Ponant Opens Sales For Luxury Polar Vessel Le Commandant-Charcot
Ponant, the French-owned luxury expedition cruise line, is open sales on June 13 for the summer 2021 Arctic itineraries aboard the new Le Commandant-Charcot. The hybrid electric ship, powered by Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG), will be the first luxury passenger vessel to travel to the Geographic North Pole at 90 degrees north latitude. Winter 2021-2022 cruises on the ship to Antarctica will open for bookings on Dec. 5, 2019 and are currently available for pre-bookings.
Aboard Le Commandant-Charcot, guests will discover new itineraries to the geographic North Pole, the eastern coast of Greenland, the Northwest Passage, the Ross Sea, and the Charcot and Peter I Islands. Usually inaccessible to a classically designed ship at this time of the year because of the ice floe, the vessel’s innovative routing software makes it possible to slip through the naturally formed channels in the ice and the ship’s engines are able to free the vessel when necessary from denser sea ice. The ship is designed to take passengers to the most southern and northern latitudes of the planet in luxury.
Designed to be a new type of cruise ship, Le Commandant-Charcot incorporates all the latest innovations in environmental protection, making Ponant model of excellence in responsible tourism. With its hybrid propulsion combining liquefied natural gas (LNG) and electric generators, the ship has been designed to minimize its environmental impact. It also hosts a scientific research laboratory equipped to study the ecosystems and biodiversity of this polar setting. Ponant points out that Le Commandant-Charcot is the first exploration vessel to surpass the ecological standards set out in international regulations.
A polar exploration ship with PC2 Polar Class certification, Le Commandant-Charcot will be able to reach the Geographic North Pole and remote parts of Antarctica such as the Ross Sea, or the Charcot and Peter I islands. The ship’s inaugural cruise sails between Iceland and Greenland. Highlights include a stop where the Pourquoi Pas? IV sunk off the coast of the Alftanes Peninsula for a small ceremony in memoriam, an excursion on Jan Mayen Island to explore the volcanic rock and wild tundra, and a journey through the Scoresby Sund, the world’s largest fjord network. The first cruise sails from Le Havre to Reykjavik over 15 days (14 nights) departing May 31, 2021. Prices start at $18,150 per person double.
Another 11-day cruise will sail along the east coast of Greenland offering a unique opportunity to explore shores that long remained isolated due to a thick layer of ice that protected the coastline. Le Commandant-Charcot will sail north from the region of Ammassalik to the coast of Blosseville, a place filled with jagged peaks that was identified in 1833 by Commander Blosseville during a voyage that caused his disappearance and that of his crew. The cruise sails from Reykjavik to Reykjavik for days (10 nights) departing June 14, 2021. Prices start at $12,340 per person double.
Lying at a latitude of 90° North, the geographic North Pole is a mythical point covered by ice floe year round and 435 miles from any emerged land. Setting sail from Spitzbergen, Le Commandant-Charcot will sail through landscapes that are constantly evolving according to changes in the ice and the light. This itinerary lends itself perfectly to the observation of the wildlife, including polar bears, Arctic foxes, and Svalbard reindeer, particularly abundant at this time of year. The ship will continue on into the heart of the pack ice, the North Pole. This cruise sails from Reykjavik to Longyearbyen for 16 days (15 nights) departing Aug. 8, 2021. Two additional departures will be offered in August 2021. Prices start at $29,100 per person double.
A veritable labyrinth of channels covered by ice for much of the year, the Northwest Passage is located beyond the Arctic Circle. From Iceland to Alaska, Le Commandant-Charcot will sail to the most inaccessible sites where John Franklin, Robert McClure and Roald Amundsen led the great polar expeditions of the past. Guests will cross the Bellot Strait, a key point of the North-West Passage, and sail along Banks Island, famous for the wreck of HMS Investigator lying offshore as well as its national park. This cruise sails form Reykjavik to Nome for 25 days (24 nights) departing Sept. 7, 2021. Prices start at $33,460 per person double.
As the only French-owned cruise line, Ponant was created in 1988 by Jean Emmanuel Sauvée and a dozen officers of the French Merchant Navy. Today, it is leading the way with a new style of luxury cruising through a unique conception of sea travel which combines exceptional itineraries and luxury hotel services, aboard smaller-scale ships. For more information, click on www.ponant.com.