The Northwest Passage - In the Wake of Great Explorers (Itinerary 2)

Be among the few to sail in the wake of great explorers as we attempt a journey through the legendary Northwest Passage. Experience the raw and daunting beauty of the Arctic on this rarely-travelled voyage. Our advanced expedition ship is one of the few capable of navigating the Passage in premium comfort for a true adventure.

  • Be one of the few to sail out of the Northwest Passage
  • Discover the Ilulissat Icefjord, a UNESCO World Heritage Site
  • Great wildlife spotting opportunities – chance of seeing polar bears
  • Explore some of the most spectacular and unspoilt scenery on Earth
Save £750 per person

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 £750 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, ice and sea conditions set 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 present – or exciting possibilities nature and wildlife offer. That is why we call it an expedition.

Departure 30 August 2020

Departs from Edmonton, Canada

In the Wake of Great Explorers

On this Northwest Passage expedition cruise, we sail in the wake of the great explorers to rediscover the remote beauty of pristine Arctic wilderness. We explore in the tradition of Roald Amundsen, the first man to sail the Northwest Passage.

If the elements allow, we will sail from Cambridge Bay to venture into the archipelago of Nunavut. As we make our way through the icy waters, you will be amazed by the vast expanses of pristine wilderness seen from the deck of MS Fram.

History, Landings and Natural Beauty

We aim to visit several sites with traces of earlier expeditions. We hope to call at some of the world’s northernmost communities, explore legendary inlets and channels, and take you on exciting small boat cruising and landings, and our Expedition Team will take every opportunity to launch kayaks or take you on hikes. Next, we cross the Davis Strait to reach Greenland to discover Inuit settlements and the Ilulissat Icefjord, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Crossing Labrador Sea once more, we head towards Canada to visit colourful villages before the expedition concludes in Halifax.

A True Expedition

Being at the top of the world means sailing among beautiful but challenging ice formations. On this Northwest Passage voyage, like the voyages of the explorers before us, we will go where the ice allows. No matter where we sail or what we will see, we can promise a safe and thrilling expedition. 

Day 1: Edmonton

Canada´s Festival City


Enjoy the lively and colourful city of Edmonton on one of our Pre-programmes before your expedition begins.

Day 2: Edmonton / Cambridge Bay

A Good Fishing Place


After breakfast, you will be transferred to the airport for your flight to Cambridge Bay. In Inuinnaqtun, Cambridge Bay is called 'Iqaluktuuttiaq', meaning a 'good fishing place', as it is famous for giant char caught in local waters. There is abundant wildlife in the area: seals, geese, muskoxen and caribou. Our expedition with MS Fram starts here.

Day 3-10: Northwest Passage

Heart of the Northwest Passage

We aim to head into the heart of the Northwest Passage. Since the late 15th century, the search for this fabled seaway through the Canadian Arctic was a holy grail for hardy adventurers.

The first recorded voyage was led by John Cabot in 1497. The most famous journey here was James Cook’s failed attempt in 1776, and of course the ill-fated Franklin expedition of 1845. The first to conquer the Passage by ship was Norwegian explorer Roald Amundsen on an expedition that lasted from 1903 to 1906.

Ice conditions vary, so each voyage here is unique. Subject to favourable conditions, we hope to be able to explore some of the following places:

Gjøa Haven honours the Norwegian explorer Roald Amundsen, who wintered here from 1903 on the Gjøa expedition. He called the place 'the finest little harbour in the world.'  He learned a great deal from local Netslik Inuit people about survival and travel in polar regions.

Fort Ross was established in 1937. There are two small huts ashore maintained by the Canadian Coast Guard, and occasionally used by the local Inuit for shelter.

Beechey Island is closely linked to the history of exploration of the Northwest Passage, particularly the voyage led by Sir John Franklin, whose two ships sailed into the passage in 1845, but never returned. It is known that the Franklin Expedition over-wintered here in 1845.

Radstock Bay is dominated by the rock of Caswell Tower. The shoreline here is excellent for short walks to a pre-historic Inuit site. Caswell Tower itself features a challenging hike to the summit for great views.

