Epic Northwest Passage Adventure
Epic Northwest Passage Adventure 29 Days aboard MS Roald Amundsen
This thrilling extended voyage will see you following in the wake of the great explorers as you traverse almost the entirety of the legendary Northwest Passage, including Baffin Bay and West Greenland. Sailing from Nome to Halifax in premium comfort aboard one of the few vessels equipped to sail these waters, you will discover incredible nature, spectacular scenery and lands teeming with rich history and fascinating culture. Surrounded by the raw and daunting beauty of the Arctic, you will be on the lookout for amazing wildlife encounters, including chances of spotting Polar bears, and enjoy exciting small boat cruises and hiking opportunities on this unique once in a lifetime adventure.
Namibia Birding and Photography GuideAn 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 >
Wildlife Guide & PhotographerAndy 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 >
Photographer and founder of the Travel Photographer Of The Year awardsA 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 >
Falklands Expert & GuideBorn 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 >
- Traverse the legendary Northwest Passage!
- Discover enchanting lands and spectacular scenery in Arctic Canada and West Greenland
- Visit Labrador, Newfoundland and the UNESCO World Heritage Site of the Ilulissat Icefjord
- Search for wildlife including Polar bears, whales and walrus
- Visit traditional villages and learn about their rich cultures and traditions
- Visits sites of great historic significance and learn all about the explorers of the past
- Full board accommodation on board ship
- Overnight stay in Vancouver pre-voyage including breakfast
- Transfer hotel to airport in Vancouver
- Economy flight Vancouver to Nome
- Transfer airport to ship in Nome
- Wind and water-resistant jacket
- Landings with small boats and activities on board and ashore
- Professional English-speaking Expedition team that provide lectures as well as accompanying landings and activities
- Free tea and coffee
ITINERARY28 Nights 29 Days
- Day 1 | Vancouver
- Day 2 | Vancouver to Nome - Embarkation
- Days 3 - 8 | At Sea
- Days 9 - 19 | Heart of the Northwest Passage
- Day 20 | At Sea Towards Greenland
- Day 21 | Ilulissat
- Day 22 | Sisimiut
- Day 23 | Nuuk
- Day 24 | Ivittuut
- Day 25 | At Sea Back to Canada
- Days 26 - 27 | Red Bay & Corner Brook
- Days 28 - 29 | At Sea to Halifax - Disembarkation
Your expedition begins in the popular Canadian city of Vancouver where after having arrived independently you can make your way to the hotel for your included overnight stay. This picturesque city is a delight to explore and many passengers will choose to arrive here a few days before departure to soak up the unique atmosphere, vibrant nightlife and beautiful surrounds.
Vancouver to Nome - Embarkation
After breakfast at the hotel this morning you will join your transfer to the airport for your included flight to Nome in Alaska where your Polar expedition ship will be waiting for you. Depending on flight times there may be time for a brief exploration of this colourful outpost before embarkation begins.
After settling in to your comfortable cabin and exploring your home for the next 4 weeks, you will be invited to the welcome event as we set sail for our epic Arctic adventure.
Your cruise to the heart of the Northwest Passage begins as we set sail through the Bering Strait towards the Chukchi Sea. Over the course of the next few days your informative and entertaining lecture and presentation programme will commence, with talks covering everything from the history of Polar exploration to the geology and wildlife that you are likely to encounter throughout your voyage.
There will also be plenty to keep you occupied on deck as we sail past some exceptionally scenic sights and keep an eye out for grey and bowhead whales in the waters below. We will reach Point Barrow, the northernmost point of the USA, and sail into the Beaufort Sea before continuing on to the Amundsen Gulf. Make sure to be on deck here as we sail past the remarkable Smoking Hills on Cape Bathurst.
