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From the Northern Lights to the Polar Night | Le Commandant Charcot

12 Days
From £ 28,533

STYLE: Small Ship Luxury Expedition Cruise 

Trip Code: ACPONLPN

DIFFICULTY RATING: 2 (Light Adventure)

Start: Paris, France

Finish: Paris, France

SHIP: Le Commandant Charcot

DestinationDestination

Arctic, Spitsbergen, Norway

DestinationDeparture Date

18/10/2024

MealsMeals

All Meals Onboard The Ship, Including In Room Dining, Beverages (Excluding Premium Labels) And In-Room Mini Bar (Excluding Champagne) 

TransportTransport

Charter Flights in Economy Class To/From Paris and Transfers to the ship  

TransportAccommodation

Cabin on board ship



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Included SightseeingIncluded Sightseeing

Arctic Ice Landings where possible, Zodiac Cruising, Onboard Expert Lectures & Briefings by the Experienced Expedition Team


NOTE: Itinerary is subject to change depending on weather & ice conditions 

OVERVIEW

Travel with featured guest Ian Dawson, British Photo Ambassador.

On this once in a lifetime journey you will journey into the polar night. As the northern winter approaches the sun hardly rises over the horizon. You will be able to enjoy long dusk, which stretches out. Sail past jagged coastlines in Norway and continue up to Spitsbergen, which will be showing it's winter splendor. Here is where you will go in search of the Northern Lights. 

Cruise onboard the Le Commandant Charcot, a premium ship that is built with a mix of luxury and expedition in mind. It is the world's only Luxury Icebreaker and can go further than most other ships for a true exploration experience. From the ship you can enjoy the winter panoramas over the Arctic Circle, while sipping on a cocktail on the outside promenade deck, or from the heated Blue Lagoon pool. 

In Norway you will visit the village of Lapland, which is located close to the northernmost point of Europe, the North Cape. Here you will see the Sami Reindeer farmers ad one of the last European indigenous people. When nightfall begins it will be time to set off and chase the Northern Lights. 

When exploring Spitsbergen the ship will sail along majestic fjords and pass by ancient glaciers. Make the most of the rarity of the daylight here and experience the long polar night. 

 

Prices are correct at time of publishing (11 June 2024) but are subject to change at any time until the time of booking and terms and conditions apply. Please contact us for more information and enquire for details and availability.

ITINERARY

Tromso & Embarkation

Today marks the start of our Arctic expedition as we begin our journey from the captivating Tromsø, nestled in the north of Norway. Known as the 'Paris of the north' by the Norwegians, this secluded town in the Troms county holds a treasure trove of neoclassical architectural marvels waiting to be explored. As we set sail, you'll soon understand why this place holds such a title, especially when you encounter the striking Arctic Cathedral. Its architectural splendor beautifully mirrors the majestic silhouette of the surrounding mountains. Get ready to embark on an Arctic cruise filled with wonder and discovery from this unique and picturesque starting point!

Alta

Located beyond the Arctic Circle, Alta, situated in the northern reaches of Norway, stands as the largest city in Finnmark county. Celebrated for the mesmerizing beauty of its Northern Lights, the town unveils itself nestled within the embrace of its namesake fjord, the 'Altafjord.' Amidst a backdrop of serene forest landscapes and pristine vistas, you'll encounter exceptional opportunities to engage in unique experiences, meeting the Sami people, who are revered as reindeer herders with deep-rooted ancestral traditions. Pursuing the elusive Northern Lights is also a featured activity on our itinerary, promising unforgettable moments in this Arctic wonderland.

Tromso

In the north of Norway, you will rediscover Tromsø, a secluded town located in the county of Troms, marking your second visit to this remarkable destination. Surrounded by breathtaking landscapes, Tromsø offers a visual feast with its snow-capped peaks, mirrored in the crystal-clear fjords that stretch across the horizon. The town itself, nestled between awe-inspiring mountain ranges and glistening waters, provides an enchanting backdrop for exploration. Take this opportunity to immerse yourself in the charm and beauty of this extraordinary place, before we set sail towards Hammerfest.

Hammerfest

Hammerfest, located on the north-western coast of the island of Kvaloya, beyond the 70th parallel north, is often considered the northernmost town in the world. Conserved in an immaculate natural setting, this charming fishing port enjoys a rich history, as is evidenced by various vestiges dating back to the Stone Age, Napoleonic wars or the Second World War. During your port of call, you will have the opportunity to discover the Struve Geodetic Arc, a chain of triangulations stretching across Europe from Hammerfest to the Black Sea, and the first technical and scientific object to become a UNESCO World Heritage Site. You will also have the opportunity to visit the Reconstruction Museum, meet the Sami people, or visit the Royal and Ancient Polar Bear Society, an emblematic spot in Hammerfest.

