NOME, ALASKA — High-end tourism came to one of the last wildernesses on the planet on Tuesday, when a huge luxury cruise ship entered Arctic waters.
The Crystal Serenity is carrying 1,000 passengers, who have each paid at least $22,000 each for the privilege.
The ship docked in Nome, Alaska on Monday, according to Capital Berg. Environmentalists say the cruise is taking advantage of climate change to sail in waters where ice has melted.
The Crystal Serenity is accompanied by an ice-breaking boat and two helicopters but is expected to be able to navigate the Northwest Passage by itself.
The green lobby says a successful voyage for the Crystal Serenity could open the floodgates to more cruise ships and therefore make climate change in the Arctic even worse.
Residents of small settlements along the ship’s route aren’t complaining however. They’re ready to cash-in on the presence of free-spending tourists loaded with pockets full of dough.
The mayor of Nome reported a brisk trade in products made of walrus ivory and sealskin before the Crystal Serenity left port on Tuesday, according to Capital Berg.
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