Terra Incognita: The Northeast Passage

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28 Days


Terra Incognita: The Northeast Passage - 28 - $19,800

Trip Summary and Itinerary Map

  • An epic 28 day Arctic voyage through ‘terra incognita’
  • Begins in Svalbard and finishes in Anadyr, Russia or vv
  • Travelling on a former Russian research vessel with only 48 people
  • Additional local fees of $500 per person, in addition to voyage price
  • A private charter flight from Anadyr to Nome is available at $1,300 pp

Start from Longyearbyen and end at Anadyr

Landmarks visited on Terra Incognita: The Northeast Passage

Operator's Itinerary

Day 1: Longyearbyen, Svalbard

Join the Akademik Shokalskiy in the Port of Longyearbyen this afternoon and depart. After sailing there will be introductions to ship and crew.

Days 2-3: Barents Sea

This sea is named in honour of Dutch Seafarer and navigator Willem Barents who explored the region on two separate expeditions in 1594 and 1596. Keep a look out for marine mammals and of course seabirds.

Days 4-6: Franz Josef Land

This is a huge archipelago of 192 islands located only 10 degrees from the North Pole. They were named in 1870 after the Hungarian Emperor when they were discovered by the Austro-Hungarian Payer-Weyprecht Expedition that was searching for the NE Passage. During your time here multiple landings are planned, in search of history, wildlife and flora.

Days 7-8: Kara Sea

The Kara Sea is one of the coldest seas in Russia. It lies between Novaya Zemlay, Franz Josef and Severnaya Zemlya Archipelago.

Days 9-11: Severnaya Zemlya Archipelago

The Severnaya Zemlya Islands are on the border of the Kara and Laptev Seas and are an extension of the Taimyr Peninsula. The islands were not discovered until 1914-15 by the Russian explorer Vilkitski. They are heavily glaciated with deep fjords and majestic glaciers which make them magnificent for cruising. There is also a great selection and abundance of Arctic wildlife including Polar Bears, Arctic Foxes, Arctic Hares and walruses.

Days 12-13: Crossing the Laptev Sea

This sea is bounded in the west by the Taymyr and the Severnaya Islands and the Novosibirskie Islands in the east. Look out for the Laptev Sea Walrus known only in this sea.

Days 14-16: Noviye Sebirskiye (New Siberian Islands)

These islands mark the border between the Laptev and East Siberian Seas and consist of three major groups: Southern, Central (Anzhu) and Northern (De Long) Group. The islands are virtually unexplored and are uninhabited apart from the researchers at a couple of weather stations. Explore the islands with a number of landings in search of Arctic flora and wildlife.

Day 17: East Siberian Sea

It was in this sea that the Jeannette, captained by George Washington De Long, became stuck fast in ice, drifted and was crushed and sunk in 1881. Wreckage from the Jeanette was found in Greenland in 1884 giving Nansen the idea for the now famous 1893-96 Fram Expedition.

Day 18: Medvezhyi Islands

There are no permanent settlements on these little known and seldom visited islands. They are covered in tundra and known to have a good population of Polar Bears.

Day 19: Ayon Island and Village

This island and village is home to a small group of Chukchi Reindeer herders. Enjoy their hospitality and learn about reindeer herding.

Day 20: East Siberian Sea

This sea occupies the area between the Novosibirskie Islands and Wrangel Island. Three of Siberia's major rivers flow into it - the Indigirka, Alazaya and the Kolyma. It was in this sea that the Soviet vessel Chelyuskin with 111 people on board became trapped in ice and sank in 1934.

Days 21-23: Wrangel Island

Wrangel Island is one of those islands that you have to visit to appreciate. It is a Federal Nature Reserve of international significance and importance and also a World Heritage Site. A lot of its significance lies in the fact that it is a major Polar Bear denning area. It is also the last landfall for migratory species flying north. Each summer thousands of birds migrate here to breed, including Snow Geese, Snowy Owls, skuas, Arctic Terns, Ross's, Sabine's and Ivory Gulls.

Day 24: Kolyuchin Island

Early this morning, pass close by the place where the Swedish explorer Adolf Erik Nordenskiold wintered over in 1878. Later this morning, the plan is to land on Kolyuchin Island, where there is an abandoned Polar research and weather station and some great bird cliffs.

Day 25: Cape Dezhnev and Uelen Village

Early this morning you will be at Cape Dezhnev, the eastern extremity of the Eurasian continent. This afternoon, visit the nearby village of Uelen. Here, enjoy the hospitality of the local people who are predominantly Chukchi and enjoy a cultural performance and visit the bone-carving studio.

Day 26: Whale Bone Alley and Gil'mimyl Hot Springs

Visit Whale Bone Alley on Yttygran Island, one of the most significant and intriguing archaeological sites in the Arctic. This afternoon, a planned landing at the Gil'mimyl Hot Springs.

Day 27: At Sea

Crossing the Gulf of Anadyr there will be opportunities for pelagic birding, marine mammal watching and lectures.

Day 28: At Sea

The expedition finishes in Anadyr. After a final breakfast it will be time to disembark. There will be a complimentary transfer to the airport or to a central downtown hotel.

NOTE: This itinerary is for guidance only as each voyage will vary depending on ice and weather conditions, and opportunities to see wildlife. Flexibility is key and all part of the adventure of an expeditionary cruise.

About The Ship

  • One of our smallest ships with only 54 guests
  • A former Russian research vessel
  • Only zodiac landings & excursions
  • RMRS UL ice class rating
  • Rubber boots are provided on loan
Loli Figueroa

This plucky little ship has an outstanding record of safely navigating The Arctic's most remote corners

Loli Figueroa 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.

This trip can run as a group trip, with prices starting from $19,800 per person for a complete group. If you are looking to join a group or you are a solo traveller we will help to form likeminded groups of travellers. Please let us know your travel plans.

The trip can also run on a private basis to fit around your plans. Departures may be tailored and can be set up on a date of your choice. Please note that there is a higher price for smaller groups. Please enquire for further details.

Additional Notes

The charter flights from Anadyr to Nome costs an additional $1300 per person on top of the voyage price. In addition to this, a local payment of $500 is required.

Single Supplement & Child Policy

For those travelling solo and want their own cabin, the single supplement in a twin cabin is 1.7 times the cost of a single berth. However, there is no single supplement for passengers willing to share a cabin.


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


  • Flights to & from points of embarkation/disembarkation
  • Any additional services before & after your voyage
  • Transfers not specific to the itinerary
  • Travel insurance
  • Optional adventure activities
  • 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?