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14-Nights Arctic Cruise Adventure: Norway, Greenland & Iceland - Luxury Expedition Cruises
14 nights from $14995 per person
Oslo, Norway’s capital and largest city, is encircled by wooded hills and snowcapped peaks. The city displays a mixture of several architectural styles. A full range of activities includes art galleries, museums, restaurants, theaters and nightclubs. Other points of interest include Royal Palace; Frogner Park, known for its famous Vigeland sculptures; Holmenkollen, where international skiing events take place; imposing Åkershus Castle; and Bygdøy Peninsula, home to some of Oslo’s most important museums. Many attractions can be explored on foot. Oslo's City Hall ranks as the most distinctive part of Oslo’s waterfront. The art portrays the country's different historical and domestic phases. Munch Museum, which is dedicated to the life work of Norway’s famous painter, contains more than 5,000 drawings and paintings. National Gallery has the nation’s largest collection of Norwegian art and some of Munch’s best-known works. Åkershus Fortress & Castle, transformed into a Renaissance palace in the 17th century, houses Norway’s Resistance Museum.
The fire, frost and water symbolized by the red, white and blue of Iceland’s flag are manifested in this land. Reykjavik, or Smoky Bay, was so named in 874 A.D. by Ingolf Arnarson when he sighted the numerous hot springs on the Seltjarnarnes Peninsula. Today this remarkably pollution-free city is wrapped around a sweeping bay and has managed to retain its charming Old-World atmosphere. A pastiche of red-blue-and green-roofed houses together with the tall gray tower of Hallgrim’s Church dominate the skyline. In Old Town, many of the wooden buildings have been lovingly restored and stand side by side with modern timber and concrete structures. There are fine museums and art galleries; historic pubs present activity in late afternoon. The beautiful countryside outside of Reykjavik includes such natural wonders as volcanoes, geysers, glaciers, mountains and spectacular waterfalls.
Greenland remains a land of fantastical and semi-mythical proportions, with aurora borealis, the vast tundra, glittering columns of ice, monstrous glaciers that calve icebergs into the sea and the proverbially tight-lipped Inuit. Ever since 15th-century explorers returned from the distant north with wild and woolly tales of a remote region of brutish hairy pygmies, unicorns, mind-bending visions and citadels of ice, Ultima Thule has been the fantasy of all fantasies. Poets from Virgil and Pytheas to Henry Wadsworth Longfellow have celebrated it in verse; the Weimar Republic used it as a template for one of their mythic Nordic-Germanic societies; and big-haired '70s rock bands, with a penchant for heavy feedback and fuzzy guitar solos, have used it as a clarion call to youthful rebellion.
Known for its stark mountain peaks and spectacular glaciers, Longyearbyen was named for the American John Monroe Longyear, who established a mining operation here in 1906. In the summer season, many species of birds can be found nesting in the steep cliffs while the seaside harbors a number of marine animals from white whales, seals and walruses. In the small town, are museums, local shops and restaurants to explore at a leisurely pace.
Hornstandir is a stunning wilderness reserve in the Westfjords, Iceland. The coastline features towering sea cliffs populated by birds and an abundance of seals, while the interior is crawling with glaciers and ancient mountain passages. Arctic foxes, lush meadows covered with flowers, majestic cliffs, deep fjords and vast remote bays make Hornstrandir a real paradise for all hikers and nature lovers.
Svalbard is an archipelago lying in the Arctic Ocean north of mainland Europe, about midway between Norway and the North Pole. It consists of a group of islands ranging from 74° to 81° North, and 10° to 35° East. The archipelago is the northernmost part of the Kingdom of Norway. Three islands are populated: Spitsbergen, Bjørnøya and Hopen. The largest settlement is Longyearbyen.
Settled by the Norse in the 7th century, the Westman Islands are composed of dramatic coastlines, shaped by numerous volcanic events throughout their history. Surtsey is the newest island, emerging in 1963 after several eruptions shaped new land. Heimaey is the only inhabited island and is dotted with colorful homes along the base of wild seacliffs and green landscapes. You can tour the island's rugged coastline and see orcas, puffin colonies, and the seacave Kettshellur. Every August, the island comes alive with the Westman Islands Festival, with bonfires and live music 24/7.
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Explore the tiny port of Akranes and travel to Langjokull, the thrilling glacier!
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