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Greenland to Svalbard

Greenland Cruise

Summary : This expedition starts in Greenland, where the Arctic wilderness offers some of the most spectacular and unspoiled scenery on earth. Join an experienced expedition team and sail under the midnight sun through a landscape that is rich in culture and history and features spectacular wildlife. Your expedition team includes locals to give you an authentic experience of the true Greenland. Discover the true meaning of isolation in Jan Mayen, the most isolated island in the Northern Hemisphere. This exotic outpost has no permanent settlers except for the 18 people working at the Norwegian radio and meteorological station. From lush nature to dramatic tundra, Reykjavik is ideal for recreational activities. The dramatic, rugged landscape features volcanic craters, caves, lava fields, geothermal waters, and hot springs. A variety of restaurants, museums, churches, lighthouses, and festivals add a surprisingly rich cultural offering. Iceland's unspoiled landscapes feature stunning waterfalls, green meadows, volcanic craters, caves, lava fields, geothermal waters, and hot springs form a lush contrast to the places we visit after it. The dramatic tundra nature in Spitsbergen is no less impressive with the magnificent Isfjord, majestic mountains, and impressive wilderness only inhabited by birds, seals, walrus, and polar bears.

Activities : Birding, Child-Friendly, Culture, Hiking, Kayaking

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Itinerary
Day 1
Copenhagen / Kangerlussuaq

This expedition starts with a flight from Copenhagen. Less than five hours later you will reach the settlement of Kangerlussuaq in Greenland. This small airstrip is the main gateway to Greenland, and on arrival your transfer to MS Fram will be waiting for you.

Day 2
Nuuk

Nuuk is the capital and the oldest town in Greenland. Old and new traditions meet here, from picturesque old buildings in ‘Kolonihaven’ to the modern buildings of the Greenland Home Rule. It is located on the tip of a large peninsula, at the mouth of one of the largest and most spectacular fjord systems in the world.

Day 3
Ivituut

The abandoned mining town of Ivittuut is a stronghold for musk oxen. Vikings settled the area more than a thousand years ago. Ivittuut was built on the ruins of the so-called Norse Middle Settlement. In summertime we might meet some hunters who return to inhabit the old houses by the sea.

Day 4
Qassiarsuk

A little over a thousand years ago (985 A.D.), a group of Norsemen left Iceland to settle in Greenland. Their leader, Erik the Red, named his chieftain’s seat Brattahlíð, meaning ‘steep hill’ in Old Norse. Soon afterward, the Norsemen established a flourishing community in the fjord. Farming is still the main occupation in Qassiarsuk, and the sheep farmers in the area cultivate the same fields and let their animals graze on the same hillsides. Enjoy a guided walk through the village and see the reconstructions of Erik the Red’s farm and the church he built for his wife, Tjodhilde’s Church.

Day 5 – 6
At Sea, Nunap Isua and the Denmark Strait

You will spend two days at sea, sailing around the southernmost point of Greenland called Nunap Isua (Cape Farewell) before traveling across the Denmark Strait en route to Iceland.

Day 7
Reykjavik

Reykjavik is the world’s northernmost capital city. Norwegian settlers named the place Reykjavik (meaning ‘Smoky Bay’) after the columns of steam that rose from the hot springs in the area and made such a profound impression. Its surrounding areas offer fantastic natural beauty with geysers, mountains, glaciers, and hot springs.

Day 8
Stykkishólmur

As you reach the west region of Iceland, you
will understand why this area is called ‘The
Sagaland’. Take your time to explore
Stykkishólmur’s diversity with lava and rock
formations, glaciers, volcanic activity, and hot
and cold springs. Participate in a range of exciting
excursions such as kayaking, hiking, and
horseback riding.

Day 9
At Sea, Greenland Sea

You will be sailing along the Mid-Atlantic Ridge, a tectonic plate that separates the Eurasian and North American continents. This mid-ocean ridge is a part of the longest underwater mountain range in the world.

Day 10
Jan Mayen

Jan Mayen is the most isolated island in the Northern Hemisphere. It is home to the Beerenberg Volcano, the northernmost active volcano on earth. Tourists visiting and actually landing on the shores of Jan Mayen are extremely rare. You will make an attempt here to set foot on this exotic outpost.

Day 11
At Sea, Barents Sea / Arctic Ocean

Enjoy a day with lectures from the expedition team as you sail toward Spitsbergen and Longyearbyen.

