Category Archives: Ship Spotlight

Where are the small ships on Christmas Day?

Merry Christmas to all who celebrate. And a good movie and chinese food to those who celebrate Hanukkah

We have done some fun research as to where some of my favorite small ships are sailing on Christmas Day. To the best of my knowledge, every one of these ships were sold out, sailing at 100% occupancy. We have Christmas bookings for 2011 and 2011. It is not to early to start planning.

American Glory – Lake George, Ocala National Forest, Florida

American Safari Explorer- Kona Big Island, for Christmas 2011
American Safari Quest – whale watching, Baja

Cruceros Australis – Stella Australis – Punta Arenas – Chile
Cruceros Australis – Via Australis = Cape Horn – Argentina
Cruceros Australis – Mare Australlis – Patagonia – Argentina

I.E. Evolution – Espanola Islands, sea lions, Galapagos

Le Diamant – sailing Vietnam, South East Asia
Le Levant – sailing Trinidad
Le Ponet – sailing Persian Gulf

Lindblad Expeditions Salacia – sailing Egypt

National Geographic Endeavour – Santa Cruz Charles Darwin Station Galapagos
National Geographic Explorer – sailing Antarctica
National Geographic Islander – Seymour Island, Galapagos
National Geographic Sea Bird – day at sea whale watching, Baja
National Geographic Sea Lion – sailing Panama Canal Transit, Costa Rica

Paul Gauguin Cruises m/s Paul Gauguin—Moorea, Society Islands (French Polynesia)

Regent Seven Seas Navigator—sea day; from Cabo San Lucas to Zihuatanejo, Mexico

SeaDream Yacht Club SeaDream I—Jost van Dyke, British Virgin Islands
SeaDream Yacht Club SeaDream II—Coconut Grove, Nevis

Silversea Prince Albert II—South Georgia, Antarctica

Cruise West Spirit of Oceanus/Sea Spirit will sail again

Cruise West Spirit of Oceanus gets new life…Sea Spirit

 Cruise West, Spirit of Oceanus sold to a charter company who re named her Sea Spirit is going to get a new life and sail again.

Quark will charter her to temporarily take the place of their present charter which is in dry dock being repaired.

She will replace the Clipper Adventurer who ran around during her Arctic 2010 season. That incident led to the cancellation of  first three scheduled voyages of the 2010-11 Antarctic season. The repairs to Clipper Adventurer will take longer than previously expected. As a result,  Sea Spirit, formerly known as Spirit of Oceanus, for the Antarctic 2010-2011 season. Sea Spirit will be used instead of Clipper Adventurer, taking over Clipper Adventurer’s scheduled voyages.

Her first voyage as a Quark Expeditions vessel will be the 20-day Explorers’ Quest .  Sea Spirit will carry a maximum of 120 passengers. She is equipped with rigid inflatable boats – RIBs – for shore transfers and cruising. The RIB fleet is comprised of Achilles and Zodiac boats.  

Once the Clipper Adventurer is repaired the Sea Spirit will be sent home for a new company to use her.

Quark’s Quality Adventure Coupled with Unsurpassed Comfort and Style

Sea Spirit guests sail in the most spacious cabins in our fleet and have a choice of one King Size bed or two twin beds. All 57 cabins have private facilities and exterior views. Fifteen of the cabins have private balconies for viewing the extraordinary Antarctic icescape. While enjoying the excitement of Quark’s 20-day Explorers’ Quest, your clients can phone home on the in-room phone with satellite access. Every cabin has individual temperature controls, a sitting area, refrigerator and in-room safe.

Sea Spirit has 7 cabin categories, including triple cabins and the very spacious Owner’s Suite.

