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More expedition ships finding Tristan da Cunha

More expedition ships are adding the remote destination to itineraries
Tristan da Cunha, which claims to be the ‘remotest inhabited island in the world’, and probably one of the hardest destinations to get to is keen to grow its cruise tourism.

Situated in the South Atlantic Ocean, approximately 1,500 miles from Cape Town and with a population of 267 people it takes seven days by ship to get there  from the South African port.

Silversea's Silver Explorer visited in March 2016 and is set to return again next  April. Most ships call between December to April whilst 12-berth cargo vessels Edinburgh or Baltic Trader sail to the island nine times a year and SA Agulhas – a South African research ship  once a year, providing an opportunity for a small number of passengers to stay for three weeks.

Visiting cruise ships are unable to berth in the harbour but access by tender is now available since the harbour was recently dredged.

Chris Carnegy, the Islands' UK representative told Seatrade Cruise News, 'there's only one remotest community on earth, and it's Tristan da Cunha. The specialness of getting there, and the legendary friendliness of Tristanians, make the island a must-visit destination for ambitious travellers.

'On a visit to Tristan, passengers enjoy the opportunity to see and learn how self-sufficient the islanders are at planting and harvesting their own potatoes, tending livestock to ensure sufficient amounts of beef, lamb and fresh milk, and catch fresh fish from the sea, Carnegy explains.

All wages are paid in cash by the sole bank and there are no restaurants or hotels, he added.  There is a pub, one supermarket, one school with under 30 students and one hospital.

Other must-dos highlighted by Carnegey, 'are a walking tour of the volcano that erupted in 1961 and learn how the islanders were evacuated, tour of the Lobster factory to hear how we catch, process and export our delicious lobster, mountain walks to Queen Mary’s Peak (highest point 6,760ft/2,060mtr) or base walk (2,000ft/600mtr high), playing a game of golf on our nine hole course shared with some of Tristan’s livestock, the Thatched House Museum, which gives an opportunity to see what homes were like before the volcanic eruption and novelty tractor ride around the settlement of Edinburgh giving great vantage points with wonderful breath-taking scenery.'

On visits to the Outer islands popular spottings are Rockhopper Penguin, Yellow Nosed Albatross and the endemic Flightless Rail on Inaccessible Island, he commented.

More expedition ships are adding the remote destination to itineraries, informs Sue Blanchard Williams, who is assisting Tristan in gaining more cruise business,  with Ponant's Le Lyrial arriving next year. In 2018, Seabourn Quest is scheduled for a call in January and Seven Seas Voyager will pay a maiden visit, taking four days to sail from Namibia to get to the island.