From passport and VISA requirements to general on-board information - get to know the MS Midnatsol before you embark on your explorer voyage.
Please remember that only beverages purchased from the ship's restaurants and bars can be consumed on board. Alcoholic beverages purchased in ports-of-call and from our on-board shops will be stored by the ship and delivered to your cabin on the last day of the sailing. According to Norwegian law, persons over the age of 18 are allowed to purchase beer and wine. Spirits are only available to persons over the age of 20.
We are sailing in waters where the elements rule, and weather, sea and ice conditions may affect the itinerary. Because of this, the routes and excursions are provisional and subject to change. Excursions may also be subject to minimum/maximum number of participants. We reserve the right to change the itinerary and the content of excursions without prior notice.
The flight from Santiago de Chile to Punta Arenas and the return flight are part of your voyage. The flight from Santiago usually departs early in the morning and the return flight arrives in the afternoon when returning in Santiago. Please note that the airline will confirm the final flight times only a few days prior to the day of departure. For final flight times and your boarding pass, please contact our hospitality desk at the Hotel in Santiago de Chile one day prior. If you do not have an overnight stay at the end of your voyage, please do not book your international flight from Santiago de Chile before 20:00! We are unable to accept responsibility if you miss your return flight in the event of any delay.
MS Midnatsol cannot accept children under the age of 5 to travel with us to Antarctica. There is no age restriction on our other destinations. For safety reasons, children under 12 years of age will be individually considered on each landing. It is entirely at the Captain’s discretion to allow children on shore landings.
To hear all announcements in the cabin, the TV has to be set to a channel number. Check you cabin folder for the specific channel number once on board. Important updates to our programme and emergency information will be announced in the cabins via separate speakers overriding all other audio in the cabin.
The ship is suitable for wheel chairs. Persons in need of special assistance must travel with a companion. Please note that the ship’s gangway must be used in order to embark/disembark wheelchairs. In ports where tidal conditions or other circumstances require use of a portable gangway, or during landings with tender boats, it is not possible to use/take wheelchairs.
Our Captains take pride in route planning that minimises the load of the engines and reduces emissions. All waste is stored on board until it is deposited for treatment ashore. We never dump waste in the sea and we ask you not to leave any waste when you are on shore excursions. In populated areas there are containers for depositing waste, please use them.
The emphasis on board is on discovery and edutainment, and not on commercial entertainment often part of conventional cruises. Our extensive on board programme is designed to suit most passengers and have something for everybody. Our knowledgeable experts cover a wide range of fields, and know how to create interest and make you enthusiastic about their knowledge. On board there will also be a “science laboratory”, where we do field experiments. For example, we may study 3 million years old ice through a microscope or study meteors found on shore, and hear interesting and stimulating lectures on several topics. Our aim is to get you closer to unique environments and to allow you to share the experience with your fellow travellers.
The ship complies with all safety requirements and is a modern vessel suitable for sailing in icy waters. Upon arrival on board all passengers will be instructed in safety procedures, and the use and location of the safety equipment. There is a safety plan on the inside of the cabin door. We stress the importance of becoming acquainted with the ships safety plan. Special safety regulations will apply on landings with the tender boats. Please follow the instructions given by the Expedition Leader and crew/staff. Special lifejackets for use during landings will be handed out to all passengers before first landing. A mandatory briefing regarding the safety guidelines will also be given.
In accordance with IAATO and Hurtigruten AS requirements, all travellers to Antarctica and on board the Trans-Atlantic Crossing must complete a confidential medical declaration form, signed by a doctor, stating that they are fit to travel. This form will be sent to you well in advance. The form must be filled in, brought on board the ship and personally delivered to the doctor upon embarkation. Boarding may be denied if these forms are not presented at time of embarkation.
