The Arctic Circle is an enchanting and widely undiscovered area and an Arctic cruise through these icy waters endeavours to explore the bordering areas of northern Norway, Spitsbergen, Greenland and magical Iceland. This is your opportunity to literally feel on top of the world travelling deep inside the Arctic circle. Enjoy cruising to the land of the midnight sun where winter evenings bring incredible panoramic light displays and summer nights cast an enchanting blue light over the awe-inspiring land.
The best time for an Arctic cruise in June, July and August as during these months the sea ice has melted enough for ships to pass through. At this time of year you may be lucky enough to spot migrating whales and the midnight sun means you can enjoy almost endless days of sunlight.
However, if seeing the Northern Lights is high on your bucket list, you may want to choose to cruise from September as this is when they start becoming visible again.
The Arctic is an excellent cruise destination for first time cruisers looking to experience vast beauty, and wildlife such as polar bears, humpback whales and more. If you like the sound of an Arctic cruise, then why not discover the grand glaciers and abundant wildlife on an Alaska cruise or, if you prefer slightly more of a cityscape experience, why not explore the majestic scenery and fascinating cultural centres on a Norwegian Fjords cruise or a Baltic cruise?
Although many of our cruise lines will call at ports featuring Arctic excursions, Hurtigruten Cruises feature fully immersive exploration itineraries right to the heart of this fascinating area.
Leknes is one of the main places you can visit after crossing the Arctic Circle. It offers the chance to see the Vestvagoy Museum, Borg Viking Centre and the charming and traditional village of Ballstad. Another great Norway city is Alesund, renowned for its Art Deco architecture and built on five islands that are inter-linked by bridges. Set against a backdrop of pack ice and vast glaciers, this is a true explorer's paradise.
For some of the most spectacular Norwegian scenery, take a shore excursion while on an Arctic Cruise to the beautiful Lofoten Islands. Visit the Viking museum and the early Viking farm settlement where you can enjoy the many fascinating historical artefacts on display before taking in the stunning views of the open ocean.
Located in Norway, an excursion here will give you the chance to see amazing animals, native to this northern part of the world, free to roam around in vast enclosures. The reindeer, moose, brown bear and nordic wolverine are amongst those on display. Take a walk around the zoo and then warm up in the welcoming cafe with a hot frothy coffee.
For all those adrenaline junkies out there, if you are feeling the need for speed, then an excursion on a snowmobile safari should give you the fix you're looking for! You'll no doubt take huge pleasure in feeling the pristine snow rushing underneath your skis as you power through the untouched wilderness. Truly exhilarating!
For the really adventurous amongst you, take an energising ride on a dog sled either by taking the controls or simply sitting back and enjoying the views. During your journey, you'll travel through beautiful, aromatic pine forests or up the stunning Altadalen Valley, to be greeted by a well earned warming drink.
The Northernmost capital in the world, Iceland's Reykjavik offers breathtaking views of Mt. Esja, the mystical Snaefellsjokull glacier and the Atlantic Ocean. If relaxing at the Blue Lagoon's hot springs doesn't inspire you, then Iceland's best summer weather in Akureyri will. Only 100km from the Arctic Circle, choose a visit to the botanical gardens, interesting museums or hit the fabulous shops and play a round at the famous 18-hole golf course.