NEW LONDON, CT (WFSB) – First impressions are always the lasting ones, and that’s what passengers on board an expeditionary cruise shipped learned as they visited Connecticut Monday.
The M/S Hebridean Sky, a 300-foot expeditionary cruise ship that can tour the arctic waters, made port Monday morning in New London, under sunny skies.
It was the first passenger ship to visit the Whaling City since 2014.
Mayor Michael Passero presented a plaque to the captain and said, “thank you for the hospitality and the perfect weather.”
The small ship is registered in Nassau. It’s mostly British passengers who are on a 14-day cruise from New York to Halifax, Nova Scotia.
“You have the actual fees that they have to pay to dock here, and most importantly you have 100 people going into Southeastern Connecticut today to see our region spend money and they’ll want to come back,” said Scott Bates, chair of the Connecticut Port Authority.
On Monday, Channel 3 caught up with them during an excursion to Essex Steam Train and Riverboat cruise.
“This is a beautiful area. I was very impressed with it when we came into New London. I wasn’t all that impressed with New York,” said David Boyce, a passenger on the cruise ship.
The modern ocean-going vessel was recently given a multi-million-dollar upgrade.
The ship is pretty unique. There are only 56 cabins, not like one of the big cruise liners where you have 5,000 people on board. This boat only holds 100 passengers and the 72 crew members on board make them feel at home.
“These are the type of ships we’re really looking for there are a lot of them traveling around the coast. New London is a perfect harbor,” Passero said.
The harbor has the oldest customs port in the country, and security is tight and took just three weeks to make this visit happen.
The cruise ship is scheduled to set sail Monday at 11 p.m. to its next port of call Tuesday, which is Newport.