Bikini Atoll in the Pacific

9 December 2020 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, UNESCO World Heritage Reading Time:  18 minutes

Entrance sign to the island © Ron Van Oers/cc-by-sa-3.0-igo

Entrance sign to the island © Ron Van Oers/cc-by-sa-3.0-igo

Bikini Atoll, sometimes known as Eschscholtz Atoll between the 1800s and 1946, is a coral reef in the Marshall Islands consisting of 23 islands surrounding a 229.4-square-mile (594.1 km²) central lagoon. After the Second World War, the atoll’s inhabitants were relocated in 1946, after which the islands and lagoon were the site of 23 nuclear tests by the United States until 1958. The atoll is at the northern end of the Ralik Chain, approximately 530 miles (850 km) northwest of the capital Majuro. Three families were resettled on Bikini island in 1970, totaling about 100 residents. But scientists found dangerously high levels of strontium-90 in well water in May 1977, and the residents were carrying abnormally high concentrations of cesium-137 in their bodies. They were evacuated in 1980. The atoll is occasionally visited today by divers and a few scientists, and is occupied by a handful of caretakers.   read more…

The Nautica

1 June 2019 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: Cruise Ships, Yacht of the Month Reading Time:  5 minutes

in Tallinn © Pjotr Mahhonin/cc-by-sa-4.0

in Tallinn © Pjotr Mahhonin/cc-by-sa-4.0

MS Nautica is a cruise ship, built for Renaissance cruises as part of their R class. Nautica is now owned and operated by Oceania Cruises, where she is part of their Regatta Class. She was built in 2000 by the Chantiers de l’Atlantique shipyard in Saint-Nazaire, France for Renaissance Cruises as MS R Five. Between 2002 and 2004 she sailed for Pullmantur Cruises before entering service with her current owners in 2005.   read more…

The Insignia

1 November 2018 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: Cruise Ships, Yacht of the Month Reading Time:  6 minutes

in Split © Ivan T./cc-by-sa-3.0

in Split © Ivan T./cc-by-sa-3.0

MS Insignia is the lead ship of the R class of cruise ships built for Renaissance Cruises. She is now owned by Oceania Cruises as part of its Regatta Class of ships, but recently sailed for Hapag-Lloyd as the Columbus 2. She was built in 1998 by the Chantiers de l’Atlantique shipyard in St. Nazaire, France for Renaissance Cruises as MS R One. Renaissance Cruises had begun operations in 1989, with a series of eight small luxury cruise ships constructed during the course of the next three years. In the mid-90s the company placed an order for eight identical 30,277 GT vessels.   read more…

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