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The Northeast Passage is the legendary sea route in the Arctic Ocean, which runs along the north coasts of Asia and Europe, from the Bering Strait to the White Sea. On 13 August 2014, the HANSEATIC set out from Nome/Alaska on its expedition - which included stops and stations at anchor off the Chukchi Peninsula and Wrangel Island - through the Kara Sea to Novaya Zemlya, the Barents Sea and Murmansk, which marks the end of the Northeast Passage. The cruise was fully booked, with almost 300 people on board. The 18-metre-wide ship was loaded with 70 tonnes of provisions for the guests and crew. The crew organised 22 landings and tours with the 14 on-board Zodiacs, rubber boats, which are well suited to expeditions. There were spectacular animal sightings from on board the HANSEATIC, with guests spotting polar bears and walruses. Furthermore, the ship set a new record for passenger ships: during this expedition cruise the HANSEATIC reached the northernmost point at 85°, 40.7' north and 135°, 39.6' east. At this latitude, the HANSEATIC was just 480 kilometres from the North Pole.
The expedition ship HANSEATIC
The 5-star* HANSEATIC was built to provide intensive exploration in the most elegant surroundings for a maximum of 175 guests. The design of the ship - including the highest ice class for passenger ships (E4) - allows HANSEATIC to travel to destinations previously inaccessible to a cruise ship. Guests explore the world's best-kept secrets in zodiacs (small motorized boats) with only 10-12 guests. On-board 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 travelled to the Arctic and Antarctica more than 200 times.
* According to the Berlitz Guide to Cruising and Cruise Ships 2014
Hamburg, September 2014
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