Canada's East Coast - Fins and Fiddles

Ioffe Cruise Ship
Ioffe
96 Passengers
Adventure Options

The islands of Canada’s Atlantic coast feature a rich and diverse culture, found in small fishing communities and remote out ports. The area is well known for its Celtic traditions and the music and cuisine of the region is celebrated the world over. Historically, this is one of the most fascinating places in North America.

Our exploration of Eastern Canada’s Maritime region starts and ends in the historical town of Louisbourg, situated on Cape Breton Island. The region also offers a staggering abundance of wildlife, including prolific birdlife, numerous seal and whale species and we even encounter the fabled wild horses of Sable Island. Beaches and lagoons provide viewing opportunities for numerous shorebirds and as we cruise towards the mouth of the St Lawrence River, we hope to see the great baleen whales such as the humpback, minke and blue whale - as well as grey and harp seals. These rich feeding grounds act as a magnet for wildlife.

A ship-based exploration allows us to visit places that are otherwise inaccessible or difficult to get to for land-based visitors, all achieved within a manageable time frame. Daily shore excursions with expert guides, a range of wonderful activities and an inspired dining menu make this an ideal way to experience this enchanting region of Canada.

Brief Itinerary

Day 1 Louisbourg, Nova Scotia, Canada
Day 2 Sable Island National Park, Nova Scotia
Day 3 Bird Island and Englishtown, Nova Scotia
Day 4 Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island
Day 5 Les Iles-de-la-Madeleine (The Magdalen Islands), Quebec
Day 6 Isle Bonaventure (Bonaventure Island) and the Gaspé Peninsula, Quebec
Day 7 Anticosti Island, Quebec
Day 8 Gros Morne National Park and Woody Point, Newfoundland
Day 9 Francois, Newfoundland
Day 10 Saint-Pierre et Miquelon, France
Day 11 Louisbourg, Nova Scotia

Day 1 — Louisbourg, Nova Scotia, Canada

Our adventure begins in the historic port town of Louisbourg, Nova Scotia, where we board our expedition vessel, the Akademik Ioffe. First visited in 1597 by the English, the town was fortified in 1713 by the French in recognition of its strategic maritime location. During the 18th century, Louisbourg was the third busiest seaport in North America. We board the ship in the late afternoon in time for a dinner of fresh, local lobster as we sail out past the lighthouse, into the North Atlantic - and onto the Grand Banks.

Day 2 — Sable Island National Park, Nova Scotia

Located on the edge of the Grand Banks, hundreds of kilometers from the coast, Sable Island has a storied history as a graveyard of ships, with more than 350 ships falling victim to the treacherous currents and sandbars. Sporadically inhabited by sealers, shipwreck survivors and salvagers, the island is now home to fewer than six year-round inhabitants, a herd of wild horses and one of the largest gray seal colonies in the world. It is an important stopover for numerous migratory bird species as they make their way to and from the High Arctic regions. Sable Island forms one of Canada’s newest national parks and we explore the long sand beaches.

Day 3 — Bird Island and Englishtown, Nova Scotia

We return to Cape Breton and continue our exploration of this beautiful island by stopping in Englishtown. We have a few options in this area. The Atlantic Puffins and Razorbills on BirdIsland might call us as we put the Zodiacs down in the water, or perhaps heading into the community of Englishtown will be of interest. The Gaelic College in Cape Breton is a short bus ride away from the beach where we disembark. The region can be explored by sea kayak, stand up paddle board, Zodiac or bicycle–all alongside our expert guides and naturalists who will share their excitement for the destination along the way.

Day 4 — Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island

In September of 1864, representatives from the British Colonies in North America met in Charlottetown to discuss Confederation. On July 1st, 1867, the Dominion of Canada came into being. Today, we anchor just offshore Prince Edward Island near the town of North Rustico. From here we can split off in several directions. A tour into Charlottetown for those interested in a day in town is an option, or perhaps a visit to Green Gables, or spend a few hours at the island’s famous Cavendish beach (with a mandatory sampling of Cows Ice Cream!) Another enticing option could be a leisurely bicycle ride along the Confederation Trail or the Coastal Drive. A round of golf on one of the islands celebrated golf courses, or a kayak paddle in Rustico Bay. You will be welcomed back to the ship for a dinner of fresh Atlantic seafood as we travel north to the Magdalen Islands.

