In the Wake of Thor Heyerdahl - Westbound

Casablanca, Morocco - Fortaleza, Brazil

Follow in the footsteps of famous Norwegian adventurer Thor Heyerdahl, as you join us for an epic and exotic expedition across the Atlantic Ocean. From Casablanca, Morocco, we embark on our 17-day crossing as we head out towards the Canary Islands and Cape Verde, before venturing into open water to the Brazilian rainforest - the perfect voyage to discover your inner explorer.

  • Cross the Atlantic Ocean by ship like a true explorer
  • Engage in intriguing on board lectures by our Expedition Team
  • Participate in excursions to cities, cultural and historical places
  • Embrace an ecology-themed expedition


Thor Heyerdahl was a Norwegian adventurer and ethnographer. He did several expeditions to demonstrate that ancient people could have made long sea voyages, creating contacts between separate cultures. The most famous was the Kon-Tiki expedition. On the RA II expedition he sailed on a vessel made of Papyrus from Morocco to Barbados, demonstrating that mariners could have done trans-Atlantic voyages by sailing with the Canary Current.

Steady winds

Sailing in Heyerdahl's wake, we start in the "white city" Casablanca, heading for our first stop, Agadir. This is a city where sandy beaches meet Moroccan street life. Heading west into the Atlantic, we stop at the Spanish island of Lanzarote, a UNESCO biosphere reserve with an extraordinary geology of 300 volcanic cones. Next, we spend a couple of days on open sea before arriving in Cape Verde, a windsurfer's paradise with its steady winds. Here you can enjoy kilometres of beaches and hot sand under your feet, before our journey continues with a five-day crossing to America. 

Oceans of time

This stretch gives you the opportunity to participate in lectures and a range of activities on board. There’s time to slow down and experience the sense of peace that an ocean crossing brings with it. There’s just you, the ocean - and of course your fellow travellers, some of whom you’ll certainly get to know better. 

Into the rainforest

Reaching the South American continent, we make soft landing in Belem, Brazil, with its cafés, bars and mango tree parks. Belem is also a nice starting point for excursions into the surrounding wilderness. We then sail down the Brazilian coast for a few more days, until we reaching our final destination, Fortaleza. 

On sale

Save up to £1500

Explore the world in expert hands together with our experienced expedition teams. They will inspire you with insights on the local landscapes, culture and wildlife, as well as accompany you on adventures ashore in these dramatic destinations. Up to £1500 discount included per person on selected voyages. Book before 28 February 2017.

Single without supplement

Embark on a select Explorer sailing departing in 2017 and pay no single supplement if you are travelling alone. Offer is valid on departures along the tropical shores of Brazil and across the Atlantic Ocean. Book before 31 March 2017.

Your holiday price includes: 

  • Hurtigruten Expedition Voyage in cabin grade of your choice on a full board basis
  • Wind- and water-resistant jacket
  • Landings and activities on board and ashore
  • Professional English-speaking Expedition Team that gives lectures as well as accompany landings and activities
  • Free tea and coffee

Not included: 

  • International Flights
  • Travel Insurance
  • Luggage handling
  • Optional Excursions and Gratuities


  • Prices are in GBP per person
  • All planned landings are subject to weather and ice conditions
  • All itineraries are subject to change
  • Medical questionnaire mandatory

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The itinerary

Trail the history of piracy and explore the rainforest ecology on a multi-continent expedition across the Atlantic.

23 September 2017

Departure port Casablanca, Morocco
Day 1
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Photo: saiko3p / Shutterstock Photo

The White City

Location: Casablanca

Casablanca was an old pirate lair back in the days, but today it is an exotic mix of old and new. We recommend you explore the city before departure. Stay on deck as we sail out from the “White City” to enjoy the view of the town and the harbour life with small, open and colourful wooden boats next to fishing vessels and huge ocean liners. See the famous landmark, the Hassan II Mosque in the sunset before you go to your first dinner on board MS Midnatsol. 

Day 2
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Photo: Ribiere / Shutterstock Photo

Moroccan street life

Location: Agadir, Morocco

When we arrive in Agadir we recommend you spend some hours on the beach or walk 200 meters into the city: Suddenly you are in the middle of Moroccan street life. The city was destroyed in an earthquake back in 1960, and the old Kasbah (citadel) no longer has its crenellated ramparts.

Nevertheless, this elevated site has a complete view of the bay, the port and the new town and is an enchanting sight at sundown. Slightly to the south of the city center, the new Medina is a place to be discovered. It was reconstructed from the 1990s onwards by Italian architect Coco Polizzi. It is an original and bold success, where the Moroccan soul still survives. The jewellery souk and the Moorish café are more than worth the detour.

