The Ultimate Winter Expedition Cruise from Dover

Resort: The Ultimate Winter Expedition Cruise from Dover
Operator: Hurtigruten
Destination: Europe
Price From: £4749.00

This extensive winter expedition cruise brings you to a wide range of Norways coastal communities, snow-covered mountains, and fjords, hopefully under the Northern Lights.


Above the Arctic Circle

Youll spend over 10 days above the Arctic Circle during winter, chasing Norway’s Northern Lights. Learn about polar exploration history in Arctic capital Troms, admire the Northern Lights Cathedral in Alta, and remember WWII British heroes in Narvik.

Youll find the fishing villages of Svolvr and Reine in the Lofoten Islands picture-perfect, surrounded by mountains dusted in snow. Well then sail to the top of the European continent at North Cape, the turning point of your cruise.


Off the beaten track

Thanks to our smaller ship size and expert knowledge of the Norwegian coast, well bring you to hidden places few ever see. Sail into spectacular Hjrundfjord, discover geologically diverse Senja island, and visit remote but charming communities in Kalvg and Mostery.

Youll go into full expedition mode along the Helgeland coast and Vesterlen, exploring these scenic areas based on the local weather conditions on the day. Your adventure will also take you to the beautiful city of Bergen, the bookshops of Fjrland, and to Loen at the heart of Nordfjord.

By the end of this great adventure into the Arctic and back to Dover, youll have made many special memories. Dont be surprised if youve fallen in love with the Norwegian coast, perhaps even witnessing the magnificent Northern Lights several times.


What’s included

Included in your voyage:

Expedition Cruise

  • Expedition cruise in a cabin of your choice
  • Breakfast, lunch and dinner including beverages (house beer and wine, sodas, and mineral water) in restaurants Aune and Fredheim
  • A la carte restaurant Lindstrm included for suite guests
  • Complimentary tea and coffee
  • Complimentary Wi-Fi on board. Be aware that we sail in remote areas with limited connection. Streaming is not supported.
  • Complimentary reusable water bottle to use at water refill stations on board
  • English-speaking Expedition Team who organise and accompany activities on board and ashore
  • Range of included activities

Not included in your voyage:

  • International flights
  • Travel insurance
  • Luggage handling
  • Optional shore excursions with our local partners
  • Optional small-group activities with our Expedition Team
  • Optional treatments in the onboard wellness and spa area

Full Itinerary

DAY 1 DOVER, UK Setting off from the White Cliffs

Estimated time of departure is 16:00

All aboard at Dover! MS Maud is here, ready and waiting to bring you north to Norways magical snow-covered landscapes on the hunt for one of natures greatest spectacles: The Northern Lights.

If youve time, take a walk alongside or atop the iconic white cliffs of Dover that have become a symbol for England. One of the best places to do so is at St. Margarets Bay which offers great views of the chalky coastline from its wide shingle beach.

Once on board the ship, youll pick up your complimentary expedition jacket, settle into your cabin, explore the ship and attend a mandatory safety drill. After the first of many delicious dinners and a welcome toast by the Captain, youll meet your expert Expedition Team.

They are your knowledgeable lecturers, warm hosts, and good-natured guides throughout your journey. Many grew up and live in the places youll be visiting and are passionate about sharing their home with you.

First and foremost though, they are there to keep you safe and well. Theyll be making it a priority to run through important health and safety aspects with you and your fellow guests.

When the ship sets sail, well pass the white cliffs of Dover and head up to the North Sea. Stretch your sea legs and get to know MS Maud, your cosy home away from home. If the weather holds, take in the sea air from out on deck. Or park yourself in the Explorer Lounge and Bar to watch the world go by from the panoramic windows, maybe together with a relaxing glass of wine. Your epic adventure to the Arctic is officially underway!


DAY 2 AT SEA Norway bound

This day at sea gives you all the time you need to ease into your journey. Youll definitely want to start enjoying onboard facilities like the hot tubs, sauna, and indoor gym. But youll likely also be striking up a camaraderie with the Expedition Team as well as other crew members and guests.

