Posts tagged: ancona

Jadrolinija’s Ivan Zajc

Repost of a voyage report originally posted here in 2009 but subsequently lost.

In 2010 the Ivan Zajc was sold for service in Equatorial Guinea for service to the island of Malabo. She reportedly still survives (an AIS signal was last emitted in July 2015) but there is no definitive confirmation of her present location and condition.

The Ivan Zajc and the Vis at Vela Luka.

The Ivan Zajc and the Vis at Vela Luka.

A voyage report from July 2005 (Pictures from 2005 and 2007)

Having motored up the coast from Korcula on the little Liburnija, easily Jadrolinija’s most lovely ship, an overnight sailing from Split to Ancona on the Ivan Zajc awaited. Built for the Linee Marittime dell’Adriatico in 1970 as the Tiziano the Ivan Zajc has the distinction of having passed through three separate operators while all the time operating primarily from Italy to Split, in Croatia (formerly Yugoslavia). Originally operating from Pescara, she passed to Adriatica in 1980, with operations from both Ancona and Pescara as well as use elsewhere on the network on occasion.

A view from astern, showing the ship's distinctive silhouette.

A view from astern, showing the ship's distinctive silhouette.

Finally, in 1993 she was acquired by Jadrolinija, acquiring her present name and being deployed largely on the Ancona run, although certain domestic sailings have also been maintained (in recent years often a daytime return to Vela Luka on Korcula island in between overnights to Italy). In 2007 Jadrolinija introduced some Pescara-Split sailings, restoring the ship to her original route.
The starboard side outside deck upon arrival at Vela Luca in 2007. In the background is the Vis (ex-Sydfyn).

The starboard side outside deck upon arrival at Vela Luca in 2007. In the background is the Vis (ex-Sydfyn).


The ship’s interiors are certainly distinctively Italianate, and largely unchanged under Jadrolinija. She feels deceptively small and cramped and is perhaps best as an overnight ship, although at least on sunny day sailings passengers can spill out onto the open decks. The public rooms consist of a curious windowless bar area forward complete with Purser’s desk and, adjacent on the starboard side, a restaurant area. Other than that, this ship is a rabbit warren of narrow cabin alleyways, with a couple of reclining seat lounges off to port. Charming in its own way but, on a busy crossing and particularly upon boarding and arrival, full of bottlenecks with crowds of people trying to push past each other. Scattered around the ship are a series of large, framed Italian art prints.

The Tin Ujevic on her berth at Split, with the Ivan Zajc departing.

The Tin Ujevic on her berth at Split, with the Ivan Zajc departing.

The stern door.

The stern door.


The car deck

The car deck

The windowless bar, forward, looking aft on the starboard side.

The windowless bar, forward, looking aft on the starboard side.

Another view of the bar. The purser's office and a small shop are also located here.

Another view of the bar. The purser's office and a small shop are also located here.

The self service restaurant, aft of the bar on the starboard side. Right aft, an area is partitioned off for waiter-service.

The self service restaurant, aft of the bar on the starboard side. Right aft, an area is partitioned off for waiter-service.

Self-service servery area.

Self-service servery area.


The waiter service section

The waiter service section

The centreline corridor leading aft from the bar with the self-service to the right and recliner lounge to the left.

The centreline corridor leading aft from the bar with the self-service to the right and recliner lounge to the left.

Recliner lounge

Recliner lounge

The upper lobby, complete with four large Italian art prints.

The upper lobby, complete with four large Italian art prints.

Shoehorned onto the forecastle is a small swimming pool, empty on our night crossing and it was just aft of this, on the port-side promenade that we set up camp for the night on one of the lifejacket containers. Nabbing a decent place to sleep on the outside decks had been our first priority upon boarding: exploring the ship could wait for later although, as can be seen, there really isn’t much to explore. The Ivan Zajc pulled out of Split on time and after a long day we bedded down for the night and I soon nodded off to sleep.

The swimming pool

The swimming pool

Builder's plate

Builder's plate

I was awoken abruptly in the middle of the night to find a female face leering above screeching in an Australian accent. “You’ve stolen my shoes! My shoes! Where are my shoes?! I’m going to have to walk around Europe with no shoes!”. My first reaction was to zip my sleeping bag up over my head perhaps, in my half-comatose state, thinking that this was merely an unfortunate hallucinogenic reaction to the slightly tough and overcooked steak I’d had for lunch on the Liburnija. But, alas, no: this was all too real.
“I didn’t get this paid for you know. Not on Daddy’s credit card. DADDY’S CREDIT CARD! DADDY’S *****Y CREDIT CARD. You got it paid for by DADDY’S ****ING CREDIT CARD.”

