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Arctic Exploration: A Voyage to Iceland, East Greenland, and Norway

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17 Days
Availability : 03-07-2020
Reykjavik, Iceland

EXPEDITION OVERVIEW

Aboard the National Geographic Endurance, navigate eastern Greenland’s massive fjords split by numerous calving glaciers—an area inaccessible to most other cruising vessels.
Search for polar bears on the sea ice, and glide in a Zodiac or kayak amid a wonderland of glistening icebergs.
Encounter geological treasures, including the world’s northernmost active volcano on Norway’s remote Jan Mayen island, and one of Earth’s youngest islands off the coast of Iceland.
Discover mountainous islands, cascading waterfalls, and tiny hamlets while exploring Norway’s magnificent fjords.

EXPEDITION TEAM

Accompanying each expedition is a diverse team of experts – from naturalists to regional specialists – who will share their knowledge and insights the wildlife, landscape and local culture.

ITINERARY

Embark the new, state-of-the-art National Geographic Endurance for an epic journey from the remote reaches of Iceland to the rugged, ice-sculpted shores of Greenland and the spectacular fjords of Norway. Go ashore in the volcanic Westman Islands, then trace the route of legendary Viking explorer Erik the Red to Greenland’s ice-etched eastern coast, home to the world’s largest fjord system. We’ll chart a course north, seeking out big ice and fascinating Arctic wildlife before cruising to Norway to explore the magical Lofoten islands and fjords that carve deeply into the country’s wild interior.

DAYS 1-2: U.S./REYKJAVÍK, ICELAND

Depart on an overnight flight to Reykjavík, the world’s northernmost capital. Set out to explore the Old Town, including Hallgrímskirkja church. Delve into Norse culture at the National Museum, which features an array of Viking treasures. Later, embark our ship.

Meals Included:Day 2 (Lunch, Dinner)
Accommodations:National Geographic Endurance through Day 16

DAY 3: WESTMAN ISLANDS

Spend the day in the Westman Islands, one of the world’s younger archipelagos, formed by undersea volcanos some 11,000 years ago. In 1973, the isle of Heimaey was threatened by lava flows that nearly closed off the harbor. We’ll visit the Eldfell volcanic crater, where the earth is still hot, and take in views over landscapes engulfed in lava rock. We’ll also spy Surtsey, one of the world’s youngest islands, which was formed by volcanic eruptions between 1963 and 1967.

Meals Included:Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 4: FLATEY ISLAND/LÁTRABJARG

Cruise to Flatey island, a fishing and trading post for centuries, and walk around this charming 18th-century hamlet. Navigate the coast by Zodiac to see where Erik the Red is believed to have set sail around the year 982, bound for Greenland. Sail past the soaring Látrabjarg cliffs, the westernmost point of Iceland and home to teeming populations of bird species, including razorbills and puffins.

Meals Included:Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 5: EXPLORING NORTHWESTERN ICELAND

Get immersed in the stunning scenery of the Westfjords region. Head out on a hike to a remote waterfall, or cruise a Zodiac beneath cliffs teeming with seabirds. Enter Ísafjarðardjúp and anchor at Vigur Island, where we’ll visit an eider farm and view how the down of these ducks is processed.

DAYS 6-10: AT SEA/EXPLORING EAST GREENLAND

With roughly eighty percent of its surface covered in ice, Greenland is a living laboratory for geological forces. After a day at sea, we’ll reach the country’s fjord-laced eastern coast, where mountains rise straight from the sea and glistening glaciers calve massive chunks of off the Greenland ice cap. The region also harbors an array of wildlife, including polar bears, seals, whales, and rich birdlife.

In keeping with the nature of an expedition, we’ll chart our course based on the rhythms of our environment. Our state-of-the-art ship is equipped with the latest satellite imagery, and an ice-strengthened hull that enables us to navigate waters off-limits to other vessels. Set out by kayak or Zodiac to see spectacular iceberg-dotted seascapes from water level, and get a glimpse at the fascinating marine life and geology below the sea via the underwater cameras and remotely operated vehicles (ROVs) deployed by our undersea specialist.

