Hapag-Lloyd Cruises has announced that in 2014 the Hanseatic will be the first non-Russian passenger ship to traverse the Northeast Passage through the Russian Arctic.

Including a new route in the schedule requires the most precise preparation, including nautical calculations. The best cruise timings have to be determined for each destination, as well as the duration of the proposed cruise and where landings can be planned with the on-board Zodiacs.

“When we offer new destinations with our expedition ships, we have to consult alternative sources and collect all the information we can find about the planned route. We research whether there have already been excursions ashore at the cruise destination, whether it was perhaps traversed by a sailing boat and whether there are any other cruises to the destination region on offer. The fact that the expedition cruises do not call at traditional cities is also a challenge. Special excursions on land – for example in the tundra or on a remote island – are organised instead. Here we use our on-board Zodiacs,” said Thilo Natke, Captain of the Hanseatic.