Path of the Vikings: Reykjavik to Quebec
Based on the expeditionary nature of our trips, there may be ongoing enhancements to this itinerary.
Below please find the day-by-day itinerary for this expedition. Unless otherwise noted, daily excursion options are included in the cost of the trip. We do our best to adhere to the scheduled itinerary, but in the spirit of our expeditionary style of travel, we may deviate slightly to take full advantage of encounters with the destination and its people, culture, and wildlife.
Rates for the Ultimate Iceland extension are $8,980 per person, double occupancy; $10,980 per person, single occupancy.
Depart USAAugust 27
Board your independent flight to Iceland.
Reykjavík, IcelandAugust 28
Arrive in the Icelandic capital this morning and transfer to the Reykjavík Hilton Nordica. Lunch and the remainder of the day are at leisure to enjoy this fascinating and colorful city. Gather this evening for a welcome reception followed by dinner and overnight at our hotel.
Reykjavík / Embark Le ChamplainAugust 29
After breakfast, set out to explore Iceland’s classic scenic wonders known as the Golden Circle. Begin with Thingvellir National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site surrounded by mountains and encompassing a vast lava plain of green moss and wildflowers. Continue to Gullfoss Waterfall where the Hvita River drops 96 feet in two voluminous cascades. The Geysir Center is a huge geothermal field of both boiling and tranquil multi-hued hot springs and bubbling mud pools. After lunch, visit Fridheimar Farm, which produces tomatoes and cucumbers year-round in their impressive greenhouses and breeds Icelandic horses, then embark Le Champlain.
Vigur Island / ÍsafjördurAugust 30
After breakfast take a walking tour of small, verdant Vigur, the summer home to vast numbers of puffins, black guillemots, Arctic terns, and eiders. The tiny community dates back to the late 1800s and boasts Iceland’s only windmill. During lunch on board, cruise northward to Ísafjördur, the trading and cultural center of the West Fjords. A cultural tour reveals the history and daily life of one of Iceland’s oldest fishing settlements and visits the region’s scenic highlights. This afternoon, enjoy free time in town to browse the local shops.
At SeaAugust 31
Attend lectures on the natural and historical highlights ahead.
Expedition Stop, GreenlandSeptember 1
Today, cruise along the southeastern coast of Greenland. Now uninhabited, the region recalls its past civilization in skeletal sites of old Scandinavian and Inuit camps and settlements. Watch for seals, whales, and polar bears and, conditions permitting, go ashore via Zodiac for nature hikes to explore this remote wilderness.
Prins Christian SundSeptember 2
The 55-mile-long channel near the southern tip of Greenland offers breathtaking vistas as you cruise among a flotilla of ice. Mountains rise from the barren landscape, and icebergs, like tiny atolls, sit in pools of aquamarine waters. Steep, glacier-cut cliffs border the fjord; frozen waterfalls cling to their edges like freeze-framed photographs. By Zodiac and aboard the ship, cruise the bays and finger-like offshoots of this truly
spectacular display of geology and geography.
Brattahlid / NarsaqSeptember 3
This morning, visit Brattahlid, the historic Norse site named after Eric the Red’s wife, who built the first Christian church in the New World. In the afternoon, step ashore in Narsaq, built on a beautiful plain on the Narsaq Peninsula, and surrounded by waters rich with seals, salmon, and Arctic char. Explore the small town with its brightly painted houses, museum, and local handicrafts market; and visit the remains of an old Norse settlement.
At SeaSeptember 4 — September 5
Spend your time at sea attending informative lectures, searching for wildlife from deck with naturalists, and enjoying the amenities of Le Champlain.
L’Anse aux Meadows, Newfoundland, CanadaSeptember 6
Considered by some to be the long-sought-after Vinland depicted in the Norse sagas and settled by Leif Ericson in A.D. 1000, L’Anse aux Meadows was only officially rediscovered in 1961. Declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1978, it remains the only authenticated Viking settlement in North America and represents the earliest evidence of a European presence in the New World. Visit the living history Viking trading settlement of Norstead.
Gros Morne National ParkSeptember 7
In Gros Morne take a hike to the Tablelands, a landform that resembles the surface of the moon. Much of Gros Morne’s fame comes from this huge extrusion of the earth’s mantle thrust violently to the surface over 450 million years ago. The park is also rich in wildlife—caribou, Arctic hare, fox, weasel, lynx, and an occasional black bear. Alert spotters may observe fin, minke, humpback, and pilot whales in the offshore waters.
Gaspe, QuebecSeptember 8
Be on deck as the ship approaches Gaspe to view stunning Percé Rock, an imposing limestone sea stack with a large arch “piercing” the rock. On nearby Bonaventure Island, step ashore for nature walks to observe interesting geology and over 300 species of birds, including black-legged kittiwakes, common murres, and a large colony of northern gannets.
Havre St. PierreSeptember 9
Havre St. Pierre is the gateway to the spectacular Mingan Archipelago, a chain of islands, islets, and monoliths of element-sculpted limestone. Whales and seals are often spotted frolicking among these bizarre formations, and seabirds nest along the sheer rock cliffs.
Cruising the St. Lawrence RiverSeptember 10
Enjoy the passing coastal scenery, spend time sorting through your photos, and attend lectures recapping your experiences.
The Fjord du Saguenay offers some of Canada’s most breathtaking scenery. As the ship cruises along this narrow waterway, you are surrounded by cliffs that tower from 500 – 1,000 feet. Keep an eye out for resident wildlife, including peregrine falcons, black bears, seals, and beluga whales.
Quebec City / Disembark / USASeptember 12
Transfer to the airport for your independent flights homeward.