Day 5 — Les Iles-De-La-Madeleine (The Magdalen Islands), Quebec

Sculpted out of sandstone, these islands in the Gulf of St. Lawrence are home to unique fishing communities with beautifully maintained waterfront houses and boats, flowing grassy plains and sandstone shorelines sculpted by the elements. In addition to the traditional fishing and sealing culture found in the islands, we will encounter a wide diversity of bird and sea life.

Europeans first discovered the islands in the mid 15th century, though it’s thought indigenous Miíkmaqs had been visiting for centuries to hunt walrus. Quebecois and Acadian culture runs strongly through the towns and villages of the islands, through local cuisine, craft and language. The island’s gentle terrain is a cyclist’s paradise, while the sea kayaking and stand up paddle boarding through sea arches and into sandstone sea caves is superb. Otherwise you might enjoy a whale-watching cruise in the Zodiacs or head to the beach to soak up some sun or build sand castles!

Day 6 — Isle Bonaventure (Bonaventure Island) and the Gaspé Peninsula, Quebec

At Bonaventure Island we drop the anchor near the town of Percé and explore the island by Zodiac. This location has a rich natural, historic, and geological heritage. Sculpted over time by the sea, the island is situated at the tip of the Gaspé Peninsula. The outstanding flora and fauna, including its famous colony of Northern Gannets make it a must-see location. Almost 300 different species of birds have been recorded as visiting, migrating to, or living on Bonaventure Island. An afternoon visit to the community of Percé will provide a window into the rich fishing culture of French-Canada. Zodiac cruising, sea kayaking and stand up paddle boarding are all activities that can be undertaken here, weather permitting.

Day 7 — Anticosti Island, Quebec

At the mouth of the St. Lawrence River where the river water mixes with Arctic waters from the Strait of Belle Isle and the more temperate Atlantic waters, Anticosti Island is rich in marine wildlife. We plan to hike along the beaches near the eastern end of the island followed by a Zodiac cruise along the cliffs at East Point. We hope to observe several species of shorebirds and seabirds as well as whales and seals, which are frequent visitors to the island's waters. Bald eagles soaring along the shoreline, deer in the woods and whales just offshore are all common sights in this location.

Day 8 — Gros Morne National Park and Woody Point, Newfoundland

Sailing into majestic Bonne Bay, in the heart of Gros Morne National Park, the cliffs soar up out of the water and are covered in a green blanket of tuckamore forest – windswept spruce sculpted by the ocean breeze. At Woody Point we are welcomed ashore by a delegation from the community before hiking up to the excellent interpretation center. From there, various guided walks take us into the World Heritage-listed Tablelands and to the lookout for a view over much of the park – a spectacular experience! A boreal wetland landscape, featuring dramatic rock ridges, pitcher plants, white-throated sparrows and perhaps even a moose could all be encountered as we explore the park. The twisting mountain road to Trout River makes for a challenging bike ride with our guides or a paddle along the shore of Bonne Bay in the sea kayaks provide yet another memorable activity.

Day 9 — Francois, Newfoundland

The community of Francois (pron. Fran-sway) on the south coast of Newfoundland - was settled in the late 1700s. Small boat fishers harvested a variety of species during the summer fishing season. Francois’s rich fishing heritage also included operation of a whale factory in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Known as an ‘out-port’, and accessible only by boat or from the air by helicopter, Francois has a deep harbor which is navigable year-round. When entering Francois harbor, we are first greeted by one of the few remaining manned light stations anywhere on the coast of Newfoundland. Once past the light, the narrow opening leading into the steep-walled rocky fjord amazes us. This is a spectacular location and for many, a highlight of the trip.

