Lindblad expands core Galápagos expeditions with two new vessels 

Lindblad expands core Galápagos expeditions with two new vessels 
Edited by Travel Weekly


    Lindblad Expeditions has added two purpose-built Galápagos expedition vessels to join the Lindblad Expeditions-National Geographic fleet.

    “We recognise and appreciate the immense privilege our Company has to operate and grow our expedition cruise offerings in the Galápagos Islands,” founder and CEO of Lindblad Expeditions, Sven-Olof Lindblad, said.

    “By sourcing well-appointed vessels and onboarding the most experienced crew and staff who meet our exacting standards of responsible exploration, we’re able to transport guests from around the world to the iconic archipelago and help them understand the importance of protecting and preserving its wonders and wildlife, as a consequence of their personal experience.    

    “When my father, Lars-Eric Lindblad, led the first international citizen expedition to the Galápagos nearly 60 years ago, I don’t think he ever could have dreamed it would serve as the foundation for ecotourism in the archipelago and would be the catalyst for meaningful, positively impactful connections.

    “We look forward to not only bringing more Lindblad Expeditions-National Geographic guests to the islands with the growth of our fleet, but also to having a greater positive social impact supporting conservation, education and the creation of livelihoods.” 

    The former Celebrity Xploration is a 16-guest, eight-cabin catamaran.

    Bookings open later this month

    Bookings will open for sale later this month with the new names of the two ships also to be revealed. The first of the two new ships (formerly Celebrity Xpedition) is a 48-guest configuration and features two unique dining venues and 24 outward-facing cabins, including 13 balcony suites.

    Even more intimate, the second vessel (formerly Celebrity Xploration) is a 16-guest, eight-cabin catamaran perfect for family vacations, affinity groups, and private charters. Following the closing of the transaction in January 2025, the ships will undergo multi-million-dollar refurbishments.

    Once complete, the ships will embody the spirit of adventure and extreme comfort, both synonymous with Lindblad Expeditions-National Geographic, and will celebrate the company’s deep connection to the islands, Ecuador, and its people. 

    “For decades, Lindblad Expeditions has set the standards for sustainable tourism in Galápagos and been an extraordinary friend and supporter to the Charles Darwin Foundation and the greater conservation community in the islands,” said Rakan Zahawi, executive director of the Charles Darwin Foundation.

    “Together with community leaders, farmers, scientists and researchers, as well as Ecuadorians from Galápagos and the continent, Lindblad Expeditions has helped to uplift local communities and safeguard the archipelago’s precious species and habitats. We are grateful for their continued commitment to protecting, promoting, and preserving our home, while showcasing its beauty to responsible travelers.” 

    Lindblad Expeditions led the first-ever non-scientific international civilian expedition to the Galápagos in 1967. For many years, it has operated two ships in the region, the state-of-the-art 96-guest National Geographic Endeavour II and the 48-guest former mega-yacht turned expedition vessel National Geographic Islander II. The addition of the new 48-guest and 16-guest ships will double its Galápagos fleet.

    Feature image: The former Celebrity Xpedition is a 48-guest configuration with two dining venues and 24 outward-facing cabins, including 13 balcony suites.

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