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43 Hurtigruten MS Roald Amundsen Cruise Reviews

It is with some trepidation that my departure date for the Roald Amundsen cruise to Antarctica, Chilean Fjords and the Falklands approached (Feb.2020). This was due to some pretty horrendous reviews (see Cruise Critic) that the ship ... Read More
It is with some trepidation that my departure date for the Roald Amundsen cruise to Antarctica, Chilean Fjords and the Falklands approached (Feb.2020). This was due to some pretty horrendous reviews (see Cruise Critic) that the ship received in its maiden voyages particularly to Greenland, Canada and the Northwest Passage. My fears were only alleviated when much improved reviews began to come out of the trips from Antarctica. I had also contacted Hurtigruten myself with my concerns and received a letter from them saying how they had addressed the issues of criticism put forth by previous passengers. And I must say Hurtigruten were on the ball in most aspects! This was my third Hurtigruten expedition and it was everything that I had hoped for and then some! The Amundsen is a fantastic ship with soft décor and beautiful Nordic touches. The facilities would rival any large cruise ship and in fact were better than many! The cabin, I upgrade to an Expedition Suite, was spacious, the beds to die for and the bathroom probably one of the largest on any cruise that I have been on. My only complaint was the measly size of the bath towels! A definite disappointment! Being a Suite passenger, I was able to eat either in the Main restaurant, the Aune, or the Lindstrom without any extra charge. The food, although obviously a very subjective topic, was not to my taste, too much fish, seafood, wild boar, venison although you are able to get a decent chicken breast if asked. The service, while excellent, felt very rushed in both restaurants as if they wanted to clear you away to set up for breakfast. A quiet word with the serving staff did slow them down in the Lindstrom though. The menu in the Lindstrom stays the same for 7 days which is fine if you eat there on occasion, but as a Suite passenger it became rather monotonous especially when you are as picky as I am! It would be nice to have the menu rotated more as I ended up eating chicken breasts most of the voyage. Freidheim was excellent with lovely international bites. Again, had the menu been more extensive, I would have eaten there more often. The Pilipino serving staff and crew were some of the best that I have ever had on a cruise, always willing to do anything for you. People need to understand that the Hurtigruten lines are not like your average cruise as there is not laid on entertainment although there are a few fun evenings. If that is what people are looking for, they will be disappointed. However, if you wish to be educated, involved in science and truly learn about the sites where you will visit then the Amundsen and indeed all of the Hurtigruten ships will not disappoint. The Expedition Team are truly inspirational and will leave you wanting more. They offer not only fantastic lectures throughout the day on the sites, wildlife, geography all by graduates and experts in their fields, but they map out and lead the landings and are there to answer any of your questions. They are what make these cruises out of this world. The dress code is casual which also makes for a very comfortable and friendly atmosphere on board. Antarctica should be on the “bucket list” for everyone. It is surreal in all aspects and it is very hard to describe except to say that going there is worth every penny spent and the long hours getting there. What let my expedition down was the fact that there was one convention on board; a group of 200 Australian health care professionals (doctors, nurses, dentists) and a group of very boisterous Travel Agents for the U.S.A. Had I known these large groups would have been on board, I certainly would have changed my date of departure. Not only were they cliquey, they had a tendency to overpower the facilities making it was difficult and uncomfortable for others to use. The lecture hall was frequently closed to paying passengers while meetings were held which, in effect, meant that time for our lectures was less. Their numbers also increased the people on the expedition boats meaning that there was a greater length of time having to wait to go ashore. The travel agents frequently liked to mention how cheap they got their trip and how “grandmother” got to go for nothing! This did not sit well with people like myself who had spent over £20,000 for the privilege! I understand that this has now happened on several Hurtigruten ships so you may want to check before booking if there are to be any conventions on board. This sailing was the last of the season and unfortunately while there were only a few cases of Coronavirus in the world when we left, during the cruise everything changed! We found ourselves not being allowed to disembark at the end of the expedition as the ports began to close. It was after some time that the crew managed to get us to disembark off the Falklands so we had an extended trip. Every one of the team from the waiters, to stewards to crew to Expedition Team and Officers kept us well posted, entertained, cleaned, well fed and watered during what was quite a stressful time for many. I actually enjoyed it! Thank you Hurtigruten. Unfortunately we were repatriated via a very small charter plane which made the journey from Stanley to Santiago horrendous. However, the LATHAM flight back Santiago to London was via a Dreamliner so I could almost forgive the claustrophobic flight from the Falklands. Hurtigruten has worked very hard to implement changes and rectify poor feedback from the initial cruises on the Amundsen. There still needs to be some changes like the shop could stock more items rather than just looking like an expensive “duty free” store. Books on the areas travelled to and/or Polar exploration and history, sweets and snacks wouldn’t go amiss. The clothes were beautiful but quite expensive. This lack of variety could be because the shop is rented out and does not have anything to do with Hurtigruten. I know on their other ships, the shop inventory is much better. The main auditorium now has screens on most walls so that wherever you sit, you will have a good view. The presentations are also screened in your suites and cabins. The check-in process was quite efficient where you checked in on the deck where your cabin was. However, after a very long day and early flight from Santiago, the very long queue to see the medical team to turn in your medical declaration was not nice! The organising into expedition teams was efficient as we were given a group “name”. Each group was then called in turn to board the zodiacs. Again, it was a shame that there was a large convention on board which led to more groups obviously leading to a longer wait. However, the whole operation was smooth, people being loaded as others were being “disinfected” and unloaded. They made sure each group was rotated in order to leave early. Except for the small points that have been made above, the Roald Amundsen is one of the best ships that I have been on. However, as it is billed as an Expedition ship, it carries more passengers than it should. People also need to do their research and really need to understand the concept of Hurtigruten. Some on board didn’t and were sure to let everyone know! I am looking forward to my next Hurtigruten expedition once this crazy world settles! Read Less
Sail Date February 2020
I always want to go beyond the limits... and this voyage took me further south than 70° latitude, right down to the Antarctic ice fields. An unforgettable experience. Like the entire trip, with quite a few landings on our way up along the ... Read More
I always want to go beyond the limits... and this voyage took me further south than 70° latitude, right down to the Antarctic ice fields. An unforgettable experience. Like the entire trip, with quite a few landings on our way up along the Antarctic peninsula to finally reach the Falkland islands before getting back to Punta Arenas. It was quite impressive to see all the different wildlife during this trip, from wales, seals, penguins to lots of different species of birds. On our way we also landed on Stonington Island to visit the historic sites of the former American and British stations on the Antarctic, which both have been abandoned more than 50 years ago. On our way back, we also stopped at Vernadsky Research Base, a Ukrainian Antarctic Station located at Marina Point on Galindez Island of Argentine Islands. A visit of the station and its facilities gave an insight of how these people live and work. And finally the drake passage made me realize how rough and challenging the sea can be when Atlantic and Pacific ocean meet around the cape. The cruise ship itself is designed and built according to the state of the art, incorporating a hybrid engine combined with the latest propeller technology. It started its operations mid of 2019 and thus is in absolut best shape. The service staff, whether engaged in housekeeping or treating the guests at the 3 different restaurants, was an absolut delight. Friendly, efficient and always with a smile on their faces, they made this voyage a pleasant experience. Talking about the restaurants on board, I encountered a bit of a problem: before going on this trip I promised to myself to keep an eye on the diet. No chance. Not in the least. And that was not because I'm not disciplined enough, the food display was just too appealing and made it impossible for me to resist. Fortunately, there's a gym on board of the Roald Amundsen, which gave me the opportunity to work off some pounds. But what would this trip have been without the exhibition team that was accompanying the cruise guests at all landings on the Antarctic and Falkland islands. But also when on board of the vessel, they expedition team was present all the time with briefings, workshops and presentations on a lot of different subjects, be it about the animal life of the visited regions, or the scientific view on glaciers and icebergs, the history of the Antarctic and its explorers, and many other subjects. As weather conditions can change rapidly in the Antarctic peninsula, the crew and exhibition team at some points had to change plans. They were always well-prepared to do so and made adjustments for the guest go very smooth and with no stress at all. Thanks to a wonderful crew and team! Read Less
