Northwest Passage Expedition

Canada, Arctic, Northwest Passage
August
15 Nights

Choose Your Departure Date

hiking in Greenland
Small Ship
Toronto - Calgary
Aug 25 2025 - Sep 9 2025
15 Nights

Price from per person

£15,916
polar bear in Churchill Canada
Small Ship
Calgary - Toronto
Sept 7 2025 - Sept 22 2025
15 Nights

Price from per person

£15,916

Cruise Overview

For centuries, the intricate waterways of the legendary Northwest Passage have captivated explorers and adventurers. Embark on a journey through a portion of this storied route and immerse yourself in the world that once drew the likes of Franklin, Amundsen, and Larsen. Explore the final resting places of some of these legendary explorers and experience the network of islands and channels that define Canada’s High Arctic. 

Along the way, you may meet the indigenous communities who call this remote wilderness home and spot the region’s remarkable wildlife, including arctic foxes, bowhead whales, polar bears, and the elusive narwhal.

During this voyage, we will visit isolated Inuit hamlets and settlements where traditional hunting methods, including whaling, are still practiced. 

 

Northwest Passage Map AE

Cruise Highlights

Cruise Highlights

  • Marvel at the Ilulissat Icefjord, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
  • Trek across Devon Island, the largest uninhabited island on the planet.
  • Pay your respects at Beechey Island, where explorers from John Franklin’s expedition are buried.
  • Be captivated by the stunning scenery of towering cliffs, remarkable geology, and icy bays, where you might spot Arctic wildlife such as polar bears, whales, seals, and the elusive narwhal.

Itinerary

Itinerary

Embark on an Epic Voyage To Legendary Northwest Passage

Toronto city skyline at dusk in Canda
Day 1

Arrival in Toronto

Upon arriving in Toronto, check in at our group hotel near the airport. Stop by the hospitality desk to pick up your luggage cabin tags and to speak with our ground operations team. They will provide important information about pre-embarkation procedures and the charter flight to Nuuk scheduled for tomorrow. Ensure you label your luggage tags clearly with your name and ship cabin number.

Accommodation: Westin Toronto Airport Hotel (or similar)

Nuuk capital of Greenland
Day 2

Flight to Nuuk & Embarkation

Make sure your luggage is properly tagged with your name and cabin number. Keep all valuables and personal items with you throughout the day. Your luggage will be delivered to your cabin prior to your arrival on board.

Enjoy breakfast at the hotel before boarding our charter flight to Nuuk, where the Greg Mortimer will be ready to welcome you. After boarding, take some time to get comfortable in your cabin before attending the mandatory safety briefings. This evening, you’ll have the opportunity to meet your expedition team and crew members.

Sisimiut, Greenland
Day 3

At Sea & Sisimiut

After a morning of sailing, we reach Sisimiut, Greenland’s second-largest town. Situated about 54 kilometers (33.5 miles) north of the Arctic Circle, Sisimiut offers the unique experience of the midnight sun during the summer. The town is renowned for its historic blue church, featuring a gate made of whale bone. Next to the church, the cozy museum showcases an impressive reconstruction of an Inuit turf house and exhibits detailing local history and early life in Greenland.

Sisimiut boasts a variety of hiking trails suitable for different skill levels. The easier trails take you through the town, its outskirts, and into the surrounding mountains, offering breathtaking views from spectacular vantage points.

Approximately 4,500 years ago, the Saqqaq culture migrated from Canada and settled in this area, living here for around 2,000 years before mysteriously vanishing. The Dorset culture arrived around 500 CE and remained until the 1200s, after which they were succeeded by the Thule culture. Today, most residents of Sisimiut are descendants of the Thule culture.

Day 4 

Ilulissat 

Dubbed the 'birthplace of icebergs,' this area is renowned for producing some of the planet’s most spectacular ice formations. Embark on a hike to the UNESCO World Heritage-listed Icefjord and marvel at its sheer scale. Sermeq Kujalleq, also known as Jakobshavn Glacier, is the most prolific glacier in the Northern Hemisphere, generating 20 million tonnes of ice each day. This ice flows into the Ilulissat Icefjord and Disko Bay. If conditions allow, you can enjoy a Zodiac cruise at the fjord’s mouth or kayak among the sea ice and icebergs. For a truly unique experience, consider an optional 90-minute helicopter flight over the icefjord.

