RUGGED & REMOTE SPITSBERGEN WITH THE MIDNIGHT SUN

From £2799pp
15 Nights
Special Interest
Europe

Highlights:

  • Experience a taste of past and present life amongst the isolated lands of Spitsbergen
  • Explore abandoned towns, revel in the beauty of their Arctic landscapes and more
  • Witness the midnight sun and see astonishing natural wonders within the Arctic Circle

In Norway’s northernmost reaches, be captivated by the beauty, remoteness and eerie silence of remarkable landscapes and destinations found amongst isolated lands within the Arctic Circle. You’re in for magical scenic cruising and many unforgettable explorations ashore, with two days in Spitsbergen – found just 700 nautical miles from the North Pole – top on the list of highlights. Time in Longyearbyen and Pyramiden is something not many get to experience; these far-away towns, situated amongst scenes of stunning Arctic landscapes, offer an insight into the Svalbard archipelago’s Soviet-influenced history, with their imposing architecture and abandoned mineshafts. Go inside abandoned buildings and wander amongst the industrial communities that thrived here, meet huskies and their handlers, and much more, for a taste of what life was once like and how it is for locals today. Your time in Svalbard also includes memorable sails by the by the magnificent Nordenskiöldbreen and Tuna glaciers, as well as the jaw-dropping stratifications of Tempelfjorden’s Temple Mountain.

 

Extraordinary destinations on the Norwegian mainland also await discovery during your Arctic adventure. Sailing all the way to the ‘top of Europe’, Balmoral takes you to Honningsvåg, from where you can revel in the unspoilt, rugged landscapes of the North Cape plateau. Spend a day in Tromsø, with time to visit the iconic Arctic Cathedral and take in views from atop Mount Storsteinen, and enjoy a rare visit to the beautiful Vesterålen archipelago, to discover miles of rugged coastline, unspoilt countryside and the ‘Blue Town’ of Sortland – almost entirely painted in various blue hues thanks to artist Bjorn Elvenes. Scenic cruising by the mighty Black Glacier will provide a glimpse of Mother Nature’s work at its finest, while you’ll also be within the Arctic Circle during the Midnight Sun phenomenon, when the sun does not set at night. Elsewhere in Norway, visit Åndalsnes for a chance to ride the magnificent Rauma Railway into fjordland mountains; and witness the beauty of natural wonders including the Torghatten and Seven Sisters mountains, Trollfjord and Devil’s Jaw.

Price Includes:

  • Comfortable, stylish cabins and suites equipped with a Smart TV, hairdryer, tea and coffee making facilities, a fridge and individually controlled air conditioning

  • A tempting choice of cuisine every day throughout your cruise – with five-course à la carte dinners, casual breakfast and lunch buffets, late-night snacks and much more

  • Unlimited, self-service tea and coffee available 24hrs at selected venues, complimentary afternoon tea* with sandwiches and cakes, and in-room sandwiches and snacks

  • A full programme of evening entertainment, including cabaret shows, comedy, dancing and live music

  • Full use of on board leisure facilities, including swimming pools, Jacuzzis and gym

  • A wide choice of engaging on board activities and lectures throughout the day

  • All UK port taxes (where collectable in advance)

  • Luggage porterage between your cabin and the drop-off/pick-up point

  • Formal welcome and/or Captain’s Drinks Party and Gala Buffet

Itinerary

  • July 19th Departure from Rosyth, Scotland

    Edinburgh, Scotland's historic capital, is one of the U.K.'s finest cities. Combining beautiful architecture, engrossing cultures and an extensive heritage, this Scottish delight is a must-visit destination.

    From the UNESCO-listed Old Town & New Town districts within the city centre to the lush parks and rolling hills on the outskirts, Edinburgh is a city that begs to be explored, offering something for everyone.

    To see some of Scotland's most famous and beautiful sights, be sure to explore the historic Old Town quarter which is home to the city's magnificent castle, the famous Holyrood Royal residence, the parliament building and St Giles' Cathedral. Or if you prefer to indulge in a little retail therapy, you can wander the high-end stores and independent boutiques that line Princes Street, George Street and other areas in the New Town.

    Edinburgh is also renowned for its annual celebrations and events, including the world-famous Military Tattoo and New Years Hogmanay.

  • July 21st Åndalsnes, Norway

    Surrounded by the incredible mountains of the Romsdalsfjord, Åndalsnes is often referred to as the 'Alp town by the fjord'. Situated at the mouth of the Rauma River, the town is in one of the most beautiful areas of scenic Norway, and a natural starting point for forest walks in the hilly terrain and short hikes to magnificent viewpoints.

