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Discover Greenland's glistening icebergs and historic settlements with a luxury cruise

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Itinerary Highlights

  • Enjoy a food tour in the Icelandic capital of Reykjavik
  • Visit the otherworldly black lava beaches in southern Iceland
  • Hike the Sólheimajökull glacier
  • An 11-night Silver Cloud cruise to discover the wonders of Greenland
  • Visit the Prins Christian Sound, one of South Greenland’s most dramatic natural features
  • Discover Greenland’s first town, Nuuk
  • Enjoy a night at the famous Blue Lagoon hotel in Reykjavik

What's Included

  • Privately guided tours and experiences mentioned on this itinerary
  • Luxury accommodation throughout
  • Full support from your travel designer and concierge before, during and after your trip
  • All internal flights
  • Private transfers
  • Expert guides in each destination
  • Our help with restaurant recommendations and reservations
Use this itinerary to inspire your bespoke journey

At a glance

Start this Arctic exploration with a stop in the Icelandic capital of Reykjavik where you’ll immediately get a taste of the country with an Icelandic food tour.

Next you’ll fly north to the Golden Circle where you’ll explore the wondrous landscapes of Southern Iceland with a coastal tour of the vast black lava beaches, enormous waterfalls, fascinating rock formations and enchanting glacier tongues, before hiking the Sólheimajökull glacier.

Next up is your 11-night cruise through the glistening arctic waters surrounding Greenland. You’ll start with the Skoldungen Fjord and its enchanting icy scenery before visiting the incredible Prins Christian Sound.

You’ll visit many small and historic settlements such as Brattahlid, once home to Erik the Red, who founded Greenland in the Viking era. You’ll also discover the Hvalsey Church, the best preserved church in Greenland dating back to the 14th century.

You’ll also stop at larger settlements such as Nuuk and Ilulissat where colourful houses add charm to the tundra. In Nuuk you’ll get the chance to discover more about Greenlandic culture at the Greenlandic National Museum and Katuaq Cultural Centre.

After returning to shore, you’ll fly back to Reykjavik to enjoy a relaxing final night in the world-renowned hotel, The Retreat at Blue Lagoon Iceland.

Example Trip Itinerary

Days 1-2

Reykjavik

Flights & Transfers

Transfer

Private transfer to your hotel

Accommodation in Reykjavik

Fish tapas in Reykjavic, Iceland
Reykjavik food tour Reykjavik food tour

Get a real taste of this city during a foodie tour, where you will walk in and around downtown Reykjavik with a knowledgable local guide, admiring the city’s most beautiful attractions. First and foremost you will of course be exploring Reykjavik's food scene, and you'll visit some unique restaurants and enjoy delicious Icelandic cuisine.

Flights & Transfers

Transfer

Private transfer to your hotel

Days 2-4

Golden Circle

Accommodation in Golden Circle

Snowmobiling in the Golden Circle Snowmobiling in the Golden Circle

Snowmobile through incredible Icelandic landscapes, enjoying the epic views and adrenaline rush.

Golden Circle Tour Golden Circle Tour

Drive to Thingvellir, the site of the oldest democratic parliament in the world, and the point where the slowly separating North American and Eurasian tectonic plates can be clearly seen. During the tour, visit Geysir, the geyser which gave its name to all other erupting hot springs, and one of the most active geysers in the area, Strokkur. Continue on to the breathtaking Gullfoss waterfall, then follow the main rift down to Lake Thingvallavatn.

Southern Iceland Coastal Tour - Vik i Myrdal, Seljalandsfoss and Skogarfoss Southern Iceland Coastal Tour - Vik i Myrdal, Seljalandsfoss and Skogarfoss

The South coast of Iceland is a magical area filled with adventure opportunities. Vast black lava beaches as far as they eye can see, massive waterfalls, fascinating rock formations and enchanting glacier tongues, all within an arm’s reach. Fenced in between the Atlantic Ocean in the South and a big ice cap to the North as well as two big glacier rivers to the East and West, the area is quite spectacular with the black sand and hard ocean waves beating the shore of Reynisfjara beach. The rock formations of Reynisdrangar are a signature landmark. During this trip we visit the charming local town Vík í Mýrdal and two of Iceland’s most famous waterfalls; Seljalandsfoss and Skógarfoss both thundering down 60 meters.

Glacier hike Glacier hike

At Sólheimajökull glacier tongue, you'll get a chance to observe the amazing glacier and take a hike on the ice. The walk isn't too strenuous and you'll be accompanied by a knowledgeable, certified glacier guide.

Flights & Transfers

Transfer

Transfer to Reykjavik harbour

Days 4-15

Greenland Cruise

Your Expedition Ship

Silver Cloud Greenland cruise - Day One Silver Cloud Greenland cruise - Day One

Depart Iceland’s coastal capital and set sail on this Greenlandic adventure. Days at sea are the perfect opportunity to relax, unwind and catch up with what you’ve been meaning to do. So whether that is going to the gym, visiting the spa, whale watching, catching up on your reading or simply topping up your tan, these blue sea days are the perfect balance to busy days spent exploring shore side.

