21 Nights Northwest Passage: Greenland to Alaska

21 Nights Northwest Passage: Greenland to Alaska


For centuries the search for the Northwest Passage lured the most intrepid explorers, but it wasn’t until 1906 that Roald Amundsen finally completed the first sea voyage across the Arctic Archipelago. Aboard the newest member of our fleet,National Geographic Resolution,discover the otherworldly icescapes of the Northwest Passage that so confounded generations of adventurers. Given its high ice rating (Polar Class 5) and its patented X-bow, the ship is able to easily and safely penetrate the ice, allowing you to explore the dramatic coasts of this untouched region–encountering rare wildlife, hardy cultures, and glorious creations of ice and rock at the top of the world.

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    DAY 1: U.S./Fly to Kangerlussuaq, Greenland

    Arrive by chartered aircraft in western Greenland and embark National Geographic Resolution at the head of the picturesque Kangerlussuaq Fjord. (L,D) padding DAY 2: Greenland’s West Coast and Sisimiut The massive ice sheet that blankets much of Greenland feeds dozens of fjords and glaciers on the dramatic western coast. Trace these rugged shores on the lookout for humpback and minke whales. Stop at the former whaling port of Sisimiut to visit the museum and stroll among its 18thcentury wooden buildings. (B,L,D)


    DAY 3: Disko Bay & Ilulissat

    Sail into Disko Bay to explore the Ilulissat Icefjord, a tongue of the Greenland ice sheet that extends to the bay. The glacier calves huge amounts of ice at an astonishing rate, releasing icebergs that can soar up to 300 feet. A cruise among these gigantic sculptures of ice is a highlight of our voyage. Explore the remains of the historic fishing village of Sermermiut and take in spectacular views of the ice-choked mouth of the fjord. (B,L,D)


    DAY 4-6: Exploring East Baffin Island, Nunavut, Canada We begin our exploration of the Canadian High Arctic with a visit to the small Inuit community of Pond Inlet, Nunavut. Explore some of the beautiful bays and inlets along Baffin Island’s Lancaster Sound, a favorite Inuit hunting and fishing location for hundreds of years. Carved by Ice Age glaciers, Lancaster Sound is also the eastern gateway to the Arctic Archipelago, where European explorers like William Baffin first ventured in the 17th century to search for the Northwest Passage. Our days here will be spent searching for ringed seals, arctic foxes, walruses, and polar bears, as well as beluga and bowhead whales. Visit Devon Island and take a walk with our ship’s archaeologist to learn about the Thule people—ancestors of the modern Inuit—that once inhabited this region. (B,L,D)


    DAY 7-16: Exploring the Northwest Passage

    Our ice ship, National Geographic Resolution, navigates through the fabled Northwest Passage —following nature’s path, dependent on ice and weather conditions. We explore the ice-choked channels and glacier-carved islands that stretch for hundreds of miles—a stunning display of raw geology. We’ll explore the rocky, “Mars-like” terrain of uninhabited Devon Island. We take our cues from nature: following wildlife, stopping for hikes on the tundra, dropping anchor in a beautiful fjord or an iceberg-strewn bay to explore and kayak beneath massive ice sculptures and soaring cliffs. Sail past the northernmost part of mainland North America in the Bellot Strait, one of the narrowest and most infamous of the passage. Cross the top of the Northwest Territory of Canada and search for ringed seals, arctic foxes, musk oxen, walruses, and polar bears, as well as beluga and bowhead whales. We’ll learn about the Inuit peoples who have hunted and fished here for thousands of years. And we’ll hear heroic stories of the early explorers: Roald Amundsen, John Ross, William Edward Parry, and James Clark Ross, among others. (B,L,D) 


    DAY 17: At Sea

    Enjoy National Geographic Resolution’s many amenities as we continue along the shores of the Canadian High Arctic. Soak in the ship’s infinitystyle outdoor hot tubs, take in panoramic views from the rooftop observation deck, and enjoy talks from our onboard experts and reflect on the amazing wildlife and geology that we’ve seen on our journey so far. (B,L,D)


    DAY 18: Herschel Island, Yukon Territory

    Once a thriving whaling village off the coast of the Yukon Territory, Herschel Island is now classified as a Natural Environmental Park. The island protects the wildlife alongside the heritage of the Inuvialuit people and the whaling industry. Home to the largest colony of black guillemots in the Western Arctic, we’ll wander through the historic dwellings while keeping an eye out for the wildlife residents. (B,L,D)


    DAY 19-21: At Sea

    As we continue to sail westward along the northern coast of Alaska, reflect on our adventures while scanning the water for marine life and enjoying life on board. Take a yoga class, unwind with a massage in the wellness center, and curl up next to the fireplace in the library. Share images with our National Geographic-Lindblad certified photography instructor, and marvel at footage captured by the ship’s underwater camera. Our voyage culminates with a farewell dinner on board. (B,L,D)


    DAY 22: Nome, Alaska, U.S./Disembark/Home

    Arrive in the remote city of Nome, Alaska, on the coast of the Bering Sea. Disembark to explore the town prior to our charter flight to Anchorage. In Anchorage transfer to flights home. (B,L)