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Walruses huddled together on the ice

From Scotland to Spitsbergen

Dublin to Longyearbyen - Example 12 Day Cruise aboard L'Austral
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Board the L'Austral and set a course northward, have the chance to stop at several of the British Isles. Discover the Hebrides archipelago: Iona, the cradle of Scottish Christianity, Mull and the charming colorful town of Tobermory, the Isle of Skye, a bastion of Gaelic culture. As you sail, reach Kirkwall, capital of the Orkney Islands. Further north, marvel at the mysterious charm of the Lofoten archipelago. To round off your trip, Spitsbergen, an island that is emblematic of the Arctic lands, will reveal itself to you. There explore Hornsund, one of the island’s most beautiful fjords, boasting an impressive glacier front.

Day-by-Day Summary

Day 1 : Dublin | Embark
Day 2 : Iona, Hebrides | Tobermory, Isle of Mull
Day 3 : Sailing along Skye Bridge | Portree, Isle of Skye
Day 4 : Kirkwall, Scotland
Day 5 : Lerwick, Shetland Islands
Day 6 : At Sea
Day 7 : Reine, Lofoten | Leknes, Lofoten
Day 8 : Tromso
Day 9 : Sailing by Bjornoya (Bear Island)
Day 10 : Isbukta, Spitsbergen
Day 11 : Horn Glacier, Spitsbergen
Day 12 : Longyearbyen, Spitsbergen | Disembark | Flight to Paris

Highlights

  • Discover five archipelagos: the Hebrides, Orkney Islands, Shetland Islands, Lofoten Islands and Svalbard.
  • View the basalt grottos in the British Isles
  • Explore fjords, vertiginous cliffs, ice floes, jagged mountains, icebergs
  • See the rich wildlife: multiple species of birds, whales, dolphins, seals

Ship

L'Austral

Places Visited

Activities

Trip Type

  • Small Ship

Activity Level

Relaxed

Trip Snapshots

Walruses huddled together on the ice Colorful homes in Longyearbyen, Svalbard Iona Abbey on the Isle of Iona Homes in Longyearbyen, Svalbard, Norway Bagpiper in Scotland.

Day 1 Dublin | Embark

The Irish capital stretches along the banks of the Liffey to Dublin bay, on the East coast of Ireland. Discover Ireland’s warm conviviality in the pedestrian district of Temple Bar. Its cobbled streets are brimming with fabulous shops, pubs and art centers. Next to Trinity College, famous for its 18th-century library, you can stroll along Grafton Street: in one of its famous tea shops, try a delicious scone and clotted cream served hot and melt-in-the-mouth with jam. Not far from here, the majestic O’Connell bridge leads you to the avenue with the same name, on which Spire, a luminous contemporary sculpture presides.

Day 2 Iona, Hebrides | Tobermory, Isle of Mull

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Of all the islands in the Inner Hebrides, Iona is by far the most conducive to contemplation and meditation. And for good reason... it is here that St Columba landed from Ireland in 563 and undertook to establish Christianity in Scotland. Now an abbey, the islandメs true spiritual center stands where the ancient monastery founded by the Irish missionary was built. Many kings of Scotland, including the legendary Macbeth, are buried in the nearby cemetery. In sunny weather, arriving on the Isle of Iona is a stunningly beautiful experience.

Located at the northernmost tip of the lovely Isle of Mull, Tobermory has to be one of the most beautiful natural seaports on Scotland’s West Coast. Founded in 1788, this ancient fishing village has been converted to a leisure port highly appreciated today for its surroundings and the quiet charm it exudes. You will be won over by the row of many-storied houses on the hillside, illuminating the harbor with their vibrant colors. Although the real spectacle is outdoors, a visit to the interesting Mull Museum dedicated to the local history and the exhibitions at the An Tobar art gallery is well worth the time.

Day 3 Sailing along Skye Bridge | Portree, Isle of Skye

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
The Isle of Skye is the largest in the Inner Hebrides archipelago. Nicknamed the island of the mist, its romantic and magical landscapes have inspired the greatest authors and filmmakers, such as the poet Walter Scott or Virginia Woolf. The almost deserted interior of the island and its coast are a concentration of the most emblematic beauty of the Scottish Highlands: rocky outcrops, basalt columns, hills and wide vales covered in peat bog and heather, lakes, waterfalls, fine sandy coves, and cliffs. You may be lucky enough to see a sea eagle perched on their summits, watching the waves beneath which otters, sea lions, seals, dolphins, and whales may be hiding.

Nestling in the crux of a gorgeous bay, Portree reflects the magnificence of the grandiose Isle of Skye as well as being its main town. Apart from the charm of its colorful houses, the town’s outstanding location on the banks of a loch makes it a very pleasant place to be. From its colorful harbor bustling with local craftsmen’s shops, you can take in a stunning view of the surrounding hills. Before trekking through the wilderness and drinking in the natural beauty of the Isle of Skye, check out some of the beautiful images in the Aros Centre.