The Expedition Team will begin the first in their series of insightful lectures over at the Science Center. Each member of the Expedition Team are experts on different subjects, and youll find them to be walking, talking treasure troves of stories and information.

Theyll share their extensive knowledge about the places, history, nature, people and natural phenomena we are likely to encounter during this winter cruise along the Norwegian coast. Todays topics might include the geology of the North Sea or the science behind the Northern Lights.

Even as no one can completely predict the weather, wind and waves on the North Sea are known to be a bit choppy at this time of year. Our Captains goal is to bring us into Bergen the next day, but where nature is involved, nothing can be completely set in stone.

This is just part and parcel of the expedition experience, adding extra suspense and excitement to your adventure. Rest assured that well be doing our best to make your cruise as safe and as smooth as possible, even if it means being flexible and adapting our plans to factor in the elements.


DAY 3 BERGEN, NORWAY City of Seven Mountains

Depending on the weather when crossing the North Sea, we aim to arrive in Bergen in the afternoon. As our first port of call in Norway, and one of the countrys most picturesque cities, Bergen wont disappoint. Founded in 1070 AD, Bergen was Norways capital for many years, and youll see that the city has retained a great deal of its local character, heritage and charm.

Your included activity in Bergen is an excursion to Mount Flyen. Well hop on Hurtigruten buses from where the ship docks and drive to the Flibanen funicular. The ride to the top of the mountain takes just six minutes. At the summit, 320 metres high, bask in stunning views over the city surrounded by seven mountains and the sea. If theres time, we might also have an opportunity to venture into the alpine forest here for a short hike.

Once back in the centre of Bergen, be sure to stroll through the historic UNESCO-listed Bryggen district with its colourful wooden wharfs. The area dates back to the 14th century and now houses boutique stores selling a range of Norwegian arts and crafts. Across from Bryggen is Bergens famous fish market which is full of sights, sounds and scents to savour.


DAY 4 FJRLAND, NORWAY The longest fjord in Norway

In the morning we sail into Sognefjorden, nicknamed the King of the Fjords, as it is the longest and deepest fjord in Norway. Stretching 205 kilometres inland from the coast, we plan to cruise deep into the fjord to the tiny hamlet of Fjrland.

Only 300 people live here, and you get to go ashore to discover this idyllic village with many charming old buildings. Fjrland is a designated Norwegian Book Town, and picturesque second-hand book shops and stands can be found all over the small village.

This is also the place where Sognefjorden meets one of Norways best-known glaciers, Jostedalsbreen. Its the largest glacier on the European continent and has several smaller glacier arms stretching out in many directions, including Byabreen and Supphellebreen.

This makes Fjrland a perfect place to learn more about how glaciers created the beautiful fjords of Norway, which makes a visit to the Norwegian Glacier Museum a perfect included activity of the day. At the award-winning museum, designed by world famous architect Sverre Fehn, youll engage with hands-on exhibits that explain why glacier ice is blue and how the fjords were formed. You can even perform a few experiments with 1,000-year-old glacier ice and watch a panoramic film about Europes largest glacier.


DAY 5 HJRUNDFJORDEN, NORWAY Exceptional natural beauty

Like famous Geirangerfjord next door, Hjrundfjord is part of the UNESCO designated Fjords Norway area which is notable for exceptional natural beauty. Surrounded by the Sunnmre Alps with peaks soaring 1,700 metres straight up from the sea, it is one of the most scenic fjords in all of Norway and still undiscovered by most other cruise lines.

On a clear day, youll get the full 360 sensory experience: the bluest skies, the coniferous forests, perhaps in fall foliage and grazing pastures covering the mountainsides. The still, pristine waters then reflect the superb scenery in all its glory, merging the fjord and landscape perfectly.

We anchor close to either Urke or Sb, both settlements in the fjord and a local tender boat will take you ashore to experience Norwegian nature and culture.

Sign up for optional excursions to explore the area further. Join a guided walk taking in villages along the Hjrundfjord and learn about the history, nature and royal connections of this splendid beauty spot.