Sail Date February 2020
Initially this cruise offered, Chilean fjords, Cape Horn, Falkland Islands, and various disembarkation points down the Antarctic peninsula. What we got was all the above plus crossing the circle and seeing the pack ice at 70 deg Sth with ... Read More
Initially this cruise offered, Chilean fjords, Cape Horn, Falkland Islands, and various disembarkation points down the Antarctic peninsula. What we got was all the above plus crossing the circle and seeing the pack ice at 70 deg Sth with associated landings and a chance for a solar plunge below the Antarctic circle. I found all ship amenities great with all meals of a very high standard. One of the highlights was the crew; from the Captain down they were very approachable, always had the time to talk, enjoyed a joke, provided excellent service and were extremely knowledgeable in their respective fields. As this was an "expedition" cruise there was minimal entertainment unlike what you would expect otherwise - most entertainment consisted of lectures given by the expedition personnel, experts in their fields which I found to be very informative and prepared you for the shore excursions. I have two steel knees and a partly fused back; I participated in all activities ashore and accomplished all bar one, the climb to the top of the hill on Westpoint Is, W Falklands - 50knot + winds was the cause. The "tea and biscuits" provided on the Falkland Islands was exceptional and was a great wind down after the walks - well done to all those involved. I was travelling solo so did not spend much time in the cabin, sea view only, couldn't afford the upgrade to balcony, however the bed was extremely comfortable, the ensuite with heated floor was great, the only drawback was the desk did not have a specific light so was a little dark - only wrote 3 postcards so not a huge problem. Excursions: What can I say - stupendous, magical, awesome and any other adjectives along these lines. I cannot express the wonder, the pristine beauty or the sheer spectacle of it all - it really does need to be experienced in person. The excursions included island and continental landings, visiting Ukraine research facility, zodiac trips, kayaking trips (not attempted due to inflexibility of knees) wildlife spotting (more plentiful around Christmas) and talking to the locals. To summarise, how good was it - brilliant; would I do it again - in a heartbeat. Would I do the polar plunge again - NO WAY, not that stupid. Read Less
Sail Date February 2020
This trip far exceeded our expectations. The new ship was excellent, the crew were very friendly and helpful and the Expedition team were knowledgeable and approachable. We had a comfortable and spacious cabin on deck 5 with a large ... Read More
This trip far exceeded our expectations. The new ship was excellent, the crew were very friendly and helpful and the Expedition team were knowledgeable and approachable. We had a comfortable and spacious cabin on deck 5 with a large window. There was a good choice of food in the restaurant and either buffet dinners or fixed seating depending on the daily schedule. The trip is all about what you are going to see and everything is arranged around that. We were lucky to be able to land at Cape Horn, cross the Antarctic Circle and go past 70 degrees South to the ice fields. Interesting landings at Stonnington Island, Red Rock Ridge, Horseshoe Island, Ukrainian Research Base, Orne Island, Deception Island, some small boat cruising and 3 stops in The Falklands, not forgetting the Neptune Ice Challenge There is no usual cruise ship entertainment which was not a problem, the various lectures were informative and interesting and could be watched on your cabin tv if you didn’t wantto sit in the lecture room,. Read Less
Sail Date February 2020
We recently returned from an Antarctic cruise on Roald Amundsen and I wanted to pass on our impressions on the company, the ship and the cruise. Most people have likely never heard of Hurtigruten unless they have taken a ferry in ... Read More
We recently returned from an Antarctic cruise on Roald Amundsen and I wanted to pass on our impressions on the company, the ship and the cruise. Most people have likely never heard of Hurtigruten unless they have taken a ferry in Norway. The company is best known for operating the ferries that travel up and down the coast of Norway but they also have several cruise ships and do cruises in North America, South America and Europe. Bookings can be made through travel agents, via the US internet site or via the Norway internet site. Prices for cruises through the different methods seemed to vary more than is normal for cruises we have taken on other lines so I would check a few to get the best price. We chose the Roald Amundsen because it was a new ship with modern accommodations and did “Expedition” cruises to Antarctica. There are a wide variety of ships and itineraries you can choose from when going to the Antarctic and we wanted to find a good mix of cost, adventure and comfort. We did a lot of research on this and chose Roald Amundson. The ship turned out to be just what we wanted. The ship was new and spotless. The Antarctic weather can be unpredictable so we chose a cabin with the least amount of motion in bad weather. Our cabin was RR418 which was on the lowest deck and in the middle of the ship. While the weather was mostly very calm we did have three days with 40 knot winds and 15 foot waves and we had no issues in our cabin. The cabin was larger and better equipped than we had expected with a double bed, a sofa and a desk. There was less storage space than we would have liked but since the attire is very casual we packed minimally and did not have any issues. The closet initially had only three hangers and when we requested more we got 10 hangers which was more than we could use. There are three restaurants on Roald Amundsen, two of which are available free to everyone and one that is available to suite customers and for a fee for others. Aune is the main dining room where most people ate three meals a day. Most days this was served as buffet to accommodate the shore excursions. For our cruise there were only three dinners with a set menu and assigned seating. For us we found the buffet vastly superior to the set menu. The buffet for all meals had a good mix of beef, pork, chicken, seafood and vegetarian items. I am not much of a seafood fan and I could always find three or four items that I liked. The second restaurant is Fredheim and is kind of like a fast food restaurant and serves hamburgers, hot dogs, tortillas with various filings and milkshakes (very good). We tried Fredheim twice for dinner and found it very good. We did not try Lindstrom which is the suite and for fee restaurant. Our cruise started in Santiago, Chile where the cruise included one night in a hotel in Santiago. When we arrived at the Santiago airport there were Hurtigturen people everywhere directing people to gathering points. Unfortunately our Hurtigruten experience did not start well when we found out they did not provide transportation to the hotel. Evidently you could have purchased this from Hurtigturen but we somehow missed this. For such a minor cost on an expensive cruise this seemed like something Hurtigruten should include particularly since this is the first exposure most people have to Hurtigruten. So we managed to get a shuttle to the hotel for about $10 each and arrived at the InterContinental hotel and the room and service was very good. Hurtigruten also had a checkin area in the hotel where you were assigned a group for departure to the airport for the flight to Punta Arenas the next morning and given luggage tags. Our bags were collected in the morning and the next time we saw them was in your cabin on the ship. Continental breakfast was provided in to go bags along with many coffee and tea stations in the hotel lobby. When your group is called you board the bus and proceed to the airport for your flight to Punta Arenas. Even though the flight is a charter each person must checkin individually and proceed through