|78°14.2’N / 015°36.9’E
Finally the big day has arrived! It was a lovely sunny day to have a coffee outside and enjoy the warm rays of the northern summer sun. When we arrived at the pier to embark on Hondius around 4PM, we were greeted by the Expedition Team members. They all were very friendly and helped us a great deal with our luggage, which was tagged carefully and transferred to the ship. After sorting our luggage, we put our life jackets on and had our very first Zodiac ride to the vessel. There we received a warm welcome from the Oceanwide hotel department. Soon after, our expedition leader Sarah welcomed us on board and invited all of us to the observation lounge for a mandatory safety briefing and a ship’s safety drill.
After completing the mandatory drill, we were once more invited to the observation lounge and raised our glasses with Captain Toni Salo. The anchor was lifted, and our journey began. We were on our way! Although we already had some delicious canapés, it was now time to further enjoy our galley team’s creative menu in the dining room. We enjoyed our food while sailing past beautiful landscapes, and the sun was shining bright on the horizon. We were so far north that we had daylight 24/7, and that was a great experience on its own.
The day was almost done, but not just yet. We were called to get our muck boots from our energetic Expedition Staff. Most of our landings would be wet landings and most terrain we visit could be quite wet as well, so proper muck boots were required and supplied by the Expedition Team. Once we had found a comfortable pair, it was time to relax. For some of us that meant a drink in the bar while we got to know our fellow travelers. For the rest it was already bedtime. A long and exciting journey was ahead.