This was altogether too bizarre a situation to comprehend in the middle of the night but in retrospect I should perhaps have advised her that if, by some good fortune, Daddy had left me in control of his credit card, I probably would have found better ways of spending money than travelling deck class on the Ivan Zajc, trying to sleep whilst lying on a hard plastic lifejacket container. Alas the opportunity was lost as our Aussie friend was soon led away by a concerned travelling companion and I resumed my slumber, slightly nonplussed.

We awoke the next day as the ship neared Ancona; the rival Split 1700 had sailed in convoy with us overnight and had arrived just before. With the early morning arrival we headed off to rouse ourselves with some coffee, cake and freshly-squeezed orange juice in a little café in the town, which has become something of a regular haunt after early morning Ancona arrivals. Suitably resuscitated we headed off towards the main railway station where a Eurostar Intercity train would speed us down the coast to Bari.

Looking forward on the Ivan Zajc.

Looking forward on the Ivan Zajc.

Right aft, the ship was built with a stern bridge. Today it is abandoned.

Right aft, the ship was built with a stern bridge. Today it is abandoned.

The Ivan Zajc at Split

The Ivan Zajc at Split

Mediterranean Massacre – Part Two

After the recent cull of Southern Europe’s elderly ferry fleet, which ships will be next? There remain plenty of veterans out there, and the list below is a bit of idle speculation. Quite a few vessels are now laid up mainly because they have recently finished seasonal service rather than anything more sinister. A couple, like the little Don Peppino in the Bay of Naples (ex-Malmø, 1964) and Jadrolinija’s Porozina (ex-Esefjord, 1971) have seen service this year after previous bouts of inactivity left them looking doomed, so nothing is certain. Particularly for the Croatian ships, domestic service under local, less strict, safety rules might be a solution once a vessel can no longer be used on international services – this may prove a valuable factor for Jadrolinija’s little Liburnija. Sadly however, it is likely that several of the ships listed below may be gone within the next twelve months.

The Ancona and Split 1700 at Split.

The Ancona and Split 1700 at Split.

Two ships which have been sold for scrap since the original instalment are the Ancona and the Split 1700. Between them they helped to make Blue Line the dominant operator from Split to Ancona, in the process seeing off the Italian state operator Adriatica whilst the Croatian equivalent, Jadrolinija, operating their Dubrovnik, are outclassed. However it was always clear that 2010 would be the end for the 1966-built pair – indeed, the Split 1700 had been laid up throughout the Summer since the company acquired better and larger tonnage. The only question was whether anyone would be able to preserve the Ancona but, perhaps not surprisingly, the answer was no and the pair have been sold to Indian breakers.

The Ancona.

The Ancona.

Boughaz and Banasa at Algeciras.

Boughaz and Banasa at Algeciras.

Starting in the West, on the routes to Morocco the situation is fairly critical in terms purely of age with a whole host of ships nearing or over 30 years in age – the Al Mansour (ex-Stena Nordica, Reine Astrid), Atlas (ex-Gelting Syd), Banasa (ex-Mette Mols), Berkane (ex-Napoleon), Biladi (ex-Liberté), Bni Nsar (ex-Ferry Akashi, Dame M), Boughaz (ex-Viking 5), Ibn Batouta (ex-St Christopher), Le Rif (ex-Galloway Princess), Mistral Express (ex-Esterel) and Wisteria (ex-Prinses Beatrix, Duc de Normandie). TransEuropa Ferries’ Eurovoyager is also presently in the area.

Quite what to expect here is difficult to say – other than the Eurovoyager most of the above named are in regular service. There have been a couple of casualties from the area in 2010 already in the Sara 1 and Euroferrys Atlantica but with a reportedly disappointing Summer perhaps there is scope for some further cutbacks. The most likely vessel perhaps, other than the Eurovoyager, might be the oldest – COMANAV’s Bni Nsar has created a notably negative public reputation but has, however, remained in service beyond 30 September.

The Habib.

The Habib.

