Summary : Depart Iceland’s coastal capital and set sail on this Greenlandic adventure. Days at sea give plenty of time for identifying seabirds and whale-spotting, while Zodiac cruises allow you to experience the massive glaciers and ice floes first hand. Dramatic rugged landscapes are perfectly balanced with picturesque villages during your journey.
Activities : Birding, Culture, Hiking, Kayaking, Photography, Triple/Quad Cabins
- Free airfare from select gateways
(or up to a $1,500 Non-use Air Credit)
$13,800 to $39,900
Embark the Silver Cloud and depart on your exciting expedition. After settling into your suite and attending a safety drill you will be setting sail. Meet the members of your Expedition Team and attend the first of many memorable dinners in one of the restaurants.
Located on Greenland’s relatively rarely visited rugged east coast, Skoldungen Fjord has enchanting scenery with towering mountains tipped with snow, ice-scraped valley sides and sculptured icebergs in shades of white and blue. At the top of the fjord one can easily see the retreating state of the Thrym Glacier. The U-shaped fjord offers spectacular scenery and as an extra perk, it is not uncommon to see whales in the fjord.
Connecting the Denmark Strait with Davis Strait, Prins Christian Sund offers a protected course from southeastern to southwestern Greenland, and is one of South Greenland’s most dramatic natural features. The water is generally placid and the crisp scent of ice fills the air. On either side of the Sund, waterfalls stream down sharp, wrinkled mountainsides. Depending on weather conditions, icebergs that glitter in the sun may be constant companions during the passage. Born of compacted ancient snows that formed glaciers and now calve into the sound at the glacier’s edge.
Aapilattoq is a small settlement near the western end of Prins Christian Sund in southwestern Greenland. In the local Greenlandic language the name means, "sea anemone". This small village of 130 inhabitants, hidden behind a prominent rock, offers a good insight into the life of Greenlandic Inuit. A stroll through the village will reveal a small school and a church, along with the likely possibility of seeing a polar bear skin drying in the wind behind a local dwelling. People have lived off the land in the area around Aapilattoq since the 19th century.
Nanortalik lies in a scenic area surrounded by steep mountainsides and is Greenland’s tenth-largest and most southerly town with less than 1,500 inhabitants. The town’s name means the “place of polar bears”, which refers to the polar bears that used to be seen floating offshore on summer’s ice floes. Nanortalik has an excellent open-air museum that gives a broad picture of the region from Inuit times to today. Part of the exhibition is a summer hunting camp, where Inuit in traditional clothing describe aspects of their ancestor’s customs and lifestyle.
Uunartoq is a small island in South Greenland a short distance east of what once was considered the largest settlement in Greenland. The island has hot springs that were renowned as far back as the days of the Norse for their healing effects. Three naturally heated streams have been channeled to flow into a knee-deep and stone-lined pool. While one unwinds by soaking in the steaming waters, one can watch icebergs that either clog the fjord to the north or come floating by.
The largest town in southern Greenland, Qaqortoq has been inhabited since prehistoric times. Upon arrival in this charming southern Greenland enclave, it's easy to see why. Qaqortoq rises quite steeply over the fjord system around the city, offering breath-taking panoramic vistas of the surrounding mountains, deep, blue sea, Lake Tasersuag, icebergs in the bay, and pastoral backcountry. Although the earliest signs of ancient civilization in Qaqortoq date back 4,300 years, Qaqortoq is known to have been inhabited by Norse and Inuit settlers in the 10th and 12th centuries.
Northeast of Qaqortoq and at the end of a fjord, Hvalsey is one of the best examples of South Greenland’s many scattered ruins from the Norse period. Today the area is used for sheep-grazing, but until the 15th century the settlement at Hvalsey, and specifically Hvalsey’s church, played an important part. Christianity had spread its influence throughout Europe and eventually had reached remote Greenland, where it established itself in the country in 1000 AD. Hvalsey Church was built in the 14th century and is the best preserved of the churches in Greenland from that period.
Qassiarsuk is the newer, Greenlandic name for this small village. Brattahlid is the older, Norse name. Here you tour the foundation remains of the manor house of Erik the Red, who found Greenland after being banished from Iceland and Norway for murder. Visit the site of the first Christian church ever built in North America (physiographically speaking), see a recently unearthed Norse graveyard that contains remains of 144 Norse colonists, and have a chance to admire Hans Lynge’s remarkable bronze sculpture of Erik the Red.
Itilleq is an idyllic little village located on a small island about a half a mile off the west coast of Greenland, and only about a mile north of the Arctic Circle. It is one of the most picturesque villages in Greenland with its quaint colorful houses surrounded by stunning rugged mountains and glaciers. Originally, the village of Itilleq was founded on another island in 1847, but was later moved to its present location. The 100 people living here today survive mainly on hunting and fishing, with a fish factory being the main employer.
