Circumnavigating Iceland - The Land of Elves, Sagas and Volcanoes

Extraordinary and full of surprises, Iceland is an amazing natural and cultural destination. On this circumnavigation, you will encounter teeming wildlife, rich culture and welcoming people. Only Iceland offers surreal lava fields, bubbling hot springs, amazing Viking heritage and unmatched wildlife. Experience it all on our expedition cruise.

  • Explore mystical Iceland – the land of fire and ice
  • Fascinating nature with waterfalls, volcanoes and glaciers side by side
  • A paradise for bird and whale watching
  • Circumnavigation of Iceland
Early booking offer

On 03 December, we released our new expedition cruise program for 2020/21. If you book this voyage before 31 March 2019, you can save £500 per person.

The price you see online already includes the discount.


The itinerary

Hurtigruten offers unique expedition cruises to some of the most remote and pristine waters of the world. As with all expeditions; nature prevails. Weather, and ice and sea conditions, sets the final framework for all Hurtigruten’s operations. Safety and unparalleled guest experiences are at all times our top priorities. All our indicative itineraries are continuously evaluated for adaptions, whether this is due to constraints the elements unexpectedly presents – or exciting possibilities nature and wildlife offer. That is why we call it an expedition.

Departure 25 July & 4 August 2020

Departs from Reykjavik, Iceland

Wilderness and Viking History

Experience the best of Iceland on our 11-day expedition cruise with MS Fram around the island nation. Our extensive voyage brings you to a spellbinding variety of nature, wildlife and settlements.

The Sagaland 

The West region of Iceland offers spectacular views and is the home to thrilling Viking sagas of ancient times, a key part of Iceland mythology. A highlight of the west is the Westfjords, a stunning nature reserve where teeming bird cliffs are abundant.

Lava and Whales

As our Iceland cruise sails north, scout for whales from the deck as the landscape changes to vast lava fields, volcanic mountains and smooth hillsides. Grimsey marks the place where the Arctic Circle touches Iceland, and we will make sure we cross the legendary line before we head south towards the East region of Iceland. 

Eastern Magic

On the east coast, nature changes again.  Now we encounter thick forests, lush farmlands and colourful fishing villages. Whale and other Icelandic wildlife might be spotted as we sail the southern waters towards the unforgettable volcanic islands of the area, while our Expedtion Team entertains you with the colourful stories and sagas of the Vestmannaeyr.   

Join us on this voyage of discovery and adventure and stay a few extra days to discover the many things to do in Reykjavik! 

Day 1: Reykjavik
Harpa concert hall and conference centre, Reykjavík, Iceland
Harpa concert hall and conference centre, Reykjavík, Iceland Photo: Ragnar Th. Sigurdsson Photo

Arriving in Iceland


Many visitors find landing at Keflavik airport enchanting. The hub seems carved out of an arctic desert, with lava stones covered in moss and haunting mountains nearby. But just 45 minutes away, Reykjavík is a charming and vibrant modern city, offering top restaurants, interesting museums and quaint narrow streets.

Day 2: Stykkishólmur

Welcome to Sagaland

Full day

Stykkishólmur has beautiful and well-preserved old houses in the town centre and is surrounded by wonderful scenery.  Enjoy exploring the town´s interesting museums or join optional excursions to the iconic sites of Snæfellsnes Penninsula, such as the Lóndrangar basalt cliffs or the black sandy beaches of Djúpalónssandur.

Day 3: Patreksfjördur


Full day

Patreksfjördur is a charming settlement on the west coast of Iceland with around 660 inhabitants. The picturesque fjord offers scenic hiking trails if conditions allow. Patreksfjördur is also close to the spectacular waterfall of Dynjandi and to Látrabjarg, a renowned site for birdwatching.

Day 4: Northwest Iceland

Northwest Iceland

Exploration Day

Our experienced captain will plan a day exploring the stunning fjords of northwest Iceland.

Conditions will determine the final program and activity for the day. We might visit a small settlement, take you on hikes or launch our kayaks.