Tunisia’s 1970s ship of state, the Habib, is a lovely 1970s veteran – sort of an Africanised, originally two-class-version of TT Lines’ Peter Pan and Nils Holgersson of 1974/75. With the new Hanibal due for delivery in 2012, if the Habib is compliant with the safety requirements of the so-called ‘Stockholm Agreement’ one would expect her to return for one final fling in 2011 – but crew members were adamant 2010 was her final season when we sailed on the ship in June.

Sardinia Regina and Moby Vincent at Bastia.

Sardinia Regina and Moby Vincent at Bastia.

Both Sardinia Ferries and Moby on their longer passenger routes have a collection of 1970s-built ships matched with vessels from the past decade – and not too much in between. Moby’s Drea, Otta, Vincent, Fantasy and Corse are all vital parts of the network and one cannot imagine them being replaced in the near future – the Fantasy continually punches above her weight on the Olbia-Civitavecchia route and is perhaps the weakest of the classic ferries. The Moby Vincent (ex-Stena Normandica, St Brendan) is the oldest but both Moby and their yellow-hulled rivals seem content to each employ one of these Rickmers-built ferries as their regular ships on the Livorno-Bastia route. If one or other was replaced with something new I can imagine the rival operator would respond pretty quickly – but who will blink first?

Both Moby and Corsica Ferries have been able to add capacity seemingly at will in recent years, and the latter’s elderly ladies seem equally secure – for now. The Sardinia Vera and sister Corsica Marina Seconda, the Sardinia Regina and sister Corsica Victoria plus the Corsica Serena Seconda all appear in the Summer 2011 timetables.

The Moby Baby at Portoferraio.

The Moby Baby at Portoferraio.

Moby’s five Babies on the Elban routes have an average age of 37 years and recently the company made statements about ordering six new ships to replace them, together with the Bastia on the Santa Teresa-Bonifacio run. Nothing firm has happened on that front yet – so these classics look set to continue for some time to come. The 1966-built Moby Baby (ex-Svea Drott, Earl Godwin) is the now surely the oldest ship operating for anything like a mainstream multi-route operator in the EU (save maybe for Balearia’s Arlequin Rojo) but the even smaller Moby Ale (ex-Mikkel Mols, 1969) would seem likely to be the first to go if Moby were to have a cull. For now that doesn’t seem likely as all five ships are hard-pressed on the busy Summer Saturdays.

The Primrose at Piombino.

The Primrose at Piombino.

Upstarts Blunavy made an entry onto the Piombino-Portoferraio route in 2010 and, after an apparently relatively successful season, claim they are looking for a different ship to the Primrose (ex-Princesse Marie Christine). Something with a better air conditioning system might be a good idea. The sweaty, beaten-up old Primrose has to be high on the list of likely ships to head straight for scrap from here.

The Don Peppino at Pozzuoli.

The Don Peppino at Pozzuoli.

One elderly ex-Moby ship which has thus far evaded the scrappers is the Don Peppino of Gestur. Originally the Malmø of 1964, she spent 24 years with Moby as the Citta di Piombino but was subsequently laid up for a period in Naples. Reactivated in 2008 she is a sweet little thing but can’t have too many years left now. There remain several other interesting ships laid up in Naples but the largest two – the Medmar overnight pair Donatella D’Abundo and Giulia D’Abundo – have now both gone for scrap.

The SNAV Sicilia at Palermo.

The SNAV Sicilia at Palermo.

The most disappointing departures from Italian domestic service after 30 September were SNAV’s ex-North Sea Ferries pair SNAV Campania and Sicilia (ex-Norland and Norstar). Originally rumoured to have been sold for scrap, they are now both at anchor off Jeddah awaiting use, presumably as pilgrim ships for the Hajj in November, after which their futures remain unclear.

The Iginia and Rosalia at Messina.

The Iginia and Rosalia at Messina.

After the Sibari (1970) went for scrap last year, question marks hung over the remaining two classic train ferries on BluVia’s Messina-Villa San Giovanni route, the Iginia (1969) and Rosalia (1973). I travelled with the Rosalia in early September and she has clearly had a little bit of cash spent on her recently (although still retaining the faded glory look of all the ships on this route). Meanwhile the Iginia was to be found having some attention in dry dock in Messina so on this basis they seem secure for now. However the Logudoro, half-sister to the route’s more modern pair, the Villa and Scilla, remains laid up in Naples – if BluVia ever get around to instating her in Sicilian traffic, the lovely Iginia could be doomed.

The Domiziana off Naples.