Silver Cloud Greenland cruise - Day Two Silver Cloud Greenland cruise - Day Two

Located on Greenland’s relatively rarely visited rugged east coast, the Skoldungen Fjord has enchanting scenery with towering mountains tipped with snow, ice-scraped valley sides and sculptured icebergs in shades of white and blue. At the top of the fjord one can easily see the retreating state of the Thrym Glacier. The U-shaped fjord offers spectacular scenery and as an extra perk, it is not uncommon to see whales in the fjord.

Silver Cloud Greenland cruise - Day Three Silver Cloud Greenland cruise - Day Three

Connecting the Denmark Strait with the Davis Strait, Prins Christian Sund offers a protected course from southeastern to southwestern Greenland, and is one of South Greenland’s most dramatic natural features. The water is generally placid and the crisp scent of ice fills the air. On either side of the Sund, waterfalls stream down sharp, wrinkled mountainsides. Depending on weather conditions, icebergs that glitter in the sun may be constant companions during the passage. Born of compacted ancient snows that formed glaciers and now calve into the sound at the glacier’s edge, each iceberg is different from the next.

Aappilattoq is a small settlement near the western end of Prins Christian Sund in southwestern Greenland. This small village of 130 inhabitants, hidden behind a prominent rock, offers a good insight into the life of Greenlandic Inuit. A stroll through the village will reveal a small school and a church. People have lived simple lives, surviving off the bounty of the land in the area around Aappilattoq since the 19th century. The tradition continues today as most people here hunt and fish to make a living.

Silver Cloud Greenland cruise - Day Four Silver Cloud Greenland cruise - Day Four

Nanortalik lies in a scenic area surrounded by steep mountainsides and is Greenland’s tenth-largest and most southerly town with less than 1500 inhabitants. The town’s name means the “place of polar bears”, which refers to the polar bears that once could be seen floating offshore, though bear sightings are now extremely rare. Nanortalik has an excellent open-air museum that gives a broad picture of the region from Inuit times to today. Part of the exhibition is a summer hunting camp, where Inuit in traditional clothing describe aspects of their ancestor’s customs and lifestyle.

Uunartoq is a small island in South Greenland a short distance east of what once was considered the largest settlement in Greenland. The island has hot springs that were renowned as far back as the days of the Norse for their healing effects. Three naturally heated streams have been channeled to flow into a knee-deep and stone-lined pool. While one unwinds by soaking in the steaming waters, one can watch icebergs that either clog the fjord to the north or come floating by.

Silver Cloud Greenland cruise – Day Five Silver Cloud Greenland cruise – Day Five

The largest town in southern Greenland, Qaqortoq has been inhabited since prehistoric times. Upon arrival in this charming southern Greenland enclave, it's easy to see why. Qaqortoq rises quite steeply over the fjord system around the city, offering breath-taking panoramic vistas of the surrounding mountains and deep blue sea, Lake Tasersuag, icebergs in the bay, and pastoral backcountry. Although the earliest signs of ancient civilization in Qaqortoq date back 4,300 years, Qaqortoq is known to have been inhabited by Norse and Inuit settlers in the 10th and 12th centuries, and the present-day town was founded in 1774. In the years since, Qaqortoq has evolved into a seaport and trading hub for fish and shrimp processing, tanning, fur production, and ship maintenance and repair.

Northeast of Qaqortoq and at the end of a fjord, Hvalsey is one of the best examples of South Greenland’s many scattered ruins from the Norse period. Today the area is used for sheep-grazing, but until the 15th century the settlement at Hvalsey, and specifically Hvalsey’s church, played an important part. Christianity had spread its influence throughout Europe and eventually had reached remote Greenland, where it established itself in the country in 1000 AD. Hvalsey Church was built in the 14th century and is the best preserved of the churches in Greenland from that period. Apart from the church walls, historical ruins from the time of the Norse are just a few meters away.

Silver Cloud Greenland cruise – Day Six Silver Cloud Greenland cruise – Day Six

Qassiarsuk is the newer, Greenlandic name for this small village. Brattahlid is the older, Norse name. Here we tour the foundation remains of the manor house of Erik the Red, who found Greenland after being banished from Iceland and Norway for murder. We will also visit the site of the first Christian church ever built in North America (physiographically speaking), see a recently unearthed Norse graveyard that contains remains of 144 Norse colonists, and have a chance to admire Hans Lynge’s remarkable bronze sculpture of Erik the Red.

Itilleq is an idyllic little village located on a small island about a half a mile off the west coast of Greenland, and only about a mile north of the Arctic Circle. It is one of the most picturesque villages in Greenland with its quaint colorful houses surrounded by stunning rugged mountains and glaciers. Originally, the village of Itilleq was founded on another island in 1847, but was later moved to its present location. The 100 people living here today survive mainly on hunting and fishing, with a fish factory being the main employer.

Silver Cloud Greenland cruise – Day Seven Silver Cloud Greenland cruise – Day Seven

Days at sea are the perfect opportunity to relax, unwind and catch up with what you’ve been meaning to do. So whether that is going to the gym, visiting the spa, whale watching, catching up on your reading or simply topping up your tan, these blue sea days are the perfect balance to busy days spent exploring shore side.

