Hurtigruten has officially celebrated the naming ceremony for its newest ship, the MS Roald Amundsen, in Antarctica. The new hybrid electric-powered expedition ship was named by polar pioneer and godmother Karin Strand in Chiriguano Bay on Brabant Island, Antarctica, during a ceremony honoring the legacy of polar explorer Roald Amundsen.
A chunk of ice, replacing the traditional bottle of champagne, smashed against the ship’s bow in honor of the occasion. Also in recognition of the day, the line made a donation to the Hurtigruten Foundation to further support conservation efforts in the more than 200 destinations Hurtigruten ships visit around the world.
The new Roald Amundsen, which has a capacity of 530 guests, is specially designed to explore polar waters. In addition to a specially designed, ice-strengthened hull, the ship also incorporates large battery packs to support its low-emission engines, reducing carbon dioxide emissions by more than 20 percent, according to the cruise line. Additionally, large observation platforms on several decks provide opportunities for scenery- and wildlife-viewing. Also onboard are three restaurants with menus that aim to reflect local flavors, as well as a special pool deck with infinity pools, Jacuzzis and cocktail bars. The ship is the first to sail on battery power, and the first hybrid electric-powered ship to traverse the Northwest Passage.
After completing the 2019 – 2020 Antarctica season, the Roald Amundsen will spend its 2020 summer season in Alaska. A second hybrid electric-powered expedition ship, the MS Fridtjof Nansen, will join Hurtigruten’s fleet in 2020.