Inuit spring at the edge of Scoresby Sound

Reykjavík, Iceland - Reykjavík

Iceland, East Greenland
May
12 Nights

Choose Your Departure Date

ITTOQQORTOORMIIT INUIT PONANT
No Single Supplement
Reykjavík, Iceland - Reykjavík
16/05/2024 to the 28/05/2024
12 Nights

Price from per person

£16,040

Cruise Overview

Join an Explorers Club special and embark on an enchanting exploration aboard luxury icebreaker Le Commandant Charcot. Explore the untamed East coast of Greenland, an exceptionally isolated region. As the long winter night gives way to spring under the gaze of the midnight sun, the coast is locked by sea ice. Aboard the Le Commandant Charcot, we can navigate through the havey sea ice and encounter this previously unexplored area. 

 

This expedition explores the enchanting Blosseville Coast and the captivating region of Ittoqqortoormiit, at the entrance to Scoresby Sound, the world's largest network of fjords. At the fjord's entrance, the northernmost village on the East coast of Greenland enhances the snow-covered tableau with its vibrant houses. Here, the Inuit harmonise with the changing seasons and ice rhythm, preserving their traditions, including dog sledge hunting. As among the season's first visitors, the community welcomes you warmly.

Witness the constantly evolving spectacle of different states and forms of ice, all while admiring the majestic wildlife, including eiders in flight, the grandeur of a blue whale, and the impressive silhouette of the great Nanuk – the polar bear.

Inuit spring at the edge of Scoresby Sound Map

Cruise Highlights

Cruise Highlights

  • Benefit from the eye and advice of our photo ambassador Cindy Miller Hopkins, offering workshops, conferences, and personalised guidance to enhance your photographic skills, ensuring an immortalised trip.
  • Discover the Ittoqqortoormiit region, one of the most isolated settlements on Earth and home to the final hunters of the polar region, situated at the gateway to Scoresby Sound, the planet's most extensive network of fjords.
  • Meet the Inuit people at winter's end, sharing unique moments on the ice floe, discovering their spring traditions, and enjoying a captivating dog sledge outing.
  • Follow the trail of great explorers attempting to navigate the once-isolated eastern coast of Greenland, a region accessible only at this time of year, thanks to Le Commandant Charcot.
  • Engage in the heart of Inuit culture with a thoughtfully designed dog sledging experience.
  • Encounter a rich array of wildlife, including blue whales, humpback whales, polar bears, seals, and sea birds.
  • Engage in various brand-new activities such as dog sledging, kayaking, hiking or snowshoeing, ice fishing, and polar diving, ensuring a diverse and immersive experience.

Itinerary

Itinerary

Embark on a unique adventure to discover the ice-locked coast of East Greenland in the spring.

Reykjavik in Iceland in the winter
Day 1

ReyjavÍk

Nestled on the edge of an expansive bay in the western part of the country, Iceland's capital unfolds its charms. The "Pearl of Reykjavík," Perlan, stands as a museum situated atop 'Oskjuhlið hill, providing a sweeping vista of the verdant landscapes below. Not far away, a signpost guides you to the iconic Hallgrímskirkja church and the historic centre, inviting leisurely strolls along the vibrant Skólavördustígur and Laugavegur streets, adorned with charming boutiques. For a tranquil retreat just beyond the city, visitors can explore the Reykjanes peninsula and indulge in the renowned thermal lagoons of the Blue Lagoon.

Embarkation from 20:00 to 21:00

Departure at 22:00

CHARCOT in the Denmark Strait PONANT
Day 2

Sailing Through The Denmark Strait

Situated between Greenland and Iceland, the Denmark Strait holds historical significance as the Vikings first traversed it in the late 10th century during Erik the Red's expeditions. The waters of the strait were also a battleground during the Second World War, witnessing a clash between the Kriegsmarine and the Royal Navy on May 24, 1941. In winter, the Greenlandic coasts are enveloped by extremely dense pack ice, while the Transpolar Drift continues to transport icebergs throughout the year. However, during the summer, the strait generally remains clear of ice.

EXPLORATION OF AMMASSALIK REGION PONANT
Day 3

Exploring The Ammassalik Region

A mere century ago, the east coast of Greenland stood in relative obscurity, and to this day, it remains the most genuine and awe-inspiring region in the Arctic. Venture into a world where alpine mountains seamlessly merge with the sea, and fjords showcase towering, snow-capped peaks while icebergs gracefully drift or become trapped in the pack ice. Delve into the heart of frozen landscapes adorned with surreal beauty, where the diverse textures of various ice types weave an ever-changing tapestry.

