Island Hopping in the North Atlantic

Greenland - Iceland - the Faroe Islands - the Shetland Islands - Norway

Embark on an exclusive expedition to Greenland, Iceland, the Faroe Islands, the Shetland Islands and Norway. The North Atlantic beckons active explorers with the promise of glistening glaciers, spectacular fjords and unique cultural experiences.

  • Learn more about the unique and distinct mentality of the local islanders
  • Relish in one of the most diverse expeditions
  • Take part in exciting excursions throughout the expedition
  • Engage in fascinating lectures on popular topics from our Expedition Team

Overview

This expedition takes you to Greenland, the biggest island in the Arctic, the mythical Iceland and the smaller Faroe and Shetland Islands. This is an adventure that cannot be compared to anything else in the Northern Hemisphere.

Explore Greenland's arctic wilderness

Greenland is the largest island on the planet and its frozen coastline has witnessed the birth of some of nature’s most breathtaking creations. Here, the struggle for survival has engendered mankind with a healthy respect for the environment and we witness the unique interaction of man and nature as we sail through a landscape rich in culture, history and spectacular wildlife, into the northern lands of the midnight sun.

Wild and mythical islands

From Greenland, we sail east to visit Iceland's historical capital, Reykjavik. Then, we cross the North Sea to experience the wild beauty of the Faroe and Shetland Islands. We end this adventure in Bergen, Norway, the so-called 'Gateway to the Fjords'. We can certainly say that this is one of our most diverse expeditions!

On sale

Plant your flag - On board credit offer

Book an expedition to Antarctica, Greenland, Canada, the Amazon or Europe departing in 2017/18 and you will receive up to £500pp on board credit to spend. Make the most of your time sailing exotic shores and put this credit towards any purchase on board - be it a cabin upgrade, excursions, or souvenirs from the gift store. Book before 30 December 2016.

Your holiday price includes

  • Hurtigruten Expedition voyage in cabin grade of your choice on a full board basis
  • Economy flight Copenhagen to Kangerlussuaq
  • Transfer airport to ship in Kangerlussuaq
  • 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

Note 

  • Prices are in GBP per person
  • All planned landings are subject to weather and ice conditions
  • All itineraries are subject to change
  • Rubber boots rental service on board free of charge
Itinerary

The itinerary

This is an expedition where the elements rule, and the weather, wind and ice conditions will determine our schedule. Safety is paramount and the captain will decide the final sailing itinerary during the voyage. Hence, this itinerary is just an indication of what you can experience and why every expedition with Hurtigruten is unique.

20 August 2017

Departure port Copenhagen, Denmark
Day 1
1200x600_Copenhagen_©Heather_Poon_day1.png
Photo: Heather Poon Photo

The adventure begins


Location: Copenhagen / Kangerlussuaq

Your flight from Copenhagen lands in Kangerlussuaq in the evening before departure. Before you embark the ship in the afternoon you spend the day in Kangerlussuaq and surroundings.

In the afternoon there will be a bus transfer to Kangerlussuaq docks, situated about 12 kilometres from Kangerlussuaq. There is no harbour in Kangerlussuaq that can accommodate MS Spitsbergen and therefore embarking the ship requires the use of the ship's PolarCirkel boats. Our Expedition Team will be at your disposal. It is advisable to bring rainproof jackets, trousers and mosquito repellent in your hand luggage to wear during the boat transfer to MS Spitsbergen. We recommend good footwear for that day.

After checking in to your cabin and the mandatory safety drill is executed, we set course towards Disko Bay where the first adventures await.

Days 2-4
1200x600_Qeqertarsuaq_©Mark_McDermott_day2.png
Photo: Mark McDermott Photo

Exploring Northwest Greenland


Location: Qeqertarsuaq, Ilulissat and Sisimut,

Qeqertarsuaq is the only town situated on the old volcanic island of Disko. The area offers amazing Arctic experiences. Join optional excursions such as a tour of the town, kayaking or an ice cruising boat tour. If you appreciate archaeology and history, you should definitely pay a visit to the local museum. Alternatively, you can stroll around the town on your own.

