New fast ferry delivered to South Korea's KT Marine

Hamel KT Marine
Hamel

South Korean operator KT Marine has taken delivery of a new fast catamaran ferry. Named Hamel, the 42-metre vessel was ordered earlier this year, and the delivery within a few months is partly due to the builder's practice of serial construction of vessels for stock.

Hamel will transport up to 423 passengers at speeds of up to 40 knots. The ferry will operate a route between Yeosu Harbour and Geomundo Island.

The ferry is named in honour of Hendrik Hamel, a Dutch sailor with the Vereenigde Oost-indische Compagnie (VOC) or Dutch East India Company. Hamel sailed with the company to Indonesia in 1650. In 1653, while sailing to Japan, Hamel and his crew were shipwrecked on Jeju Island, Korea.

Refused permission to leave the country due to is isolationist policy at the time, Hamel remained for thirteen years in Korea before escaping in 1666 to the Dutch trading mission on Dejima Island, Japan. Here, he wrote Hendrik Hamel’s Journal of a Description of Kingdom of Korea, 1653-1666. Published in 1688 in the Netherlands, the journal was the earliest first-hand account of a westerner in Korea.

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