Norway Summer Expedition Cruise from Hamburg (Itinerary 2)

Norway Summer Expedition Cruise from Hamburg (Itinerary 2)

Norway Summer Expedition Cruise from Hamburg (Itinerary 2)

Norway Summer Expedition Cruise from Hamburg (Itinerary 2)

Travel information 15 Days MS Otto Sverdrup
Departures
9 June 2023
4 August 2023
Price from
5590 €
Breakfast, lunch and dinner included

Departing from Hamburg, you’ll sail the spectacular Norwegian coast in summer, going up into the Arctic to the roof of Europe and back.  

Endless daylight under the Midnight Sun 

Norwegian summers are known for long days and short nights. In parts north of the Arctic Circle, the Midnight Sun blurs the line between day and night, illuminating the fjords and mountains at all hours. This is one of the best times to explore Norway’s rugged landscapes and take in the unique culture of its cities and towns. With a choice of two departure dates, you can experience Norway near the beginning or the end of this beautiful season. Whichever time you choose to travel during summer, you’ll be treated to the trip of a lifetime, and you’ll leave with a greater understanding of what the Norwegians call “friluftsliv”. 

Handpicked highlights of the Norwegian coast 

Your adventure will take you to spectacular landscapes along the Norwegian coast, such as the apple-orchard-lined Hardangerfjord and the Lofoten Islands, complete with idyllic fishing villages. Stand at the dramatic cliffs of North Cape and hike to the hole in Torghatten Mountain. Our ship size also allows us to bring you to places few ever get to see: the remote archipelago of Træna, hidden Fjærland and diverse ‘fairytale’ landscapes on the island of Senja.  

Norway Summer Expedition Cruise from Hamburg (Itinerary 2) Norway Summer Expedition Cruise from Hamburg (Itinerary 2)
  • Day 1
    Hamburg, Germany

    Your adventure begins

    Your comfortable expedition ship MS Otto Sverdrup will be ready and waiting for you in the port of Hamburg.  

    Once on board the ship, you’ll pick up your complimentary expedition jacket, settle into your cabin, explore the ship and attend a mandatory safety drill.  

    After the first of many sumptuous dinners and a welcome toast by the Captain, you’ll meet your expert Expedition Team. They are your knowledgeable lecturers, warm hosts, and good-natured guides throughout your journey. Many grew up and live in the places you’ll be visiting and are passionate about sharing their home with you. First and foremost though, they are there to keep you safe and well. They’ll be making it a priority to run through important health and safety aspects with you and your fellow guests.    

    Add an extra night in Hamburg before your expedition cruise and explore the maritime spirit of this Hanseatic, vibrant city during a guided city-tour.  

    As we exit the Hamburg channel we reach Cuxhaven where we will go alongside and celebrate the start of our journey to Norway. For hundreds of years German seafarers and emigrants leaving Germany have used the port of Cuxhaven. Join us for the ceremony where the expedition team will let you know all about the coming adventure in the land of the midnight sun. A local sea shanty performance will entertain us and the museum of the Hapag-Halle will give us a guided tour and a historical perspective on our journey.  

    • Included Ceremony with shanty performance and a visit of Hapag Hallen.
    Day 1
    Hamburg, Germany

    Your adventure begins

  • Day 2
    At sea

    Northbound to the fjords of Norway

    Enjoy a day at sea as we head north to the rugged Norwegian coastline. You’ll have plenty of time to de-stress, relax and really get into the mood for this expedition cruise. Admire the waves from MS Otto Sverdrup’s expansive Observation Deck, settle into a good book together with a freshly baked pastry from the Fredheim restaurant, or take full advantage of the gym and hot tubs.   

    You’ll also be invited to talks hosted by the Expedition Team who will happily share their extensive knowledge of Norway with you. Topics will change each day and often be relevant to the area you are sailing in. For instance, as we sail across the North Sea, well-known for its oil and gas reserves divided among the UK, Norway, Denmark, Germany and the Netherlands, the lecture subject, perhaps out on deck instead of the Science Centre, might well be about the geology of the North Sea.  

