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Visit Neolithic sites of the Orkney islands

Musical Voyage with Maxim Vengerov & His Friends

Example 12 Day Cruise aboard L'Austral
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Enjoy a unique musical experience on this 12-day cruise from Dublin, Ireland to Tromsø, Norway aboard the luxurious L'Austral. In partnership with Radio Classique, discover the magnificent landscapes of the northern British Isles and the Norwegian coast, while enjoying the onboard presence and performances of artists such as violinist Maxim Vengerov and poet Alain Duault. Along the way, explore ancient ruins and windswept landscapes of the Hebrides, and wander through preserved Neolithic sites in the Shetland Islands. Cruise through stunning fjords in Norway as you venture north toward the Arctic Circle. Immerse yourself in the spectacular natural beauty of the Lofoten Islands, and experience high arctic culture in Tromsø, nicknamed the "Paris of the north." 
Cross the River Liffey while exploring DublinDiscover the restored Iona Abbey, ScotlandIsle of Iona, ScotlandColorful port of BergenScattered houses of TromsoMidnight sun over LofotenFamed Pulpit Rock in NorwayVisit Neolithic sites of the Orkney islands
Highlights
  • Discover the artistic and cultural heritage of Dublin
  • Visit ancient ruins and preserved Neolithic sites in the Hebrides
  • Cruise through stunning fjords along the Norwegian coast
  • Immerse yourself in the stark natural beauty of the Lofoten Islands
Trip Type:
  • Small Ship
Activity Level: Relaxed
0

Full Itinerary

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Day 1: Dublin, Ireland | 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, Scotland

  • 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.

Day 3: Stornoway, Hebrides, Scotland

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Discover Lewis, the largest island of the Hebrides, considered to be the cradle of Gaelic culture. Here, the peat- and heather- covered valleys and lochs stretch on to infinity, and numerous bird colonies have taken up residence in the long, jagged coastlines where. Not far from Stornoway, the island’s main town, built by the Vikings in the 9th century stands one of Scotland’s most prominent prehistoric sites: The Standing Stones of Callanish. Dating back to more than 3,000 years B.C., these imposing stones placed in a cruciform pattern were laid out according to the moon and stars and their main purpose was to keep track of seasonal cycles, as this was essential for farmers at the time.

Day 4: Kirkwall, Orkney Islands, 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 whisky is inseparable from Scotland’s identity, stop at the Highland Park Distillery for a highly instructive visit.

Day 5: Lerwick, Shetland Islands, Scotland

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
The small and charming capital of the Shetland Islands, with its seafront 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 to 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: Bergen, Norway

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Located at the end of Byfjord, Bergen was the capital of Norway in the 12th and 13th Centuries and has preserved some very beautiful monuments from the time when it was home to royalty. Wandering through Bergen’s streets means going back in time, in search of the hidden treasures that have been listed as World Heritage Sites by UNESCO. A veritable open-air museum, Bergen is home to a thriving artistic community of painters, potters, jewelers. The Bergen cable car offers you a splendid panorama over the port and the surrounding fjords. Do not miss the visit to the old quarter with its narrow streets, a testimony of the power of the Hanseatic League that controlled trade in Northern Europe at the end of the Middle Ages.

Day 7: Olden, Norway

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
With its two wooden churches, one red and the other white, plus its breathtaking view of the mouth of the river Oldeelva, Olden looks just like a picture postcard. Located a few kilometers from the Jostedalsbreen park, home to one of the last glacier polar icecaps, this little village is a definite must for exploring the blue languages of the Briksdal or Kjennalen glaciers. Make sure you find some time to visit the Norwegian Glacier Museum. Absolutely amazing. Another gem is lake Lovatn and its turquoise waters inviting you to quiet contemplation.

Day 8: Geiranger, Norway

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
A must-see stopover in Norway, located halfway between Bergen and Trondheim, Geiranger offers the stunning beauty of natural decor, listed as a UNESCO World Heritage site. The splendor of the sheer cliffs, dark rock, and crystalline water are the stars of the show here. The sides of the fjord offer many possibilities for hiking: Eagle’s Road takes you up to a steep stretch offering a gorgeous panoramic view. A visit to Geiranger village will immerse you in the rhythm of life in the little local community.

Day 9: Crossing the Arctic Circle

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Onboard your ship, cross the mythical line of the Arctic Circle. This famous parallel runs at around 66° 33’ latitude north. Often considered the gateway to the Arctic, it is simply the latitude from which it is possible to observe the midnight sun at least once in the year. Once over the Circle, during the summer months, you will therefore be able to sail in permanent daylight and the low light that is so particular to the polar regions. A unique moment, which will doubtless remain one of the highlights of your cruise.

Day 10: Leknes, Lofoten, Norway

  • 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 11: Svolvaer, Lofoten | Sailing in Trollfjorden

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Located on the island of Austvågøy, in the county of Nordland, Svolvær will be your ideal entry point for discovering the Lofoten islands. An important stopover to the north of Norway, fishing is one of the town’s main features. And its specialty is? Cod. A picturesque white Lutherian church rests atop a hillside ridge, overlooking the town's multi-colored houses. Still higher, the “The Solvær Goat” mountain looks over the town from its rocky heights. Topped with two peaks like the horns of an animal, it is one of the region’s must-see natural attractions.

Sailing in Trollfjorden

According to legend, trolls were the guardians of this 2-km long fjord accessible via the Raftsund Strait, between the Vesterålen Archipelago and the Lofoten Islands. Dominated on both sides by vertical rock faces that stand up to 1,000 meters high in parts, Trollfjorden welcomes you in a magical atmosphere that its narrowness helps to create. During this unforgettable journey, you will indeed have the impression that you’re grazing the surrounding mountains and that you’ll never see the end of this marine cul-de-sac. After a delicate U-turn, your ship will finally head back in the opposite direction: this will perhaps be the opportunity to observe, for want of trolls, seals, and eagles, which are often present in this site, unique on earth.

Day 12: Tromsø, Norway | Disembark

  • 1 Breakfast
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.

Disembark after breakfast and continue your independent travels or begin your journey home. 

Ship/Hotel

L'Austral

Enjoy a gourmet meal at the Gastronomic Restaurant.
Stunning views from the bar and lounge
Relax on the sun deck.

Dates & Prices

My Preferred Start Date

Per person starting at
$9,040
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

Cruise fares are per person and include the following:
  • All meals while onboard the ship 
  • Captain’s welcome cocktail and gala dinner
  • Gratuities to the onboard crew, local guides, and drivers
  • “Open Bar” (pouring wines, house champagne, alcohol except for 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 the ship Master according to safety and sea conditions onsite
  • Highly experienced bilingual (French-English) Expedition team 
  • Park entry fees into protected areas
  • 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 fares do not include:
  • Any ground services before and/or after the cruise other than the ones mentioned
  • 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)

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Everything was amazing! The planning with Adventure Life went smoothly. The actual trip was fantastic! One of the best trips I have experienced. The cruise staff members were knowledgeable and attentive. I will be writing more about this on the blog!
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