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Uniworld Countess goes to Italy

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Home >> Uniworld Countess goes to Italy

As mentioned in the last post, a lot of new rivers are explored at the moment. While most companies focus on the Rhone, Saone and Douro, Uniworld is the first that cruises the Po river in Italy. The Po river provides some problems with sediments and floodings, but on the other hand Italy is full of another beautiful church(es) culture and history.

When i read the information on Uniworlds website I was a bit confused how they are able to transport the River Countess across the alps. The last two years it cruised the Rhine Main Danube rivers from Amsterdam to the Black Sea. While there are a lot of canals connecting the rivers of France with each other and the Rhine and Moselle (see List of Canals in France), they are too small for cruise ships. Usually they use the Freycinet size of 38.5m x 5m for locks. That would be the European Inland Waterway Boat Classifications Class I, while most cruise ships are falling in the category V or VI.

With the Countess going to Italy the problem is much bigger than tiny locks. How did the ships go around the alps? No canals and the ship can't go along the coastline of Europe. Uniworld enlightend me with a picture set on facebook were you can see how they transported the Baroness to France. Most likely they did the same with the River Countess.

Baroness Piggyback

You can see the full picture set on Uniworlds Facebook Page.

Now, how does it work? The Baroness took a piggyback ride on the MV Eide Transporter barge carrier. On this video of Eide Gruppen Norway you can see how the transporter submerges horizontally, loads its cargo and raises its platform again. That answers a lot of questions.