20818
Scotland/Norway
A Voyage from Edinburgh to the Arctic: Fjords and Wildlife
Voyage north on an expedition ship as you discover unique wildlife, dramatic fjords, picturesque villages and traditional cuisine along the pristine shores of the Arctic.
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Program No. 20818RJ
Length
24 days
Starts at
12,198
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24 days
23 nights
64 meals
21 B 21 L 22 D
DAY
1
In Transit to Program
In Flight
DAY
2
Arrive in Glagow - Transfer to Edinburgh, Scotland
Edinburgh
D
Jurys Inn

Morning: Flight arrives in Glasgow, Scotland (GLA) at 10:40 a.m. Please refer to the “Travel Details/Transportation” section for information about transfers. Transfer by coach to Edinburgh (approximately 1.5 hours).

Lunch: On your own.

Afternoon: Your afternoon is leisure to unpack and relax. In the early evening, the Group Leader will greet everyone and lead introductions. We will review the program theme, the up-to-date Daily Schedule and any changes, discuss safety guidelines, emergency procedures, roles and responsibilities, and answer any questions you may have. Indicated times are approximate. Program activities, schedules, and personnel may need to change due to local circumstances. In the event of changes, we will alert you as quickly as possible. Thank you for your understanding.

Dinner: Welcome dinner at the hotel.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
3
Edinburgh Highlights / Embark MS Expedition
Aboard the M/S Expedition
B,L,D
M/S Expedition

Breakfast: At the hotel.

Morning: Discover Edinburgh on a half-day panoramic city drive. See some of the city's most famous landmarks and neighborhoods, including (Old town area (the Royal Mile, Greyfriar’s Bobby and Grassmarket); New town area (Princes Street, Charlotte Square, St. Andrew’s Square and Heriott Row),Holyrood Palace and Edinburgh Castle visit.

Lunch: Lunch at a local pub. The menu will include an entree and dessert as well as water, tea or coffee.

Afternoon: Transfer to embark the ship in the Port of Leith in the late afternoon. Take some time to unpack, explore the ship, and relax on board. The MS Expedition will depart this evening through a lock which will take you down to sea level.

Dinner: On board the ship.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
4
Scrabster, Scotland
Scrabster
B,L,D
M/S Expedition

Activity note: While it is our intention to adhere to the itinerary described below, there is a certain amount of flexibility built into the itinerary and on occasion it may be necessary, or desirable to make alterations. On the first day on board, the Expedition Leader will give you an expedition overview.

Breakfast: On board the ship.

Morning: Highlights include a visit to the Castle and Gardens of Mey, formerly known as Barrogill Castle and restored by Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II. On the return from Castle of Mey there will be a brief stop at Dunnet Head, the most northerly point on the British mainland. Here, you will visit the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds Reserve. Alternatively, you may chose to pass on the Castle of Mey to instead go directly to Dunnet Head on a birding bus for serious birders. Of strategic importance during World War II, Dunnet Head has a number of old military buildings still standing on site.

Lunch: On board the ship.

Afternoon: Continue exploration of the most northerly point on the British mainland.

Dinner: On board the ship.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
5
Lerwick, Shetland Islands
Lerwick
B,L,D
M/S Expedition

Breakfast: On board the ship.

Morning: We continue northwards to the remote Shetland Islands. the islands were under Norse rule until 1469, when they were given to Scotland as part of a Danish princessess dowry. The Shetlands are an engaging mix of Scotland and Scandinavia, with spectacular coastlines, varied and abundant bird life and a number of archaeological sites that date back thousands of years.

Lunch: On board the ship.

Afternoon: Continue exploration of Lerwick.

Dinner: On board the ship.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
6
Nordfjorden, Norway
Nordfjorden
B,L,D
M/S Expedition

Breakfast: On board the ship.

Morning: Cross the famous North Sea, through one of the largest off shore oil fields in the world.

Lunch: On board the ship.

Afternoon: Dependent on weather and time, we may stop in Olden for a short bus ride to the Birksdal area and a walk to a glacier. There is a trolly-like car available for people who are unable to walk the full distance.

Dinner: On board the ship.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
7
Geiranger, Norway
Geiranger
B,L,D
M/S Expedition

Breakfast: On board the ship.

