Hurtigruten just announced that it will continue to expand its offerings with the purchase of a new expedition ship, temporarily named MS Norway Explorer.
The vessel was constructed in Portugal in 2009 at the Viana do Castelo shipyard, and is currently traveling to Scandinavia. There, the ship will undergo a massive reconstruction including adapting for polar waters, upgrading the cabins, suites and public spaces for 320 guests, and adjusting the power plants and emissions in order to meet Hurtigruten’s standards.
MS Norway Explorer will then join the fleet along the Norwegian Coastal Voyage route, replacing the MS Midnatsol, which will instead sail with the MS Fram in Antarctica during the 2016-2017 season.
The purchase of the new expedition ship goes along with the company’s plan to increase its marketing and sales efforts in North America. Hurtigruten reports that it is on schedule to offer new itineraries, excursions and an expansion of its expedition leader teams over the next few years.