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Explore the top-rated Arctic small ship cruises below.  Adventure Life works with all the top-rated small ship cruise lines visiting Longyearbyen, Reykjavik, Kangerlussuaq, Ilulissat, and Bergen, and we help match you with the perfect small ship and cruise itinerary for your specific tastes and needs. There are countless advantages to exploring on a small ship cruise versus a large cruise ship including avoiding crowds and being able to visit and explore smaller ports and scenic shorelines that large ships simply cannot access. The cost of Arctic small ship cruises start at $1,466 for a trip of 5 to 30 days in 2023. Tell us about your dream Arctic small ship cruise and our team of travel planners will help you make it a reality.  
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Spitsbergen
$11,495
EXPLORE

Spitsbergen Photography: Domain of the Polar Bear

14 Day Itinerary aboard Ultramarine
  • View iconic arctic wildlife
  • Enjoy continuous daylight
  • Cruise in a Zodiac
  • Learn techniques from photographers
Starts / Ends:
Helsinki / Helsinki
Activities:
Adventure Options, Kayaking, Land & Sea Exploration, Small Ship Cruises, Wildlife Viewing
Activity Level:
Easy Active
Cruising along the coast, ice edge and inner fjords of Spitsbergen, you’ll be immersed in the natural wonders of the land of the midnight sun as you pursue your quest to photograph arctic wildlife: the polar bear as it prowls the edges of the pack ice on its perpetual hunt for food; the …
Cruise Details
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Glass-still waters around Spitsbergen
$20,960
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Norway's Fjords and Arctic Svalbard

16 Day Itinerary aboard National Geographic Resolution
  • Explore the rare northern fjords
  • Paddle in a deep fjord
  • Explore Lofoten Islands
  • Visit the famous building in Tromso
Starts / Ends:
Bergen / Oslo
Activities:
Hiking, Kayaking, Small Ship Cruises, Village Visits, Wildlife Viewing
Activity Level:
Relaxed
Board National Geographic Resolution and explore 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. Explore Tromsø and …
Cruise Details
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Colorful sunset over the Scottish Highlands
$12,350
EXPLORE

Norwegian Fjords & Scottish Isles

Edinburgh - Bergen - 9 Day Itinerary aboard National Geographic Resolution
  • Visit Shetland Islands for wildlife
  • Stroll to see the wooden houses
  • Explore Hardangerfjorden
  • Explore the Stone Age sites
Starts / Ends:
Edinburgh / Bergen
Activities:
Archaeological Site Visits, Hiking, Kayaking, Small Ship Cruises, Wildlife Viewing
Activity Level:
Relaxed
On a voyage aboard the new National Geographic Resolution, sail across the North Sea in the wake of legendary explorers and seafarers, traveling from Norway’s breathtaking fjords and snow-dusted mountains to Scotland’s rolling green hills and ancient ruins. Glide beneath the dramatic …
Cruise Details
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$8,290
EXPLORE

Expedition Svalbard

Longyearbyen - Longyearbyen - 11 Day Itinerary aboard M/S Quest
  • Explore eastern Svalbard
  • Search for Arctic wildlife & birds
  • Find 17th-century whaling remnants
  • Cruise spectacular landscapes
Activities:
Small Ship Cruises, Whale Watching, Wildlife Viewing
Activity Level:
Relaxed
Visit Svalbard during the second half of the season on this Arctic expedition cruise. The ice is slowly starting to loosen its grip, which offers good opportunities to explore the seldom-visited eastern parts. During this expedition explore the Arctic archipelago, searching for wildlife such as …
Cruise Details
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Polar bears in the Arctic
$4,000
EXPLORE

North Spitsbergen, In Search of Polar Bear & Pack Ice

8 Day Itinerary aboard MV Hondius
  • Explore North Spitsbergen
  • Visit the Monaco Glacier
  • See polar bears at Hinlopen Strait
  • Visit St. Johns Fjord
Starts / Ends:
Longyearbyen / Longyearbyen
Activities:
Hiking, Small Ship Cruises, Wildlife Viewing
Activity Level:
Relaxed
Start your North Spitsbergen cruise with a trek around historic Longyearben, then join this 8-day expedition to the north of the island to take in the fantastically beautiful landscapes, the thousands of seabirds, and of course the star of the show, the polar bear. This voyage aboard the MV Hondius …
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Kayak quiet waters as you sail to remote polar regions
$18,995
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Best of the Western Arctic: Canada and Greenland

20 Day Itinerary aboard Ultramarine
  • Explore Canadian wildlife sanctuary
  • Visit and learn the Inuit culture
  • Search for iconic arctic wildlife
  • Explore the arctic on a Zodiac
Starts / Ends:
Kangerlussuaq / Kangerlussuaq
Activities:
Kayaking, Small Ship Cruises, Whale Watching, Wildlife Viewing
Activity Level:
Relaxed
Venture far above the Arctic Circle, in a land where the sun never sets and polar bears roam, with Ocean Adventurer. On this 20-day cruise, explore the northerly shores of Canada’s Baffin Island and the western coast of Greenland, searching for the wildlife and visiting the communities that …
Cruise Details
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First views of Baffin Island
$8,995
Savings
EXPLORE