security to the boarding area. There did not appear to be any limitation on the amount of luggage you could check (we checked three bags between the two of us) and no one questioned anyone’s carryon either. Although the flights to Punta Arenas are early flights it appears you arrive in Punta Arenas before you can board the ship. So the bus gives you a little tour of Punta Arenas for about 2 hours before you proceed to the ship. On the ship there is a checkin process where you get your cabin cards and a lanyard. Before the ship departs there is the mandatory briefing and escort to your lifeboat station. You are also given your boots and jacket and assigned a shore group (we were the wandering albatross). The ship requests that you use the Hurtigruten app on your phone of tablet to find out about activities on the ship. The app can be downloaded for both Android and IPhone and is really a must have for the trip as this is how you are informed when your group will go ashore, any changes in the itinerary and the daily schedule. The app uses the onboard wifi (which was free and worked well for us). The daily schedule includes lectures and other activities conducted by the Expedition team members. The Expedition team includes individuals with a variety of areas of expertise and are your guides in the Antarctic. We had marine biologists, ornithologists, glaciologists and other experts on the Antarctic and its wildlife on the ship. The ship does not have a self service laundry and the prices to have laundry done is on the high side. On the first night of our cruise the captain announced that the Discovery channel was onboard filming our trip for the Mighty Ship series and also announced our itinerary would differ from the typical as we would be going much further south than normal (we ended up going below 70 degrees south). The good part was we got to experience the edge of the ice sheet in zodiacs but the down side is we spent less time around the Antarctic archipelago which has more wildlife. So our cruise was not the typical itinerary but I think in general the landings were pretty typical. The day before a landing is planned the head of the Expedition team will give a briefing on the landing site, its history and what you can expect to find there. The app gives you the time your group is expected to depart the ship. The order is rotated so each group is the first off and the last off. The landings in the Antarctic are generally a half hour to an hour depending on the location while stops in the Falklands allow you to stay as long as you like. Each landing group has about 30 people and when your group is called you go the “pit” where you wait to board the zodiacs. Each zodiac holds 12 people so three zodiacs take your group ashore. If you are taking camera or other equipment ashore it must be in a backpack so that both your hands are free when you get into and out of the zodiac. The Expedition team stresses this as there can be waves and wind when you board and you need both hands to grab the people helping you to board/exit the zodiac both at the ship and onshore. Once you are in the zodiac you can take your camera out but you must have it back in the backpack before you exit the zodiac. Onshore that Expedition team maps out where you can go to not disturb the wildlife. Generally they keep you 15 feet from penguins and farther from fur seals. Generally where you can go in the Antarctic is relatively small, 200 to 300 yards so a half hour to an hour is plenty of time ashore. Each landing is dependent on the weather and sometimes they had to revert to Plan B, C or D to find a landing spot. On days with landings it appeared they tried to accommodate two landings when that was possible. On our trip we had six landings and two days where we cruised in the zodiacs but did not land. On the Falklands we stopped at Stanley and also two settlements where there was much more walking with one involving 3-4 miles of walking and the other 1-2 miles. Each settlement included an unlimited amount of “tea and biscuits” or cookies and coffee/tea served by the hosts at the settlement. Note a settlement is generally a house, barn and a lot of pasture located on an island. One thing I can say is we brought too much cold weather gear. The coldest day we had was -5C and the warmest was 14C. The key was to make sure you were protected from the wind both in the zodiac and onshore. The jacket they give you is a pretty good windbreaker but otherwise provides little warmth. My typical attire was a merino wool medium base layer upper and lower, t shirt, jacket, waterproof pants and fingerless wool gloves. On the coldest day I added a wool sweater and was never cold. Going ashore you must wear the rubber boots you are given and I added wool liner sock and heavy wool socks. Onboard the typical attire was casual pants, jeans or sweatpants with a polo or t shirt. I have very nice moccasin slippers and I wore them all over the ship. In summary we loved this cruise and we loved the Roald Amundsen. The crew were excellent, the lectures were in general interesting and well presented, the landings were fantastic and we found the food very good with a large variety. Both my wife and I noted that throughout the cruise the fruit seemed fresh and very tasty which for a 17 day cruise seemed amazing. We were disappointed in some small things like the lack of transportation at the airport and the small tables in the dining room. The vast majority of the tables in Aune are for two people and we find the interaction of a larger group of people at dinner to be a significant part of our cruise. Read Less
Sail Date February 2020
Beautiful ship, hybrid, professional team, lots to explore and see. Breath taking views of glaciers and icebergs, penguins, seals, birds, whales. We traveled through the Drake Passage which was the Drake Lake going in and the Drake Shake ... Read More
Beautiful ship, hybrid, professional team, lots to explore and see. Breath taking views of glaciers and icebergs, penguins, seals, birds, whales. We traveled through the Drake Passage which was the Drake Lake going in and the Drake Shake coming out but we expected that and were ready for it. The crew did an amazing job in all areas. From room cleaning to restaurants to lectures to spa to hanging out, you name it this crew was on top of things and a delight to be with. Loved every minute of it. Food was plentiful and always well stocked. Loved that they have a hand washing station before going to meals. Ship was always clean. We were well trained in how to get on and off the tenders and how to wash our boots when returning and vacuum our clothing so we didn't bring anything that didn't belong on shore when we visited each island. Captain was so friendly, funny and his crew the best. Loved every minute. Read Less
Sail Date February 2020
A state of the art ship, with a state of the art crew. Not your typical cruise with food, entertainment, and gambling being the focus points. This was more of an expedition, with emphasis on education and broadening your appreciation of ... Read More
A state of the art ship, with a state of the art crew. Not your typical cruise with food, entertainment, and gambling being the focus points. This was more of an expedition, with emphasis on education and broadening your appreciation of environment, with an extremely knowledgeable group of people to help you accomplish that goal. They came from an international background and wide range of first hand experiences Germaine to their specialties. The cuisine was more European than American, with ample portions and choices. Not a large choice of comfort foods, (like pizza and Mac and cheese), but you will not go hungry. Landings and excursions were dependent on weather conditions, but the crew did their best to make them happen, and they were wonderful. If wildlife is important to you, this experience will serve you well. A multitude of penguins, (we saw six different species), seals, whales and a variety of flying birds comprised our viewing pleasure. A great trip! Read Less
Sail Date January 2020
The expeition portion of the was excellent (going ashore), which only last about 60 to 90 minutes. The rest of your time became very boring!!!!!!! Going to the next day presentation was difficult, because the person attempting to speak ... Read More
The expeition portion of the was excellent (going ashore), which only last about 60 to 90 minutes. The rest of your time became very boring!!!!!!! Going to the next day presentation was difficult, because the person attempting to speak English, used "ah" about every third word they spoke. We were on deck 5 (room 565), every morning you left your cabin, you had to smell burnt garlic, because the galley is directly above you. There is no entertainment on the ship at all, unless you count the girl playing the piano in the evening. She was so bad they offered the piano up, if you wanted to play it. These were not worst part of our journey; the food sucks, unless you like fish for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. The fish they served was extremely fishy tasting, which probably explains, why they cook garlic all day long. They make a joke about the food, saying "you came for the destination, not the food." This cruise did not have many from the USA, maybe we hold food to a higher standard. Add to the fact your serving yourself, for almost all the meals, because it a buffet.It didn't help matters, that my wife and I caught the Norvirus, the last Sea Day. We are just getting over the symptoms. If you already have made final payment, watch out for the lettuce, in the salads, a lot of old stuff, they try to serve. The kind that's turning brown and even black!!! Plus bring your own salad dressing, theirs are really bad. We cruise a lot, Elite Plus with Celbrity, but we've also sailed with Carnival, Royal Cribbean, Azamara, and Cunard, about 60 cruises. Hurtigruten would rank below all of them. The only reason we sailed with them, was to actually stand on Antarctica. The cruise was too long, it could have been shorten 3 or 4 days. Read Less
