Path of the Vikings - Iceland, Greenland & Canada

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Trip code: 
PLE
Activity:
Polar
Max group size:
146
Min age:
18

A classic expedition that follows in the footsteps of early Vikings.

This superb voyage links three countries and follows the path taken by early Vikings as they navigated across the Atlantic on their quest of discovery a 1,000 years ago. Rich history is accompanied by breath-taking scenery, as we sail into deep fjords, past enormous icebergs and discover the culture and people of the region.

Commencing in Iceland, we cross the Denmark Strait to Greenland and navigate through the celebrated Prince Christian Sound. We then discover colourful fishing villages, meet friendly locals and learn about the history of Eric the Red and the Viking settlers as they established communities in the fertile valleys of the south. Such was the agricultural output here, they called the country Greenland – despite an ice sheet covering more than 80% of the landmass.

The region teems with wildlife and we anticipate encounters with numerous whale species. The skies are full of migratory and resident birdlife. Arriving in Canada, more Viking history awaits at L’Anse Aux Meadows. Come face to face with natural history in Newfoundland’s Gros Morne National park – a UNESCO World Heritage Site where 485 million years of history comes to the Earth’s surface. One final highlight will be a visit to the small community of Cape North, situated on the northern tip of Cape Breton in Nova Scotia.

Highlights

  • Link three exceptional countries on a single voyage crossing from east to west
  • Experience the fjords and glaciers of southern Greenland
  • Wildlife encounters with various whale species and abundant birdlife
  • Travel on a small expedition vessel
  • Accompanied by extremely qualified Expedition Staff

Key information

  • 11 nights on the ship
  • Expedition cruising in comfortable conditions

What's included

  • All meals while on the ship
  • All accommodation
  • All transport and listed activities
  • Tour leader throughout and qualified Expedition Staff
  • Flights from London (if booking incl. flights)

What's not included

  • Travel insurance
  • Single accommodation (available on request)
  • Visas or vaccinations
Call for general departures:
020 8772 3936
Call for tailormade trips:
020 8772 3874
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Responsible Travel

At Exodus we believe in the power of Responsible Travel.

Every time we travel, we are part of a global movement that creates jobs, builds more sustainable societies, encourages cultural understanding and safeguards common natural and cultural heritage. To learn more about what Responsible Travel means to Exodus click here… 

Itinerary

  • Day 1

    Start Reykjavik, Iceland

    Our adventure begins in Reykjavik, Iceland’s picturesque capital city. This afternoon, we board our home for the next 11 nights – RCGS Resolute. Once onboard you will meet the Expedition team and following welcome drinks and dinner, we depart Iceland bound for Greenland and Canada.

    Meals included: Dinner
  • Days 2-3

    At Sea from Iceland to Greenland

    We awaken to the open waters of the Denmark Strait which separates Iceland from Greenland. We make an easier time of it in our modern expedition ship than the Vikings did in their longboats more than 1,000 years ago. More recent history tells the story of one of the most significant naval engagements of the Second World War when British and German battleships met in May 1941 in these waters. Britain's HMS Hood was sunk with only three survivors out of a crew of almost 1,500. The German battleship, Bismarck was also sunk several days later after heading south into the Atlantic. Our onboard experts educate us with a series of presentations about the environment, the wildlife and history and the locations we hope to visit in the coming days. Be sure to visit the ship’s bridge and watch the Captain and officers navigate our modern expedition vessel. Enjoy the wonderful facilities onboard the ship, look for wildlife on the outer decks or relax with a book or your journal.

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 4

    Prince Christian Sound, Greenland

    The coast is in sight and the ship navigates towards the entrance of Prince Christian Sound, providing a spectacular welcome to Greenland. This narrow body of water is over 100km long and in numerous places only 500 metres wide. The sound separates the mainland from the island archipelago that forms the southern tip of the country. Mountains tower around us and waterfalls tumble down the steep cliffs as the Captain carefully navigates through the passage. Many have likened the experience to sailing a ship through the Rockies. We pass numerous icebergs along the way and can’t help but wonder what the Viking’s experienced as they pushed deeper into the sound, on their journey of discovery.

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 5

    Tasermiut Fjord and Nanortalik

    For many, today may well be a highlight of the trip. Tasermiut Fjord has a well-known reputation as 'the Patagonia of the North' due to the towering rock formations that surround the narrow waters. At almost 70km long, the place to be is on the outer decks of the ship with your camera. The highest peak is over 1800m and has a sheer granite face of more than a kilometre. This is nature at her most powerful. We return to the small town of Nanortalik and venture into the pretty harbour in the Zodiacs for a stroll through the colourful houses in town.