High Arctic Explorer

12 Day Itinerary aboard Ocean Endeavour
  • Visit Beechey Island
  • Hike on Devon Island
  • Enjoy a cultural welcome at Pond
  • Watch Greenland’s glaciers
  • Marvel at the tundra
Starts / Ends:
Resolute Bay / Kangerlussuaq
Activities:
Small Ship Cruises, Wildlife Viewing
Activity Level:
Relaxed
Explore Tallurutiup Imanga, a newly designated marine protected area. Visit the graves of Franklin’s men on Beechey Island. Enjoy an Inuit welcome in Mittimatalik; try your hand at Arctic games. Across Baffin Bay lies the sublime Greenland coast. Illulissat offers cafes, hiking, and …
Cruise Details
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Giant whale jaw in the arctic
$5,400
EXPLORE

Around Spitsbergen

10 Day Itinerary aboard MV Plancius
  • Visit an important research center
  • Discover former whaling settlements
  • Board Zodiacs for shore excursions
  • Encounter a vast array of wildlife
Activities:
Small Ship Cruises, Whale Watching, Wildlife Viewing
Activity Level:
Relaxed
Embark on a 10-day arctic voyage around Spitsbergen, where you have chances to see the King of the Arctic, walrus, reindeer, various bird species, and surprisingly beautiful flora. Aboard the MV Plancius, an ice-strengthened vessel that is ideal for polar exploration,discover the remote shores, …
Cruise Details
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Svalbard, Norway
$8,500
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Svalbard Explorer

10 Day Itinerary aboard Polar Pioneer
  • Visit Svalbard wildlife areas
  • Observe stunning scenery
  • Cruise in Zodiacs to reach shore
  • Learn about the Svalbard area
Starts / Ends:
Longyearbyen / Longyearbyen
Activities:
Small Ship Cruises, Whale Watching, Wildlife Viewing
Activity Level:
Relaxed
Join this 10-day Svalbard expedition cruise to explore the northern wilderness and its beautiful landscapes, wildlife, and glaciers of northwest Spitsbergen, home to an abundance of polar wildlife. The journey takes you up the northern coast of Spitsbergen with the view to opening up as many …
Cruise Details
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Midnight sun light, Ilulissat
$12,995
Savings
EXPLORE

Into the Northwest Passage

17 Day Itinerary aboard Ocean Endeavour
  • Visit ancient sites and villages
  • Meet the stunning Arctic wildlife
  • Experience Inuit culture first hand
  • Explore the Ilulissat Icefjord
Starts / Ends:
Kangerlussuaq / Kugluktuk
Activities:
Hiking, Small Ship Cruises, Village Visits, Whale Watching, Wildlife Viewing
Activity Level:
Relaxed
Sail the heart of the Northwest Passage in comfort aboard the ice-strengthened Ocean Endeavour. On this 17-day journey, experience quaint villages, dramatic fjords, and calving glaciers of Greenland. Then, cross the Davis Strait, and pay respects at the Franklin Expedition graves at Beechey Island. …
Cruise Details
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Midnight sun over Lofoten
$16,025
EXPLORE

Majestic Norwegian Fjords

Tromso to Copenhagen - 12 Day Itinerary aboard Scenic Eclipse
  • View the Lofoten Islands
  • Discover Svartisen Glacier
  • Visit the ‘Town of Roses’
  • Explore the stunning panoramas
Starts / Ends:
Tromso / Copenhagen
Activities:
Small Ship Cruises
Activity Level:
Relaxed
Board the Scenic Eclipse for an amazing voyage through the Lofoten Islands and Norwegian Fjords. Explore highlights of this epic coast, view the culture and the everyday life of people living here. The long, light days in this land of the midnight sun seem to energize both nature and people. …
Cruise Details
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Arctic puffins
$6,695
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Arctic Saga: Exploring Spitsbergen via the Faroes and Jan Mayen

14 Day Itinerary aboard Ocean Adventurer
  • Follow in the footsteps of Norsemen
  • Explore the volcanic and glacier
  • Encounter iconic arctic wildlife
  • Cruise in a Zodiac for exploration
Activities:
Hiking, Photography Seminars, Small Ship Cruises, Whale Watching, Wildlife Viewing
Activity Level:
Relaxed
Travel to some of the most remote islands on the planet, where only a small number of adventurers have ever left their footprints. This 14-day sailing expedition on Ocean Adventurer shows you the region’s rugged beauty and whaling and Viking history, visiting the awe-inspiring and unspoiled …
Cruise Details
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Homes in Longyearbyen, Svalbard, Norway
$3,995
EXPLORE

