Ships
Aleutian Islands, Kamchatka & Bering Sea
Aleutian Islands, Kamchatka & Bering Sea
03/07/22 to 19/07/22
Dates
03/07/22 to 19/07/22
Ship
Vega 1
Duration
17 Days
Guests
2 Guest
Price From
£ 20,450.00
Per Cabin
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Trip Details

Embark on an incredible journey aboard our boutique ship crossing the ocean from Alaska to Russia. This unique voyage takes us around the northern part of the Pacific Ring of Fire from Alaska and the Aleutian Islands to Kamchatka and the Kuril islands in eastern Russia as we circumnavigate the Bering Sea. Magnificent volcanos, waters rich with sea life and cliffs brimming with birds are just a few of the highlights of this epic cruise, as we try to spot brown bears, steller sea lions, whales and puffins on this remarkable adventure to some of the least-visited places on the planet.

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Trip Highlights

Embark on an incredible journey aboard our boutique ship crossing the ocean from Alaska to Russia. This unique voyage takes us around the northern part of the Pacific Ring of Fire from Alaska and the Aleutian Islands to Kamchatka and the Kuril islands in eastern Russia as we circumnavigate the Bering Sea. Magnificent volcanos, waters rich with sea life and cliffs brimming with birds are just a few of the highlights of this epic cruise, as we try to spot brown bears, steller sea lions, whales and puffins on this remarkable adventure to some of the least-visited places on the planet.

Witness walrus skin boat racing and crafting traditions of Siberian Yupik in remote northern settlements
Take a dip in hot springs warmed by volcanic activity
Look up at the cliffs to see horned and tufted puffin, thick-billed murres and red-legged kittiwake
Observe brown bears fishing for salmon in Kenai Fjords National Park
Learn from our experts about tectonic activity in the northern Pacific Ring of Fire as we circumnavigate the Bering Sea
Itinerary Map
Itinerary
Day 1, Seward

“Alaska starts here” is the motto of this charming port town situated on Alaska's southern coast that acts as a gateway to Kenai Fjords National Park. This is an epic landscape of dense forest and snow-capped mountains that is home to brown bears and bald eagles. Nearby Exit Glacier gives you the chance to see porpoises and majestic whales flex and flip in crystal-clear waters. The busy harbour has a quaint collection of welcoming cafes, galleries and shops.

Day 2, Holgate Glacier & Chiswell Islands, Alaska

An opportunity to experience an unforgettable moment, the Holgate Glacier in Kenai Fjords National Park, gives adventurers the chance to see incredible calving glaciers and hear the thunderous sounds reverberate across the waters. Up close to this huge glacier, a spectrum of colours play on the ice as nearby seals lounge nonchalantly on ice floes and gulls flit all around. Make sure you have your camera ready as this is a sight you’ll want to capture.

Day 3, Larsen Bay, Kodiak Island, Alaska

Set in a spectacular valley off a narrow fjord, Larsen Bay lies 60 miles southwest of Kodiak and within Kodiak Island’s National Wildlife Refuge; a 2,800-square mile refuge of diverse habitat. Because of this there’s the opportunity to see mighty Kodiak brown bears, deer, sea lions, seals as well as eagles. In 1991, the Smithsonian Institution returned the remains of 756 Alutiiq Natives, a burial that marked the largest repatriation of Native remains ever conducted by the Smithsonian.

Day 4, Castle Bay, Alaska

Close to the fishing village of Chignik, Castle Bay features a high skyline of surrounding stratified rock, rugged mountains, pinnacle formations and sandstone towers that gave the area of Castle Bay its name. These towering, jagged peaks of contrasting shale, sandstone and conglomerates, indented heavily by the sea, give out different shades in their layers which makes the whole bay distinctively entrancing and act as a famous landmark to ships navigating nearby.

