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Vikings & World War II

Explore Norwegian heritage along the spectacular coast, from Viking settlements to heroes of World War II

Your personal tour guide, esteemed Professor Emeritus of Scandinavian Studies and History from the University of Washington, Dr. Terje Leiren, will escort you along this unforgettable 12-day voyage with insightful lectures and exclusive excursion options.

You will be attended to in comfort aboard Havila’s newest environmentally friendly fleet, experiencing the pristine fjords and picturesque towns only accessible by ship.

On the northbound sailing we will focus on the Vikings, talk about Viking life, their culture, and expansion.

Southbound as we turn to the theme of WWII, there will be a lecture on Norway and the invasion and occupation by the German army, as well as a talk on the sabotage of the Heavy Water plant in Telemark to thwart the Nazi atomic bomb development.

Cruise: Bergen-Kirkenes-Bergen

Dates: September 19th – October 1st 2024


  • The full coastal cruise from Bergen to Kirkenes and back.
  • Visits to 34 ports of call in daytime.
  • Cross the Arctic Circle twice.
  • Sail north of the most northerly point of the European continent.
  • Sail through the Lofoten archipelago.
  • Opportunity to visit four UNESCO World Heritage sites.
  • Opportunity to experience the Northern Lights in winter or
    the midnight sun in summer.

DAY 1: Port: Bergen
The journey starts in Bergen, the capital of western Norway, with the colourful and UNESCO-listed warehouses in Bryggen. Take the funicular railway, Fløibanen, up to one of the lookout points, sample the seafood at the fish market or take a stroll through the narrow streets and along the quays of the lively harbour. Bergen is the gateway to the Norwegian fjords and the start of your coastal adventure.

  • Norway in a nutshell, Bergen
  • Experience Bergen by sailboat, Bergen
  • Sea kayaking in Bergen, Bergen
Day 2: Ports: Florø-Måløy-Torvik-Ålesund-Geiranger*/Hjørundfjorden*-Ålesund-Molde
After the first night on board, you can start your day by waving to the Havila Voyages headquarters just off Torvik. Ålesund, is renowned for its art nouveau architecture with beautiful brick houses and warehouses. In the summer, you can continue to the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Geiranger Fjord, which has steep mountainsides and dramatic waterfalls.

*Geiranger visited 01.06–31.08
*Hjørundfjorden visited 01.09-31.10

  • Art nouveau walk, Ålesund
  • Atlanterhavsparken Aquarium, Ålesund
  • Kayaking in Alesund, Ålesund
  • Hiking at Sukkertoppen, Ålesund
  • Geiranger and Trollstigen, Geiranger*
Day 3: Ports: Kristiansund - Trondheim - Rørvik
It is morning when we dock in the historic city of Trondheim, which was founded over a thousand years ago. Nidaros Cathedral is the landmark of the city; it is Norway's national shrine and one of the largest cathedrals in Northern Europe. After our visit here, the voyage continues out into the fjord, into an abundant archipelago and heads for northern Norway.

  • Trondheim and the Nidaros Cathedral, northbound
  • Trondheim and Nidaros by vintage tram
  • Historical city walk in Trondheim
  • City cycling in Trondheim
Day 4: Ports: Brønnøysund - Sandnessjøen - Nesna - Ørnes - Bodø - Stamsund - Svolvær
On this stretch, we mark crossing the Arctic Circle with a ceremony and continue onward into the Arctic regions. It means midnight sun in the summer, while winter days are merely a shade less dark than night-time and, possibly, Northern Lights in the evenings. Nature is powerful with northern Scandinavia's largest glacier, the world's strongest tidal current and encounters with the majestic sea eagle. In the evening, Lofoten's fishing villages, steep mountains and Vikings await.

  • Moose, Svartisen and Saltstraumen, Ørnes
  • Experience Bodø and Saltstraumen,Bodø
  • RIB-safari to Saltstraumen and the sea eagles, Bodø
  • Feast with the Viking chieftain, Stamsund
  • Meet the people of Lofoten, Stamsund
  • Brewery visit and beer tasting, Svolvær
Day 5: Ports: Stokmarknes - Sortland - Risøyhamn - Harstad - Finnsnes - Tromsø - Skjervøy
The voyage continues on through narrow fjords and past wild mountains to Tromsø, a city characterised by hunting and fishing, polar expeditions and courage. Now you have also reached the land of the Sami, Norway's indigenous people. Meeting the Sami and their reindeer while hearing about the Sami culture is a unique experience you will remember.