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 6

    Narsarsuaq, Greenland

    This is quintessential Greenland. As we navigate the ship further into the fjord system, we are awestruck by the beauty. Not surprisingly, the Vikings were just as impressed and Narsarsuaqand surrounds are among the most historically significant locations in the country. Local farmers cultivate the very same land that Eric the Red chose for his settlement more than 1,000 years ago. The Brattahlid open air museum is a fascinating spot and features a reconstructed church and Viking longhouse. Nearby is Igaliku, considered by many to be one of the most beautiful villages in the country and home to the ruins of Gardar – a stone church constructed in the 11th century. There's an excellent hike which provides wonderful views of the colourful village, ice filled fjords, green fields and mountainous backdrop.

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 7

    Bredefjord and Narsaq

    The coast of western Greenland is famous for icebergs and we observe several glaciers at close quarters when navigating the ship along Bredefjord. At the end of a remote arm of the fjord are two giant glaciers, known locally as ‘the twins’. We navigate in the Zodiacs to get a better view of the glacial face and delight at the endless photo opportunities the ice sculptures provide us. This afternoon we visit the small community of Narsaq. What will surprise many is that the town is a centre for agriculture, including sheep farming, though fishing is still the mainstay of the local economy. Our time in Greenland has come to an end and as we depart this enchanting place in the soft evening light, we look forward to the days ahead.

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 8

    At Sea, Davis Strait towards Canada

    While sailing south towards Newfoundland our onboard experts will recap on our adventures in Greenland and prepare us for the days ahead. This is an important migration corridor for birds and whales, and we keep our eyes out for signs of wildlife from the outer decks. Large icebergs of all shapes drift on the currents of the Davis Strait and while these won't be your first iceberg sightings, seeing them in open water is an impressive sight. Our educational program continues, and our onboard experts entertain us with interactive presentations and lively discussions. Spend some time at the multimedia computers downloading and backing up your precious images.

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 9

    L'Anse aux Meadows, Newfoundland

    Having arrived in Newfoundland, our excursion this afternoon tells a story a thousand years in the making. We board the Zodiacs for a short cruise to the rocky shoreline. A millennium ago, Viking long-ships would have been found along this same beach. L’Anse aux Meadows is one of Canada’s UNESCO World Heritage Sites. This is where Norseman, Leif Erikson, (son of Eric the Red) - is thought to have founded “Vinland” around 1000 AD. As we explore the reconstructed sod huts and Norse ruins with the site’s resident archaeologist, we see evidence that the Vikings discovered North America some five hundred years prior to the arrival of Christopher Columbus.

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 10

    Woody Point, Gros Morne National Park

    Today we find ourselves anchored in majestic Bonne Bay, just offshore from the small community of Woody Point, the gateway into the southern reaches of Gros Morne National Park. This is a Registered Historic District with several significant structures along the waterfront. Gros Morne is best known for the World Heritage-listed Tablelands and is celebrated for its unique geology and exceptional scenery. Here, the Earth’s mantle is exposed on the surface – pushed up over millions of years by the movement of tectonic plates. We make a visit to the excellent Discovery Centre before continuing through the park. We explore the boreal wetland landscape, featuring dramatic rock ridges, pitcher plants, White-throated sparrows and may encounter the iconic moose as we explore the park. We meet the ship at Trout River re-boarding in the afternoon and continue our voyage southwards.

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 11

    Cape North, Nova Scotia

    Overnight we have crossed the broad Gulf of St Lawrence, which separates Newfoundland from Nova Scotia. Our final day will be spent exploring the northern reaches of Cape Breton. Cape North is a small community situated on the famous Cabot Trail and is a gateway into the Highlands National Park. There are some excellent hiking opportunities here. This is also an important summer habitat for numerous whale species and home to numerous migratory birds which we can view from the ship, the Zodiacs, while sea kayaking or onshore. Tonight, our chefs have prepared a special farewell dinner attended by the Captain of the ship. It’s a wonderful time to celebrate and reflect on a memorable journey as we sail to the final port of Sydney

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 12

    Disembark and end Sydney, Nova Scotia

    This morning we enter the port of Sydney, situated on the north coast of Cape Breton, Nova Scotia. Our fabulous trip comes to an end and we reflect on the truly memorable journey. We disembark in the morning and, while some of us will head to the airport, many will add a few extra days in Nova Scotia to enjoy the hospitality, culture and renowned seafood.

    Meals included: Breakfast
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Essential Info

Group Information

The RCGS Resolute takes a maximum capacity of 146 passengers. The Exodus group forms part of the ship’s complement, enjoying the relaxed, intimate and informal atmosphere, which breaks into smaller groups to facilitate the frequent excursions. We offer these cruises in conjunction with One Ocean Expeditions, and Exodus participants will join an international group, not all of whom have booked through Exodus. Occasionally some of these may be younger than 18 years old, the Exodus' stated minimum age for this trip.

