Jewels of the Arctic

Greg Mortimer Luxury Expidition Cruise Ship
Greg Mortimer
120 Passengers
Adventure Options

Jewels of the Arctic combines the best of Spitsbergen and Greenland, with a taste of Iceland. Our ship-based adventure takes us from Spitsbergen’s rugged northwest coast comprising of mountains, tundra and fjords – and hopefully a polar bear or two! We cross the icy waters of the Greenland Sea making our way to Greenland’s remote east coast of icecaps, fantastic icebergs and fairytale landscapes of granite spires rising 1000 metres about exquisite fjords! We also have the opportunity to experience Greenland’s local Inuit culture, before making our way to Iceland. This voyage also offers wonderful opportunities for tundra walking, exploring fjords by ship & Zodiac, and viewing dramatic landscapes and wildlife.

Spitsbergen
This wondrous archipelago of Svalbard is the world’s most readily accessible bit of the polar north and one of the most spectacular places imaginable. Meaning ‘Island of the cold shores’, Svalbard is located between 74° - 81° N and 10° - 35° E and has a total land mass of 63,000 square kilometers.

Spitsbergen is the largest island is the Svalbard island archipelago. It was named by Dutchman, Willem Barents in 1596, when he was on his way to Novaya Zemlya, searching for a northern route to Asia. The island was first used as a whaling base in the 17th and 18th centuries, after which it was abandoned. Coal mining started at the beginning of the 20th century, and several permanent communities were established. The Svalbard Treaty of 1920 recognizes Norwegian sovereignty and established Svalbard as a free economic zone and a demilitarized zone. With a population of approximately 3000, Spitsbergen is still virtually an unspoilt wilderness.

Greenland
Greenland is the world’s largest island, almost totally covered by the second largest icecap on earth, and boasts the world’s largest national park. Its east coast is sparsely settled by small communities of Inuit hunters who eke out a living in one of the harshest environments on earth. We will marvel at the complex geology of the oldest island in the world where we will see acres of gravel beaches, dumped by ice-age glaciers and intriguing flat-topped mesas striated with layers of ancient deposits rising dramatically between massive glaciers.

Iceland
Iceland is one of the world’s youngest islands. Forged by fire and honed by ice, it is a geological treasure trove. Reykjavik, the capital, is a clean, sophisticated and progressive city. It’s worth venturing further afield prior to the voyage to get a glimpse of life in times gone by - quaint fishing villages, turf houses and sturdy Icelandic ponies.

Voyage Highlights
• Look for hunting polar bears between Barentsøya and Edgeøya islands, a major polar bear migration route
• Visit the world’s largest national park in North East Greenland, and the world’s largest fjord system, Scoresbysund
• Cruise among the fantastic shapes and colors of Greenland’s famous giant icebergs
• Celebrate near-endless sunlight under the glistening midnight sun
• Visit a small isolated Greenlandic village, Ittoqqortoomiit

Brief Itinerary

Day 1 Embark Kirkenes
Days 2 & 3 At Sea
Day 4 East coast of Svalbard and Hinlopen Strait
Days 5 & 6 Greenland Sea
Days 7 to 13 East Coast of Greenland and Kaiser Franz Joseph Fjord system
Day 14 Denmark Strait
Day 15 Disembark Reykjavik

Day 1 — Embark Kirkenes

Arrive in Kirkenes, Norway and join a pre-arranged half day excursion or activity prior to boarding the Greg Mortimer late afternoon. Airport transfers will be included if arriving on preferred flights into Kirkenes. You’ll have time to settle into your cabin before our important briefings.

Days 2 & 3 — At Sea

Over the next two days at sea, enjoy informative and entertaining lectures from our expert expedition team including naturalists and historians before reaching Svalbard’s southeast coast.

Day 4 — East Coast Svalbard and Hinlopen Strait

As the Greg Mortimer passes between Spitsbergen and the smaller islands of Barentsøya and Edgeøya, we cross a major polar bear migration route and the beautiful fertile plains of Sundeneset. The spongy ground is richly covered with bright green mosses, a variety of delicate and colorful flowers, particularly the yellow marsh (bog) saxifrage, various mushrooms, fungi, clear bubbling streams and small tarns. Tiny (micro) flowers such as Mouse Ears grow in Spitsbergen creating fairy like mossy rock gardens. We look for polar bears hunting on pack ice and we may explore this beautiful terrain on foot, marveling at the contrast between the colorful soft ground and the barren, rocky terrain from further north. Reindeer antlers lie scattered along the ground.

If conditions allow we will pass through the narrow Hinlopen Strait. The strait is flanked by creamy colored slabs of rock that are rich in fossils. We may visit Alkefjellet in the Strait, where a series of one-hundred-meter-high dolerite towers are home to nearly a million nesting Brünnich’s guillemots – the penguins of the north – that occupy every available nook and cranny. Elsewhere we seek out eider ducks and geese, and hope to spot walrus, Arctic fox and the beautiful ivory gulls.

