* Current p/p indicative rate.
Set sail on an all-new itinerary discovering the unexplored shores of the eastern coast of Greenland. During this 15-day expedition cruise, you will follow in the footsteps of the great French explorers who pushed the boundaries of polar navigation from the 19th century onwards.
From Longyearbyen in Spitsbergen, L’Austral will head for Jan Mayen island, located on the threshold of the Arctic and North Atlantic Oceans. This isolated and uninhabited volcanic island was a whale hunting centre and is home to large bird colonies.
Your ship will then reach Greenland’s ice-covered east coast and its national park, listed as a Biosphere Reserve by UNESCO. You will explore Scoresby Sund, the largest fjord in the world. In this pure and preserved world, you will see abundant wildlife in a landscape of tundra and ice, a real delight for the eyes and for photographers.
You will then sail along the Blosseville Coast, named after the French captain who explored it in 1833. Here, the ice sheet meets the sea.
During the last part of your cruise, you will sail up the west coast of Greenland. You will be able to admire the blue-tinged icebergs of Narsaq, then call in at Nuuk, the capital of Greenland, before heading for Kangerlussuaq, where this unforgettable cruise will end.
Please Note: your voyage prices include Flight Paris / Longyearbyen + transfers + flight Kangerlussuaq / Paris
• Outings and shore visits in Zodiac® inflatables with your naturalist guides. • Hiking opportunity. • Exploring the east coast of Greenland and its pristine territories once trodden by the first French explorers. • Visiting traditional villages and meeting the Inuit people. • The scenery: fjords, rugged mountains, glaciers, icebergs, wild tundra, sheer cliffs and the polar ice cap. • The wildlife: polar bears, walruses, Arctic terns, many caribou, musk oxen, Arctic foxes and hares, narwhals and belugas, Mink whales and orcas.
Longyearbyen is the capital of the Norwegian Svalbard archipelago, located on Svalbard’s main island, and is the northernmost territorial capital on the planet. With winter temperatures dropping to below 40°C, the landscapes of this mining town are simply breathtaking. The glaciers, the mountains stretching as far as the eye can see and the untouched nature, make you feel like you’re in completely unexplored territory.
Welcome to this small, sheltered bay on the east coast of Greenland some 200 km south of Tasiilaq, for a date with history and the ice. When your ship calls here, you will have the opportunity to visit the vestiges of ancient peat houses from the Thule civilisation. Then, after navigating through the ice, you will reach the departure point of the first ever crossing of the Greenland ice sheet, led in 1888 by Fridtjof Nansen, a great Norwegian polar explorer. This is a magical place where you can climb a gentle slope to reach the ice sheet’s first foothills and get a better idea of just how gigantic it is.
Discover Skjoldungen Island on the south-east coast of Greenland. This uninhabited land boasts magnificent landscapes that are sure to dazzle you. The island is surrounded by a stunning fjord, a distinctive feature of which is its double entrance: it forms a bend before joining the sea on the other side. Mountains, glacial valleys, rocky outcrops, tundra and willow forests make up the beautiful scenery which you will be able to admire more closely when you land here. At this port of call, surrounded by wild and pristine nature, it is quite common to see bearded seals, orcas, but also birds such as the common redpoll, the northern wheatear, or the common raven.
Your ship glides silently towards the Greenland coast, in a setting punctuated by pointed peaks and majestic glaciers… You are on the verge of crossing the Prins Christian Sund, a narrow channel that stretches out and zigzags over some one hundred kilometres between Greenland’s south-east and south-west. Fall under the spell of the primitive beauty of these unique landscapes, including rocky cliffs and waterfalls that are fed by the ice sheet and plunge into the icy waters. Here, bearded seals love to lie on the floating ice to soak up the sunshine. If you are lucky, you may get to witness an aurora borealis, a stunning light show put on by the polar night…
After sailing in the Kangerlluarssuk fjord, discover the town of Narsaq. You will be dazzled by the beauty of the surrounding icebergs − large masses of ice in different shapes and shifting colours. Dominated by lush mountains, this small town is typical of Greenland. It is known for its sheep farming, made possible by the rich, grassy plains to the town’s north. This rather rare activity reflects a past and a technique inherited from the Vikings. Admire the stunning interplay of colours between the multicoloured house facades and the glaciers with their myriad shades of blue, and dive into the Scandinavian history of Narsaq by visiting the local museum. A unique experience.
