From Norwegian Fjords to Iberian charm - Europe´s Atlantic Highlights

From Norwegian Fjords to Iberian charm - Europe´s Atlantic Highlights

From Norwegian Fjords to Iberian charm - Europe´s Atlantic Highlights

From Norwegian Fjords to Iberian charm - Europe´s Atlantic Highlights

Travel information 15 MS Spitsbergen
Departures
7 October 2023
25 September 2024
Price from
3490 €
Breakfast, lunch and dinner included

From Norwegian Fjords to Iberian charm - Europe´s Atlantic Highlights

Fjords and wild coasts 

From beautiful Bergen, your European expedition cruise will sail to Stavanger and stunning Lysefjord. Across the North Sea, we'll explore historical coastal towns including Hamburg, Harlingen and Oostende. Enjoy rugged scenery and pretty towns along the western seaboard from Normandy to A Coruña.   

Wildlife and culture 

Scout for whales, dolphins and porpoises in the Bay of Biscay. Discover UNESCO World Heritage Sites from the wonders of Galicia, Santiago de Compostela and Hamburg’s Speicherstadt, to Lisbon’s Belém Tower. You’re sure to savour delicious cuisine, wine and cultural heritage in Porto and Lisbon. 

From Norwegian Fjords to Iberian charm - Europe´s Atlantic Highlights From Norwegian Fjords to Iberian charm - Europe´s Atlantic Highlights
  • Day 1
    Bergen

    Your Expedition Begins

    Explore UNESCO-listed Bryggen and mountain peaks 

    Your journey starts in what was once Norway's capital, Bergen.   

    As you stroll through the cobbled streets and alleyways, why not visit the historic UNESCO-listed Bryggen district, with its colourful wooden wharfs, or the famous fish market, full of sights, sounds – and scents – to savour.  

    Ride the Fløibanen funicular, which has been transporting visitors to the summit of Mount Fløyen for over a century, and offers amazing views over this picturesque city and its colourful homes.     

    Pre-Programme  

    If you have extra time in Bergen, why not book our Pre-Programme and enjoy the incredible view over Bergen during a refreshing hike up Mount Fløyen.   

    Day 1
    Bergen

    Your Expedition Begins

  • Day 2
    Stavanger, Norway

    Explore lively Stavanger and striking Lysefjord

    Sail into striking Lysefjord with incredible views 

    Stavanger has an international ambience and a lively cultural scene. Discover the architectural relics of Old Stavanger, including a magnificent 12th century cathedral. You can also visit the Norwegian Petroleum Museum, pop into a local boutique or simply enjoy a beer on the waterfront.  

    Leaving Stavanger, we sail into Lysefjord to experience some of the most striking vertical cliffs of all the Norwegian fjords.  A five-hour guided hike will reward you with breathtaking views of Lysefjord from the 1,980 ft high Preikestolen viewpoint, famously known as ‘Pulpit Rock’.  

    Day 2
    Stavanger, Norway

    Explore lively Stavanger and striking Lysefjord

  • Day 3
    Sea day

    Crossing the North Sea

    Time to relax as we head to Hamburg 

    Exploration doesn’t end when you’re onboard; there’s plenty to see and do as we sail towards Germany. Why not work up a sweat in the gym, or relax in the sauna or hot tub.  

    Your Expedition Team will begin a series of lectures, offering unique insights into the history, heritage, and natural sciences of the places we’ll be visiting.  

    On deck, our biologists will help you scan the seas for wildlife. You can also pick up some useful tips from our onboard photographer. Or simply enjoy the scenery from the comfort of the Explorer Lounge & Bar.  

    Day 3
    Sea day

    Crossing the North Sea

  • Day 4
    Hamburg, Germany

    Historical Hamburg

    Explore Hamburg's architectual and cultural delights

    There's so much to see and do on your own in Hamburg. Visit the old floating dock of Landungsbrücken, see the old ships and yards, waterfront buildings, and the Old Elbe Tunnel. 

