By Elissa Richard
Luxury tour provider Abercrombie & Kent has announced an Arctic cruise adventure worth planning ahead for. The company will be hosting an expedition voyage aboard the 199-passenger MV Le Boreal for a 2013 foray into polar bear country. Guests will enjoy stunning views from private balconies in every cabin and a technologically-advanced stabilizing system (key for navigating the Arctic’s rough seas).
The itinerary incorporates trips to the pristine landscapes of soaring glaciers and snow-topped mountains in Norway’s Svalbard archipelago, Greenland (including stops at traditional Inuit villages), and Iceland (where you’ll view the extinct volcano of Snaefellsjokull before disembarking in Reykjavik). Apart from the star attraction—polar bears roaming the ice ridge—wildlife enthusiasts can expect encounters with walrus, musk oxen, and exotic birds like puffin and eider. Shore excursions will be lead by an expert team of naturalists, geologists, historians, marine biologists, ornithologists, and photographers, who will also present onboard lectures and provide insight into the cruise region.
Sign up for "An Arctic Cruise Adventure: Polar Bear Country" for a summer departure on July 15 (returns July 30)—prime time for exploring the flora and fauna of the region under the midnight sun—from Longyearbyen (the embarkation point in Spitsbergen, Norway) to Reykjavik, Iceland. Rates on the 15-night journey start a pricey $11,995 per person (book by March 31 to knock five percent off), and include one-night pre-cruise accommodations in Oslo, a charter flight to Longyearbyen, twice-daily shore and zodiac excursions, most beverages, and gratuities.
Photo credit: Nathalie Michel