There is an English-speaking physician and nurse on board at all times. The ship has a small medical facility with the necessary equipment and drugs to handle small emergencies. In the event of a serious emergency, the nearest hospital will be contacted. Medical consultations as well as medicines will be charged to the passenger affected. All guests must have personal travel/health insurance. If you depend on medication, remember to bring sufficient supplies to last through any unforeseen delays. We also recommend that you keep your medication in your hand luggage properly labelled and with clear instructions for its use. If you depend on vital drugs, please inform the ship’s doctor upon arrival. Illness on board can lead to quarantine and orders from the ship’s physician and captain, must be followed.
Please take a few minutes to familiarise yourself with the required travel documents you will be asked to provide prior to boarding the ship. It is the sole responsibility of the guest to identify and obtain all required travel documents and have them available when necessary.
Passport is the only valid identification for all of our voyages aboard MS Midnatsol. ID-cards are not accepted. The passport needs to be valid for more than six months after you return to your home country. At check-in passports will be collected by the crew on board the vessel, in order to clear immigrations and customs. Passports will be kept throughout the whole voyage and returned at the end of the trip. Please bring a photocopy of the passport with you.
It is the guests' responsibility to identify and to obtain the necessary visas before commencing their cruise. Based on nationality, many countries still require an entry visa. We regret we are unable to accept any liability if you are denied access to a flight or entry into a country or are otherwise affected by difficulties or costs resulting from your passport not being approved or if you have not obtained the required visa or other documentation.
The sturdy boats enable both water-based exploration and safe landings in otherwise inaccessible areas. You will need to be fairly agile to board these but there is otherwise no need to worry about travelling in them. The crew will show you what to do and as long as you follow their instructions, after a few days it will become second nature. On all landings in small boats guests are expected to wear proper footwear. In Antarctica it is mandatory to use rubber boots for all landings. For all other destinations boots can be useful. You are welcome to bring private boots, or you can rent a pair on board. Small boat landings depend on favourable conditions.
MS Midnatsol complies with the ISPS-regulations (International Ship and Port Security System) where all luggages are subject to X-ray/metal detector inspection upon arrival port facility or ship. You are kindly asked to keep this in mind packing your luggage for the voyage. The ISPS regulations also include hand baggage scan in all ports of call throughout the course of the voyage.
If you have special requests (e.g. dietary or medical) please inform us at time of booking. We will do our best to meet such requests but cannot guarantee to do so and under no circumstance will any such request be accepted by us so as to form part of a contractual agreement.
Check with your General Practitioner regarding the recommended vaccinations for your journey.
On board dress is informal. Although some passengers choose to change for dinner the dress code is casual rather than formal. The weather can vary during the course of each voyage or even during the day. To cater for these variations, we recommend the layered dress approach that enables you to adapt to changes in temperature, wind and precipitation conditions easily. For all voyages we advise you to take breathable rain and windproof clothing. A warm hat, gloves, scarf and thermal clothing can be useful, together with thermal underwear, during the winter months. On land where it may be icy, sturdy shoes are important for shore excursions and a walking stick/trekking pole may be useful. See our What to Pack page for more information.
A suitable assortment of the required clothing is also available in our on-ship store. The items are carefully chosen to fit the climate we travel in.
You may enjoy many services whilst MS Midnatsol takes you close to nature and wildlife. No dressing up for dinner – no fuss, no frenzy – our aim is to sail calmly through the crisp clean air, close to the ever-changing environment.
We use a PA system to convey messages about important updates or reminders to our programme and emergency information will be announced in the cabins via separate speakers overriding all other audio in the cabin.
The name MS Midnatsol (Midnight Sun) is something to live up to, and this ship, dedicated to the Norwegian summer, does just that. The interior is bright and the colourful décor is inspired by the warm sunny climate, a motif also reflected in the many pieces of Norwegian modern art on display.
The ship has a bar with a wide selection of spirits, wines, beers and soft drinks and a lounge with coffee service.
There is a wide range of comfortable cabins on board, all with private bathrooms.