Meals Included:Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner Daily

DAYS 11-12: JAN MAYEN, NORWAY/AT SEA

Today we’ll have the extremely rare opportunity to visit Jan Mayen, a remote Norwegian island with a small military and weather station that holds the settlement’s only residents. The seldom visited isle is presided over by the ice-capped crater of Beerenberg, the world’s northernmost active above ground volcano. Spend the next day at sea, enjoying the ship’s amenities as we cruise toward the Norwegian mainland. Listen to talks given by our naturalists, head to the bridge to watch for whales, or relax in the sauna or library.

Meals Included:Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner Daily

DAY 13: LOFOTEN ISLANDS

The Lofoten archipelago boasts an enchanting landscape of picturesque villages ringed by jagged, granite peaks. Head ashore at Værøy, where fishing is still a major part of the economy; and search for Atlantic puffins, razorbills, and guillemots on a Zodiac cruise. Later, head to the ship deck as we glide through Trollfjorden, one of Norway’s most dramatic fjords.

Meals Included:Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 14: NORDFJORDEN/SVARTISEN

Cruise into little-known Nordfjorden, the gateway to Norway’s glaciers. We’ll anchor at the end of the fjord and travel overland through the Loen Valley. Take in views of jagged peaks and turquoise lakes during our bus ride, then hike through deep, glacially carved valleys to the tongue of the Kjenndal Glacier.

Meals Included:Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAY 15: TYSFJORDEN

This morning, enter the long fjord of Tysfjorden, where only a few small villages cling to the rocky shores. Glide beneath the fjord’s steep walls on Zodiac and kayak excursions; and explore a U-shaped valley whose fjord reaches far inland, ending just a few miles from the border of Sweden.

Meals Included:Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

DAYS 16-17: TROMSØ/OSLO/U.S.

Disembark in Tromsø, known as the “gateway to the Arctic” due to the large number of Arctic expeditions that originated here. Visit the Arctic Cathedral, where the unique architecture evokes icebergs; and peruse the Polar Museum, which showcases the ships, equipment, and seafaring traditions of early Arctic settlers. Later, fly by chartered air to Oslo and spend a night at a hotel near the airport, flying home the next morning.

Meals Included:Day 16 (Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner) / Day 17 (Breakfast)
Accommodations:Radisson Blu Airport Hotel

WHAT TO EXPECT

Your expedition experience can be tailored to the activity level you choose, whether it’s light or moderate or a little of both. Travelers should be in good health, comfortable walking or standing for extended periods of time, and able to get in and out of expedition landing craft. Daily activities may include walking tours, visits to cultural or historic sites, Zodiac cruises, and easy hikes, with options for more physical activities such as longer hikes, kayaking, or biking.

SHIPS & DECK PLANS

Traveling aboard the National Geographic-Lindblad fleet, you’ll enjoy the daily thrill of discovery without sacrificing comfort. Each of our ships provides an inviting home base with superior amenities, personalized service, and a vibrant yet casual onboard atmosphere. Step aboard and you’ll find comfortable cabins, a well-stocked library, and dining rooms serving regionally inspired cuisine with fresh, local ingredients. Expansive decks provide an exceptional vantage point for spotting and photographing wildlife.

Deck Plans & Cabins

Purpose-built for polar navigation, the National Geographic Endurance is an ice-class Polar Code PC5 (Category A) vessel. A patented X-bow® with powerful wave-slicing action provides an extremely smooth ride in even adverse conditions, and also reduces spray on deck for superior observation.

PRICES & DATES

Jul 3-19, 2020

PRICES $17,160 Per Person
SHIP National Geographic Endurance

All trip prices are per person based on double occupancy, are subject to change without notice and do not include airfare. All prices and fares are quoted in U.S. dollars.

WHAT’S INCLUDED

Transfers upon arrival/departure for guests booked on recommended group flights
Accommodation aboard the world-class expedition ships of the National Geographic-Lindblad fleet or a luxury chartered ship
Meals as indicated in the itinerary
Daily activities and excursions as indicated in the itinerary

WHAT’S NOT INCLUDED

Airfare to and from destination, as well as internal airfare where applicable
Trip cancellation insurance or any other travel insurance
Visas