Norway's Fjords & Arctic Svalbard Cruise

Follow Norway’s fjord-carved coast, from the charming town of Bergen, past the North Cape to the ice and wildness of the Svalbard archipelago, for a perfect balance between the charmingly scenic and the spectacularly wild on this 16-day arctic expedition cruise on the National Geographic Explorer. Explore Tromso and Bear Island on the way to Svalbard in the high arctic, where polar bears prowl and walruses haul out on rocky shores.

Day 1

    Bergen, Norway / Embark

    Arrive in the Hanseatic town of Bergen, the gateway to the fjordlands. Stroll historic Bryggens Wharf, a UNESCO World Heritage site, before embarking your ship, the National Geographic Explorer. (L,D)

    Day 2

      Nordfjord

      Today enter lovely Nordfjord, included on your itinerary since it is less touristed. Spend the morning at the end of the fjord, where you are transported up the Loen Valley via coach through some incredibly beautiful scenes: a turquoise-colored lake on one side and breathtaking mountains all around. A number of relatively flat trails lead along valleys shaped by massive glaciers (more strenuous hikes are also an option). Walk to a tongue of the large Jostedalsl Glacier. This afternoon be sure to get up on deck as your ship sails back out of the fjord amid high peaks. (B,L,D)

      Day 3

        Smola

        Visit the scenic little island of Smola, where the National Geographic Explorer has been specially invited by the locals to make the first-ever ship call. (B,L,D)

        Days 4-5

          Exploring the Fjords of Norway

          The coast of Central Norway is rugged with mountainous islands and steep-walled fjords. The Expedition Leader and Captain discuss with the local Norwegian pilots the many landing possibilities where options are many: Zodiac along vertical rock faces, paddle serenely in a deep fjord surrounded by cascading waterfalls, or venture ashore for a hike with your naturalist staff. There are a number of special places to discover, including Melfjord. This narrow channel is surrounded by high granite cliffs polished smooth by massive glaciers, and is one of the most spectacular spots on your voyage. (B,L,D)

          Day 6

            Lofoten Islands

            The Lofoten Archipelago is an enchanting area of picturesque villages by the sea backed with jagged peaks. By Zodiac, view nesting seabirds: Atlantic puffins, razorbills and guillemots. Later, go ashore on the island of Aa, where cod fishing is still a major part of the economy. Be on deck as your expedition ship cruises into one of the most famous fjords in Norway, the short yet dramatic Trollfjord, and search the cliffs for Norway's mythical beings: trolls. (B,L,D)

            Day 7

              Tysfjorden

              There’s no denying that the Norwegian fjords are beautiful, and on the days to come explore places along the Norwegian coastline that raise the standard of landscape-pulchritude to new heights. National Geographic Explorer enters Tysfjorden, where mile after mile of vertical walls surround and only a few small villages cling to the rocky shores. Zodiac and kayak along steep-walled fjords, and find inspiration in the birch forests and tumbling waterfalls. The unspoiled Hellemobotn cuts nearly to Sweden and has a trail to hike almost to the border. (B,L,D)

              Day 8

                Tromso

                Tromso is known as the “gateway to the Arctic” because so many Arctic expeditions originated here. Visit the Polar Museum and the Arctic Cathedral, where the unique architecture evokes snow and icebergs. (B,L,D)

                Day 9

                  Bear Island

                  Zodiac around mist-shrouded Bear Island, populated by thousands of fulmars, kittiwakes, guillemots and gulls. This is a birdwatcher's paradise. (B,L,D)

                  Days 10-14

                    Exploring Svalbard

                    Svalbard lies north of the Arctic Circle, where the summer midnight sun never sets. In true expedition style, let nature dictate your day-to-day movements here and this, by the way, is one of the great attractions of this expedition. A flexible itinerary and years of experience here allow your expert crew to take the best advantage of ice and weather conditions. With your fully stabilized, ice-class expedition ship, be able to probe deep into the ice where polar bears hunt. Join spotters on the Bridge, scanning the ice and islands for huge walrus, bearded and ringed seals, arctic foxes, reindeer, some of the largest whales on Earth — and polar bears. A sighting brings everyone rushing in excitement to the ship’s bow!

                    Your expert staff gets you out daily. Depending on conditions, you may land on Edgeøya to hike the tundra, abloom with summer wildflowers. You may sail deep into Hornsund, where even first-time kayakers can paddle in a quiet cove surrounded by sparkling bergs. Venture to the stunning Monacobreen glacier, or get close-up views of the iconic creatures of the ice by Zodiac. Back aboard, view underwater video from a ROV taken 1,000 feet below the surface, or spend time on deck with a National Geographic Photographer getting tips in an inspiring landscape. Every day is different, every day an adventure. (B,L,D)

                    Day 15

                      Disembark in Longyearbyen, Spitsbergen / Fly to Oslo, Norway

                      Disembark in Longyearbyen and visit the Svalbard Art Gallery and Museum. Then, proceed to the airport for your charter flight (not included in cruise fare) to Oslo. Check in to the SAS Radisson Blu Airport Hotel for an overnight in Oslo. (B,L)

                      Day 16

                        Oslo / Return Home

                        Following breakfast, check out of your Oslo hotel and connect to your return flights home. (B)
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                        2015-May-20$15,170$15,990$16,820$18,120$20,690$24,150$27,750$19,990$21,020
                        Travelers under the age of 18 save $500 per person.
                        Costs Include:
                        All accommodations aboard ships or in hotels per itinerary or similar, all meals and nonalcoholic beverages aboard ship, meals on land as indicated, air transportation where indicated as included, shore excursions, sightseeing and entrance fees, special access permits, transfers to and from group flights, gratuities (except to ship’s crew), taxes and service charges, services of a ship physician on most voyages, and services of our expedition staff.

                        Not Included:
                        Air transportation (except where shown as included), extensions, passport, visa, immigration fees, scuba diving (where available), meals not indicated, baggage/accident/travel protection plan, items of a personal nature, such as alcoholic beverages, e-mail, and laundry. Gratuities to ship's crew at your discretion.
                        Places
                        Arctic, Europe, Norway, Oslo, Longyearbyen, Hornsund, Monacobreen (Monaco Glacier), Hellemobotn, Trollfjord, Tromso, Bergen, Lofoten Islands, Tysfjorden, Bear Island, Edgeøya, Nordfjord, Melfjord, Smola
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