    These added insights will enhance your experience, filling out your sense of discovery with delicious detail.  

    We also support a number of Citizen Science projects that you can join. These projects include Happywhale where your photographs help identify and track whales across the planet. Or the Globe observer project which combines your observations of clouds and sky conditions from below with data collected by satellites.  

    Not only will you be supporting the scientific community, you’ll also be getting a better understanding of the world around you. 

    With calm seas and good weather conditions, we can expect to reach Lysefjorden the next morning.

    Day 2
    At sea

    Northbound to the fjords of Norway

  • Day 3
    Lysefjorden Norway

    Lysefjorden

    Early in the morning, we get our first glimpse of the Norwegian coast. Small islands and mountain silhouettes draw closer. We leave the North Sea behind and enter scenic straits and fjords. If weather conditions have allowed, we will start our visit of Norway in Lysefjorden, one of the country’s most beautiful fjords and a great place to begin our expedition.  

    We sail as deep as possible into imposing Lysefjord towards the iconic viewpoint at Preikestolen. Lysefjord is 40 kilometres long, up to 422 metres deep and boasts some of the most striking vertical cliffs of all the Norwegian fjords. Preikestolen, also known as Pulpit Rock, is perhaps the most famous tourist attraction in Norway and the popular subject of many social media posts. As we approach Preikestolen, we hope to be treated to a fine view of this incredible rock formation from below.  

    Day 3
    Lysefjorden Norway

    Lysefjorden

  • Day 4
    Fjærland, Norway

    The longest fjord of Norway

    In the morning we sail into Sognefjorden, nicknamed the ‘King of the Fjords’, as it is the longest and deepest fjord in Norway. Stretching 205 kilometres inland from the coast, we plan to cruise deep into the fjord to the tiny hamlet of Fjærland.   

    Only 300 people live here, and you go ashore to discover this idyllic village with many charming old buildings. Fjærland is a designated Norwegian Book Town, and picturesque second-hand book shops and stands can be found all over the small village. But Fjærland is not all about books.   

    This is also the place where Sognefjorden meets one of Norway’s best-known glaciers, Jostedalsbreen. It’s the largest glacier on the European continent and has several smaller glacier arms stretching out in many directions, including Bøyabreen and Supphellebreen.   

    This makes Fjærland a perfect place to learn more about how glaciers created the beautiful fjords of Norway, which makes a visit to the Norwegian Glacier Museum a perfect included activity of the day.   

    At the award-winning museum, designed by world famous architect Sverre Fehn, you’ll engage with hands-on exhibits that explain why glacier ice is blue and how the fjords were formed. You can even perform a few experiments with 1,000 year-old glacier ice and watch a panoramic film about Europe’s largest glacier.   

    • Included Fjærland: Understanding Norway’s Glaciers
    Day 4
    Fjærland, Norway

    The longest fjord of Norway

  • Day 5
    Coast of Helgeland

    Relaxing at sea

    Today you can spend time in the ship’s Explorer Lounge, soaking in a hot tub, or out on deck taking in the scenery when we sail through Helgeland county.   

    You are now at the halfway mark along Norway’s long coastline and we are approaching the Arctic Circle   

    The Expedition Team continues its onboard lecture series, sharing their vast knowledge and experience about the geography, culture and history of Norway’s long and varied coastline.   

    Day 5
    Coast of Helgeland

    Relaxing at sea

  • Day 6
    Træna Island, Norway

    'Friluftsliv’ in a little Hawaii

    In the morning, we sail along the coast of Helgeland with nothing but sky and sea ahead. In the distance, you can see mountains rise from the horizon. This is Træna, an archipelago of over 400 islands and islets right on the Arctic Circle. We plan to go on a scenic walk around the village of Husøya where most of Træna’s 454 inhabitants live. 