Sailing Along Bjornoya (Bear Island)

Halfway between Norway and Spitsbergen, you will sail not far from the coastlines of Bjørnøya, the southernmost island of Svalbard. From your ship, observe this isolated piece of land discovered in 1596 by the Dutch navigator Willem Barents, then looking for the Northwest Passage. Following a tough fight between a polar bear and the members of the expedition, he dubbed the place Bear Island. Regularly covered by a thick layer of fog, Bjørnøya shelters ameteorological station built in 1923, which is still in operation. Declared a nature reserve in 2002, the island is above all home to an enormous colony of sea birds during summer.

Hornsund

Considered Spitsbergen’s southernmost fjord, Hornsund is famous as one of the first places to have been visited in the region. In 1610, the British explorer Jonas Poole named it thus, after one of the members of his crew brought him a reindeer antler. Shortly afterwards, the first whalers settled in the region and contributed to shaping its history. As you move deeper into this fjord, whose total length is 30 kilometres (19 miles), you will find yourselves immersed in the beauty of the surrounding mountains, in the mystery emerging from these small drifting icebergs, and in the glory of this gigantic glacier standing proudly before you.

Longyearbyen, Spitsbergen

Longyearbyen is the capital of the Norwegian Svalbard archipelago, located on Svalbard’s main island, and is the northernmost territorial capital on the planet. With winter temperatures dropping to below 40°C, the landscapes of this mining town are simply breathtaking. The glaciers, the mountains stretching as far as the eye can see and the untouched nature, make you feel like you’re in completely unexplored territory.

Bellsund fjord, Spitsbergen

You will head towards the Bellsund fjord, to follow the traces of the first explorers, arriving from the Norwegian coasts, or those of the many trappers in search of game and trophies. Surprisingly rich in wildlife, the branches of the fjord separate to form two distinct valleys. Give free rein to your imagination in the heart of this majestic natural environment, where time seems to stand still.

Sailing Along Bjornoya (Bear Island)

Cruising between Norway and Spitsbergen, you'll revisit Bjørnøya, Svalbard's southernmost island, for the second time. Despite its foggy cover, the island boasts rugged cliffs, basalt beaches, and vibrant tundra vegetation. It's a haven for various seabird species, forming one of the largest colonies in the region during summer. Seal sightings are common, and occasionally, whales grace its coastal waters. The island's striking scenery and diverse wildlife make it an intriguing stop on your journey.

Honningsvåg

If you feel like you have arrived at the end of the world in Honningsvåg, it is because this is the case. Halfway between Oslo and the North Pole, it competes with Hammerfest for the status of “the northernmost town in Continental Europe”. Colourful houses light up this charming and typically Norwegian fishing port nestled in the hollows of the region’s mountainous terrain. Travellers come to stay in the village to go to the North Cape. At the end of the road, you will see the globe that indicates that you are at the very end of Europe. At this point, only the Svalbard archipelago separates you from the North Pole. There is sea as far as the eye can see. The Northern Lights, the view of the immense cliff plunging into the sea, the thousands of puffins, gannets and cormorants that spin around you: everything here is grandiose.

Reinoya Island & Lakselv

On the last day of our expedition before disembarkation, we'll encounter the small Reinøya Island, spanning a mere 3.35 km2 (1.3 square miles) situated in the heart of the Porsangerfjorden. This nature reserve may be small, but it holds numerous treasures waiting to be explored. Amidst the tranquility, witness the island’s unique geology, characterized by the whiteness of dolomite, and traces dating back a thousand years from the last ice age, whether on a hike or a Zodiac outing.

Following this memorable visit, we'll discover Lakselv, meaning “Salmon River”, located at the end of the vast Porsangerfjorden. Renowned for its abundant salmon fishing, the village is nestled amidst waters teeming with fish. Offering privileged access to magnificent surrounding nature, it preserves traces of the last ice age, notably in Trollholmsund, showcasing dolomites with surreal silhouettes—an extraordinary sight not to be missed!

Disembarkation

Today, as our expedition draws to a close, it's time to bid farewell to your fellow explorers and guides before disembarking in Lakselv. This marks the end of our incredible journey, filled with remarkable encounters and unforgettable experiences.