Sail Date January 2020
We chose this cruise because as a geographer I have always been interested in traveling to Antarctica. We have had previous experience traveling on Hurtigruten ships. We feel the company does an excellent job, and our experience has always ... Read More
We chose this cruise because as a geographer I have always been interested in traveling to Antarctica. We have had previous experience traveling on Hurtigruten ships. We feel the company does an excellent job, and our experience has always been positive. The crew of the Roald Amundsen was very attentive to our needs, from the wait staff in the dining rooms, to the steward who made sure our stateroom was serviced daily, to the front desk staff, expedition team, medical department, tender boat crews, and all of the scientists and experts who presented the lectures aboard ship. This was truly the experience of a lifetime, one that we will remember for the rest of our lives. We would especially like to thank Daniel, from the Aune Restaurant for taking such good care of us, and our evening waiter Zuni who also did a great job. We especially enjoyed the talent show put on by the crew. We had gotten to know many of these folks during our time on board, and it was great to see them in this capacity. The pre-boarding tour of Punta Arenas was very well done. The local guide was informative and interesting. The check-in experience on the ship went very well, and we learned that our cabin had been upgraded. Our dining experience was certainly positive. The food offered was excellent, with plenty of choice to satisfy any kind of palate. Read Less
Sail Date January 2020
Chilean Fjords, Antarctica and Falklands - Great Explorers and Wildlife Thursday, December 26, 2019 – Sunday, January 12, 2019 Ship: MS Roald Amundsen Cabin: 719 General Comments: All transfers with guides, on buses or ... Read More
Chilean Fjords, Antarctica and Falklands - Great Explorers and Wildlife Thursday, December 26, 2019 – Sunday, January 12, 2019 Ship: MS Roald Amundsen Cabin: 719 General Comments: All transfers with guides, on buses or vans were well administered. Hostesses at the pre and post hotel the Intercontinental in Santiago de Chile were very helpful and virtually there early morning to late evening. My husband, who left his hearing aids in our room actually got them back. They were waiting for him on our return with his name in giant letters. You could not have asked for any better organization. An additional guard for luggage security was present. In most cases the luggage was transferred with the passengers. Water, coffee and tea with snacks was available as well as an early morning breakfast on the day we had our flights to Punta Arenas. Pre and Post Hotel: The Intercontinental Santiago de Chile was excellent. Breakfasts which were included were substantial and of good quality. Omelets were an option if you wanted one. The hotel bar food and drinks were very good, especially the pizza with everything on it and the vodka martini’s. Flights: On American, non stop Dallas to Santiago de Chile operated without issues. However, it would be our opinion that offering a cocktail to premium economy passengers and then serving them dinner before they could even drink that cocktail needs to be changed. Being an ex stewardess, unless things have changed, the head stewardess determines how the flight will be worked. In this instance if you wanted a glass of wine with dinner, well that was not going to happen. Latam Charter Flights: Flights were without issue. The food was horrible. Half a loaf of bread with no mayo or mustard. I ended up cutting mine in thirds and putting all of the meat and cheese on the sandwich on that third. We were given a container of jelly, butter, crackers and unripened fruit. Ugh! Ship: MS Roald Amundsen, a hybrid ship, I believe the first of it’s kind. I was fascinated with what our ship could do. No anchors, the captain just told the computer to stay there and it did. Propellers that have the ability to go 360 degrees so the ship can back up, turn left or right or whatever the captain desires. An incredible vessel. Battery and diesel powered. Each night the expedition team would tell us what plan “A” would be for the next day. Mind you they had plans’ A, B, C and D if we needed them. Lucky us we did plan “A” everyday and had beautiful, sunny days and around 30 degrees of summer weather. The expedition team gave us talks on explorers, whaling, penguins, whales, icebergs. We all came back so much smarter. Every morning the expedition team would scout out the site for that days landing, also having enough emergency supplies on hand in case we had to spend the night on shore due to some freak weather event. We would go ashore in zodiacs that held 14 people and the ship was divided into teams. No more than 100 people on Antarctica at a time so we would start going ashore at 10 or 11 and that would continue until 4 or 5pm with people coming and going. When we returned to the ship our special Muc boots would be washed by brushes we stepped into and then we would step into an anti-bacterial wash for the bottoms. Hurtigruten is extremely careful not to impact Antarctica in any way. When we arrived on board if you had new clothes all was good, if you were wearing previously worn items they had to be taken to a special area where all the seams, pockets and hiding places would be vacuumed, no hitchhiking bacteria on Antarctica. You could also kayak, spend the night on Antarctica and do the polar plunge if you were so inclined. Food: Let me first say this ship is worthy a five star rating, unfortunately food on board for the most part deserves a three star rating. I hope they will work to improve the restaurant venues. In spite of the restaurant foods, I would highly recommend this ship and sailing to all my friends. The chef prepared a hot soup every day and all of these were delicious. We also were treated to a pasta dish of the day which was also yummy. The cold sea foods were plentiful and of good quality. If you wanted to have smoked salmon three times a day you could, and my husband usually did. The Lindstrom was promoted as their best restaurant but in my opinion the food was uninspired in preparation and presentation. Their most interesting offering being a starter called Smoked Shrimp which when opened smoke came forth. Very clever. This kitchen would benefit from serving aged beef in it's steak offerings. The best dish was a duck breast which would have been better with a seared exterior and keeping a medium rare interior still pink. The Aune was the main dining restaurant and was fair except with casserole prepared dishes that were allowed to dry out to the elements and so become rather unappetizing. The Fredheim was where one could get a hamburger if you just had to have one. Of course, you could not have fries or potato chips but instead were offered a baked potato with your burger. Bizarre to say the least. I am a graduate of Cordon Bleu Paris with a Grand Diplome, it is my opinion that the Lindstrom would benefit from either smaller plates for the main course or adding more to the presentation so the whole doesn't appear as not enough food on the plate. Enough about food. This Hybrid ship and it's crew gave us 110% every day. You need to put this trip on your to do list. Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
We sailed on the December 27th departure. In truth, the trip exceeded our expectations. The ship is beautiful, large rooms, ample space in public areas for viewing the outside scenery. Every convenience...like lots of outlets to charge ... Read More
