MV Al Arabia

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Name: MV Al Arabia
Owner: none - scrapped
Port of registry: Moroni, Comoros
Route: none-scrapped
Builder: Belliard Hoboken
Launched: 1975
Christened: 1975: Prinses Maria Esmeralda, 1995 + 1998 Wisteria, 1997+2000 Beni Ansar, 2007 Aquaba Express, 2007 Al Arabia
In service: 1975
Out of service: 2007
Fate: scrapped in India
General characteristics
Tonnage: 12,046 gross register tons (GRT)
  • 118.42 m (388.5 ft)
  • Before enlarging:118.42 m (388.5 ft)
  • 23.32 m (76.5 ft)
  • Before enlarging:19.9 m (65.3 ft)
  • 5.05 m (16.6 ft)
  • Before enlarging:4.52 m (14.8 ft)
Installed power: 18.200
Propulsion: 2 * Pielstick 18PC2V400[1][2]
Speed: 21 kn (38.9 km/h)
Capacity: 1475/1250 passengers

The MV Al Arabia was a roro-ferry who has seen service on several routes. It was built for the Belgium state-owner operator Regie voor Maritiem Transport België as the Prinses Maria Esmeralda. She sailed on the Oostend-Dover route.

Under the name Wisteria she also sailed on the route Oostend-Ramsgate and on the Almeria to Nador line. This 1975 built ship is a sistership of the MV Eurovoyager and MV Larkspur. You shouldn't mix-up this Wisteria with the current, 1978 built, MV Wisteria that sails on the Almeria-Nador route for FerriMaroc or Acciona Trasmediterránea


In 1975 the Belliard Shipyard built the ship under dock-number 877. The ship was ordered by the state-owned operator Regie voor Maritiem Transport België. She was christened Prinses Maria Esmeralda. She sailed on the Dover-Oostend route.

In 1995 the ship was sold to Transeuropa Ferries en christened MV Wisteria and started sailing on Oostend-Ramsgate

During some summers the ship was chartered to ferry-operators between Spain and Morocco and Tunisia. Since 2000 it moved permanently to run on the Almeria to Nador route until it was sold for scrap in 2007 to India [2]


Sistership Eurovoyager arriving in Almeria (2010)

The Prinses Maria Esmeralda was one of three sisterships ordered by RMT. In 1978 the Prins Albert came into service and is now sailing as the MV Eurovoyager for Comarit/Comanav from Almeria to Al Hoceima.[3](see picture left)
The other sister ship was the Princesse Marie Christine, currently the MV Primrose also sailing for Comarit/Comanav on routes between Almeria and Morocco.[4]

References and footnotes[edit]

  1. ^ Data also based on details sistership Primrose op Website Transeuropa Ferries, retrieved 7 August 2010
  2. ^ a b The Ferry Site on MV Al Arabia, visited 8 August 2010
  3. ^ The Ferry site on the MV Eurovoyager, checked 8 August 2010
  4. ^ The Ferry site on MV Primrose, Visited 21 August 2010