Morning: Sail deep into one of Norway's most beautiful fjords, into the mainland. The fjord is one of Norway's most visited tourist sites and has been listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The fjord is 9.3 miles long, surrounded by spectacular mountains, lush green trees, waterfalls and several farms.

Lunch: On board the ship.

Afternoon: Continue to explore Geiranger.

Dinner: On board the ship.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
8
Trondheim and Austratt, Norway
Aboard the M/S Expedition
B,L,D
M/S Expedition

Breakfast: On board the ship.

Morning: This morning you visit Trondheim, a modern city surrounded by beautiful forests and mountains, and home to the remarkable Nidaros Cathedral. Built over the burial site of Saint Olav, the King of Norway in the 11th century, Nidaos Cathedral is the traditional location for the consecration of the King of Norway.

Lunch: On board the ship. During lunch, the ship will sail from Trondheim to Austratt.

Afternoon: Enjoy a guided tour of the historic port of Austratt.

Dinner: On board the ship.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
9
Torghatten and Treana Archipelago
Torghatten
B,L,D
M/S Expedition

Breakfast: On board the ship.

Morning: The rugged coastline of central Norway features some of the world's most beautiful nature. The mountain scenery and coastline offer breathtaking scenery and our Captain will negotiate with local Norwegian pilots to determine our best Zodiac shore landing options.

Lunch: On board the ship.

Afternoon: Our goal is to visit Torghatten, one of the most bizarre rock formations in Norway and a significant local landmark. We will also try to move towards the Treana archipelago that is comprised of over 1000 islands.

Dinner: On board the ship.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
10
Svartisen and Vikingen
Svartisen
B,L,D
M/S Expedition

Breakfast: On board the ship.

Morning: Svartisen has a beautiful walk to a glacier with the chance of an easy walk along a road. It also has a more demanding walk all the way around a lake below the glacier. From the lake, there's a great view of the glacier. We will also visit Vikingen Island/Lofoten - a small island that sits directly on the Arctic Circle. There's a small sculpture of a globe on the islland celebrating its position on one of the five major latitude circles.

Lunch: On board the ship.

Afternoon: Continue sailing the coast of Norway.

Dinner: On board the ship.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
11
Lofoten Islands, Svolvaer and Trollfjord
Aboard the M/S Expedition
B,L,D
M/S Expedition

Breakfast: On board the ship.

Morning: The Lofoten Archipelago is an enchanting area of picturesque villages by the sea backed with jagged peaks. Today we go ashore via coach on the island of Aa, where cod fishing is still a major part of the economy. Visit the Torrkiskmuseum (Stockfish Museum). Continue by bus across the Lofoten islands to Svolvaar.

Lunch: On board the ship.

Afternoon: Continue sailing the coast of Norway.

Dinner: On board the ship.

Evening: In the evening be sure to be on deck as we cruise into one of the most famous fjords in Norway, the short yet dramatic Trollfjord, and search the cliffs for Norway's mythical beings: Trolls.

DAY
12
Tromsø
Aboard the M/S Expedition
B,L,D
M/S Expedition

Breakfast: On board the ship.

Morning: Explore this northern havel and be sure to visit the Arctic Cathedral, whose unique architecture is evocative of snow and icebergs, its stained glass windows are among the largest in Europe. Tromsø, the capital of northern Norway, is known as the "Gateway to the Arctic" since so many Arctic expeditions originated from here. We will spend the whole day learning about the history of past expeditions and exploring Norway's largest northern city. We will enjoy a coach tour to some of the major sites including the Polar and Tromsø Museums and weather permitting enjoy a stunning view from a cable car.

Lunch: In Tromsø.

Afternoon: Field trip to Tromsø continues.

Dinner: On board the ship.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
13
At Sea
Aboard the M/S Expedition
B,L,D
M/S Expedition

Breakfast: On board the ship.

Morning: Sail past Bear Island, explore mist-shrouded Bjørnøya - a birdwatcher's paradise featuring spectacular views, thousands of fulmars, kittiwakes, guilemots and gulls. Weather permitting, there may be a chance to explore mist-shrouded Bjørnøya by Zodiac - the weather is tempermental so there's a 50/50 chance! Bear Island, even from afar, has spectacular views.

Lunch: On board the ship.

Afternoon: Continue sailing the Norwegian Sea towards the Svalbard Archipelago.

