Underway at last: The new National Geographic Quest

National Geographic Quest is on an eight-day expedition in Southeast Alaska National Geographic Quest is on an eight-day expedition in Southeast Alaska (Photo: Ian Strachan/Lindblad Expeditions)

The first newbuild in Lindblad Expeditions' history set off on its inaugural voyage Saturday when National Geographic Quest departed from Juneau.

The 100-passenger, US-built coastal ship is on an eight-day expedition exploring Southeast Alaska.

National Geographic Quest's delivery was delayed after the ship sustained damage during its launch down the slip on June 14. The July 8 and July 15 cruises were canceled.

After that setback was overcome Sven Lindblad, ceo and president of Lindblad Expeditions, commended the team: 'You all must feel a deep sense of pride and accomplishment. You have all worked tirelessly to make this possible, and are a part of history having played an important role in the building and launch of the most sophisticated and beautiful ship built in the US in decades.'

National Geographic Quest will operate the 'Exploring Alaska’s Coastal Wilderness' itinerary through Aug. 26, and will finish the Alaska season with a 'Treasures of the Inside Passage: Alaska and British Columbia' cruise on Sept. 2.

The ship will then remain in the Pacific Northwest for a series of new voyages between Seattle and Vancouver, with stops at the San Juan Islands, Victoria, Alert Bay and more far-reaching visits to British Columbia’s channels and fjords.

Beginning in December, National Geographic Quest will reposition for expeditions in Costa Rica and Panama before starting a series of new voyages in Belize and Guatemala in February.

Posted 30 July 2017

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Anne Kalosh

Editor, Seatrade Cruise News & Senior Associate Editor Seatrade Cruise Review