Day 4 Kirkwall, Scotland

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Capital of the Orkney archipelago, Kirkwall, which means “church bay”, is an ideal stopover before continuing on to the Northern Isles. Sheltered in a wide bay, the lively town welcomes the visitor with its charming paved alleyways edged by old houses and craft shops. Tankerness House, the oldest homestead in the town, is a must-see landmark. But the true architectural treasure of the aptly named Kirkwall is none other than its remarkable red and gold stone cathedral. And because whiskey is inseparable from Scotland’s identity, stop at the Highland Park Distillery for a highly instructive visit.

Day 5 Lerwick, Shetland Islands

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
The small and charming capital of the Shetland Islands, with its sea in front of old houses and narrow streets, offering travelers its old districts and a warm port atmosphere. Geopark Shetland, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is located in the north. Incredibly well-preserved archaeological sites and ruins prove that the islands’ occupation dates back to the first Neolithic colonies. The Shetland Museum and Archives recounts the Shetlands’ history of heritage and culture: Lerwick’s abundant waters were even fished by the Dutch in the past.

Day 6 At Sea

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
During your day at sea, make the most of the many services and activities on board. Treat yourself to a moment of relaxation in the spa or stay in shape in the fitness center. Depending on the season, let yourself be tempted by the swimming pool or a spot of sunbathing. This day without a port of call will also be an opportunity to enjoy the conferences or shows proposed on board, to do some shopping in the boutique or to meet the photographers in their dedicated space. As for lovers of the open sea, they will be able to visit the ship’s upper deck to admire the spectacle of the waves and perhaps be lucky enough to observe marine species. A truly enchanted interlude, combining comfort, rest and entertainment.

Day 7 Reine, Lofoten | Leknes, Lofoten

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Way beyond the Arctic Circle, Lofoten Islands are truly considered to be in “another world”. A jewel of nature in its most pristine state, this archipelago with its jagged coastline offers you majestic settings of high alpine summits, sandy beaches, green prairies and fjords of a deep blue, where countless bird colonies make their nests. Whether you visit Å, or Nusjford, listed by UNESCO, enjoy authentic and memorable moments.

Day 8 Tromso

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
In the north of the Arctic circle, you’ll discover Tromsø, a secluded town located in the county of Troms. Norwegians call it the “Paris of the north”. You’ll soon see why when you discover its extensive neoclassical architectural heritage. A stunning example is the Arctic cathedral, a major monument whose stylistic purity echoes the outline of the mountains surrounding the town.

Day 9 Sailing by Bjornoya (Bear Island)

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Halfway between Norway and Spitsbergen, you will sail not far from the coastlines of Bjørnøya, the southernmost island of Svalbard. From your ship, observe this isolated piece of land discovered in 1596 by the Dutch navigator Willem Barents, then looking for the Northwest Passage. Following a tough fight between a polar bear and the members of the expedition, he dubbed the place Bear Island. Regularly covered by a thick layer of fog, Bjørnøya shelters a meteorological station built in 1923, which is still in operation. Declared a nature reserve in 2002, the island is above all home to an enormous colony of sea birds: skuas, guillemots, puffins, Tridactyl gulls, petrels, gulls and little auks all coexist here.

Day 10 Isbukta, Spitsbergen

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Nestling on the south-east point of the island of Spitsbergen, this small bay shelters an immense glacier, the Vasil’evbreen, whose front is more than 20 kilometers long. This is an opportunity for an unforgettable Zodiac® outing. If the conditions allow it, you will be able to land directly at the foot of this majestic glacier, so as to discover the moraine and walk on the first section of the glacier. Depending on the ice conditions, you will also perhaps be lucky enough to approch Stellingfjellet, home to one of the largest guillemot colonies on the archipelago.

Day 11 Horn Glacier, Spitsbergen

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Nestling between millennial glaciers and carved mountains, and considered to be “the crown of Arctic Norway”, Spitsbergen is a place that never sees the night. Your ship will take you closer to this fascinating archipelago and, more particularly, the Hornsund fjord. Considered to be Svalbard’s southernmost fjord, it is especially reputed to be its most stunning: at the end of its vast bay, 8 great glaciers slowly make their way down to the sea before giving way to the many icebergs elegantly drifting along its cold and mysterious waters.

Day 12 Longyearbyen, Spitsbergen | Disembark | Flight to Paris

  • 1 Breakfast
Longyearbyen is the capital of the Norwegian Svalbard archipelago, located on Svalbard’s main island, and is the northernmost territorial capital on the planet. With winter temperatures dropping to below 40°C, the landscapes of this mining town are simply breathtaking. The glaciers, the mountains stretching as far as the eye can see and the untouched nature, make you feel like you’re in completely unexplored territory.

