The St. Lawrence River in the Heart of the Boreal Winter

Saint Pierre Island - Québec

Canada
January - February
12 Nights

Choose Your Departure Date

The-St.-Lawrence-River-in-the-Heart-of-the-Boreal-Winter
No Single Supplement
Québec - Saint Pierre Island
29/01/2025 to the 10/02/2025
12 Nights

Price from per person

£17,590
The-St.-Lawrence-River-in-the-Heart-of-the-Boreal-Winter
No Single Supplement
Saint Pierre Island - Québec
10/02/2025 to the 22/02/2025
12 Nights

Price from per person

£17,590
The-St.-Lawrence-River-in-the-Heart-of-the-Boreal-Winter
No Single Supplement
Québec - Saint Pierre Island
29/01/2025 to the 10/02/2025
12 Nights

Price from per person

£17,590
The-St.-Lawrence-River-in-the-Heart-of-the-Boreal-Winter
No Single Supplement
Saint Pierre Island - Québec
17/01/2025 to the 29/01/2025
12 Nights

Price from per person

£17,590

Cruise Overview

A new opportunity to explore the winter landscapes of the Saint Lawrence River in unparalleled comfort. Inaccessible to traditional ships during winter, this exclusive icebreaker expedition unveils vast open spaces where once-turbulent waters freeze into ice and pristine forests adorned in immaculate white.

Navigate through various states and forms of ice, from drifting and fragmented sea ice to solid expanses, while admiring the evolving natural spectacle from the secure embrace of Le Commandant Charcot. Whether aboard the ship or ashore, seize the chance to explore places where nature reigns supreme in ever-changing forms: boreal forests adorned with pristine conifers, snow-covered valleys, and a sea of ice. Embark on discovering this enchanting environment through winter activities such as hiking, snowshoeing, dog sledding, or ice fishing. With luck, witness typical wildlife like caribou and elk in their natural habitat.

In this region, where deep serenity fills the souls, resilient, colourful houses and fishing huts stand against the harshness of winter. Indigenous communities, representing some of the First Nations, share their stories, legends, and ancestral traditions.

The St. Lawrence River in the Heart of the Boreal Winter map 1

Cruise Highlights

Cruise Highlights

  • Embark on an immersive journey through the heart of winter nature as you traverse the St. Lawrence River, a unique experience exclusively available on board Le Commandant Charcot, and bask in the warm hospitality extended by the people of Canada.
  • Benefit from the insight and guidance of our photo ambassador, providing a unique chance to capture your journey through workshops, conferences, and personalised advice to enhance your photographic skills.
  • Engage in outings and shore visits led by a team of naturalist guides.
  • Explore traditional villages and connect with indigenous Innu and Micmac communities.
  • Witness the mesmerising display of the Northern Lights painting the sky with unique colours.
  • Participate in winter-themed activities*, including kayaking, ice fishing, raw rockfish tastings, dog sledding, samplings of local produce, and optional experiences like ice climbing, ice canoeing, and skijoring.
  • In Quebec, immerse yourself in the world's largest winter carnival, where enchanting ice decorations, sculptures, and lights create a magical spectacle.
  • Experience the warmth of Quebecois hospitality and friendliness. Indulge in unforgettable overnight stays, allowing ample time to contemplate the breathtaking spectacle.
  • Discover diverse landscapes: vast open spaces, fjords, pristine boreal forests, sea ice, and snow-covered valleys.

Itinerary

Itinerary

Explore The Frozen Saint Lawrence River by Luxury Icebreaker

Saint Pierre Island
Day 1

Saint Pierre Island, Saint Pierre And Miquelon

Off the shores of Canada, explore Saint Pierre Island, one of the two principal islands in the Saint Pierre and Miquelon archipelago, the sole French territory in North America. With a natural harbour, the island, named after the patron saint of fishermen, flourished around the fishing industry, and echoes of its maritime past still endure. Tales of whale hunting, cod fishing, and alcohol smuggling during Prohibition resonate in the capital, Saint-Pierre. The island is a haven for observing remarkable wildlife, featuring whales, fin whales, dolphins, seals, puffins, and petrels among its diverse fauna.

Embarkation from 16:00 to 17:00

Departure 17/01/2025 at 18:00

Day 2

Sydney

Established in 1785, Sydney is on Cape Breton Island in Nova Scotia. The steel industry significantly influenced the city's character, as it housed the world's largest steel plants in the early 20th century. During the Second World War, Sydney played a crucial role in the Allied war effort by serving as a base for supply convoys heading to Great Britain. Today, tourism has taken precedence over mining, and the Sydney Mines Heritage Museum & Fossil Centre offers an intriguing visit. Enthusiasts of the outdoors will appreciate hiking along the lighthouse coastal trail, immersing themselves in the wild landscapes of Cape Breton while enjoying breathtaking views of the ocean.