    With all its natural attractions, this beautiful destination is one of Norway’s most popular locations for sightseers and a mecca for hikers. Known as the 'Mountaineering Capital', Åndalsnes is close to the mighty Trollveggen (The Troll Wall), the tallest vertical rock face in Europe – an appealing challenge for many climbers. Many visitors, who wish to enjoy the sights with a little less effort, can take the Rauma Railway into the mountains to discover amazing views.

  • July 22nd Rørvik, Norway

    Rørvik is a picturesque island village located on the eastern part of the Vikna archipelago, in Nord-Trøndelag county, Norway. This pretty village serves as the administrative centre for the municipality and has a population of approximately 3,000 inhabitants.

  • July 22nd Cruising Torghatten, Norway

    A scenic cruise along the shores of Toget Island allows you see one of Norway's most astonishing natural wonders - Torghatten Mountain. The mountain is known affectionately as 'the mountain with the hole', Torghatten is famous for the huge tunnel that strikes right through the middle of it and has has to be seen to be believed.

  • July 22nd Cruising Seven Sisters, Norway

    Forming a majestic chain of peaks overlooking the shipping channel, the Seven Sister mountain range is an awe-inspring backdrop to the myriad of islands and Norwegian landscapes. Standing 1,000 feet above the shoreline, these beautiful women are perhaps best observed in all their glory from your ship. It is possible to climb them, and to learn the legend of the trolls who were turned to stone!

  • July 23rd Cruising Trollfjord, Norway

    The Trollfjord is a spectacular 2 kilometre long branch of the Raftsund straight that divides Norway's Lofoten and Vesterålen archipelagos.

    One of the most popular sight-seeing destinations in Nordland county, the Trollfjord is a relatively short and narrow fjord that's lined with steep mountains and vast rocky cliffs. Fred. Olsen's more compact ships allow you to cruise directly into the heart of the Trollfjord to join the flocks of native Sea Eagles in their natural habitat.

  • July 23rd Cruising Tjeldsundet Strait, Norway

    Slicing through the rugged landscapes of Troms og Finnmark, separating the islands of Hinnøya and Tjeldøya from the mainland, the Tjeldsundet Strait has long been – since Viking times in fact – one of Norway’s most important waterways, serving as vital route between the country’s northern and southern regions.

    But while shipping vessels sail this route to save precious time on their journeys, Fred. Olsen’s smaller ships take you along these glassy waters for a much more memorable, rewarding and exciting reason – to experience the beauty and peace of Tjeldsundet, revel in the might of the flanking mountains and the drama of the rock faces, and see the impressive Tjeldsund Bridge. A scenic cruising adventure to remember.

  • July 23rd Cruising Djevelen, Norway

    Sailing along the picturesque northwest coast of Norway’s rugged Senja Island, your smaller-sized ship will present you with views of the tooth-like peaks of the Okshornan Mountains, affectionately known as the Djevelens Tanngard or ‘Devil’s Teeth’.

    Although the Okshornan’s are a popular hiking route, the best way to appreciate their imposing magnificence and spectacular beauty is from the water, with unmissable photo opportunities to take advantage of as you glide serenely by this remarkable corner of Norway.

  • July 24th Tromsø, Norway

    The island city of Tromsø is one of northern Norway’s true delights. Rich with neo-classical architecture, the city known as the ‘Gateway to the Arctic’ contains the largest number of wooden houses in Northern Norway, and its old world charm makes it a joy to explore.

    A major cultural hub above the Arctic Circle, Tromsø is famed as a viewing point for the colourful Northern Lights that often light up the night sky. The city’s most recognisable landmark is the must-visit Arctic Cathedral. Built in 1965, the cathedral’s distinctive iceberg-shaped design was inspired by the landscapes of Northern Norway and features a beautiful glass mosaic.

    The many museums and galleries in the city include the Perspektivet Museum – set in a neo-classical building built in 1838 that has exhibits from Tromsø’s past, plus the Art Museum of Northern Norway and the Mack Brewery. Tromsø is also home to Polaria, an Arctic aquarium that is popular with locals and tourists alike. The aquarium’s tanks are full of Arctic fish species, and the friendly bearded seals always delight the visiting crowds.

    Tromsø, and the stunning landscapes that surround it, are best viewed from the top of the Storsteinen Mountain, which stands 420 metres above sea level. Accessible via cable car, the peak is easy to reach and one of the most popular spots on the edge of the city.

  • July 25th Honningsvåg, Norway

    Honningsvåg, on Norway’s North Cape, a fishing community characterised by its charming, pastel-shaded wooden buildings, attracts tourists from all over the world. Often referred to as the top of Europe, Honningsvåg is framed by dramatic rugged mountains and the remoteness of the Arctic Ocean.

