17 Nights Exploring Greenland & The Canadian High Arctic

17 Nights Exploring Greenland & The Canadian High Arctic


Venture deep into the far northern reaches of the Arctic, on a quest for arctic wildlife and the magisterial scenery of the ice––occurring at an epic scale in Greenland. And share the experience of explorers from ancient to modern, goaded by the desire to discover the Northwest Passage. Another facet of our multifaceted focus on the vital Arctic region, this itinerary provides unique opportunities to:


  • Cruise to Greenland and the eastern entrance of Canada’s fabled Northwest Passage
  • Explore Greenland’s fjords, and the Ilulissat Glacier, a UNESCO site and a tongue of the Greenland ice cap
  • Spend a week in the Canadian High Arctic observing polar bears and other denizens of the ice
  • Visit an historic Inuit fishing village and former whaling ports
  • DAY 1-2: U.S./Keflavík, Iceland/Reykjavík

    Depart on an overnight flight to Keflavík and transfer to Reykjavík where you will have the option of either a soak in the Blue Lagoon or experience the hot springs, geothermal plant and horse farm. Following lunch, check into the Courtyard by Marriott, Keflavík. (Day 2: L,D)


    DAY 3: Reykjavík/Kangerlussuaq, Greenland/Embark

    Fly by chartered aircraft to Greenland. Embark National Geographic Explorer. (B,L,D)


    DAY 4: Greenland’s West Coast & Sisimiut

    Cruise down the length of Kangerlussuaq Fjord en route to Sisimiut. Dozens of deep fjords carve into Greenland’s west coast, many with glaciers fed by the ice cap that covers 80% of the country. At Sisimiut, a former whaling port, visit the museum and wander amid a jumble of wooden 18th-century buildings. There are several walking options to explore in and around town. (B,L,D)


    DAY 5: At Sea in Baffin Bay

    A relaxing day at sea allows for time to hear talks from our staff about the fascinating history of polar exploration. Go up to the bridge to watch for whales. Head up to the library. Enjoy the sauna or have a rigorous workout in the fitness center, with its “million dollar views.” Or simply relax in the Observation Lounge. (B,L,D)


    DAY 6-13: Exploring The Canadian High Arctic

    We begin our exploration of the Canadian High Arctic with a visit to the small Inuit community of Pond Inlet, Nunavut. We will explore some of the beautiful bays and inlets along Baffin Island's Lancaster Sound. Carved by Ice Age glaciers, Lancaster Sound is the eastern gateway to the Arctic Archipelago. European explorers like William Baffin first ventured here in the 17th century to search for the Northwest Passage. The sound has been a favorite Inuit hunting and fishing location for hundreds of years. Our days here will be spent searching for ringed seals, arctic foxes, walruses, and polar bears, as well as beluga whales. We may even see the elusive narwhal, an arctic whale known for the long, spiraling tooth that projects up to ten feet from its upper jaw.  Visit Devon Island and walk with our ship's archaeologist to learn about the Thule people that once inhabited this region and were the ancestors of all modern Inuit. Go ashore Dundas Harbor for a chance to hike on the tundra and search for interesting flora and fauna, including extensive moss beds with interspersed flowering vascular plants. Look for gyrfalcons, nesting above the sod and stone dwellings once inhabited by the Thule people. (B,L,D)


    DAY 14: At Sea In Baffin Bay

    We make our way across Baffin Bay with a relaxing day at sea. Enjoy talks from our staff and look for wildlife from the Bridge. (B,L,D)


    DAY 15: Disko Bay & Ilulissat

    Sail into Disko Bay and set out to explore a tongue of the Greenland ice cap. Take an extraordinary cruise among towering icebergs of the UNESCO World Heritage-designated Ilulissat Icefjord. Visit the town of Ilulissat and take a hike to the archaeological site in the Sermermiut Valley. (B,L,D)


    DAY 16: Exploring West Greenland

    Our final day exploring will be spent in Greenland's beautiful, scenic fjords. Take a Zodiac cruise or kayak some of the picturesque waterways. Our undersea specialist may launch the ROV to see the marine life inhabiting the fjord floor. (B,L,D)


    DAY 17-18: Kangerlussuaq/ Disembark/ Reykjavík/ Keflavík/U.S.

    Disembark in Kangerlussuaq and take a charter flight to Reykjavík where we will overnight in the Hotel Courtyard by Marriott. On our final day in Reykjavík you have your choice of either a soak in the Blue Lagoon or a tour of the Reykjanes Peninsula. After lunch, transfer to the airport in Keflavík for flights home. (Day 17: B,L,D, Day 18: B,L)