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National Geographic Explorer exterior

National Geographic Explorer Arctic and Antarctic Cruises

Arguably the finest expedition cruise ship on the Polar seas

A polar cruise on board the National Geographic Explorer

National Geographic Explorer exterior
National Geographic Explorer exterior
National Geographic Explorer exterior

The flagship of the National Geographic fleet, the Explorer travels from pole to pole each year, spending winters in Antarctica and summers in the Arctic.

The National Geographic Explorer is arguably the finest expedition vessel on the seas. A state-of-the-art, ice-class expedition ship, the Explorer comfortably accommodates 148 guests in 81 spacious cabins, each with outside views, private en-suite bathrooms, and a sleek, modern style.

The ship carries kayaks and a fleet of zodiacs, as well as sophisticated video equipment that allows access to the underwater world. Public areas include a lounge and bar, a library, a spa, a fitness center, and a sauna. Services include a full-time doctor, a wellness specialist, and an Internet café.

Amenities on board the National Geographic Explorer



doctor's suitcase

Medical Services


Observation Lounge


Fitness Center







zodiac fleet

Zodiac Fleet

Food & Drinks on board the National Geographic Explorer

The National Geographic Explorer includes a selection of dining options that offer regionally inspired cuisine using fresh, local ingredients.

National Geographic Explorer's take on sustainable traveling

The unique travel experiences aboard the Explorer aim to inspire people to care about the planet by providing meaningful opportunities to explore it. The National Geographic Explorer is committed to sustaining the character and integrity of each destination she visits by supporting local economies and by empowering passionate passengers who remain committed to protecting the places and people they encounter, long after returning home.

Every year, National Geographic distributes a portion of its proceeds to the non-profit National Geographic Society, which awards more than 575 grants a year to scientists, educators, innovators, and storytellers around the globe who are working to preserve species and ecosystems, protect cultures, and advance understanding of our planet and its inhabitants.

These initiatives include the Pristine Seas Project, which seeks to identify and preserve the last untouched areas in the ocean.

More info about the National Geographic Explorer

Mid-Sized Ship
112 meters
16.5 meters
Cruising speed
15.4 Knots
4.7 meters
Gross tonnage
6471 Tons

Similar Ships

National Geographic Endurance

National Geographic Endurance

The *National Geographic Endurance* was launched in 2020 and is one of the newest arctic and antarctic exploration vessels currently operating. She was named in honor of the ship of the famous polar explorer Ernest Shackleton. Built from the ground up to navigate remote polar regions year-round, she was also designed to provide exceptional comfort for her passengers. The *National Geographic Endurance* can safely explore notoriously difficult waters with ease, including passages off Northeast Greenland, journeying to the remote Jan Mayen island, navigating the infamous Northeast Passage, and more. The *National Geographic Endurance* offers accommodation for only 126 guests in 69 spacious cabins, all of which are outside facing and enjoy large windows or balconies, private bathrooms, individual climate control, Wi-Fi, and a state-of-the-art expedition command center with tablets and USB/mobile device docking. As well as a fleet of robust zodiacs, she’s also equipped with kayaks, snowshoes, and cross-country skis, allowing guests to explore areas on foot that can’t be experienced on other vessels. In addition, she is equipped with specialized equipment that allows the onboard naturalist guides unique access and ability to share the underwater world with guests. Public areas include a lounge with a relaxed bar, a gym, a yoga studio, an infinity-edge outdoor hot tub, saunas with ocean views, a well-stocked library, a spa, a state-of-the-art lecture room, and a photo workshop area. Services aboard the ship include a full-time doctor, a National Geographic photographer, a certified photo instructor, a video chronicler, a wellness specialist, a laundry service, and an internet café.

Sylvia Earle

Sylvia Earle

Welcome aboard the Sylvia Earle, a brand-new cruise ship named after the first female chief scientist of the U.S. National and Atmospheric Administration. Sylvia Earle was also named by Time Magazine as its first Hero for the Planet in 1998. Set to sail in November 2022, this powerful new ship honors Sylvia’s long-standing marine conservation efforts. Built for intense weather conditions, the Sylvia Earle is a pioneer in nautical technology. Sail the Arctic or the Antarctic like never before aboard one of the most modern and elegant cruise ships. The Sylvia Earle was created for the most rugged and remote trips. It features the Ulstein X-BOW®, which cuts through swell so passengers feel fewer vibrations during ocean crossings. If you are prone to seasickness, this cruise ship will make your polar voyage much more comfortable. The Ulstein X-BOW® also reduces fuel consumption by up to 60%. A Sylvia Earle polar cruise offers passengers a wide array of cabin choices to suit any comfort level. Whether you are embarking on a solo polar adventure or bringing along the entire family, the Sylvia Earle cruise ship will happily accommodate your needs. Each en suite cabin features great amenities like a room-controlled thermostat, a safe, plenty of closet space, a 42’’ flat-screen TV, and much more. You won’t need to compromise comfort on your Arctic or Antarctic cruise. Just like Sylvia Earle herself, preserving and protecting the fragile Arctic and Antarctic environments is one of the most important values aboard a Sylvia Earle polar cruise and is reflected in many features aboard the ship. The Sylvia Earle is proud to be one of the lowest polluting ships in the world due to its high fuel efficiency and streamlined design delivering an 80% reduction in emissions. The Sylvia Earle also uses a virtual anchor thanks to GPS and steering technology. This significantly minimizes damage to the sea floor usually caused by regular anchors. The Sylvia Earle was built for adventure cruising. The brand new ship carries many zodiacs, which you can board via 4 different platforms. These platforms make boarding quick and easy so passengers can enjoy more time on their polar expeditions. On the zodiacs, you’ll venture through small riverbeds inaccessible by larger ships, and you’ll get a closer look at the impressive Arctic and Antarctic flora and fauna. A Sylvia Earle polar cruise also offers a range of optional activities lead by expert guides from kayaking, diving, climbing, and ski touring. The Sylvia Ealer is an expedition ship constructed to support all outdoor experiences so each passenger can maximize their time on board. The Sylvia Earle is also equipped with a Mudroom- the launchpad for all polar cruise expeditions. Guests will have access to locker rooms with drying areas to hang up their gear in between each polar excursion. The Sylvia Earle expedition team is eager to educate all of its guests about the history, culture, biology, and climate change of the polar regions. On your Arctic or Antarctic cruise, you’ll meet naturalists and local specialists in the state-of-the-art lecture theater for educational and highly entertaining presentations. The Sylvia Earle cruise ship library is also a great place to relax, pick up a good book, play board games, view and organize your trip photos, or just stare out the floor-to-ceiling windows. In between expeditions, make sure to enjoy the heated saltwater open-air swimming pool and jacuzzis on board the Sylvia Earle, where the Arctic and Antarctic views will leave you in awe. For even more relaxation, visit the wellness center aboard the cruise ship, equipped with a gym, sauna, and professional massage therapists.

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