Dinner: On board the ship.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
14
Hornsund and Bellsund
Hornsund
B,L,D
M/S Expedition

Breakfast: On board the ship.

Morning: Days 14 and 15 will be spent exploring Hornsund and Bellsund. Svalbard is an archipelago of deep fjords, high mountains and massive glaciers. Our focus during our time here is searching for walruses, seals, reindeer, arctic foxes, and of course, the polar bear. Our flexible itinerary and experience here allow us to take best advantage of the ice and weather conditions. Each season we attempt to discover new landing sites to explore and enhance your expedition experience. Shore walks and zodiac adventures bring us up close to mystical landscapes, icebergs, and wildlife.

Lunch: On board the ship.

Afternoon: Hornsund is a fjord on the western side of the southernmost tip of Spitsbergen Island. The coastline of Hornsund is diversified, with a number of bays at the mouths of mountainous glacial valleys. Some of these bays have appeared as late as the beginning of the last century due to recession of glaciers.

Dinner: On board the ship.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
15
Hornsund and Bellsund
Hornsund
B,L,D
M/S Expedition

Breakfast: On board the ship.

Morning: Bellsund cuts into Spitsbergen south of Isfjorden and splits into two branches: the fjords Van Mijenfjorden and Van Keulenfjorden. The landscape around here is characterized by high mountains where different geological structures can be seen clearly, including impressive folds. There are large bird cliffs in the area; fertilization by seabird droppings accounts for the surprisingly lush vegetation in some areas. The area holds cultural remains from several periods of Svalbard’s history, the most prominent being the era of mineral exploration and mining at the beginning of the 20th century.

Lunch: On board the ship.

Afternoon: Continue to explore the fjords along the coast of Spitsbergen Island. The captain of the ship and the naturalists on board, will determine when and where landings will be made, or if you will explore by zodiac.

Dinner: On board the ship.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
16
Isfjord - Festningen and Alkhornet
Isfjord
B,L,D
M/S Expedition

Breakfast: On board the ship.

Morning: The highlight of Festningen (the fortress) is an impressive dike of rock that runs along the top of a small cliff where fossilized footprints of dinosaurs have been found.

Lunch: On board the ship.

Afternoon: Alkhornet features a towering horn of rock which is the nesting site for thousands of Guillemots and Kittiwakes, white foxes and reindeer take advantage of the lush tundra vegetation below the cliffs.

Dinner: On board the ship.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
17
Longyearbyen
Longyearbyen, Svalbard
B,L,D
M/S Expedition

Breakfast: On board the ship.

Morning: Longyearbyen is the largest settlement on the archipelago of Svalbard with a population of about 2,060 people and about as many snowmobiles. This morning, meet with your group leader on board for a brief presentation on Svalbard, and what you will see and experience during the remainder of your expedition. Later, walk into town to see the Svalbard Museum (approximately 1 mile). Since opening in 1979, the goal of this unique museum is to help locals and visitors understand the relationship between nature, culture, landscape, human activity, technology and the environment in the Arctic. Following the visit you will have some free time to independently explore Longyearbyen.

Lunch: Lunch on board or on your own. There are several cafes and restaurants in town where you can sample local specialties, such as reindeer.

Afternoon: Your afternoon is at leisure. Continue to explore Longyearbyen independently or relax on board and admire the breathtaking scenery.

Dinner: On board the ship.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
18
Svalbard Archipelago / Spitsbergen
Spitsbergen
B,L,D
M/S Expedition

Breakfast: On board the ship.

Morning: Each day will be planned to take advantage of local ice and weather conditions. Distances are relatively short in the Archipelago and as there are no ocean crossings, the seas are normally calm.

Lunch: On board the ship.

Afternoon: Svalbard is one of the few places on the planet that offers such a wealth of diversity of natural and cultural history sites. During the next six days you will visit ice covered seas, fjords with breathtaking mountain scenery and glaciers flowing into the sea around you. You will spend time steaming through the ice in search of polar bears hunting seals. Ivory gulls will be a highlight for the birders, while keeping a constant lookout for walrus hauled out on ice floes or on sandy beaches. Visit, ice permitting, spectacular bird cliffs filled with thousands of murres (guillemots) as well as kittiwakes and glaucous gulls. A little auk colony will also be on your agenda. Your shore stops will be highlighted by tundra flowers. You will have the opportunity to observe and discuss some of their adaptations to what is considered a harsh environment. At one or more stops, you may even see Svalbard's unique species of reindeer. They are much smaller than their southern relatives, but still carry impressive antlers. There is also the possibility of seeing arctic foxes. Svalbard is also a land of history; from whaling to reaching for the pole, to trapping, coal mining and war, you will visit some of these historic sites. Cruise in Zodiacs along the ice edge viewing seals or walrus, in fjords with glaciers spilling down to the sea or in front of specatcular seabird cliffs. You will have opportunities to walk on shore, observe and photograph the Arctic flora and fauna. Since you are in the land of the polar bear, your expedition staff will carry rifles and flare guns on shore for your protection.