Please note that check in hours in reception may open before the cabin is ready for use. You will be informed at check-in when your cabin is ready for you. You may expect some noise and vibration in some cabins. This varies depending on the location of your cabin. Also, noise affects people differently and what may be a problem for one person may not be a problem for others. Please note that cabins on deck 6 with passenger access to outside areas may sometimes have an obstructed view due to other passengers walking past. Please ask our reservation team for advice on the best cabin location for you.
A cruise card will be issued upon arrival on board as part of the check in procedure in accordance with ISPS regulations. All our guests are requested to wear this card when disembarking the ship in all ports of call and landings. The card serves as a control system on the gangway enabling the ship to know which of our guests are on board and ashore at any time. This card, in addition to being the key card for your cabin, is also your payment card on board. The card is the only means of payment for the on board facilities.
To activate the cruise card account you must have a Visa, American Express, Diners or MasterCard. The credit card must be valid more than 3 months after your stay on board. We regret that our system does not support Maestro Card. Please note that when using your credit card on board the ship, your account will be debited in NOK. The rate of exchange will be the one validated by your credit card company. The evening before the voyage ends the account will be totalled and settled on board, and a receipt brought to your cabin. We regret that there is no facility for cash withdrawals or currency exchange on board.
The plugs in your cabins are all 220V/50hz. Suites have 110V for Shavers. The plugs are continental two pin plugs. Adapters are available for purchase in the shop.
The emphasis on board is on relaxation and discovery, and not on the commercial entertainment that is so often a part of conventional cruises. Our aim is to get you closer to unique environments and to allow you to share the experience with your fellow travellers. Occasionally there may be some musical entertainment on board in the evenings.
The fitness room with panorama view is located on deck 9. The sauna is located next to the fitness room. Available for all guests – please use your cabin card to enter the fitness room.
Outside on deck 9 you will find our Jacuzzis (whirlpools). Bring your swimsuit and enjoy the beautiful scenery we are passing along the coast. Swim suits and bathing clothes can be purchased in the shop on deck 5.
We in Hurtigruten have learned that many of our guests wish to acknowledge our service crew on board. It is at you discretion to honour service rendered by the crew in bars, restaurant and cabins. In order to give you some guidelines, we recommend 80 NOK (approx. AU$12 / NZ$13) per guest per day as an average gratuity. Whatever amount you decide to give, please fill in the form you will find in your cabin and give it to the receptionist two nights before the end of the cruise. The amount will then be debited to your cruise account.
Guide dogs are accepted on board and can be booked in dedicated cabins. The guide dogs can stay in all public areas on board except for the restaurant, where the blind/visually impaired guest will be assisted by one of the crew members. Assistance by the crew is offered at all times when this is required by the blind or visually impaired guest.
On deck 4, you will find our reception. The expedition desk on deck 9, where the staff is available to answer your questions. The lecture hall is on deck 5.
A complimentary Explorer jacket can be picked up upon arrival to the vessel.
The language on board is English. Announcements and written information are also given in German. In order to be able to accommodate lectures in another language than English, we will offer a possibility for an “in ear” translation to German.
A laundry service is available on board at low cost. No self-service or dry-cleaning is possible.
The ship’s experienced lecturers’ command an in-depth knowledge of the areas in which we sail. They will give, on a regular basis, lectures on topics such as biology, history and geology throughout the course of the journey. The lecturing schedule will be announced every day in the on board daily programme. Do not hesitate to contact our Expedition Team for any questions or concerns you might have.
The ship has a small selection of books on different topics that is available to guests while on board.
MS Midnatsols Observation Lounges are on deck 8 and 9. Here you find large panoramic windows, ample comfortable seats and binoculars so you can view the wildlife and details of the ever-changing landscape.
MS Midnatsol has spacious outdoor areas. There is a large viewing area on deck 9. Perfect vantage point to sit back, relax and watch the world go by.