Alternatively, you can opt for more exhilarating, pulse-raising excursions such as hiking up the mountain for incredible views. Or find yourself kayaking along the fjord, the exquisite silence broken only by the sound of your own paddle.


DAY 6 TRNDELAG, NORWAY Kos and frilufsliv combined

Today, well explore rarely seen areas of the rugged and raw coast of Trndelag on our way north towards Lofoten.

This region of Norway lies at the heart of the Norwegian coast, both geographically and culturally. The beautiful city of Trondheim used to be the countrys capital and King Olav, later beatified as Saint Olav, is buried in the citys Notre-Dame-inspired Nidaros Cathedral. King Olav fell during a battle at Stiklestad, also found along Trndelags coast. His martyrdom there subsequently paved the way for the conversion of Norway from paganism to Christianity.

When Hurtigruten started sailing north of Trndelag in 1893, much was still unknown about the coastline. Over the years, weve become experts in these waters. Today, we are the only ones with the maritime knowledge and skill to take you through the many skerries and islets, and past fjord after fjord.

Trndelag is also the home of kos a uniquely Norwegian state of mind that celebrates the simple pleasures of warmth, kindness and togetherness. As we explore Trndelags coast, youll combine kos with another quintessentially Norwegian concept: an intense love of nature and the great outdoors known as friluftsliv.

As part of an authentic adventure, its the weather that will determine our exact route and activities today. If the weather is pleasant, we can stay out among the islands along the coast. If otherwise, we can head into one of the many deep fjords. What may often look like a small gap in the coastline actually hides a deep fjord system which few ever visit. Unless youre sailing with us, like you are!

Once the elements have helped us decide on our destination for the day, well drop anchor and use our small exploration boats to get to shore. If conditions are right, youll be able to pick optional excursion hikes or kayaking, or possibly even both.


DAY 7 SVOLVR, NORWAY Enchantment in the Lofoten Islands

There are just a few places on Earth where you can sail north of the Arctic Circle in wintertime. The Norwegian coast is one of them. The ship will officially cross over the Arctic Circle sometime in the morning.

To mark the occasion in the tradition of Norwegian sailors, well be inviting you out on deck for a special ceremony. Exactly what happens is something youll just have to find out on your cruise!

The Lofoten Islands are one of the most spectacular locations in all of Norway and maybe even the world. As we approach the archipelago, the sight of the massive wall of mountains and dramatic peaks rising up out of the sea is something youll never forget. Serene fishing villages sit nestled in the sheltered coves, all the more magical if dusted with the seasons snow and if the aurora is seen swirling above.

We sail along Vestfjord and arrive in Svolvr in the afternoon. This is the largest town in Lofoten with about 4,800 residents, many of whom work as fishermen. There are shops and art galleries to browse along the seafront promenade and rows of rorbuer, fishing huts, to admire.

You might spot wooden racks called hjell dotted around the shores of the town too. Locally caught cod is dried on these racks and later turned into trrfisk, or stockfish in English, and prized as a local delicacy. Fishing is clearly an important way of life in Lofoten and the lecture for the day may focus on how cod effectively helped to build Norway into a country. From where you get off the ship, its a short walk to your inclusive visit to the multicoloured Magic Ice bar. The former fish-freezing warehouse now displays a range of selfie-suitable ice sculptures that depict Lofoten life and Viking culture. Enjoy a signature spirit to warm you up, served in an ice glass of course!

Your expert Expedition Team will also flex their local knowledge by handpicking safe and spectacular hiking trails or snowshoeing areas to offer as optional excursions.


DAY 8-9 NARVIK, NORWAY The Battle of Narvik

We arrive into Narvik in the morning, and well stay in port until tomorrow afternoon, giving you time to really explore. The town has a spectacular setting on a peninsula surrounded by three fjords: The Ofotfjord, Rombaken, and Beisfjord.

The multiple mountains also help to shelter its popular ski slopes from strong coastal winds. And while Narvik is one of the most northerly towns in the world, some 220 kilometres within the Arctic Circle, it enjoys a milder climate than expected thanks to the North Atlantic Current.