    You’ll find many attractions in the Altstadt district, including the St Nikolai Memorial, St Catherine's Church, City Hall and the historic street of Deichstraße. Art lovers will enjoy Kunsthalle, Germany’s foremost art museum.  

    Why not visit the world’s largest warehouse complex at Kontorhausviertel and Speicherstadt, which together with Chilehaus are UNESCO World Heritage Sites.  

    • Included Snapshot of Hamburg
    Day 4
    Hamburg, Germany

    Historical Hamburg

  • Day 5
    Harlingen, The Netherlands

    Harlingten's rich heritage

    Experience the Frisian port city of Harlington

    You can walk or bike around Harlingen, a city of canals and pretty harbours, and home to the last traditional pottery factory in the Netherlands. Harlingen lies on the shores of the Wadden Sea, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. 

    You'll find traditional sailing ships and historic warehouses around the old harbours of Noorderhaven and Zuiderhaven. Don’t miss the Harlingen Aardewerkmuseum to admire displays of distinctive Frisian pottery. 

    • Included Old Harbour Zodiac Cruise
    Day 5
    Harlingen, The Netherlands

    Harlingten's rich heritage

  • Day 6
    Oostende (Brugge), Belgium

    Explore Oostende and Bruges

    Rich medieval architecture among winding streets

    First a fishing village, then a medieval city, and later a royal seaside resort, the strategic port of Oostende is steeped in European history. Yet despite the ravages of war and time, many of its medieval features have survived to the present day.  

    It’s also a great base from which to visit Bruges. Lose yourself in this beautifully preserved medieval town, as you explore winding streets, picturesque canals and grand 14th century buildings. 

     

    • Included Bruges on your Own
    Day 6
    Oostende (Brugge), Belgium

    Explore Oostende and Bruges

  • Day 7
    Ouistreham, France

    Normandy past and present

    Discover historic beaches, Caen and WWII memorials

    Normandy has a fascinating history, from the Viking invasion to the D-Day landings in 1944. In Ouistreham, you'll learn about Operation Overlord at the Musée No 4 Commando.   

    Check out the German fortifications at Le Grand Bunker and visit the war cemetery at Hermanville-sur-Mer. Or why not stroll along the beautiful Beach of Riva Bella and stop at the 12th century St Samson Church and the 1905 lighthouse.   

    Afterwards, you'll explore the pretty town of Caen. The 11th century Romanesque church of Saint-Étienne, the Mémorial de Caen that commemorates WWII, and the Musée des Beaux-Arts de Caen are highlights not to be missed. 

    • Included The Battle of Normandy: Sword Sector
    • Included Shuttle bus to Caen
    Day 7
    Ouistreham, France

    Normandy past and present

  • Day 8
    Saint Malo, France

    The citadel of Saint-Malo

    A beautiful Breton town steeped in history

    Viewed from the sea, Saint-Malo is an impressive sight, fringed by fortified bastions and gently sloping beaches.  

    A circular walk along the ramparts offers the best views of the town and surrounding islands. Follow the historical trail within the old city walls through a maze of cobbled streets and visit Demeure De Corsaire to learn about the feared corsairs and the town’s pirate heritage.  

    You can even visit the Abbey of Mont-Saint-Michel or walk to Île de Grand Bé at low tide. The island has remains of an ancient fort and where the renowned local writer Chateaubriand is buried. 

    • Included Inside the Walls of St Malo
    Day 8
    Saint Malo, France

    The citadel of Saint-Malo

  • Day 9
    Douarnenez, France

    Fascinating Finistère

    Inspiring coastal scenery and maritime history

    We’ll use our small expedition boats to go ashore at the picturesque seaside town of Douarnenez, where you'll find the colourful quaysides, sandy beaches, and steep cliffs that inspired famous painters like Renoir and Boudin. As well as fishermen’s huts and seamen’s chapels, Douarnenez hosts a wonderful maritime museum with boats from around the world.  