The Domiziana off Naples.

Just as the future of Tirrenia is unclear, so it is for their oldest ship, the Domiziana. A (relatively) unrebuilt member of the Strade Romana class she has been moved to the Southern Italian port of Crotone for disposal – scrap must be a real option although I would still bet on her being acquired by another operator looking for replacement tonnage.

To the East of Italy the number of elderly ships under threat grows exponentially, first but not least with Jadrolinija. The Croatian national operator has, since the disposal of the Ivan Zajc in 2009, been reduced to four ships capable of realistic use on the coastal and international services. This has meant the Zadar operating Zadar-Ancona, the Dubrovnik on Split-Ancona, the Marko Polo the coastal service, Rijaka-Split-Stari Grad-Korcula-Dubrovnik and on to Bari in Italy, with the little Liburnija operating Korcula-Dubrovnik-Bari.

The Marko Polo will be upgraded over the Winter to meet the new safety requirements but it seems inevitable that the Liburnija will henceforth be restricted to domestic use – if anything. She was Jadrolinija’s first car ferry of any real size and ever since her introduction in 1965 has been lovingly looked after. Now quite antiquated one can only wonder if she will return in 2011 and, if so, what route a ship with cabin accommodation would be suitable for if not the coastal/international lines.

The Liburnija at Korcula.

The Liburnija at Korcula.

The Vis leaving Vela Luca.

The Vis leaving Vela Luca.

Of the other Jadrolinija ships in service in 2010 the most interesting threatened vessel is the 1965-built Vis, originally the Sydfyn. She has been with Jadrolinija for 34 years now but the feeling amongst her crew was that this was her final year. Aliaga awaits.

Jadrolinija's reserve fleet - Cres 2008.

Jadrolinija's reserve fleet - Cres 2008.

Whereas a couple of Jadrolinija ships have headed for scrap the majority of the coastal fleet, once no longer wanted, appear to be sent to lay up in various parts of the country. For example the onetime Red Funnel pair Lovrjenac (ex-Norris Castle) and Nehaj (ex-Cowes Castle) have been mouldering in Cres and Mali Losinj respectively for several years now. The picture above shows Cres in August 2008 with the Nehaj, Porozina (ex-Esefjord) and Bozava visible and, beyond, the Ero, Ozalj and Zigljen. The Porozina has since seen further service but the future of the remainder looks bleak, with the Bozava reportedly already gone.

The Postira arriving at Dubrovnik, with the Thomson Spirit beyond.

The Postira arriving at Dubrovnik, with the Thomson Spirit beyond.

If the fate of many of Jadrolinija’s old car ferries is uncertain, what then of the four remaining classic passenger ships? The Postira, Premuda, Ozalj and Tijat all still had niche roles in various parts of the country in 2010 but there are grumblings in some areas about the service offered. Many of these ship’s sisters and contemporaries have found their way into static use so one would expect the same might apply when the service careers of these veterans finally come to an end.

The Sveti Stefan and Sveti Stefan II at Bar.

The Sveti Stefan and Sveti Stefan II at Bar.

The Montenegro Lines fleet is in varying states of disrepair. To all intents and purposes they are the only passenger sea line into the country so doubtless will carry on – but it would be nice if they could do something about the state of their ships, the Sveti Stefan II in particular. After seemingly disappearing for all of October, the latter ship returns to service at the start of November and is timetabled through to the end of the year. But what about her little red-hulled counterpart?

The Azzurra at Bari.

The Azzurra at Bari.

One doesn’t know what the Azzurra of Azzurra Line is up to at the best of times so perhaps the most recent AIS signal from the 1964-built ex-Grenaa shouldn’t be a surprise – she is not laid up near her normal Bari-based Adriatic home but is instead at Tasucu in Turkey, having previously paid a call into in Northern Cyprus. Has she entered service on the Tasucu-Gazimagusa route?!

The Arberia at Bari.

The Arberia at Bari.

With her fleetmates all gone for scrap, the Arberia (ex-Bore Star, Orient Express, Wasa Queen) of Halkydon Shipping, for now, ploughs on alone between Bari and Durres in Albania. If Halkydon do complete their withdrawal from the passenger shipping business, this ferry will have to find new owners – going for scrap seems unlikely but in the current climate anything is possible. Perhaps Mr Munk of Sunlink Ferries will finally get his ship?

The Santa Maria I and Rigel at Bari.

