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Setting sail from Nome
Only accessible by air or sea, the remote Alaskan town of Nome sits overlooking the Bering Strait, surrounded by miles of largely featureless tundra. This was once a boomtown; the discovery of easily extractable gold in 1898 led to a gold rush, and you can still see the remnants of the mining industry which thrived here. The gold hasn't completely dried up, so many still come here to try and find their fortune, while other visitors are drawn to Nome by the varied bird life and intriguing Iñupiat culture.
United States: St Matthew Island
Way out in the Bering Sea, St Matthew Island is one of the most remote locations in Alaska, a day’s sailing from the nearest human settlement. Foxes and voles are the only resident mammals, though polar bears have been known to visit, and the cliffs provide shelter for birds including Brünnich’s guillemots, parakeet auklets and glaucous gulls.
United States: St Paul Island
St Paul is the largest of the Pribilof Islands, situated in the middle of the Bering Sea between the US and Russia. Sparsely populated by humans, the island comes alive in summer with some 500,000 northern fur seals and sea birds including tufted puffins, auklets, kittiwakes, cormorants and fulmars.
United States: Dutch Harbor
Dutch Harbor is the port that serves the city of Unalaska, and is known for the hardy fishermen who brave the turbulent, icy seas off the Aleutian Islands. Points of interest include the remains of defensive fortifications built during the Second World War and the striking Russian Orthodox church.
United States: Unga Island
United States: Chignik
Out on the Alaskan peninsula, 250 miles to the south west of Kodiak Island, lies the remote village of Chignik, home to fewer than 100 permanent residents. The area is best known for its fishing, and is home to bird species including bald eagles, marbled murrelets, emperor geese and Steller’s eider.
United States: Kodiak
Kodiak is known as Alaska’s ‘Emerald Isle’ thanks to the lush green countryside, a landscape crisscrossed by gushing salmon-filled streams that provides a home to around 3,000 Kodiak bears, the world’s largest. Ships dock in Kodiak city, an important fishing port with a fascinating Russian heritage.
United States: Seward
The tiny city of Seward, home to just 3,000 people, enjoys a spectacular setting on the edge of Resurrection Bay, on Alaska’s southern coast. Surrounded by the mountains and forests of the Kenai Fjords National Park, it’s a great base for exploring the Harding Ice Field and the stunning scenery of the Kenai Peninsula.
United States: Sitka
Sitka was founded by Russian fur traders in 1799 as the city of New Archangel, and there is still a discernible Russian influence here, including the distinctive St Michael’s Orthodox Cathedral. The town also enjoys spectacular natural surroundings, facing the Pacific Ocean and dramatic Mount Edgecumbe.
United States: Wrangell
Back in its 19th century heyday Wrangell was a lawless gold rush town, and it's still a little rough around the edges, but it's also a very welcoming place, ideal for exploring the surrounding Alaskan wilderness. Take a trip to the nearby Anan Wildlife Observatory for the chance to see black and brown bears at close proximity.
United States: Misty Fjords
The breathtaking Misty Fjords National Monument is a 3,570-square-mile swathe of virgin forest and plunging fjords, just to the east of Ketchikan. As the name suggests, the fjords are often cloaked in a fine mist, and the wilderness is home to bears, bald eagles, whales and more.
Arriving in Vancouver
Cosmopolitan Vancouver is a city that rewards exploration, an eminently liveable place and an easy gateway to the natural beauty of British Columbia. The culinary scene here is a particular draw, with seafood galore and some fantastic Asian restaurants, and the city has also been at the forefront of the craft beer movement. Verdant Stanley Park is a favourite of locals and visitors alike, while Kitsilano's beaches and wooden houses are wonderfully picturesque. Cultural attractions tend to be on a smaller scale than you'd expect from a city of this size, but the thrill of stumbling across one of Vancouver's quirky little galleries is all part of the city's appeal.
Canadians call their one-dollar coins “loonies” (because it bears the image of a loon) and their two-dollar coins “toonies” so sort out your vocabulary and talk like a local!
Your home from home
Hurtigruten's pioneering hybrid vessels, MS Roald Amundsen and MS Fridtjof Nansen, offer a more sustainable way to explore the polar regions.
What we love
Hurtigruten's groundbreaking hybrid technology reduces fuel consumption and carbon emissions by 20%, a bold step towards a more sustainable future for the expedition cruising industry. These ships are designed specifically for exploring the polar regions, and the inviting suites and public areas represent a significant evolution of the Hurtigruten onboard experience.
|Capacity||528 Guests (500 in Antarctica)|
|Style||These pioneering hybrid ships offer a contemporary and relaxed ambience, acting as a comfortable 'base camp' at sea.|
Tailor-make your trip
Our favourite hotel in Vancouver
If you’re not committed to the waterfront where the ships come in, we love the Rosewood Hotel Georgia.
Stay a little longer in Canada
If you’ve time, set aside a couple of days to travel to Knight Inlet Lodge for bear viewing.