    If conditions don’t allow a visit to Douarnenez, we’ll head to nearby Brest, a fascinating and historic city with many medieval fortifications. Here, you can visit the National Maritime Museum inside the military fortress of Château de Brest. It’s a modern city too, with lively quays and docks that are perfect for a scenic stroll. 

    • Included Brittany's Land’s End - Pointe du Raz
    Day 9
    Douarnenez, France

    Fascinating Finistère

  • Day 10
    At sea

    Sailing the Bay of Biscay

    Unwind and enjoy the natural world around you

    Today is a perfect day to relax on deck with your binoculars and watch for whales, dolphins and porpoises. This is one of the few places in the world where beaked whales can be seen – if you’re lucky – as they’re drawn to the nutrient rich waters of the bay.  

    You can also learn about the marine biology of the waters along our cruise, and join hands-on demonstrations and in-depth lectures about the history, geography, and environment of the destinations to come. And don’t forget the leisure facilities on board – why not try out the panoramic sauna?  

    Day 10
    At sea

    Sailing the Bay of Biscay

  • Day 11
    Ferrol, Spain

    Galician highlights

    See Galicia's heritage in Ferrol, Lugo and A Coruña

    Our first stop on the rugged Galician coast of Spain is Ferrol. Once a small fishing hamlet, for the past three centuries it’s been Spain’s main naval base. There are more forts, citadels and barracks here than any other harbour in the country.  

    A walking tour here will reveal its many historic highlights. You can also visit the old town of Lugo, famed for its Roman walls.  

    You'll then sail to neighbouring A Coruña and dock for the night. Here you’ll find the Tower of Hercules, the world’s oldest functioning lighthouse and a UNESCO World Heritage Site.  

    • Included Ferrol walking discover
    Day 11
    Ferrol, Spain

    Galician highlights

  • Day 12
    A Coruña, Spain

    Historic A Coruña

    Today you’ll have another opportunity to admire the Tower of Hércules before visiting the town of A Coruña for a true taste of Galician culture.  

    You’ll want to sample the unique Galician cuisine here. Ask for a selection of tapas and try a glass of local cider. In fact, it’s traditionally poured into a glass from high above it to introduce lots of air bubbles.  

    A Coruña is one of the starting points for the Camino de Santiago pilgrimage route. It connects to the Camino Inglés –  the ‘English Way’. From here, why not join a walk to its eventual destination, Santiago de Compostela. 

    Day 12
    A Coruña, Spain

    Historic A Coruña

  • Day 13
    Vigo, Spain

    The ancient port of Vigo

    The beautiful city of Vigo in the heart of Galicia

    Our cruise continues to Vigo, once the gateway to the Americas. Protected by the beautiful Islas Cíes, Vigo has one of the best natural harbours in Galicia and has become its main trading and fishing port. 

    Perfectly located for exploring the city on foot, you can visit the bustling Rúa do Príncipe with its eclectic mix of Neoclassical and Art Nouveau architectural styles. Or seek out the impressive 16th century Castro Castle and park.  

    On your way to the old town and Neoclassical cathedral, don’t miss the Rúa da Pescadería and sample some of the delicious seafood Galicia is famous for. 

    • Included Vigo Walking Discovery
    Day 13
    Vigo, Spain

    The ancient port of Vigo

  • Day 14
    Llençois (Porto), Portugal

    Charming Porto

    Explore the UNESCO-listed historic centre of Porto

    Arriving in Portugal, we dock at Leixões. From here, you can see the lighthouse of Leça, the Boa Nova Chapel, and the beautiful beach of Praia Azul.   

    You can take a shuttle bus to Porto – famed for its port wine and UNESCO-listed historic centre. An undulating city made for walking, you'll fall in love with the pastel houses, colourful tiled façades, street art, ornate churches and panoramic views across the Douro River.   

    Here, you can stroll along the bustling promenade by the Ribeira docks, cross the Dom Luís I Bridge, snack on delicious petiscos, and enjoy wine tastings at the port cellars of Vila Nova de Gaia. 