The Santa Maria I and Rigel at Bari.

G Lines’ Santa Maria I (ex-Sansovino) seems to have found little success since first being tried on the competitive Bari-Durres service in 2008. Beset by machinery problems in her inital seasons, she has now retired once again to Drapetsona – will she ever see proper service again?

Alongside her in the picture above is Ventouris Ferries’ Rigel (ex-Bore I). This ship and her three quite elderly Adriatic fleetmates (average age – 35) seem set to continue to operate – the Polaris is presently having a not insignificant refit with her place, for now, being taken by Agoudimos’ Ionian King.

The Veronica Line and Red Star I together at Brindisi.

The Veronica Line and Red Star I together at Brindisi.

Brindisi and the Southern Albanian port of Vlore have been the last operational ports of call for a number of notable ferries, from Thoresen’s Viking I, through SNCF’s Transcontainer I to Sessan’s 1965-built Prinsessan Desirée. The route has in recent years been home to three further veterans, the Viking I’s sister, the Viking III of 1965 (now Red Star I), her ex-Townsend Thoresen fleetmate Free Enterprise V (1970, now Veronica Line) and Agoudimos’s sprightly youngster the Ionian Spirit (ex-Viking 3, Roslagen (1972)).

The Veronica Line has again gone into hibernation for the Winter but the Red Star I and Ionian Spirit continue to sail. Whilst this route has a history of sudden disappearances the latter two seem quite secure for now. The Veronica Line may be a casualty of the Stockholm Agreement but there is every chance we won’t know about it until she fails to reappear for 2011.

The Penelope at Igoumenitsa.

The Penelope at Igoumenitsa.

Now laid up in Igoumenitsa the Penelope (ex-European Gateway) appears simply to be bedding down for the Winter rather than anything else and there seems every likelihood this unusual ship will return for 2011.

The Theofilos in white NEL livery at Piraeus, 2007.

The Theofilos in white NEL livery at Piraeus, 2007.

One of the most popular Greek ferries is the evergreen Theofilos of NEL Lines, which has sailed through the September SOLAS deadline and continues on an interesting Northern Aegean itinerary. The future is, however, cloudy for the former Nils Holgersson (1975) and one can only hope she will live to see another Greek Summer.

The Ierapetra L approaching Piraeus.

The Ierapetra L approaching Piraeus.

ANEK Lines have a series of ex-Japanese overnight ferries which are more than 30 years old deployed in domestic service: the Ierapetra L, Kriti I, Kriti II, Lissos, Lato and Prevelis. Although the Lissos is engaged in heavy competition with NEL on the route up to Chios and Mytilene, far from ANEK’s usual base, the remainder are in use on core or subsidised services and there is no imminent prospect of replacement. For now the elderly ANEKs seem safe.

The Rodanthi and Romilda laid up in Piraeus (with the Lissos visible beyond)

The Rodanthi and Romilda laid up in Piraeus (with the Lissos visible beyond)

Not such a happy future awaits the laid-up fleets of GA Ferries and SAOS. GA’s abandoned ships still dominate the Great Harbour in Piraeus whilst SAOS’s, including ex-British pair the Samothraki (Viking Voyager) and Panagia Soumela (Lady of Mann), are concentrated in Alexandropoulis in an increasingly decrepit state. It seems likely that the majority of these will head straight for scrap once the financial wrangling is finally concluded.

The Samothraki leaving Chios in 2007.

The Samothraki leaving Chios in 2007.

The Duchess M at Bari in August 2008.

The Duchess M at Bari in August 2008.

There are also dozens of ships laid up in the shipyards around Piraeus – many of which will never see service again. One such is the Duchess M of Marlines, originally the Wanaka and later Brittany Ferries’ Breizh-Izel. The final season of the final ship of the once glorious Marlines was 2008 and she has been laid up in Elefsis ever since. A one-way journey to the scrapyard is the only realistic result for this ship and so many of the others, including the Okeanis (ex-Free Enterprise) and the Alkyon (ex-Gotlandia).

The Express Santorini (ex-Chartres) and the Scotia Prince (ex-Stena Olympica, top picture) have also arrived in the area recently – they are both now at Drapetsona. The former ship is scheduled to carry out relief sailings through the Winter and a further Summer on charter in the Azores apparently awaits in 2011. For the Scotia Prince the future has to be less certain – she had a heavy refit before the 2010 season which she spent on charter to Marmara Lines for service between Italy and Turkey. It would be great news if this was repeated, but will Marmara Lines be back for 2011?