Cape Aux Meules
Days 3-4

Cap-Aux-Meules, Magdalen Islands

While serving as the administrative and economic hub of the Magdalen Islands archipelago in the Gulf of Saint Lawrence, the village of Cap-aux-Meules maintains a serene atmosphere, making it an ideal destination for exploring pristine nature. Situated on the island of the same name, derived from the sandstone rocks of the cape historically used for grindstones, this location is primarily recognized as the maritime gateway to the archipelago. Consequently, it provides exclusive access to numerous sites celebrated for their natural and historical significance, including Havre-Aubert, acknowledged as one of the Most Beautiful Villages in Quebec.

Gaspe PONANT
Day 5

Gaspé

In the serene embrace of the Canadian winter, Gaspé proudly stands as a preserved and authentic gem along the edge of the dark waters of the Gulf of Saint Lawrence. Nature appears to hold its breath in the glacial darkness. The majestic Mount Jacques-Cartier, the highest peak of the Chic-Choc Mountains range, adorns itself in a pristine blanket of snow while the frozen rivers wind through the landscape, capturing time in their icy embrace.

Immerse yourself in the captivating landscapes of the L'Anse-au-Griffon Valley during a snowshoe walk in the heart of Forillon National Park. Later, in Percé, facing the renowned eponymous Rock, explore the natural beauty of the "magic forest," where thousands of conifers, adorned in an immaculate white cloak, stand as silent guardians over this isolated piece of land. Discover the charm of this delightful town, where captivating history and the warmth of the locals blend in a harmonious union.

Sept Iles PONANT
Days 6-7

Sept-Îles

On the fringes of the Canadian panorama, amid the icy waters of the Gulf of Saint Lawrence, Sept-Îles beckons you to embark on a distinctive journey. Enveloped by a mesmerising sea of ice and an untarnished boreal forest, the seven islands, timeless sentinels of the coastline, appear to whisper ageless tales. An exceptional opportunity awaits you to encounter the Innu people, the indigenous civilization of the Côte-Nord, offering insights into their ancestral customs and traditions.

Renowned for its winter celebrations, akin to the emblematic Hivernants (hunters and trappers who spent the winter), succumb to the allure of its singular environment. Engage in Nordic hikes on skis or snowshoes, revelling in the enchanting landscapes that captivate the senses.

SAGUENAY RIVER ponant
Day 8

Sailing The Saguenay River

Cruising along the Saguenay River in the heart of Quebec promises breathtaking vistas. Originating in the Laurentian Highlands of Lac-Saint-Jean and merging with the renowned Saint-Laurent River, this waterway presents unforgettable landscapes to those who traverse its course. Winding between cliffs towering over 500 meters tall (1,640 feet), sculpted during the last ice age, the lower section of the Saguenay creates a fjord of awe-inspiring beauty that will surely captivate you.

LA BAIE PONANT
Day 9

La Baie (Saguenay)

Throughout the extended winter season, the borough of La Baie in the majestic Saguenay Valley is enveloped in intrigue. The captivating contrasts of its unspoiled landscapes, where nature reveals its full magnificence, beckons you to partake in a singular experience alongside the Saguenayens, known for their warmth and hospitality. Whether on a snowshoe trek or a dog sledge adventure, as a passenger or a musher, seize the opportunity to witness pristine nature framed by a thick ice floe, where Le Commandant Charcot will linger for several days, providing the chance for disembarkation. Hundreds of vibrant huts dot these frozen waters each winter for traditional ice fishing practices. Immerse yourself in these age-old techniques and savour the delights of freshly caught rockfish.

Quebec PONANT
Days 12-13

Quebec

The capital of "La Belle Province" stands at the confluence of the St Charles River and the Gulf of St Lawrence in southeast Canada. Established in the 17th century, the city is still surrounded by a protective wall, a historic engineering marvel, and the only one of its kind in North America. The picturesque stone houses of Old Quebec, a UNESCO World Heritage site, add to the city's charm. Enjoy leisurely shopping on pedestrian streets like Petit-Champlain Street or unwind with a spruce beer infused with pine buds. The Dufferin Boardwalk, situated near the iconic Château Frontenac, is an ideal spot for stunning views of the river and the old city.

Arrival 28/01/2025

Disembarkation 29/01/2025 At 08:00

Activities

Activities

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.

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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© 2024 The Expedition Collective

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