After breakfast aboard the L'Austral, disembark at Longyearbyen and transfer to the airport in time for your check-in for your flight to Paris 
 

L'Austral

Per person starting at
$8,110
Superior Stateroom
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Superior Stateroom
8 cabins, 226 sq ft, located on Le Champollion Deck. A/C, king or twin beds, seating area and private bath.
Deluxe Stateroom
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Deluxe Stateroom
28 cabins, 200 sq ft with private balcony. A/C, king or twin beds, seating area, private bath.
Prestige Stateroom
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Prestige Stateroom - Deck 4
200 sq ft with 43 sq ft private balcony. A/C, king or twin beds, seating area, private bath.
Prestige Stateroom
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Prestige Stateroom - Deck 5
200 sq ft with 43 sq ft private balcony. A/C, king or twin beds, seating area, private bath.
Prestige Stateroom
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Prestige Stateroom - Deck 6
200 sq ft with 43 sq ft private balcony. A/C, king or twin beds, seating area, private bath.
Deluxe Suite
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Deluxe Suite
3 suites, 290 sq ft with 54 sq ft private balcony, located on the Le France Deck. A/C, king or twin beds, seating area, desk, minibar, private bath.
Prestige Suite
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Prestige Suite - Deck 5
398 sq ft with 86 sq ft private balcony. A/C, king or twin beds, communicating cabins available. Separate living area, private bath.
Prestige Suite
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Prestige Suite - Deck 6
398 sq ft with 86 sq ft private balcony. A/C, king or twin beds, communicating cabins available. Separate living area, private bath.
Owner's Suite
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Owners Suite
484 sq ft with 97 sq ft private balcony. A/C, king or twin beds, communicating cabins available. Separate living, dining areas, private bath with large tub and shower, minibar, 2 flat screen TVs, DVD, CD, and IPOD, Video on demand, Satellite phone

Notes

Please note:
Fares are based on double occupancy and are capacity controlled. Rates may increase at any time as the ship sells out and subject to change without notice.

*Rates are capacity controlled and are subject to change without notice.

Cruise fares are per person and include the following:
  • All meals while on board the ship 
  • Captain’s welcome cocktail and gala dinner
  • Gratuities to onboard crew, local guides and drivers
  • “Open Bar” (pouring wines, house champagne, alcohol except premium brands...list available upon request)
  • Evening entertainment and events
  • 24h room service (special selection)
  • English-speaking lecturer 
  • Water sports activities (except scuba diving) using the ship’s equipment, when permitted by local authorities and confirmed by ship Master according to safety and sea conditions onsite
  • Highly experienced bilingual (French-English) Expedition team 
  • Park entry fees into protected areas
  • Complimentary boot rental (except for guarantee deposit)
  • Complimentary polar parka for you to keep (no children sizes available)
  • Free and unlimited Wi-Fi (Internet access may be slower or in some situations interrupted, depending on certain geographic locations or other circumstances beyond our control).
Cruise, Flights, and Transfers program rates are per person and include:
  • Flight Longyearbyen/Paris in economy class
  • Meet and greet at the port by local English-speaking representative
  • Transfer to the airport in time for check-in of flight Longyearbyen/Paris
Cruise fares do not include:
  • Any ground services before and/or after the cruise other than the ones mentioned in each “Cruise, Flights & Transfers” package and for which details are available upon request
  • Pre or post cruise programs, overland programs or shore excursions mentioned
  • Visa expenses and/or immigration reciprocity taxes if applicable
  • Luggage handling
  • Optional Spa package to be booked prior to your departure
  • Beverages other than the ones mentioned
  • Laundry services, hair salon, and à la carte Spa treatments
  • Personal expenses, on board medical consultations and drug prescriptions
  • Cancellation/luggage/assistance/repatriation/medical insurance(s)
  • Dives when authorized by local authorities and feasible with ship equipment and Zodiacs®. Rates: €70 per standard dive; €80 per dive when local equipment or staff must be used, €80 for a “discover scuba dive” course, on some cruises a dive package might be on offer. In order to participate to diving sessions, guests must have with them a medical certificate less than 1-year-old and their up to date dive book.
Please Note:

These voyages include activities such as Zodiac® landings (sometimes wet landings), Zodiac® outings, moderate walks, to more active hikes accompanied by your expedition team of naturalist guides. Considering the nature of the programs, a reasonable level of mobility is required to enjoy these expeditions.

Ports of call, visited sites, outings and landings will depend on weather conditions, position of ice, winds and the state of the sea. These can force a change of plans at any time. The Captain and the Expedition Leader may at any time cancel or stop any activity, or even modify the itinerary. The final itinerary will be confirmed by the Captain, who will take into account the touristic quality of the sites and above all, the safety of the passengers. His decision will be based on advice from experts and authorities.
Payment & Cancellation Policies
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This was my first experience with Adventure Life - and I couldn't have been more pleased with the trip. The guides and local staff in both Buenos Aires and Uruguay were terrific - extremely helpful and accommodating. I really enjoyed meeting the friendly staff in Buenos Aires in person (I left my bags with them for the afternoon).
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