The Superferry II off Andros.

The Superferry II off Andros.

Although Blue Star Ferries have spent the money to repair her following her coming together with a pier in Tinos, the Superferry II is under threat from the new ships, Blue Star Delos and Blue Star Patmos, currently being built in Korea. The subsequent reshuffle of ships upon their delivery in will almost certainly see the end of the former Prince Laurent.

The Agios Georgios at Sifnos.

The Agios Georgios at Sifnos.

Lastly, are Ventouris Sea Lines’ Agios Georgios (ex-Hengist) and Agoudimos Lines’ Penelope A (ex-Horsa) under threat? Not just yet it seems and both have a Winter of Greek domestic sailing ahead of them.

Maintaining Ancona

A whole day in port – time for the crew to take a breather and relax in advance of another packed sailing in the evening?

Not so for the crew of the Ancona. Even with her imminent retirement, there were lots of routine maintenance tasks to perform during a stopover in the ship’s namesake port in mid-July. I suspect maybe some of the officers were taking it easy, but plenty of the crew were out in the mid-day sun – washing, painting, brushing or testing lifeboats. Here are some pictures of them hard at work – many taken, I must confess, from the comfort of a table in the shade of the canopy at the old Stazione Marittima‘s restaurant.

Lifeboat drill in the morning.

Lifeboat drill in the morning.

No. 2 in the water, no 4 coming down. In the background is a fellow former North Sea ship: once of Rederi Ab Svea/Svenska Lloyd's big rivals, the ex-Tor Dania is now AGEMAR's Filippos.

No. 2 in the water, no 4 coming down. In the background is a fellow former North Sea ship: once of Rederi Ab Svea/Svenska Lloyd's big rivals, the ex-Tor Dania is now AGEMAR's Filippos.

Splashdown...

Splashdown...

A rusty smear just within stretching distance.

A rusty smear just within stretching distance.

Good as new. Well, sort of.

Good as new. Well, sort of.

Down on Promenade Deck, a colleague is wrapped up against the Summer chill.

Down on Promenade Deck, a colleague is wrapped up against the Summer chill.

The Ancona and the Hellenic Spirit shine together in the afternoon sun.

The Ancona and the Hellenic Spirit shining together in the afternoon sun.

Picture of the week: Ancona (ex-Knossos, Saga, Hispania, Svea)

The Ancona at Ancona, August 2009. Click for larger image.

The Ancona at Ancona, August 2009. Click for larger image.


Previous image

Previous image

For more on the Ancona, click here.

Picture of the week: Superfast VI

Superfast VI off Ancona. Click for larger image.

Superfast VI off Ancona. Click for larger image.


Last week's picture

Last week's picture

Picture of the week – 4 March 2009

The Olympic Champion arriving at Ancona, dwarfing a pair of former Polferries fleetmates in the Split 1700 (ex-Wilanow, Kronprins Carl Gustav) and the Sveti Stefan II (ex-Nieborow, Prinz Hamlet). Click for larger image.

The Olympic Champion arriving at Ancona, dwarfing a pair of former Polferries fleetmates in the Split 1700 (ex-Wilanow, Kronprins Carl Gustav) and the Sveti Stefan II (ex-Nieborow, Prinz Hamlet). Click for larger image.


Last week's picture

Last week's picture

The Ancona (ex-Knossos, Saga, Hispania, Svea)

The Ancona at Ancona

The Ancona at Ancona


From Ancona to Split with the Ancona of Blue Lines.

The Ancona off Ancona in 2004, before the masts were regrettably painted blue.

The Ancona off Ancona in 2004, before the masts were regrettably painted blue.

Blue Lines’ Ancona is the former Knossos of Minoan Lines, and before that the Saga, Hispania and originally the Svea of the Rederi AB Svea and latterly Swedish Lloyd. Today she plies the route between Ancona and Split year-round, accompanied in peak season by her fleetmate, the Split 1700. Presented below are a series of pictures of and on board the ship from the Summers of 2007 and 2008.

See also this deckplan photograph of the ship as the Ancona, and here in her original guise as the Svea.

Walking down from the main railway station, the ferry port veers into view with the Ancona sheltering behind the passenger terminal.

Walking down from the main railway station, Ancona ferry port veers into view with the Ancona herself sheltering behind the passenger terminal.