You can hand in your mail in the reception, and for a limited amount covering service fee and stamps we will forward the post in every port where it is possible. The time used from sending the postcard to when it gets to the receiver may be relatively long. Hurtigruten AS accepts no responsibility for lost mail.
On board we serve a buffet breakfast and lunch. Regular coffee/tea is complimentary throughout the whole voyage. Dinner varies between buffets, set meals and barbeques. The type of dinner is announced in the daily programme. Our Head Waiter will assign tables prior to arrival. Information about table number and meal times will be in your cabin upon arrival. Please provide information regarding special requests for seating arrangements to your sales office/travel agent. At some voyages we might serve the dinner divided into Boat groups. If you have special dietary requirements, such as vegetarian, diabetic or gluten free, please inform your sales office/travel agent as early as possible, and contact the Head Waiter when on board. The Chefs will do their best to meet your dietary requirements. Beer, wine and soft drinks are sold in the restaurant during lunch and dinner. Complimentary sparkling and still water will be served for lunch and dinner.
The cabins are cleaned daily. For suite guests we will offer a room service menu.
On board you may rent a pair of high quality boots for a low cost to wear during landings and hikes. These boots will be kept on the ships tender deck, and you will have your private pair during the whole voyage.
We also offer walking sticks and a small selection of warm thermo suits for rent at a low cost.
The resident photographers will invite you to photography workshops and practical sessions out on deck to enable you to take the best possible pictures from your voyage.
Seasickness pills are available for purchase in the reception. If you are prone to seasickness it is recommended that you bring pills that you are familiar with. You may also buy “sea bands” on board.
In our on board shop you can buy modern clothes suitable for Explorer voyages. Our Expedition Team will be happy to give you expert advice on how to dress properly in polar areas. We offer a great range of both warm and practical clothing, and we focus fabrics with natural fibres. We also offer souvenirs, handicrafts, and postcards at good prices. In addition we also stock a small selection of soap, toothpaste and other personal effects.
A selection of shore excursions is available to pre-book. Where available we will supply you with excursion information in advance, otherwise you will receive full details and prices on board. Excursions and their contents are subject to maximum/minimum number of participants and local weather conditions.
On board MS Midnatsol, smoking is only permitted in designated areas on outside decks. Do not smoke in your cabin. To show respect for the environment, please use the provided ashtrays when smoking. Throwing cigarette butts overboard is strictly prohibited. A cleaning charge of 1 500 NOK will be applied for smoking in your non-smoking cabin, to cover the cost of cleaning linen and curtains to return it to a non-smoking standard.
As a suite guest on MS Midnatsol, we offer you an exclusive suite check-in area at deck 5 with a chilled glass of champagne to begin your voyage. Special amenities come with our magnificent suites including a welcome on board gift, complimentary beverages for lunch and dinner including sodas, soft drinks, beer and a selection of wines by the glass. We also offer a selection of hot foods made to order and served by your table for breakfast.
In the suite you will find a kettle for your convenience with coffee, teas, sweeteners and cream, and the mini bar has a complimentary selection upon your arrival. Replenishment of the mini bar is chargeable.
The tap water in your cabin is potable, but we recommend buying bottled water or our self-produced potable water by the carafe in the restaurant for quality and freshness. Complimentary sparkling and still water are served for all meals.
We kindly remind you to be careful walking on board the ship while at sea, especially out on deck, where you should mind the signs warning of wet and slippery decks. Be aware that the doors toward the outer decks on 9 are potentially dangerous in windy conditions. Please adhere to the signs and announcements when it is not advised to go outside. While walking inside, hold on to railings but not to door frames to avoid injury.
Upon arrival on board, there will be a mandatory passenger safety drill before departure. There will also be a welcome meeting where security information as well as practical information about the cruise will be given, and an opportunity to meet some of the crew and be introduced to the key personnel on board.