July 2011. Discounts are as follows:

1. 50% off new bookings made on any Hurtigruten product for travel up to and completed by 31 December 2012 for cruise only products.

2. 40% off new bookings made on any Hurtigruten product for travel up to and completed by 31 December 2012 for flight inclusive products.

This offer is not combinable with any other Hurtigruten offers (e.g. Ambassador Loyalty programme repeater discount, Groups discounts and early booking discounts) and is valid for bookings made up to and including the 31st of July 2011.

For more infopramtion about Hurtigruten cruises vist http://www.hurtigruten.co.uk/ or The Cruise Line.
Hapag-Lloyd Cruises announces the arrival of their March 2012 - May 2013 expedition brochure. Their small and beautifully appointed expedition ships, MS HANSEATIC and MS BREMEN, will be offering 12 international (English/German) itineraries next season.

They include travel in Antarctica, the Northwest Passage, Greenland, Spitsbergen, Norway, the Amazon, the South Seas and New Zealand. In addition, the expedition itineraries feature new ports of call in Madagascar and Mozambique and a maiden voyage through theSea of Okhotsk inRussia’s Far East. The HANSEATIC, the world’s only 5-star expedition ship and the BREMEN, a 4-star expedition ship, were created to provide intensive exploration in the most elegant surroundings for a maximum of 184 guests on the HANSEATIC and 164 guests on the BREMEN





Expedition Highlights 2012 – 2013 on the HANSEATIC and BREMEN:
SEA OF OKHOTSK - PREMIER EXPEDITIONS

For the first time, the HANSEATIC sets out to circumnavigate the Sea of Okhotsk in Russia’s Far East, taking guests to volcanoes, geysers and glaciers. Zodiac stops on the Sea of Okhotsk include: Iony, a tiny island populated by sea lions and Shantar Islands and Malminskie Islandsnatural sanctuaries for songbirds, birds of prey, seals and sea otters.

Trip Details from June 13-30, 2012, rates for this itinerary start at EUR 9.007 / GBP 6.310 / USD 10.810 per person/ based on double occupancy for an outside cabin

ISLANDS IN THE INDIAN OCEAN – MAIDEN CALLS:

Guests will experience lemurs in pristine nature, animals in the wild, and wonderful beaches on romantic coasts on the HANSEATIC through Mauritius, Madagascar, Mozambique and South Africa.This tropic 16-day adventure will make stops at six new ports along the route, which include stops in the following ports in Madagascar: Maroantsetra, Nosy Hara, Morondava, Nosy Ve,and Toliara and a first time stop in Mozambique, at the picturesque city of Ilha dos Portugueses.

Trip Details: from December 3-19, 2012, rates for this itinerary start at EUR 6.451 / GBP 4.520 / USD 7.750 per person/ based on double occupancy for an outside cabin

THE NORTHWEST PASSAGE: In 2012, the popular Northwest Passage will be offered onboard the HANSEATIC. It starts in Nome/Alaska amidst impressive testimonies of the Inuit culture before the HANSEATIC sails through the Canadian Arctic, the heart of the Northwest Passage and ends in Reykjavik/Iceland.

Trip Details: from August 14 - September 8, 2012, rates for this 25-day itinerary start at EUR 16.480 / GBP 11.540 / USD 19.780 per person/ based on double occupancy for an outside cabin

ANTARCTICA;Glaciers, icebergs, deep fjords and bays offer the setting for an unforgettable Antarctica expedition. In addition to observing bird colonies, guests will also have the opportunity to explore the Falkland Islands and South Georgia, bath in the hot springs on Deception Island and observe whales in the Antarctic Sound. All departs include round-trip airfare from Buenos Aires/Argentina to Ushuaia/Argentina. Dates and rates for the Antarctica cruises’ in late 2012 and early 2013: Trip Details: November 30 - December 15, 2012, on the BREMEN, rates starting at EUR 7.680 / GBP 5.380 / USD 9.220 per person/ based on double occupancy for an outside cabin
Trip Details: January 3 - 18, 2013, on the BREMEN, rates starting at EUR 8.580 / GBP 6.010 / USD 10.300 per person/ based on double occupancy for an outside cabin.

Trip Details: February 13 - March 3, 2013, on the HANSEATIC, rates starting at EUR 10.628 / GBP 7.440 / USD 12.760 per person/ based on double occupancy for an outside cabin.

Expedition Travel At Its Best:

Both ships are well equipped for travel in difficult waters, holding the highest ice class ranking for passenger vessels (E4). Also shallow drafts and high manoeuvrability allow the ships to enter waters larger cruise vessels cannot reach. Guests explore the world’s best-kept secrets in zodiacs (small motorized boats) with only 10-12 guests. Onboard experts include a team of experienced scientists, expedition leaders and specialists who guide landings and offer guests the rare opportunity to observe plant and animal life up close. However, what makes these expedition adventures standout for guests is the security of knowing that highly experienced captains are guiding the vessels and have together already traveled to the Arctic and Antarctica more than 200 times.

Educational experiences are the ultimate goals of the expedition trips. Thereby also, Hapag-Lloyd Cruises is committed to promoting a responsible way of dealing with nature – among other efforts as a co-founder of the Association of Arctic Expedition Cruise Operators (AECO) and member of the International Association of Antarctica Tour Operators (IAATO). In addition, the HANSEATIC and the BREMEN use low-emission diesel oil rather than heavy fuel oil on cruises to Antarctica, and have been doing so long before the introduction of the current, stricter regulations.

Further Information at http://www.hl-cruises.com/.