Sailing from Spitsbergen to NE Greenland
Arctic cruise from Longyearbyen (Spitsbergen) including Kaiser Franz Joseph Fjord and Scoresby Sund
This tour includes: Longyearbyen • Myggebugten (Foster Bugt) • Kaiser Franz Joseph Fjord • Blomster Bugt • Renbugten • Maria Ø • Ella Ø • Skipperdal (Segelsällskapets Fjord) • Kong Oscar Fjord • Scoresby Sund • Danmark Ø • Sydkap • Illoqqortoormiit • Kap Stewart • Constable Pynt;
- Spitsbergen to North-East Greenland (Aurora Borealis)
- Arctic expedition cruise with specialist expedition leaders
- 2017 departure: 07 August (RVR25)
- Nights: 17
- Cabin price from: £4,125* (triple shared porthole)
- Deposit: 20%
- Vessel: S/v Rembrandt van Rijn
- Tour leader: Oceanwide Expeditions
- * Please note that the prices quoted are for cruise only and do not include flights or hotel accommodation. We will arrange your flights and any accommodation but as fares and rates are subject to change, prices are quoted on request.
- Spitsbergen North-East Greenland 2017 detailed itinerary
- Greenland 2017 Overview, dates & prices
S/v Rembrandt van Rijn was built as a herring lugger early last century. She was rebuilt as a three-mast passenger sailing schooner in 1994. The vessel underwent a complete rebuilding and refurbishment program and the communication and navigation equipment has been completely renewed according to the latest SOLAS regulations.
The Rembrandt is well suited for expedition cruising among small islands and offers excellent open deck viewing areas, even when under sail. The two inflatable rubber crafts (zodiacs) enable landing and wildlife viewing opportunities in otherwise inaccessible areas. Read more about the Rembrandt van Rijn…
Arrive in Longyearbyen, on Spitsbergen, the administrative capital of the Spitsbergen archipelago of which West Spitsbergen is the largest island. Before embarking there is an opportunity to visit this former mining village. The Parish Church and the Polar Museum are well worth visiting. In the early evening the ship will sail out of Isfjorden and head for Greenland.
Days 2 – 4
At sea, on our way to Greenland, we may see the edge of the East Greenland sea-ice. We keep watch for whales, and also for migrating seabirds.
If we have experienced fair winds we will attempt to sail through the sea ice into Foster Bugt, making our first landing at Myggebugten. Beyond the old hunters' hut (in the first half of last century Norwegian trappers hunted here for Polar Bear and Arctic Fox) there is an extensive tundra populated by Musk Oxen. The small lakes are home to geese.
We sail through Kaiser Franz Joseph Fjord, a magnificent fjord with towering mountains on both sides, its inner reaches choked with huge icebergs. In the evening we will reach the incredible Teufelschloss. This prominent mountain is part of the so-called Eleonora Bay super group: Sedimentary rocks which was created between 950 – 610 mi. years ago to a depth of 16 kilometres. The scenery will be dominated by this unique geology during the next days.
We will land at Blomster Bugt to view the beautiful geological formations. Arctic Hare are usually seen here, and there is a lake with Great Northern Diver and their young. Musk oxen are also often spotted in the area and the hiking opportunities are phenomenal. In the afternoon we will venture deeper into Kejser Franz Joseph Fjord and find shelter in Renbugten. Huge icebergs and spectacular scenery will accompany us throughout the passage of this relatively narrow fjord system.
Today we try to land in Renbugten in the search for Muskoxen and Arctic hare. At lunch time we will head eastwards and into Antarctic Sound and enjoy the views of the ancient sedimentary rocks and witness what plate tectonics have done to the once horizontal layers. We aim at arriving at Maria Ø before nightfall.
At Maria Ø we hope to make a landing to investigate evidence of the activities of the Nazi war machine of WWII present in the form of old oil barrels. It is also here that the Danish researcher Lauge Koch established a summer station in 1950 near an old Danish trappers hut. The views all around are stunning. In the afternoon we hope to anchor off the Danish Military station at Ella Ø. If occupied we are not allowed to visit but we can make a nice walk on the island and enjoy the views and possibly see Muskoxen.
Exploring the largest National Park in the World is intriguing and fascinating. Today will be no less exciting as we lift anchor from Ella Ø in the early morning. We sail via Narhval Sund southwards and enter Segelsällskapets Fjord to land at Skipperdal with its amazing geology and fantastic hiking opportunities. Once again we have good chances of Muskoxen, Snow hare, and Ptarmigan. We may anchor up at the mouth of Alpefjord for the night.
Today we head into Kong Oscar Fjord and aim to make landfall in the afternoon near Menander Øer; Another spectacular place offering good walking opportunities and chances of large land mammals. At night we have good chances for the Aurora Borealis should we be lucky with the weather.
Kong Oscar Fjord is one of the largest fjords in the area and as we continue to sail east we land in Antarctic Havn. The second half of the day we spend in this wide and extensive valley where we also could see groups of Musk Oxen. At this time of year the autumnal colours of the sparse vegetation make the landscapes even more beautiful. Intriguing geo-politics played out here in the early 1930s between Norway and Denmark.
At sea. Throughout the day we will be at sea. The goal is to enter the largest fjord system in the World: Scoresbysund.
At Danmark Ø we find the remains of an Inuit settlement abandoned around 200 years ago. The circular 'tent rings' of stones indicate the summer houses, while the winter houses can be seen closer to a small cape. The sites are well preserved, allowing entrances and even bear-proof meat caches to be identified. There are also grave sites. During the afternoon we sail along the east side of Milne Land with numerous huge icebergs all around.
We land near Sydkap in the morning for the spectacular views. Arctic hare are often seen in this area. During lunch we get a glimpse of the entrance to Nordvestfjord in Scoresby Land. Here we encounter huge icebergs, some over 100m high and more than a kilometre in length. Most of the bergs are grounded as the fjord is only about 400m deep here.
We land at Ittoqqortoormiit, the biggest settlement in the Scoresby Sund with about 500 inhabitants. At the post office you can buy stamps for your postcards, or just wander around to see the sledge dogs and the drying skins of Seal, Musk Ox and Polar Bear.
In the morning we land on the south coast of Jameson Land near Kap Stewart at a lagoon, an area with waders and geese collecting for the autumn migration. The landscape here is gently undulating. Musk Oxen and Collared Lemming survive on the meagre vegetation. Further inside Hurry Inlet we may take a walk near the head of the fjord and take a walk near one of the rivers terminating here. We may opt to do an excursion near Hareelv and climb J. P. Kochs Fjeld. In this area they found the fossils of the link between fish and amphibians in the lower Cretaceous. We spend the night at anchor off Constable Pynt.
We make our final landing at the airfield of Constable Pynt and fly with chartered plane to Reykjavik.
Disclaimer: This itinerary is dependent on sea and ice conditions. The final itinerary will be decided by the ship's captain and your Expedition Leader to maximize opportunities.