DOWNLOAD ITINERARY PDF
Le Commandant Charcot

Le Commandant Charcot

A sleek and elegant vessel with an intricate dose of luxury and revolutionary technology. 

Sailing under the French Flag, Le Commandant Charcot is the worlds only Luxury Icebreaker. A design with sustainable development at its core, Le Commandant is the first Hybrid luxury Polar Exploration Vessel to be powered by liquefied natural gas (LNG). Optimized with energy saving solutions, reduced energy consumption and advanced waste water treatment, this vessel truly combines luxury with a unique focus on the sustainability of the spellbinding and wonderful destinations it explores. 

This ship is one of the few in existence that can reach remote areas such as the North and South Poles and with it's ice breaking capabilities can go further than the rest, to really give a once in a lifetime experience.  

With just 123 cabins. including 68 suites with private terraces this ship remains true to the philosophy of providing every guest with the relaxed ambience of travelling on a private yacht. Even at the extreme temperatures of the poles, this vessel promises the upmost care for intimate comfort, discrete service, incredible gastronomy and extensive luxury amenities including spas, a hot and cold snow cabin and an immersive wellness center. The ship also has over 300 works of art and an onboard pianist. 

Enjoy an excellent expedition experience, with a team of 23 expert naturalist guides who will lead you into some of the most remote regions of the world. When onboard you will be able to indulge in a range of culinary delights from the main restaurant Nuna, or the outdoor restaurant Sila, which overlooks the heated pool onboard - the Blue Lagoon. With the choice of French and international cuisine. Your cruise will include fine wines, an in room included minibar and 24 hour room service, as well as a range of entertainment and expert lectures. The perfect mix of exploration and comfort. 

 

Ice Class: Length: 150m (492ft)
Breadth: 28m (91ft)Max
Draft: Cruising
Speed:
Electricity: Passenger
Capacity:
270

View Ship Details

Accommodation

We believe that appropriate accommodation should add to the authentic travel experience, as well as providing utmost enjoyment. For that reason our accommodation is scrutinised by our staff on the ground frequently, ensuring the properties adhere to our high standards. This key will help you understand the levels of accommodation available on this tour.

Standard

Comfortable properties with dependable facilities and service.

Superior

Comfortable properties with dependable facilities and service.

Deluxe

Luxurious properties with impeccable facilities and service.

OPTIONAL ACTIVITIES

Optional Activities vary for each itinerary. Limited spaces available. Contact your Destination Specialist for pricing & availability.

Kayaking

Experience the unforgettable thrill and serenity of kayaking in Antarctica as part of a small, expertly guided paddling group.

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Pricing per person & date

From the Northern Lights to the Polar Night | Le Commandant Charcot from £ 28,532
Departing Ending Duration
18 Oct 2024 29 Oct 2024 12

Important Information

  • INCLUSIONS 

    All accommodation on board Le Commandant Charcot
    Charter flights to/from Paris in Economy Class (Upgrades avaialble*)
    Meet & greet at the airport by our local English-speaking representative.
    Transfer to the pier for embarkation.
    All meals whilst on board including snacks
    All scheduled landings and excursions
    Guiding and lectures by English-speaking expedition leader and team
    Expedition jacket provided (yours to keep) 
    A pair of expedition boots for use during your voyage 
    Open Bar (excluding premium brands)
    Room Service & Mini Bar (excluding Champagne) 
    All port taxes

     

    EXCLUSIONS 

    Airfares not mentioned above
    transfers not mentioned in itinerary
    Visa fees (if applicable)
    Travel Insurance
    Personal expenses such as laundry, on-board communication (telephone calls, faxes)
    Gratuities for the crew (recommend US$15 per person per day)
    Optional Activities whilst on-board

  • 2 (Light Adventure)
  • Available upon request, contact us for more details. 

  • Charter flights from Paris to Tromoso, Norway on Day 1 is included in cruise cost. Highly recommend to arrive in Paris one day prior to commencement of itinerary. 
    Charter flights from Lakselv, Norway are included on Day 12. Please note the flights are included in Economy Class, but business class upgrades may be available. Please contact us for more information. 

     

    Prices are based on per person, twin share* (unless otherwise stated for triple/quad cabins) 

    Prices are correct at time of publishing but are subject to change at any time. 

    Itinerary is subject to change depending on weather and ice conditions

  • Departure date, season, availability & currency fluctuation