Blosseville Coast expedition in East Greenland PONANT
Day 4

Blosseville Coast

Embark on a voyage following the path of Jules Poret de Blosseville, a French explorer and sailor. In 1833, aboard La Lilloise, he embarked on a journey to unveil eastern Greenland's isolated and uncharted expanse, bestowing French names upon various coastal sites. Unfortunately, the adventure likely ended in tragedy, as the crew was never located. Now named after him, this desolate region stretches south of Scoresby Sund. Enveloped by ice, icebergs, and fragments of pack ice, Blosseville Coast is one of those rugged and challenging terrains that only a fortunate few can explore.

Le Commandent Charcot in Ittoqqortoormiit
Days 5-8

Exploration of the Ittoqqortoormiit Region

On Greenland's East coast, within the snow and ice-covered Ittoqqortoormiit region for nine months of the year, you'll encounter the rare opportunity to immerse yourself in the heart of an isolated territory and marvel at the beauty of its boundless polar expanse. The lofty alpine mountains pierce the sky, gradually revealing their dark rock edges beneath a layer of snow. Positioned at the entrance to the world's longest fjord system is the village of Ittoqqortoormiit, one of the northernmost inhabited places on the East Coast. Translating to 'great house' in Greenlandic, it serves as the home to the last hunters of the polar region, preserving their ancestral way of life.

Once the ice floe is thick, hunters embark on trails to pursue walruses, seals, narwhals, musk oxen, and polar bears, journeying via traditional dog sledges. Across these stretches of pristine snow, the only interruptions to the silence are the sounds of dogs, the creaking of a sledge returning from a run, or footsteps on the ice. You'll delve into Inuit traditions, sharing privileged and festive moments on the ice floe and within the village.

Blosseville Coast expedition in East Greenland PONANT
Days 9-11

Exploring The Blosseville Coast

Encircled by ice, icebergs, and various forms of pack ice stretching as far as the eye can discern, the Blosseville Coast is a remote and untamed expanse that grants access to very few. Delving into its depths entails a gradual immersion into the heart of a frozen and almost surreal wilderness, where the nuances in light play transformative roles in one's perception of the landscape. In the realm of polar bears, the open decks of Le Commandant Charcot promise extraordinary moments of observing Arctic wildlife through a series of unique encounters.

Whale in the Denmark Strait Ponant
Day 12

Sailing the Denmark Strait

As we set sail for the return journey to Iceland, traversing the Denmark Strait became a compelling part of our voyage. Within the depths of the strait, an extraordinary natural wonder awaits—the world's largest waterfall, an undersea cataract created by the temperature disparity between the cold waters of the Greenland Sea and the warmer waters of the Irminger Sea. This phenomenon not only captivates with its uniqueness but also contributes to the strait's rich ecosystem, providing an ideal habitat for the flourishing of various cetacean species..

Reykjavik in Iceland in the winter
Day 13

Reykjavik

On the final day of your journey, as we return to Reykjavik, explore the captivating facets of Iceland's capital that extend beyond the charms previously mentioned. Nestled along the edge of an expansive bay in the western part of the country, Reykjavik unveils its distinctive allure. The city, pulsating with life and energy, offers an array of cultural and historical gems waiting to be discovered.

Amidst the cityscape, landmarks such as Harpa Concert Hall and Sun Voyager beckon, showcasing modern architectural marvels and artistic expressions. Delve into Reykjavik's rich history by visiting the National Museum or stroll around Tjörnin, the picturesque city pond. Explore the vibrant neighbourhoods, each with its unique character, and savour the culinary delights in the local eateries.

As the day winds down, perhaps consider a relaxing soak in one of Reykjavik's geothermal pools, such as the geothermally heated Vesturbæjarlaug, to unwind and reflect on the memories created during this unforgettable journey through the wonders of Iceland.

Arrival: early morning

Disembarkation: 08:00

Activities

Activities

Dog Sledding

Dog Sledding in Greenland on an icebreaker cruise

Embark on a tradition dating back 6,000 years to our ancient past. Initially embraced by the Inuit around 1000 AD, sledge dogs became steadfast companions not only to the Inuit but also to trappers in the American Far North and intrepid explorers on their extraordinary journeys. Guided skillfully by their masters and your local guide, these dogs will lead you through enchanting landscapes on a mesmerising sleigh ride. Seizing weather and ice opportunities, you'll engage in this time-honoured mode of transportation, delving into exploring the ice floe. It's the perfect avenue to acquaint yourself with the ice sheet; all you'll hear is the gentle sound of the sledge's runners gliding over the ice, the dogs' paws on the snow, and the commands issued by the Inuit. Allow yourself to be entranced by the magic of the moment.*

*Optional activity with limited available spots. Please enquire with our Travel Experience Team at the time of booking.

Ice Fishing

Ice Fishing activity

Where else could be more fitting for the pursuit of ice fishing than the frigid Arctic regions? With the guidance of our naturalist guides, you'll seek out the ideal location to carve a hole into the ice floe or frozen lakes, attempting to catch fish using an age-old method. Seizing the opportunities presented by weather and ice conditions, you'll engage in this unique activity, equally appealing to avid game fishing enthusiasts and those with a curiosity for new discoveries.*

*Optional activity with limited available spots. Please enquire with our Travel Experience Team at the time of booking.