Dinner: On board the ship.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
19
Svalbard Archipelago / Spitsbergen
Spitsbergen
B,L,D
M/S Expedition

Breakfast: On board the ship.

Morning: Each day will be planned to take advantage of local ice and weather conditions. By not having a set itinerary, we take on an expedition spirit and are free to take advantage of the best that Svalbard has to offer. On board the ship, a team of naturalists, historians and other experts will present an in-depth educational program on Svalbard and the Arctic.

Lunch: On board the ship.

Afternoon: Krossfjord, Konigsfjord, Monaco Glacier, Hinlopen Strait, Northeast Land, Edgeoya, Hornsund, and Bellsund are just a few of the places we may visit.

Dinner: On board the ship.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
20
Svalbard Archipelago / Spitsbergen
Spitsbergen
B,L,D
M/S Expedition

Breakfast: On board the ship.

Morning: Each day will be planned to take advantage of local ice and weather conditions. By not having a set itinerary, we take on an expedition spirit and are free to take advantage of the best that Svalbard has to offer. On board the ship, a team of naturalists, historians and other experts will present an in-depth educational program on Svalbard and the Arctic.

Lunch: On board the ship.

Afternoon: Krossfjord, Konigsfjord, Monaco Glacier, Hinlopen Strait, Northeast Land, Edgeoya, Hornsund, and Bellsund are just a few of the places we may visit.

Dinner: On board the ship.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
21
Svalbard Archipelago / Spitsbergen
Spitsbergen
B,L,D
M/S Expedition

Breakfast: On board the ship.

Morning: Each day will be planned to take advantage of local ice and weather conditions. By not having a set itinerary, we take on an expedition spirit and are free to take advantage of the best that Svalbard has to offer.

Lunch: On board the ship.

Afternoon: Krossfjord, Konigsfjord, Monaco Glacier, Hinlopen Strait, Northeast Land, Edgeoya, Hornsund, and Bellsund are just a few of the places we may visit.

Dinner: On board the ship.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
22
Svalbard Archipelago / Spitsbergen
Aboard the M/S Expedition
B,L,D
M/S Expedition

Breakfast: On board the ship.

Morning: Each day will be planned to take advantage of local ice and weather conditions. By not having a set itinerary, we take on an expedition spirit and are free to take advantage of the best that Svalbard has to offer.

Lunch: On board the ship.

Afternoon: Krossfjord, Konigsfjord, Monaco Glacier, Hinlopen Strait, Northeast Land, Edgeoya, Hornsund, and Bellsund are just a few of the places we may visit.

Dinner: On board the ship.

Evening: At leisure.

DAY
23
Svalbard Archipelago / Spitsbergen
Aboard the M/S Expedition
B,L,D
M/S Expedition

Breakfast: On board the ship.

Morning: Each day will be planned to take advantage of local ice and weather conditions. By not having a set itinerary, we take on an expedition spirit and are free to take advantage of the best that Svalbard has to offer.

Lunch: On board the ship.

Afternoon: Krossfjord, Konigsfjord, Monaco Glacier, Hinlopen Strait, Northeast Land, Edgeoya, Hornsund, and Bellsund are just a few of the places we may visit.

Dinner: On board the ship.

Evening: At leisure. Your flight out leaves in the early morning hours.

DAY
24
Disembark / Departures
In Flight

Morning: Very early disembarkation of the ship and transfer to the airport for flight returning to North America - departing at 2:30 a.m. Safe travels. We hope you enjoy Road Scholar learning adventures and look forward to having you on rewarding programs in the future. Please join our Facebook page and share photos of your program. Visit us at www.facebook.com/rsadventures. Best wishes for all your journeys!






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