Part of the
Hurtigruten Group

Taking Sustainability Seriously

Exploring our blue planet for more than a century has taught us the importance of sustainability efforts.

Meaningful Change

As a result, we are now supporting 41 environmental, cultural and social projects in 11 different countries. These range from helping endangered orcas in the Pacific Northwest and protecting Galápagos seabirds, to securing safe spaces for vulnerable Greenlandic children and enabling community storytelling for the Itquamavit elders in Canada’s frozen north. We hope that the ripples we create today will one day turn into the waves of the future.

Science in the Antarctic

Saying goodbye to unnecessary single-use plastic

We announced our war on plastics in 2018 when we were the first expedition company to ban non-essential single-use plastic throughout our entire operation. That means items like plastic cups, plastic straws or plastic cutlery are banned from our ships. You also won’t see our shops selling microplastic-made fleeces but stocking natural wool clothing instead. Absent too are plastic water bottles. We provide all our guests on an expedition cruise with a complimentary high-quality reusable bottle for use at water refill stations dotted around the ship. This simple act saves at least 1,000 plastic bottles a day on some of our larger ships.

Inspiring Environmental Ambassadors

Witnessing the beauty of our planet is sure to leave a lasting impression on you, and you’ll talk enthusiastically about these stunning destinations with friends and family for decades to come. To make sure you can speak informatively when you return home, every one of our expedition cruises has a focus on the environment. The Expedition Team give lectures that raise awareness of climate change, ocean plastic, and the measures we can all take to help ease these issues. It is our hope that engaging with nature on our expedition cruises will inspire you to do all you can to cherish and protect the precious world we all share.

Connecting With Communities

We are dedicated to supporting the local communities we visit, and to creating beneficial ripple effects that continue long after we’ve left. By trading locally and sourcing services such as food produce and excursions from local suppliers, we contribute to the livelihood and welfare of people. We strive not only to connect with these communities, but to share genuine friendship with them while always respecting their values and customs. As guests in their home, our emphasis is on appreciating their unique culture and ensuring our interactions are positive and upbuilding for all. You can therefore enjoy authentic experiences knowing your visit is doing good, both for you and for them.

A Footprint We’re Proud Of

You’ll likely encounter a range of wildlife during your expedition, doing so from a safe distance. We’ll be sure to never get too close to them, out of respect for their welfare as much as yours. By not disturbing wildlife with our presence, you’ll be able to observe their natural behaviour, in their natural habitat. We want to leave nothing but footprints and take nothing but pictures!

Working Together As One

Sustainability efforts aren't something we can do alone. Everyone in our industry needs to work together for a more sustainable future. We are therefore founding members of the Association of Arctic Expedition Cruise Operators (AECO) and members of the International Association of Antarctica Tour Operators (IAATO). These trade member organisations work to establish sustainable tourism in polar regions, fighting mass tourism by limiting ships and shore visits, and creating guidelines that protect fragile environments and rare wildlife.

Serving Plant-Based Food

Our menus offer an array of delicious plant-based dishes, designed to promote healthier living, and give you the chance to try tasty vegan and vegetarian cuisine. We’ve also put in place food management waste programmes on all our ships, and in 2023 saw a 22% decrease in food waste per guest.

Investing in Greener Tech

Building our two new hybrid-powered expedition ships, MS Roald Amundsen and MS Fridtjof Nansen, represents the biggest investment in our almost 130 years of history. They are packed with state-of-the-art technology, such as battery packs, heat recovery systems, and a cutting-edge hull design. These innovations combined reduce carbon emissions by more than 20 %, compared to other cruise ships of the same size. We stopped using heavy fuel oil more than a decade ago and campaign for its worldwide ban.

Doing Your Part

There are a range of simple things you can get involved in during your cruise to do your bit. Help out on a beach clean-up where the refuse we collect is brought back onto the ship to be recycled. Citizen Science projects get you to observe our natural world closely and contribute to current research. Even hanging a tag on your cabin door to say your towels and bed sheets don’t need changing can help save energy and water. You also have the option to donate to the Hurtigruten Foundation which funds projects around the world. We are trying to build a more sustainable standard for expedition cruising. You can be sure we will continue with our commitment to sustainability; leading the way with greener tech, working towards protecting our planet, supporting local communities, and inspiring more to action.

Earth Day 2023

This is how we're helping to protect our planet.

Penguins perched on the ice of Cuverville Island, Antarctica. Credit: Espen Mills / HX Hurtigruten Expeditions

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