In 2014, Silversea Cruises will expand its itinerary and ship options with the introduction of a new expedition vessel to the luxury cruise line – the Silver Discoverer. The 128-guest ship (seen above and below) is currently being refurbished before entering service in March 2014 as the third vessel for Silversea Expeditions and eighth ship for Silversea Cruises overall. She joins the Silver Explorer and the Silver Galapagos, also new to the expedition fleet.
Five luxurious suite categories will be available onboard the 5,218 ton ship, and facilities include a swimming pool, gym, beauty salon, restaurant, pool grill, lecture room and panoramic lounge. Expedition gear consists of 12 Zodiac boats as well as a glass-bottomed boat. Silversea expresses that “guests will benefit from the huge knowledge and experience of the highly qualified Silversea Expeditions team consisting of 11 experts, from expedition leaders, divemasters and marine biologists to historians, geologists and naturalists.”
Impressively, Silversea’s expedition division has only been in operation since 2008 and has already “established itself as the world’s leading, ultra-luxury expedition cruise line enabling guests to view extraordinary scenery; get closer to marine life and wildlife; as well as viewing first-hand some of the world’s last wildernesses in a manner that is sympathetic to the environment,” according to the cruise line. Silversea Expeditions essentially offers passengers the chance to experience the rugged wilds without sacrificing Silversea Cruises’ luxurious lifestyle.
Silver Discoverer will deploy to “remote areas of Micronesia, Melanesia, Polynesia in addition to the Russian Far East, Southeast Asia, New Zealand and Australia, including one of its hidden treasures, the Kimberley,” says Silversea. Highlights of these exotic itineraries – only a small portion of Silversea Cruises’ extensive 2014 list of destinations – are outlined by the cruise line below:
The Kimberley – Australia’s Hidden Treasure – April 2014 – 11 days
Thundering waterfalls, plunging gorges, Aboriginal rock art, deserted beaches and fewer people per square mile than almost any other place on earth — this is The Kimberley. Cruise by Zodiac through an untamed wilderness, searching for eagles and ospreys in the mangroves, and mud flats, and keeping an eye out for saltwater crocodiles. Witness the spectacular tidal change at Montgomery Reef, view King George’s towering twin falls plunging over 551 feet, experience the sheer vastness of Mitchell Falls from a helicopter, photograph the spectacular Bungle Bungles with their black and orange bands. Embark in either Darwin or Broome, Western Australia.
Wild Siberia: The Sea of Okhotsk – June 2014 – 19 days
Long closed to Westerners, the Russian Far East is one of the planet’s least explored and most remarkable destinations. Here you’ll find untouched forests, pristine tundra and vast amounts of wildlife: brown bears for hunting salmon, basking seals and sea lions in the thousands, millions of seabirds breeding and feeding their young. Even whales, including the rare western Grey Whale, have begun to return to the Sea of Okhotsk. From Sakhalin and the western Kamchatka Peninsula to the Kuril Islands, this voyage explores the remote region where nature has exceeded herself, and travellers have only begun to set foot. Highlights included cruising by Zodiac to search for bears, arctic foxes, sea otters, seals, whales and the mighty Steller Sea Eagle; photographing smoking, snow-caped volcanoes; exploring rivers with salmon as they roar through taiga forests and following in the historic wake of legendary explorer, Vitus Bering, the founder of Petropavlovsk. Embark and disembark in Otaru, Hokkaido, Japan.
The Many Faces of Indonesia – March 2014 – 17 days
Labeled as “The Country of a Thousand Islands,” Indonesia is in fact a country of over 17,000 islands sprinkled across the Indian and Pacific Oceans between Malaysia and Australia. The world’s largest archipelago is an astonishingly beautiful nation with its powdery white beaches, sparkling turquoise seas, jade landscapes and misty volcanoes. Highlights of this 17-day voyage include visiting Komodo Island and enjoying close encounters with the world’s largest lizard; snorkeling with dazzling tropical fish; and going on a “mock” whale hunt with the whalers of Lamalera.
Micronesia, Melanesia, Polynesia – November 2014 – 18 days
From Cairns in Australia to Auckland, New Zealand via some of the most remote atolls in the Pacific Ocean. You will experience some of the best snorkeling and diving in the world, as well as participate in local traditional ceremonies and learn about ancient customs. The fleet of Zodiac boats enable Silversea guests to visit small islands and atolls simply not possible with larger ships. Among the highlights are the chance to explore the Phoenix Islands protected area in Kiribati, Bora Bora and New Caledonia, the Cook Islands, Kennedy Island also known as Plum Pudding Island in Solomon Islands, Luganville and Champagne Beach in Vanuatu.
For more information on Silversea Expeditions and the Silver Discoverer specifically, visit the cruise line’s website here. Are you excited about this new vessel in Silversea’s lineup? Please feel free to share your thoughts in the comments section below…
HEADER IMAGE SOURCE: SILVERSEA CRUISES