Watch Chats to Nigel

From his favourite destination to his biggest animal encounter highlight, Nigel Marven tells us all about his new brand new series, Cruise Ship Adventures.

Nigel Marven Interview

Hi Nigel, tell us about your new series.
In Cruise Ship Adventures I travel on cruise ships to explore ports of call around the world and discover the incredible wildlife that lives in and around these famous tourist destinations - often to the great surprise of other travellers.

What makes Cruise Ship Adventures different to your other series?
This series is different because I get to share my passion for nature with the other passengers, the ship's entertainers, and even the captains, taking them on adventures with me while the ship is in dock. For instance in Miami I take Captain Carl to learn how to wrestle an alligator, while in India Captain Jose joins me on the hunt for a cobra!

So what was your favourite destination to visit during filming?
It's hard to pick a favourite destination from all those we filmed in, but one of the highlights was visiting the Antarctic peninsula. It's a spectacularly beautiful landscape, and there's an astounding variety of wildlife, from humpback whales blowing to albatross soaring overhead, from porpoising penguins to leopard seals lazing on ice floes.

Do you have any funny stories from filming this series? While the ship was docked in New Orleans I brought some bizarre swamp creatures on board to show passengers, including an alligator snapping turtle and an amphiuma, a strange salamander named Chrissie by its owner, local scientist John Pojman. When I brought out Chrissie in front of an audience however she proved to be an extremely slippery customer, and I couldn't keep hold of her - she squirmed out of my grasp and towards the feet of the front row! Of course, the crowd loved it and roared with laughter while I attempted to grapple her back into her box!

Finally, what was your animal encounter highlight? In Dominica in the Caribbean I had an amazing encounter with sperm whales. After tracking the leviathans using special underwater microphones that picked up their songs from a distance, I jumped into the warm waters and floated, awestruck, as one of the enormous beasts swam right past me, close enough to touch!

Nigel Marven's Cruise Ship Adventures comes to Watch in May.