Posts tagged with "northern lights"

Wild Women Expeditions

Departures for this brand-new Wild Women Expeditions’ foray into the land of ice and snow are Feb. 23-March 2 and March 9-16, 2019. These dates coincide with prime viewing conditions for the Aurora Borealis. The per person rate of $5,495 includes local female guides, seven nights shared accommodation (a private upgrade is $425) in guest houses and mountain huts, meals, activities-related gear and equipment including snowshoes and poles, ground transportation and drop-off at airport in Reykjavik and all local taxes. See: Website

This time of year the light from a low-lying sun sheds a warm glow for a short eight hours, time enough to strap on snow shoes to stride (hikes average 10km) through volcanic valleys where steaming mud pots, hot rivers and frozen waterfalls await. Over on a glacier, crampon-clad women will explore an ice cave and tunnels with an accomplished glacier guide. One mountain region along the sea displays a multitude of bird species nesting on treacherous cliffs, beaches of sand and pebbles popular among horsemen and rock skimmers, and remnants and relics scattered here and there of times and ways of life long past. Iceland’s unique geology and cultural history come into focus when visiting Thingvellir National Park, home of the country’s seat of power from the 10th to 18th centuries.

Guests meet up in Reykjavik where a walking tour and thermal soak demonstrate how Icelanders enjoy themselves. The itinerary offers daily opportunities to soak in water warmed from the belly of the earth. While lodging in mountain huts, guests help prepare Icelandic meals. But there’s no lingering at the dinner table here, as throughout the day anticipation mounts for the spectacle du jour, the Northern Lights, witnessed in off-the-beaten-track locales where otherwise dark skies preside.

The sojourn calls for people-to-people meet-ups too. At Ullarselið, a center for displaying and selling, staff will show the group the importance that wool plays in this cold clime. In 1994, 50 women from nearby villages worked for 18 days (432 hours) to make the biggest sweater in the world! It is knitted with hand-spun wool; 179 pieces are sewn together with black thread. The sweater has been recognized by the Guinness Book of World Records. (Icelandic sheep, breeding here over 1,000 years, yield white and shades of gray, brown and black wool. The prolific breed carries a gene that can produce sextuplets.)

On a western peninsula where fishing and tourism rule the economy, guests spend time with two female entrepreneurs who set up a slow travel company in the town of Stykkisholmur. They will share first-hand insights into the way of life – yesterday and today, including how and why Icelanders are said to be some of the most well-read people on the planet.

For details, availability and reservations for trips in Iceland as well as all Wild Women Expeditions’ programs call 1 (888) 993-1222, email info@wildwomenexpeditions.com or visit online at Website .

About

Founded in 1991, Wild Women Expeditions is the world’s largest women-only travel company. Its initial focus was on canoeing on remote Ontario waters. Through an unwavering focus on Canada, one of the wildest, most pristine countries in the world, Wild Women Expeditions became Canadian experts in a pioneering niche that introduced small groups of women into wilderness settings. Even though the company now hosts guests all over the world, it retains a national focus with more trips and more women-only, back country camping adventures in Canada than any other women’s travel company in the world.

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Poseidon Expeditions

Poseidon Expeditions for 2019-2020 Adds

New Cruises off Scotland’s Coast,

More Arctic and Antarctic Departures

Book by Nov. 1, 2018, Receive Discounts of up to 15 Percent on Most Itineraries

Poseidon Expeditions, the go-to company for Arctic and Antarctic cruises, has a jump on the 2019 and 2020 seasons with new destinations, additional departures of favorite journeys and if booked by Nov. 1, 2018, discounts of up to 15 percent on most itineraries.

The company maintains two vessels, the 114-guest Sea Spirit, recently fully refurbished, and the 128-guest 50 Years of Victory, purpose-built as an ice breaker for expedition cruising. Both are in northern climes in the North American summer; Sea Spirit moves south in the winter for explorations of the Southern Ocean and Antarctica.

New 2019 Sea Spirit Itineraries

A brand-new itinerary launching for 12 days June 3-14, 2019, is From Scotland Highlands to Arctic Glaciers.  Guests depart on Sea Spirit from Leith (Edinburgh), Scotland, and cruise to Norway’s Longyearbyen (Spitsbergen), tracking routes of Vikings who invaded Scotland’s (among other) coastlines in search of arable land – and gold. Guests visit:

• Skara Brae, a 5,000-year-old village and UNESCO World Heritage Site in the Orkney Islands

• a birder’s paradise (over 345 species recorded) on Fair Isle (think sweaters) in the Shetland Islands

• Denmark’s Faroe Islands (think salmon) that National Geographic Traveler has designated as “Authentic, unspoiled and likely to remain so”

• Norway’s stunning and wild Jan Mayen

• and the High Arctic wilderness of Svalbard, with ghosts of whaling camps and trappers’ cabins and very present polar bears, reindeer, walrus, whale and more, all frisky in Nature’s 24-hour days.

The per person double rate is from $5,396 in a Main Deck Suite, after the discount.