The Ancona

The Ancona

The Ancona on her berth, adjacent to the passenger terminal

The Ancona on her berth, adjacent to the passenger terminal

Looking aft

Looking aft


Boarding is via the vehicle deck - the relatively low headroom caused problems in her early days on the North Sea but has not stopped a successful later career.

Boarding is via the vehicle deck - the relatively low headroom caused problems in her early days on the North Sea but has not stopped a successful later career.


Walking up from the vehicle deck, passengers are directed along one of the two side promenades, heading forward in the direction of the lobby.

Walking up from the vehicle deck, passengers are directed along one of the two side promenades, heading forward in the direction of the lobby.

The port side promenade.

The port side promenade.

The main lobby is centrally located on Deck 5 (originally A Deck) which is otherwise given over to cabins.

The main lobby is centrally located on Deck 5 (originally A Deck) which is otherwise given over to cabins.

Reception is at the forward end of the lobby.

Reception is at the forward end of the lobby.

The reception desk.

The reception desk.

The reception desk.

The reception desk.

Facing reception, on the aft side of the lobby is this small counter-service Duty Free shop.

Facing reception, on the aft side of the lobby is this small counter-service Duty Free shop.


The top of the port-side staircase leading up from the lobby to the cafeteria, showing the public facilities available....

The top of the port-side staircase leading up from the lobby to the cafeteria, showing the public facilities available....

The cafeteria entrance.

The cafeteria entrance.

The cafeteria, looking forward from the entrance.

The cafeteria, looking forward from the entrance.

The self-service servery area. (SEM picture)

The self-service servery area. (SEM picture)

Heading aft from the cafeteria, we enter the port side arcade.

Heading aft from the cafeteria, we enter the port side arcade.

From the other end, looking forward on the port side of the Saloon Deck.

From the other end, looking forward on the port side of the Saloon Deck.

One of the two aft port lounges has had casino and gaming equipment installed, but it still retains its original bar counter.

One of the two aft port lounges has had casino and gaming equipment installed, but it still retains its original bar counter.

Further aft, the aftmost port-side lounge is now rather sparsely furnished, with a big screen which is used to show football matches.

Further aft, the aftmost port-side lounge is now rather sparsely furnished, with a big screen which is used to show football matches.

The aft port lounge.

The aft port lounge.


Moving over to the starboard side, here is the aft lounge.

Moving over to the starboard side, here is the aft lounge.

Another view.

Another view.

The flow of the rooms is clear in this view of the bar, just forward of the aft lounge which can be seen in the background.

The flow of the rooms is clear in this view of the bar, just forward of the aft lounge which can be seen in the background.

The bar counter.

The bar counter.

A further view, looking across to port.

A further view, looking across to port.

The wall-mounted light fittings in the bar give a hint of space-age excitement, albeit more Dan Dare than Apollo 11.

The wall-mounted light fittings in the bar give a hint of space-age excitement, albeit more Dan Dare than Apollo 11.

Moving forward again, this vestibule separates the starboard gallery from the bar area.

Moving forward again, this vestibule separates the starboard gallery from the bar area.

Looking forward in the starboard gallery, with the entrance to the chapel visible on the left.

Looking forward in the starboard gallery, with the entrance to the chapel visible on the left.

The small chapel was originally designated as a 'Club Room', and when the ship was the Hispania sailing from Southampton to Spain it became a casino.

The small chapel was originally designated as a 'Club Room', and when the ship was the Hispania sailing from Southampton to Spain it became a casino.

The same room with an alternative seating layout.

The same room with an alternative seating layout.

A final view of the starboard arcade, looking aft.

A final view of the starboard arcade, looking aft.

At the forward end, these rather magnificent doors lead into the restaurant area. The location of the shop originally housed a pair of private function/dining rooms and on the Hispania became the 'Alice in Wonderland Children's Restaurant'.

At the forward end, these rather magnificent doors lead into the restaurant area. The location of the shop originally housed a pair of private function/dining rooms and on the Hispania became the 'Alice in Wonderland Children's Restaurant'.


The restaurant, forward on the starboard side of the ship.

The restaurant, forward on the starboard side of the ship.

The restaurant.

The restaurant.


The restaurant.

The restaurant.

The restaurant.

The restaurant.

The restaurant.

The restaurant.

The seating area forward to port can be opened up to either the restaurant to starboard or the cafeteria, just aft, as demand dictates.