Spitsbergen Highlights: Expedition in Brief

Helsinki-Longyearbyen - 7 Day Itinerary aboard Ocean Adventurer
  • Enjoy all the adventures
  • Kayak surrounded by icebergs
  • Hike the arctic tundra
  • Look for arctic wildlife
Starts / Ends:
Helsinki / Longyearbyen
Activities:
Adventure Options, Hiking, Kayaking, Small Ship Cruises, Wildlife Viewing
Activity Level:
Relaxed
In a single week cruise through the pack ice up to 80°N along the west coast of Spitsbergen. Spend your days on a constant search for wildlife, exploring as much of the area as possible to optimize the opportunities to spot the most iconic of arctic wildlife, the polar bear. Enhance your …
Cruise Details
0
The blue lagoon in Iceland
$12,280
EXPLORE

A Circumnavigation of Iceland

Reykjavik - Reykjavik - 10 Day Itinerary aboard National Geographic Explorer
  • Meet Iceland’s people & culture
  • Actively explore Iceland's coasts
  • Experience Iceland’s unique geology
  • Travel with an expert team
Starts / Ends:
Reykjavik / Reykjavik
Activities:
Adventure Options, Kayaking, Land & Sea Exploration, Small Ship Cruises, Whale Watching, Wildlife Viewing
Activity Level:
Relaxed
Iceland’s geology in all its manifestations is world-class: glaciers, thundering waterfalls, immense cliffs, geothermal springs, boiling mud pots, and rock and lava-scapes of unearthly beauty. It alone makes a circumnavigation a very compelling idea. But when you add in components like …
Cruise Details
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Zodiac cruising in Spitsbergen
$7,995
EXPLORE

Introduction to Spitsbergen: Fjords, Glaciers, and Wildlife of Svalbard

10 Day Itinerary aboard Ultramarine
  • Cruise in a Zodiac
  • Encounter arctic wildlife
  • Immerse in the Arctic realm
  • Hike the polar desert
Starts / Ends:
Helsinki / Longyearbyen
Activities:
Adventure Options, Hiking, Kayaking, Small Ship Cruises, Whale Watching, Wildlife Viewing
Activity Level:
Relaxed
This fascinating expedition provides a taste of everything Spitsbergen has to offer, starting with its largest settlement, Longyearbyen. The largest island of the Svalbard archipelago is known as the “wildlife capital of the Arctic,” and on this stirring voyage. Geared toward optimum …
Cruise Details
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Beautiful artic mountains at sunset.
$7,995
Savings
EXPLORE

Greenland & Wild Labrador

15 Day Itinerary aboard Ocean Endeavour
  • Cross the Arctic Circle by sea
  • Visit the capital Nuuk
  • Hike Torngat Mtns National Park
  • Explore Torngâsok Cultural Centre
  • Search for polar bears & eagles
  • Set foot on the Wonderstrands
Starts / Ends:
Kangerlussuaq / St. John's
Activities:
Archaeological Site Visits, Hiking, Small Ship Cruises, Whale Watching, Wildlife Viewing
Activity Level:
Relaxed
This extraordinary 15-day sailing showcases staggering geographic diversity. Set out along the western coast of Greenland, calling at Nuuk, one of the world’s northernmost capital cities, and exploring the many fjords for which the area is famed. Across the Davis Strait in Canada, visit the …
Cruise Details
0
A zodiac landing on remote shores
$5,200
EXPLORE

Scoresby Sund - Aurora Borealis, Fly & Sail

12 Day Itinerary aboard Rembrandt van Rijn
  • Cruise among the glaciers
  • Visit an abandoned Inuit settlement
  • Navigate the breathtaking fjords
  • View wildlife on Jameson Land
Activities:
Small Ship Cruises, Whale Watching, Wildlife Viewing
Activity Level:
Relaxed
Board the Rembrandt Van Rijn and sail along the rugged and glaciated Volquart Boons Coast. This 12-day voyage takes you through Scoresby Sund. Further, you land on Danmarkso where there are the remains of an Inuit settlement abandoned around 200 years ago. See musk oxen on Jameson Land and visit …
Cruise Details
0
Bearded seal in Svalbard, Norway
$21,370
EXPLORE

Norway's Fjords and Arctic Svalbard

16 Day Itinerary aboard National Geographic Endurance
  • Explore the rare northern fjords
  • Paddle in a deep fjord
  • Explore Lofoten Islands
  • Visit the famous building in Tromso
Activities:
Hiking, Kayaking, Small Ship Cruises, Village Visits, Wildlife Viewing
Activity Level:
Relaxed
Take National Geographic Endurance in exploring 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. Explore Tromso and Bear …
Cruise Details
0
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