Optional helicopter flight (90 mins): This excursion offers the exclusive opportunity to approach the enormous glacier up close. Departing from Ilulissat Airport, the 12-seater helicopter flies over hills, lakes, and ice fjords, landing on the mountain at Kangia, in the heart of the preserved area. Here, you can immerse yourself in the breathtaking landscape. On the return journey to Ilulissat, the flight passes over the glacier’s edge, offering stunning views of massive icebergs drifting in the fjord. The sight of some of the largest icebergs, which become stranded on an underwater moraine just outside the town, provides a magnificent finale to this excursion. Please note that a minimum of eight passengers is required for this excursion to operate.

whales by an iceberg in Greenland
Day 5

Qeqertarsuaq (Disko Island)

This captivating island shares many characteristics with Iceland rather than Greenland. While its interior is dominated by mountains and glaciers, its stunning shorelines feature black sandy beaches, unique basalt columns, hot springs, and striking lava formations. Take a Zodiac cruise in Disko Bay, where the fascinating geology is on full display. The area is also a hotspot for marine life, including humpback, fin, minke, and bowhead whales.

Baffin island best places to visit in the Arctic
Day 6

Qikiqtarjuaq, Baffin Island

Our Expedition Team experts will captivate you with insightful talks on wildlife, geology, and the legendary adventures of early explorers like Franklin and Amundsen. As we approach the coast of Baffin Island, be on the lookout for Greenland’s iconic icebergs. You might also spot whales and various seal species, including ringed and harp seals.

Houses in Pond Inlet Nunavut Northwest Passage Canadian Arctic
Days 7 - 9

Baffin Island

As we sail through inlets and fjords, you'll be surrounded by towering mountains showcasing remarkable geology. Some potential stops on our journey include Home Bay, Sillem Island, John Ford Fjord, Sam Ford Fjord, and Scott Inlet. If conditions allow, we'll go ashore at Pond Inlet, where the local community will extend a warm welcome.

Bylot Island, covered with mountains, icefields, steep cliffs, snowfields, and glaciers, provides nesting habitats for numerous thick-billed murres and black-legged kittiwakes. This island hosts a total of 74 unique Arctic bird species. Due to its rich wildlife and diverse, beautiful landscapes, a significant portion of Bylot Island was designated as part of Sirmilik National Park in 2001. Our plan includes sailing along the coastline of Bylot Island to enjoy its stunning scenery and exceptional birdlife.

Beechey Island, Canada
Days 10 - 11 

Devon Island, Lancaster Sound

Situated nearly 75° north in latitude, we are now deep within the High Arctic. This region's nutrient-rich waters sustain a vibrant array of wildlife, earning it the nickname "wildlife super highway" of the Arctic. Devon Island, the largest uninhabited island on the planet, boasts remarkable geology with its flat-topped mountains and glacial valleys that define its unique landscape. Our planned visit to Dundas Harbour offers opportunities for walks across rolling tundra and potential birdwatching. Other destinations we hope to explore include Croker Bay and Maxwell Bay. Here, we can find the remains of an old Royal Canadian Mounted Police outpost and a Hudson’s Bay Company trading post. Walruses are often spotted in these bays.

On the western edge of Devon Island lies Beechey Island, our next intended landing site. Named after Frederick William Beechey, this island is one of Canada's most significant arctic locations and is designated as a Canadian National Historic Site. The Franklin expedition of 1845–46, which sought to navigate the Northwest Passage with HMS Erebus and HMS Terror, ended tragically with three of Franklin's men buried here. Beechey Island also marks the spot where Roald Amundsen landed in 1903 during the first successful ship voyage to completely traverse the Northwest Passage from the Atlantic Ocean to the Pacific Ocean.