Visas

Canada

The Government of Canada has an entry requirement, known as an Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA), for some international travellers flying into Canada. Citizens from countries other than the US who do not require a visa to enter Canada are required to obtain an eTA before entering the country. Eligible travellers will need to go online to apply for their eTA.

To apply for your eTA you will need your passport, credit or debit card and an email address. At the time of publication there was a CAD$7 fee to process your eTA. Your eTA will be valid for a period of five years, or until your passport expires. We recommend you carry a print out of your eTA approval when you travel. Please visit www.canada.ca/eTA to apply.

If you have not applied for and received authorisation via an eTA prior to travel you may be denied boarding, experience a delayed processing or be denied admission at the Canadian point of entry. However, neither possession of a visa nor meeting the basic requirements for travelling visafree on the eTA, guarantees admission to Canada. As with most countries, the final determination of admissibility is made by immigration officials at the point of entry.

Arctic

No visa required for British passport holders.

Greenland

No visa required for British passport holders.

Iceland

No visa required for British passport holders.

Vaccinations

Canada

There are no specific health risks.

Arctic

There are no specific health risks.

Greenland

There are no specific health risks.

Iceland

There are no specific health risks.

Eating and Drinking

All meals while on the ship included.

Typical Meals

The ships galley offers good quality service and cuisine throughout, with excellent chefs preparing international menus including vegetarian dishes, accompanied by a wide variety of drinks from around the world on sale.

Breakfast: Buffet style – unlimited tea and coffee, a selection of fruit juices, hot options including bacon and eggs or omelettes, a selection of bread and toast and jam/honey/marmalade, fruit and cereal.

Lunch: Three course set meal or buffet, or the occasional BBQ.

Dinner: Three or four courses with a starter of soup and/or salad, a choice of mains with at least one vegetarian option and a dessert, with tea and coffee.

Is this trip for you?

Travelling Conditions

The voyages are designed to be as flexible as possible, taking advantage of circumstances and events as they occur, as well as passengers’ wishes and particular interests wherever possible. The atmosphere onboard is relaxed and friendly with expedition staff, including naturalists and polar experts, on hand and the opportunity to mingle with people from all over the world. The ship is kept warm, clean and comfortable with a wet / mud room in which to hang gear and store boots ready for the next adventure.

On the Zodiac cruises you are sitting still for most of the time with the potential for some sea spray and a cold headwind - if you are not dressed appropriately you will get cold. On the shore excursions, the majority of landings are ‘wet’ which means that the Zodiacs beach and you are helped to slide into the ankle deep shore break before walking up onto dry land (wellington boots are issued to all passengers).

There are, of course, no paths, so be prepared for slippery, rough terrain and sometimes fairly deep snow. Back on board the cosy ship after each adventure, you can have a sauna and/or a hot shower and then relax with a tea, coffee, hot chocolate or something stronger from the bar.

Optional activities

On some occasions, space is limited on the optional activities and needs to be booked in advance. Please ask our Polar Sales team for more information if you are interested in one of the options below.

Sea kayaking option

On many of our voyages there is the chance for some members of the party to take regular sea kayak excursions in place of the Zodiac excursions. There are a limited number of kayaks on each ship, and you must book and pay for this option in advance. All kayak trips are guided, and are subject to suitable locations and weather conditions. Should the kayaking not be possible, a place on a Zodiac is always available.

Basic kayak competence is required. You will need to complete a special questionnaire outlining your previous kayaking experience – please ask for a copy of this document if you are interested in joining the sea kayaking program.

Polar Itineraries

All Polar itineraries should be treated as a guide only - it is possible that, amongst other things, the capricious nature of wind, visibility and ice, intelligence from previous sailings, changes in local landing regulations or the expert opinion of the crew onboard may lead to adjustments to the route published.

Following a review of all our trips we have categorised this trip as generally not suitable for persons of reduced mobility. However if you are a regular traveller on such trips, please contact customer services to discuss the trip and your personal condition.

Call for general departures:
020 8772 3936
Call for tailormade trips:
020 8772 3874
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Accommodation

RCGS Resolute

The Path of the Vikings - Iceland, Greenland & Canada voyage is offered on the RCGS Resolute which is a Polar Adventure Ship.  Designed for comfort, RCGS Resolute is modern, well appointed, safe and ice-strengthened. From small group sessions to briefings for all passengers, she has public spaces onboard the ship ideally suited for each and every need. Two separate bar and lounge areas featuring 180-degree views and a wonderfully stocked library provide ideal places to relax or catch up on some reading. The sumptuous meals prepared for you by our culinary team are enjoyed in either of our two dining rooms, one of which features our popular bistro menu offering quick and easy meals for those prioritizing time out on deck. Both dining rooms have ample and open seating paired with modern furnishings and large picture windows with 180-degree views. Other facilities include our theatre-style presentation room, gift-shop, gymnasium, wellness centre, hot water spa, sauna and steam room and salt water pool.

