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Ring of Brodgar is a unique stone circle in Scotland.

Nordic Passages: Shetlands, Orkney, Faroes, and Iceland

Example 13 Day Cruise aboard National Geographic Orion
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Sail the route of legendary Vikings on a voyage to explore Stone Age sites, a vast icecap, and dynamic coastal Iceland. Discover the seldom-visited Orkney and Faroes and walk through a 500-year-old village and the mysterious standing stones of the Ring of Brodgar. See towering cliffs alive with vast bird colonies, search for whales, and see charismatic puffins. All along your journey meet the welcoming people of the north and learn their ways of life.

Day-by-Day Summary

Day 1 : Bergen, Norway | Embark
Day 2 : At Sea | Orkney Islands, Scotland
Day 3 : Shetland Islands
Day 4 : Vestmanna, Faroe Islands, Denmark
Day 5 : Tórshavn, Faroe Islands
Day 6 : Mykines, Faroe Islands
Day 7 : Djúpivogur, Iceland
Day 8 : At Sea | Grimsey Island
Day 9 : Húsavík | Lake Mývatn
Day 10 : Ísafjördur
Day 11 : Explore The West Coast Of Iceland
Day 12 : Islands of Surtsey & Heimaey, Westman Islands
Day 13 : Reykjavík | Home

Highlights

  • See Iceland’s vast Vatnajökull icecap, third largest in the world
  • Sail under the towering bird cliffs of Noss, full of murres & kittiwakes
  • Discover living geology, from boiling mud pools to spectacular waterfalls
  • Meet welcoming locals who make their lives in these spectacular lands
  • See dramatic cliffs, sea stacks, and stunning Viking relics

Ship

National Geographic Orion

Places Visited

Activities

Trip Type

  • Small Ship

Activity Level

Relaxed

Trip Snapshots

Ring of Brodgar is a unique stone circle in Scotland. Bryggen Street Big blue icebergs at glacier lagoon on Iceland Kittiwakes at Floe Edge Vatnajokull glacier. Largest Icelandic glacier.

Day 1 Bergen, Norway | Embark

Arrive in Bergen, Norway, one of the major cities of the powerful Hanseatic League. The Hansa merchants operated in the historic Bryggens Wharf area, now a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Explore its wooden buildings from the Middle Ages before embarking National Geographic Orion.

Day 2 At Sea | Orkney Islands, Scotland

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Have a relaxing morning at sea. Hear talks from staff, browse in the Library, head to the Wellness Deck for a sauna and massage, or wake up with a cappuccino in the Chart Room. This afternoon the Stone Age sites of Orkney await you. See the standing stones at the Ring of Brodgar and the excavated stone-slab village of Skara Brae—5,000 years old! Next, step into the world of the Vikings at the red sandstone cathedral of St. Magnus, built by the Vikings in 1137. 

Day 3 Shetland Islands

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
This morning your ship glides past the towering bird cliffs of Noss for views of murres and kittiwakes. Pause to photograph Shetland ponies on your way to the Jarlshof archaeological site—with the ruins of 4,000 years of settlement. Weather permitting, at nearby Mousa Island, see a fine example of an Iron Age broch (fortified stone tower). 

Day 4 Vestmanna, Faroe Islands, Denmark

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Today arrive in the easternmost of the Faroe Islands. Though citizens of Denmark, the rugged Faroese are proud of their Viking ancestry, reflected in their ancient language and love of the sea. Your intrepid ship navigates between the towering coasts of Streymoy and Vágar to Vestmanna. Explore northern Streymoy, with its historic settlements and Viking graves. This evening, see a traditional Faroese chain dance.

Day 5 Tórshavn, Faroe Islands

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Your ship ties up alongside the tiny capital of Tórshavn. Beautiful wooden boats bob at anchor in the harbor, their curling stems and sterns proudly proclaiming their Viking ancestry. Explore the town, mingling with the modern-day Vikings. Visit the surprising natural history museum, 12th-century St. Olav’s Church, and the Kirkjubøur archaeological site, a medieval farming and religious center. 

Day 6 Mykines, Faroe Islands

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Zodiacs take you ashore to tranquil Mykines, known for its overwhelming number of puffins. Take a walk to the nesting grounds, where thousands of puffins take off, land and sit in their burrows—seemingly waiting for you to take their photos. Continue to the tiny lighthouse, tethered down with steel cords, an indicator of winter storms. Then stroll through the tiny village with its turf-roofed houses and turf-roofed church. 