A second brand-new Sea Spirit itinerary, a 12-day May 21-June 3, 2019, Best of the British Isles cruise (web link and more details to come), is also a new direction for Poseidon Expeditions because this adventure has nothing to do with either the Arctic or Antarctica. This trip begins in Plymouth, UK, and proceeds along the magical Scottish coast among legendary islands of both Scotland and Ireland, ending in Leith (Edinburgh), Scotland. Many stops will introduce designated birding – including puffin — habitats. Like all of its journeys, an expedition team that specializes in exploration of the natural world will be aboard to curate the adventure for guests. Also figuring into this journey:

• the high cliffs of Scotland’s St. Kilda (think sea bird eggs harvested for human fodder)

• the basalt columns of Ireland’s Giant’s Causeway

• castles and monasteries (including Iona Abbey)

• Waterford (crystal)

• Snowdonia National Park and a 13th century castle in Wales

• Shetland ponies

• a Highland distillery

The per person double rate is from $5,795.

Expanded Sea Spirit Departures in 2019

Poseidon Expeditions has added a second departure of East Greenland

Under the Dome of Northern Lights. This 11-day trip departures in 2019 Sept. 6-16 and Sept. 15-25. This cruise – round trip from Reykjavik – has sold out for four consecutive seasons.  The per person double rate inclusive of an early booking discount is from $7,556.

There will also be two departures of the unique Franz Josef Land Archipelago – Russian High Arctic cruise, a 14-day program exploring the Russian High Arctic that is not available through any other expedition ship operator. Departures in 2019 are Aug. 1-14 and Aug. 13-26. The per person double rate inclusive of an early booking discount is from $12,056.

Sea Spirit in Antarctica 2019-2020

For the 2019-20 Antarctic season, Poseidon Expeditions again offers a variety of classic Antarctic Peninsula programs as well as three longer Antarctica, South Georgia and the Falkland Islands voyages, all utilizing Sea Spirit. The season begins with the 23-day Falklands, South Georgia & Antarctic Islands“Antarctica Awakening” program Oct. 20-Nov.11, 2019, embarking in Montevideo, Uruguay, and ending in Ushuaia, Argentina. The final voyage of the season, also 23 days, includes the same Southern Ocean destinations, February 25-March 18, 20 embarking in Ushuaia and disembarking in Montevideo. Please see: https://poseidonexpeditions.com/antarctica/ for itinerary and information on early booking offers.

Sea Spirit guests enjoy the freshness of a brand-new $1 million refurbishment of all 55 guest suites (square footages up to 463) and public areas. There are two multi-purpose lounges for educational programming and entertainment, a restaurant that can accommodate all passengers in one seating, a well-stocked library, and ample outdoor deck space to enjoy the polar landscapes and wildlife. Activities directed by a team of experienced polar guides and educators include Zodiac excursions, hiking and optional kayaking and camping, along with informative presentations aboard. The ship’s expedition staff-to-passenger ratio of 1:9 is one of the best in the business.

50 Years of Victory and 2019 at the North Pole

Poseidon Expeditions will offer three prime season departures in 2019 – July 7, July 18 and July 29 – of its signature Expedition to the Top of the World, a 13-day voyage to the North Pole aboard the nuclear-powered 50 Years of Victory. The gateway is Murmansk, Russia. The voyage north includes sightseeing helicopter flights across a frozen land and seascape. After celebrations at the North Pole, on the south-bound voyage Poseidon Expeditions brings passengers through Franz Josef Land, an archipelago of 191 uninhabited, volcanic, mostly glaciated islands (part of the Russian Arctic National Park). The per person double rate inclusive of an early booking discount is from $28,495.

Powered by two nuclear reactors generating 75,000 horsepower and capable of crushing a clear path through multi-year ice up to three meters (10 feet) thick, 50 Years of Victory is the largest and most powerful icebreaker ever built. This 525-foot working vessel offers comfortable accommodations, all with exterior views and en suite facilities; a dining room; aft salon for lectures, presentations and socializing; a bow-facing bar and lounge; library; a gym, two saunas and swimming pool with heated seawater. The ship is equipped with a modern clinic and physician.

For inquires and reservations in North America, or to request a catalog, agents can contact the company’s Providence, RI, sales and reservation office at SalesUSA@poseidonexpeditions.com or by telephone at 347-801-2610.

In Germany, Austria and Switzerland, contact Poseidon’s Hamburg office – Anfrage@poseidonexpeditions.com or telephone +49-40-7566-8555. In the UK and elsewhere on the globe, contact Sales@poseidonexpeditions.com or telephone +44-870-068-9142.

About Poseidon Expeditions

With offices in the US, UK, Germany, Russia and China, Poseidon Expeditions is a leading provider of polar expeditions in the cruise industry. The company is committed to safe and environmentally responsible polar travel. It is a member of the International Association of Antarctica Tour Operators (IAATO) and the Association of Arctic Expedition Cruise Operators (AECO)