Hawaii – Small ship cruise sails the islands

American Safari Cruises Introduces Exclusive and Inclusive Hawaiian Island Adventures for 2011

Action Packed Exploration in Maui, Moloka’i, Molokini, Lana’i and Hawaii
SEATTLE, Oct. 26 /PRNewswire/ — American Safari Cruises , best known for offering compelling yachting adventures in Alaska and Mexico’s Baja, introduces “authentic Hawaii,” fall 2011. Choose from the 7-night Hawaiian Seascapes and the 10-night Hawaii’s Traditional Shores, both boasting active adventures and cultural exchanges designed to thoroughly engage guests’ senses and take full advantage of the islands attributes as no other cruise can do.

Hawaii is a natural extension to the 13-year-old company’s existing product line-up given the rich marine mammal environment and opportunities to kayak, hike, snorkel, sail, bike, stand-up paddle board and more. American Safari Cruises is the first operator to offer unstructured inter-island yacht cruising in Hawaii, where the next port may not be a port at all, but a magical passage rich with wildlife, a secluded and inviting beach or a quiet cove that beckons to be explored. After a day of action, adventurers can ease tired muscles in the sauna or soak in the on-deck hot tub aboard the elegant 36-guest Safari Explorer.

Paradise shows its true colors via genuine and rewarding experiences that would be virtually impossible to do on one’s own. Both the 7- and 10-night itineraries cruise from Lahaina, Maui to Kona, Hawaii or reverse and feature whale viewing; exploring cliff-lined bays and beaches around the private island of Lana’i; visiting ancient Hawaiian homelands of Moloka’i to enjoy a private Hawaiian Pa’ina (feast); hiking on the Laparuse Trail to view ancient ruins and seizing the rare opportunity to night snorkel in the marine rich environment of Molokini; and strolling on Black Sand Beach near the southernmost tip of the United States, Ka Lae, Hawaii. In addition, optional activities such as scuba diving, helicopter tours, mule ride and golfing are available at select locales.

The 10-night Hawaii’s Traditional Shores also includes three days of island exploration on Hawaii, allowing for ample time to explore this volcanic landmass by foot and small water craft, finesse kayaking skills, seek out Green Sea Turtles and other sea life or lounge on a quiet secluded beach to soak up the fine Hawaiian sunshine.

The 36-guest Safari Explorer offers an on-deck hot tub, sauna, exercise equipment, two-person kayaks, stand-up paddle boards, sail boats, snorkeling equipment and motorized shore boats for close-up exploration, a wine library, and a large-screen TV in the main salon. Exceptional cuisine is prepared with fresh, local ingredients, and the complimentary bar offers premium spirits, fine wines and microbrews. All staterooms offer Tempur-pedic mattresses, flat screen TV/DVD players and iPod docks. The guest-crew ratio is 2 to 1, with an all-American crew that includes two professional naturalists, masseuse and Captain – some who hail from the Hawaiian islands.

The inaugural Hawaiian cruise departs October 26, 2011 with weekly departures through mid-May 2012.

Inclusive prices start at $4,995 for 7-night cruises and $6,495 for 10-nights.

Alaska, Cruise West ships get new life

New cruise line to launch in Alaska with ships from failed Cruise West

By Gene Sloan, USA TODAY

An Alaskan company with a long history in the boating business has announced plans to launch a new small ship cruise line in the state.

As was first reported today by industry watcher Travel Weekly, the new line will be called Alaskan Dream Cruises and operate two vessels that until last month were part of the Cruise West fleet.

Cruise West, one of the most storied names in Alaska tourism, collapsed in September after years of dominating small ship cruising in the state.

Alaskan Dream Cruises is being launched by Sitka, Alaska-based Allen Marine Tours, which has operated day tours in the state since the 1970s and also owns a boatbuilding business. The new line will operate Cruise West’s 78-passenger Spirit of Columbia and Spirit of Alaska, which will be renamed the Admiralty Dream and Baranof Dream.

A third vessel, a 49-passenger catamaran to be called the Alaska Dream, also will be part of the Alaskan Dream Cruises fleet, the line says.