Dundas Harbour is an abandoned settlement with an old Royal Canadian Mounted Police camp and several archaeological sites from the Thule period. 

Picturesque Pond Inlet, called 'Mittimatalik' in Inuktitut, is a traditional Inuit community on Baffin Island. Pond Inlet is surrounded by mountain ranges, with glaciers, scenic fjords, ice caves, geological hoodoos and drifting icebergs to marvel at.

Throughout the journey, we will sail in pristine straits that support rich wildlife, so we will be on a constant look out for amazing creatures such as polar bears.

Day 11: At sea - Labrador Sea

Crossing the Davis Strait

This strait was named for the English explorer John Davis who searched for a route through the Passage between 1585 and 1587. Davis was the first to draw attention to seal hunting and whaling possibilities in the area, and to show that the Newfoundland cod fisheries extended this far north.

Day 12: Ilulissat, Greenland

Birth of Icebergs

Full day

The stunning scenery of the Ilulissat Icefjord has earned it the designation as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. At the mouth of the fjord, you can often see enormous icebergs that have run aground. These originate from the Jakobshavn Glacier, one of the most productive glaciers in the Northern Hemisphere.

Day 13: Sisimiut

Modern Settlement with Ancient Traditions

Full day

Sisimiut is situated 40 km north of the Arctic Circle and is a modern settlement that maintains ancient traditions. Come ashore to explore the colourful town; visit the small museum, hike in the hills and shop for local handicrafts.

Day 14: Nuuk

Capital of Greenland

Full day

Nuuk is the political and social centre of Greenland and is the oldest town in the nation, founded in 1728. It has a beautiful setting, at the mouth of one of most spectacular fjord systems in the world. This is a place where old and new traditions meet, from picturesque old buildings in ”Kolonihaven” to the modern architecture of the Greenland Home Rule structure.

Day 15: Kvanefjord


Half day

Kvanefjord is a 48 km long fjord on the west coast of Greenland. We will spend the day exploring this amazing terrain.

Day 16: At sea - Labrador Sea

Labrador Sea

We leave Greenland to head for open sea. We will cross the southern part of the Labrador Sea, this time sailing towards Newfoundland and Labrador in Canada.

Day 17: Red Bay

Red Bay, Labrador

Half day

Red Bay, on the coast of Labrador, is a classic outpost of Atlantic Canada, a coastal community with a population of less than 200. In 2013, Red Bay Basque Whaling Station was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Wander around the former whaling town and learn about its interesting history.

Day 18: Corner Brook
Charming Corner Brook, Newfoundland
Charming Corner Brook, Newfoundland Photo

Corner Brook

Full day

Corner Brook is located on the west coast of the island of Newfoundland and has approximately 20,000 inhabitants. The area was first surveyed by Captain James Cook in 1767. Explore the charming town centre or enjoy its many walking trails among vibrant autumn leaves.

Day 19: At sea - Gulf of St. Lawrence

Relaxing Day

Enjoy the deep relaxation of a day at sea as the Expedition Team leads a recap of our fantastic voyage.

Day 20: Halifax



The British established Halifax in 1749. Enjoy a stroll up to the Citadel-crowned hill overlooking the historic provincial capital. Halifax today is both hip and historic, and well worth an extra day or two before you head back home.

Arrival 18 September 2020

Location Halifax, Canada
What's included


  • Hurtigruten Expedition Cruise in cabin grade of your choice   
  • One hotel night in Edmonton incl. breakfast
  • Flight from Edmonton to Cambridge Bay in Economy Class
  • Transfer from Hotel to airport in Edmonton and airport to ship in Cambridge Bay


  • rich programme of included activities on all voyages designed to immerse you in the destinations you visit, including small boat 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 needed for 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 such as kayaking with our Expedition Team 
  • Travel insurance
  • Luggage handling 


  • Medical questionnaire mandatory 
  • Visa for Canada (ETA)
    See Entry requirements for more information
  • The voyage is not suitable for wheelchair embarkation (use of tender boats)
Life on board