One of our subscribers sent us a photo recently that they had snapped in Eastbourne Harbour, East Sussex, of a very interesting looking ship, identified as Hjalmar Bjørge. We’d not heard of this ship nor do you often see such vessels in Eastbourne, as the harbour is mainly used by small pleasure craft, private yachts and fishing vessels. So, we jumped into researching this cool and mysterious looking small-ship, knowing it must have a story to tell.
The 23m ice-class ship was built in 1963 in Norway and had an interesting working life as both a rescue ship and fishing fleet support vessel. She then had a period under private ownership, no doubt going on various adventures before being acquired in 2002 by a company called Northern Light cruising Co. And as if by magic, that’s where No Fly comes in, as she is now operating a season of No Fly Cruises around the Scottish Isles.
Hjalmar Bjørge has undergone extensive refurbishment and (in the words of her owner) offers ‘outstanding luxury and comfort’ and is suited to adventurous sea voyages for up to 12 passengers. She has already carried passengers as far as the northern coast of Iceland. Hjalmar Bjorge is marketed as ‘an ideal platform from which both individuals and groups can explore beautiful North West Scotland or further afield’ and she certainly caught our attention when we saw the photo.
No fly cruising is not just about the larger, well-known cruise lines, there are many small and unique ships out there offering programmes that really do look exciting. These ships can take you to truly remote no fly locations, with the ability to drop anchor in the most inaccessible and picturesque destinations.
This ship offers a very authentic no fly cruise experience, with very few guests (no more than 12 in total) and some fabulous itineraries. We love finding new ships and companies to add to our guide and hope to experience this ship first-hand one day. And as to what she is doing in Eastbourne, we are not sure, possibly undergoing some lay-up TLC.
Got a No Fly Cruise question or spotted something interesting? Please get in touch.