Day 5, Unga Island

Subject to a small gold rush in the late 1800s, Unga Island is now uninhabited but you will see remnants of its past in the relics of the gold mine and collapsed houses overgrown with beautiful and bright wildflowers. The picturesque Aleutian island, the largest of the Shumagin Islands, has a rare and ancient petrified forest that is beguiling to witness. Along the cliffs, double-crested and pelagic cormorants, common murres and peregrine falcons glide, dart and dive.

Day 6, Dutch Harbor, Alaska

A mile-long spit on Amaknak Island in the Fox Islands, Dutch Harbor was one of the few sites to suffer from aerial bombardment in World War II and you can still see concrete bunkers and former gun emplacements. The native Aleut people have inhabited this area for around 9,000 years but the strong influence of the Russian Orthodox Church can be seen in the characteristic onion domes. The sprightly arctic fox and bright-beaked horned and tufted puffins are all residents here.

Day 7, St Paul Island, Alaska

The island fictionalised in a scene of Rudyard Kipling’s story The White Seal and poem ‘Lukannon’ in The Jungle Book, St Paul Island is the largest of the Pribilof Islands. It is a birding migratory capital - part of the Alaska Maritime National Wildlife Refuge - and it is a breeding ground for more than half a million northern fur seals. The landscape is craggy and uneven with sheer cliffs in a few headlands. Until c. 3,750 BC, the Woolly mammoth roamed these plains.

Day 8, St Matthew Island, Alaska

A remote island in the Bering Sea and part of the Alaska Maritime National Wildlife Refuge, St Matthew Island is recovering its tundra following the uncontrolled release of caribou that were a feature here for 40 years. Massive cliffs give shelter to Brünnich’s guillemots, parakeet auklets and glaucous gulls, while on land arctic foxes move stealthily through plants regaining a hold such as pacific silverweed and purple saxifrage. Polar bears have been known to make an occasional visit.

Day 9, Provideniya

The gateway to the Russian Far East, this former Soviet military port on Komsomolskaya Bay is at the southern limit of the Arctic ice pack. The town has a small museum charting the history of whaling and fishing and the displacement of the indigenous Siberian Yupik that caused irreversible cultural change. From seal fishing to their renowned dancing, we learn more about Yupik culture on a visit to a settlement at Novoye Chaplino overlooking a picturesque fjord.

Day 10, Naukan & Uelen Village

Naukan is a deserted Yupik village on Cape Dezhnev where villagers lived on the whaling and fur trade as walrus, seal and whale hunters. Abandoned in 1958 as part of the Yupik displacement, the village was cut off from vital supplies that normally arrived by ship. The Yupik were made to move from their yuranga-tented village to so-called modern settlements, and the inevitable shift has caused irreversible cultural change. Nearby, mysterious whalebone and rock formations overlook the sea.

Day 11, Kolyuchin Island

Conservationists will guide you over soft tundra and point out rare lichens, mosses and wildflowers where scurrying ground squirrels hunt for food. Kolyuchin also has some of the Arctic’s most spectacular bird cliffs, with puffins, guillemots and gulls, and a photogenic walrus haul-out. Off the north coast of the Chukotka Peninsula, this small island was once an important centre for research into polar bears and walruses, one of a number dotted across the Arctic.

Day 12, Lavrentiya

Lavrentiya is an important village in Chukotka and to the Chukchi Yupiks. Close to the Bering Strait, this is the home of the Beringia Regatta and Festival which brings together athletes to compete in events such as bidarka - walrus skin boat - racing, alongside cultural group performances. Among colourful red and green houses is the village’s museum with a significant collection of indigenous artefacts reflecting traditions and spiritual culture. Close by are the Lorino hot springs.