Days 12 - 14

Cruising

Prince Leopold Island: Located south of Lancaster Sound from Beechey Island, this historic site features towering bird cliffs where English explorer James Clark Ross overwintered in 1848 during the search for the missing Franklin expedition. It is the most important bird sanctuary in the Canadian Arctic, with around 500,000 birds nesting in summer. Ringed seals are often seen on the sea ice, and polar bears are frequently nearby. The shallow gravel beds attract beluga whales, which come to moult each summer.

Cunningham Inlet: On the north coast of Somerset Island, when conditions align, you can witness hundreds of beluga whales shedding their skin on shallow sandy banks. The local scenery is ideal for guided walks, with waterway trails leading to waterfalls and higher ground.

Prince Regent Inlet, Fort Ross: Sailing down the east coast of Somerset Island, you may spot beluga whales and narwhals feeding on arctic char in Creswell Bay. This important bird area attracts species like black-bellied plovers, king eiders, and white-rumped sandpipers. At Fort Ross, visit an abandoned Hudson’s Bay Company trading outpost from 1937. Enjoy guided tundra walks.

Bellot Strait: This deep, windy waterway is marked by strong tidal currents and steep slopes. Navigation is best during slack water times. Point Zenith, the northernmost continental point of the Americas, is located here. Due to swirling currents up to 10 knots, Bellot Strait is better transited during eastbound voyages, as an alternative route through Peel Sound is available if needed.

Coningham Bay: Situated across from Victoria Strait on Prince of Wales Island, this bay is a polar bear hotspot. Bears often feast on beluga whales trapped in the rocky shallows. Whale skeletons and healthy-looking polar bears are common sights.

King William Island: Remains of the Franklin expedition have been found at 35 locations here and on nearby Adelaide Peninsula. South of Cape Felix, in Victoria Strait, we hope to approach where the HMS Erebus and HMS Terror were abandoned in 1848.

Zodiac Cruising, Cunningham Inlet, Canada, Michael Baynes
Day 15

Cambridge Bay

In Cambridge Bay, bid farewell to the crew, expedition team, and fellow travelers before taking a Zodiac shuttle ashore. Transfer to the airport for a charter flight to Calgary, where you'll spend the night.

Accommodation: Residence Inn by Marriott Calgary Downtown / Beltline District (or similar)

Calgary skyline city in Canada
Day 16

Depart Calgary

Enjoy breakfast and continue your journey.

Activities

Activities

Zodiac Cruising

Zodiac Cruising in Antarctica on the Greg Mortimer

Join us on daily adventures with our fleet of Zodiacs, expertly piloted by polar guides who will take you to the heart of stunning natural landscapes and wildlife. Enjoy the excitement of shore landings on secluded beaches and cruises through icy waters to explore intriguing sites. Every day promises new adventures and unforgettable encounters with the wild while experiencing the comfort and thrill of our Zodiacs.

Kayaking

Greg Mortimer expedition cruise ship activity platform

Embark on a thrilling sea kayaking adventure that  takes you through breathtaking polar landscapes. All necessary equipment will be provided, so you don't have to worry about a thing. As you glide through the icy waters, you'll be surrounded by stunning vistas that are sure to leave an indelible mark on your memory. This is a seamless and exciting way to experience the wonders of the natural world.

*Please note that limited spots are available for this exclusive experience and there is an additional charge. Please enquire at time of reservation.

Your Ship

Your Ship

Greg Mortimer

Do you need help planning your expedition cruise?

Why Reserve With Us?

Join Us

Subscribe to be the first to know about new voyages, exclusive offers and insider travel tips.

North Pole Cruises – a brand by the Expedition Collective Limited

© 2024 The Expedition Collective

Ask A Question

Do you have a question for our knowledgeable Travel Experience Team? We’re all ears! Just fill out this form, and we will be in touch shortly to answer your question.

Call Us

UK | EU
USA & Canada

Your Guide To Exploring The Polar Regions

Subscribe to be the first to know about new voyages, exclusive offers and insider travel tips.