Friday, December 27 - Overnight Flight
Travel/Fly from Boston, Miami or your best airport to Newark, NJ (EWR). Meet in Newark Airport and we all depart on SAS at 6:55pm nonstop to Oslo (overnight flight)
Saturday, December 28 - Arrive Oslo from U.S. / Explore Oslo
Welcome to Norway! Your unique New Years Adventure starts now! Walk over to the Radisson BLU Oslo Airport Hotel. Check in and check luggage at hotel. Day/Eve at leisure to relax or visit Oslo. Evening informal get-together: Meet travel companions!
If you wish to venture into downtown Oslo, the trains run frequently into Oslo central station (Oslo S). The Oslo Airport Express Train (flytoget) departs every 10 minutes and takes 19 minutes (approx 196 NOK/$23 USD adult each way) and approx. 98 NOK/$12 USD senior. A local regional train at half the cost but twice the time. Or take the airport bus (Flybussen) from the Radisson Blu Hotel.
Sunday, December 29 - Oslo to Kirkenes / Sightseeing, Husky Safari (Dog Sledding), and MORE!
Breakfast is included at the Radisson Blu. Walk to the Oslo Airport. We fly north and in 2 1/4 hours we arrive in Kirkenes, Norway, the northernmost point in europe, at the border of Russia and Finnish Lapland. Upon arrival at the airport, we begin our Arctic Adventure with an included guided tour where we will learn about the people of Kirkenes, a fascinating melting pot of neighbor cultures together with the indigenous Sami People.
Our tour ends at the famous Snowhotel (think "ice hotel"), where we enjoy our included Norwegian-style light lunch.
This afternoon the excitement begins with our included Husky safari! This tour is one of the best ways to travel in the Arctic Tundra. You get warm clothing and will be taken to your husky team. Our musher drives the sledge, and guests are taking part as passengers (2-3 per sledge). There will be short stops en route for photos. Normal physical condition is necessary to participate.
Dinner this evening is included at the Showhotel restaurant. If the weather is clear, you will have the possibility of seeing the northern lights.
For those who have upgraded to the Snowhotel rooms, you will stay on property and learn about what your exciting overnight adventure will entail! Limited double and single occupancy "cold" and "warm" rooms are available with a supplemental cost for these Snowhotel rooms. Book them as soon as possible! (Overnight Kirkenes)
Monday, December 30 - Board Hurtigruten's Polarlys in Kirkenes and begin southbound Coastal Cruise
Breakfast is included this morning either at the Sollia Guesthouse or the Snowhotel restaurant. Morning at leisure. Transfer to our ship is included. The Polarlys departs Kirkenes at 12:30pm. This afternoon we stop in Vardo 3:45-4:45 pm, Norway's easternmost port. Weather permitting, ice bathing in the Arctic Ocean will be offered. Batsfjord 7:45-8:45 pm. Berlevag 9:45-10pm. (REMINDER: Optional exhilarating Snowmobile shore excursion from Mehamn departs in a few hours. Must be pre-purchased.)
Tuesday, December 31 - Mehamn - Tromso & New Years Eve
Ports visited today: Mehamn (Popular optional excursion: Snowmobile trip into the polar night / Book as soon as possible - very limited space), Kjollefjord, Honningsvag, Havoysund, Hammerfest, (where polar bears are said to roam), Oksfjord, Skjervoy and Tromso (Popular optional excursion / Book as soon as possible: Midnight Concert in the Arctic Cathedral or grab a drink at a local friendly pub in "The Paris of the North")
Wednesday, January 1 - Tromso - Lofoten Islands - Stamsund & New Years Day
Port visited today: Tromso, Finnsnes, Harstad, Risoyhamn, Sortland, Stokmarknes, Svolvaer, and Stamsund. Today's daytime sailing through the Lofoten and Vesteralen Island groups is a highlight for many guests. This area offers some of the most stunning scenery you will see during the entire coastal cruise, renowned for its natural beauty with steep mountains, wild nature; and small, authentic fishing villages, plus Hurtigruten history.
Sailing between Harstad and Sortland, we travel through a shallow 23 ft deep channel made for Hurtigruten in the 1920s to provide and "inside route". South of Sortland, we stop in Stokmarknes where Hurtigruten was founded more than 125 years ago. We can go ashore and visit the Hurtigruten museum here.
Continuing southward, it looks like we are sailing straight into a mountain wall, but we slip through an opening leading to the the narrow Raftsund. This 12-mile passage between Lofoten and Vesteralen takes you through mountains soaring 3,300 ft directly out of the sea!
Then we reach the spectacular Trollfjord, only one mile long, 330 ft wide, and surrounded by majestic mountains. If weather and time permit, the captain will make a detour into the fjord. Steep cliffs hug the ship's sides, and the dramatic landscape conjures images of an imaginary land of trolls.
Thursday, January 2 - Bodo - Crossing the Arctic Circle - Helgeland Coast - Rorvik
Ports visited today: Bodo, Ornes, Nesna, Sandnessjoen, Bronnoysund, Rorvik
Crossing the Arctic Circle is an important rite of passage. Today we celebrate the event out on deck with a taste of Arctic tradition - a spoonful of cod liver oil! Sailing along the Helgeland coast, we pass hundreds of islets, fertile farmland, and steep granite walls rich in local lore.
Another highlight is sailing past the Seven Sisters mountain range. All seven peaks are between 2,800 and 3,600 ft high, and it is easy to understand how these 'ladies' led to an ancient sisters, the daughters of King Sulis, who kept them under strict control. One night, when the king fell into a deep sleep, the seven maidens slipped out. Vagekallen, who was eager for a wife, and several other trolls, pursued the sisters, who fled southward down the coast. When night turned to morning, the troll sisters and their pursuers were petrified, as the sun turns all trolls to stone. They became the rocks and mountains that make the Helgeland coastline one of the most beautiful places on Earth.
Friday, January 3 - Trondheim - Historical Coastal Towns - Alesund
Ports visited today: Trondheim, Kristiansund, Molde, Alesund
Saturday, January 4 - Alesund - Bergen, Mid-day we disembark the Polarlys in Bergen
Ports visited today: Alesund, Torvik, Maloy, Flore, Dock in Bergen
Breakfast is included on board the Polarlys. After arriving in Bergen at 2:30pm, we begin our included private tour of Bergen including picturesque and lively Fish Market, the UNESCO-listed historic Hanseatic Bryggen area, and a visit to the Maritime Museum.
Our tour ends at our hotel: the Thon Rosenkrantz. A light evening meal is included.
Sunday, January 5 - Breakfast at our Bergen Hotel. Morning transfer to Bergen Airport
Breakfast is included at the Thorn Rosenkrantz before our included group transfer to the Bergen airport.
A quick SAS flight departs Bergen at 9:20am and arrives in Oslo. In Oslo, we board our international SAS flight arriving Newark at 1:25pm (same day).
Welcome back to the U.S.! Travel home