When Erik Le Rouge, the exiled Norse chief, landed on the coast of Nuuk, he found a fertile and welcoming land dotted with fjords. He settled there with a group of his former countrymen, and the Norse remained the principal inhabitants until, over a period of 500 years, their population declined and gave way to the Inuit. Nuuk is situated at the mouth of one of the largest networks of fjords in the world, where the waters never freeze. The town spreads gently out towards the Davis Strait and enjoys an historic center that is particularly rich in national heritage. The vivid reds, blues, greens and yellows of the houses are a lively contrast to the somber waters of Greenland and serve to lift the spirits of the locals during the Winter months.
Your ship glides slowly along the water towards the west coast of Greenland, to enter Evighedsfjorden, just a few kilometres south of Kangerlussuaq. Evighedsfjorden means “the fjord of Eternity”, and for good reason: just when you think you’ve reached the end of this stretch of sea measuring over 100 kilometres in length, it seems to go on forever, as though to bring even more pleasure to those sailing in it. The spectacular scenery ranges from glaciers to tundra with an abundant flora, and jagged cliffs where numerous bird species have taken up residence. Take the time to observe the white-tailed eagles and the colonies of seagulls and black-legged kittiwakes flying overhead in the area.
From 1941 to 1992, the town of Kangerlussuaq in Greenland was home to an American military base. Nowadays, thanks to its international airport, it has become a transit point for travellers seeking adventure in the Far North. Located to the north of the Arctic Circle, this town is the starting point of magnificent discoveries surrounded by unspoiled nature. Indeed, just a few dozen kilometres from there it is possible to get close to the Greenland ice sheet, the largest body of ice in the Northern Hemisphere. From Kangerlussuaq, admire also the superb landscapes of tundra in autumnal colours, where Arctic hares, musk oxen, Arctic foxes, reindeer, falcons and eagles live.
Subject to ice and weather conditions. The expedition highlights and itineraries described above illustrate possible experiences only and cannot be guaranteed.
Luxury Expedition / Cruise Ship
This superb mega-yacht with 132 cabins is the result of the expertise of the Italian Fincantieri shipyard and French sophistication, as interpreted by designer Jean-Philippe Nuel. L'Austral has a unique atmosphere, a subtle blend of luxury, intimacy and well-being.
A sleek silhouette softened by elegantly smooth contours and large, arched windows opening up to the sea and the light: so many features come together to give L’Austral her distinctive shape. Precious materials, discreet elegance and a perfect balance between chic and casual, combine to make you feel as if you are on your own private yacht. A design blending tradition and innovation, where a nautical mood has been subtly recreated. Precious materials in smoothing neutral tones are brought to life with splashes of cheerful reds. So many personal touches create the spirit of a “private yacht”.
Suites and staterooms
You can expect magnificent ocean views as 124 staterooms and suites have balconies.
Individually-controlled airconditioning • Cabin layout: kingsize bed, or twin beds, communicating cabins available (children welcome) • Minibar • Flat screen satellite TV • IPod™ players • Desk with stationery • Electronic safe • French bath products • Dressing table and hairdryer • Bath robes • Satellite direct line telephone • 110/220 volts • 24hr room service • WiFi • Balcony
Loyal to the great French tradition, the haute cuisine on board is worthy of the finest restaurants, where discreet, attentive service is the hallmark.
Choose from two restaurants for breakfasts, lunch and dinner. The Gastronomic Restaurant is situated on Le Liberté Deck and serves you French and international cuisine accompagnied by fine wine. On the Grill Restaurant, you have the opportuniny to eat outside and enjoy buffet lunch and themed dinner.
Life On Board
Whether you want to join other guests in the theatre or games area (Wii™ consoles, etc), or relax on your own in a quiet corner of the library, L'Austral has been designed to meet the needs of every guest.
Everything has been done to preserve the independence of each guest to suit their personal tastes: lounges for lectures and shows, a spa in partnership with Sothys™, but also more intimate spaces such as the library and internet corner. Comfortable cabins, nearly all with private balcony, are available for families either as triples or as communicating cabins. There is also a games area with Wii™ consoles, children’s menus, and a baby-sitting service. Just as if you were on a private yacht, your time is your own to do as you please.
Fitted with the latest equipment (Kinesis Wall, running machine) and in partnership with the famous Sothys™ brand, the Beauty Centre on L'Austral welcomes you for some unforgettable moments of relaxation and pampering (beauty treatments, hairdresser).
Wheelchairs3 specially adapted wheelchair cabins (Deck 3 = Superior cabin no. 307, no balcony, Deck 4 = Prestige Cabin no. 407 - with balcony and Deck 5 = Prestige Cabin no 509, with balcony) and lifts to all decks/areas.
Length: 142 metres. Passenger Capacity: 264 (200 in Antarctica). Built: 2011