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SH Vega - 152 Guests

Iceland & Eastern Greenland

Sail from Iceland's wildest corners to Greenland's remote east coast on this spectacular expedition cruise. Experience the wild beauty of Iceland's Westfjords region before sailing across the Denmark Strait to Greenland's rugged east coast. Here we'll explore Scoresbysund's vast fjord networks, gliding through pristine icy waters set against a backdrop of imposing basalt mountain ranges. All the while searching for Arctic hares, muskoxen and if we're very lucky, polar bears. The wind-sheltered fjords offer the perfect refuge for a plethora of wildlife, including vast populations of seabirds. Returning via the secluded beauty of east Iceland, we'll visit charming fishing villages, explore dramatic ice-carved landscapes and experience the aftermath of a relatively recent volcanic eruption. Conclude your cruise in Reykjavik, the perfect place to reflect upon this unforgettable voyage.


 

 

HIGHLIGHTS

  • Explore Iceland’s rarely visited Westfjords region
  • Lookout for an incredible variety of seabirds including Arctic tern, puffins and eiders
  • Visit Ittoqqortoormiit, one of the world’s most remote settlements
  • Glide through the pristine waters of world’s largest fjord network in east Greenland
  • Learn about Heimaey’s dark history and its recent volcanic past

DATES / RATES

Rates are listed per person
Start DateEnd DateFrom EURFrom USD
Aug 14, 2023Aug 26, 20238,748 8,626
Rates are listed per person
Start DateEnd DateFrom EURFrom USD
Aug 14, 2023Aug 26, 20238,748 8,626


ITINERARY

Reykjavik Day 1
In the centre of Iceland’s sprawling capital city, the modern organ-pipe-shaped Hallgrimskirkja church dominates the top of town. Cosy bars, cafes and shops line the surrounding streets heated by geothermal waters. The regenerated harbour is home to a striking modern concert hall. Popular trips include to the Blue Lagoon, a geothermal spa near the village of Grindavik, and the Golden Circle tour taking in Gullfoss Waterfall and the mighty Strokkur geyser in Thingvellir National Park.

Isafjordur & Vigur Island Day 2
Arrive today in the charming, tiny fishing harbour of Ísafjördur. The village’s touristic highlights include the Westfjord Heritage Museum and The Museum House (Old Hospital). Located at the heart of the Westfjords peninsula, it’s a great jumping-off point for exploration so journey by Zodiac to the island of Vigur – the pearl of the Western Fjords. The second-largest island in the fjord, measuring two kilometres by 400 metres, it’s a significant seabird colony, which is home to arctic terns, puffins, black guillemots and eider ducks. As one of only two inhabited islands in the fjord, Vigur is also the site of a single farm, which has been in the same family for generations. During your time on the island, you might see Iceland’s only windmill, the country’s smallest post office and oldest boat, which was built more than 200 years ago and in regular use until relatively recently.

At Sea Day 3
As we cruise to our next destination, spend your day at sea exploring and enjoying the ship’s facilities. You can also spend some time learning about your destination from our knowledgeable onboard experts. Attend an informative lecture, indulge in a relaxing spa treatment, or get in a workout at the onboard gym.

Ittoqqortoormiit Day 4
One of the most remote towns in the world, thick sea ice makes Ittoqqortoormiit inaccessible by ship for nine months of the year. Founded in 1925 by Danish explorer Ejnar Mikkelsen and a group of 80 or so Inuit, the town’s 450 present-day residents are largely self-sufficient. Hunting and fishing at sea are the only ways that this community can survive. Although a small number of residents now also work service industry. Ittoqqortoormiit is also the gateway to the Scoresbysund fjord system; the world’s largest fjord network with an area of just under 40,000 square kilometres.

Scoresbysund Day 5-6
Over the next few days, we’ll explore the vast Scorebysund fjord network. The imposing basalt mountains create a striking backdrop against the brilliant white ice floating in the mirror-like waters. The mountains offer protection from the Arctic winds, providing excellent shelter for an abundance of Greenland’s iconic wildlife. We’ll be hoping to spot muskoxen, Arctic foxes and mountain hares along the frozen shores. Birds also thrive in this delicate ecosystem. With the help of our expedition team, we’ll be looking out for little auks, Atlantic puffins, fulmars, snowy owls, the Greenlandic gyrfalcon and great black-backed gulls. Seals and whales are also common sightings in the fjord waters.

