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Norwegian Arctic and Scottish Highlands Encompassed

Scotland's bustling capital city and beautiful highlands kick-off this 18-day odyssey through the Norwegian fjords that will sweep you off your feet but help you find your sea legs. Cruise along the fjord coastline of Norway as you explore the glaciers that carved the stunning landscapes, visit arctic islands by Zodiac in search of wildlife, walk through history at UNESCO World Heritage Sites, and so much more. This is a journey for all those keen to explore all ends of the earth.

  • Duration: 18 Days
  • Guaranteed Departure: Yes
  • Physical rating: Light
  • Supplier Tour ID: XCELNX/252986
  • Your Guide: English speaking
  • Starts: Edinburgh, United Kingdom
  • Finishes: Longyearbyen, Norway
  • Age requirement: 12 +
You will Visit
  • Edinburgh
  • Kirkwall
  • Orkney
  • Shetland
  • Ålesund
  • Åndalsnes
  • Brønnøysund
  • Svartisen
  • Lofoten
  • Tromsø
  • Hornsund
  • Bellsund
  • Longyearbyen

Itinerary

01

Day 1: Edinburgh

Arrive at any time. Today's Welcome Meeting with the group includes a drink and light snack.

02

Day 2: Edinburgh

Enjoy a walking tour of Edinburgh and a visit to the famous Edinburgh Castle. The afternoon is free to discover at your own pace.

03

Day 3: Scottish Highlands

Enjoy a day trip to the Scottish Highlands. Explore Stirling on a guided tour of the old town including Stirling Castle. Continue to Wallace Monument and learn about the infamous battle of Bannockburn. Enjoy some free time in Stirling for lunch. After lunch visit Deanston Distillery and enjoy a tasting before returning to Edinburgh for the night.

04

Day 4: Edinburgh/Kirkwall

Enjoy a free morning in Edinburgh before boarding the G Expedition. Our ship departs in the late afternoon, sailing towards Kirkwall.
Board the ship this afternoon in the suburb Port of Leith, to embark on a voyage to the Arctic. The G Expedition departs in the evening through a lock which leads down to sea level, before heading out to sail down the Firth of Forth. While on deck, keep a lookout for common eiders and northern gannets.

05

Day 5: Kirkwall/Orkney

Visit historic and mystical sites by coach on this remote island. Explore the Standing Stones of Stenness, the intriguing Ring of Brodgar, and the village of Skara Brae.
There are few places in the world that offer as much as the Orkneys. Only six miles off the coast of Scotland, the islands are famous for their abundant marine bird life and dramatic coastal scenery. Enjoy an afternoon to explore the ancient history of the people of these Scottish Isles.

06

Day 6: Shetland Islands

Continue northwards to the remote Shetland Islands. Opt to visit Jarlshof or join the Puffin Bus to focus on puffins and seabird photography at Sumbrugh Head (weather dependent). Enjoy additional time to explore Lerwick.
The Shetland archipelago is an engaging mix of Scotland and Scandinavia blessed with spectacular coastlines, varied and abundant birdlife and a number of archaeological sites that date back thousands of years.

07

Day 7: Ålesund

Cross the famous North Sea to reach Norway. Spend the afternoon exploring the beautiful Art Nouveau district of Ålesund, or take the 418 steps up to Fjellstua for the best view of the city, islands and bay. Opt to visit the Ålesund Museum and learn about the culture and history of the town, including the fire which destroyed the city in 1904.

08

Day 8: Åndalsnes

A full day to explore the town of Åndalsnes and the surrounding mountains. Board the Rauma Railway taking you into the dramatic scenes of the Romsdalen mountains, or explore on foot in "The Alp town by the fjord".

09

Day 9: Trondheim

Continue on to Trondheim. Choose between hiking in Bymarka Nature Reserve before visiting the Sverresborg Folk Museum, or enjoying a city tour including the Folk Museum and the elaborate Nidaros Cathedral, built between 1070 and 1300. Enjoy a free afternoon to explore the area on your own.

10

Day 10: Torghatten/Vega

The rugged coastline of central Norway features some of the world's most beautiful scenery. Hike up to the famous hole in the mountain, with fantastic views of the region. Keep an eye out for Norway's mythical trolls. In the afternoon, head to the quaint and picturesque Vega Island, a UNESCO site. Wander the fishing villages, go on a guided nature hike, and appreciate the slow pace of life.
The mountain scenery and coastline offer breathtaking views. The goal is to visit Torghatten, one of the most bizarre rock formations in Norway and a significant local landmark.

