The second ice-class expedition ship from Swan Hellenic has embarked on its inaugural Arctic season.
The 152-passenger Vega has sailed from Tromsø, Norway, for an 11-day exploration of the Svalbard Archipelago.
Its inaugural season will also see it explore Iceland and Greenland, as well as the Northwest Passage and northern Canada.
In late autumn, Vega will make its way to the US east coast over 12 days, taking in New York, Norfolk, Charleston, and Miami.
From November, the ship will offer a range of cultural expedition cruises of Antarctica until March 2023, after which it will sail up to the Canary Islands and western Europe.
Vega is the sister ship to Minerva. In 2023, Swan Hellenic will welcome its third ship, Diana, which is under construction at Helsinki Shipyard.
Swan Hellenic offering ‘unique’ expedition cruises
Vega features a five-megawatt diesel-electric propulsion system with selective catalytic reduction and a PC5 ice-strengthened hull.
Swan Hellenic said it has been designed to meet the “latest environmental regulations and is completely self-sufficient for up to 40 days or 8,000 nautical miles”.
In a statement, the line added that “preparations have been made to implement battery technology, which would also make it possible to operate silently”.
Vega and Minerva are equipped with exhaust gas cleaning, advanced wastewater treatment systems and the necessary waste storage facilities required for operating in sensitive polar areas.
The line’s CEO Andrea Zito said: “We are proud to bring our unique cultural expedition cruises to the Artic for the first time, welcoming Swan Hellenic enthusiasts new and old aboard our elegant second new ship to see what others don’t.
“Wowed by the relaxed comfort of her innovative and stylish design, they’ll soon realise that everything is actually focused on fully experiencing the wonderful world outside. We know they’ll love it and look forward to seeing the proof on their faces.”