Labrador and The Torngat Mountains 11 DaysAboard: Akademik Ioffe
This voyage links numerous historic locations on Canada’s east coast, including a known Viking settlement, a French-built fortress, several remote mission locations and isolated fishing ports. We journey from the more temperate climate found in the Maritimes, northwards and into the higher Arctic latitudes. Subtle changes to vegetation and wildlife species can be noticed and our expert guides will interpret and explain these changes throughout the journey. The region features strong cultural diversity and we encounter the Nunatsiavut people in small communities along the coastline of Labrador. Numerous wildlife species are found along this coastline including bears, seals, whales and both migratory and resident birds. A particular highlight of our voyage is a visit to Torngat Mountains National Park – home to the highest mountains in Canada, east of the Rockies. This is one of the jewels in the crown of the Canadian National Park network.
Note: All bookings on voyages that operate domestically within Canada, are subject to a compulsory 5% goods and services tax (GST). This will be added to the cruise price on the confirmation invoice. The charter flight from Iqaluit to Ottawa is also charged at US$995
- Searching for polar bears and other animals
- Whales and marine mammals
- Superb birdlife
- Spectacular scenery including Torngat Mountains National Park
- Experience Inuit culture, Inuit history and a Viking settlement
- Visit remote ports and local communities
- Transit from the Atlantic provinces into the Arctic
- Kayaking options available
- Resident photography expert
- Transfers to and from ship
- Full board accommodation on board ship
- Zodiac excursions and shore landings including hikes and wildlife colony visits
- Programme of expert lectures
- Experienced Expedition Leader and professional expedition team of marine biologists, naturalists, historians, adventure guides and photographers
- 24 hour hot drinks
- Expedition gear loan package
So much to experience
Too much to choose from? This is where we come in
Take advantage of our vast experience, passion and expertise to help you hand craft the perfect Arctic adventure for you.
Mike has more than 15 years of experience in the travel industry and continues to be inspired by the people, places and wildlife he discovers. His in-depth personal knowledge of a diverse range of destinations ensures your adventure itinerary will be a holiday like no other.
Having amassed a host of extraordinary adventures in destinations all over the world, Zoe’s experience, skills and enthusiasm for helping clients plan their ideal itinerary will help make your holiday unforgettable, action packed and life-changing.
Simon’s deep passion for and first-hand knowledge of a vast range of destinations all over the world gives him the ideal skills to help you create a truly unforgettable wildlife inspired adventure to the most exciting places on the planet.
Our popularitinerary Suggestions
All our itinerary holidays are fully customisable
Louisbourg, Nova Scotia
Your Canadian adventure cruise will begin in the historic port town of Louisbourg in Nova Scotia, where after having arrived independently you will board your expedition vessel in the late afternoon. After settling in to your cabin and exploring your new surroundings you can join your new shipmates for a beautiful dinner of fresh local lobster as your ship sails out of the port, past the lighthouse and on to the Grand Banks.
Gros Morne National Park, Newfoundland
Our second day may well be one of the highlights of your voyage as we anchor off the coast of the tiny fishing community of Trout River to start our exploration of Gros Morne National Park. This incredible area is world renowned for its unique geology and exceptional scenery, and after making land via Zodiac we will be transferred by bus to the World Heritage-listed Tablelands which will result in spectacular views over most of the park.
Walking north we will explore through the park to discover its unique landscape of dramatic rock ridges and boreal wetlands, and look out for sightings of moose and white-throated sparrows along the way. There will be time for a visit to the park’s fantastic interpretation centre before we reach Woody Point, set within majestic Bonne Bay surrounded by soaring cliffs covered in a green blanket of tuckamore forest.
L’anse aux Meadows, Newfoundland
Having sailed northwards overnight, today we reach one of Canada’s most famous UNESCO World Heritage Sites, the renowned Viking settlement of L’Anse aux Meadows. Upon arrival we will hop in to the Zodiacs and make our way to the rocky shoreline to meet the site’s resident archaeologist. We will explore around the reconstructed sod huts and Norse ruins to find out about how the Vikings are thought to have discovered North America some 500 years prior to the arrival of Christopher Columbus. The site is where Norseman, Leif Erikson, the son of Erik the Red, is thought to have founded “Vinland” around 1000 AD, and as we walk along the beach we will learn about how a millennium ago the Viking long-ships would have been found along this very beach.
After an entertaining exploration of L’Anse aux Meadows we will make our way back to our expedition ship, and after settling back in we will leave the coastline to Newfoundland, crossing the Strait of Belle Isle overnight.
Battle Harbour, Newfoundland
Today we will arrive in the province of Labrador as we venture ashore at Battle Harbour to explore this remote community that is home to beautifully restored fishing, whaling and commercial buildings set amongst a backdrop of breathtaking coastal views. Photo opportunities abound and your resident photography expert will be happy to help you capture the perfect shot. Battle Harbour is also an area of significant historic interest and your resident historians will offer you insight in to how it was one of the first British settlements on the east coast of the Americas, and an important gateway to the rich Labrador fisheries.