Polar Adventure Ships

These are small ice rated vessels well qualified for Polar waters. Intimate adventures are always more enjoyable with like-minded passengers and staff, so these voyages are for people who like flexible itineraries and plenty to keep them busy. Activities include frequent Zodiac excursions, trekking and many hours on deck in areas that other ships only dream about accessing. Food and staff are superb and every guest benefits from the technical advances of this superb fleet. Rest assured our Polar Adventure Ships enable any traveller to maximize their experience sensitively in the Poles.

Call for general departures:
020 8772 3936
Call for tailormade trips:
020 8772 3874
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Expert Blog Entries

As another year flies past, it’s time for us to ask ourselves one simple question: where next?

Be the first to post your review! If you have recently returned from an Exodus adventure and want to help other travellers with your feedback then simply use the link below to post your holiday review.

Dates & Prices

An overview of flight options

Exodus is committed to making joining our tours as easy as possible, wherever you live. We generally only block book seats from London, but this certainly does not mean that you need to fly from there. Depending on the route and airlines available, there will usually be various options available for those who want to fly from their local airport.

This page aims to provide a useful overview of the options available to our clients. However, the best flight arrangements should be tailored to your personal requirements, so please contact our Sales team for expert advice.

 

What kind of options do I have ?

1. We can book for you: Flights from anywhere in the world - not via London  

Depending on the route, this may be direct or via an overseas hub like Amsterdam, the Middle East or elsewhere. On short haul routes there may be direct flights with low cost airlines, charter flights or scheduled airlines. Exodus can book most, but not all, of these for you. The most appropriate airline may be different to that which we use for the group flight from London, but many people now travel on different airlines and meet up with their fellow passengers at the destination.

Pros Cons
  • May be the most direct route
  • Often the extra fare compared to the London flight is minimal.
  • As you will be in the hands a single airline for your entire journey, the airline will be responsible for your bags and your connections.
  • You may not be able to join the group transfers. However, we can usually arrange private transfers, or book your flights to try and coincide with the group transfers. See notes on transfer arrangements below.

 

2. We can book for you: Connecting flights from your local airport to London

Exodus can book connecting flights to London so you can join the group flight there. Connecting times will be followed according to airline advice, or as requested by clients. There are two types of fares we can use for this option: a 'through-fare' or a 'published fare'.
 
a) A 'through-fare' is where you will be in the main airline's care throughout. You change planes, but your bags are checked all the way through to your final destination. 

b) A 'published fare' ticket is completely seperate from your onward ticket from London. It is usually cheaper than a through-fare but will need to be paid for and issued as soon as it is booked. This can be a problem if your tour has not yet reached minimum numbers. On 'published fares' neither airline is aware that you have connecting flights, so Exodus is responsible for timing your connection, not the airlines involved. The tickets are also usually non changeable and non refundable.

Pros Cons
  • Depending on the fare type, Exodus or the airline is responsible for flight connections.
  • Through fare tickets can be expensive.
  • On a published fare, tickets must be issued immediately; tickets on published fares can be very difficult to change if onward flight times change; bags are not checked though to your final destination.
  • Published fares are non-refundable.

 

3. Booking some or all of the flights yourself

You can also book connecting air travel yourself, either to London, or all the way to the start point. There may be certain airlines or routes we don't have access to, so this is always an option. However, if you make your own travel arrangements you become liable for any delays, cancellations or missed connections, and Exodus is not required to offer refunds if you have trouble reaching the start of your trip.

Pros Cons
  • You might find cheaper fares, or routes not available to Exodus.
  • You are responsible for any delays or missed connections, and the cost of the tour is not protected should you miss your flight be cancelled.

 

 Notes on transfer arrangements

Sometimes it is possible to travel on a different airline to the group flight from London. Where this is the case, we need to think about ensuring you meet up with the group with minimum extra cost and hassle.

  • On certain trips, it is easy to arrive on a different flight and still meet the group at the hotel with time in hand. We can usually arrange private transfers (at extra cost) or offer advice on taking a taxi to the start hotel.
  • On other trips (especially in Europe), the transfer meets the group flight and then travels some distance to the first night's accommodation. Where this is the case, our Sales team will try to arrange flights that arrive before (and depart after) the group. However, we do have to make it clear in your final documentation that if your flights are delayed, the transfer cannot wait for you. While Exodus or our local operators will do what we can to help you reach the start point of the tour, any additional costs must be paid by the client. 

 

Next steps? 

Call our Sales team on: 0203 733 0698

Email your query: [email protected]

 

Please contact our specialist Polar sales team on 020 8003 9957 or at [email protected] for further dates and prices

Polar Ships: For information regarding ship specifications, visit the Polar Fleet page.

 

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Call us on 020 8772 3936