Kong Oscar Fjord Day 7-8
King Oscar Fjord forms the northern border of the Scoresby Sound. This seemingly endless maze of valleys eventually gives way to the open sea. The imposing mountains, deep waters and sparkling ice create the kind of dramatic and emotive landscape that photos just can’t emulate. This other-worldly place is beautiful and imposingly hostile all at once. Whilst cruising through King Oscar Fjord, we’ll observe the fascinating Berzelius Bjerg, a mountain with clear bands of coloured strata – formed millions of years ago when the mountains here were once part of the seabed.

At Sea Day 9
As we cruise to our next destination, spend your day at sea exploring and enjoying the ship’s facilities. You can also spend some time learning about your destination from our knowledgeable onboard experts. Attend an informative lecture, indulge in a relaxing spa treatment, or get in a workout at the onboard gym.

Seydisfjordur Day 10
Regarded as east Island’s cultural hub, brightly painted wooden houses line Seyðisfjörður’s port. With a lively arts scene disproportionate to its small size, Seyðisfjörður has attracted many writers and artists over the years and also hosts an annual summer arts festival. Surrounded by incredible nature, the Skálanes nature reserve is a short distance from the town. The area covered by the reserve is known for its diverse wildlife with over 47 species of bird and over 150 plant species. Reindeer are also seen here, with seals and porpoises frequently spotted along the shores.

Hofn Day 11
Southeast Iceland’s staging post, Höfn is a small town perched on a narrow neck of land, and an ideal base for exploring the nearby Vatnajökull National Park. The town itself is well known for its lobster catch, particularly high-value species such as the Norway Lobster. The town hosts an annual Lobster Festival in celebration of its reputation as Iceland’s Lobster capital. Vatnajökull National Park is Europe’s largest and covers 14% of Iceland. This vast area encompasses massive ice caps, thundering waterfalls, glaciers, canyons, craters and volcanoes. The park’s Jökulsárlón Lagoon is within easy reach of Höfn and is Iceland’s deepest lake. Icebergs float on the surface of the water all year long, offering resting spots for passing seals.

Heimaey Day 12
A small 13-kilometre square island off the south coast of Iceland, Heimaey’s history has been surprisingly eventful. From the escapee 16th century Irish slaves to the reaches of the Ottoman Empire and subsequent pirate invasion, the island was a place of danger and terror until the mid 18th century. Once these events subsided, for 300 years the people of Heimaey assumed that their days of action were a thing of the past. That was until 1973 when residents awoke to a devastating volcanic eruption. Fissures over a kilometre wide snaked through the town, the lava engulfing over 400 homes. Remarkably, only one person is thought to have died as a result of the eruption, with a quick rescue response ensuring that the 5,300 residents were swiftly evacuated to the safety of the mainland. Evidence of this recent geological activity can be seen just about everywhere on Heimaey and is the focus of the fascinating Eldheimar museum.

Reykjavik Day 13
In the centre of Iceland’s sprawling capital city, the modern organ-pipe-shaped Hallgrimskirkja church dominates the top of town. Cosy bars, cafes and shops line the surrounding streets heated by geothermal waters. The regenerated harbour is home to a striking modern concert hall. Popular trips include to the Blue Lagoon, a geothermal spa near the village of Grindavik, and the Golden Circle tour taking in Gullfoss Waterfall and the mighty Strokkur geyser in Thingvellir National Park.

SH Vega (Luxury Expedition, 152-guests)

Making her maiden voyage in April 2022, our 5 star elegant Scandi-design boutique ship offers you an intimate setting from which you will be fully immersed in all the sights and scenery of your voyage.

Our brand new ship has been designed to journey to off the beaten path destinations and remote polar regions in style and comfort. The ship incorporates a PC5 ice-strengthened hull combined with extra-large stabilisers to make your journey as smooth as possible.


(Click image to view Ship details)

WHAT'S INCLUDED

  • Return regional flights to the port of embarkation and/or disembarkation (where specified)
  • Group return transfers from the airport to the cruise port (via our included accommodation where applicable)
  • One night pre-cruise accommodation with breakfast in a 4/5-star hotel or onboard
  • All meals onboard
  • 24-hour room service
  • Coffee, tea, soft drinks and selected alcoholic beverages available 24-hours per day
  • Lecture programmes by our experienced expedition team and guest speakers
  • Standard WiFi
  • Onboard gratuities and port taxes
  • One selected shore excursion/expedition activity per port of call
  • Branded Swan Hellenic expedition parka and use of rubber boots in Polar Regions
  • Itineraries are correct at time of publishing and may be subject to change

 

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DISCLAIMER: Rates are per person and subject to change.