Arctic Cruise Adventure: Norway, Greenland & Iceland (2015)
Luxury Expedition Cruises: Expert-led expeditions to exotic locales, with shore excursions
- Day 1: Arrive Oslo, Norway
Arrive in Oslo, Norway’s modern capital city that also coexists in close harmony with nature. Transfer to your hotel before meeting your local guide for an afternoon walking tour. Tonight, gather for a private welcome reception in your hotel’s Speilen room, site of the Nobel Prize banquet.Radisson Blu Scandinavia Hotel
- Day 2: Longyearbyen | Long Year Town
Board a charter flight to Longyearbyen, the capital of Svalbard, also known as Spitsbergen, the sovereign Arctic archipelago of Norway. It is one of the most remote group of islands on the planet, with nearly two-thirds of its surface covered in glaciers. Tour the tiny town and its Arctic museum. Following lunch, board your expedition cruiser.'Le Boreal' | Meals: B L D
- Days 3-6: Svalbard Islands | Spectacular Archipelago
Very few people have the opportunity to view the remote wilderness of the Svalbard Islands. In the Svalbard archipelago, polar bears, walrus, Svalbard reindeer and an incredibly rich variety of birds are as abundant as are cathedrals of ice, glaciers and craggy mountain peaks. An amazing amount of diminutive flora surrounds this barren landscape, which comes alive with color under the August midnight sun. Svalbard’s wildlife is contrasted by the unexpected culture of its fishing villages. Your captain and expedition crew determine the day’s best sightseeing opportunities, which may include these extraordinary regions:
Magdalenefjoren: A stunning fjord with rugged rock walls, Magdalenefjoren surmounts blue-hued glaciers crisscrossed by crevasses, with birds perched in the high cliffs. This “glacier coast” provides magnificent views of slow-moving glaciers travelling out to sea as well as beaches frequented by walrus.
Ny Alesund: History here stretches back to the early Arctic explorers. Today, a polar research station occupies the site where a Norwegian coal mine once operated, and scientists study meteorology, seismology, atmospheric sciences and marine biology. Conditions permitting, you visit the small community, including a museum, art gallery and the northernmost post office in the world.
Alkjefellet (Auk Mountains): Set off on Zodiacs (sturdy inflatable boats) to explore the 325-foot sheer cliffs that are home to 60,000 guillemots and kittiwakes. These nests attract “poaching” polar bears and Arctic fox, who come for the feast of eggs and birds, and provide opportunities for us to view them safely from our Zodiacs.
Monaco Bay and Glacier: Located in Northwest Spitsbergen, Monaco Bay is frequented by a variety of wildlife populations, including polar bears, walrus, harbor and bearded seals, and a multitude of seabirds.
Liefdefjorden (Loves Bay): In far Northern Svalbard, this is an excellent area for spotting polar bears and other Arctic wildlife.
Throughout our landings and days of cruising in Spitsbergen, our primary objective will be to search for polar bears as they hunt in their true natural habitat — be it on land or among the ice floes. Each landing is under the close supervision of our bear guardians, who have the best knowledge about where to find the white giants.'Le Boreal' | Meals: B L D
- Days 7-8: Cruising the Greenland Sea | Along the Ice Edge
Cruise along the Arctic ice edge through the Greenland Sea, as lecturers recap their presentations on the wildlife, history and geology of Svalbard, and prepare you for the world’s largest island: Greenland. Spend time on board with new friends and the Expedition Team, ever on the lookout for wildlife.'Le Boreal' | Meals: B L D
- Days 9-11: Greenland | Franz Josef Fjords & Scoresby Sound
For the next three days, explore the rarely visited east coast of Greenland, Kejser Franz Josef Fjords and Scoresby Sound. Embark on twice-daily Zodiac excursions to cruise the intricate fjord network and search for musk ox and reindeer, which are common here. Ice conditions permitting, disembark for a visit in Ittoqqortoormiit, a small settlement founded in 1925 and one of the most isolated villages in Greenland. You may also visit the “warming island” of Uunartoq, which was once believed to be a point on the mainland of Greenland, and today provides further evidence of climate change.'Le Boreal' | Meals: B L D
- Day 12: Cruising the Denmark Strait | Confluence of Waters
Enjoy a relaxing day at sea cruising the relatively narrow strip of water that separates Greenland from Iceland, and connects the Arctic Sea with the Atlantic Ocean. Watch for seabirds and whales from the deck in between fascinating lectures presented by A&K’s Expedition Team. This evening, gather for a gala dinner hosted by the captain.'Le Boreal' | Meals: B L D
- Day 13: Husavik | Whale-Watching Haven
Arrive early in Husavik, the first permanent village settled in Iceland.
Visit the excellent Husavik Whale Museum, actively supported by A&K Philanthropy, and one of the world’s foremost centers focused on whales and their habitat. Afterward, choose to embark on a scenic whale watching tour followed by free time in Husavik. Or, set off for Godafoss and Lake Myvatn, a thermally active region that provides a rich habitat for a variety of wildlife.'Le Boreal' | Meals: B L D
- Day 14: Grundarfjördur | Journey to the Center of the Earth
Take in the glacier-carved terrain of Iceland’s West Fjords, highlighted by the sparkling waterfalls and icebergs of Drangajokull Glacier. Visit Grundarfjördur, one of the first villages in Iceland. Then, choose from three excursions. You may visit the Snaefellsnes Peninsula with its fishing villages, stunning Snaaefelsnes Glacier and views of the majestic, extinct Snaaefelsjokull volcano — the site that inspired Jules Verne’s fictional Journey to the Center of the Earth. You may also embark on a boat tour among the numerous islands of Breidafjörður, an archipelago teeming with exotic birds, followed by a catch of a fresh shellfish brought on board to enjoy straight from the sea. Or, you may hike well-known sites from the Icelandic Sagas, including the beautiful Berserkjahraun lava field; the 240-foot Mt. Helgafell (“The Holy Mountain”), with spectacular views over the Breidafjordur islands (weather permitting); and, the old town of Stykkisholmur and Bjarnarhofn (“Bear Harbor”), where you explore a shark museum and wooden Dutch church.'Le Boreal' | Meals: B L D
- Day 15: Depart Reykjavik
This morning, disembark ‘Le Boreal’ in Reykjavik and transfer to the airport for your return flight home, or continue on in Iceland with a Reykjavik extension.
*Please note: This itinerary is provisional and subject to change due to ice, weather, wildlife and other conditions beyond A&K's control. The final itinerary will be determined at the sole discretion of the Captain and Expedition Leader.
- Reykjavik Post-Tour Extension
4 days, priced from $2,195
Day 1: After breakfast, depart ‘Le Boreal’ with your A&K Expedition Team for a Reykjavík city tour. Radisson 1919 | Meals: B
Day 2: Today, choose from two full-day excursions: explore Iceland’s Golden Circle, including Thingvellir National Park, the geologically active Geyser region and the Gullfoss waterfall; or experience the Blue Lagoon. Radisson 1919 | Meals: B L
Day 3: Visit the Blue Lagoon or journey to the south shores of Iceland, including Skogarfoss waterfall, the black sand beach of Reynisfjara and an ice walk. Radisson 1919 | Meals: B
Day 4: Transfer to the airport for your flight home. Meals: B