    Surprisingly, the community on the islands has a Nordic-Hawaiian vibe. There is a permanent outdoor photography exhibition, themed café, and even a local ‘Waikiki Beach’. 

    Similar to Hawaiians, Norwegians believe in the life philosophy of friluftsliv – a respect for nature and a love of the outdoors.  

    Being on an expedition with us is the best time not just to learn about this ideal, but to live it. And Træna is a perfect place for you to try a host of optional excursions.  

    Remember though that the sea can be rough any time of the year. If weather does not permit us to land this far out from the coast, we might take you to Svartisen Glacier instead, where you can join optional excursion hikes to the glacier and kayaking. At approximately 370 square kilometres, Svartisen is Norway’s second largest glacier after Jostedal Glacier. 

    We’ll cross the Arctic Circle in the evening and mark the occasion with a special ceremony. What that ceremony will be is something you’ll just have to be on board to find out!  

    • Included Træna Cultural Trail
    Day 6
    Træna Island, Norway

    'Friluftsliv’ in a little Hawaii

  • Day 7
    Tromsø, Norway

    Arctic capital for adventure

    Looking for Arctic adventure? Tromsø is the place to find it. Set far above the Arctic Circle, the Midnight Sun shines here from May 20 to July 22 and it never gets dark during the peak of the summer. There are lots of great hiking trails to explore and watersports around the harbour. You can join optional excursions like hikes with our Expedition Team, kayaking, boat trips and scenic bus tours.  

    Nicknamed the ‘Paris of the North’, Tromsø is a lively university city, with a large brewery and several microbreweries, and a selection of great restaurants specialising in fresh regional produce. It is also rich in Arctic history and culture. Our Expedition Team can share more with you about polar history and exploration in one of their lectures.  

    As the gateway to the Arctic, Tromsø was the starting point for many polar expeditions and provided a very welcome first stop on explorers’ return to civilisation. Visit the Polar Museum to learn more about the famous explorers and expeditions that have their origins in the city.  

    The angular Arctic Cathedral is a city landmark, featuring a striking, stained glass window. One of the main attractions is to ride the Fjellheisen cable car to the top of a 424-metre-high mountain. The summit provides fabulous views of the city, mountains and fjords. If you are curious about Arctic marine life, the Polaria Arctic Experience Centre is a family-friendly aquarium with fish and seals that inhabit the region’s polar waters.   

    • Included The Polar Museum
    Day 7
    Tromsø, Norway

    Arctic capital for adventure

  • Day 8
    Skarsvåg, Norway

    At the top of Europe

    We spend the morning today sailing through Arctic Norway. You’ll notice how the landscape and scenery is different from the Helgeland Coast. The climate is usually a tad cooler too. Relax on board, catch up on your journal, visit the gym or the Science Center. Today’s lecture topics focus on Norwegian history; learn about the country’s Viking past, the Pomor trade with Russia, or discover more about Troms and Finnmark county’s indigenous and semi-nomadic Sámi people.   

    After lunch we arrive in Skarsvåg, a small fishing village only a scenic bus ride away from the North Cape. You’ll now visit one of the northernmost points in Europe as part of an included excursion. The scenic bus ride passes small bays and tiny villages, then crosses a mountain plateau before arriving at spectacular North Cape.  

    At 71°N, it is just 2,100 kilometres away from the Geographic North Pole, with only the Svalbard Archipelago in between. Stand at the cliff’s edge and gaze out across the sparkling sea. The North Cape is the closest you may ever get to the top of the world. There’s the obligatory selfie at the Globe Monument to snap before visiting the North Cape Hall for several exhibits and a short film which chronicle the history of the cape.    You can also combine this included trip with other optional experiences on the rugged and remote island of Magerøya. A birder’s paradise, the island is home to hundreds of Sea eagles and other birds like Arctic skuas, northern fulmars, Brünnich’s guillemots that congregate in large numbers around the bird cliffs of Gjesværstappan, attracted to the nutrient-rich waters.  

