Summary : This celebrated Arctic cruise explores the icebergs, glaciers and colorful fishing villages of West Greendland, before crossing the Davis Strait to the stunning fjords of Baffin Island, Canada's largest island. You will be constantly on the lookout for variety of birdlife and marine wildlife—including polar bears, beluga whales, and seals. This voyage gives fascinating insights to the life above the Arctic circle. Sea kayaking, plenty of photography opportunities and hiking excursions are only some of the highlights of this Arctic expedition cruise.
Activities : Birding, Child-Friendly, Culture, Hiking, Kayaking, Triple/Quad Cabins
$6,695 to $12,295
You will depart Ottawa this morning on your charter flight* to Kangerlussuaq, situated on the west coast of Greenland. Upon arrival in Kangerlussuaq, enjoy a short tour before boarding the ship in the afternoon. After settling into your cabins and exploring the vessel, you will meet your expedition team and fellow passengers.
*See Additional Costs under Rate Notes for round-trip charter flight details.
Explore the fjord behind the colorful town of Sisimiut before going ashore to visit this beautiful location in the afternoon. Hope to meet a few of the traditional Greenlandic kayakers and perhaps see a demonstration of ‘Eskimo Rolling’ by one of the former champions of the Greenland Kayaking Championships.
If one word could sum up today’s experience, it would be ‘ice’. Truly one of the wonders of the world, the Jacobshavn Icefjord—a UNESCO World Heritage Site—spews giant tabular icebergs out into Disko Bay. Your approach to Ilulissat is always dependent on the amount of ice in and around the mouth of the fjord. Your captain and officers are skilled ice navigators and your ship has one of the highest ice ratings of any expedition cruise ship exploring Arctic waters.
A very large island in the mouth of Disko Bay, Qeqertarsuaq is a site of both geologic and historic interest. A possible summer fishing camp for the Viking colonists in Greenland, mineral deposits containing native iron and hot springs are all part of the allure of this island. We will visit the southern coast, cruising the spectacular rock arches before visiting the town of Qeqertarsuaq.
Today you will leave the rugged coastline of Greenland to cross the Davis Strait towards Canada. As you transit Davis Strait you are always on the lookout for fin, sperm, sei and humpback whales, as well as the numerous species of Arctic seals and seabirds that inhabit these waters. Your onboard experts will deliver fascinating presentations focusing on the wildlife, history, geology and culture of the Arctic.
Sunshine Fjord straddles the Arctic Circle at 66 degrees, 33 minutes north of latitude. Depending on the weather, you might cruise across the Arctic Circle on the ship, cross it in the Zodiac boats or the more active option may be to cross the circle on foot. Whichever way, it’s a thrill to be above the Arctic Circle at last! Sunshine Fjord offers terrific hiking opportunities and you will have a number of great routes in mind.
Protecting the northern entrance to Cumberland Sound, Cape Mercy is an exposed headland jutting out into the Davis Strait. As the Baffin Bay middle ice recedes throughout the summer, the stretch of Baffin coast from Cape Mercy to Cape Dyer is a great place to look for polar bears coming ashore. You will have all eyes searching you sail this region.
Nestled in the heart of Cumberland Sound and the western gateway to Auyuittuq National Park, the village of Pangnirtung is beautifully situated between the mountains and the sea. This remote Inuit community is a well-known center for traditional and contemporary arts and crafts including carvings, prints and textiles. In addition the Angmarlik Visitor Center has a wonderful interpretive display featuring the lifestyle of the Thule and of the modern Inuit.
Situated in the Davis Strait, the rocky dome of Monumental Island can be seen from a distance. Explore by Zodiac along the rocky shoreline and hope to encounter polar bears in this vicinity. In good weather a complete circumnavigation of the island is possible.
At the mouth of Frobisher Bay on the southeast tip of Baffin Island, the Lower Savage Islands are a geological wonder. A maze of channels criss-cross the islands and provide superb Zodiac cruising opportunities. It's possible to navigate from one side of the island to the other where the ship will collect you. The islands are ideally situated between the dynamic flow of the Hudson Strait and this mixing of nutrient-rich waters makes for a diversity of Arctic wildlife, including polar bear.
Today your expedition will come to an end as you arrive in Iqaluit, the capital of Nunavut. Disembark the ship and bid farewell to your crew and fellow passengers. Then transfer to the airport for your flight to Ottawa. A transfer is also provided from the airport into a central downtown location.
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. ExpeditionTrips is not responsible for itinerary changes.
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.
All guests are required to have comprehensive travel insurance. The travel insurance must cover accidents, injury, illness and death, medical expenses, including any related to pre-existing medical conditions, emergency repatriation (including helicopter), luggage and personal effects, and personal liability. It is strongly recommended that you purchase cancellation and curtailment insurance. 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. Other conditions may apply based on pre-existing conditions. ExpeditionTrips can assist U.S. residents with travel protection options.
This trip commences in Ottawa—Canada's elegant capital city. It is advised that you arrive in Ottawa at least one day prior to the scheduled voyage departure date. This gives you a buffer in the event of any unexpected travel delays between home and the trip departure time. From Ottawa you will fly northeast to Kangerlussuaq in Greenland and after a tour of the town and surroundings, transfer to the ship for embarkation via Zodiac.
Kayaking: pre-booking required
Limited to 16 passengers. Guests will be accompanied by 3 kayak guides. This activity requires previous experience. It must be booked in advanced, there is no option to book once onboard. Please contact ExpeditionTrips for details and booking information.
Transfer to Ottawa airport and to the ship on embarkation day; transfer at the end of the voyage in Iqaluit and on arrival back in Ottawa at the end of the voyage to a central downtown location; cabin accommodations and meals onboard the ship; daily afternoon tea; 24-hour tea, coffee, and hot chocolate in the lounge and in all cabins (replenished daily); expertise of experienced expedition leader and professional expedition team of marine biologists, naturalists, historians, adventure guides, and photographers; daily shore excursions by Zodiac boat in small groups; guided hikes and walks on shore; educational presentations and talks by polar experts; access to computers in the multimedia lab for image downloads, file back up, and management; emergency-trained physician onboard every voyage; onboard sauna, plunge pool, Jacuzzi, and fitness center with personal trainer and massage options (additional charges apply for massage and spa treatments); well-stocked library with polar reference books; end of voyage video, photos, and take home USB; port fees and permits to access visited areas; and gear on loan (waterproof/windproof jacket, bib pants, insulated rubber boots, binoculars, and trekking poles). Subject to change without notice.
Any international or local airfare unless otherwise specified in the voyage itinerary; visa and passport expenses; pre- or post-cruise transfers unless otherwise specified in the itinerary (or pre-arranged); personal expenses on board such as alcoholic beverages, bar charges, or laundry expenses; telecommunications charges (i.e. email, satellite phone); baggage, cancellation, or medical travel insurance-related expenses (travel insurance is mandatory on all voyages); a voluntary gratuity at the end of the voyage for expedition staff and ship crew; fuel surcharge may apply.
PHOTOS: © Daisy Gilardini, © David McEown, © Nate Small