Ultimate Arctic Expedition 2020
July 25, 2020- August 16, 2020
Iceland and Lofoten
August 14-28 2020
Voyage: 18 Days
Triple Port Hole-$11,690
Twin No Port Hole-$12,790
Twin Port Hole-$13,690
Iceland and Lofoten Add on-$5390
Norway- Greenland- Iceland
Highlights: Polar bears, Walrus, Bearded Seals, Reindeer, Musk Ox, Arctic Fox, Beluga, Fin, Minke Whales, Prolific birdlife. Glaciers, Fjords, Iceburgs, Aurora Borealis, Inuit Settlements.
Depart US (SFO is the best departure point) Arrive Oslo next day
Arrive in Oslo, transfer to Airport Hotel
Depart Oslo (OSL) 10:00 arrive in Longyearbyen (LYR) 12:50. Check into Svalbard Hotel & Lodge or similar. Afternoon to explore Longyearbyen before dinner and great nights rest.
In the mid afternoon we will depart on the Rembrandt Van Riji. Setting sail for Trygghammna, here are the remains of a 17th century English whaling station and an 18th century Pomor hunting station which we will visit the next morning.
From Trygghamna we walk to Alkhornet, a large seabird cliff, where birds are prospecting their breeding places.
Below the cliff is a den of arctic fox, and reindeer graze on the lush vegetation. In Forlandsundet we visit a famous haul out spot for Walrus at Poolepynten or at Sarstangen (if sea conditions allow).
Day 6 and 7
Today we sail into Fuglefjorden with views on Svitijodbreen and Birgerbukta, with breeding places for Great Skuas and good change of spotting polar bears! Raudfjord on the North coast of Spitsbergen is a beautiful fjord with spectacular glaciers. Its also a great area to see ringed and geared seals, beluga whales, various sea birds and polar bears.
If sea-ice conditions allow, we may land on at the northern-side of Reindrysflya, the largest tundra area of Spitsbergen. The vast undulated plain is a good grazing area for reindeer and several species of waders also breed here. The area's lakes offer good chance of spotting red-throated diver and king eider.
We sail into Liefdefjorden and look Worsleyneset where King Eiders and Grey Phalaropes nest. Chances that fjord-ice is blocking our way to the front of Monacobreen and to the warm springs in Bockfjord are there, but the life along the edge of the fjord ice is spectacular (chances for bearded seals, polar bears, foraging seabirds)
Day 10,11, and 12
At sea on our way to Greenland. we may see the edge of the East Greenland sea-ice. We keep watch for whales, and also for migrating seabirds.
If we have experienced fair winds we will attempt to sail into Foster But, making our first landing at Myggebugten in the late afternoon or evening. Possible sightings of muskox are possible.
We sail through Kaiser Franz Joseph Fjord, a magnificent fjord with towering mountains on both sides, its inner reaches choked with huge icebergs. In the evening we will reach the incredibble Teufelschloss. This prominent mountain is part of the so-called Eleonora Bay super group: Sedimentary rocks which was created between 950-610 million years ago to a depth of 16km! The scenery is dominated by this unique geology during the next days.
We will land at Blomster But to view the beautiful geological formations. Arctic hare are usually seen here, as well as musk ox! Lots of great photography opportunities!
Today we try to land in Renbugten in search for Musk Ox and arctic hare. At lunch time we will head eastwards and into the Arctic Sound and enjoy the views of the ancient sedimentary rocks and witness what place tectonics have done to the once horizontal layers.
We head into King Oscars Fjord and aim to make landfall in the afternoon near Mendander Oer. Another spectacular place offering good walking opportunities and chance of large land mammals.
Day at sea. We will try to get to Scoresbysund, the largest fjord system in the World.
At Danmark we explore the remains of an Inuit settlement abandoned around 200 years ago. In the afternoon we set sail for along the east side of Milne Land, with numerous huge icebergs all around.
We land ar Ittoqqortoormiit, the largest settlement in Scoresby Sound with about 250 inhabitants. We will also visit some local sled dogs.
In the morning we land on the south coast of Jameson Land near Kap Stewart at a lagoon, an area with waders and geese collect for the autumn migration. If weather permits we will try to photograph the northern lights.
Our final landing at the airfield on Constable Pynt, where after breakfast we disembark around 9:00 and board an early morning charter flight to Reyjavik Iceland.
Once we arrive in Iceland, you will need an overnight hotel in Reykjavik before flying home or continue on our optional 6-night tour of Iceland. In the interim, all flight times to and from Oslo or Reykajavik are very preliminary. Final advice on best airlines and routes will be out late 2019.
Day 23: Depart Reyjavik (KEF) 7:30 arrive USA (SFO)