    Back in Skarsvåg, enjoy a stroll by the pretty harbour, browsing the charming houses and church. The one shop in the village is also the local restaurant. It serves up king crabs all year round and also a traditional fisksuppe  made by the owner Heidi. It may well be the best fish soup we’ve ever tasted. Skarsvåg is the ship’s turning point and from here, we start our return trip southbound. 

    • Included The North Cape
    Day 8
    Skarsvåg, Norway

    At the top of Europe

  • Day 9
    Senja Island, Norway

    Microcosm of Norway

    Today, we dock at Senja, one of the most ruggedly beautiful and less-visited islands in Norway. You’ll be awestruck by the scenery on display here and understand why it made CNN travel’s list for ’10 of the world’s most beautiful islands’.   

    Senja is Norway’s second largest island but counts fewer than 8,000 inhabitants, most of whom are employed in fishing and aquaculture. The captain will decide on a location to drop anchor or a port where we can dock. Should the weather be rough on the coast side, we will seek more shelter in the bays or inlets.   

    Sometimes referred to as ‘Norway in miniature’, the island boasts diverse landscapes that seem to change in the blink of an eye. Senja’s northern coastline is characterised by lofty mountains plummeting straight into the sea, interspersed with isolated coves and sandy beaches that fringe crystal clear turquoise waters. Southern Senja is distinguished by rocky coastline and pine forests and is home to Ånderdalen National Park. The eastern side of Senja has gentler, more forgiving landscapes with rolling hills and birch forests.    One of the best ways to see the island’s many beautiful contrasting topographies is a road trip along the National Scenic Route in Senja. Setting off from a local village, we’ll take a guided coach tour along part of this route and see the magnificent, untamed coastal landscape of Senja. One piece of scenery that you'll be amazed by is the dark, jagged peaks of the Okshornan mountain range, which are aptly nicknamed ‘Devil’s Jaw’. 

    • Included Finnsnes - National Scenic Route in Senja
    Day 9
    Senja Island, Norway

    Microcosm of Norway

  • Day 10
    Reine, Norway

    Iconic island landscapes

    The approach to Lofoten is not to be missed as a formidable wall of mountains greets you. The islands here are unlike anything you’ve ever seen. The breathtaking scenery is a masterpiece of distinctive peaks, sheltered bays, untouched beaches, and paradisaic fishing villages.  

    We start the day by first sailing to Trollfjord, a narrow waterway where vertical mountain walls loom above you. At the Captain’s discretion and depending on weather conditions in the area, you might get to experience the ship ‘threading the needle’ as it sails into the fjord so close to the cliff walls that you’ll feel you could reach out and brush them. Once safely within the fjord, the ship will then turn 180° on the spot. You’ll be holding your breath again as it manoeuvres back out through the tight entrance. It is a thrilling experience that requires superb seamanship. Thankfully, our Captains have that in spades! 

    We’ll land in idyllic Reine in the afternoon. You may recognise it as one of the most photographed nature landscapes in Norway – and for good reason. Characteristic red fishing huts known as rorbuer dot the shoreline against a backdrop of granite peak clusters jutting out of the fjord. As part of an included activity, you’ll board a bus to the picturesque old fishing village of Å, a unique, historical attraction. Here, you’ll see well-preserved houses, a blacksmith, an old cod liver oil press, and a bakery which might be making a fresh batch of lefse cakes. The local museum explains how cod fishing has been key to establishing Norway into a country.  

    • Included Reine - The Fishing Village of Å
    Day 10
    Reine, Norway

    Iconic island landscapes

  • Day 11
    Brønnøysund, Norway

    The pierced troll’s hat

    In the morning, we’ll sail through Helgeland county and the thousands of islands of the lowland area. Pick out the peaks of the Seven Sisters mountain range, thought to be the bodies of seven troll sisters petrified by the sun’s rays at dawn.   

    Our goal for today is to explore famous Torghatten, a small mountain outside the town of Brønnøysund, only 258 meters tall, but with a distinctive hole straight through its centre. It is easily one of the most photographed places in Norway.  