Cruise Report: Great Western River Cruise

Aboard the Queen of the West, Sept 25 – Oct 2, 2010

If you want a cruise steeped in history, this is for you. We had watched the Ken Burns video prior to going, and it was immensely helpful in understanding the magnitude of the Lewis & Clark 4000 mile exploration in 1804-1806. Traveling up the Columbia River while hearing an on-board narration by a local historian gave us a vivid sense of the trials they experienced, and of the historic discoveries they made (over 200 species of animals and plants never before seen). To hear about their survival while undergoing extreme weather conditions, lack of food from time to time, successful travel through unknown territory controlled by many different Indian nations (some hostile), and terrain most difficult and inhospitable gave us an appreciation of modern luxuries. These Indian nations lived, hunted, and traded for more than 10,000 years in The Dalles area near the Bonneville Dam (erected 135 years later). Read the rest of this entry

Brand New Mississippi Sternwheeler

Guilford, CT – American Cruise Lines has announced it is expanding to the Mississippi River system with a brand new sternwheeler, already under construction at Chesapeake Shipbuilding in Salisbury, MD. It plans to operate the new riverboat on routes similar to those formerly run by Delta Queen Steamboat Company, which will include the Mississippi, Ohio, Tennessee, and Cumberland Rivers. Cruising the Mississippi River on a sternwheeler is a true all-American experience that American Cruise Lines is pleased to bring back. The new paddlewheeler will recreate the grandeur of past riverboats while possessing the latest safety, environmental and construction technologies. The ship will have the look of a traditional riverboat along with more amenities, a faster speed, and an unmatched level of comfort. Features include six unique lounges, a library, an elegant dining salon, elevator service to all decks, and the exceptionally large staterooms found on all American Cruise Lines ships. With only 140 passengers, each guest will receive personalized service in the intimate and friendly atmosphere for which American Cruise Lines has become known.

 The first cruise is a scheduled to depart August 11, 2012 from New Orleans, Louisiana on a 7-night journey up the Mississippi to Memphis, Tennessee. The ship will then begin a series of 7-night cruises travelling as far north as St. Paul, Minnesota while utilizing its remarkable speed to open up new itinerary possibilities. As on all true riverboats, a stage and bow ramp will give the ship access to the many interesting ports without docking facilities.

 American Cruise Lines has experienced record bookings in 2010 and has seen an increasing demand from passengers to bring their style of cruising to the Mississippi and tributary rivers. The company decided to introduce a new riverboat so that it could offer its superior style of cruising to the Mississippi River.

 American Cruise Lines will soon usher in a new era of Mississippi riverboats that will set the standard for years to come. For details on the best Mississippi River experience aboard the finest riverboat in the world please call an American Cruise Lines cruise specialist at 888-815-5428.

Atlantic Coastal Sailings

Inside Look at National Geographic Explorer

I’ve come across a couple of videos that show both the lifestyle and what you’ll see onboard the National Geographic Explorer.

Adventure ship spends day in Yorktown

Ship Spotlight: Spirit of Yorktown

Cruise West's Spirit of Yorktown

Specifications:

Current Name: Spirit of Yorktown
Former Names: Yorktown Clipper
Built: 1988
Last Refurbished: 2007
Registry: United States
Tonnage: 2,354 tons
Length: 257 ft.
Beam (Width): 43 ft.
Draft (Depth): 8 ft.
Passengers: 138
Crew: 40

Overview

The Spirit of Yorktown is a boutique small ship currently owned & operated by Cruise West. The ship, built in 1988, is designed to sail coastal and inland waterways. Due to the ship’s short draft (the depth the ship’s bow sits in the water), the ship can easily maneuver where larger ships only dream; cozy coves, inland rivers and closer to glaciers and wildlife.

Recent Refurbishments

The Spirit of Yorktown was last refurbished in December 2007. Four Balcony-category cabins were created that include private teak-floored balconies with enough room for a café table and chairs for two. Numerous additional upgrades include redecoration and renovation of public corridors, lobby areas, and the panoramic Observation Lounge, the ship’s Living Room. The combined cost of all renovations is more than $2 million.

Read the rest of this entry