We sailed on the December 27th departure. In truth, the trip exceeded our expectations. The ship is beautiful, large rooms, ample space in public areas for viewing the outside scenery. Every convenience...like lots of outlets to charge batteries and strong, free wifi 24/7, bathrobes and heated bathroom floor. The expedition team (22 in all) were specialists in all the relevant natural history fields and offered several lectures a day that could be enjoyed on the big screen TV in the cabin or in the lecture hall. One person gave an excellent series of lectures on the history of specific explorers. Communications from the team were excellent. Landings were perfectly executed and even though it was one per day...that proved enough for us. The food was amazing and I can not imagine anyone finding fault, given there were so many choices. We had a tour of the bridge and the ship's officers were visible, friendly and available for questions. They also sat in the dining room for lunch. All other crew members were service oriented and hard working. Could not have done more for us. We had 9 landings in all and also docked in Stanley for the day. Camping, kayaking and snow shoeing were also offered at additional cost. After a morning landing on Petermann island we were scheduled to do zodiac cruising in the afternoon but it was cancelled because of moving ice. We actually bumped our way through floating, dense ice in the zodiacs on the way to Petermann. I was happy with the experience we had there. Otherwise it was landings once a day. The bay was full of icebergs and easy to see from the ship. There were 7 landings in Antarctic and 2 in the Falklands on privately owned islands (sheep farms) which had amazing albatross colonies and rock hopper penguins. If you want to google them it was Carcass Island and West Point Island. We had tea and snacks at the farmers home after our trek to the rookeries. On the day in Stanley we booked a ship excursion for $149 to Bluff Cove Lagoon to see King Penguins which was excellent and we had OBC to use up. Later we had time to walk through Stanley and the ship had non stop shuttles from the dock to downtown. The Antarctic landings were Yankee Harbor, Mikkelsen Harbor, Danco Island, Orne harbor, Damoy Point, Petermann island and Deception Island. A google search will show the beautiful setting and history of these locations. We were so worried about the number of landings before the cruise and also wanted to do zodiac cruising near arched icebergs (yes, we saw wonderful arched icebergs), but in the end the ship got us very close to penguins on icebergs, humpback whales, seals etc. The deck 6 view points are very close to the water and we maneuvered through spectacular scenery. Naturalists are on deck 7 and 10 and very informative. It was very sunny most days. Bring sunglasses and sun block. I know I sound like an advertisement. Decisions about landings were made on a daily basis because of weather etc. but we landed every day. Each night we were given a detailed briefing about the next day. The daily events newsletter was delivered to staterooms at night and were on the TV in the room as well. Just a footnote...there is no on board entertainment other than a crew show. But that was not the reason we took an expedition cruise and we were very busy all day with landings, dining and enrichment lectures. Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
Hurtigruten offered the best Antarctica cruise available in a brand new technologically advanced hybrid ship. The ship is new, modern, extremely quiet and good for the environment. We visited excursion sites that other ships are not able ... Read More
Hurtigruten offered the best Antarctica cruise available in a brand new technologically advanced hybrid ship. The ship is new, modern, extremely quiet and good for the environment. We visited excursion sites that other ships are not able to get to. We were the southernmost cruise ship in the world for part of the voyage. The staff was excellent - both the hotel staff and the excursion staff. The Penguins were everywhere and adorable. The views were completely amazing. I felt very safe and well taken care of. I was amazed that we had internet the entire trip in such a remote place. I didn't feel like a number or someone to be sold to like on other cruises. The team was very focused on educating us and providing a great experience. Having never been on an expedition cruise before I was delighted. I couldn't have been happier with the trip and the value for the money. Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
Everything from start to finish was fantastic on this cruise. The transfers between the airport and the hotel in Santiago, and between Santiago and Punta Arenas, were seamless. Embarkation and disembarkation were both a breeze. But the ... Read More
Everything from start to finish was fantastic on this cruise. The transfers between the airport and the hotel in Santiago, and between Santiago and Punta Arenas, were seamless. Embarkation and disembarkation were both a breeze. But the best part, by far, was the cruise itself. The ship was beautifully appointed, and offered all the latest technology. Our cabin was much larger than any that we've had on an ocean or river cruise, and very efficiently laid out. We were completely comfortable for the 16 nights. The food was absolutely fabulous, with plenty of selections at every meal, and a nice variety of vegetarian options. This isn't your typical cruise in that there is no entertainment, per se, although the crew did put on some pretty entertaining musical performances. Since we were on board over New Year's Eve, the hotel manager arranged a really fun celebration. But other than that, the entertainment was limited to lectures by the very knowledgeable expedition team, and the excursions themselves - so much better than playing bingo or watching a Newlywed Game! The nature of this cruise requires that you be very flexible and keep a positive attitude. There are a lot of unknowns with the weather, so plans can change very quickly. That's part of the fun! The expedition team and the rest of the crew were very organized and kept us well-informed of what to expect. Safety was always the first priority. Even though we had some bad weather days, the team managed to arrange landings that provided for absolutely spectacular interactions with wildlife, and incredible scenery. For most people, a trip to Antarctica is a once-in-a-lifetime adventure, so I would highly recommend trusting that experience to Hurtigruten and the MS Roald Amundsen. Read Less
Sail Date December 2019
Chilean fjords, Cape Horn, Drake Passage, Antarctic Peninsula, Antarctic islands, south Shetland Islands, Elephant Island, Lemaire Channel were areas visited. Cabin was ok. I cruised in a room separate from my friend, cause I wanted ... Read More
Chilean fjords, Cape Horn, Drake Passage, Antarctic Peninsula, Antarctic islands, south Shetland Islands, Elephant Island, Lemaire Channel were areas visited. Cabin was ok. I cruised in a room separate from my friend, cause I wanted lots of room. It was a room that most couples share. It was just enough space for just me, I’m so glad I didn’t share it w my friend. Food at all 3 restaurants (1 buffet, 1 a la carte, 1 pay restaurant) was just barely warm. Vegetables were generally overcooked. Meat was rare, sometimes medium rare. Ice cream was available, but not advertised. If you asked for it, it was always available Lectures in their auditorium were an added bonus. They were 40-60 minutes in length, hosted by many different members of the expedition staff. They included geology, oceanography, marine biology, zoology, many others. There were usually 2-4 lectures per day, each usually repeated once for those that were at a meal, etc. Entertainment was not part of the experience at all—it was an expedition voyage, was all about our itinerary. Antarctica itself was entertaining Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
Ship is state of the art, very stable, very comfortable. Service was excellent. Crew went out of their way to make it an memorable voyage. Dining was above average, much better than many other cruise lines. There is always room ... Read More
Ship is state of the art, very stable, very comfortable. Service was excellent. Crew went out of their way to make it an memorable voyage. Dining was above average, much better than many other cruise lines. There is always room for improvement, but nothing major. The lunch buffet was as good as the dinner. One suggestion would be to have extended hours in the Fredheim restaurant when the landing schedules varied. Expedition crew is comprised of highly intelligent, talented, well organized and helpful team. You need to be flexible with this type if voyage, as weather conditions, etc dictate itinerary and landings. The is quite a lot time on board and waiting for your landing group to be called. There isn't a lot of entertainment on an expedition voyage. TV & movies via satellite from Norway. Crew show showcased some talented crew members. Well stocked library in the science center with books about flora, fauna, voyages, etc., including a take one, leave one area. Hot tubs and infinity pool were open on Deck 10 - too cold for me but many passengers used them. Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
I have researching Antarctica expedition cruises for a while. Let me start off by saying I got a bargain price for this cruise...it must have gone on sale for a week when I nabbed it. I might have been a little disappointed had I paid ... Read More
