Summary : Experience a 15-day expedition that encompasses the spirit of the Arctic. Explore Northwest Spitsbergen National Park where you'll scout for polar bears, various whale species, Svalbard’s unique subspecies of reindeer, and Arctic foxes. Spend a few days exploring Northeast Greenland National Park which includes portions of Scoresbysund, one of the largest fjord systems in the world. Spectacular geology combined with glacial features creates steep mountains rising directly from the sea. Walk over lush stands of colorful autumn tundra and search for birds or musk oxen grazing nearby. Attempt to follow the pack ice edge to explore the polar seascape and search for seals and sea birds. Keep an eye out for orcas, humpbacks, and minke whales. This journey highlights the contrast and change in the Arctic as you move south, completing your journey in Iceland, "the Land of Fire and Ice." Inuit villages, onboard lectures by knowledgeable guides, unique wildlife, and remote destinations are some of the highlights on this unforgettable adventure.
Activities : Birding, Culture, Hiking, Triple/Quad Cabins
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Embark the Expedition in the afternoon and depart Longyearbyen in the late afternoon. Arrival transfer included.
Taking advantage of local ice and weather conditions, explore the Northwest Spitsbergen National Park, one of those rare places on Earth blessed with both awe-inspiring landscape and compelling history.
Over four full days, explore a small portion of the western coast of Spitsbergen. Entering the fall, days get shorter so try to take advantage of all possible sunlight to search for wildlife.
Spend time searching for elusive polar bears as they hunt seals. Search for Svalbard's unique subspecies of reindeer. Although much smaller than their southern relatives, they still carry impressive antlers. Keep a sharp lookout for Arctic foxes.
By not having a set itinerary, the journey takes on an expedition spirit in order to freely take advantage of the best that Svalbard has to offer.
Keep an eye out for the majestic whales which are known to feed here in the summer months. Spot orca, humpback and minke whales, as well as dolphins. Enjoy lectures by expedition staff.
Frigid waters drain from the Arctic Ocean in a southwest current along the coast of Northeast Greenland. Often, drifting pack ice is pushed along the coast. The expedition will attempt to approach and follow the pack ice edge to explore the polar seascape. Keep a lookout for sea mammals like seals and whales and also sea birds such as kittiwakes and fulmars.
Spend a few days exploring the massive fjord system of Northeast Greenland National Park, which includes portions of Scorsby Sund. This is the largest national park in the world, nearly impossible to reach except on expedition ships.
Sail through and land in some of the most spectacular fjord country in the world along the coast of Greenland, while exploring rarely visited glaciers, bays, and inlets. Spectacular geology combined with glacial features create steep mountains raising directly from the sea.
Witness picturesque scenery, wildlife, and other interesting landing sites in this unspoiled wilderness. These intricate fjord systems are everything from wide and unimaginable to narrow and steeply spectacular with some of the best mountain scenery in the world. Walking over lush stands of colorful autumn tundra may lead to opportunities to see musk oxen grazing nearby.
Visit the tiny settlement of Ittoqqortoormiit for a look at how these most northerly people live.
Enjoy the lecture series and watch for whales. Head towards Iceland and the steaming hot springs of Reykjavík. The view is often complemented by soaring fulmars, kittiwakes, gannets, guillemots, and razorbills.
Shortly after breakfast, disembark at the Midbakki Pier–Port of Reykjavik, walking distance from downtown.
For guests departing on disembarkation day, a complimentary transfer will be provided at 8:00 a.m. or at 1:00 p.m. to Keflavik International Airport from the port. Guests who opt to take the 1:00 p.m. transfer may explore the city in the morning and store their luggage at the port until 12:30 p.m. If you are opting for the later transfer, please ensure you are back at the port by 12:30 p.m. to claim your baggage.
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.
Mandatory Travel Insurance:
As a requirement of participation with this shipping company, all passengers must purchase travel insurance with a minimum medical, evacuation, and repatriation coverage of $200,000 and this insurance must cover personal injury and emergency medical expenses. Passengers must be able to provide proof of insurance purchase and adequate coverage as per the required amounts above. Passengers are responsible for advising their insurer of the type of travel, destination(s), and activities included in their booking so that the insurer may provide appropriate coverage. It is the passenger's responsibility to ensure that they have sufficient coverage and comply with the terms of the applicable insurance plans. Other conditions may apply based on pre-existing conditions. ExpeditionTrips strongly recommends that all passengers also purchase comprehensive travel protection that includes cancellation, trip disruption, baggage and personal property. ExpeditionTrips can assist U.S. residents with travel protection options.
Arrival transfer; transfer from meeting point to ship in Longyearbyen; ship/airport transfer on day of disembarkation in Reykjavik; shipboard accommodations; Zodiac excursions; lectures and educational programs; visit to a local community (Greenland); gear to keep (expedition parka); and gear on loan (insulated, waterproof boots supplied for US sizes 4-16); meals aboard the ship; coffee, tea, and water. Subject to change without notice.
Airfare; travel insurance (required); passport and visa fees; gratuities are at your discretion; items of a personal nature including laundry, Wi-Fi; alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages (except coffee, tea, and water); fuel surcharge may apply.
PHOTOS: © Renato Granieri (Magdalena Fjord and Zodiac, Walrus, Glacier Ice, Auks, Zodiac Travelers); © Stu Darnley (Polar Bear); © Corinna Volk (Reindeer, Black-Legged Kittiwakes); © G Adventures