The seating area forward to port can be opened up to either the restaurant to starboard or the cafeteria, just aft, as demand dictates.

The only other interior public space of note is this unremarkable reclining seat lounge up on Boat Deck.

The only other interior public space of note is this unremarkable reclining seat lounge up on Boat Deck.

Just forward of the reclining seats, these metal grilles in the lobby area betray the ship's two class history. As the Ancona she is one class, and this was also the case, technically, when built. In operation for Minoan Lines however a strict division was maintained. These grilles have now been removed.

Just forward of the reclining seats, these metal grilles in the lobby area betray the ship's two class history. As the Ancona she is one class, and this was also the case, technically, when built. In operation for Minoan Lines however a strict division was maintained. These grilles have now been removed.

The bulk of the overnight accommodation is provided in two and four berth inside and outside cabins on Decks 5, 4 and 2. Here is a 4-berth inside on Deck 4.

The bulk of the overnight accommodation is provided in two and four berth inside and outside cabins on Decks 5, 4 and 2. Here is a 4-berth inside on Deck 4.

The ship was designed for relatively short crossings, but each berth was provided with one drawer in this unit and another in the fittings adjacent to the bunks.

The ship was designed for relatively short crossings, but each berth was provided with one drawer in this unit and another in the fittings adjacent to the bunks.

A standard 4 berth outside cabin.

A standard 4 berth outside cabin.

One of the main cabin corridors.

One of the main cabin corridors.

Ancona Miscellany - throughout the ship there are reminders of her Swedish origins.

Ancona Miscellany - throughout the ship there are reminders of her Swedish origins.

Ancona Miscellany

Ancona Miscellany

Ancona Miscellany

Ancona Miscellany

Ancona Miscellany

Ancona Miscellany

Ancona Miscellany

Ancona Miscellany

Ancona Miscellany

Ancona Miscellany

Ancona Miscellany

Ancona Miscellany


The outside deck adjacent to the aft lounges on the Saloon Deck.

The outside deck adjacent to the aft lounges on the Saloon Deck.

Another view of the aft deck space on the Saloon Deck.

Another view of the aft deck space on the Saloon Deck.

A deck bar can be found on the deck above.

A deck bar can be found on the deck above.

The deck space pictured, just forward of the funnel, is now closed off to passengers.

The deck space around the funnel, pictured in 2004, is now closed off to passengers.

The covered area just forward of the funnel.

The covered area just forward of the funnel.

The Ancona's funnel.

The Ancona's funnel.

The funnel seen from the starboard Boat Deck.

The funnel seen from the starboard Boat Deck.

The forward superstructure, seen from the forecastle.

The forward superstructure, seen from the forecastle.

The ship's bell bears the inscription 'Saga, 1966';. The year of build is correct, but this ship was originally the Svea - the Saga was her sister, although the Svea did later bear the name so the provenance of the bell is uncertain.

The ship's bell bears the inscription 'Saga, 1966'. The year of build is correct, but this ship was originally the Svea - the Saga was her sister, although the Svea did later bear the name so the provenance of the bell is uncertain.

The Ancona.

The Ancona.

At Ancona in 2007, the Nordlink of Finnlines is seen from the Ancona in the process of being handed over to her owners by the Fincantieri shipyard. The Ancona's sister ship, the ex-Saga, wore these funnel colours during her three year stint as the Finnpartner in the mid-1970s.

At Ancona in 2007, the Nordlink of Finnlines is seen from the Ancona in the process of being handed over to her owners by the Fincantieri shipyard. The Ancona's sister ship, the ex-Saga, wore these funnel colours during her three year stint as the Finnpartner in the mid-1970s.

Another view of the port-side promenade.

Another view of the port-side promenade.

The starboard outside deck at night.

The starboard outside deck at night.

The funnel, floodlit.

The funnel, floodlit.

The following morning, taking on the pilot as we approach Split.

The following morning, taking on the pilot as we approach Split.

The ship's bridge.

The ship's bridge.

Bridge details.

Bridge details.

Bridge details.

Bridge details.

Looking aft from the bridge wing.

Looking aft from the bridge wing.

Approaching Split.

Approaching Split.

The Ancona.

The Ancona.

The Ancona at Split.

The Ancona at Split.

The Ancona at Split.

The Ancona at Split.

The Ancona, ex-Svea.

The Ancona, ex-Svea.

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