Days 5 & 6 — Greenland Sea and Pack Ice

As we cruise west across the Greenland Sea – the main outlet of the Arctic Ocean – we may encounter whales feeding in the productive waters of the north. Sightings of fin whales are common and blue whales have been seen in more recent years. As we begin to approach Greenland we will likely encounter the East Greenland pack ice, and if we are lucky we will see polar bears hunting for prey. The strong icy currents have isolated East Greenland from the Polar Basin, attracting large numbers of fish, seals and whales. Climatic conditions and the concentration of ice in the vicinity often create thick morning fog that vanishes with the onset of the midday sun. Our experts will inform and entertain us with fascinating discussions on plants, animals, ice, and early explorers like Nansen, Andree and Scoresby.

Conditions permitting, there may be a chance for kayakers to launch their sea kayaks and the rest of us to cruise in the sea ice with Zodiacs. Perhaps if we have had a good crossing, we may even have the opportunity to make our first landing on the Greenland coast, weather permitting. This stretch of coastline is ripe for exploration, with its many secrets locked in place by drift ice for up to eight months each year. Home to polar bear, snowy owl and musk ox, it's the world's largest national park, covering 972,000 square kilometers; most of which is inland ice and the rest a composite fjord landscape.

Days 7 to 13 — East Coast of Greenland including Kaiser Franz Josef Fjord and Scoresbysund

We will attempt to enter Kaiser Franz Josef Fjord, a remote and rarely visited fjord system with countless opportunities for exploration within the Northeast Greenland National Park. Cruising through Kong Oskar Fjord we will marvel at the geological beauty of the mountains and land in a few places to explore the landscape and wildlife of Greenland. We will then head south along the coast of Liverpool Land, with our passage dependent on ice conditions. We aim to reach Scoresbysund, the world’s largest fjord and a favorite hunting ground of the local Inuit. Massive glaciers dump into this fjord, the birthplace of the famous big Greenland icebergs. We hope to visit the remote Inuit community of Ittoqqortoormiit (Scoresby Town) and to hike across the tundra in search of ancient graveyards and summer villages occupied 3,000 years ago by Paleo-Eskimos. This area provides excellent opportunities for sea kayaking in its maze of calm, interconnecting waterways. We will keep a sharp eye out for musk oxen, Arctic hare and seals, and maybe if we are very lucky even a polar bear or narwhal. Scoresbysund offers many opportunities for walking cruising and kayaking so we will spend our days exploring the land, the ice and the sea. Other Landings along the coast may include:

Cape Humboldt – a beautiful point on Ymer Island. There is a good chance to take a tundra walk and witness musk oxen grazing. We will also keep a lookout for Arctic fox and ptarmigan. A lone trapper's hut looks over the bay and magnificent icebergs.

Blomsterbugten – An important site for paleo-eskimos and more modern trappers, we may have a great opportunity to walk in the tundra with musk oxen or Arctic hare to a spectacular overlook onto Lake Noa which is pink with fine sediments.

Sefstrom Glacier adorns the narrow-peaked waterway in Alpefjord. We will Zodiac cruise (and kayak) around the snout of the glacier and deeper into the fjord behind. We can return along magnificent cliffs that are festooned with small colorful gardens of Arctic flowers growing wherever water is available.

Ittoqqortoormiit is Scoresbysund’s colorful Inuit community of approximately 500 people. Feel free to explore the village, fascinating museum or sit quietly in the beautiful Lutheran Church. The people are friendly, and the young children vie for our attention from underneath their Arctic fox-fur jackets.

Sydkap in Scoresbysund offers good walking and delightful views up Øfjord and into Hall Brednung. Kayakers will have good opportunities to explore the lonely beaches. We may explore the ancient gravesites on shore, or nearby giant icebergs that offer hours of enjoyment for kayak and Zodiac excursions.

Røde Ø –one of the most remarkable collections of beautiful icebergs in the world. A combination of shallows near the island and tidal currents strand hundreds of large iceberg in a small area around Røde Ø, or Red Island. The contrast between the magnificent blue of the ice and the red sandstone landscape is breathtaking.

Other possible landing points in the area include: Rømer Fjord, Rypefjord, Ø Fjord, Fonfjord, Bjornøya, Milne Land, Hekla Havn, Denmark Island, Nordvestfjord and Eskimobugt.

Day 14 — Denmark Strait

In the Denmark Strait, we sail towards Iceland. Keep a lookout for whale blows and the many seabirds that trail our ship in the ever present Arctic winds. Enjoy the time to reflect on your recent adventures, share and exchange photos, and soak in the fresh ocean air. As we near Iceland, you will find we are returning to the rest of the world as we encounter fishing vessels working the coastal waters.