  • Tromsø – Capital of the Arctic, Tromsø
  • Dog sledding and huskies, Tromsø
  • Visit 300 huskies, Tromsø
  • Reindeer sledding and Sami visit
  • Walking theater in Tromsø
Day 6: Ports: Hammerfest - Havøysund - Honningsvåg - Kjøllefjord - Mehamn - Berlevåg
As far north as you can get - by land and sea. For many, the visit to the North Cape is a high point and a goal for voyages along the Norwegian coast. Up here in the polar landscape, nature is at its harshest and most desolate, but between bare plains and rugged cliffs people cling on and reap nature's bounty. You can also have a taste of the catch. How about some king crab?

  • The North Cape plateau, Honningsvåg
  • North Cape plateau ATV Summer Safari, Honningsvåg
  • North Cape plateau ATV Winter Safari, Honningsvåg
  • King crab experience, Honningsvåg
  • Snowshoeing and ice fishing in the Arctic, Honningsvåg
  • Visiting a Sami family, Kjøllefjord
  • Autumn visit to the Sami, Kjøllefjord
  • Snowmobiling in the Polar Night, Kjøllefjord
Day 7: Ports: Båtsfjord - Vardø - Vadsø - Kirkenes
You are now as far east on your voyage as you can go. The border with Russia is only a few kilometres away, and the road signs in Kirkenes are in Norwegian and Russian. You can go as far as the border on one of our excursions, or how about a visit to the Snowhotel where everything is made of ice and snow?

  • Snowhotel Kirkenes
  • King crab with a snowmobile on the frozen fjord, Kirkenes
  • Dog sledding in the Arctic, Kirkenes
  • Snowmobile safari in the Arctic, Kirkenes
  • The Russian border, Kirkenes
  • King crab fishing in a RIB, Kirkenes
Day 8: Ports: Mehamn - Kjøllefjord - Honningsvåg - Havøysund - Hammerfest - Øksfjord - Skjervøy - Tromsø
The polar landscape changes as we sail towards the west and south again. The great expanses are replaced by steep peaks, and in the evening we sail into Tromsø. You can go to a midnight concert in the Arctic Cathedral, or take a stroll in the midnight sun or under the Northern Lights and explore the nightlife of the city dubbed "The Paris of the North".

  • Snowmobile trip in the polar night, Mehamn
  • Breakfast at the North Cape Plateau, Honningsvåg
  • Midnight concert in the Arctic Cathedral, Tromsø
Day 9: Ports: Finnsnes - Harstad - Risøyhamn - Sortland - Stokmarknes - Svolvær - Stamsund
We return to the wild, idyllic Lofoten Islands . Beneath the jagged mountains lie chalky white sandy beaches and fishing villages with a vibrant fishing industry and locals using the coastal ships for everyday trips and transport. If the weather permits, we will enter the narrow Trollfjord. There is a strong possibility of spotting sea eagles here.

  • A taste of Lofoten, Harstad
  • Experience Lofoten, Svolvær
  • Golfing at Lofoten Links, Svolvær
  • Horse riding in Lofoten, Svolvær
  • Meet the people of Lofoten, Svolvær
  • Feast with the Viking chieftain,Svolvær
  • Brewery visit and beer tasting, Svolvær
  • Sea eagle safari in a RIB, Svolvær
  • Sea Eagle Safari in Trollfjorden, disembarkation from the ship
Day 10: Ports: Bodø - Ørnes - Sandnessjøen - Brønnøysund - Rørvik
Now we have come so far south that we're crossing the Arctic Circle and sailing away from the polar night and the sunlit nights. But you can still see the Northern Lights in the winter, and it is never completely dark during the summer nights. Here you sail past a myriad of small islands, islets and skerries and past the special mountain, Trollhatten, which has a hole in the middle. If you wish, you can also go on the trip to the mountain and enter the hole.

  • Hiking at Torghatten, Brønnøysund
  • The Norwegian salmon adventure, Brønnøysund
  • Experience the World Heritage listed Vega Islands, Brønnøysund
Day 11: Ports: Trondheim - Kristiansund - Molde - Ålesund
We sail through the wide Trondheim fjord that is bounded by rolling farmland on both sides and return to the coast and the open sea. You can disembark in Kristiansund and be driven along the Atlantic Ocean Road, which has been called the world's most beautiful drive. The road meanders along islets and skerries, and afterwards you can re-embark in Molde.