Kayaking

Kayaking in Greenland PONANT

Discover the art of embracing the natural elements, where you'll seize every opportunity provided by the ever-changing weather and ice conditions to navigate the crystal-clear polar waters. Under the expert guidance of licensed professionals, you'll embark on a kayaking adventure, a craft cherished by the Inuit people for over four millennia. Initially designed for hunting and fishing, the kayak now becomes your gateway to immersing yourself in the unspoiled wonders of polar regions, whether it's the White Continent or the enchanting Far North.*

*Please note that limited spots are available for this experience.

Hiking or Snowshoeing

Hiking and snowshoeing on Le Commandant Charcot

Amid our shore landings, you'll have the chance to join our seasoned naturalist guides for hiking expeditions of varying difficulty levels based on the ecological resilience of the unique biome. These excursions may range from leisurely coastal strolls to extended treks lasting several hours, taking you to breathtaking viewpoints and historic sites. You'll seize the moment, adapting your journey to the prevailing weather and ice conditions. And when our itineraries permit, donning snowshoes* will transport you into the footsteps of early explorers, unlocking the uncharted corners that have remained largely untouched by mankind.

*Kindly be aware that there are limited spaces available for snowshoeing.

Polar Plunge

Polar Plunge activity PONANT

Prepare to be captivated by the unparalleled experience of plunging into frigid waters. Weather and ice conditions permitting, you'll have unique opportunities to partake in a polar plunge while clad only in your swimwear, right in the heart of the icy realm. The intense rush of emotions and the invigorating warmth that follows will leave you with unforgettable memories, reenergizing you for the journey ahead.*

*Please keep in mind that there are limited spots available for this daring adventure.

If you are interested in participating in these adventurous activities please enquire about availability at the time of reservation. All activities are subject to availability and weather conditions.

Your Ship

Your Ship

Le Commandant Charcot

Introducing the majestic Le Commandant Charcot, the world's first luxury icebreaker. Imagine exploring the seldom visited furthest reaches of the polar regions in comfort levels never seen before on an icebreaker. Her unique icebreaking PC2 Polar Class 2 Hull allows it to explore captivating destinations locked in by sea ice from the North Pole to the frozen seas of East Greenland and Antarctica, which are off-limits to standard expedition ships. The onboard experience is second to none, with fine dining, an outdoor heated lagoon and sumptuous ensuite cabins with verandas. With a team of onboard expedition experts, Le Commandant Charcot is perfect for adventurers and connoisseurs looking to explore the unexplored in safety and style.

Ship Highlights

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The World’s first Luxury Icebreaker Built For Polar Exploration

The ice-strengthened hull and powerful engines give Le Commandant Charcot an extraordinary ability to explore places where no other cruise ship has ventured before offering out-of-this-world itineraries. Equipped with a fleet of Zodiacs for excursions and kayaks, this is the ultimate expedition ship.
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Outstanding Onboard Experience & Fine Cuisine

From bathing in the heated outdoor blue lagoon to unwinding in the relaxation area complete with detox bar, indoor pool, and seating with large windows, Le Commandant Charcot is conceived around the guest experience at every level. Enjoy the finest gourmet food at the ship’s two restaurants.
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Small Group Size​

Le Commandant Charcot takes a maximum of 245 guests with only 200 on Antarctica voyages. The ship is spacious and never feels crowded. A small group size offers our guests the best experience on the ship, during Zodiac excursions and shore landings.
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World Class Expedition Teams and Leaders

What makes expeditions on Le Commandant Charcot truly pioneering is the team’s experience behind it. From captains to expedition leaders, naturalists, guides, scientists, and special guest speakers, there is a passion and wealth of experience that is shared with you every step of the way.
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Environmentally Responsible Expeditions

From cutting-edge hybrid electric engines powered by liquid natural gas to an outdoor pool heated with recycled thermal energy generated by the ship’s engine, the ship utilizes the latest technologies to be a leader in environmentally respectful cruising.
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Luxury Accommodation

Le Commandant Charcot offers luxury never seen before on an icebreaker. The tastefully designed cabins feature balconies and ensuites. For those looking for exceptional luxury, there is a choice of suites featuring private deck areas with jacuzzis, large living spaces, and dining areas.
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Dedicated to Scientific Discovery

Equipped with science laboratories, Le Commandant Charcot offers a platform to host scientists and researchers to gain valuable insights into understanding and protecting the most remote places on Earth with their knowledge shared with guests during presentations.

Do you need help planning your expedition?

Our friendly and knowledgeable Travel Experience Team is ready to assist you.

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