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Hurtigruten Cruise Line - Europe, Norway, Greenland & Antarctica Cruises
Hurtigurten Cruises offer unique sailings for the traveller seeking something new and different.
Are those Caribbean islands all starting to look alike? Have you taken an Alaskan cruise and now want something more? Hurtigruten's Antarctic, Norway, Spitsbergen, Greenland, and European Cruises may be just what you're looking for.
Norwegian Coastal Voyage offers an Unusual opportunity for experienced travelers
I've always been proud of my Norwegian heritage but am American enough to recognize that Norwegian thinking doesn't always run in the same groove as conventional thinking - an observation that was recently confirmed in my mind. You see, I'm a travel agent and a few years ago I received notification that the cruise line "Norwegian Coastal Voyage" was officially changing its name. Most cruise lines carry names intended to inspire a sense of adventure, luxury, or fun. Take these cruise line names, for example: Royal Caribbean / Carnival / Celebrity / Silversea. Norwegian Coastal Voyage's new name? Hurtigruten (pronounced Her-te-grew-ten) which is the name of the 115 year old parent company; it seems that carrying two separate names was creating too many hassles to deal with.
When you think "Hurtigruten", do images of white sand beaches and fancy drinks with paper umbrellas come jumping to mind? No? Well, that's probably for the best. The cruise industry is booming right now and the main cruise lines are dredging harbors in the Caribbean and renting private islands in the Bahamas faster than you can say, "Pass the sunscreen". Hertigruten is also moving expanding their cruise offerings in new and unexpected ways - for example, a couple of years ago, they offered a 67-Day Arctic-to-Antarctica cruise (not currently available) to their list of itineraries! You read that right. I didn't say 6-to-7 Day cruise - it really was a 67 Day cruise. This cruise visited 44 ports in 17 countries. They broke the trip into segments so that people did't have to sign on for the whole thing but 60% of the passengers for the maiden voyage signed on for the full 67 Days. It was such a rip-roaring success that the company plans to offer it again some time, although this particular itinerary is not currently being offered.
Incidentally, the ship that made this voyage was the MS Fram. Can't you just picture the looks of green-eyed envy you would've received when you told your friends that you were headed to the Arctic on the Hertigruten Fram?
The English and German portions of my brain find this whole thing funny and a little surreal. Then the Norwegian strands in my DNA start firing up and I find myself thinking, "You know, I've never been to Antarctica. I wonder what they serve for lunch."
Hertigruten reports that the majority of guests who set out on that grand adventure were over 55 and were experienced international travelers. The MS Fram is a smaller ship and the cruise was really all about the destinations. This was an amazing opportunity for anyone who enjoys travel off the beaten path. It must've been great to see a lot of wonderful locations without having to coordinate a ton of travel details.
There are a lot of other great adventures being offered among Hurtigruten's current itineraries with most of the cruises ranging from 4-Days to 19-Days. The sailing that currently piques my interest is the 12-Day "Fjord Highlights and the Viking Trail" cruise. If this sounds a little too adventurous for you, one of their shorter European cruises might be more within your comfort zone. What ever you decide, you're certain to find ports that offer more than the same old duty free shopping and bus tours. And you're certain to gain some bragging rights amoung your cruising buddies.
To find out more, call your travel agent or check out the Hurtigruten website.
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