  • Trondheim and the Nidaros Cathedral
  • Experience the Atlantic Road, Kristiansund
  • Atlanterhavsveien and Bergtatt marble mine, Kristiansund
  • The Atlantic Ocean Road with curvy roads and bridges.
  • Ports: Trondheim - Kristiansund - Molde - Ålesund
Day 12: Ports: Torvik - Måløy - Florø - Bergen
The last day of the tour takes you through a diverse coastal landscape of bare rocky mountains and a maze of sounds and waterways between many islands. The great fjords and glaciers are situated inland. Bergen awaits at the end of the voyage. We hope you have many good memories from your journey along the Norwegian coast with Havila Voyages, and we look forward to seeing you again.

  • Norway in a nutshell, Bergen
  • Experience Bergen by sailboat
  • Sea kayaking in Bergen

Havila Ships (Expedition, 640-guests)

Havila has a fleet of four identical ships - Havila Castor, Havila Capella, Havila Polaris and Havila Pollux. The internal decor of the ships is inspired by the sea, the sky, mountains and glaciers, and the food served are traditional dishes from the local towns and villages along the route. You can view the Northern Lights and the midnight sun while seated in a comfortable lounge chair under the glass roof.

(Click image to view Ship details)

•    Voyage in the cabin category of your choice
•    Full board  (Breakfast, lunch and dinner)
•    Free Wifi

Food and beverage
•    Optional, free upgrade to our five-course signature dinner-menu in the Hildring fine dining restaurant (two evenings for round-voyage-travelers or one evening for North/South voyage-travelers)
•    Non-alcoholic beverage package with a free choice of mineral water, soft drinks, and cold pressed juices from all serving points on board. You get a total of 30 units (roundtrip) or 15 units (voyage South/North)
•    A rich selection of premium coffee choices such as Café Latte, Espresso, Cappuccino etc. from all serving points on board
•    Welcome package in your cabin upon arrival
•    Welcome drink and snacks in the Havblikk Bar & Lounge on deck 9 every day from 16:00 – 18:00
•    A 20% discount on all Havila profile-products in the Havila Shop
•    Free serving in your cabin when using our QR-code for Self-Ordering service


Nidaros Cathedral
  • Bus tour
  • Nidaros Cathedral is Norway's national shrine and has been a pilgrimage destination for almost a thousand years. The cathedral was built over the grave of St Olav, the Viking king who brought Christianity to Norway. The church has also been used for the coronation of Norwegian kings and queens right up to the present time. Join a local guide for a tour around the magnificent building and learn about the history and legends
Viking Feast
  • Bus tour
  • During the bus ride from Stamsund to Borg and the Lofotr Viking Museum, you will be introduced to the Viking Age and learn more about the museum and how the Vikings lived so that you are prepared for an evening with the Vikings.  For dinner, there will be lamb, vegetables, barley groats, cranberries, Viking bread, sour cream and butter. Mead, a Viking drink will be served with the food.  
Russian Border
  • Bus tour
  • Although border crossing is prohibited, the journey includes stops at intriguing locales. You'll visit Andersgrotta and a memorial monument dedicated to the Russian army before returning to the Havila Voyages ship. Please note, Andersgrotta, with its steep stairs and rugged terrain, may be challenging for those with mobility limitations.
WWII Museum Svolvaer
  • Walking tour
  • Join Dr. Leiren for a walk to the fascinating Lofoten War memorial museum. Lofoten War Memorial Museum has Norways larges exhibition of uniforms and smaller objects from WW2. The museum shows you a balanced picture from this dramatic period during 1940–1945. The museum has many rare and never before published pictures from the war.
German submarine bunkers Trondheim
  • Walking tour
  • Dr. Leiren walks those interested over to the German submarine bunker and you will learn about the region’s history in the World War
Bergen tour
  • Walking tour
  • Join us in exploring the versatile exciting city of Bergen to end our wonderful time together

Lecturer: Terje Leiren

Dr. Terje Leiren is Professor Emeritus of Scandinavian Studies and History at the University of Washington, Seattle. He was the first holder of the prestigious Sverre Arestad Endowed Chair from 2007 to 2017. Terje earned his Ph.D. in History from the University of North Texas and taught at the University of Oslo before joining the University of Washington in 1977. Professor Leiren’s research and writing has focused on the Nordic countries with special emphasis on the history of Norway.

Dr. Leiren is the author of four books and more than forty scholarly articles on Scandinavian history and culture. His most recent book, the comprehensive Historical Dictionary of Norway, second edition, was published in 2019. Terje has lived in, and traveled extensively throughout the Nordic region and loves sharing his knowledge of the North with his fellow travelers.



Included Services: Included Excursions: Join us on this almost all-inclusive history tour September 19th - October 1st 2024:

Seaview Superior Twin: $4,708.00 per person

Seaview Superior Single: $7,378.00

Interior Single: $3,568.00

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