Heart of the Canadian Arctic

Flying direct into the heart of the Northwest Passage, this short trip packs in the best of the Canadian Arctic’s history, wildlife and culture. Highlights include exciting wildlife encounters around the bountiful ice floe edge, historic Beechey Island and little visited Ellesmere Island. Optional kayaking.

10 Days

$6,795

Heart of the Canadian Arctic - 10 - $6,795

Trip Summary and Itinerary Map

  • 8 full days exploring the Canadian Arctic & Northwest Passage
  • Conveniently starts and finishes in Edmonton, Canada. Charter flights Edmonton/ Resolute return
  • Only 92 passengers aboard this very capable ship
  • Hiking, photographer in residence + kayaking (extra cost)
  • This ship loans full wet weather gear (jacket, trousers & boots)

Start from Edmonton and end at Resolute

Landmarks visited on Heart of the Canadian Arctic

Operator's Itinerary

Day 1: Edmonton

We depart Edmonton on our charter flight to Resolute, a remote outpost above the Arctic Circle. Located on the southern shores of Cornwallis Island, the town is named after the British ship HMS Resolute which was trapped in ice and abandoned here in 1850 while searching for the lost Franklin Expedition. A weather station and airstrip made it a strategic outpost during the Cold War.

On arrival, we meet our expedition team and prepare for our zodiac ride to the ship. After a welcome cocktail, we weigh anchor and depart Resolute in the early evening.


Day 2: Devon Island

A large bay on the south coast of Devon Island, Maxwell Bay offers wonderful hiking ashore and wildlife watching from the water. Muskox and caribou can be found here, as well as polar bears. Harp seals, ringed seals, bearded seals and even walrus have been spotted in the coves and inlets of the bay.


Day 3: Croker Bay

Our voyage continues east through Lancaster Sound along the southern coastline of Devon Island. Lancaster Sound, which separates Devon and Baffin Island, has been named the wildlife 'super highway' of the Arctic.

Waters from the Atlantic Ocean, Arctic Ocean, and the northern archipelago of islands meet here, combining to create a rich source of nutrients and food for an abundance of Arctic wildlife.

Croker Bay is home to a healthy population of muskox and we will look for these prehistoric looking creatures as we hike ashore. Crocker Bay features particularly dramatic scenery, with deep blue icebergs set against a backdrop of richly colored peaks.

The immense Croker Glacier descends into the steely waters and is a great location for a zodiac cruise. In the afternoon we will plan to visit the abandoned Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) outpost at Dundas Harbour which was established in 1924. The old buildings make great photography subjects in this wild and remote location.


Day 4: Coburg Island, National Wildlife Area

Nirjutiqavvik National Wildlife Area is home to almost 400,000 seabirds, including a significant number of Canada's population of thick-billed murres and Northern fulmars.

As we zodiac cruise along the bird cliffs, expect to be awestruck by the sheer number of birds in the skies above. We often encounter marine mammals when exploring these waters, including beluga whales.


Day 5: Grise Fiord

Grise Fiord is the northernmost community in Canada and one of the most isolated communities in the world. Settled in 1953 by the Canadian government as a sovereignty exercise during the Cold War, the fewer than 100 people living in Grise Fiord are mostly descended from eight Inuit families who were relocated there from Northern Quebec.

The scenery is stunning, the wildlife is abundant and we are warmly welcomed by the community. Nearby Craig Harbour is the site of an abandoned RCMP outpost, established in 1922 as the RCMP sought to patrol the north and provide services to the Inuit. We will visit and learn about the history of this site as we hike and explore the bay and hillsides of Craig Harbour.


Day 6: Sirmilik National Park

Located on the northern coast of Bylot Island and within the boundary of Sirmilik National Park, the bird cliffs of Cape Hay are home to thick-billed murres and black guillemots, along with black-legged kittiwakes.

This superb location is a prime nesting spot for several hundred thousand birds. The scenery here will take your breath away as your eyes gaze beyond the tundra, towards the soaring mountain ranges in the distance.


Day 7: Elwin Inlet

We navigate the ship into nearby Elwin Inlet, a breathtaking fjord which is well protected and great for a zodiac cruise or hike onshore. Cape Charles Yorke offers several great walking opportunities. We will keep our eyes peeled for polar bears, which are plentiful along this coastline.