Ilulissat is set in the stunning scenery of the Ilulissat Icefjord. The area was added to the UNESCO World Heritage List in 2004. Just outside the town, at the mouth of the fjord, you can often see enormous icebergs that have run aground. They originate from the Jakobshavn Glacier, one of the most productive glaciers in the Northern Hemisphere. We offer a variety of optional shore excursions such as hikes, historic town walks and a boat tour to the Icefjord.

Sisimiut is the southernmost town on the western coast of Greenland. We offer a variety of optional shore excursions here, including hikes, boat trips and sightseeing, as well as the chance to shop for local handicrafts and enjoy some Greenlandic specialities in a local restaurant.

Day 5
1200x600_Nuuk_©Thomas_Haltner_day5.png
Photo: Thomas Haltner Photo

The oldest town in Greenland


Location: Nuuk

The capital of Greenland houses about 16,000 people and holds the political and social centre of Greenland. Nuuk is the oldest town in Greenland founded by the Danish-Norwegian missionary Hans Egede in 1728. The name Nuuk means peninsula, an accurate description of the city’s location, on the tip of a large peninsula at the mouth of one of the largest and most spectacular fjord systems in the world.

Today the town is a place where old and new traditions meet, from picturesque old buildings in ”Kolonihaven” to the building of the Greenland Home Rule. Being the capital, Nuuk also houses university, a teachers training college, churches and the Greenland National Museum where the mummies from Qilakilsoq are to be found.

Days 6-7
1200x600_Narsaq_©Hurtigruten_day6.png
Photo: Hurtigruten Photo

Exploring Southern Greenland


Location: Narsaq, Qassiarsuk, Hvalsey and Qaqortoq, Greenland

The Viking Eirik Raude settled down here, and named his new land “Greenland”. And southern Greenland lives up to its name; here you find green fields dotted with white sheep, lush vegetable lands and busy farmsteads. This forms a colourful contrast to the icescapes at sea. Towns and settlements are located relatively close together in the southern fjords, which opens for many landing and activity options. While in South Greenland we will attempt to land several places, some of them described below as examples. When conditions allow, excursions, kayaking, hikes or other activities on land and sea may be offered. Participation on any hike requires a good level of fitness, and that you are accustomed to hiking in uneven terrain. Safety is always the first priority and the final sailing schedule will be decided by the ship’s Captain during the voyage. Below we list some of our possible landing sites, the final itinerary will be introduced during daily briefings.

Narsaq

Narsaq is located at the beautiful shores of the Tunulliarfik Fjord, and this area of South Greenland has been inhabited for thousands of years. Today around 1,600 people live in town. Narsaq means "plain" and the name refers to the large, green plain on which the town sits. The glaciers north of the town ensure that the there icebergs around and the fjord is rich in seals, salmon, trout and minke whales. It is a great area for optional activities like kayaking and hiking or simply exploring the town with a town walk.

Qassiarsuk

Qassiarsuk is a small community with a population of 56 people, known for the settlement of the Viking Eirik Raude, Brattahlid. He was banished from Iceland and escaped to the land he called Greenland. Eirik settled in Qassiarsuk because the area was according to him the richest and best site in Greenland when he arrived in 982. In Qassiarsuk, a boat trip and settlement walk are among the optional excursions we arrange for you.

Hvalsey

In Hvalsey you find some of the best preserved ruins from the Norse period; the former ‘Austurbygd’ which was left in 1408 approx 500 years after it was established. Here you find the remains of the church where the last known Viking wedding took place. Landing in Hvalsey is conducted by our Polarcirkel boats. Once ashore you may stroll around and explore ruins and surrounding area by yourself.

Day 8
1200x600_nunap_isua_©Thomas_Mauch_day8.png
Photo: Thomas Mauch Photo

The southern shores


Location: Nunap Isua

Greenland’s southern shores contain some of the most culturally and scenically diverse regions on this giant island. Conditions permitting, we will try to sail through the narrow, 70-mile-long channel Prins Christian Sund, which crosses the southernmost point of Greenland, and enjoy the breathtaking scenery. If the channel is blocked with ice, we will sail around Nunap Isua (Kap Farvel).