Day 5: Djupavik

Remote Ruins and Natural Beauty

Full day

In 1917 Elías Stefánsson settled down in Djupavik  and built a herring salting factory. Today you can still see the remains of the factory as well as only seven houses and a hotel here. We will explore the landing site, and the beautiful natural scenery surrounding it.

Day 6: Akureyri

Northern Centre

Full day

Lively Akureyri is famous for its botanical gardens and pretty traffic lights. This is the most populous community outside Reykjavík, and serves as the centre of trade, culture and services for the north of Iceland. Akureyri is close to many of Iceland’s most renowned natural treasures, such as Lake Mývatn and Goðafoss waterfall. 

Day 7: Grimsey Island & Husavik

Step Across the Arctic Circle

Overnight stay - Full day

We will use our tender boats to reach this green and grassy island. Grimsey is probably best known for its proximity to the Arctic Circle, which cuts across the island. You can have the chance to step across that line, North to South. During the afternoon we sail towards Husavik, where we will arrive in the evening and stay overnight.

Day 8: Husavik & Langanes Peninsula

Whales and Birds

Húsavík is renowned for its whale watching and has several interesting museums, including of course, a Whale Museum. In the evening we will sail past the scenic Laganes Peninsula. 

Day 9: Bakkagerdi

The Land of the Elves

Full day

Bakkagerdi is the main settlement in Borgarfjörður. This area is known for its natural beauty and is `the land of the elves´. Puffin colonies abound in the fjord, making this a popular place for birdwatching. Bakkagerdi is off the typical tourist track, and offers peace, quiet and lovely views.

Day 10: Heimaey

Iceland`s Pompeii

Full day

Heimaey, or “Home Island” welcomes us for our visit.  The harbour has a very narrow entrance, caused by a volcanic eruption in 1973. Most of the island has steep cliffs, is well-vegetated and provides a habitat for countless birds, including the charming puffin.

Day 11: Reykjavik
Interesting architecture in Reykjavik
Interesting architecture in Reykjavik Photo: Karsten Bidstrup Photo

The End of the Adventure

Our voyage of discovery and adventure ends in Reykjavik. If you have the time, we recommend you stay a few extra days to explore fascinating Reykjavik.

Arrival 04 August & 14 August 2020

Location Reykjavik, Iceland
What's included


  • Hurtigruten Expedition Cruise in cabin grade of your choice   


  • A rich program of included activities on all voyages designed to immerse you in the destinations you visit, including ice-cruising and onshore exploration with the Expedition Team  
  • Professional English-speaking Expedition Team - an international handpicked team of highly educated experts of various academic fields with profound knowledge of the region we sail in  
  • Complimentary wind- and water-resistant jacket   
  • Loan of boots, trekking poles, and equipment neededfor optional and included activities  


  • In-depth lectures on science, history, biology, geography, geology or culture that provide context to your voyage and help you understand the destinations you will experience  
  • Explorer Science programme, with educational and Citizen Science activities that let you learn about the sights you’ll see while contributing to research
  • Introduction photo lecture, camera adjustment and tips & tricks, photo and film footage from the voyage shared in an Expedition Logbook
  • Casual opportunities to engage with the Expedition Team and other guests, including a welcome event, daily gatheringsto recap the day and prepare for the day to come
  • Opportunities to dine and interact with the Expedition Team and officers  
  • Destination-focused onboard library  
  • Port presentations providing destination insight
  • A farewell event


  • All meals including beverages (ship beer and wine, sodas and mineral water in all restaurants)
  • Coffee and tea included throughout the day
  • Early riser and afternoon treat offered in addition to breakfast, lunch and dinner 
  • A la carte restaurant (only for suite guests)
  • Gym, hot tubs and panoramic sauna
  • Free Wi-fi on board for all guests. Be aware that we sail in remote areas with limited connection. Streaming is not supported.
  • No gratuities expected   


  • International flights 
  • Optional shore excursions with our local partners  
  • Optional small-group adventures with our Expedition Team such as kayaking, camping, glacier walks, long hikes (availability contingent on weather conditions and safety)  
  • Optional small-group Explorer Photo programme with our Expedition Photographer   
  • Travel insurance  
  • Luggage handling


  • All planned activities are subject to weather and ice conditions
Life on board