Ship passengers stranded on an African island

Eight passengers from a Norwegian Cruise Line cruise ship were stranded on an island off the west coast of Africa. The crew was too late to return and the ship left without her. The stranded passengers managed to get off the island on their own, but they spent almost a week trying to catch their ship.

Norwegian Cruise Line's Norwegian Dawn cruise ship departed on Thursday after a stopover in the island nation of Sao Tome and Principe, located off the west coast of Africa. However, eight of its passengers failed to return in time for the final boarding call, so the ship departed without them, CNN reported.

Left on an African island

A Norwegian Cruise Line cruise shipDennis McDonald /

Members of this group started reporting their plight on social media. The group escaped the island in another ship and reached the African continent. For nearly a week, they tried unsuccessfully to capture one of the next ports where their own ship was scheduled to dock.

According to their reports, they have already traveled to at least six countries. On Sunday, they reached The Gambia, where Norwegian Dawn was supposed to stop, but was unable to do so due to rough sea conditions. On Tuesday, the passengers are set to make another attempt to return to the Norwegian cruise ship – this time in Senegal.

In an interview with US television station WPDE, members of the group left behind by Norwegian Dawn said additional accommodation and other costs required by the situation had already reached thousands of dollars. They also complained about the lack of access to medicine while staying on the Norwegian cruise ship. The group included, among others: a pregnant woman and several elderly people.

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“The situation is very unfortunate”

A statement from the Norwegian carrier, cited by CNN, indicated that the company was aware of the absence of eight passengers. “The situation is very unfortunate. However, it is the guests' responsibility to check out and return to the ship at the specified time (time),” it said.

The passports of the delayed passengers were reportedly handed over to staff stationed at the island's port so they could collect them. The agency is in constant contact with local authorities and stranded passengers, it added.

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Main photo source: Dennis McDonald /

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