National Geographic Explorer - Berlitz Cruising & Cruise Ships 2017 (Berlitz Cruise Guide) (2016)

Berlitz Cruising & Cruise Ships 2017 (Berlitz Cruise Guide) (2016)

National Geographic Explorer


Berlitz’s Ratings

Ship: 281 out of 500

Accommodation: 110 out of 200

Food: 195 out of 400

Service: 232 out of 400

Entertainment: 62 out of 100

Cruise: 232 out of 400

Overall Score: 1112 out of 2000

National Geographic Explorer Statistics

Size: Small Ship

Tonnage: 6,471

Lifestyle: Standard

Cruise Line: Lindblad Expeditions

Former Names: Lyngen, Midnatsol II, Midnatsol

IMO Number: 8019356

Builder: Ulstein Hatlo (Norway)

Original Cost: n/a

Entered Service: 1982/Jun 2008

Registry: The Bahamas

Length (ft/m): 367.4/112.0

Beam (ft/m): 54.1/16.5

Draft (ft/m): 15.0/4.5

Propulsion/Propellers: diesel/2

Passenger Decks: 6

Total Crew: 70

Passengers (lower beds): 148

Passenger Space Ratio (lower beds): 43.7

Passenger/Crew Ratio (lower beds): 2.1

Cabins (total): 81

Size Range (sq ft/m): n/a

Cabins (for one person): 14

Cabins (with private balcony): 13

Cabins (wheelchair accessible): 1

Wheelchair accessibility: None

Cabin Current: 110 volts

Elevators: 1

Casino (gaming tables): No

Slot Machines: No

Swimming Pools: 0

Hot Tubs (on deck): 0

Self-Service Launderette: No

Dedicated Cinema/Seats: No

Library: Yes

Onboard currency: US$


A small, sturdy ship for nature and wildlife cruises

Overview. National Geographic Explorer suits hardy, adventurous types who enjoy being with nature and wildlife in some of the most interesting and occasionally inhospitable places on earth, cosseted aboard a small but comfortable ship.

The Ship. Originally built as Midnatsol for Hurtigruten, the ship was purchased by Lindblad Expeditions in 2007 and extensively refitted and outfitted well for expedition-style cruising, with some really good facilities and expedition equipment.

The ship has an ice-strengthened hull and is quite stable due to the stabilizers, so movement is minimized. Twin funnel uptakes are located almost at the very stern - an unusual design. There is little outdoor deck space, but it’s not needed in cold-weather areas.

The main facilities include a lecture room and bistro bar with espresso machine adjacent to the restaurant, and boot-washing stations. An expedition voyage aboard this ship is all about learning and exploration. The dress code is totally casual; layered clothing and sturdy outer wear is recommended. Gratuities to staff are not included in the price.

Accommodation. The price you pay depends on size and location. The cabins are small, as are the bathrooms, although they are nicely designed, practical units. Some have a fixed queen-size bed configuration, others have twin beds (some can be pushed together, some are fixed). There are several cabins for single occupancy. The tiled bathrooms have shower enclosures, and small shelves for toiletries. Suites have two washbasins, premium bedding, and feather-fluffy duvets.

There is a decent supply of electrical outlets and an ethernet connection for laptops. Closet doors are of the sliding type instead of the outward opening type, to minimize noise and banging when the ship is in tough weather conditions. Naturally, a National Geographic Atlas is provided.

Dining. There is one main dining room, as well as areas for self-serve buffet-style food. The food is hearty and fairly healthy, although you should not expect to find fresh greens in some of the more out-of-the-way areas.

Entertainment. Lectures, briefings and recaps, plus after-dinner conversation with fellow participants are the main entertainment - if you’re not too tired after exhausting days of landings and other adventures.

Spa/Fitness. There are two body treatment rooms - with skylights, for wildlife-inspired wellness, facials, and massage, including a special ‘ice-bear massage,’ as well as a fitness/workout room.