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The Complete Arctic:
Spitsbergen, Greenland & Iceland

Arctic Cruise Information

Summary : Embark on a voyage featuring the incredible scenery, culture, history, and wildlife of Svalbard, Greenland, and Iceland. Experience Spitsbergen's deep fjords, narrow channels, jagged snowy mountains peaks, and immense glaciers. Scout for reindeer, Arctic fox, and walrus. Cross the Greenland Sea for an exploration of Northeast Greenland National Park and discover Scorsebysund's beautiful fjord system and stunning icebergs. Visit the Inuit village of Ittoqqortoormiit, hike the tundra, and visit ancient Thule archeological sites. Keep an eye out for a variety of seabirds and whales as you sail through picturesque waters. Complete your journey in Reykjavik, Iceland. Along the way, learn from knowledgeable guides, attend lectures and photography workshops, or opt to kayak in pristine polar waters.

Activities : Birding, Culture, Hiking, Kayaking, Triple/Quad Cabins


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Day 1
Longyearbyen, Norway

Arrive in Longyearbyen, the adventure capital of the Norwegian territory of Svalbard and the starting point of your expedition. You are free to explore this fascinating Arctic settlement at your leisure. Your hotel for the night is included in the price of the voyage.

Day 2
Longyearbyen / Embark

Embark the ship in the afternoon. Transfers from the hotel are included. Explore the ship and get comfortable in your home away from home for the extraordinary adventure to come. The long days of summer sunlight illuminate your surroundings as the vessel slips her moorings and sails into a true wilderness where wildlife abounds. The scenery sailing through Isfjorden on the first evening is spectacular—there is already the possibility of marine mammal encounters.

Day 3 – 4

Svalbard is a true High Arctic wilderness and this part of the voyage is a real expedition. Your route and exploration opportunities here are heavily dependent on the weather and sea ice conditions encountered. Your experienced captain and expedition leader decide the itinerary and continually adjust plans as conditions and opportunities warrant.

Explore in the northwestern part of the island of Spitsbergen. This area contains some the archipelago’s most impressive scenery and some of the Arctic’s best wildlife viewing opportunities. Deep fjords and narrow channels are flanked by jagged snowy mountain peaks, immense tidewater glaciers calve icebergs into turquoise waters, and fields of flowering tundra are home to grazing reindeer and playful Arctic fox. Bountiful inshore and offshore waters are home to a wide variety of marine mammals. Keep an eye out for polar bears, which can be spotted in and around Svalbard.

Also in this area is Ny Ålesund, a former mining town that is now home to an international community of Arctic researchers, complete with museum, gift shop, and post office. This was also a staging area for historic attempts to discover the North Pole.

Day 5 – 6
Greenland Sea

From Svalbard, head southwest across the Greenland Sea toward East Greenland. In these far northern latitudes it is possible to encounter sea ice any time of the year. All along the way, remain vigilant for sightings of marine mammals such as whales, seals, and the majestic polar bear. Heading south, darker nights create a high possibility of seeing the northern lights (aurora borealis).

Day 7 – 11
East Greenland

This is expedition cruising at its most authentic. The itinerary and exploration opportunities in East Greenland are dependent on weather and sea ice conditions. Again, you can be sure that your experienced captain and expedition leader will take advantage of every opportunity to experience excellent wildlife viewing, discover incredible scenery, and go ashore wherever possible.

The Franz Josef Fjord and Kong Oscar Fjord systems are part of Northeast Greenland National Park, the world’s largest national park. Scoresby Sund is the largest and longest fjord system in the world. Anticipate exploring these fjord systems to the extent made possible by ever-changing ice conditions.

This whole area contains some of the Arctic’s most impressive scenery. Deep fjords and narrow channels, flanked by ice-clad peaks up to 1.2-miles high, reach far into the mountainous heart of Greenland. Tidewater glaciers create colossal icebergs that float with wind and tide throughout the fjord system. On shore, fields of multicolored tundra are home to musk oxen and Arctic hare. The landscape—vast, open, and seemingly untouched since the beginning of time—is a hiker's paradise. Throughout this area find ancient Thule archeological sites, historical trappers’ huts, and modern Inuit hunters’ cabins.

