alaska_cruise_vesselIn 1906, polar explorer Roald Amundsen completed the first successful navigation of the Northwest Passage. He took 3 years to make the nearly 900-mile trip.

Now, Crystal Cruises’ Serenity is following in Amundsen’s footsteps, but thankfully its journey will be much faster.

The ship is currently just past the halfway point in its 32-day voyage through the Northwest Passage. So far, Serenity and its 1,000 passengers have enjoyed smooth sailing, and are looking forward to a successful conclusion in New York on September 16th.

Crystal’s Serenity is leading the industry as the first ship of its kind and size to embark on such a challenging itinerary. Guests were excited to be a part of the historic sailing – the cruise sold out within just 48 hours.

Why is it so hard for ships to navigate the Northwest Passage? For most of the year, the oceans are frozen over with ice, with icebergs also lurking beneath the surface. Global warming has reduced the amount of ice since Amundsen’s time, but sailing is still extremely perilous.

Crystal’s Serenity is equipped with state-of-the-art imaging and radar equipment. In addition, it is accompanied by an icebreaking boat as well as two helicopters.

Crystal is offering a similar Northwest Passage itinerary in 2017, a 32-day cruise from Anchorage to New York City. If you weren’t able to go this year, ask your Stellar Travel advisor about securing your spot on Crystal’s next voyage.

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