In true Norwegian style, Hurtirgruten's MS Lofoten is all about stripping back the clutter from our lives and getting back to basics, with this small cruise vessel taking a more natural approach to seafaring than most other commercial tourist ships.
With a capacity for just 151 passengers, the MS Lofoten is certainly not your average cruise liner, and comes with an in-built sense of escape and relief from the overcrowded world we live in. As such, the vessel perfectly reflects the stunningly isolated places it visits, with the awe-inspiring landscapes of Norway's Fjord's and Arctic territories being best enjoyed with as few people as possible.
All elements of the ship perfectly compliment this sense of remoteness and seclusion, with facilities being basic yet adequate. Cabins, for instance, provide everything you could need without being overly elaborate, with the majority of these being double occupancy - although there are also a limited number of individual and four-berth rooms.
The decor is cosy and charming, and in many ways resembles a typical Norwegian log cabin, with wooden flooring and a number of comfy sofas and armchairs to relax in. The walls are decorated with oil paintings of Norwegian landscapes, many of which you will see in all their glory as you pass them on your voyage.
Dining onboard the MS Lofoten is a friendly and intimate affair, with the majority of passengers eating together in the main dining room. Tables seat either four or six people, which makes mingling with fellow voyagers easy and helps to create a sociable atmosphere.
The food itself is of excellent quality, with a buffet breakfast and a la carte lunch and dinner, including both international and Norwegian cuisine.
For those who would rather dine in slightly less formal surroundings, there is a cafe that serves a range of snacks and light meals.
The MS Lofoten is certainly not a vessel for divas, but exists instead for the purpose of enabling passengers to appreciate the immense power and beauty of nature. As such, it doesn't offer any of the all-singing-all-dancing entertainment you'd expect to find on other cruise liners.
It's all about the minimalist approach, with a number of bars and lounges offering wonderful views out to sea, allowing the scenery to take over and provide the main form of entertainment. In this way, passengers are able to form a much deeper connection with the landscapes through which they are travelling, appreciating their surroundings to the full, with very few distractions.
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