Day 13, Proliv Senyavina Hot Springs & Yttygran Island

An important local attraction, the hot springs are part of Novoye Chaplino area in Chukotka. We will take the Zodiacs to a small lagoon at the southern end of the Proliv Senyavina passage. From there, it is a short hike across the cushiony tundra to the Proliv Senyavina Hot Springs. If you fancy a dip, either hop into the stream heated with the natural hot springs or soak in the small pool. The mysterious Whale Bone Alley is the main attraction on this remote Siberian island off the coast of Chukotka. The eerie archaeological site is lined with 600-year- old whale jaw and rib bones that have been stuck into the ground and erected like archways, some five metres high. This unique 550-metre path is the perfect place to stretch your legs and ponder its mystical origins as either a shrine or a gathering place for hunters to store their food.

Day 14, Nunligran

Along the southern coast of Chukotka is the settlement of Nunligran, a Chukchi village near Lake Achchen where sockeye salmon come to spawn. Thousands of nesting seabirds - northern fulmars, murres, black-legged kittiwakes, herring and glaucous gulls, pelagic cormorants - roost along the craggy cliffs while ringed seals haul out along the coastline. This is a place where Chukchi people traditionally hunted for whales and walrus. Watch for harbor porpoises, white, minke and bowhead whales, as well as bearded and spotted seals.

Day 15, Sireniki

Sireniki is one of a handful of traditional Siberian Yupik villages that remain along the southern coast of Chukotka, and is the only one that has not been relocated. Traditionally reindeer herders and whale and walrus hunters, the Sirenik Yupik also had their own Eskimo language, but this has died out. Our Zodiac excursions take us alongside the cliffs where murres, kittiwakes, long-necked black cormorants, stiff- winged fulmarks, glaucous gulls and little auks come to nest.

Day 16, Provideniya

The gateway to the Russian Far East, this former Soviet military port on Komsomolskaya Bay is at the southern limit of the Arctic ice pack. The town has a small museum charting the history of whaling and fishing and the displacement of the indigenous Siberian Yupik that caused irreversible cultural change. From seal fishing to their renowned dancing, we learn more about Yupik culture on a visit to a settlement at Novoye Chaplino overlooking a picturesque fjord.

Day 17, Nome

Nome is the most famous gold rush town in Alaska (the town’s welcome sign is marked on the state’s largest gold pan). This wind-swept tundra landscape is a haven for wildflowers. Hardy muskoxen forage, bear and caribou roam, and the mountain streams provide a freshwater habitat for spawning wild Alaskan salmon. Excursions include mushing, panning for gold on the beaches and trips to the Bering Land Bridge National Preserve.

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Rates Include
One night pre-cruise hotel accommodation with breakfast
Transfer from the airport to the hotel on the day prior to embarkation
Transfer from the hotel to the port for embarkation
Transfer from the port to the airport on return
Onboard accommodation
All meals onboard including room service 24 hours a day
Coffee, tea, soft drinks & select alcoholic beverages 24 hours a day
Lecture programmes by our experienced expedition team and guest speakers
Shore excursion programme led by our expert expedition team
Branded Swan Hellenic expedition parka
Use of rubber boots for shore landings
Basic WIFI inclusion (Premium WIFI available)
Onboard gratuities & port taxes
*Itineraries & prices are subject to change*
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Cabins
Number of Guests
Oceanview
19 m2 Sleeps 2
Oceanview cabins features 2 single beds, bedroom and living room and a luxurious ensuite bathroom.
Price From
£ 10225
Balcony
28 m2 Sleeps 2
Features 2 single beds, bedroom and living room, a luxurious ensuite bathroom and your own private 6 sq.m. balcony.
Price From
£ 14150
Suite
44 m2 Sleeps 2
Our Suites features a superking bed and separate living room with and a soothing flame-effect fireplace a luxurious ensuite bathroom and a 12 sq.m. private balcony.
Price From
£ 20225
Premium Suite
49 m2 Sleeps 2
Our grandest suites features a superking bed and separate living room with and a soothing flame-effect fireplace a luxurious ensuite bathroom, spacious walk in wardrobe and a 12 sq.m private balcony.
Price From
£ 26125
Itinerary Map