Expedition cruise line Australis has confirmed its intention to build a new ship to replace the Via Australis, which has been sold to Lindblad Expeditions and will leave the fleet in April.

This will leave Australis with the 210-passenger Stella Australis, and the company has said it will add a second ship by the end of 2017.

“It will offer more cabins in a streamlined, modern vessel, comparable to the Stella Australis. The new ship should be completed by the end of 2017,” said Australis in a prepared statement.

The Stella Australis was built at the ASENAV shipyard in Chile.

Jorge Rodriguez, North America market manager said: “This represents a great opportunity for Australis to increase our offerings with a faster, leaner, and more modern ship, which will be similar to the Stella Australis, the ship we launched in 2010.”