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Greenland, Iceland, and Norway – The Arctic Fjords Expedition

Scandinavia / Norway Cruise Information

Summary : Visit Iceland, Greenland, and Norway on this incredible voyage that features the incredible fjords of the Arctic. On this amazing expedition, you'll explore the magnificent nature of Greenland in the Scoresbysund fjord, the biggest fjord system in the world, which extends 217 miles inland and offers spectacular scenery and tranquil surroundings. Starting in Iceland’s capital, Reykjavik, cross the ocean to visit the most isolated and remote town in Greenland. Ittoqqortoormiit is almost as far as you can get from any other inhabited area in Greenland. Ice blocks in the ocean isolate the town up to nine months of the year. Neighboring the town is the world’s largest national park, Northeast Greenland National Park, a vast wilderness featuring 11,000 miles of rugged coastline. Then, you will spend eight days sailing in the world’s biggest fjord system, featuring high mountains, basalt cliffs, and vast wilderness. The awesome beauty of this enormous fjord system is enhanced further by its teeming wildlife. You will see birds, musk oxen, reindeer, walrus, and maybe even a polar bear. Several places show no evidence that people have ever set foot there before.We'll also cross the Arctic Ocean and land on Jan Mayen, a volcanic island in the middle of the sea. You’ll then have the chance to see some of the Norwegian fjords and the hidden pearls along the rugged Norwegian coast.

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

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Itinerary
Day 1
Reykjavik, Iceland

Iceland’s capital, Reykjavik, is home to an impressive collection of interesting attractions and places of historic significance, from landmarks such as Hallgrímskirkja and the Pearl to the natural wonders in close proximity to the city – including glaciers, waterfalls, geysers, and mountains. Enjoy discovering Reykjavik on your own before you embark MS Fram in the afternoon.

Day 2
Ísafjörður

Ísafjörður was an ancient church site before becoming a trading port in the 16th century. Today, it boasts charming streets of old timber houses, many of which have remained unchanged since the 18th century when the harbor was full of ships and Norwegian whaling crews. Explore the city on your own or join the expedition team on activities including hikes, horseback riding, and sampling the local cuisine.

Day 3
Ittoqqortoormiit

Ittoqqortoormiit (or Scoresbysund) is the most isolated town in Greenland. With only 560 inhabitants, the trappers living here are the only people allowed to hunt within the Northeast Greenland National Park. As you explore the town, you’ll probably notice the racks used by these hunters to dry animal skins. The town is right next to the world’s largest and deepest multi-branched fjord system. A special basalt rock formation with horizontal lines runs through the cliffs, marking the transition to the even more desolate area of Northeastern Greenland.

Day 4 – 8
Scoresbysund Fjord System

On Day 4 you will start exploring the world’s largest fjord system. Notice the change in climate as you leave the warmer waters of the Gulf Stream and enter the cold-water current that follows the coast of East Greenland. Some of the places you visit on this expedition have not been visited by other humans for the last 200 years, if at all!

As you explore the Scoresbysund fjord system, you will attempt to land in several places. These landings are performed as pure wilderness expeditions. When you visit Syd Kap, the former trading post, you will see old blubber ovens and the remains of Thule dwellings. In Bjørne Øer, you can see even larger remains of an old Thule settlement. The hunters’ cabin in Hecla Havn is a great place to spot birds and smaller mammals, including Arctic hare, lemming, and ptarmigans. At Viking Bay, you can study the columnar basalt rock formations or visit a large glacier. Qupaulakajik is significant for its abundance of plant fossils – fossils over 200 million years old can be found here.

Day 9
Jan Mayen

The Norwegian island of Jan Mayen is one of the most isolated in the world. Located where the North American and Eurasian tectonic plates meet, the island is home to Beerenberg, the northernmost active volcano on Earth. Dutch whalers operated from Jan Mayen in the 16th century, but today only a Norwegian weather station accommodates a few brave individuals throughout the year. Visits to Jan Mayen are extremely rare, especially from tourists. As one of the few vessels operating in this area, MS Fram and its crew will attempt to make a rare landing on this most exotic Arctic island.

Day 10
At Sea

Spend the day at sea and enjoy the opportunity to relax or attend lectures.

Day 11
Raftsundet, Trollfjord, and the Lofoten Islands

As you reach the Norwegian mainland, you will sail through the narrow Raftsund before navigating into the even narrower Trollfjord, where the vertical mountain walls rise right out of the sea. Then, spend the day in Lofoten, giving you the opportunity to explore this spectacular area, known for its excellent fishing, extreme nature, and picturesque fishing villages.

Day 12
Torghatten

Torghatten is one of the famous landmarks along the Helgeland coast, and from the deck you have front row seats to this mountain with a hole in the middle.

Day 13
Sistranda and Frøya

The island of Frøya is located off the coast of Trøndelag and is surrounded by more than 5,400 islets and reefs, making up an amazing archipelago. Sistranda is the administrative center and a charming little village.

Day 14
Åndalsnes

Spend a day in Åndalsnes, a popular destination due to its location at the foot of spectacular mountains. The Trollstigen mountain road and Vermafossen Waterfall are both popular attractions here.

Day 15
Bergen

Your expedition ends in Bergen. Take the opportunity to spend some time strolling through the streets and enjoy sites such as Bergen’s colorful UNESCO-listed Bryggen district before you fly home.

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:

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 from the U.S.; travel protection plan; luggage handling; optional excursions and gratuities; fuel surcharge may apply.

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