Modern Narvik developed as an all-year port for Swedish iron mines, which made the town a strategic target for Germany during World War II. Youll visit the Narvik War Museum to see exhibits and artifacts from the war, learning about the heroism of British and Allied troops in liberating the town from the Nazis.

Aside from the museum, you can enjoy galleries, shops, and restaurants which specialise in locally-sourced seafood from the fjords and reindeer meat from the mountains.

Optional excursions including riding the cable car to the top of Mount Narvik for the breathtaking views or hikes, snowshoeing or kayaking on the fjords. You might also go ice-fishing in small lakes close to Narvik or meet local Smi who are indigenous to the area.

There could also be an optional excursion to Polarparken, the largest and northernmost animal park in the world. The likes of wolves, bears, lynx, moose, and reindeer roam within huge enclosures. If you visit at feeding time, you might be able to glimpse these animals close up.


DAY 10 RISYHAMN/SORTLAND, NORWAY A hikers paradise

We arrive in Vesterlen early in the morning. It spans an area from Andya in the north to Sortland in the south. Few have ever heard of Vesterlen and even fewer have explored its wild and diverse beauty. Our plan is to let you spend the entire day doing exactly that.

Vesterlen is known as a hiker’s paradise, offering both easy hikes for great view and more challenging hikes. We also plan to put our kayaks in the water while we are in port, giving you the possibility to join an optional kayak activity. Whales are often spotted in this area in the winter, so you might even get to see the from your kayak.

Depending on the weather for the day, we will dock in Sortland, Risyhamn or Harstad. Sortland is the administrative centre of the area, and with a population of about 10,000 people, its the largest town in Vesterlen. Its nicknamed the blue city in the straight, due to the many blue houses in the city centre.

Risyhamn has approximately 200 inhabitants, making it a small village even by Norwegian standards. But the first settlements here date back to the Stone Age thanks to teeming fishing grounds and natural shelter from wind and waves. To get to Risyhamn, we have to sail through Risyrenna, an artificial channel finished in 1922 specifically for Hurtigruten to get access to Vesterlen and Risyhamn.

Should the weather conditions be harsh today, we will port in Harstad, located a little further inland. The church just outside of Harstad is considered to be the worlds northernmost medieval church. Next to is Trondenes Historical Center and the Adolfkanonen, an enormous cannon from WWII and the last remaining one of four built by the Nazis. Harstad also has a lot of splendid scenery for you to explore on an optional hike.


DAY 11 TROMS, NORWAY Gateway to the Arctic

Its time to explore Troms, capital of the Arctic. But before we do, well be on the watch for humpback whales out on deck or in the Explorer Lounge. Families of these gentle giants are known to frequent the winter waters here, feeding on the abundant herring. The Expedition Team will also be on the lookout and alert you to any sightings.

Well reach the city of Troms in the early morning and well spend the entire day and evening exploring its fascinating history, culture and bold architecture. The Arctic Cathedral is one of the most striking landmarks in Troms, especially when lit up at night. It features an attractive, huge stained-glass window that is well worth seeing up close.

Historically, Troms was a frontier town for returning hunters and explorers and acted as a launch point for several Arctic expeditions. Today, the city is often called the Paris of the North because of its international and cultural diversity.

You can busy yourself by browsing the shops or sampling the regions fresh produce in a range of restaurants. Feel like meeting some of the friendly locals? Troms is home to the worlds northernmost brewery, Mack Bryggeri, which also runs lhallen, a lively pub where townspeople go for a chat and a few pints.

Your included activity in Troms is a visit to the Polar Museum which is housed in a converted 1830s warehouse on the seafront. Youll enjoy exhibitions that cover the citys heritage as a base for famous trappers Henry Rudi and Wanny Wolstad, the first female hunter in Svalbard. Troms also played a crucial role in the expeditions of legendary explorers Fridtjof Nansen and Roald Amundsen.

Other winter activities available in Troms include optional excursions with our Expedition Team on nature hikes, snowshoeing, and aurora-hunting bus rides. And like many places in Arctic Norway, when there is enough snow later in winter, the landscape becomes the ideal place to engage in some exhilarating dog sledding.