    Honningsvåg is the gateway to the Nordkapp (North Cape), Europe’s most northernmost point. Its rocky coastlines, picturesque villages, endless cliff faces and vast snow-capped mountains are a joy to explore. For two months of summer, the sun is visible 24 hours a day from Nordkapp, and when the sun does set on this extraordinary landscape, the Aurora Borealis lights up the Polar sky. More on these wonderful seasonal changes can be experienced in the North Cape Hall visitor centre, which offers wide-screen film presentations about this Arctic region.

    Honningsvåg was completely destroyed during the Second World War, but rapidly rebuilt. The Artico Ice Bar in the city centre – made entirely of ice sourced from the natural lakes of Norwegian Lapland – is worth a visit. While the sea views from the Kompasset Restaurant, and the freshly baked waffles of the Grotten Bar – a huge cave cut into the face of the Cape cliff, both need discovering.

  • July 25th North Cape, Norway

    Cruising by the North Cape in the farthest reaches of northern mainland Norway is always a memorable experience. In the summer, between mid-May and the end of July, you can experience the midnight sun; while in winter this fascinating region near the very top of the world is one of the best places on earth to hopefully catch a glimpse of the elusive Northern Lights.

    No matter what time of the year you sail to this mesmerising part of the world you can also marvel at the natural beauty of the North Cape plateau, with its craggy cliff face jutting out into the sea and rising to about 1,000 feet above sea level. At the North Cape you always create memories which will last a lifetime.

  • July 26th Bear Island, Norway

    This beautiful island in the Barents Sea was first discovered in June 1596 by Willem Barents and fellow Dutch explorer Jacob van Heemskerk who named it Bear Island after spotting a polar bear here. Since its discovery, the island served as an important base for whale, seal and walrus hunting in the 17th century and was once home to a busy coal mining station. These settlements didn't stay for long however and today the island's only inhabitants are a small group of people that study local weather and sea conditions at the meteorological centre.

    As one of only a few protected Arctic nature reserves, Bear Island boasts breathtaking untouched landscapes and an abundance of wildlife. Despite the island's name, it's unlikely you'll see polar bears here anymore – although they do occasionally float by on drifting icebergs – however you're sure to spot some of the northern hemisphere's largest seabird colonies perched on the magnificent cliffs as you sail along the island's striking shores. Be sure to keep an eye out for arctic foxes, white-beaked dolphins, minke whales and various seal species too.

  • July 27th Pyramiden, Norway

    Located far above the Arctic Circle at the foot of the beautiful Billefjord on the Norwegian island of Spitsbergen, Pyramiden – a former Russian coal mining town, was once one of the Svalbard Archipelago’s most important and busiest settlements, but is now home to only a handful of people who dedicate their time to renovating the town and conserving the natural environment in which it is situated.

    However, as much of the town’s original infrastructure and buildings still exist, there is still much to see on a visit to this eerie settlement. The most ethereal feature is undoubtedly the ‘bottle shop’, a house made entirely from white and green glass bottles, whose beauty and delicacy is a bizarre contrast in the harsh climate.

    Large Soviet-era warehouses, living quarters and an old coal-fired power plant stand defiantly in the town centre and the network of empty mine shafts have been locked in time and offer a deep insight into the Soviet’s industrial past.

  • July 27th Nordenskiöldbreen, Norway

    The awe-inspiring Nordenskiöldbreen is one of Norway’s largest glaciers, a 16-mile-long, 6.8-mile-wide crumbling wall of glistening Arctic ice that dominates the landscape of the spectacular Isfjord and Billefjord.

    A Fred. Olsen cruise to Northern Norway and the remote Svalbard archipelago could include a memorable sail by Nordenskiöldbreen, affording you a rare opportunity to see this magnificent natural wonder in all its breathtaking scenic splendour.

  • July 27th Tempelfjorden, Norway

    Tempelfjorden is a fjord branch at the inner end of Sassenfjorden, a part of Isfjorden at Spitsbergen, Svalbard. It is located between Sabine Land and Bünsow Land. The fjord is named after the mountain Templet, which resembles a temple. Every winter, the sailing vessel Noorderlicht is intentionally frozen into Tempelfjorden.

  • July 28th Longyearbyen, Norway

    Situated at 78° north, deep within the Arctic Circle, Longyearbyen is widely regarded as the world's northernmost town. It is also the largest settlement in Svalbard, located amongst incredible Norwegian Arctic wilderness on the archipelago's largest island, Spitsbergen.

    Set at the end of the Advent Fjord, and framed by flat-topped, snow-covered peaks, Longyearbyen is home to some 2000 inhabitants, several reindeer and the odd polar bear. The town Longyearbyen was only established as a permanent settlement in 1906 to exploit local coal reserves, and is named after American mining specialist, John M. Longyear.

