The Arctic Experience: 5 Best Arctic Cruises
For an Arctic experience, there are many countries and styles of travel to choose from. Expeditions Online have years of experience in Arctic exploration, so here's our list of the five best Arctic adventures!
When you first consider embarking on an Arctic adventure, you might not realise the range of countries and types of trips you can choose between. Luckily, we’ve experienced them all so can reveal five of the best Arctic adventures meaning you can spend less of your precious time researching and more time experiencing the magic of the Arctic, whether that involves seeing a polar bear in the flesh, sipping glacial water fresh from a stream, or discovering the wonders of the Arctic under the midnight sun.
We believe the best way to explore this remote region is onboard one of the Arctic expedition cruises and we encourage readers to browse through the range of cruises and expeditions on offer. Sailing through this enchanted icy landscape onboard a small expedition ship enables you to get up close and personal with the unique wildlife that inhabits this seemingly inhospitable land and to really appreciate your size in the vast open space of the Arctic.
An Arctic Cruise in Svalbard
Just a few hours north of Oslo lies Svalbard and the Spitsbergen Archipelago, a region abundant with Arctic wildlife and impressive scenery that makes it one of the most popular regions for Arctic cruises. Start your Arctic journey in the colourful, quirky town on Longyearbyen before climbing aboard your small expedition ship to seek out polar bears on the pack ice, witness mammoth colonies of seabirds nesting on cliff faces, and to explore the isolated islands peppering the Arctic Ocean while learning about the history of whalers and the changing climate of this region. Svalbard has a lot to offer visitors and it has the advantage of not being as remote as many other destinations in the Arctic circle. If you're interested, check out our Svalbard Arctic cruises.
An Arctic Cruise in Greenland
In Greenland, you can visit during the winter to witness the natural phenomenon of the Northern Lights or during the summer, which enjoys 24 hours of daylight, allowing you to discover Arctic wildlife at all hours of the day and night. However, given the extreme weather in the winter, most cruises and expeditions to the Arctic tend to only occur in the summer. This means that all of the Greenland cruises available here at Expeditions Online occur during the summer. Greenland is an incredible place: travel through breathtaking fjords, marvel at the magnificent colours of huge icebergs floating in the sea, and encounter unique Inuit settlements along the way. Greenland cruises can easily be combined with North American adventures, Iceland or Svalbard cruises.
An Arctic Cruise in Canada
Canada provides travellers with year-round Arctic tourism opportunities, but perhaps some of the best experiences here are those on the water. Being home to a number of resident and migratory whale species, you will be able to witness and photograph belugas in their thousands and look out for captivating narwhals, the unicorns of the sea. Northern Canada has a sense of scale and adventure unlike anywhere else on Earth. Just make sure you bring your good camera! Follow in the footsteps of some of the most famous Arctic explorers during your own Arctic adventure tour in Canada. If this sounds like the perfect trip, browse our range of Canadian Arctic cruises.
An Arctic Cruise in Russia
Perhaps best suited to avid polar explorers, your Russian Arctic cruise will certainly be an adventure. With so much to explore off the coast of Russia, you could return here time and time again and still enjoy new experiences. It's difficult to think of a larger, wilder place in the entire Arctic Circle. You may like to opt for a voyage through Franz Josef Land, a journey across the Barents Sea or to spend some time discovering the wildlife and landscapes of Wrangell Island, Kamchatka or the Siberian coastline. Russia's northern coastline is one of the most elusive and mysterious places in the world — come discover it with us!
An Expedition to the North Pole
For the epitome of Arctic Circle trips, you’ll want to choose a North Pole expedition. These voyages allow you to be one of very few who get to experience the wonder of standing on top of the world, walking around each of the time zones within minutes. While a North Pole expedition is a fun, worthwhile experience, it's not lighthearted fun, and it's not for the faint-hearted; it's a true expedition for true intrepid explorers. If you decide to make the ultimate journey to the North Pole, not only will you enjoy an Arctic cruise abundant in wildlife en route to the pole, but you’ll also be able to take that once-in-a-lifetime photo, right at the North Pole — a boast right up there with climbing Everest!
Adventure expeditions aboard small ships allow you to be environmentally conscious in this ever more vulnerable environment, taking care when moving through the pack ice and making a minimal impact on the wildlife around you. For a little more luxury you can choose a larger ship, although these often have lower ice classifications meaning you may not be able to venture as far into the ice floes.
We hope this guide has inspired one or two readers to make the leap and start planning their voyage of a lifetime. If you'd like to get the best deal possible, you may like to keep a watchful eye on our Arctic cruise deals and offers. This page offers a range of early bird or last-minute deals on our Arctic cruises; it's the best way to get a discount on the most important trip of your life! If you have any questions about our Arctic cruises, please don't hesitate to get in touch. Start planning your next big adventure!
Expeditions Online Newsletter
Sign up to be an Expeditions Online insider and receive info on exclusive deals, discounts and more!