    • Included Porto walking tour
    Day 14
    Llençois (Porto), Portugal

    Charming Porto

  • Day 15
    Lisbon, Portugal

    Legendary Lisbon

    End your cruise in one of southern Europe's most enchanting cities.

    Your expedition draws to a close as we arrive at the Portuguese capital of Lisbon. 

    A tour of Lisbon's classical districts is essential – almost everything of historic interest is here. Start your exploration at the Praça do Comercio in Baixa and walk towards the narrow streets of Bairro Alto.  

    From there, you'll arrive at Alfama and the old Islamic quarter, the remains of the Roman amphitheatre and the Moorish fortress. If you’ve time, visit the UNESCO World Heritage Sites of Torre de Belém and Mosteiro dos Jerónimos, where you'll also find the delicious pastéis de Belém. 

    Post-Programme 

    We feel sure you’ll have had a great cruise discovering the fascinating history of the Atlantic coastline of Europe, but you don’t need to go home just yet. If you would like to explore Lisbon and its surroundings before you return home, we recommend joining our optional Post-Programme. 

    Not only will you see Lisbon’s fascinating historic districts, you’ll also explore the royal resorts outside the city, including the UNESCO town of Sintra, Monserrate Palace and the beaches of Cascais city during a guided excursion. Afterwards, you’ll return to Lisbon for an overnight stay. 

    Day 15
    Lisbon, Portugal

    Legendary Lisbon

Departures

2023

  • January
  • February
  • March
  • April
  • May
  • June
  • July
  • August
  • September
  • October
  • November
  • December
October:
7.

2024

  • January
  • February
  • March
  • April
  • May
  • June
  • July
  • August
  • September
  • October
  • November
  • December
September:
25.

What's included

Included in your voyage

Expedition Cruise 

  • A stay in a cabin of your choice 
  • Breakfast, lunch and dinner including beverages* in restaurant Aune 
  • Complimentary tea and coffee 
  • Complimentary Wi-Fi on board† 
  • Complimentary reusable water bottle 
  • English-speaking Expedition Team who organise and accompany activities on board and ashore 
  • Range of included activities 

*House beer and wine, sodas, and mineral water 

†Please note there is very limited Wi-Fi and phone signal in the remote areas we travel to, and streaming is not supported 

Onboard Activities 

  • In-depth lectures and discussions hosted by experts on the Expedition Team 
  • Full use of our Science Center, extensive library and advanced biological and geological equipment 
  • Citizen Science Programme where you can assist with ongoing scientific research 
  • Photography tips and techniques for capturing landscape and wildlife from our onboard professional photographer 
  • Use of ship's hot tubs, panoramic sauna and gym 
  • Informal gatherings with the crew for daily briefings 

Landing Activities 

  • Escorted landings with small expedition boats 
  • Loan of boots, trekking poles and all equipment for activities 
  • Complimentary wind- and water-resistant expedition jacket 
  • Expedition photographers on hand to assist you 

Notes 

  • All planned activities are subject to weather and ice conditions 
  • Excursions and activities are subject to change 
  • Please make sure you meet all entry and boarding requirements
  • No gratuities expected 

Not included in your voyage

  • International flights 
  • Travel insurance 
  • Luggage handling 
  • Optional shore excursions with our local partners 
  • Optional small-group activities with our Expedition Team 
MS Spitsbergen
Longyearbyen, Svalbard - MS Spitsbergen
Photo: Genna Roland
A group of people posing for the camera
Photo: Stefan Dall / Hurtigruten
Your ship

MS Spitsbergen

Year built 2009
Year of refurbishment 2016
Shipyard Estaleiro Navais de Viana do Castelo (POR)
Passenger capacity 180
Beds 243
Car capacity 0
Gross tonnage 7,344
Length 100.54m
Beam 18m
Speed 14.5 knots
MS Spitsbergen

MS Spitsbergen will take you on a voyage beyond the ordinary. She cruises along the Norwegian coast from September to May, and becomes part of our global Expedition sailings during the rest of the year.

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