Day 10 — Saint-Pierre et Miquelon, France

Saint-Pierre et Miquelon are a small group of islands situated off the south coast of Newfoundland. They were first settled by the French in the early 17th century and today, the islands represent the sole remaining vestige of France’s once vast North American empire. Walking down the streets feels like taking a stroll through a provincial French town. As a part of France, the area has much in common with Europe, but also with its Canadian and American neighbors. There's an excellent puffin colony here and, if weather permits, we cruise in the Zodiacs to see these colorful birds. Tonight we enjoy a special dinner attended by the captain to mark the end of our voyage through Canada’s spectacular Atlantic provinces.

Day 11 — Louisbourg, Nova Scotia

We sail back to Cape Breton across the mouth of the Gulf of St. Lawrence, heading again for the historic port of Louisbourg. We will disembark in the morning and, while some of us will head to the airport, many will add a few extra days in Cape Breton to enjoy one of the gems of Canada’s East Coast.

Note: Polar exploration can be unpredictable. Specific sites visited will depend on prevailing weather and ice conditions at the time of sailing. The above itinerary should be read as a ‘guide only’ and may change. The ship’s captain in conjunction with the expedition leader continually review the sailing plan throughout the voyage, making adjustments to the itinerary along the way to take advantage of optimal weather and ice conditions or to maximize our encounters with wildlife. Decades of experience spent exploring these waterways mean we have a large number of outstanding landing sites and Zodiac cruising locations to consider, even when the weather conditions may not be ideal. A flexible approach is something we encourage you to bring to the ship.

* Itinerary may be subject to change

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Per Person USD
Rates Arctic 2018
Main Deck Triple
Twin Semi-Private
Twin Private
Superior
Shackleton Suite
One Ocean Suite
Charter
Air
Kayak
Kayaking Free on this Voyage

Complimentary pre-voyage Hotel plus
$150 Bar Credit
Expires Apr 30th 2018
$3,395 $4,395Limited$5,695Full$6,395Limited$7,795Limited$9,395Full 
Kayak
Kayaking Free on this Voyage

Complimentary pre-voyage Hotel plus
$150 Bar Credit
Expires Apr 30th 2018
$3,395Full$4,395Full$5,695Full$6,395Full$7,795Full$9,395Full 
Kayak
Charter Air: Iqaluit/Ottawa

$750 Discount on Charter Air
(Prices in Red) Expires Apr 30th 2018

Note: An additional 5% Canadian GST will be assessed on all associated trip costs.
$3,695Full$4,695Full$6,295Full$6,795Full$8,295Full$9,895Full$995$245
Kayak
Charter Air: Ottawa/Iqaluit & Resolute/Edmonton

$750 Discount on Charter Air
(Prices in Red) Expires Apr 30th 2018

Note: An additional 5% Canadian GST will be assessed on all associated trip costs.
$7,295 $8,295Limited$9,895Full$10,395Full$11,895Full$13,495Full$1,995$1,245
Kayak
Charter Air: Edmonton/Resolute/Edmonton

$750 Discount on Charter Air
(Prices in Red) Expires Apr 30th 2018

Note: An additional 5% Canadian GST will be assessed on all associated trip costs.
$6,795 $7,795Limited$9,395Limited$10,095Limited$11,395Limited$12,995 $1,995$1,245
Kayak
Charter Air: Edmonton/Resolute & Cambridge Bay/Edmonton

$750 Discount on Charter Air
(Prices in Red) Expires Apr 30th 2018

Note: An additional 5% Canadian GST will be assessed on all associated trip costs.
$6,795 $7,795Full$9,395Full$10,095Limited$11,395Full$12,995Full$1,995$1,245
Kayak
Charter Air: Edmonton/Cambridge Bay & Iqaluit/Ottawa

$750 Discount on Charter Air
(Prices in Red) Expires Apr 30th 2018

Note: An additional 5% Canadian GST will be assessed on all associated trip costs.
$9,595 $11,395Limited$13,695 $14,695 $16,095Limited$17,095Full$1,995$1,245
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Click on the tour dates in the left column to view a trip itinerary. Point MOUSE at Cabin Category to view DETAILED description.