Day 9
1200x600_Danmarkehavn_©Martin Johansen_day9.png
Photo: Martin Johansen Photo

Heading east


Location: Denmark Strait

While crossing the Denmark Strait towards Iceland we follow in the wake of the great Norse settlers who left the shores of Iceland and Norway more than 900 years ago. Spend the day relazing or join the variety of lectures by Expedition Team to sum up and give further enlightening to the time spent in Greenland.

Day 10
1200x600_Reykjavik_©Hotel_Reykjavik_centrum_day10.png

The capital of Iceland


Location: Reykjavik, Iceland

Reykjavik was one of the first known Viking settlements and is now the modern capital of Iceland. The surrounding area offers fantastic natural beauty spots; geysers, mountains, glaciers and geothermal bathing. 

Day 11
1200x600_Sea_©Ørjan_Bertelsen_day11.png
Photo: Ørjan Bertelsen Photo

Sailing towards the Faroe Islands


Location: The Arctic Seas

The open water between Iceland and the Faroe Islands awaits us. Historically, sailing these treacherous waters was a challenging and scary undertaking - even for the Vikings. They were famous for going on "Vesterled", a westbound sailing from Norway to the Arctic islands. Now, however, we're going in the opposite direction as we sail east towards the Faroe Islands.

Enjoy a relaxing day at sea with onboard lectures and explore the facilities on our brand new explorer ship, MS Spitsbergen.

Day 12
1200x600_Torshavn_©Leslie_A.Kelly_day12.png
Photo: Leslie A. Kelly Photo

The Volcanic Island


Location: Tórshavn, Faroe Islands

The Faroe Islands are a group of 18 volcanic islands in the middle of the North Atlantic, half way between the Shetland Islands and Iceland. Tórshavn is one of the smallest capital cities in the world, with only 15,000 inhabitants. It was founded in the 10th century, and might very well be the oldest original capital in northern Europe. Since the turn of the 20th century, Tórshavn has grown rapidly, and is now the economic, cultural and administrative centre of the Faroe Islands. The town is a charming blend of old and new with small houses in nearly every colour.

Day 13
1200x600_Lerwick_©Barbara Schoog_day13.png
Photo: Barbara Schoog Photo

Exploring the Shetland Islands


Location: Lerwick, Shetland Islands

Lerwick is the main port in the Shetland Islands, and by far the northernmost town of Scotland. It was founded in the 17th century as a fishing port, and fishing is still the main industry on the island, in addition to the ferry and oil industry. Today, whilst most of Shetland remains isolated, Lerwick is a bustling, cosmopolitan seaport with all the modern services and amenities found on the British mainland. The old waterfront is packed with visiting yachts and working fishing boats. In the surrounding area, you will find some of Shetland's most attractive scenery and an extraordinary concentration of archaeological sites, including two remarkable Iron Age villages and Europe's best-preserved broch, a drystone dwelling dating from this period.

Day 14
1200x600_Bergen_©Hurtigruten_day14.png
Photo: Hurtigruten Photo

Return to civilisation


Location: Bergen

Our arrival in Bergen signals the end of this expedition. However, we recommend that you take the time to explore this charming city before you head home. Stroll through the picturesque streets and enjoy the well-known and famous UNESCO World Heritage site 'Bryggen' (the Wharf) and the fish market. 

2 September 2017

Location Bergen, Norway
Your ship

Our ship sailing this route

Set out on an expedition with MS Spitsbergen, our latest expedition ship - equipped and adapted for sailings in polar waters throughout Arctic regions.

Everything you need to know about a cruise with Hurtigruten

Learn more about what you can experience on board - and cruise with confidence on MS Spitsbergen

Things to see and do

Excursions

Challenge your inner explorer and experience everything the North Atlantic islands have to offer with our diverse range of optional excursions.

Videos

Immerse yourself in the adventures you can experience on a voyage to Greenland

Extend your holiday

Getting you there

Please contact us if you wish to add on return flights and airport transfers to Copenhagen or Bergen.