11

Day 11: Svartisen/Vikingen

Visit Svartisen, and Vikingen, to see beautiful glaciers and a globe sculpture which marks Vikingen as a point directly on the Arctic Circle.

12

Day 12: Lofoten Islands

The Lofoten archipelago is an enchanting area of picturesque villages by the sea backed with jagged peaks. Go ashore by Zodiac for a day trip of the area. Start by visiting the Tørrfiskmuseum to learn about traditional work of the islands before visiting Nusfjord, one of Norway's oldest and best-preserved fishing villages for lunch at a local restaurant. After, stop in Henningsvær for time to see local art or explore the quaint fishing village. In the evening, stay on deck as you cruise into one of Norway's most famous fjords, the short yet dramatic Trollfjord. Search the cliffs on your continuing quest to spot trolls.

13

Day 13: Tromsø

Tromsø, the capital of northern Norway, is known as the "Gateway to the Arctic" as it was the embarkation point for many Arctic expeditions. Learn about past Arctic expeditions and opt for some hiking or to explore the city on your own.

14

Day 14: At Sea/Bjørnøya

Sail past mist-shrouded Bjørnøya (Bear Island) – a birdwatcher's paradise featuring spectacular views.
Sail past Bear Island. Weather permitting, there may be an opportunity to explore mist-shrouded Bjørnøya by Zodiac - the weather is temperamental, so this is a 50/50 chance. Bear island even from afar has spectacular views, thousands of species of birds like fulmars, kittiwakes, guillemots and gulls.

15

Day 15: Hornsund

Explore this archipelago of deep fjords, mountains and massive ice sheets. Keep your eyes open for walruses, seals, reindeer, Arctic foxes and, of course, polar bears.
Our flexible itinerary and experience here allow us to take the best advantage of ice and weather conditions. Each season we attempt to discover new landing sites to explore to enhance your expedition experience. Shore walks and Zodiac adventures bring us up close to mystical landscapes, icebergs, and wildlife.

16

Day 16: Svalbard

Soak in the sights and sounds of Svalbard. Glaciers, nesting birds, sea mammals like polar bears, walruses and whales plus land mammals like the Arctic fox and reindeer all call this region home.

17

Day 17: Svalbard/Longyearbyen

Continue exploring the icy wonderland of Svalbard.

18

Day 18: Longyearbyen

Disembark the G Expedition in the morning.
Transfers to Longyearbyen Airport will be offered to all passengers with flights scheduled after disembarkation.

Inclusions:
    Activities
    • Edinburgh city tour
    • Edinburgh Castle visit
    • Day trip to Scottish Highlands
    • 14 nts aboard the G Expedition
    • Meeting point to ship transfer
    • Zodiac and land excursions with our expert expedition team
    • Lectures and educational programs
    • Orkney Islands guided tour of ancient ruins
    • Shetland Islands visit
    • Rauma Railway Excursion
    • Trondheim visit
    • Vega Island visit
    • Svartisen glacier excursion
    • Local village visit (Lofoten Islands)
    • Tromsø city tour
    • Hornsund excursion
    • Waterproof boots supplied for USA sizes 4 - 16
    • Expedition parka
    Accommodation
    • Hotels (3 nts). Aboard the G Expedition in quad-, triple-, twin-share cabins, or suites (all with en suite bathrooms and porthole or window, 14 nts). Please note that all cabins consist of twin-size berths and are ocean-facing. Suites have one queen-size bed
    • 17 breakfasts, 13 lunches, 13 dinners
    Transport
    • G Expedition, Zodiac, local bus, coach, walking
    Group Leader
    • Edinburgh extension: Chief Experience Officer (CEO) throughout, local guides. Expedition Cruise: One expedition team member per 10 guests
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Tour Highlights:
  • Enjoy a walking tour of Edinburgh and Edinburgh Castle
  • Embark on a day trip to the Scottish Highlands
  • Explore the Standing Stones of Stenness on the remote island of Kirkwall
  • Wander through fishing villages and appreciate the slow pace of life
  • Search cliffs for trolls
  • Enjoy some of the world's most beautiful scenery along Norway's rugged coastline
  • Sail past mist-shrouded Bjørnøya — a bird watcher's paradise featuring spectacular views