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Northwest Passage - Franklin's High Arctic

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Northwest Passage - Franklin's High Arctic 17 days aboard Ocean Adventurer

Prices From £7,400pp
10 SEP, 2019 | 16 nights

Northwest Passage - Franklin's High Arctic 17 days aboard Ocean Adventurer

An epic 17 day adventure following in the footsteps of the historic explorer Sir John Franklin, through the icy channels of the fabled Northwest Passage. Setting sail from Resolute and sailing along the remote coast of Ellesmere Island you will explore Beechey Island and Smith Sound in the Canadian High Arctic before an exploration of western Greenland. Heading south along the coast you will visit remote Inuit communities and witness spectacular sights such as Disko Bay and the impressive Ilulissat Icefjord.

The tale of Sir John Franklin has captured the imagination of history lovers for years and this expedition will focus on Franklin and his crew’s fateful journey through these waters in 1845-46. Coupled with spectacular scenery, unique wildlife encounters and Zodiac cruises and hiking excursions to explore the deep fjords, ancient glaciers and countless icebergs of these remote lands, this is an opportunity not to be missed!

Please note: a mandatory transfer package of £2100 applies to this itinerary

Toni Hart

Namibia Birding and Photography Guide

An accomplished and experienced Namibia birding and photographic guide, Toni holds a Namibia Academy for Tourism and Hospitality Level 3 qualification (the highest level attainable in Namibia) and is widely renowned for her extensive knowledge of the cultures, ornithology, flora, astronomy and wildlife of the country. Read more >

Andy Pollard

Wildlife Guide & Photographer

Andy is a 6th generation Falkland Islander, with a passion for wildlife, plants and photography. Raised in the Falkland Islands, Andy developed a close affinity with the Islands natural environment at a young age. School holidays where spent in the ‘camp’ or countryside with friends and family. For more than 10 years, Andy had the privilege of spending a time on Sea Lion Island, visiting his mother who managed one of the Islands premier tourist destinations. Read more >

Chris Coe

Photographer and founder of the Travel Photographer Of The Year awards

A fascination with natural light and a passion with nature, landscape and travel underpin Chris Coe's photography. His images often have a striking simplicity and graphic quality. More recent work has introduced a subtlety with experimentation with both movement and light.Read more >

Jenny Luxton

Falklands Expert & Guide

Born in Chartres in the West Falklands, Jenny grew up on the family farm where her love for animals was nurtured by the25,000 sheep, horses and cows that lived alongside her. Forever a nature, conservation and wildlife enthusiast Jenny has travelled extensively throughout the Falkland Islands, visiting each and every wildlife island at least once, and even travelling around some by yacht. Read more >

Doug Allan

Special Guest Lecturer

Exclusive to this voyage, Doug Allan, a multi award winning polar photographer and cameraman, will be your special guest lecturer. Doug has been on over 20 expeditions to Svalbard to film its wildlife, and knows the wonders of this area more than most. Read more >

Chris Weston

Special Guest Photography Guide

Chris was 32 when he finally realised he really did want to be a photo-journalist and walked out on his career in IT sales to become a wildlife photographer Read more >


  • Spectacular and varied Arctic scenery
  • Land, marine and avian wildlife
  • Kayaking option
  • Historic associations
  • Inuit culture

What's Included

  • Full board accommodation on board ship
  • Programme of expert lectures
  • Guided Zodiac and shore excursions
  • Expedition parka
  • Loan of rubber boots
  • Mandatory transfer package includes: Hotel stays in Ottawa pre and post departure, charter flight from Ottawa to Resolute & Kangerlussuaq to Ottawa, and all transfers
Michael Gardiner
Michael Gardiner
Arctic Specialist

Speak to someone who’s been to Arctic. Start planning your tailor - made trip by calling one of our friendly destination specialists on 0800 195 3385 or 44 1625 581143 for outside the UK.


16 Nights   17 Days
Ottawa, Canada

Ottawa, Canada

Arrive at anytime. Spend time enjoying the sights of this vibrant capital city.

Overnight accommodation provided as part of mandatory transfer package.



This morning you will board your charter flight to Resolute. Upon arrival in Resolute, you will have time to take a walk around this small Arctic town before enjoying your first of many Zodiac cruises as you’re transferred to your ship. Settle in to the comfortable surroundings of your home for the next 14 nights and prepare for the epic adventures that lie ahead.