Day 7 Djúpivogur, Iceland

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Today arrive in Iceland and see firsthand how the country got its chilly name. From Djúpivogur, explore the vast Vatnajökull icecap, third largest in the world. For a closer look at the ice, take a boat ride through Jökulsárlón, a lagoon strewn with large, sculpted icebergs. 

Day 8 At Sea | Grimsey Island

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Today have a relaxing day at sea to browse the library, hit the gym or the bridge, and to hear presentations preparing you for exciting days ahead. Sail northward to the land of the midnight sun, taking Zodiacs ashore to the tiny island of Grimsey, which lies exactly on the Arctic Circle. Here celebrate being officially in the Arctic, in the company of nesting arctic terns and puffins. 

Day 9 Húsavík | Lake Mývatn

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Watch for whales on your approach to Húsavík, famous for its whale museum. Drive to striking Mývatn, the most geologically active area in Iceland. This is world-class field geology! See the bizarre mud pools at Hverarönd—so hot they actually bubble. Continue through the Krafla geothermal area to the explosion crater at Viti. Meet the ship in Akureyri, ending with an unforgettable sight: Goðafoss, the waterfall of the gods. 

Day 10 Ísafjördur

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Located in the Western Fjords, Ísafjördur is surrounded by water on three sides and is a great place for hiking. Visit a working eiderdown farm, where the farmer shows how the feathers are collected from the incredible numbers of nesting eider ducks here and gives insight into life on this isolated peninsula.

Day 11 Explore The West Coast Of Iceland

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
National Geographic Orion sails past the immense Látrabjarg cliffs, the westernmost point of Iceland and home to a huge population of razorbills. The cliffs are an area famous for egg collecting; the men were tied to ropes and lowered like spiders down onto the ledges. Continue to Flatey Island, a trading post for many centuries, for walks around the charming hamlet that grew here, and take a Zodiac cruise along the coast. 

Day 12 Islands of Surtsey & Heimaey, Westman Islands

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
The Westman Islands were formed by undersea volcanoes between 5,000 and 10,000 years ago and are among the youngest of the world’s archipelagos. In 1963, the world witnessed on film the birth of its newest island, Surtsey—a newly designated UNESCO World Heritage Site—which you can see as the ship cruises past the coast. In 1973, Heimaey was threatened by lava flows that nearly closed off its harbor. Visit the crater, where the earth is still hot, and have amazing views of areas that had been engulfed by lava. 

Day 13 Reykjavík | Home

  • 1 Breakfast
Today complete a near circumnavigation of Iceland, disembarking in Reykjavík, the world’s northernmost capital. Join a guided overview of the old town and visit the famous Blue Lagoon thermal baths, prior to your flight home. Whether you choose to enjoy the surreal bath and spa facilities or just stroll around the fascinating environs, the Blue Lagoon is unforgettable! 

National Geographic Orion

Per person starting at
$13,690
National Geographic Orion's Category 1 Cabin.
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Category 1
Main deck with 1 or 2 portholes
National Geographic Orion's Category 1 Cabin.
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Category 1 Single
Main deck with 1 or 2 portholes
National Geographic Orion's Category 2 Cabin.
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Category 2
Main deck with window
National Geographic Orion's Category 3 Cabin.
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Category 3
Main deck with window
National Geographic Orion's Category 3 Cabin.
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Category 3 Single
Main deck with window
National Geographic Orion's Category 4 Cabin.
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Category 4
Upper and veranda decks with window
National Geographic Orion's Category 5 Cabin.
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Category 5
Upper deck with balcony
National Geographic Orion's Category 6 Cabin.
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Category 6
Veranda deck - suite

Notes

Single supplement varies by itinerary. A solo traveler matching program may be available, but is subject to availability.

Cost Includes:
  • Accommodations
  • Meals indicated
  • Excursions
  • Services of Lindblad Expeditions’ Leader, Naturalist staff and expert guides
  • Use of kayaks
  • Entrance fees
  • All port charges and service taxes
  • Bar tab
  • Gratuities to ship’s crew

Not Included:
  • Immigration fees are not included
  • Air transportation
  • Personal items such as emails, laundry, etc. 

Included

  • 12 Breakfasts, 11 Lunches, 12 Dinners
Payment & Cancellation Policies
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