    Only one mine remains working, but Mine 3, which was turned into a living museum in 1996 on its closure, can still be visited. The museum guides are all former miners who give first-hand accounts about life underground. The Svalbard Museum also provides insights into the life of miners, and the other local industry, whaling. The 24-hour sundial reminds visitors that the sun doesn’t set for months during summer, and the Spitsbergen Airship Museum, which has exhibits from the era of polar exploration, is worth discovery.

  • July 30th Vesterålen, Norway

    Sortland, the largest town of the beautiful Vesterålen archipelago, is one of Northern Norway’s most unique destinations.

    Nicknamed ‘Blue Town’, Sortland is almost entirely painted in various shades of blue, thanks to any idea put forward by artist Bjorn Elvenes at the start of the new millennium. Elvenes proposed that – with the help of other local artists and residents – Sortland should become a living 3D painting, and today the town’s mix of architecture, comprising Swiss style wood, concrete and glass structures, is an exhibit of his vision. It’s worth exploring the town to see how the blue colour scheme is developing alone, though there are plenty of attractions such as interesting art exhibitions, a beautiful early 20th century church and the pretty downtown, where you can enjoy ‘Writings on a Field of Blue’.

    Visiting Sortland offers chances to seek-out Vesterålen's natural treasures, too. Rugged, unspoilt countryside landscapes and miles of gorgeous island coastline are within reach, while the archipelago and its surrounding waters are also home to diverse wildlife, from seals and seabirds to whales. In the summer months it is possible to experience the magical midnight sun here; and in the winter, visitors might be lucky enough to witness the awe-inspiring Northern Lights.

  • July 31st Black Glacier, Norway

    The famous Svartisen or 'Black Glacier' - spread out over an impressive 375 square kilometres - is the second largest glacier in Norway. The glacier is in fact divided into two seperate glaciers called the West Ice and the East Ice and a cruise past this fascinating natural wonder offers stunning views of Mother Nature at her finest.

  • July 31st Nordfjorden, Norway

    Rarely sailed on an ocean cruise itinerary, as it is only accessible to smaller ships such as those in the Fred. Olsen fleet, Nordfjorden – a glorious, simply breathtaking fjord in the heart of Norway’s Meloy Municipality – is a wonder that many people don’t have the privilege to see, explore and experience.

    But thankfully, on your scenic exploration, you’ll get to fully immerse yourself in the wonderland of awe-inspiring scenery, where glassy waters are flanked by magnificent, snow-capped mountains and glacial peaks, as your smaller-sized ship negotiates the narrow, imposing waterway.

  • August 1st Kristiansund, Norway

    Reaching out into the waters of Norway’s Western Cape on four, bridge-connected islands, the clean, open, operatic city of Kristiansund, and its stunning harbour, are impossible to ignore. Destroyed in the Second World War, nearly 80% of Kristiansund has been rebuilt since the 1940s. The city is now home to some of Norway’s most iconic modern architecture. Reminders of pre-war Kristiansund still remain, notably the city’s opera house – the oldest in Norway – which offers around 100 opera performances, an opera festival and an outdoor performance of Donna Bacalao every year.

    The local history of Klippfisk (salted cod) can be uncovered at the town’s unique museum, while many visitors opt to travel along the renowned Atlantic Road, one of Norway's most photographed driving roads.

    From Kristiansund, a trip to the nearby Grip Island, a prominent fishing settlement in the 15th and 16th centuries, is worth undertaking despite there being no permanent residents now. Exploring the abandoned villages and absorbing the eerie atmosphere of Grip Stave Church – built in 1470, is a must.

  • August 3rd Return to Rosyth, Scotland

    Edinburgh, Scotland's historic capital, is one of the U.K.'s finest cities. Combining beautiful architecture, engrossing cultures and an extensive heritage, this Scottish delight is a must-visit destination.

    From the UNESCO-listed Old Town & New Town districts within the city centre to the lush parks and rolling hills on the outskirts, Edinburgh is a city that begs to be explored, offering something for everyone.

    To see some of Scotland's most famous and beautiful sights, be sure to explore the historic Old Town quarter which is home to the city's magnificent castle, the famous Holyrood Royal residence, the parliament building and St Giles' Cathedral. Or if you prefer to indulge in a little retail therapy, you can wander the high-end stores and independent boutiques that line Princes Street, George Street and other areas in the New Town.

    Edinburgh is also renowned for its annual celebrations and events, including the world-famous Military Tattoo and New Years Hogmanay.

Customers Say

From £2799pp
15 Nights
Special Interest
Europe

Highlights:

  • Experience a taste of past and present life amongst the isolated lands of Spitsbergen
  • Explore abandoned towns, revel in the beauty of their Arctic landscapes and more
  • Witness the midnight sun and see astonishing natural wonders within the Arctic Circle

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