Canada's High Arctic
3 - 6Days

Canada's High Arctic

Canada’s High Arctic is an area rich with historic associations and our first stop will be a visit to the Canadian National Historic Site of Beechey Island. Beechey Island is the final resting place of three members of Sir John Franklin’s ill-fated 1845–46 expedition to find the Northwest Passage, and we will take the time to pay our respects to these men and learn more about their journey.

Cruising east we will visit Radstock Bay, a popular research location for observing polar bears, which are often seen here in summer. An impressive Thule archaeological site provides insight into how these pre- Inuit people lived in the Far North.

On the north of Baffin Island is the ancient Inuit settlement of Arctic Bay which will be our next stop. For almost 5,000 years, this hamlet and its surrounding area has been occupied by Inuit nomads migrating from the west. Surrounded by soaring cliffs teeming with seabirds, this is a great spot to go ashore and learn about the Inuit community’s traditional way of life. At the eastern end of Lancaster Sound we will find Devon Island and Dundas Harbour where there are excellent hiking opportunities. We will anchor at Croker Bay and take a Zodiac cruise along the face of an active glacier. We’ll try to keep a safe distance, but still hope to get close enough to appreciate the splendour of calving ice. Walrus frequent the waters here, so be sure to have your camera handy.

Our final shore visit in the Canadian High Arctic will be Grise Fjord which is Canada’s northernmost settlement which is home to about 150 residents. In this traditional, mostly Inuit community hunting and fishing are a significant part of their way of life. Visit the monument to the first Inuit settlers, as well as the remnants of the “old camp” where they lived.

Smith Sound
7 - 8Days

Smith Sound

Cruising through the uninhabited passage which separates Canada's Ellesmere Island from Greenland we will, weather conditions permitting, attempt to cruise as far north as possible to explore both sides of Smith Sound. We say goodbye to Canada and head towards Greenland.



The first stop in Greenland will be Qaanaaq. Formerly known as Thule, Qaanaaq is one of the northernmost towns in the world. We will come ashore and visit the local Inuit community to learn more about their culture and traditions. We will also visit the interesting museum here which will help to shed more light on what it’s really like to live near the top of the world.

At Sea

At Sea

Sailing along the west coast of Greenland keep an eye out on deck for wildlife, join one of the informative lectures and presentations from your on-board experts, or take the time to collate the many pictures you will have taken in the Canadian High Arctic.

West Greenland
11 - 15Days

West Greenland

Sailing south down Greenland's west coast, we encounter spectacular glaciers, deep fjords and colourful, local communities, such as Nuussuaq and Uummannaq. The latter is overlooked by a spectacular red heart-shaped mountain. The jagged, blue-tinged glacier at Eqip Sermia is one of the most beautiful sights in Greenland, which we visit on the way to the World Heritage Site of Ilulisaat. Here, at the mouth of the fjord, sit and watch as glacial ice flows into the sea, a truly memorable experience.

At Sisimiut, we watch a traditional kayak demonstartion as well as spending time in the town with its surviving 18th century buildings, which includes the oldest surviving church in Greenland. Our last excursion may be a hike around the Itilleq Fjord.



Arrival into Kangerlussuaq fjord marks the end of our adventurous North West Passage cruise. Disembark by Zodiac and transfer to the airport for your flight to Ottawa. Overnight accommodation in Ottawa is included as part of your transfer package.



After breakfast, you are free to explore the city or head to the airport for return or onward travel.