I have researching Antarctica expedition cruises for a while. Let me start off by saying I got a bargain price for this cruise...it must have gone on sale for a week when I nabbed it. I might have been a little disappointed had I paid close to full price. Embarkation was quite disorganized. Busloads of people were brought to the ship at once and IF you knew your cabin number, you could go to that deck to sign in.....but most in this mob scene did not have cabin assignments yet. Cabins were quite spacious for this type of expedition cruise. Had enough room to put cloths after removing coffee-tea sets. Loved the heated bathroom floor. There was also a boot warmer in the closet. Seemed to be a problem with cabin phones on the ship that were supposed to allow for ship announcements in the room. My cabin 4th deck forward port 448 was directly above the location where they launched all the kayaks, zodiacs...so could get a bit noisy during those times, but then again I got this whole cruise at a sale price. Food: I thought the food was very good. I was worried after reading reviews from some of the earlier cruisers when this new ship was first sailing. Buffet had plenty of choices for fish lovers, carnivores and vegetarians, and sit down was limited choice, but still adequate. The alternate casual restaurant (Friedhem?) was interesting, but descriptions on the menu did not match what was received. Ship had a washing station and hand sanitizer at the entrance of the main restaurant, (GOOD thing) but wait staff barely brushed off crumbs from the table mats, nor wiped the mats or tables clean between passengers. Entertainment: Lectures were informative. The (so called) auditorium was basically a big room with hard temporary chairs. If not seated in the front row you could not see; we were grateful that they were able to stream them to the cabin television. Occasional movies in the Auditorium could not be streamed...technology was not set up for that. Also too bad they could not broadcast any missed lectures on demand from the room television. Science lab was a lot of fun and interesting when things were staffed with their scientists but under-used. Excursions: Let's be honest; the whole reason for this type of trip is the excursions. Tourism law dictates only 100 people on an Antarctic island at any one time. With 400 or so passengers they did a pretty good job scheduling groups, but it still seemed a bit crowded. I cannot imagine how much more crowded it would have been if we had been sailing at full capacity (500) Most of the landings had enough excursion team members scattered about the site to help point the way, but occasionally hard to find someone. Captain and excursion team always had (and executed) multiple plans for the day because no one can predict weather and conditions. Alternate plans worked out nicely. Also essential for excursions, I was pleased to see they had a good choice of muck boots to lend out. I had read horror-story reviews from the Roald Amundsen when they first started doing their cruises in Arctic, Greenland the summer of 2019, and was delighted we did not encounter any of these problems on their Antarctic itinerary. All of these excursions were included. The one excursion I paid for in Port Stanley, Falklands to travel to the King Penguin colony (on the private grounds of a tour company ) was advertised to last 3 hours, but was only 2 hours round trip. This left us only about 50 minutes to walk around to see the penguins , shore birds and other scenery. I was glad I got to see the few King penguins, but felt extremely ripped off not having ample time to wander around. Complaining to the excursion team aboard did not help since they also expected this tour to be 3 hours. The company running the tour is just too greedy hoping to get more groups ($$) pushed through during a day.. Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
Lifetime ambition to visit Antarctica . The shore excursions were exceptionally well organised. Pre Planning and getting ashore to many Islands were run with military precision. Walking on ice , ice cruising round ice bergs and ... Read More
Lifetime ambition to visit Antarctica . The shore excursions were exceptionally well organised. Pre Planning and getting ashore to many Islands were run with military precision. Walking on ice , ice cruising round ice bergs and other activities were remarkably good. The suite decor was well presented and the Wellington boots were easy to dry as hot air pipes located in cloak cupboards dried boots easily. Every member of the crew most helpful. We found it very difficult to find fault. Maybe the only criticism was the food in executive dining room was a little repetitive but the quality of food was good. Pre trip lectures were informative so We knew exactly what to expect. No stone was left unturned when it came to safety briefings. If you did not attend safety briefings then you did not go ashore until attendance was signed off. I cannot praise the trip highly enough. Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
The Roald Amundsen hybrid ship is the newest in the Hurtigruten group and we were so lucky to have had the opportunity to travel to Antartica onboard. The rooms, restaurants, quality of the food, housekeeping, bars are all outstanding. It ... Read More
The Roald Amundsen hybrid ship is the newest in the Hurtigruten group and we were so lucky to have had the opportunity to travel to Antartica onboard. The rooms, restaurants, quality of the food, housekeeping, bars are all outstanding. It is however, the wonderful friendliness and professionalism of all staff that makes this trip so special. There are lectures in the science rooms, land and sea excursions, hot tubs on deck, a wonderful sauna, and a swimming pool to keep everyone occupied. Housekeeping was seamless and the rooms were spotless. The food in the three restaurants was fresh and beautifully cooked and with menus that varied on a regular basis which meant there was always plenty of choice and variation. Expedition staff were always on hand to point out whales, or the albatrosses that flew with the ship as we came close to Antartica, the different varieties of penguins, and seals. Stunning scenery and close encounters with wildlife meant this was a trip of a lifetime. Thank you!! Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
I had heard good reviews of Hurtigruten from friends. I felt safe in their hands as they have so much experience of cold, icy countries. When the offer of a reduction on MS Roald Amundsen for it’s first year I took the opportunity ... Read More
I had heard good reviews of Hurtigruten from friends. I felt safe in their hands as they have so much experience of cold, icy countries. When the offer of a reduction on MS Roald Amundsen for it’s first year I took the opportunity and have no regrets. A fantastic ship, a fantastic cruise, lively and knowledgeable expedition crew. I paid extra to camp out. An experience I will never forget. And walking on pack ice is unreal. We were also lucky enough to land on Cape Horn. My only complaint, nothing about Scot. Yes, he failed but he is still part of Antarctica history. Life on board was great. Our cabin was comfortable and spacious, enough room to store our stuff and the cases slipped under the beds. A choice of three restaurants with good food and a spacious bar with plenty of seating. I used the hot tubs and sauna twice and the pool once. And there were interesting lectures to fill in to at time if we wanted. A truly great experience. Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
We were not sure what to think about the Roald Amundsen after reading the reviews posted that we read before our cruise. We were concerned about the expeditions, our cabin and the dining experience/food. We are happy to report that we ... Read More
We were not sure what to think about the Roald Amundsen after reading the reviews posted that we read before our cruise. We were concerned about the expeditions, our cabin and the dining experience/food. We are happy to report that we have very little that we could mention as being even slightly negative about our experience on this 17 day adventure. From the time we arrived in Santiago to spend the first night at the hotel to the return to Santiago airport at the end of the trip, everything was well organized by Hurtigruten. If you want to be up close to the beauty of Antarctica while knowing you will be well taken care of on your trip, than Hurtigruten and MS Roald Amundsen would be an excellent choice! The Roald Amundsen is a beautiful hybrid ship and the crew does many things to make it "green". They are very conscious of the impact/footprint on the environment. We were each furnished our own water bottle and the ship had multiple filtered water stations on each deck to refill our bottles. They also educated us about what we could and could not do while in Antarctica so as to not hurt the land or the wildlife there. We were well informed every evening about the next day's schedule for landings and lectures. We were kept up to date every day if changes had to be made due to weather and landing conditions. We were told how to upload their app on our phone to keep informed or they would have a "hard copy" schedule at Guest Reception for us if we wanted one. We loved the lectures and information briefings where we could go to the lecture room in Science Center or watch in the comfort of our cabin while sitting in our very comfortable reclining chairs. A few of the "required" briefings had to be done in person at the lecture room but most could be seen in your cabin via live streaming. The expedition team was fabulous - very knowledgeable and helpful!!! There were always several people from the team available to answer questions. On the landings, all or most of them would be on shore helping us to get in and out of zodiac boats and as guides on trails to help with anything. We were amazed at the wealth of information they each had and