Seven Russian yachtsmen stood proudly on the docks of St Petersburg as the national anthem bellowed out to celebrate them setting a new record for a round-the-world voyage through the icy Arctic Ocean.
It is the shortest and most dangerous round-the-world route to navigate and ships can pass only during a few months of the year due to the thick ice.
It was the first world cruise for a surface ship.
The Peter the First set off in June and successfully circumnavigated the icy waters in just one navigation season which usually lasts as a rule from July to the end of September.
They sailed 9023 nautical miles around the Arctic Ocean, survived a seven-grade storm in the Barents Sea, and sailed three thousand nautical miles amid heavy ice floes.
They arrived in St Petersburg 109 day later.
“It is a very strange feeling. We do not believe that we have returned home finally. It was such a long trip. And the expedition was not an easy one,” said yacht chiefmate Elena Solovyova on arrival.