The line will host ocean conservationists and encourage guests not to eat whale meat
Ambassador Cruise Line has partnered up with marine conservation charity ORCA to launch the “first cruise anti-whaling campaign”.
The line will host two ORCA ocean conservationists on 11 sailings in 2022 and 2023, and will encourage guests not to eat whale meat.
There will also be no destination experiences to oceanariums that keep marine mammals in captivity.
Christian Verhounig, Chief Executive Officer at Ambassador Cruise Line has formally written to the Faroese prime minister, Bárður á Steig Nielsen, stating that if there are recurring incidents of the dolphin hunt that took place in September 2021, he will reconsider the cruise line’s three future sailings to the islands.
Ambassador will also be monitoring the outcome of the Faroes government review of its commercial whaling policy, and will “cancel such ports of call if it is deemed that activity in the destination contradicts the cruise line’s pledge”.
Christian Verhounig, said, “We at Ambassador feel incredibly passionate about supporting this cause. This joined-up approach with ORCA demonstrates our committed action in addressing this issue of unnecessary dolphin hunts and commercial whaling and to encourage change.
“This approach has been developed taking expert advice from our new partner, ORCA who we are extremely proud to be working with, and from other global experts. We are particularly confident that this represents the best approach to maximise the impact and we hope our campaign will result in a measurable effect on the commercial whaling industry and that the incident that took place on 12 September 2021 will never happen again.
“Tourism is one of the key drivers of commercial whaling and consuming whale meat poses a significant human health risk. In all of our communications to our cruise guests we will advise them to avoid consuming this product in destinations that they visit. We have also taken the decision not to include any excursions to oceanariums or experiences that involve captive marine mammals.
“We also have confidence that if activities take place which force us to reconsider our sailings and change our itineraries, our booked guests will understand and fully support our decision.”
The ocean conservationists joining 11 sailings will visit countries such as Iceland and Greenland, and will sail the Iberian coast, Black Sea and Irish Sea. During the voyages, they will collect scientific data, and offer wildlife experiences to guests.
Two of the 11 cruises will be Ambassador’s multi-generational cruises in summer 2022 where ORCA will be providing an education programme, working with families to teach them about the marine environment and involving them in some conservation projects on the ship.
ORCA will also have a permanent presence on Ambience with a dedicated enrichment area, including models of whales, dolphins and porpoises, as well as information about an OceanWatchers app so guests can experience being an ocean conservationist.
The “original coastal voyage” is now open for bookings for 2023/24
Hurtigruten Norwegian Coastal Express has launched its 2023/24 season.
The line has operated the Norwegian Coastal Express between Bergen and Kirkenes since 1893.
The 2023/24 season is now open for booking, with highlights including onboard lectures and the chance to enjoy authentic Norwegian cuisine.
More than 70 optional shore excursions will be on offer using emission-free catamarans and tour buses.
Guests will start the journey at the line’s luxurious lounge in Bergen where they can book excursions and tuck into locally-sourced food.
Hurtigruten offer guests a Northern Lights Promise: if the celestial lightshow does not make an appearance on a 12- or 11-day voyage, the line will offer another six or seven-day trip free of charge.
Hurtigruten Norway CEO Hedda Felin, said: “Hurtigruten’s Coastal Express is the original coastal voyage, and a unique way to experience the Norwegian coast. With almost 130 years of experience and history, the ship acts as a lifeline for small communities along the coast.
“Our guests can experience the ‘world’s most beautiful voyage’ on board modern and comfortable ships that also continue the tradition of carrying cargo and local passengers, a vital part of everyday life along the coast.
“Each year, we transport over 100,000 tons of goods – everything from food to medicine!
“We are very proud of operating a legacy journey with such strong traditions, but which through innovations make it sustainable, modern, and still relevant for both our international travellers, local passengers and the local businesses that rely on us for the transportation of goods.”