Summary : Thrill at remote Siberian shores and far northern archipelagos—including Franz Josef Land, New Siberian Islands and Wrangel Island—little changed since the days of Nordenskjold, Amundsen and intrepid explorers of the last century. National Geographic Endurance roams free at the top of the world on the most untrammeled, adventurous route in the High Arctic on this epic voyage.
NOTE: This is ship is currently being built and all details are subject to change.
Activities : Birding, Child-Friendly, Culture, Hiking, Kayaking, Photography, Dedicated Solo Cabins, Triple/Quad Cabins
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Depart on an overnight flight to Oslo.
Upon arrival, check into your hotel. In the afternoon, explore this charming city. Stroll among the famed Vigeland sculptures—hundreds of life-size human figures set in terraced Frogner Park. Visit the Fram Museum, dedicated to the wooden ship sailed by Norwegian explorers Nansen and Amundsen. The evening is at your leisure.
Fly on a chartered flight from Oslo to Tromsø and embark National Geographic Endurance.
Explore Norway’s spectacular northern coast. Carved by glaciers over millions of years, these shores are laced with steep-walled fjords, mountainous islands, and chiseled peaks. Cruise along vertical rock faces, and through serene fjords. Be on the lookout for seabirds and marine mammals and learn about the region from the ship's expert natural history staff.
In keeping with the nature of an expedition, your day-by-day itinerary will be flexible. Take full advantage of the extensive experience of your captain, crew, and staff as well as the technological resources and ice-strengthened ship to chart a course around impenetrable ice, through one of the most remote regions on Earth, and toward once-in-a-lifetime sightings of the Arctic’s incredible wildlife. Listed below are some of the stops you may make during your expedition.
Franz Josef Land:
Located just over 550 miles from the North Pole, Franz Josef Land is the world’s northernmost archipelago; its uninhabited islands remain frozen under vast ice sheets for much of the year. In 2013, National Geographic Explorer-in-Residence Enric Sala led an expedition in the surrounding Arctic waters as part of the Pristine Seas project, capturing the first deep-sea footage of the rare Greenland shark. Our ship, Zodiacs, and kayaks bring you close to the archipelago’s dramatic icescapes, seldom seen coastlines, and out-of-this-world scenery at the top of the planet. Observe polar bears from the ship deck, and go ashore for naturalist-led walks to search for walruses, arctic seabird colonies, and narwhals.
Watch for Arctic wildlife as the ship navigates past Ice Harbor, where Dutch explorer Willem Barents spent the winter between 1596 and 1597. Cruise the Barents Sea en route to the heavily glaciated coastlines of the Novaya Zemlya archipelago, a chain of mountainous islands draped in ice that have yet to be thoroughly explored. Seals, walruses, and polar bears may be found on coastal ice floes year-round, and rich birdlife inhabits the shorelines during the summer months.
Sailing under 24 hours of daylight, your naturalists will be on deck, seeking out beluga whales and other marine mammals that inhabit the shallow coastal waters bordering the Severnaya Zemlya archipelago. Discovered only in 1930, this chain of isles—separated from the coast of northern Siberia by the Vil’kitskogo Strait—is one of the planet’s most recently charted territories. Pass Cape Chelyuskin, the most northerly point of the Eurasian continent, on our way west.
New Siberian Islands:
Often surrounded by heavy pack ice, the volcanic spires, cliffs, and buttresses of these rocky outposts are a magnificent backdrop for abundant wildlife. Keep a lookout for elusive Ross’s gull, named after the British polar explorer. Walruses haul out on the ice in great numbers and seabirds nest on great cliffs on the De Long Islands, discovered by the 1881 "Jeannette" expedition in search of the North Pole.
East Siberian Sea:
Depending on sailing conditions, explore granite towers, tundra, and ancient ceremonial sites along shores where mammoths once roamed. The surrounding pack ice is an ideal place to find walruses, polar bears, and other wildlife of the circumpolar north.
Spend time exploring the World Heritage–listed Wrangel Island Reserve in the Arctic Ocean. With the world’s largest population of Pacific walruses and the highest density of ancestral polar bear dens, Wrangel Island offers incredible opportunities for wildlife viewing. The island escaped glaciation during the last ice age, and now has the highest level of biodiversity in the high Arctic, with an astonishing variety of plant life. It was also the last refuge of woolly mammoths, whose bones and teeth have been discovered amid the island’s riverbeds, providing intriguing clues to their past existence. Explore by ship, by Zodiac, and on foot, as you keep an eye out for gray whales, which can be found in these prime feeding grounds.
Go ashore at Kolyuchin Island and Kolyuchin Inlet on the northern Chukotka coast. An enormous tidal estuary, Kolyuchin Inlet offers excellent hiking and birding opportunities. Nearby, Kolyuchin Island is a high, cliff-lined isle where puffins and guillemots nest, and Pacific walruses occasionally sunbathe on the rocks below. Explore this remote and untouched coastline in a Zodiac, and conditions permitting, head ashore to go hiking with your naturalists.
Arrive in the remote city of Nome, Alaska, on the coast of the Bering Sea. Disembark to explore the town prior to your charter flight to Anchorage. In Anchorage transfer to flights home.
This itinerary is subject to change. ExpeditionTrips is not responsible for itinerary changes.
NOTE: This is a NEW ship that is currently being built. All details are subject to change.
Reverse Itinerary: 8/9/2020, 8/11/2021
ExpeditionTrips strongly recommends at least $200,000 Emergency Medical/Evacuation coverage for trips 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.
Lindblad-National Geographic Certified Photo Instructor:
On all departures, a certified photo instructor will be at your side and at your service to inspire and assist you. Take advantage of talks, presentations, slideshows and “laptop gallery” sharing events. All skill and interest levels are welcome; the instructors can meet you wherever you are on your journey. All you need to participate is a camera— point-and-shoot, smartphone, DSLR, whatever—and a sense of adventure. And you’re sure to return home with amazing photos.
Pre- and Post-Voyage Extension: Norwegian Fjords
The rich landscapes of southern Norway, including Sognefjord—the longest and deepest fjord in Norway—are the ideal addition to your adventures. 5 Days.
2020 Double Occupancy from $4,590 per person
2020 Single Occupancy from $5,190
One pre-cruise hotel night in Oslo; shipboard accommodations; kayaking; certified photo instructor; video chronicle of your trip; parka; all meals onboard ship; alcoholic beverages (except premium brands) onboard ship; soft drinks onboard ship; crew gratuities. Subject to change without notice.
Airfare; premium alcoholic beverages; visa and passport expenses; baggage/accident/travel protection plan; items of a personal nature such as laundry, spa, and Internet.
Photos ©: Ralph Lee Hopkins, Michael S Nolan, Stefan Lundgren