loved their lectures on the ship. If the planned landing was not possible due to weather or ice conditions, the expedition leader and captain did everything they could to come up with an amazing alternative for the day. We landed at Cape Horn, did an ice landing, visited the Ukrainian Vernadsky Research base camp and made landings 5 out of the 6 days in Antarctica. In the Falkland Islands we docked at Port Stanley and did landings at two other locations the next two days. We can see where the quality of the expedition team can really enhance your experience in Antarctica! We were very fortunate that we had such a wonderful expedition team. We were pleasantly surprised about our experience in the dining room. We ate in the Aune dining room. Breakfast and lunch were open seating buffet with plenty of options. Breakfast included an egg/ omelet station which was delivered to your table. Dinner was assigned seating at either 6 or 8pm where we were served our dinner. A couple of times due to a late landing schedule, dinner was a buffet. Also we had virtually no waiting in any lines. What amazed us was that during the entire trip of 17 days, the meals were not repeated at dinner as well as most lunches! We have been on 2-3 week cruises on the big ships where menus are repeated during the cruise. The food was delicious and was some of the best food we have tasted any where in the world - not just on a cruise ship! There was enough of a variety that we had plenty of choices. We loved that for lunch and dinner they had a menu that listed all allergens for each dish. They did serve fish at every meal but it was a different kind each day. At lunch they had a seafood bar with different variety every day. A different soup was available every lunch and dinner which we especially enjoyed in the cold weather! There was a vegan and vegetarian choice available for lunch and dinner also. Also there were tea/coffee stations located around the ship. We were VERY happy with the food on the Amundsen! The officers and crew on this ship are approachable, friendly and willing to do whatever they could to make your day better. Captain Torrey was the most down to earth captain and often went on landings with us. The officers ate with us in the dining room every day. The dinning room staff was so personable and into customer service. They did everything to make dining an enjoyable experience. Everyone that worked on the ship, whether they were cleaning, doing maintenance, at guest relations, chefs, expedition team or officers would speak to us when we saw them. We felt like family. Our cabin was a Polar Outside cabin (#509) that was toward the front of ship on deck 5. It was very spacious and way more room than we needed for two people. Plenty of storage for our clothes and other things. Suitcases fit easily under bed to get them out of the way. We enjoyed the two comfortable reclining chairs in the cabin. It was a connecting cabin and we never heard any sounds from either cabin next to us. We were able to adjust the cabin temperature with no problem, We believe some of the initial reviews that said the cabins were hot may have been from the heated floors in the bathroom. If the bathroom floor temperature was high and left on all day/night, it would get hot in there. We just turned floors on about hour before showers and then turned off after showers. It was nice to use but not necessary. Bathroom was a good size. The bathroom had a large shower with a door that could swing open. We were not ready to get off the ship when it was time for our trip to end. We would like to go back again some day. We highly recommend Hurtigruten and the Roald Amundsen for a trip of a lifetime to Antarctica! Read Less
Sail Date November 2019
For me it was a once in a life time dream, which was especially dissapointing by the tour operator. I have choosen this tour with Hurtigruten because I made a very good experience on a two day tour in Norway. But as a tour operator for ... Read More
For me it was a once in a life time dream, which was especially dissapointing by the tour operator. I have choosen this tour with Hurtigruten because I made a very good experience on a two day tour in Norway. But as a tour operator for cruises it disappointed me nearly overall. A lot of promised things were not there. For example the underwater views on the big screen inside. There you only could see views of Norway. In my point of view Hurtigruten tried to please especially the media on the premier tour to Antarctica including the ship baptism. It was anoying that everywhere were cameras and drones were flying over your head to make a commercial for next year tours without asking for permission. I had several times the impression that the management from the captain to the Housekeeping management were arrogant if you have questions which are not in favour of the them, or if you have to complain something. It also included questions of safety. And on the other hand there was a thing where security standards were ignored. But at the end they blamed it to me, because the name tag was not at my luggage. But the peace of luggage was on board. The housekeeping did not want to help me. It was just a simple member of staff. Although I have booked the transfer from the airport to the hotel downtown - which was nescessary due to a delay of departure of the ship for one day - myself and a couple were refused to with the group to the hotel. Although in the hotel I was forced by the hotel to pay an upgrade otherwise I would not have a room in the hotel. The group in the buses - which arrived shortly later - they all had a room available. The couple and myself are still waiting for compensation from Hurtigruten, as we also had have to pay the taxi to town by ourself. At the airport it was said by the Hurtigruten coordinator that it will be settled shortly. The strange thing was that in the hotel they did not expect me to stay, or that I am part of the hurtigruten cruise. I had also the impression, if you are one of the guests who is not happy with everything you will be ignored, or they blamed it on you if it is not working. What also did not work were the update in the cabin with the latest news. If you complained about it, always an excuse was found. The most helpful and friendly stuff were the "simple crew" like the waiter, or the steward". If you asked them something they helped you directly. If you did it via the reception it also happened that you had have to wait for days and nothing happened. The only thing which worked promply was the reimbursement of the lost see day. Summing up cruising with Hurtigruten is totally different from using Hurtigruten along the shore line of Norway tradionally where the ship is used as a mean of transportation and not as a cruise ship. What I also found not so good was the kind of food. I expected local, Norwegian styled meals. But it was nothing special. Fortunately the scenery reimbursed me for the bad experiences I made with Hurtigruten. So Hurtigruten was just a mean of transportation and not the excitement itself. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
We chose this cruise to visit Antarctica and to travel on the latest hybrid ship. This was a very special experience. The ship, the whole crew, the expeditions and activities, the food all met and surpassed our expectations. I was ... Read More
We chose this cruise to visit Antarctica and to travel on the latest hybrid ship. This was a very special experience. The ship, the whole crew, the expeditions and activities, the food all met and surpassed our expectations. I was travelling with my sister, both of us of pensionable age and we had a wonderful time. We learned a great deal from the lectures and enjoyed the shore excursions enormously. We were very impressed by the ship's hybrid technology, desalination of water supply and waste disposable. We believe that this should be the future of cruise ships. Antarctica is a very beautiful and precious place and we were given every opportunity to experience this part of the world in as eco-friendly way as possible. Our outer clothes were vacuumed, special boots were provided and washed after each expedition. The expedition team were very careful to protect the animals and to abide by all the regulations which govern Antarctica. I fully recommend both M V Roald Amundsen and Hurtigruten for people wanting to experience luxurious, informative and eco-friendly cruising, without "entertainment" and dressing up, in beautiful and special parts of the world. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
We had an 18-day cruise from Valparaiso, Chile to Antarctica and back to Puerto Arenas. It took forever to get onto the ship and get into our cabin (436). Once we got in, things went well for the most part. The cabin was fine but there was ... Read More
