World’s first hybrid-powered cruise ship to be named in Antarctica

MS Roald Amundsen
MS Roald Amundsen

Hurtigruten has announced the first-ever ship naming ceremony in Antarctica for the hybrid-powered expedition cruise ship MS Roald Amundsen.

The naming ceremony will take place this fall, as the first world’s first hybrid-powered cruise ship makes her way to the white continent on her maiden Antarctica voyage.

“We can think of no better place to name the truly unique MS Roald Amundsen than the waters of Antarctica – where no ship has ever been christened before,” said Hurtigruten CEO Daniel Skjeldam.

Roald Amundsen. Photo: National Library
Roald Amundsen. Photo: National Library

Named after polar hero Roald Amundsen — who led the first expedition to traverse the Northwest Passage, the first expedition to the south pole and the first expedition proven to have reached the North Pole – the MS Roald Amundsen naming ceremony is set to honour his legacy with a ritual invented by Amundsen himself.

When christening his famed expedition ship ‘Maud’ in 1917, Roald Amundsen switched the traditional bottle of champagne for a chunk of ice. Before crushing the ice against her bow, he said: “It is not my intention to dishonour the glorious grape, but already now you shall get the taste of your real environment. For the ice you have been built, and in the ice, you shall stay most of your life, and in the ice, you shall solve your tasks.”

Hurtigruten – and the yet to be disclosed godmother – will use the same ritual when naming MS Roald Amundsen.

“To honour Roald Amundsen and his explorer heritage, we will revive his ritual. With over 125 years of Polar experience, Hurtigruten will use the first-ever ship naming ceremony in Antarctica to pay our respects to our oceans, the environment and past and present explorers,” added Skjeldam.

Hurtigruten’s hybrid-powered MS Roald Amundsen made maritime history by being the first cruise ship in the world to sail purely on battery power as she left Kleven yard for her maiden voyage off the coast of Norway in late June.

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