The Inuit village of Ittoqqortoormiit is the only permanent settlement in the region. The community boasts an excellent museum, a gift shop, a post office, an abundance of Greenlandic sled dogs, and, of course, the opportunity to meet Inuit people.

Your days are filled with memorable excursions, educational presentations, and enough stunning scenery to fill your camera and overwhelm your emotions. Each night brings new possibilities for incredible displays of aurora borealis. This is the perfect time of year and one of the world’s best places to experience this otherworldly celestial phenomenon (if conditions allow).

Day 12
Denmark Strait

Cross the Denmark Strait toward Iceland, crossing the Arctic Circle on the way. Presentations and workshops, as well as a range of onboard recreation facilities, ensure that this day at sea is not idly spent. Seabird viewing and whale sightings can be enjoyed from panoramic open decks as well as exterior stateroom windows and balconies.

Day 13
Snæfellsnes or Westfjords, Iceland

8/25/2020: The famous Snæfellsjökull volcano and picturesque Kirkjufell mountain are dominant features in the impressive landscape of the Snæfellsnes peninsula. A rich cultural and literary history and the success of fishermen and merchants are evident in local fishing villages.

8/25/2021: Your last expedition day is spent in the beautiful Vestfirðir (Westfjords) of Iceland. This remote and sparsely populated region of crenulated coastlines, voluminous waterfalls, and rugged mountains sees only 10% of Iceland’s visitors. Deep fjords are home to whales while estuaries abound with seals and birdlife.

Day 14
Reykjavik, Iceland / Disembark

After breakfast, say farewell in Reykjavík, the capital of Iceland and ending point of your expedition. A transfer to the airport or city center is provided.


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.

Bilingual Departure:

Mandatory Travel Insurance:

All guests are required to carry adequate travel insurance that must contain medical, evacuation and repatriation coverage. Passengers must ensure that their purchased insurance includes cruise travel in the polar regions, and has evacuation and repatriation coverage of no less than $200,000 per person. Proof of coverage is required prior to embarkation. ExpeditionTrips strongly recommends at least $200,000 Emergency Medical/Evacuation coverage which includes coverage for cancellation, trip disruption, baggage and personal property. ExpeditionTrips can assist U.S. residents with travel protection options. Other conditions may apply based on pre-existing conditions.

Pre-booking required; space is limited. Weather permitting, experience the thrill and tranquility of sea kayaking in the polar regions as part of a guided paddling group. Participants must be at least 16 years old at the time of their voyage, in good health with appropriate physical fitness, and have previous kayaking experience. Children who are 16 to 18 years of age at the time of their voyage are allowed to participate if they are accompanied and supervised at all times by a parent or guardian.

Photography Program: Included
Learn and practice your photography skills alongside an experienced professional. An expert photographer will be available to answer your questions and give advice, both in the form of onboard lectures and workshops on shore. Explore the key elements of photography in a fun and relaxed setting with plenty of opportunities for questions and feedback. Learn how to see light in a new way and experiment with the techniques of composition and framing.


One night pre-voyage hotel in Longyearbyen; group transfer airport/hotel on day prior to embarkation; group transfer to the ship on embarkation day; group transfer to airport or central location upon disembarkation; shipboard accommodations; welcome and farewell cocktails on board ship; leadership throughout the voyage by experienced Expedition Leader and Expedition Team; scheduled landings/excursions (subject to weather and ice conditions); Wi-Fi on board ship; digital voyage log; photography program; gear to keep (wind- and water-resistant parka); gear on loan (rubber boots); all meals onboard the ship; 24-hour coffee/tea station on board ship; all port fees. Inclusions subject to change without notice.

Not Included:
Airfare; transfers to/from hotel if arriving prior to Day 1 of the program; visa and passport fees; emergency evacuation insurance to a minimum benefit of $200,000 (required); luggage and trip cancellation insurance (highly recommended); excess baggage charges; soft drinks and alcoholic beverages other than those mentioned as included; kayaking; personal expenses such as laundry and telecommunications charges; gratuities; pre- or post-cruise travel expenses; fuel surcharge may apply.

PHOTOS: © Poseidon Expeditions

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