Hurtigruten Expeditions has returned to service with the departure of MS Otto Sverdrup.
The battery-hybrid powered ship – complete with battery packs and other green technology – will operate year-round expedition cruises from Hamburg to the Norwegian coast.
It joins MS Roald Amundsen and MS Fridtjof Nansen as vessels in the fleet designed to be more environmentally friendly.
MS Otto Sverdrup’s maiden voyage from Germany is the first sailing in the line’s step-by-step restart plan.
In late September, MS Maud will start year-round UK-based expedition cruises.
In addition to the closer-to-home departures from Hamburg and Dover, Hurtigruten’s 2022/2023 winter programme also includes Antarctica, west Africa, Alaska, and from January 2022, the Galápagos Islands.
Hurtigruten Expeditions CEO Asta Lassesen said: “We are thrilled to finally be back exploring with our guests. This is a day we have all been really looking forward to after a very challenging year for the entire travel industry.
“We saw the travel industry’s global pause as a golden opportunity to invest, upgrade and improve our ships and product.
“As we return to cruising, MS Otto Sverdrup will feature a combination of advanced green technology, including new battery packs, that will ensure an even more sustainable way of exploring the Norwegian coast.
“Our guests have been extremely patient and I know they are as excited as we are. As we return to operations, the safety of our guests, crew and the communities we explore is our number one priority.
“Our stringent health and safety protocols, including our vaccination policy for all guests and crew, will ensure that everyone feels safe, protected and comfortable on board without limiting [the] experience.”
Speaking about the line’s 2022/23 season, Lassesen added: “2022 will be one of the most adventurous years for Hurtigruten Expeditions.
“We will start the year by launching our Galápagos operations in January, and at the end of the year, we will introduce our first African cruises.
“We are very excited about expanding to new unique destinations, which complements our Caribbean and South American expedition cruises and strengthens our global position.”