Day 3
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Photo: Tomasz Czajkowski / Shutterstock Photo

Venice of the Atlantic

Location: Arrecife, Lanzarote (Spain)

A UNESCO biosphere reserve, Lanzarote is an intriguing island with an extraordinary geology of 300 volcanic cones. Explore the city, rest under the palm trees at the beaches or visit the Lagoon in the centre of Arrecife.

With its small white houses and the little colourful fishing boats it is called the “Venice of the Atlantic”. If you are interested in Modern Art the International Museum of Modern Art in the old military fortress “Castillo de San José” is a must.

Days 4-5
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Photo: Samuel Borges Photography / Shutterstock Photo

Taking the Canary Current

Location: North Atlantic Gyre

During the next two days we will sail with the Canary Current on our way to Cape Verde. The current is part of the North Atlantic Gyre. This is where the deep, cold and nutrient-rich water meets more shallow and warm waters, making this part of the ocean a remarkable fishing ground that is also teeming with marine mammals and sea birds.

Enjoy life on deck or join the expedition team for interesting lectures on the Cape Verde Islands, our next destination.

Day 6
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Photo: Frank Bach / Shutterstock Photo

Creole culture

Location: Mindelo, Cape Verde

Mindelo is a very busy town and full of life. The inhabitants of the Cape Verde evolved their own Creole culture and language influenced by people from Europe, Africa and South America. Do not miss the famous market place in Mindelo and submerge into the active life of a totally different culture. The old town is also an interesting experience and windsurfers will love the beaches here.

Day 7
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Photo: Samuel Borges Photography / Shutterstock Photo

Experience colonial charm

Location: Praia, Cape Verde

Praia is the capital of Cape Verde. Not far from Praia you find the tiny Cidade da Ribeira Grande de Santiago (Cidade Velha) the former capital of Santiago. The Portuguese founded it in 1461. Today it is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, with an old fortress, “Fortaleza Real de Sao Felipe”, the extraordinary restored “Rua Banana” and the oldest colonial church in the region. Enjoy a day of snorkelling or take a walk along the beach to experience the hectic life here.

Days 8-12
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Photo: S. Borisov / Shutterstock Photo

Ocean breezes

Location: Crossing the Atlantic Ocean

The crossing of the Atlantic Ocean is something that was usual a hundred years ago. Today it is one of life’s greatest adventures.

As we sail the ocean we will fill the days with interesting lectures, great edutainment and on board activities. Enjoy the ocean breeze and views of the endless horizon, with opportunities to read the books you never have time to read.

Note that the ocean is not only blue. The colour will change with the evolving sunlight and the microorganisms in the water. Flying fish may join us on our way to Brazil and sea birds like Masked Boobies become a special attraction.

Day 13-14
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Photo: Pedarailhos / Shutterstock Photo

The banks of Belém

Location: Belém, Brazil

After a few days in a Zen state our arrival in Belém, Brazil can be a rude transition. But don’t worry; we spend two days here so you can roam the streets and parks shaded by mango trees. The abundance of these trees means that the megacity is also known as "cidade das mangueiras” or the city of the Mango trees.

Belém lies at the bank of the river Para that belongs to the incredible widely ramified river system in the Amazon basin. We will cruise through the Baia de Maraio to reach the harbour of Belem situated at 1° 27’S, nearly on the Equator. Amazonia is affected by the tropical climate of the South American equatorial region, and is home to an impressive species-rich evergreen tropic rainforest.

Join our outings to nearby areas for wilderness adventures, where you also will learn more about the tropical nature of Amazonia. Nightlife here tends to be of intellectual sort: art-house theatres, small music venues and heady cafe-bars.

Days 15-16
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Photo: Gustavo Frazao / Shutterstock Photo

Blessed with natural beauty

Location: Sailing along the Brazilian Coast

Join the expedition team for more lectures or spend the day on deck relaxing.

As we continue cruising south the ship will be accompanied by sea birds like Boobies and Frigate birds. But also tropical land birds like to get a ride on the ship as we are sailing quite near to the Brazilian coast.

Day 17
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Photo: Alessio Moiola / Shutterstock Photo

Farewell Fortaleza

Location: Fortaleza

As we arrive in Fortaleza, it is time to say goodbye after a fantastic two week expedition. You can also continue the adventure with us, going even further south to Uruguay. 

9 October 2017

Location Fortaleza, Brazil
Your ship Things to see and do


Challenge your inner explorer and experience everything that Transatlantic destinations have to offer with our diverse range of optional excursions.

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