Day 1 - Arrive Ottawa
Welcome to Ottawa, where your Arctic adventure begins. Arrive into the city any time today, and independently transfer to the group hotel (accommodation for the night is included). On arrival at the hotel, you'll receive a welcome letter outlining the departure information for the following day’s flight. An agent will be available in the lobby to answer any questions you may have.
There’s plenty to see and do if you arrive early into Canada's capital. Browse the artwork in the beautiful National Gallery of Canada, take a stroll along Rideau Canal or soak up the buzzy atmosphere of ByWard Market.
Notes: If you arrive earlier or wish to extend your stay and need accommodation, please ask Intrepid or your agent for details and costs.
Day 2 - Embarkation in Iqaluit
After breakfast today, the group will take a transfer to the airport and board a charter flight to Iqaluit, the territorial capital of Nunavut. Although the flight time will be communicated to you on Day 1 when you arrive at the hotel, weather conditions can sometimes lead to a change in the schedule. Please be ready to depart the hotel at any time.
It's important to note that on the flight to Iqaluit, there's a strict luggage limit: 20 kilograms (44 pounds) of checked luggage and five kilograms (11 pounds) of cabin baggage. Should you have additional luggage, it can be stored at the hotel in Ottawa (you can't take it with you on the plane).
On arrival into Iqaluit, a Zodiac boat will transfer you to the ship. The tides here are the second highest in Canada, rising up to 12 metres (39 feet) two times a day. Once on board, get settled and meet your Expedition Team, captain and crew.
Day 3 - Monumental Island
Off the southern coast of Baffin Island, this small, isolated island is completely uninhabited, except for the Arctic animals that call it home. In the company of your experienced expedition staff, explore the rugged shoreline in a Zodiac, scouting for hauled-out walruses and polar bears prowling for food.
The following optional activities are available on some or all of this trip's departures. Please note that they must be booked in advance (additional costs may apply), and that space is limited.
Taken in small groups of maximum 16 people, multiple times per voyage, kayaking adventures are only conducted during calm weather conditions. Travellers with all levels of kayaking experience can take part, however if you are a novice, please take an introductory course prior to the voyage (and make sure it covers how to do a wet exit). Even if you do have some experience, we recommend doing some pre-trip practice, so you're comfortable out on the icy waters.
Hiking is a great way to appreciate the immense windswept landscapes of the Arctic. The tundra comes alive with colourful shrubbery during the brief Arctic summer. Whether you're exploring communities, glacial shorelines or animal habitats, each hike is different. Your Expedition Team will advise you as to the difficulty levels of each optional hike when you're there.
Day 4 - Kekerten Island and Pangnirtung
Today you'll cross the Arctic Circle. Disembark at uninhabited Kekerten Island and wander around the historical remains of a whaling station. This National Historic Site of Canada was charted by Scottish whaler Captain William Penny in 1840, and soon became a major whaling destination. The site was abandoned in 1926, after whaling declined and local Inuit families moved to the mainland community of Pangnirtung.
As you cruise towards picturesque Pangnirtung, you’ll see why this Inuit hamlet at the mouth of the Pangnirtung Fjord is often called the Switzerland of the Arctic. Tucked beneath the snow-capped peaks of Mount Duval, Pang is also a renowned artists’ haven. Stop by the studio at the Uqqurmiut Centre for Arts and Crafts to view the traditional tapestries that have attracted worldwide attention for decades. Here, you’ll also get a sense of local Inuit activities, such as sealing, fishing and hunting.
Day 5 - At Sea
As the ship steams briefly south, enjoy views of the southern coast of Baffin Island. Today will be spent at sea, so rug up and join the expedition staff on deck as they keep a look out for birds and whales. This is the perfect chance to relax with a glass of wine or hot tea and take in the wondrous beauty around you.
Day 6 - Cumberland Peninsula
Continue sailing around the Cumberland Peninsula. The weather will guide us as to where we make our shore landings via Zodiac.
Day 7 - Sam Ford Fjord
Situated about 450 kilometres (380 miles) north of the Arctic Circle, Sam Ford Fjord is one of the most isolated places on the planet. Even so, this little-explored part of Baffin Island is one of the world’s best big-wall playgrounds, attracting adventurous climbers eager to scale the sheer rock faces shooting straight out of the sea. Make sure you have your camera ready!
Tonight, bid farewell to the Canadian shoreline as you traverse Baffin Bay. Your expedition staff will preview the excitement to come in Greenland.
Day 8 - Uummannaq and Qilaqitsoq, Greenland
In the morning, visit the abandoned settlement of Qilaqitsoq, where two graves containing eight fully dressed mummies were discovered in 1972. Make sure you're out on deck as we approach Uummannaq. Founded as a Danish colony in 1758 on the Nuussuaq mainland, this former seal-hunting town of colourful houses perched beneath a heart-shaped mountain is very scenic. A hike up the town's gently sloping hill yields panoramic views of icebergs and mountains.
Day 9 - Eqip Sermia
Today, sail to one of the most breathtaking sights in Greenland: the Eqip Sermia Glacier. Staying at a safe distance, listen to the roar of ice calving into the sea as you round the front of the glacier.
Day 10 - Ilulissat
Have your camera out as you approach Ilulissat. The nearby Ilulissat Icefjord has fascinated scientists for over 250 years. This UNESCO World Heritage Site forms the sea mouth of the Sermeq Kujalleq (Jakobshavn Glacier), the fastest-moving glacier in the world, which produces at least ten percent of all of Greenland’s calf ice. In fact, the young icebergs you see here will eventually end up off the coast of Newfoundland. While exploring this natural phenomenon you’ll be rewarded with breathtaking vistas of glaciers and ice caps.
Day 11 - Itilleq
Surrounded by sea, fjords and mountains, the picturesque village of Itilleq is situated on an island with no freshwater source (a local facility desalinates seawater for drinking). The community, whose main trade is fishing and hunting, will welcome us and show us their way of life. You'll even get to join locals in a friendly soccer match!
Day 12 - Disembark in Kangerlussuaq
Disembark today in Kangerlussuaq, a former U.S. military base. Your ship is scheduled to arrive at the pier between 7 and 8 am local time. After breakfast, and once the ship has docked, you'll have time to bid farewell to your Expedition Team and shipmates before completing disembarkation. The whole process takes about an hour, after which you'll transfer to the airport for the return charter flight to Ottawa. Spend the final night back in Canada's capital (the hotel is included).
Day 13 - Depart Ottawa
Today, your Arctic adventure comes to an end after breakfast. Make your way to Ottawa's airport or spend a relaxing day exploring in the city.
Please note that weather conditions may delay our arrival, and airline schedule changes have also been known to occur. Booking flexible tickets is always encouraged, as we cannot be held responsible for delays due to unforeseen circumstances.
Accommodation, Food (as stated), Transport, Selected Activities
Flights, Travel Insurance, Visa, Vaccinations or Personal Spending Money