Hurricane Gordon Heads for Azores; Disrupts Cruise Ship Itinerary

August 19, 2012

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(5:15 p.m. EDT) -- Despite being in the Atlantic Ocean nearly a thousand miles from a major landmass, Hurricane Gordon has affected the itinerary of Cruise and Maritime Voyages' Marco Polo.

The seventh named storm of the Atlantic hurricane season, Category One Hurricane Gordon is forecast to pass over or near the Eastern Azores on Monday. On Sunday evening, Marco Polo was off the coast of São Miguel in the Eastern Azores.

The 5 p.m. EDT advisory from the National Hurricane Center put the storm some 160 miles southwest of the Portuguese island chain, moving at over 20 miles per hour (m.p.h.) and packing sustained winds of up to 85 m.p.h. with higher gusts. Although the storm is expected to weaken, it is forecast to be a hurricane when it reaches the islands tomorrow.

A spokesperson from Cruise and Maritime Voyages told Cruise Critic that Marco Polo will make its way to Funchal, Madeira, to avoid the storm. Madeira is a Portuguese island to the southeast of the Azores, off the coast of Africa. Marco Polo is currently on a 15-night sailing which departed Tilbury on 11 August.

--by Jamey Bergman, U.K. Content Editor