A 5% GST tax applies to all travel on the domestic Canadian voyages and will be calculated on the full voyage cost including charter flights, hotel, and kayaking. 

Rates are per person, based on twin-share. Single Supplement for twin cabins is 1.5 times the twin rate & single supplement for suites is double the suite rate.

All cabins are smoke-free. Smoking is only permitted in designated areas.
Trip cost does not include Mandatory Charter Flights listed in pricing chart.
Airfare to/from destination is not included.

Kayaking option available for $695 per person. Kayaking is complimentary on 'Canada's East Coast' departures.
Adventure options must be pre-booked and paid for prior to start of the trip. Space is subject to availability. Some activities require experience.

All trips subject to possible fuel surcharge.
Mandatory Emergency Evacuation insurance is required on all trips.

DeckPlan_Ioffe_b

   One Ocean Suite
Located on deck 5 this cabin is separated into two very spacious rooms. A spacious lounge area is perfect for relaxation and features a sofa (convertible to bed), large table, writing desk, ample storage, plus large picture windows overlooking the bow (forward facing) that can be opened. The separate bedroom features a double bed with upgraded linen/ pillows, night light, and window over the port side of the ship. The bathroom has a bathtub and shower. There is also a region specific iPad, mini stereo, capsule coffee maker, fully stocked mini bar, iPod alarm clock with audio line and several arms chairs.
   Shackleton Suites
Located on decks 4 and 5 these cabins are separated into two spacious rooms, one that is ideal for relaxation with a sofa (convertible to bed), large table, writing desk, chair, ample storage and a large window that can be opened. A separate private bedroom has a double berth with upgraded linen/pillows, night light, private facilities, a region specific iPad, mini stereo, capsule coffee maker, fully stocked mini bar, iPod alarm clock with audio line.
   Superior Cabins
These very large cabins are located on deck 6, and feature two lower berths, a loveseat, writing desk and chair, ample storage and private washroom facilities. All cabins have a window that can be opened. These cabins provide great access to the outer observation decks and ship’s bridge.
   Twin Private Cabins
Located on decks 4 and 5 these spacious, well-appointed cabins feature two lower berths, with private washroom facilities (sink, shower, toilet and bathroom cabinet). There are tall wardrobes with internal shelving for storage, a writing desk, chair, bookshelf, and a window that can be opened.
   Twin Semi-Private Cabins
Located on deck 4 these cabins have two lower berths, one of which can be converted to a sofa during the day. These cabins have tall wardrobes with internal shelving for storage, a writing desk, chair, bookshelf, and a window that can be opened. Facilities are semi-private – meaning you share the washroom with the adjacent cabin.
   Main Deck Triple Cabins
Located on deck 3 these cabins feature two lower berths and one upper berth. One lower berth can be converted to a comfortable sofa during the day. Washroom facilities are shared. There is a washbasin in the cabin, a writing desk and chair and ample storage for all cabin occupants. These cabins are efficient and well-appointed with two portholes with the option to open one.

 

Cabin and Voyage Inclusions            
Outside View With Opening Porthole/Window
Complimentary use of Wet Weather Gear
Complimentary use of Wellington Boots
Complimentary use of Waterproof Backpack and Binoculars
Innovative Dream Sleep Package
100% Cotton Bathrobes
Custom Blend Natural Canadian Made Essential Oil Amenities
Custom Color Coordinated Canadian Made Linen Package
Black Out Curtains
Clock Radio with Media Connector
Desk with Chair
Complimentary Water Bottle
In-Room Coffee & Tea Station
In-Room Private Field Guide    
In-Room Private Reference Library      
In-Room Mini Bar        
In-Room iPad Preloaded With Reference And Fictional Content        
In-Room Single Brew Coffee System        
In-Room Mini Stereo        
Complimentary Welcome Package (Wine, Fruit Basket, Natural Snacks)        
Complimentary Field Guide to the High Arctic        
Early Morning Adventure Concierge Coffee Service