National Geographic Explorer & National Geographic Orion

Cruise ship National Geographic Explorer in Bergen, Norway

Today is the Norwegian Constitution day, and there were total of four cruise ships in town to witness and join in with the festivities (and to let their passengers get stuck in the crowds).

Two of these were a pair of small ships operated by Lindblad Expeditions under the National Geographic brand; National Geographic Explorer and National Geographic Orion.

Also in town were Marco Polo and AIDAsol.

National Geographic Explorer was originally built in 1982 as Midnatsol for Hurtigruten, and stayed in service with them on the express route along the coast of Norway until 2007 (for the past few years of this she sailed as Lyngen. She has a near sister in VesterĂ¥len, which at the time of writing still sails in the main Hurtigruten fleet.

In 2008 Lyngen became National Geographic Explorer, and entered service in her current role as an expedition cruise ship. She has a gross tonnage of 6,471 and can accommodate just 148 passengers on a wide range of voyages.

Cruise ship National Geographic Explorer in Bergen, Norway

Cruise ship National Geographic Explorer in Bergen, Norway

Cruise ship National Geographic Explorer in Bergen, Norway

Cruise ship National Geographic Explorer in Bergen, Norway

Cruise ship National Geographic Explorer in Bergen, Norway

National Geographic Orion was purpose-built as an expedition cruise ship in 2003, and has sailed for a variety of operators, but always under her original name. In 2014 she joined the Lindblad fleet and was given her current name.

She is just 103m long, comes in at under 4,000 tonnes, and carries up to 106 passengers, served by a crew of 75.

Cruise ship National Geographic Orion in Bergen, Norway

Cruise ship National Geographic Orion in Bergen, Norway

Cruise ship National Geographic Orion in Bergen, Norway

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