DAY 12 HONNINGSVG, NORWAY At the edge of Europe

Start the day by arriving at the small town of Honningsvg. Youll now visit one of the northernmost points in Europe as part of an included excursion.

The scenic bus ride from Honningsvg passes small bays and tiny villages, then crosses a mountain plateau before arriving at spectacular North Cape. At 711021N, it is just 2,100 kilometres away from the Geographic North Pole, with only the Svalbard Archipelago in between.

Stand at the cliffs edge and gaze out across the sparkling sea. The North Cape is the closest you may ever get to the top of the world. Theres the obligatory selfie at the Globe Monument to snap before visiting the North Cape Hall for several exhibits and a short film which chronicle the history of the cape. Back in Honningsvg, enjoy a stroll by the pretty harbour, browsing the charming shops, houses and church. Like many towns in northern Norway, fishing is the main source of income here. The local restaurants offer fresh fish and seafood, with king crabs available all year round. This is the ships turning point and from here, we start our return trip southbound.


DAY 13-14 ALTA, NORWAY The City of the Northern Lights

Alta lies well above the Arctic Circle at 70 degrees north. This is one of the northernmost towns in the world with a population over 10,000 and the biggest city in the vast wilderness of Troms and Finnmark County, making it the perfect destination for winter activities.

Well arrive here early in the morning and well stay until tomorrow afternoon. The town is directly beneath the Auroral Oval, a zone known for consistent Northern Lights activity. If the heavens arent overcast, and the conditions are right, you might well be in for quite the show…

Youll learn more about the aurora at the modern Northern Lights Cathedral in Alta, situated at the end of a cute pedestrian street. The titanium-clad building and its spiral belfry dominate the skyline here, all the more impressive when illuminated at night.

There is an interactive exhibition in the cathedral that chronicles how Norwegian scientist Kristian Birkeland established Alta as an epicentre for ground-breaking Northern Lights research in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Youll also be treated to a classical concert in the cathedral as part of your visit.

The following day will prove to you that there is much more to do in Alta besides hunting for the Northern Lights. Alta is home to many dogsledding teams, some of which compete in the biggest races in the world. You can visit one of the teams during an optional excursion, go on snowmobile tours, mountain hiking or riding snow-suitable fat bikes in the hills around Alta.

Troms and Finnmark county also forms part of the traditional lands of the indigenous Smi whose livelihoods revolve around semi-nomadic reindeer herding. Not far from Alta is Mze, a Smi village located along Kautokeino River, that you can visit and experience Smi culture and food as part of an optional excursion.

When more snow falls as winter progresses, Alta is also prime territory for visits to snow hotels, dog sledding and snowmobiling. For example, the ice hotel in Sorrisniva has a new design every year and is open to visitors for tours. You will also be able to join optional excursions to go snowshoeing and hiking in the incredible tundra wilderness.


DAY 15 SENJA, NORWAY Microcosm of Norway

Today, we dock at Senja, one of the most ruggedly beautiful and less-visited islands in Norway. Youll be awestruck by the scenery on display here and understand why it made CNN travels list for 10 of the worlds most beautiful islands.

We will find a location to drop anchor, possibly on one of the ports on the outside if weather permits. Should the weather be rough, we might move to Finnsnes. Either way, everything is set for a great day for exploring.

Senja is Norways second largest island but counts fewer than 8,000 inhabitants, most of whom are employed in fishing and aquaculture. The captain will decide on a location to drop anchor or a port where we can dock. Should the weather be rough on the coast side, we will seek more shelter in the bays or inlets.

Sometimes referred to as Norway in miniature, the island boasts diverse landscapes that seem to change in the blink of an eye. Senjas northern coastline is characterised by lofty mountains plummeting straight into the sea, interspersed with isolated coves and sandy beaches that fringe crystal clear turquoise waters.

Southern Senja is distinguished by rocky coastline and pine forests and is home to nderdalen National Park. The eastern side of Senja has gentler, more forgiving landscapes with rolling hills and birch forests.


