Baffin Island & West Greenland Explorer

from £13400
excluding flights *
19 nights Sep

Overview

This in-depth exploration of West Greenland and the Canadian Arctic uncovers tales of legendary polar explorers and remote Inuit communities, as well as offering the chance to see a wealth of wildlife from polar bears and walrus to beluga and narwhal.

Highlights

  • Visit the lonely graves that mark the tragedy of the Franklin Expedition
  • Explore an abandoned RCMP post
  • Cruise through the spectacular Ilulissat Icefjord
  • Step ashore at remote National Historic Sites of Canada
  • Observe seabirds in their thousands, polar bears, seals and walrus
  • Search for belugas, bowheads and the intriguing narwhals

What's Included

  • Return flights from Reykjavik to Kangerlussuaq
  • Shipboard accommodation
  • All breakfasts, lunches & dinners on board
  • Shore landings & Zodiac cruises
  • Experienced Expedition Team
  • Presentations on board
  • Expedition jacket - yours to keep
  • Loan of rubber boots during voyage

Full description

Voyage to some of the most historic sites in the Arctic, gaining a first-hand insight into the conditions faced by ancient cultures, early explorers and traders. Combine polar history with a chance to see how today's Inuit live, all set against a backdrop of icy wilderness and abundant wildlife.

Contact our Arctic specialists now
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Authentic holidays for passionate travellers

Prices & Dates *

Offers

Airfares are quoted separately to the holiday price. When enquiring, our Travel Specialists will provide the best fare possible from your preferred airline / airport.

Prices are per person, based on a twin cabin

Departures Duration Vessel Activities Prices from (pp)
10 Sep 2020 20 days Ocean Adventurer £13,400

Activity Options
Kayaking is available on this voyage

What's Included

  • One-pre & one post-expedition night's accommodation in Reykjavik
  • Return charter flights from Reykjavik to Kangerlussuaq
  • Transfers from hotel to ship, ship to airport and airport to hotel
  • Shipboard accommodation
  • All breakfasts, lunches & dinners on board
  • Tea & coffee available around the clock
  • Selected beers and wines included with dinner only
  • All Zodiac transfers, cruising & shore landings
  • Presentations by the Expedition Team and guest speakers
  • Expedition jacket - yours to keep
  • Loan of rubber boots during voyage
  • All miscellaneous service taxes and port charges
  • 24 hour emergency assistance from our team during your holiday
  • No surcharge guarantee
  • Full financial protection »

Itinerary & Accommodation

Itinerary & Accommodation

Baffin Island & West Greenland Explorer

Day 1: Arrival in Reykjavik

Explore Iceland’s capital on your own before an overnight hotel stay.

Day 2: Flight to Kangerlussuak, Greenland and embarkation

Transfer to the airport and board a private charter flight to Kangerlussuaq, a small town in Sondre Stromfjord, one of the longest fjords in the world. After embarking the ship in the afternoon, enjoy time out on deck, taking in your new surroundings as you set sail on your Arctic expedition.

Day 3: At sea

As you cruise across the Davis Strait, the Expedition Team will prepare you for the adventures ahead. Learn about the history and politics of the Arctic, its’ fascinating wildlife, geology, ecology and climate and the incredible sights you will soon explore. Be sure to keep an eye out for sea birds and whales.

Days 4-6: Exploring Baffin Island, Canada

Baffin Island, the fifth-largest island in the world, was named after the English navigator William Baffin, who ventured to the area in the early 17th century in search of the fabled Northwest Passage. Sailing along the island’s eastern coast, guided by weather and ice conditions, each day and each landing will present a new adventure as you discover towering mountains, deep fjords, colourful tundra and remote Inuit settlements. The Inuit community of Qikiqtarjuaq (which means ‘the big island’ in Inuktitut) is located just north of the Arctic Circle, on Broughton Island. Fondly called ‘Qik’ by locals, the welcoming hamlet offers a superb vantage point of the Davis Strait. The rarely explored Sam Ford Fjord is one of the most isolated places on the planet. Have your camera handy as you cruise along this impressive coastline carved by ancient glaciers, as the towering formations, stacked side by side, are simply majestic.

Day 7: At sea

As you continue north, enjoy a presentation by the on-board experts, sip an icy cocktail in the bar, watch a movie or join your Expedition Team on the bridge as they scan for wildlife.