Nuuk, meaning “the cape”, was Greenland’s first town (1728). Started as a fort and later mission and trading post, it is the current capital. Almost 30% of Greenland’s population lives in the town. Not only does Nuuk have great natural beauty in its vicinity, but there are Inuit ruins, Hans Egede’s home, the parliament, and the Church of our Savior as well. The Greenlandic National Museum has an outstanding collection of Greenlandic traditional dresses, as well as the famous Qilakitsoq mummies.
The fjords in this area can reach close to a half mile of depth and are lined with tidewater glaciers from the Maniitsoq ice sheet located high up in the interior of Greenland. Some of the cliffs along the fjords of this region can exceed 6,600 ft. in height.
The Evigheids Glacier flows from the Greenland Ice Sheet, the second largest ice body in the world after the Antarctic ice sheet, to the west. It is a slow-moving tidewater glacier, meaning this valley glacier winds down through the coastal mountains to the ocean at a snail’s pace. As the glacial ice enters the water it begins to float and the eventually breaks apart into icebergs that float away down the fjord. The shades of blue and carved shapes of these ice floes are infinite.
Only 350 people live in the small Greenlandic community of Kangaamiut. Located on the south coast of Timerdlit Island and facing the Davis Strait, Kangaamiut is situated between the mouths of two long fjords: the Kangerlussuatsiaq Fjord (or Evighedsfjorden in Danish) to its south and to its north Kangaamiut Kangerluarsuat Fjord. Founded in 1755, it was called “Sugarloaf” (Sukkertoppen) because of the appearance of three nearby hills.
Known as the birthplace of icebergs, the Ilulissat Icefjord produces nearly 20 million tons of ice each day. In fact, the word Ilulissat means “icebergs” in the Kalaallisut language. The town of Ilulissat is known for its long periods of calm and settled weather, but the climate tends to be cold due to its proximity to the fjord. Approximately 4,500 people live in Ilulissat, the third-largest town in Greenland after Nuuk and Sisimiut. Some people here estimate that there are nearly as many sled dogs as human beings living in the town.
Located just north of the Arctic Circle, Sisimiut is the northernmost town in Greenland where the port remains free of ice in the winter. Yet it is also the southernmost town where there is enough snow and ice to drive a dogsled in winter and spring. In Sisimiut, traveling by sled has been the primary means of winter transportation for centuries. In fact, the area has been inhabited for approximately 4,500 years. Modern Sisimiut is the largest business center in the north of Greenland, and is one of the fastest growing Greenlandic cities.
After breakfast, disembark the Silver Cloud.
Read this itinerary as a guide only; the exact route and program varies according to ice and weather conditions - and the wildlife you encounter. Flexibility is the key to the success of this expedition. ExpeditionTrips is not responsible for itinerary changes.
Although travel insurance is not mandatory to participate in this voyage, ExpeditionTrips strongly recommends Emergency Medical/Evacuation coverage which includes coverage for cancellation, trip disruption, baggage and personal property. Other conditions may apply based on pre-existing conditions. ExpeditionTrips can assist U.S. residents with travel protection options.
Unique to Silver Cloud, the Photo Studio offers a vibrant, creatively inspiring space where you can not only master the art of digital photography with Masterclasses, but also offers an editing suite where you can print images using state-of-the-art equipment plus a dedicated photo manager.
Kayaking will be offered complimentary and will run on a first-come-first-serve sign up basis. Guests cannot pre book the kayak tours. Participation requires good physical condition and right of participation is reserved. The kayak guides will make the final determination if a guest is fit to participate. Kayaking will be weather dependent. Minimum age 16. Guests should know how to use a rudder on a kayak.
Shipboard accommodations; kayaking; Wi-Fi onboard ship; parka; backpack; one voyage highlights DVD per cabin; most meals onboard ship; butler service onboard ship; select wines, champagnes, spirits, and soft drinks onboard ship; gratuities (except spa) onboard ship. Royal, Grand, and Owner’s Suites receive laundry service throughout the voyage as well as dinner for two in La Dame (one evening per voyage) and two hours of worldwide phone use from your suite, per voyage. Subject to change without notice.
Airfare not mentioned; meals on board at La Dame Restaurant unless mentioned above as included; some alcoholic premium beverages; travel insurance; government fees and taxes; visa and passport expenses; gifts and items of a personal nature such as laundry (unless mentioned as included) and spa options; fuel surcharge may apply.
Photo Credit: © Creative Services at Silversea Cruises, © Daniela Plaza