DAY 16 REINE, NORWAY Idyllic island life

In the morning, we dock into the picture-perfect fishing village of Reine back in the Lofoten Islands. This is where red-painted, snow-covered rorbuer cling to a string of islands beneath sharp, dark grey granite mountain ranges. The 450-metre tall Reinebringen is one of the most distinctive peaks, particularly dramatic when layered with snow.

The combination of setting and colour makes Reine one of the most photographed landscapes in all of Norway. Youll be hoping the Northern Lights are active above the village when we are there, completing the composition of your own photo of this piece of paradise.

After marveling at the scenery and discovering pretty Reine, youll go on your included activity for today. A 30-minute bus ride will take you to , one of the best-preserved traditional fishing villages in Norway.

At the heart of the tiny village is the Norwegian Fishing Village Museum which covers the importance and development of fishing in Lofoten over the last 250 years. Exploring at your leisure, youll soon discover that the village is the museum and the museum is the village.

Later, we return to Reine where there may be optional excursions to go on hikes with the Expedition Team or even try some winter kayaking. The views here will certainly tempt you to sign up to either. Youll then rejoin the ship and marvel more at the surrounding scenery which is spell-bindingly beautiful, whether washed in the lights of the aurora or not.


DAY 17 AT SEA Southbound across the Arctic Circle

Today you can spend time in the ships lounge, soaking in a hot tub, or out on deck. Whatever you do, dont take your eyes off the scenery as we sail through Helgeland county, characterised by pointed mountains and thousands of islands.

Pick out the peaks of the Seven Sisters mountain range, thought to be the petrified bodies of seven troll sisters caught out at sunrise. Youll likely be amazed at Torghatten mountain too, with its distinct hole right through the middle. Local legend states that the mountain was in fact the troll-kings hat which turned to stone when it was pierced through by an arrow.

The Expedition Team will continue their onboard lectures which may cover local folklore and fairytales or a history of navigation along the coast from lighthouses to satellites. Or perhaps pick up tips from the professional onboard photographer on how best to capture the aurora when they appear.


DAY 18 LOEN, NORWAY Fjord side to mountain top in five

We start the day with some scenic cruising into Nordfjord, passing Hornelen, Europes highest sea cliff, early in the morning. The fjord run offs from Jostedalsbreen, Europe’s largest mainland glacier, and flows west into the ocean just south of the Stadlandet peninsula.

It would make sense if lectures for today focus on the geology of Norway, covering the formation of its fjords, mountains and glaciers. You might also learn more about the Viking culture that used to inhabit the region and their thirst for exploration that still beats in the hearts of Norwegians today.

Youll spot numerous old fishing communities located along the fjord that actually date back to pre-Viking times. One such place is Loen, where we arrive around noon. In the shadow of the mighty Jostedalsbreen glacier, at the very heart of Nordfjord, Loen is the perfect place to explore the gorgeous surrounds.

We use our small boats to land at a floating jetty which is conveniently also a starting point for the Loen Skylift. The cable car climbs 1,011 metre to the top of Mount Hoven in only five minutes. At the summit, youll be treated to an unforgettable vista over the fjord. Mount Skla and Lake Lo can be seen to the east, and Jostedalsbreen Glacier and Olden to the south.

With these panoramas all around you, you can participate in several optional winter activities on the mountain, such as snowshoeing or sledding. If time and weather allow, there might also be an opportunity to do some thrilling winter kayaking on the fjord.


DAY 19 KALVG, NORWAY The hidden Frozen Bay

We welcome you to the little fishing village of Kalvg after breakfast, situated far out on the coastline with the open North Sea to the west. Its name literally means Frozen Bay in the Old Norse. This probably gives you an indication that it isnt always possible for our ship to make a landing here and that it does depends on the local weather and sea conditions at the time.

If and when you do come ashore here, youll discover one of the best kept secrets of the Norwegian coast. No other expedition ships visit Kalvg so youll experience an authentic slice-of-life community who will likely be thrilled to have visitors.