Heart of the Northwest Passage
Around the morning of day 9 we will hope to have reached the heart of the Northwest Passage, the legendary sea route that connects the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans through the Canadian Arctic Archipelago and which is the site of countless historical expeditions that you will learn all about throughout the course of your journey. Any expedition through the Northwest Passage is reliant upon favourable sea and ice conditions, so your experienced captain and crew will continually assess conditions to chart the very best course for unrivalled scenic, historical, cultural and wildlife experiences. As such, your itinerary over these next 11 days will be flexible but there are some famous landing sites that we expect to visit in these remote and rugged Arctic lands.
Our first stop is likely to take us to Ulukhaktokk, a small and very remote settlement on Victoria Island which is home to just 460 people. We will visit here to learn all about their lifestyle and traditional cultures before moving on to Cambridge Bay on the other side of the island. Cambridge Bay is rich in archaeological history and blessed with abundant wildlife including muskoxen, caribou, geese, seals and myriad fish, and we will enjoy an exploration around the area in search of wildlife observations.
Our next stop is likely to be Gjøa Haven where you will be warmly welcomed to 'the finest little harbour in the world', so called by the Norwegian explorer Roald Amundsen, who wintered here on the Gjøa Expedition. Gjøa Haven is a popular destination for fans of arctic history and along with Amundsen’s 2 years spent here collecting scientific data and learning from the local Inuit people about survival and travel in the Polar Regions, the John Ross expedition of 1829-1833 had previously visited this region and the ill-fated John Franklin expedition of 1845 perished nearby. The area is also a great place for wildlife with a large herd of muskoxen living on the island alongside numerous caribou, and birding opportunities are excellent with likely sightings of loons, geese, ducks, terns, jaegers, plovers, snow buntings and snowy owls.
Moving further through the passage we will arrive at historic Fort Ross, a trading post established by the Hudson's Bay Company in 1937. We hope to spend some time exploring the area on foot and see the two small huts ashore that are maintained by the Canadian Coast Guard, occasionally used by the local Inuit for shelter during hunting trips. On Beechey Island our introduction to the history of the Northwest Passage will continue as we visit the graves which lay testimony to the mysterious 1845 expedition of Sir John Franklin which resulted in the disappearance of 129 crewmembers. We will also see the remnants of Northumberland House which was built by the rescuers searching for Franklin and his men.
Next stop on our journey will be Devon Island, the largest uninhabited island on Earth, where we will come ashore at Dundas Harbour to see an abandoned settlement with an old Royal Canadian Mounted Police camp, some of the island’s numerous archaeological sites and an impressive Thule site. As we reach the end of the passage we will arrive at the picturesque Pond Inlet, a traditional Inuit community on the northern tip of Baffin Island. Make sure to have your cameras ready as we sail through the scenic channel flanked by the peaks and glaciers of Baffin and Bylot Islands. Pond Inlet is surrounded by mountain ranges, with several dozen glaciers, scenic fjords and inlets, ice caves and drifting icebergs and is a fantastic place for spotting wildlife such as polar bears and large pods of narwhal.
Throughout your time in the Northwest Passage there should be ample opportunities for small boat cruising, taking you up-close to the action, hiking opportunities and numerous shore visits.
At Sea Towards Greenland
Leaving the Northwest Passage and Arctic Canada behind for now, we will spend a day crossing the Davis Strait towards Greenland. Whilst at sea you can continue to enjoy the informative and entertaining lecture programme, spend some time on deck looking for seabirds and attending briefings in preparation for your time in the wintry wonderland of Ilulissat.
Today is likely to be one of the highlights of your epic expedition as we visit the stunning area of the Ilulissat Icefjord, a UNESCO World Heritage Site that quite simple needs to be seen to be appreciated. This exceptionally scenic settlement is set against the most remarkable backdrop of enormous icebergs which have made their way down from the Jakobshavn Glacier and run aground at the mouth of the fjord just outside the town. There will be ample opportunities here for exploring the Icefjord including optional boat tours and helicopter flights offering exceptional aerial views of the wonders below. Alternatively you can also enjoy a short walk through the town which will lead you to a network of short trails that take you to the shores of the fjord. Or simply sit back and relax listening to the mystical sounds of the icebergs cracking and rumbling, echoing from one end of Ilulissat to the other.