    Geologists generally agree that the scientific explanation for the 30-metre-high, 25-metre-wide and 160-metre-deep hole in Torghatten is due to erosion during the last Ice Age. Local legend prefers something more fanciful. Norwegian folklore tells of the troll Hestmannen who was besotted with the fair maiden Lekamøya. When his advances were spurned, Hestmannen flew into a rage and attempted to kill Lekamøya with an arrow. Witnessing this, the troll-king of Sømna mountain threw his hat in the path of the arrow to protect Lekamøya. At the same time, the sun rose, turning everything to stone. Lekamøya herself is immortalised as a small mountain to the south of Torghatten. 

    If you’re feeling up for an adventure and keen to see the views, you can join the Expedition Team to hike up to the mountain’s hole. Want something less strenuous? There’ll be an alternative walk around the mountain on offer too. 

    • Included Hike Around Torghatten
    Day 11
    Brønnøysund, Norway

    The pierced troll’s hat

  • Day 12
    Ålesund, Norway

    Art nouveau architecture

    Welcome to the charming coastal city of Ålesund! The small city clutches to the shores of a thin island chain. Its waterfront buildings, once wharves and warehouses and now apartments, are painted in pastel yellows and reds. Join a guided walk of Ålesund through its cobblestone streets and admire the numerous spires, towers and highly-ornate buildings. Look closely and spot the variety of stone statues carved into the buildings 

    Due to a devasting fire in 1904, much of the city was rebuilt in the architectural style so fashionable at the time: Art Nouveau. The extensive project was partly funded by Kaiser Wilheim of Germany who enjoyed vacationing in the Sunnmøre region. He was such a fan that he is known to have visited Norway at least 22 times!  

    Approximately 20 master builders and 30 Norwegian architects educated in Trondheim and Berlin drew inspiration from all over Europe when designing the many buildings that still stand here today. 

    As Norway’s Fishing Capital, Ålesund is also the site of the Atlantic Sea Park, recently granted status as Norway’s first marine science centre. Built in the coastal landscape at Tueneset, you’ll find a spacious Humboldt penguin park and Europe’s biggest seal pool together with an underwater observatory. The park’s Otter Island is home to three sociable and adorable otters who go by the names of Nusse, Muffe and Pia.  

    There’s also a decent hike to the summit of nearby Mount Aksla, giving you views over the city and the other islands. Once you reach the top, you can refuel with an ice cream at the café. Or perhaps tuck into warm svele while here, a thick, crescent shaped pancake popular in these parts. For an added, bold Norwegian twist, add a slice of brunost, Norwegian brown cheese, so it melts in the middle.  

    • Included Climb Mt. Aksla
    Day 12
    Ålesund, Norway

    Art nouveau architecture

  • Day 13
    Rosendal or Sunndal, Norway

    Orchard-lined fjord

    The expedition lecture series continues, perhaps with a talk on glaciers or Norway’s climate, providing some background on the geology of the area you’re about to see. Just before lunch, the peaks of tall mountains will appear on the horizon. Between these peaks lie Norway’s world-famous fjords.   

    One such fjord is Hardangerfjord. The hillsides here are blanketed in the prettiest apple orchards in Norway which are loaded with ripening fruit come July and August. The region is understandably famous for its apple products, from jams and juice to its award-winning cider, which one wine critic described as “Nordic champagne”. We all know that there’s no taste that captures the spirit of outdoor life better than a refreshing glass of cider!   

    Today, we will explore either villages of Sunndal or Rosendal, depending on local conditions. From Sunndal, located close to the Bondhus Glacier, you can explore the area on a scenic hike or go kayaking with the Expedition Team as optional excursions.  

    With only 800 inhabitants, Rosendal is a small, charming village. The biggest attraction is the 16th century Baronial manor, famous for its beautiful rose garden and landscaped grounds, in full bloom in the summer months. Why not also stop in at one of the small cafés in the village and sample the delicious local produce?  