A view from Above

Ocean Adventurer

View Vessel

What Our Customers

Ann Macleod, Scotland Sarah & David, Portsmouth James and Pamela Chapman, Halifax Geoff & Magda, Adelaide, Australia Ann & Paul, East Grinstead, Sussex Chris Janner, Manchester Gavin Burnett Stirling, United Kingdom Chris Pye, North Wales Chris Pye, North Wales Chris Conlan, Manchester, UK Boyan Todorov, Holland Karen Worton, Suffolk,UK Malcolm Green , UK Malcolm Green , UK Frances Hadfield, East Sussex, UK Mike Unwin, Brighton, UK Christine Matthews, London, UK Jan Broderick, Northumberland
Superlatives abound – a truly amazing experience...awesome. Thanks to all for making it such a memorable experience.
We have just returned from our Spitsbergen trip with Wildfoot and had to tell you what an amazing time we had! We saw 6 polar bears including a mother with 2 cubs as well as whales, walruses and lots of birds. The ship (Expedition) was really comfortable and the guides were so helpful and friendly. Thank you so much for making it all so easy.
I came to Wildfoot because a friend had booked with you when you were Antarctica Bound and they were right. Everything went perfectly, even when our flight was cancelled, you made sure we still made it to the ship with time to spare. L’Austral is a beautiful ship with first class service and food and the guides looked after us well. Very happy to recommend Wildfoot and L’Austral...
We had always wanted to see the Arctic and travelling all the way from Australia needed lots of information. After getting nowhere, we came across Wildfoot and found people who knew what they were talking about! Sara and John were so helpful and made the process easy, suggesting Iceland Greenland and Spitsbergen. This was perfect for us – amazing scenery and lots of wildlife, especially the polar bears in Spitsbergen. Thanks for everything. Ps, the ship was great too!
Just wanted to say thank you for suggesting a trip to Franz Josef Land as something different for the Arctic. We had a super trip and really enjoyed the Sea Spirit. Galapagos next!
Standing on the North Pole has been an ambition of mine since childhood and now I have done it! Thank you for making the process so easy - seeing polar bears and whales too was a real bonus.
The Sea Spirit expedition was excellent and the team organising it all were extremely good. 10 out of 10. Everything went very smoothly. The Iceland extension worked perfectly, all the organisation, connections etc. were excellent
The cruise was beyond my expectations. Got to see everything the captain wanted, even a polar bear mother with three cubs. Coal Miners Cabins were smashing. I did loads of birding and exploring over three days. All the people were great from the expedition leaders down to the passengers. So glad to have achieved my ambition of some 50 years standing and got amongst the ice of the Arctic, walked amongst it’s islands and witnessed the antics of its wonderful wildlife. What’s next??? I’ll need to speak with Sara again.
Thanks so much for enabling me to get to places I had always wanted to see from a very young age. “Ace” as my boys used to say!
Just wanted to send a quick note to say thank you very much for all your help in arranging our recent trip to Svalbard. Everything ran smoothly and the trip was a great success. Unfortunately I had to flew back a few days early and missed out on Isfjord Radio, which the rest of the team said was a brilliant place with amazing food, still the Basecamp Hotel and Nordenskiold Lodge were pretty amazing places, so I’m not complaining!
Writing back to tell you that the trip to the Arctic was all that it promised and more. It was a great wild-life sightseeing opportunity and the staff were really good.I had an excellent trip and have thousands of photos to go through.
I had an absolutely fabulous time won the Sergey Vavilov, it is an excellent ship. Sara was indeed right in her recommendation that they would be the most likely to push north into the ice to find the polar bears. We even circumnavigated Spitsbergen which was awesome and not o n the itinerary.It is such a wonderful way to take a trip when you are on your own – so if any of your potential single clients are unsure, definitely recommend it – I didn’t feel alone from the moment I stepped on board. I will be at the Birdfair next weekend and so will catch up with whoever is there – regarding this trip, and potentially my next!
Great cruise, staff and expedition team. Had a great trip.
Great cruise, staff and expedition team. Had a great trip.
We had a wonderful time, even though we didn't do all the places we were supposed to but we all felt were we went instead couldn't beaten. Saw animals I wanted to see. Bit worried what the food was like as some of the ships cooking leaves something to be desired, but food was very good. We thought all the guides were brilliant and informative, friendly and knowledgeable It was far better than we expected and even my husband thoroughly enjoyed it!
I wanted to let you know that I had a wonderful cruise in the Russian Far East. The landscape and destination were inspiring, we had some excellent wildlife sightings (sea otter, grey whale, Steller's sea eagle, snowy owl and Arctic fox were all firsts for me), and the Heritage team were superb. Rough seas forced a few changes to the itinerary but we also had some fabulous weather. All in all, a thrilling travel experience.Thanks once again for all your efforts
I thought you might like to know that this was an excellent holiday. Our guide, Brad, was absolutely wonderful, his enthusiasm and knowledge made the holiday even better. All in all the whole trip was excellent and we saw lots of bears, 24 on the first day. Fewer on the second and third days but still plenty, as well as arctic foxes,silver foxes and snowy owls. Even on the last day near the town we saw a bear on rocks by the beach.
What a great trip! Wildfoot built a great trip for us and every aspect was spot on. Our Iguazu guide was fun, interesting and helpful and all the transfers were timely and comfortable. The Antarctica Trip was superb - WIldfoot had given us the best advice and helped us choose the right ship and tour for what we wanted - A truly memorable Experience Thank You Wildfoot

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WILDFOOT Wildlife & Adventure Specialist

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Simon Rowland
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