As we sail towards Sisimiut we recommend spending some time on deck in search of sightings of the numerous whale species and marine animals which frequent the waters here including humpback, fin, minke and porpoise, as well as large numbers of seals.
As we come ashore we will explore this colourful and modern settlement which has retained its ancient traditions and is home to a small museum which is well worth a visit. Here we can take a hike in the hills to enjoy the beautiful views or spend some time shopping for local handicrafts and meeting the residents of this unique and scenic town. Time permitting, a variety of optional excursions may be offered here.
Moving south down the west coast we will reach the mouth of one of the largest and most spectacular fjord systems in the world to visit Nuuk, Greenland's oldest and largest town. The capital of Greenland, Nuuk offers a unique mixture of old and new, with picturesque historic buildings and churches dotted amongst modern government and academic buildings. Nuuk is home to almost a third of Greenland’s population and there is plenty to do here including city tours, hikes, scenic flights and visits to the Greenland National Museum - home to the mummies from Qilakilsoq.
We conclude our exploration of southwest Greenland with a visit to the abandoned mining town of Ivittuut. This uninhabited settlement is a stronghold for musk oxen and was built on top of the so-called Norse Middle settlement. More than a thousand years ago, Vikings settled the area with about twenty farms. It is the smallest and least well known of the Norse settlements on Greenland, and no written records of its residents have been found. This is why archaeologists believe it was the last one established, and the first to be abandoned. We might meet some of the hunters who return to seek shelter in the old houses by the sea.
At Sea Back to Canada
After an enjoyable exploration of Greenland, it’s time to head back west as we sail across the southern part of the Labrador Sea towards Newfoundland and Labrador in Canada. This is the perfect time to relax following the exertions of the last 3 weeks and prepare for the adventures to come. Your onboard educational activities will continue, and you may wish to spend some time collating the many photographs you will no doubt taken so far.
Red Bay & Corner Brook
Our first stop back in Canada will take us to the small coastal community of Red Bay on the coast of Labrador where an enjoyable walk around the area will take us to see the UNESCO World Heritage Site of the Red Bay Basque Whaling Station. Here we will learn all about this former whaling town’s interesting history and hope to meet some of the less than 200 residents of this classic outpost.
The following day will take us to Corner Brook on the island of Newfoundland, and the last stop on our epic journey. Here we will have the chance to enjoy an exploration around the charming town centre or take one of the many walking trails surrounding the town.
At Sea to Halifax - Disembarkation
As your mighty Arctic expedition comes to an end, we will spend one last day at sea sailing towards Halifax and the ending point of your cruise. After arrival in Halifax on the morning of day 29 it will be time to disembark and bid a fond farewell to your crew and new-found friends. Halifax is an exceptionally charming gateway town which offers a vibrant mix of old and new, and many passengers may choose to spend an extra day or two here to soak up the city's unique atmosphere.
What Our Customers
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
How WILDFOOT creates your holiday Adventure
Talk to someone who knows. Our specialist consultants are here to help you every step of the way – here’s how..
Talk to a specialist
Visit the wildfoot website for inspiration on your choice of adventures and destinations, then call us and speak to one of our specialists for first hand advice. We can start the planning process straight away, if you are ready.
Create your personal
Your specialist consultant will set the ball rolling and work with you to choose the right itinerary (and the right ship, if you are going to the arctic or antarctic) just for you, to suit your requirements and budget.
Help right up
We will answer any questions about your trip that may arise and, when you have paid your balance (12-15 weeks prior to departure), we will send you your detailed itinerary and go through it with you.
We are still there for you even when you have left home – our partners overseas are there to assist, especially for emergencies and you can contact us at any time in the uk by e-mail or telephone.