    Towards the end of the day, we depart Hardangerfjord and begin our journey south. It is sadly time to head back to Hamburg, leaving the fjords, islands, and eventually the Norwegian coast as a whole behind. 

    • Included Rosendal - Folgefonn Centre
    Day 13
    Rosendal or Sunndal, Norway

    Orchard-lined fjord

  • Day 14
    At sea

    Homeward bound

    It’s our final day at sea and the last full day of this memorable expedition cruise. As we cross the North Sea, you may spot seabirds and dolphins that like to follow the ship.   

    Relive your wonderful experiences of coastal Norway as you edit your photographs, share stories with fellow guests over drinks in the Explorer Bar, soak up the fresh sea air in the comfort of the hot tub or out on deck. Fill in any knowledge gaps in the Science Center as you chat with Expedition Team members. You might also like to join their expedition review with a slideshow of all the highlights.   

    Day 14
    At sea

    Homeward bound

  • Day 15
    Hamburg, Germany

    Special memories

    We dock in Hamburg during the early morning hours. After breakfast, it’ll be time to say a fond farewell to everyone on MS Otto Sverdrup who have made your expedition so special.   

    As you head ashore, you’ll take with you fantastic lifetime memories of Norway; wonderful fjords, impressive nature, fascinating towns and cities, and of course, all the friendly people you’ve met along the way.  

    Add an extra night in Hamburg and explore the maritime spirit of this vibrant Hanseatic city on a guided city-tour. 

    We hope you’ll join us for new adventures soon! 

    Day 15
    Hamburg, Germany

    Special memories

Departures

2023

  • January
  • February
  • March
  • April
  • May
  • June
  • July
  • August
  • September
  • October
  • November
  • December
June:
9.
August:
4.

What's included

Included in your voyage

Expedition Cruise  

  • Expedition cruise in a cabin of your choice 
  • Breakfast, lunch and dinner including beverages (house beer and wine, sodas, and mineral water) in restaurants Aune and Fredheim 
  • À la carte restaurant Lindstrøm included for suite guests 
  • Complimentary tea and coffee 
  • Complimentary Wi-Fi on board. Be aware that we sail in remote areas with limited connection. Streaming is not supported. 
  • Complimentary reusable water bottle to use at water refill stations on board 
  • German- and English-speaking Expedition Team who organise and accompany activities on board and ashore 
  • Range of included activities 

Onboard Activities 

  • Experts on the Expedition Team deliver in-depth lectures on a variety of topics 
  • Use of the ship’s Science Center which has an extensive library and advanced biological and geological microscopes 
  • Citizen Science program allows guests to assist with live scientific research 
  • Professional onboard photographer gives top tips and tricks for the best landscape and wildlife photos 
  • Use of the ship’s hot tubs, panoramic sauna, outdoor and indoor gyms  
  • Informal gatherings with the crew such as daily recaps and preparation for the day to come 

Landing Activities 

  • Escorted landings with small expedition boats  
  • Trekking poles, head lamps and walking poles available if necessary 
  • Complimentary wind and water-resistant expedition jacket 
  • Expedition Photographers help with your camera settings  

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   
  • Optional treatments in the onboard wellness and spa area  

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 
  • August 4 departure will visit ports in a different order 
Hjorundfjord, Norway MS Otto Sverdrup
MS Otto Sverdrup
Photo: Trym Ivar Bergsmo/Hurtigruten
Cabin M4
Photo: Espen Mills
Your ship

MS Otto Sverdrup

Year built 2002
Year of refurbishment 2020
Shipyard Kleven Verft (N)
Passenger capacity 526
Beds 554
Gross tonnage 15,690 t
Length 138.5 m
Beam 21.5 m
Speed 15 knots
Hjorundfjord, Norway MS Otto Sverdrup

MS Otto Sverdrup is designed for exciting, sustainable expedition cruises along the Norwegian coastline

Read more about MS Otto Sverdrup

Aune Restaurant
Photo: Espen Mills

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