We had an 18-day cruise from Valparaiso, Chile to Antarctica and back to Puerto Arenas. It took forever to get onto the ship and get into our cabin (436). Once we got in, things went well for the most part. The cabin was fine but there was a horrid odor in the hallway (sewage smell) off and on. Somedays it was barely noticeable; other days we held our noses and ran to our cabin. We reported it but it never changed. Our cabin steward was excellent! Overall, the food was good. The main dining room (Aune) was nice and we always found room for breakfast and lunch buffets. For the served dinners, the menu was great for the first few days but got stranger as time went on. I think they were trying to find new ways to use leftovers. We ate at the Lindstrom (an additional charge) one night but the food was about the same so we didn't go back. The "grill" (the Friedheim) was nice, but small. The menu didn't change much but that was okay as I found the food there very good. Our server (Jen) at the Aune was wonderful. She anticipated our needs and never pestered. Very friendly and easy to joke around with. Excursions went well, although we had to miss the stop at Castro. We were told we would get some compensation for that, but nothing so far. Overall, this was a great journey and I would go on that ship again. Read Less
Sail Date October 2019
Summer 2018 we booked the expedition-cruise "Alaska and Canada - Aleutian Islands, bears and Inside Passage" for more than £ 6.000,- p.P. According to the travel description we will land on the remote Beering-Sea Islands St. ... Read More
Summer 2018 we booked the expedition-cruise "Alaska and Canada - Aleutian Islands, bears and Inside Passage" for more than £ 6.000,- p.P. According to the travel description we will land on the remote Beering-Sea Islands St. Matthew and St. Paul to experience puffins, sea elephants, bears, vulcanoes, indigenous people, etc. A further landing was anounced in Unga Village, a deserted village on mainland Alaska, and other villages which you also can see on a regular Alaska cruise, such as Dutch Harbour, Kodiak, Sitka and Ketchikan. Few days before we left home, we were informed that we unfortunately will not land on St. Mathew Island and Unga Village. As compensation we got £ 190,-. During the journey we found out, that the landings were cancelled, because the Zodiaks for the landing had no permission for US waters. A well-known cruise-line, like Hurtigruten, they claim to be one of the leading expedition-cruise lines. This company doesn`t have the required authorization for the equipment. During the trip they also cancelled the landing on St. Paul Island. Though it was promised and usual for a expedition-cruise, we had not one "Zodiak"-landing because the boats had no permit for the USA. Hurtigruten offered just € 200,- as compensation for the cancelled landings. So we had a lot of time to stay on board. We have got a regular cruise, without landings on remote islands. Once there were divers under the ship, who tried to fix something. When we arrived in Vancouver, there were a stay in the dock to fix the problem finally. Once we had to go to the harbour by tenderboats, it came out that there were only 1-2 boatsmen who can operate the boats. If the ship would have been evacuated, it would take hours to save 530 passengers and the staff. Unusual for a expedition cruise was the two class restaurant system. Suite passengers may have breakfast and dinner in the fine dining restaurant. The rest has to line up in a canteen style restaurant for food and coffee. At some days dinner was served at the tables. In the restaurant the service provided by Filipinos was very good. But food was mediocre. In the afternoon the restaurants were closed, coffee was available but no pasty etc. WiFi was very slow. TV didn´t work. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
Previously very impressed with Hurtigruten, having travelled with them to Antarctica and had an amazing time. I have followed the story of their new ship, the Roald Amundsen, and was looking forward to this expedition cruise, taking a ... Read More
Previously very impressed with Hurtigruten, having travelled with them to Antarctica and had an amazing time. I have followed the story of their new ship, the Roald Amundsen, and was looking forward to this expedition cruise, taking a more adventurous Inside Passage route, on this innovative vessel. My husband and I were amongst the first to book, about 18 months ahead. The flight from Vancouver to Nome to join the ship was very scenic, but it was clear on landing that the weather was dictating events. The sea state had hindered the disembarkation of the homeward bound passengers and at first it was doubtful we would be able to embark that evening at all - the good people of Nome were preparing to put us up! As it happened we did make it on board but it was a little chaotic: we did not get the ‘suite check-in’, the cruise card machine wasn’t functioning properly, cabins weren’t ready, luggage was arriving separately, we couldn’t sail that night, but hey - what an exciting start! Two weeks before setting out Hurtigruten had informed us that two of the more remote landings wouldn’t happen because of US regulations regarding use of the Zodiacs. They said it was a ‘minor change’ and reimbursed €200pp but in reality this was a very major change because it ruled out all ‘wet landings’ and any remote wild life encounters - the very things that provide those amazing memorable moments that define an expedition cruise. Our first ‘landing’ after an extended time at sea, was a substitute stop at Sand Point in the Aleutians which was poorly organised to say the least, provided none of the promised wild life encounters, and revealed how poorly prepared the crew and expedition team were to cope with 500+ passengers in one tender boat and a destination they knew little about. Many passengers were understandably very unhappy about it and to add insult to injury we were all given a dressing down by the Expedition Leader at the evening briefing for complaining about it. There was also a ‘failure to launch’ of tenders which was officially because of ‘high swells’ but it was clear to anyone with even the slightest knowledge of sea states that the swell wasn’t high at all. Thank goodness we didn’t need to abandon ship in rough seas..... The Roald Amundsen is a beautiful ship. The decor is stylish Nordic, the jacuzzis and pool on deck 10 are lovely, the walking track on 11 is great, inside AND outside gym equipment, beautiful sauna, lovely cabins and super comfy beds. The explorer lounge is very comfortable (though the day beds at the bow only give a view of the railings) There is a lecture theatre and scientific equipment on Deck 6 but the former is poorly designed and the latter is mostly wrapped in plastic covers. There is a shop which sells little of any use unless you are in the market for tanzanite jewellery or a new watch, or have forgotten to bring a jacket (but you are given one on board anyway......) There is a spa (didn’t use it). What is clear is that with a full payload of passengers almost all the public areas are too small. The Aune dining area is poorly laid out for both staff and passengers and was a chaotic place to eat. The a la carte Lindstrom was much better but not big enough to accommodate suite passengers except on alternate nights. It’s small menu, though good, did not change throughout the duration of the sailing. The Friedheim ‘street food’ restaurant had an even smaller menu, which was shortened further due to limited availability, and again did not vary for the entire time on board. The lecture theatre is high tech but too small and uncomfortable during use, with passengers spilling out into the adjacent area. It was possible to view proceedings here from the cabin TVs but only for lip readers because the sound didn’t come through. If the use of zodiacs had been permitted it would clearly have been a vey long process for the numbers on board to access and enjoy them. The pool on deck 10 was ‘closed for maintenance’ for almost all our sailing: it leaked into the (expensive) cabins below, whose occupants must have had a truly miserable experience. The optional excursions, predictably I suppose, were overpriced and underwhelming. Some were cancelled at short notice. Some passengers had been given the opportunity to book prior to leaving home and some had not. Some of the expedition team were very new and inexperienced, some of the more senior ones had rather poor presentation skills. Some were excellent. Given that many of their clients are professional, well educated and experienced travellers I feel this team could do worse than up their game. On our previous trip with Hurtigruten in Antarctica we were in awe of the team on board and couldn’t praise them highly enough. Sadly not the case here. There were some notable highlights: seeing sparing bears, multiple humpback whales, the Hubbard Glacier. All amazing. I appreciate that with this sort of sailing itineraries can change, but for poor planning and awareness of regulations to have such a major negative impact on an advertised cruise reflects very badly on Hurtigruten. The on board experience was significantly diminished by ambitious passenger numbers and ‘teething issues’ with the ship. This was, in my opinion, neither ‘expedition’ or ‘cruise’ and Hurtigruten should reflect very seriously on just how it could fail, on both counts, on such a spectacular route. Read Less
Sail Date September 2019
MS Roald Amundsen Ratings
Category Editor Member
Cabin 5.0 N/A
Dining 4.0 3.2
Entertainment 1.0 2.9
Public Rooms 5.0 3.8
Fitness & Recreation 3.5 N/A
Family 3.0 3.4
Shore Excursions 4.5 N/A
Enrichment Activities 5.0 N/A
Service 4.5 4.0
Value for Money 4.0 N/A

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