Designed and purpose built in Germany in 2003 specifically for expedition travel, National Geographic Orion was created from the outset to explore the far corners of the Earth in complete self-sufficiency. Engineered for maximum comfort and safety, Orion is equipped with the latest technology including large retractable stabilizers, sonar, radar, and an ice-strengthened hull. A shallow draft plus bow and stern thrusters provide the convenience of being able to maneuver close to shore. 14 Zodiacs ensure quick disembarkation and offer the ideal transport for up-close exploration. Best of all, Orion is equipped with a glass-bottom Zodiac that enables remarkably clear, gratifying observations of the undersea for those who prefer to stay dry.