East to the Arctic

Canadian Arctic Cruise

  • Akademik Ioffe
  • Research Ship
  • 96 Capacity
  • 12 Days
  • View Departure>
  • Price from
  • $999,999,999

Summary : Embark on a journey of amazing contrast, from St. Pierre, France to Iqaluit, Nunavut aboard an expedition vessel ideally suited for each and every need.  Experience the perfect blend of seabird colonies, wildlife exploration and the quest for sea ice while voyaging from the Maritimes to the Canadian Arctic. Cruise past Torngat Mountains National Park; established in 2005, it contains 9,700 square kilometers of Newfoundland’s magnificent wilderness. Wildlife sightings may include myriads of puffins and guillemots, pods of whales and majestic polar bears.

Activities : Birding, Culture, Hiking, Kayaking

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Itinerary
Day 1
St. Pierre, France

Embark your expedition vessel in St. Pierre, a bastion of the former French empire, and cruise along the coastline of Newfoundland.

Day 2
Western Newfoundland

Sail along the French shore of western Newfoundland and discover its fishing history at Port Au Port Peninsula. French fishermen have played an important role in its development over the past 500 years.

Day 3
Gros Morne National Park

Cruise into majestic Bonne Bay at the heart of Gros Morne National Park, where windswept spruce trees cover the cliffs soaring above the bay. Hike up to the National Park’s interpretation center accompanied by informative guides and explore the Tablelands, a UNESCO World Heritage geologic feature. As you gaze atop the lookout, keep an eye out for moose.

Day 4
L'Anse aux Meadows / Battle Harbor

Explore sod huts and Norse ruins at L’Anse aux Meadows, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, accompanied by a knowledgeable archeologist. Norseman Leif Erikson is thought to have founded “Vinland” here in 1000 CE. Encounter evidence that the Vikings discovered North America five hundred years before Columbus’ arrival.

In the afternoon, set sail for Labrador’s coast crossing the Strait of Belle Isle to arrive at Battle Harbor. Keep a lookout for humpback and Minke whales, along with seals and many species of pelagic birds. Built in 1852, Battle Harbor was a British settlement and is home to the Church of St. James the Apostle. Explore the restored fishing, whaling, commercial and religious buildings of this remote community amid the backdrop of breathtaking coastal views.

Day 5
Labrador Coast / Porcupine Strand

Sail along the wild and ruggedly beautiful coast of Labrador with sheer rock walls rising over 1,500 meters. Gaze from the ship's bridge and upper decks looking for humpback and Minke whales, white-beaked dolphins and orcas. Pass the proposed site for the Mealy Mountains National Park representing 39 distinct Canadian ecosystems and home to Labrador Innu, Inuit, Métis, descendants of European settlers and Quebec Innu. Explore Porcupine Strand, a spectacular length of beach on the Atlantic Coast sweeping in a graceful arc for over 40 kilometers. Signs of human habitation have been found here dating back 7,000 years.

Day 6
Hopedale, Labrador

The Canadian Shield’s ancient rocks cradle the hamlet of Hopedale, population 620. Cruise by Zodiac to visit Hopedale Moravian Mission; built in 1782 and said to be the oldest building east of Quebec. Discover the Moravian missionaries’ influence on the Inuit people of Northern Labrador by visiting the local museum and exploring town.

Day 7
Hebron, Labrador

Visit Hebron, once the northernmost settlement in Labrador. Established by Moravian missionaries in 1831, the Mission site remains but was closed in 1959. Designated as a National Historic Site in 1976, the buildings stand as a testament to the influence of Moravian missionaries on this very remote stretch of Labrador coast. Nunatsiavut Government ambassadors will welcome us to this site and share its history.

Day 8
Torngat Mountains National Park

Sail into Saglek Fjord, Torngat Mountains National Park's southern gateway; home to Canada’s highest mountains east of the Rockies, as well as breathtaking fjords and stunning barren landscapes. An Inuktitut word, Torngait, means “place of spirits” and the Torngat Mountains have been home to Inuit and their predecessors for over 7,500 years. Cruise by Zociac to shore and keep an eye out for migrating caribou herds and polar bears hunting seals along the coast.

Day 9
Nachvak Fjord

Experience beautiful 22 kilometer long Nachvak Fjord, deep and narrow this fjord is a place where whales, seals, walrus, Arctic fox and polar bears often congregate. Bird life is also in abundance including puffins and murres. Enjoy the striking scenery by ship and Zodiac, photographic opportunities abound.

Day 10
Button Islands

Named after Thomas Button who explored the area in 1612, these islands exist where an upwelling of nutrients occur on the edge of the continental shelf attracting thousands of seabirds and other marine mammals.

Day 11
Monumental Island

Sail across the mouth of Frobisher Bay to visit Monumental Island, small and steep-sided off the southeast coast of Baffin Island. Take a Zodiac cruise and watch for polar bears and walrus existing here in an uneasy truce. Enjoy a sumptuous fare at the captain’s farewell dinner, as the ship navigates its way back to Iqaluit, the capital city of Nunavut.

Day 12
Iqaluit, Nunavut

Disembark by Zodiac and, after a short tour of Iqaluit (if time and tides permit), transfer to the airport for your flight home.

Notes

Specific sites visited will depend on ice and weather conditions experienced and the itinerary will be updated throughout the voyage in order to take advantage of favorable conditions.

Medical Documentation: Once you have booked your voyage to the Polar Regions, you will be required to complete a Medical Information Form. This form must be completed, signed and returned no later than 90 days prior to departure.

Sea Kayaking Option: $695 per person
Pre-booked option for up to 16 guests. If you have experience sea kayaking and are interested in doing this activity during the expedition, you will need to book this option prior to departure from home. You cannot book this activity once onboard. There is a separate document for sea kayakers that you will need to review beforehand. Provided equipment includes full Gore-Tex drysuits, kayak specific PFD's, neoprene booties, a waterproof deck bag, pogies and many other vital paddling accessories.

Mandatory Insurance:
All guests are required to have comprehensive travel insurance which must cover accidents, injury, illness and death, medical expenses, including any related to pre-existing medical conditions, emergency repatriation (including helicopter) and personal liability. It must cover cancellation, curtailment and loss of luggage and personal effects. You must carry proof of insurance with you and produce it if requested by expedition staff. The expedition team reserves the right to cancel or suspend your participation on a trip or in certain activities that comprise part of a trip, at any time, including after the commencement of your tour, with no right of refund, if you are unable to provide proof of insurance when requested.

Included:
Transfer from the meeting point in St.Pierre to the ship, and transfer from the ship to the airport in Iqaluit; educational presentations; experienced team of naturalists and resident photographer; Zodiac excursions; all meals and farewell captain's dinner, afternoon tea with fresh snacks each afternoon, coffee, tea, and hot chocolate; onboard medical officer; use of multimedia station to download photos; use of foul weather gear sets – rain jacket with bib pants or SeaLine water proof backpack with Bushnell waterproof binoculars, both gear sets include Lacrosse gumboots.

Not Included:
All airfares; passport and visa fees; excess baggage charges; airport taxes; hotel accommodations; travel insurance; all gratuities; extra meals; items of a personal nature such as laundry, postage, drinks; medical expenses; optional activities and trips; kayaking supplement ($695 per person).