Day 8: Prince Leopold Island

Having crossed Prince Regent Inlet overnight, we approach the towering bird cliffs of Prince Leopold Island in the morning. This is an important migratory bird sanctuary, home to thick-billed murres, black guillemots, northern fulmars and black-legged kittiwakes.

The sea ice around Prince Leopold Island is a great place for spotting ringed seals - and wherever we find ringed seals, we usually find polar bears. Nearby Port Leopold is where English explorer, James Clark Ross, wintered over in 1848 during the search for the missing Franklin expedition. In addition to Port Leopold's historical attraction, the shallow gravel beds along the shoreline are attractive to the beluga whales who come here to moult in the summer.


Day 9: Beechey Island

Beechey Island holds great historic importance in the story of the Northwest Passage. It is here that Sir John Franklin's ill-fated expedition spent its last 'comfortable' winter in 1845 before disappearing into the icy vastness, sparking an incredible series of search expeditions.

The mystery of what happened to Franklin was partially solved in September 2014, when a joint Parks Canada and Royal Canadian Geographic Society expedition found the HMS Erebus in the Victoria Strait.

A trip ashore at Beechey Island to visit the grave markers on a remote windswept beach is a thrilling location for history buffs. We return to the ship and this evening enjoy a special dinner attended by the Captain and the chance to reflect on the wildlife, history and dramatic scenery of this pristine Arctic wilderness.


Day 10: Resolute Bay

By morning, we are at anchor in Resolute - from where we commenced our expedition a week ago. We make our way ashore by zodiac and bid farewell to our crew. A charter flight returns us to Edmonton where our journey comes to an end.

About The Ship

  • A hardy  4* ship suitable for up to 92 guests
  • Everyone can go ashore together
  • 1A ice class rating + superior stability
  • Kayaking and photo workshops
  • Hot tub & sauna
  • Boots, jacket & trousers are provided on loan
John Newby

Built as solid as a tank, you can feel this ship’s superior stability as soon as you embark.

John Newby Polar Specialist

Prices, Departures and Inclusions

Prices quoted below are per person based on 2 people sharing. Cabin availability changes all the time so please contact us for up-to-date details and information on specific cabin availability.

Triple
Shared Twin
Private Twin
Superior
Shackleton Suite
Captain's Suite
August 2018
14-Aug-2018 $6,795* $7,795 $9,395 Full Full Full
August 2019
2-Aug-2019 $7,095 $8,095 $9,595 $10,695 $12,195 $13,895 Offer available

* Note: Prices are per person. Paid in USD ($) - figure above is based on today's exchange rate. Actual cost $6795

Additional Notes

There is a mandatory $1,995 per person charter flight package on top of the voyage cost, which covers tw pre and post voyage charter flights.

GST (Canada): All bookings on voyages that operate domestically within Canada, are subject to a compulsory 5% goods and services tax (GST). This will be itemized separately to the cruise price on the confirmation invoice.


Optional Adventure Activities

Sea Kayaking ($695 per person)


Single Supplement & Child Policy

There is no single supplement for passengers willing to share a cabin. For those who want their own cabin, the single supplement in a twin cabin is 1.5 - 2 times the cost of sharing with another passenger.

Children are welcome. 25% discount young traveller discount up to 17 years and 20% off for those aged 18 - 21. Please contact us for details.

Includes

  • Voyage aboard the vessel as indicated in the itinerary
  • Accommodation during the voyage on full board basis
  • All shore excursions and zodiac activities
  • Access to onboard photographer in residence
  • Educational lectures by expert onboard polar guides
  • Access to an onboard doctor and basic medical services
  • Loan of full outer gear: jacket, trousers & rubber boots
  • Comprehensive pre-departure information
  • Port taxes and any entry fees to historic landing sites

Excludes

  • International flights to & from Edmonton, Alberta
  • Charter flights from Edmonton to the ship (US$1995)
  • Any additional services (hotels, etc) pre/ post voyage
  • Transfers not specific to the itinerary
  • Travel insurance
  • Optional adventure activities - Kayaking
  • Any visa, passport and vaccination expenses
  • Airport arrival or departure taxes
  • Items of a personal nature: laundry, beverages, etc.
  • Customary staff gratuity at the end of the voyage
  • Additional onboard purchases (i.e. gift shop)

Questions about this Voyage?