Day 15 — Disembark Reykjavik

During the early morning we arrive into Reykjavik. Farewell your expedition team and fellow expeditioners as we all continue our onward journeys. A transfer is included into town or onwards to the airport.

Note: Please refer to this itinerary as a guide only as changes may occur due to unpredictable sea and weather conditions.

* Itinerary may be subject to change

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Rates Arctic 2020
Aurora Stateroom
Balcony Stateroom
Balcony Suite
Junior Suite
Captain's Suite
Kayak
Save 20% (Prices in Red)
Excludes Captain's Suite
Expires Dec 31st 2018
$6,400$6,380$7,300$7,280$8,900$8,880$10,500$10,480$12,100 
Photography, Kayak
Save $1,250 (Prices in Red)
Excludes Aurora Stateroom
Expires Oct 31st 2018
$6,400Full$7,300$6,050Full$8,900$7,650Full$10,500$9,250Full$12,100$10,850Full
Photography, Kayak
Save $1,250 (Prices in Red)
Excludes Aurora Stateroom
Expires Oct 31st 2018
$6,400 $7,300$6,050$8,900$7,650Full$10,500$9,250Full$12,100$10,850
Photography, Kayak
$13,700 $15,600 $19,100 $22,500 $25,900 
Photography, Kayak
$8,800 $10,000 $12,300 $14,500 $16,700 
Photography, Kayak
Save $1,250 (Prices in Red)
Excludes Aurora Stateroom
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$8,2001 Berth$9,400$8,150$11,500$10,250$13,500$12,250Limited$15,600$14,350Full
Photography, Kayak
Save $1,250 (Prices in Red)
Excludes Aurora Stateroom
Expires Oct 31st 2018
$13,200 $15,000$13,750$18,500$17,250$21,700$20,450$25,100$23,850
Photography, Kayak
Save $1,250 (Prices in Red)
Excludes Aurora Stateroom
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$11,600 $13,300$12,050$16,300$15,050$19,200$17,950Limited$22,200$20,950Full
Kayak
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$13,000 $17,400$14,790$24,400 $28,700Limited$33,100 
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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.

International Airfare Not Included. Rates are per person, based on twin-share. Single costs are 1.7 times the twin rate in all cabin categories. Twin share, with no supplement, is available in Aurora Stateroom and Balcony Stateroom categories.

Adventure options must be pre-booked and paid for prior to start of the trip. Space is subject to availability. Some activities require experience.

Optional Activities: Kayaking $940 (Svalbard), $1,090 (FJL Explorer, Jewels of the Arctic, Arctic Discovery & Inuit Arctic and Beyond), $1,560 (High Arctic Adventure & Arctic Complete), Photography Free, Climbing $1,090 (Jewels of the Arctic & 'Arctic Complete).

Note: "Inuit Arctic and Beyond" is open for 160 passengers instead of the usual 120.

Mandatory Emergency Evacuation Insurance Required. All trips subject to possible fuel surcharge.

DeckPlan_GregMortimer-ship
DeckPlan_GregMortimer-decks
DeckPlan_GregMortimer-key

   Captain's Suite
500 Sq Ft / 46.3 m² including balcony
Deck 4
Twin or double bed • Private en-suite • Full size window • Desk area • Closet space • Private balcony • Sofa bed (can sleep 3rd passenger) • Room-controlled thermostat • Safe for storing valuables • Separate lounge area • 42" flat-screen TV
   Junior Suite
475 Sq Ft / 44.4 m² including balcony
Deck 7
Twin or double bed • Private en-suite • Full size window • Desk area • Closet space • Private balcony • Sofa bed (can sleep 3rd passenger) • Room-controlled thermostat • Safe for storing valuables • 42" flat-screen TV • Separate lounge area
   Balcony Suite
385 Sq Ft / 35.8 m² including balcony
Deck 4
Twin or double bed • Private en-suite • Full size window • Desk area • Closet space • Private balcony • Room-controlled thermostat • Safe for storing valuables • 42" flat-screen TV
   Balcony Stateroom
250-310 Sq Ft / 23.1-28.9 m² including balcony
Decks 4 & 6
Twin or double bed • Private En-suite • Floor to ceiling window • Desk area • Closet space • Private balcony • Sofa bed (can sleep 3rd passenger in select cabins) • Room-controlled thermostat • Safe for storing valuables • 42" flat-screen TV
   Aurora Stateroom
250 Sq Ft / 23.2 m²
Deck 3
Twin or double bed • Private En-suite • Porthole window • Desk area • Closet space • Sofa bed (can sleep 3rd passenger in select cabins) • Room-controlled thermostat • Safe for storing valuables • 42" flat-screen TV