Silver Cloud Greenland cruise – Day Eight Silver Cloud Greenland cruise – Day Eight

Nuuk, meaning “the cape”, was Greenland’s first town (1728). Started as a fort and later mission and trading post some 240 kilometers south of the Arctic Circle, it is the current capital. Almost 30% of Greenland’s population lives in the town. Not only does Nuuk have great natural beauty in its vicinity, but there are Inuit ruins, Hans Egede’s home, the parliament, and the Church of our Saviour as well. The Greenlandic National Museum has an outstanding collection of Greenlandic traditional dresses, as well as the famous Qilakitsoq mummies. The Katuaq Cultural Center’s building was inspired by the undulating Northern Lights and can house 10% of Nuuk’s inhabitants.

Silver Cloud Greenland cruise – Day Nine Silver Cloud Greenland cruise – Day Nine

Within roughly an hour of steaming south from Kangerlussuaq Fjord is Evighedsfjord Fjord. The fjords in this area can reach close to a kilometer (over half a mile) of depth and are lined with tidewater glaciers from the Maniitsoq ice sheet located high up in the interior of Greenland. Some of the cliffs along the fjords of this region can exceed 2,000 metres (6,600 ft.) in height.

The Evigheids Glacier flows from the Greenland Ice Sheet, the second largest ice body in the world after the Antarctic ice sheet, to the west. It is a slow-moving tidewater glacier, meaning this valley glacier winds down through the coastal mountains to the ocean at a snail’s pace. As the glacial ice enters the water it begins to float and the eventually breaks apart into icebergs that float away down the fjord. The shades of blue and carved shapes of these ice floes are infinite.

Only 350 people live in the small Greenlandic community of Kangaamiut. Located on the south coast of Timerdlit Island and facing the Davis Strait, Kangaamiut is situated between the mouths of two long fjords: the Kangerlussuatsiaq Fjord (or Evighedsfjorden in Danish) to its south and to its north Kangaamiut Kangerluarsuat Fjord. Founded in 1755, it was called “Sugarloaf” (Sukkertoppen) because of the appearance of three nearby hills.

Silver Cloud Greenland cruise – Day Ten Silver Cloud Greenland cruise – Day Ten

Known as the birthplace of icebergs, the Ilulissat Icefjord produces nearly 20 million tons of ice each day. In fact, the word Ilulissat means “icebergs” in the Kalaallisut language. The town of Ilulissat is known for its long periods of calm and settled weather, but the climate tends to be cold due to its proximity to the fjord. Approximately 4,500 people live in Ilulissat, the third-largest town in Greenland after Nuuk and Sisimiut. Some people here estimate that there are nearly as many sled dogs as human beings living in the town that also boasts a local history museum located in the former home of Greenlandic folk hero and famed polar explorer Knud Rasmussen.

Silver Cloud Greenland cruise – Day Eleven Silver Cloud Greenland cruise – Day Eleven

Located just north of the Arctic Circle, Sisimiut is the northernmost town in Greenland where the port remains free of ice in the winter. Yet it is also the southernmost town where there is enough snow and ice to drive a dogsled in winter and spring. In Sisimiut, travelling by sled has been the primary means of winter transportation for centuries. In fact, the area has been inhabited for approximately 4,500 years. Modern Sisimiut is the largest business center in the north of Greenland, and is one of the fastest growing Greenlandic cities. Commercial fishing is the lead economy in the town‘s thriving industrial base.

Finally, you'll head to Kangerlussuaq. This is a settlement in western Greenland in the Qeqqata municipality located at the head of the fjord of the same name (Danish: Søndre Strømfjord). It is Greenland's main air transport hub and the site of Greenland's largest commercial airport. The airport dates from American settlement during and after World War II, when the site was known as Bluie West-8 and Sondrestrom Air Base. The Kangerlussuaq area is also home to Greenland's most diverse terrestrial fauna, including muskoxen, caribou, and gyrfalcons. The settlement's economy and population of 512 is almost entirely reliant on the airport and tourist industry.

Silver Cloud Greenland cruise – Day Twelve Silver Cloud Greenland cruise – Day Twelve

Finally, you'll head to Kangerlussuaq. This is a settlement in western Greenland in the Qeqqata municipality located at the head of the fjord of the same name (Danish: Søndre Strømfjord). It is Greenland's main air transport hub and the site of Greenland's largest commercial airport. The airport dates from American settlement during and after World War II, when the site was known as Bluie West-8 and Sondrestrom Air Base. The Kangerlussuaq area is also home to Greenland's most diverse terrestrial fauna, including muskoxen, caribou, and gyrfalcons. The settlement's economy and population of 512 is almost entirely reliant on the airport and tourist industry.

Flights & Transfers

Flight

Flight from Kangerlussuaq to Reykjavik

Transfer

Private transfer to your hotel

Days 15-16

Reykjavik

Accommodation in Reykjavik

Flights & Transfers

Transfer

Private transfer to Reykjavik airport

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