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Unique structures in Russia.

Mysteries of the Far North: Russia's White Sea

Example 16 Day Cruise aboard Island Sky
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Experience the Arctic region of Russia and Norway on this 16-day Russian cruise! Explore the ports of St. Petersburg, Arkhangelsk, Murmansk, and several islands along the way. View the cliffs and wildlife of this remote region from the comfort of the Island Sky.

Day-by-Day Summary

Day 1 : St. Petersburg, Russia
Day 2 : St. Petersburg / Arkhangelsk / Embark Island Sky
Day 3 : Arkhangelsk / Mudiug Island
Day 4 : Solovki Island
Day 5 : Anzerskiy Island
Day 6 : Zayatskiy Island / Kuzova Island
Day 7 : Karelia Region
Day 8 : Kola Peninsula
Days 9-10 : Expedition Stops / Kanin Peninsula
Day 11 : Sem Islands
Day 12 : Murmansk
Day 13 : Kirkenes, Norway
Day 14 : North Cape
Day 15 : Tromso / Oslo
Day 16 : Oslo


Island Sky

Places Visited


Trip Type

  • Small Ship

Activity Level


Trip Snapshots

Unique structures in Russia. Sculpture on the North Cape of Norway. A cluster of multicolored babushka dolls. The Atlantic Puffin sits perched on a rock. A church on Anzersky Island.

Day 1 St. Petersburg, Russia

Arrive in St. Petersburg and transfer to the Hotel Astoria. Spend the day at your leisure by relaxing or exploring this vibrant city.. Gather at the hotel in the evening for a welcome dinner and overnight.

Day 2 St. Petersburg / Arkhangelsk / Embark Island Sky

After breakfast, board a flight to Arkhangelsk, Russia’s first seaport. Upon arrival, enjoy a lunch of traditional Russian foods at a local restaurant. Visit the lively farmers market where a local guide will highlight the culinary heritage of the Russian north. Drive past the city’s architectural landmarks on your way to the Island Sky and overnight.

Day 3 Arkhangelsk / Mudiug Island

Arrive in Arkhangelsk, the first city in Russia to establish trade relations with foreign merchants. Visit the highlights of Arkhangelsk and enjoy lunch on board the ship as the Island Sky cruises down the Dvina River to Mudiug Island. Go ashore to learn about the North Russia Intervention during the early 20th century and visit the former prison camp.

Day 4 Solovki Island

Spend a full day exploring Solovki Island, the main island of the Solovetskiy chain. Visit the magnificent Kremlin, which features eight towers and thick rock walls which surround the St. Nicholas Church. Also visit the Assumption Cathedral, Transfiguration Cathedral, and the museum of the infamous Gulag camp, which was established during the 1920s. Visit inland hermitages and churches, the botanical garden, and weather permitting, board small boats for a cruise along the stone-lined canals.

Day 5 Anzerskiy Island

Sail for the second largest island of the Solovetskiy chain, Anzerskiy. The island is endowed with lovely, unspoiled forests and crystal-clear lakes. Anzerskiy is also the site of an active skete (monastic community), where you can learn about the history of the monastery.

Day 6 Zayatskiy Island / Kuzova Island

Go ashore on Zayatskiy Island to visit prehistoric labyrinths and burial mounds. On Kuzova Island, observe numerous seid, which were stonesstacked in various configurations by the ancient Sami people.

Day 7 Karelia Region

Make several stops to visit the rustic villages of the Karelia region along the rugged western coast of the White Sea. Stroll along pebble beaches and peaceful fishing hamlets of simple wooden houses. Explore the coast by zodiac and witness countless seals and seabirds, including eiders and guillemots.

Day 8 Kola Peninsula

Step ashore the remote Pomor villages of the Kola Peninsula. The Pomors (people of the coast) traveled from the Russian mainland in the east and settled permanently here in the 13th – 14th centuries.

Day 9-10 Expedition Stops / Kanin Peninsula

Wind, sea conditions, and tides determine your course during these two days of expedition cruising. Hope to explore the region by zodiac and visit the subsistence fishing villages which have never before been visited by foreign passenger ships.

Day 11 Sem Islands

Cruise along the northern coast of the remote Kola Peninsula, a wilderness of vast tundra, mountains, spectacular waterfalls, and some of the oldest forests in Europe.

Day 12 Murmansk

Arrive in Murmansk, the world’s largest city north of the Arctic Circle. Take a city tour to view the major cargo port and its impressive fleet of nuclear-powered icebreakers; the Orthodox Church, Savior-on-Waters; a lighthouse with panoramic views of the city; and the Murmansk Museum. Witness the city’s many monuments which commemorate its short but intense history.

Day 13 Kirkenes, Norway

After breakfast, go ashore in Kirkenes. Drive southward into the Pasvik Valley and go for nature walks to observe the valley’s unique birds and plants. Return to the ship for lunch before visiting the scenic settlement of Grense Jakobselv, just across from the Russian border.

Day 14 North Cape

North Cape, commonly referred to as the northernmost point of the European continent, sits on a 1,000-foot-high plateau that rises dramatically from the Barents Sea. Attend historical exhibits and a film about the region are highlights of the impressive edge-of-the-world visitor center. In the afternoon, stay on deck as the ship cruises along the coast of Norway, keeping watch for puffins, kittiwakes, guillemots, razorbills, fulmars, cormorants, Arctic skuas, and majestic white-tailed eagles.

Day 15 Tromso / Oslo

In the morning, disembark in Tromso, known as the 'Gateway to the Arctic,' and take a tour of this charming university city. Enjoy the incredible views from Mount Storsteinen, visit the unique Arctic Cathedral, and explore the Polar Museum. After lunch, board your flight to Oslo and transfer to the hotel for your final overnight.

Day 16 Oslo

In the morning, transfer to the airport for your connecting flight home.

Island Sky

Per person starting at
Island Sky's Category 1 Magellion Deck.
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Category 1
Magellan Deck, Suites #254-262. 215 square feet and have two to four portholes.
Island Sky's Category 2 Columbus Deck.
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Category 2
Columbus Deck, Suites #331-348. 215 square feet and have a large picture window.
Island Sky's Category 3 Marco Polo.
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Category 3
Marco Polo Deck, Suites #416-430. They range between 225 to 240 square feet and feature large picture windows.
Island Sky's Category 4 Marco Polo.
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Category 4
Marco Polo Deck, Suites #414-415. They range between 225 to 240 square feet and feature large picture windows.
Island Sky's Category 5 Erikson Cabin.
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Category 5
Erikson Deck, Suites #505-512. 265 square feet and have patio doors leading to private balconies.
Island Sky's Category 6 Explorer Cabin.
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Category 6
Explorer Deck, Suites #601-604. 312 square feet and also feature private balconies.


This Add-on is available only for our travelers extending or customizing their itinerary.

- Rates are quoted in U.S. dollars and represent costs per person, double occupancy. Request the Twin Share Program where you are matched with a cabin mate of the same gender. Even if a cabin mate is not found for you, no single supplement will be charged.
- Cabins may be available for single occupancy at 1.6 times the double occupancy rate. The supplement for a suite is 2 times the shared rate.
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Kevin M

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The trip was terrific with great planning on your part. Most of the adventures were not mainstream and somewhat off the beaten path which made it especially enjoyable!! We felt taken care of and you all were readily available to respond to questions and issues. I would highly recommend your company and friends have already expressed interest based on our pictures and excitement.
Gale Cantor

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