The ancient rocks of the Canadian Shield (the exposed portion of the Earth’s crust) cradle the small coastal hamlet of Hopedale. This remarkable geological feature, estimated to be up to 4-billion-years-old greets us as we sail through narrow channels and weigh anchor off Hopedale. We venture ashore by zodiac to visit the Hopedale Moravian Mission – built in 1782 and said to be the oldest building east of Quebec. It’s a fascinating place and we learn of the influence of the early Moravian missionaries on the Inuit people of Northern Labrador. This location has been designated a Canadian National Historic Site. We plan a visit to the local museum for a deeper insight. The local Inuit produce wonderful carvings and other crafts which make wonderful souvenirs.
Today’s itinerary will bring us to the historic town of Hebron, a designated National Historic Site which was established by the Moravian missionaries in the early 1830’s. In 1959 the mission was closed and the local Inuit families were relocated, however the original buildings still stand and we will enjoy a walk through the settlement to take a closer look at these buildings which echo the Germanic influence on the area. We will hope to meet the Nunatsiavut Government ambassadors Buddy and Jenny who have been looking after this historic site for years and will have fascinating stories to tell us.
Torngat Mountains National Park, Labrador
Today marks the beginning of what, for many, will be the highlight of the voyage as we switch our attention from history to wilderness and wildlife and sail into Saglek Fjord, the southern gateway to the Torngat Mountains National Park Reserve. This magnificent wilderness covers almost 10,000 square kilometres of Northern Labrador and is home to breathtaking fjords, remnant glacial systems and stunning landscapes, as well as an abundance of wildlife including the elusive polar bear.
During your time here you can enjoy various activities including excellent hiking opportunities which will offer fantastic viewpoints of the park’s unique location between Quebec on one side, and the Labrador Coast on the other. Gentler walks will also reward with spectacular photo opportunities as you discover the park’s beautiful tundra filled with wildflowers and berries set amongst the incredible backdrop of Canada’s highest mountains East of the Rockies. We will also enjoy some Zodiac cruising along the shorelines and guided walks in search of wildlife sightings including polar bears, caribou, and seals, as well as learning about the area’s rich culture and heritage; The Inuktitut word Torngat, means “place of spirits” and the Torngat Mountains have been home to Inuit and their predecessors for over 7500 years.
Nachvak Fjord, Torngat Mountains National Park
We continue our exploration of the Torngat Mountains National Park by sailing to the exceptionally beautiful Nachvak Fjord where we hope to encounter an abundance of marine wildlife including ring, hooded, harp and harbour seals, and minke, fin and humpback whales. This deep and narrow fjord which stretches for more than 20 kilometres offers an outstanding location for landscape photography with endless subjects, a dynamic colour range interesting lighting.
Button Islands, Nunavut
After our thrilling exploration of the Torngat Mountains National Park we will continue to sail north, passing Martin Bay where our onboard historians will tell us about the remarkable events that happened here during WWII when a German U-boat made the only known armed landing in North America.
We will then sail further north to visit the Button Islands in search of sightings of the thousands of seabirds and other marine animals that frequent here, before sailing on into the southern Davis Strait.
Monumental Island, Nunavut
For our final adventure we sail across the mouth of Frobisher Bay and make landfall on Monumental Island, a small, steep-sided outcrop off the southeast coast of Baffin Island, to search for the polar bears and walrus that are known to live around the island. The relationship between the polar bears and the walrus is a complicated one. Whilst the polar bears have been known to attack and kill young walrus they are no match for a fully-grown male walrus, and as such the 2 intriguing species reside side-by-side in an uneasy, fragile truce.
This afternoon we will enjoy our final Zodiac cruise of the voyage before re-boarding the ship to enjoy a special farewell dinner attended by the captain. As you sleep your captain will negotiate the narrow channels of Frobisher Bay on the way to our disembarkation point, Iqaluit, the capital city of Nunavut.
Arrival into the port of Iqaluit will signal the end of our Canadian adventure. Disembarkation by Zodiac will begin after breakfast, and after a short tour of Iqaluit (if time and tides permit), we will transfer to the airport for our flight to Ottawa.
A view from Above
Built in Finland in 1989 as a Russian polar research vessel, the Akademik Ioffe, was operating as One Ocean Navigator until recently, is a comfortable, stable, ice-strengthened ship with all the facilities for modern expedition cruising. There is a mixture of suites and cabins, all with windows or portholes and some with private facilities. Public areas include dining room, lounge, bar, library with forward facing windows, multi-media room with Apple Mac computers and photo management software, presentation room, mud room, passenger lift and gift shop. There is also a wellness centre, sauna, spa, salt-water plunge pool, fitness room and infirmary. Along with plenty of open deck space, there is a top deck with 360degrees views and a small observatory with spotting scope. The ship has an open-bridge policy.
Sign up for our free newsletter
Please enter your email address using the fields below to receive all of the latest news and offers!