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Setting sail from Tromsø
Tromsø is often referred to as the Gateway to the Arctic. Its beauty astonishes new visitors with its magnificent views over the Tromsø strait. Tromsø's location, well within the Arctic Circle, means the summer months are lit by the Midnight Sun, a compensation for some rather long, dark winters. It is a wonderful city to explore on foot, wandering along the streets with their multi-coloured wooden houses. A must see is the amazing architecture of the Arctic cathedral, or perhaps take the cable car up to Mount Storsteinen (1382ft) for a fantastic view.
Visit during June or July to see the Midnight Sun - take the cable car for a better view (we were impressed that it runs until past midnight, but do check).
Skarsvåg is the world’s most northerly fishing village, situated on the north coast of the Norwegian island of Magerøya. The village is less than 10 miles from the North Cape, where the Arctic and Atlantic oceans meet, and you may spot reindeer grazing on the surrounding tundra.
Svolvær is the largest town in the Lofoten Islands, though with just over 4,000 inhabitants it’s hardly a bustling metropolis. From the picturesque harbour you can strike out into the stunning Lofoten countryside, where dramatic mountains tower above rustic little fishing villages.
The little village of Reine enjoys one of the most spectacular settings in the Lofoten Islands, where the colourful wooden fishermen’s cabins are dwarfed by towering mountains. For the picture postcard view you’ll need to scale the 1,500 or so stone steps to the top of Reinebringen.
Norway: Vega Archipelago
Some 6,500 islands make up the Vega Archipelago, a UNESCO World Heritage Site just to the south of the Arctic Circle. The islands are home to more than 230 species of bird, including Norway’s largest colony of eider ducks, and the houses built for the ducks to nest in are a characteristic feature of the landscape.
Situated halfway up the coast of Norway on a narrow peninsula, the little town of Brønnøysund is a pleasant place to stroll the streets and enjoy a drink in a cosy pub. The town’s centrepiece is the neo-Gothic Brønnøy Church, while just offshore are the UNESCO-listed Vega Islands.
When Ålesund was destroyed by fire in 1904, the German Kaiser Wilhelm II agreed to foot the bill to rebuild it. The result was the stunning Art Nouveau architecture that you see today, which blends elements of the German 'Jugendstil' with Viking flourishes.
Dramatically located at the head of the Aurlandsfjord, the picturesque little village of Flåm is a popular base for excursions into Norway’s great outdoors. Strike out into the surrounding countryside and you’ll find steep mountains, cascading waterfalls and bucolic farms, with some spectacular walking and cycling trails.
Beautiful Bergen, Norway’s former capital, is a perfect city to explore on foot. Bryggen – the old Hanseatic wharf, and a UNESCO World Heritage site – still has the old harbour timber buildings, whilst other attractions include the funicular up Mount Floyen and the busy fish market.
United Kingdom: Lerwick
Lerwick is the only town of any size in the Shetland islands, and originally grew up around the herring trade. Highlights include the charming 18th century architecture along the waterfront and the informative Shetland Museum, which provides an excellent introduction to the history and culture of the islands.
United Kingdom: Kirkwall (Orkney Islands)
The flat, windswept Orkney Islands, just off the northeast coast of Scotland, have a distinctive Scandinavian heritage that’s discernible in everything from the unusual place names to the ancient Norse architecture of the capital, Kirkwall. Don’t miss the Ring of Brodgar, a fascinating Neolithic stone circle.
United Kingdom: Leith (Edinburgh)
Cosmopolitan Edinburgh, Scotland’s lovely capital, is located in spectacular countryside, always visible from the city centre. Striking architecture, lots to see and do, and great food mean that your time here will be very busy. And if your visit coincides with the Festival, you have a treat in store.
Arriving in London (Greenwich)
Greenwich is one of London's most fascinating boroughs, rich in maritime history and with a discernible seaside feel, in spite of the fact that it lies just 8 miles downstream from the city centre. This was once the seat of British naval power, and you can learn more about the area's seafaring heritage at the fascinating National Maritime Museum. Other attractions include the Cutty Sark, the O2 Arena and the Royal Observatory, where you can straddle two hemispheres by placing one foot either side of the Greenwich Meridian Line.
Your home from home
Get set for the arrival of Crystal Endeavor in 2021, the world's largest and most luxurious expedition yacht.
What we love
This is the coolest expedition operation yet. On board is the ultimate in luxury at the Crystal level we know so well, but even more exciting is what is going to happen off the ship, as they navigate first year ice in the polar regions and follow the route of migrating whales.
A wealth of extraordinary toys including submarines, helicopters and remote operated vehicles will ensure that a Crystal Yacht Expedition creates the most extraordinary memories even for the most jaded of travellers.
|Style||The ultimate in luxury expedition cruising.|
Tailor-make your trip
Our favourite hotel in Tromsø
The Scandic Ishavshotel has a great location on the quay so nearly all the rooms have magnificent views.
Take a tour by RIB to see the beautiful islands and beaches of this remote region, lapped by Gulf Stream waters.