Day 12
Longyearbyen, Spitsbergen

The Isfjord is the most prominent fjord system on Svalbard, and you will sail through it on your way to Longyearbyen. You will arrive at this unique and exotic settlement during the night.

Day 13
Longyearbyen / Oslo

As you have reached the end destination for this expedition, you will probably sense that time has passed faster than expected. Lingering in the subtle exhilaration of having spent time on top of the globe, just a few hundred miles from the Geographic North Pole. An early morning transfer takes you to the airport for your flight back to Oslo.

Notes

The above itinerary is a guide only, as the exact program depends on weather and ice conditions and the wildlife you encounter. Flexibility is the key to the success of this expedition. ExpeditionTrips is not responsible for itinerary changes.

Travel Insurance:

Although travel insurance is not mandatory to participate in this voyage, ExpeditionTrips strongly recommends at least $200,000 Emergency Medical/Evacuation coverage for Arctic trips which includes coverage for cancellation, trip disruption, baggage and personal property. ExpeditionTrips can assist you with this.

Multilingual Departures:
English/Norwegian/German (All Departures)

Deck Camping:
Depending on weather conditions, there may be an opportunity to sign up for deck camping during the voyage. Spend the night on deck and enjoy a magnificent view of the landscape and sky. Included: Sleeping bags, a welcome drink, and a fresh pastry and coffee in the morning. Please contact ExpeditionTrips for details.

Fishing:
Depending on weather conditions, there may be an opportunity to sign up for fishing during the voyage. Set out on a 2.5-3 hour fishing trip to try your luck as a fisherman. You will be joined by an officer and members of the crew. When you return to the ship, you will be invited to meet the chef, prepare your catch, and have it served for dinner. Max. Capacity: 3 passengers. Included: waterproof clothing and a fishing rod. Fishing is not pre-bookable or guaranteed. Please contact ExpeditionTrips for details.

Glacier Walking:
Depending on weather and land conditions, there may be an opportunity to sign up for a glacier walk during the voyage. Experience close encounters with nature on a 1-2 hour glacier hike with an experienced guide. Included: crampons and rubber boots. Max. Capacity: 12-18 passengers. Glacier walking is not pre-bookable or guaranteed. Please contact ExpeditionTrips for details.

Hiking:
Depending on weather and land conditions, there may be an opportunity to sign up for hiking during the voyage. Included: Water bottle, snack bar, and lunch pack (if hike is during lunch time). Physical fitness is essential. Please contact ExpeditionTrips for details.

Kayaking:

Depending on weather conditions, there may be an opportunity to sign up for kayaking during the voyage. The duration of each excursion is 2-4 hours. Due to popular demand, kayakers are chosen by a lottery system. Kayaking is not pre-bookable or guaranteed. Basic kayak experience required. Includes kayaking gear. Please contact ExpeditionTrips for details.

Science Center:
Included
'Hands-on' science program where guests can perform their own science experiments with the assistance of professional biologists and geologists. Featuring ten Leica DM500 biological microscopes and ten Leica EZ4 geological microscopes, groups of 2-3 guests per microscope will work with a trained biologist or geologist. Occasionally, scientists invite guests along to sample biomaterial for use in the science center. There is also a large screen connected to the scientist's microscope for viewing during every session.

Small Boat Cruising:

Depending on the weather conditions, there may be an opportunity to sign up for small boat ‘Polarcirkel’ cruising excursions during the voyage. The duration of each excursion is 1-2 hours. Included: Survival float suit, and a hot drink upon return. Small boat cruising is not pre-bookable or guaranteed. Max. Capacity: 21 passengers. Please contact ExpeditionTrips for details.

Included:

Economy flights from Copenhagen to Kangerlussuaq and Longyearbyen to Oslo; transfer from the airport to the ship in Kangerlussuaq; transfer form the ship to the airport in Longyearbyen; cabin accommodations and meals aboard the ship; landings and activities onboard and ashore; professional English-speaking expedition team that gives lectures and accompanies landings and activities; onboard 'hands-on' science center; complimentary tea and coffee; gear on loan (waterproof rubber boots); and a wind- and water-resistant jacket. Expedition Suites (M + MG) include a cabin kit with a bathrobe, slippers, and other beauty articles. Subject to change without notice.

Not Included:
International flights to/from the U.S.; travel protection plan; luggage handling; optional excursions and gratuities; fuel surcharge may apply.

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