Days 8-11: Lancaster Sound and Beechey Island

Lancaster Sound, the gateway to the Northwest Passage, is one of the richest marine habitats in the Arctic. With open-water areas staying ice-free all year, it is an important summer feeding area for whales and other marine wildlife. Your days here will be spent exploring several of the Sound’s beautiful bays and inlets, discovering historical sites, enjoying Zodiac cruises and searching for iconic wildlife such as walrus, seals, whales and polar bears. You may even be fortunate enough to spot the elusive narwhal in this area. If conditions permit visit Radstock Bay, the location of one of the most impressive ancient Thule sites (ancestors to the Inuits) in the Arctic. Exploring the well-preserved remains of subterranean houses, including the whale bones used as supports for the dwellings, will give you an understanding of how these pre-Inuit people thrived in the Far North. The ship will attempt to land at Beechey Island, a Canadian National Historic Site named after explorer Frederick William Beechey. The island is the final resting place of members of Sir John Franklin’s 1845 expedition to find the Northwest Passage. The graves, on a desolate rocky beach, were discovered in 1850 by a team searching for signs of the ill-fated expedition. Predominantly covered in glaciers and ice fields, Coburg Island and its surrounding waters comprise the Nirjutiqavvik National Wildlife Area. The island’s steep coastal cliffs are an ideal habitat for hundreds of thousands of nesting seabirds like Brünnich’s guillemots (thick-billed murres), black-legged kittiwakes, northern fulmars and black guillemots.

Day 12: Smith Sound

Before saying goodbye to Canada, you will push as far north as ice and weather allow, exploring both sides of Smith Sound which is an uninhabited passage between Ellesmere Island and Greenland.

Days 13-14: Exploring Northwest Greenland

Your return to Greenland will have you sailing along the remote northwest coast, a land of impressive icebergs and massive glaciers. Qaanaaq, formerly known as Thule, is one of the northernmost towns in the world. Here, local Inuits share their culture and traditions, while the museum sheds more light on life near the top of the world. The ship hopes to explore Melville Bay, a whaling site until the early 1900s. The area of Baffin Bay is a major egress for the Greenland ice cap and is home to spectacular icebergs in all shapes and sizes, making it an ideal spot for Zodiac cruising.

Day 15: At sea

As you continue sailing south along the west coast of Greenland, presentations will prepare you for the next few days of exploration.

Days 16 to 18: Exploring West Greenland

Boasting spectacular glaciers, mountainous landscapes, dramatic fjords and vibrant communities, the west coast of Greenland will leave you breathless. Highlights may include Uummannaq, Itilleq and the impressive Ilulissat Icefjord. Possibly the most picturesque place in Greenland, the traditional Inuit town of Uummannaq (which means ‘heart-like’) takes its name from the red heart-shaped mountain that rises up a staggering 3,840 feet behind it. You will want to be positioned on deck with your camera as your ship approaches the shore to capture the soaring peaks high above the colourful houses dotting the rugged coastline. Another beautiful locale is the Ilulissat Icefjord, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Home to Jakobshavn, one of the most active glaciers in the world, this is a great spot to enjoy a Zodiac excursion past towering icebergs. Venturing ashore in the town of Ilulissat (which means ‘iceberg’) will allow you to visit the icefjord on foot and gaze at this unforgettable river of ice from the rocky shore. Surrounded by sea and mountains, Itilleq (meaning ‘crossing place’) is situated about a mile above the Arctic Circle, in a scenic hollow on a small island.

Day 19: Disembarkation in Kangerlussuaq and flight to Reykjavik

After disembarkation in Kangerlussuaq you will board your charter flight back to Reykjavik. Upon arrival in Reykjavik transfer to your hotel for a final night stay in the city.

Day 20: Depart Reykjavik, Iceland

Today you can make your way home at your leisure or spend time exploring this vibrant city.

Notes

Important Reminder: All voyage itineraries are intended as a guideline only - embracing the unexpected is part of the legacy of expedition travel. Actual routes and landings will be dependent on weather, sea and ice conditions. A degree of flexibility is essential in the polar regions!

Ocean Adventurer

Multi-destination

Grade: Standard

Type: Expedition Ship

An attractive ice-strengthened vessel, the Ocean Adventurer features plenty of outside deck space making this a great choice for a polar adventure.

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