Dear Anna, We have been on board Noah’s Ark 1 for a week now and are having a great time. Modern technology is so wonderful – the boat’s biome takes on whichever climate and habitat we pass through around the world, and the wildlife comes on board, so we have seen close-up views of monkeys, colourful birds and turtles without even leaving the boat.
Can’t wait until we get to Antarctica and everything becomes crystallised in ice and snow. We might even get Emperor penguins on board if we are lucky! On Monday, we climbed up Mount Noah, a mountain as high as Snowdon on the boat. It was great – we passed another couple on the way down, but other than that it was all ours. The views from the top were amazing – no low cloud here. It is a bit of a moonscape, like Snowdonia, and it’s a reasonably challenging climb.
It changes depending on the climate we’re passing through at the time, so there are plenty of reasons to go back up and see how it’s changed. Yesterday, we enjoyed the mountain biking course on the edge of Mount Noah. It’s purpose-built with lots of singletrack and challenging rocks to drop off. It’s very steep in places, and it feels like you’re going to crash into the sea, as that’s all you can see below you as you descend. It’s a bit like that 1 in 3 hill that we careered down in Anglesey. I managed not to twist my ankle this time though! You’d love the glass dungeon. Not only does it stabilise the boat to make it the smoothest journey ever (nobody has been seasick), but it gives you the best views of the open ocean. It’s a bit like swimming in a cage with sharks, except there’s no cage and it’s all glass. We’ve seen tiger sharks, jellyfish, clownfish, electric eels, weird plant-like floating animals and shoals and shoals of colourful little fish darting in all directions. It’s great to know that Noah’s Ark isn’t damaging the marine environment, or the rest of the planet.
The ship is propelled by the power of the waves and the electricity on board comes from a wind turbine on Mount Noah and loads of solar panels. All of the waste is collected and will be recycled. The sewage is composted in reeds, rather than released into the sea. So we don’t feel guilty for our carbon footprint. Tomorrow, we are going to look around the archaeological area. Ancient buildings have been recreated brick by brick, stone by stone or mud by mud, so we can learn about some of the history of the places we’re going to. As you know, it’s my birthday next week, so it would be great if you and Simon, mum and dad and Ellie and Paul could pop over on the teleporter, so we can celebrate together. There’s a brilliant vegetarian restaurant with a steak restaurant next to it, so we and the men will be OK. All of the food is locally sourced and sustainable (we’ll be near Mexico next week, so there might be a bit of a kick to it – better not tell mum and dad). Look forward to seeing you next week and showing you all of the delights of Noah’s Ark. It even has its own whisky distillery, so Simon will be OK. Kate