As part of our traditional Norwegian coastal voyage, our Captains have sailed these waters for decades, always wishing there was time to stop and show you around this oh-so-charming village. Weve listened to their expert recommendation and thats now exactly what youll get to do on this expedition cruise.

Admire an open-air art exhibition and walk around Kalvgs collection of old waterfront buildings, from restored wooden wharfs to herring salting warehouses. Cosy-looking houses cluster together around the bay, the reflections of their lights shimmering like candles in the waters below. The wonderful wintery atmosphere is even more captivating if you come when the village is coated with a snug blanket of snow.


DAY 20 MOSTERY, NORWAY Exploring Norwegian heritage

Your final day of exploration begins as we arrive at Mostery and Klostery in the morning, two of the myriads of islands that lie around the city of Stavanger. The islands are relatively exposed to the sea, so our going ashore here will be decided based on how kind the waves and wind are on the day.

Mostery is a lovely island made up of a mixture of pastures for cattle, horticulture, and cute neighbourhoods all around. To the west of the island is Fjly fort, a small coastal battery built by the German army in 1941 during World War II.

Klostery occupies less than a square mile but is home to the historic Utstein Abbey and the 800-year-old Utstein Church. The abbey is Norways best-preserved medieval monastery sitting in beautiful surroundings. Parts of the monastery are hired out as a venue for concerts, seminars, and conventions. On arrival, you might be greeted by guides in medieval costume.

The islands are connected by bridges and tunnels and all roads here lead to the city of Stavanger on the mainland.

This is the oil and energy capital of Norway, an international, cosmopolitan city which is as hip as it is historic. You can learn more about Norways off-shore wealth on an optional excursion visit to the Norwegian Petroleum Museum. It is possibly the only one of its kind in all of Europe and built as a replica of an oil platform.

Few places in Norway have embraced the foodie scene as well as Stavanger. The citys Michelin-starred restaurants have helped earn it the nickname of The Food Pantry of Norway. You can stroll down vre Holmgate and take your pick of caf, pub, restaurant or boutique store.

While modernity thrives in avant garde gastronomy and Scandi street art, the citys proud history is also never far from sight. Take a walk around the Gamle Stavanger neighbourhood which features 170 of Europes best-preserved wooden houses from the 18th century. You can also see Norways oldest domkirke, cathedral, constructed in the Anglo-Norman style around 1125 by an English Bishop, and virtually unchanged since the 1300s.


DAY 21 AT SEA Headed home

Your expedition is fast coming to an end. By this stage of your journey, youll have made friends with your fellow explorers, finding that you have much in common in terms of your interests and passion for nature.

You can spend time chatting with them over a snack at the bistro-like Fredheim, perhaps recalling the best moments of your expedition together. Enjoy drinks at the Explorer Bar while swapping friendly banter and stories of past adventures. You might even catch a couple of the crew and Expedition Team here too.

If youd rather spend this last day at sea in quiet contemplation, youll likely have multiple memory cards full of Northern Lights photos and more to sift through and reminisce about. Take stock of everything youve seen and experienced with a blood-pumping session in the gym and then relax in the soothing steam of the sauna one last time.


DAY 22 DOVER, UK Back to Blighty

Estimated time of arrival is 09:00

We pass the white cliffs of Dover during the early morning hours and dock at the citys harbour. After a final breakfast, itll be time to say a fond farewell to the ship, the Captain, crew, Expedition Team, and your new-found friends.

As you head ashore, youll take with you special memories of Norway in winter: wonderful fjords, fascinating towns and cities, friendly people, and the magical Northern Lights. Dover acts as the gateway to English countryside, the verdant counties of Kent and Surrey, and beyond to the melting pot of London. But before you rush off, you might to like to visit Dover Castle, tipped to be the largest in England.

There is a rare Roman lighthouse here, one of only three in the world and reputedly the UKs oldest building. You can also go on a tour of the underground hospital and secret WWII tunnels that run beneath the castle complex.

Whatevers next for you, we wish you a safe onward journey and look forward to seeing you on your next adventure!

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