ultramarine northwest passage cruise

Northwest Passage: In the Footsteps of Franklin

  • Overview

    EARLY BIRD OFFER: Save 10% OFF + 10% When paid in full by 31 MAR 2021.

    Winding your way through the icy channels of the legendary Northwest Passage is history brought to life. On this compelling 17-day journey aboard our game-changing new vessel Ultramarine, passengers retrace the steps of the intrepid Franklin Expedition, which left the shores of England in 1845 in search of the last unexplored section of the Northwest Passage—only to become permanently icebound. Its discovery more than a century and a half later was a much-celebrated moment in polar history.

    On Ultramarine, guests benefit from two twin-engine helicopters that will provide spectacular aerial views of the Arctic landscape, the most extensive portfolio of adventure options in the industry, more outdoor wildlife viewing spaces than any other expedition ship its size, and 20 quick-launching Zodiacs to get you closer to ancient glaciers, dramatic fjords and towering icebergs. Explore colorful Greenlandic villages, and shop for traditional Inuit handicrafts. Hike the endless Arctic backdrop and marvel at the vast, colorful tundra. Keep your eyes peeled for the elusive and majestic creatures that make their home in this wilderness, such as whales, walrus, muskoxen and polar bears. Come aboard Ultramarine, follow in the footsteps of Franklin’s legendary Arctic voyage, and return home with memories to last a lifetime.

    IMPORTANT VOYAGE INFORMATION: This voyage has a mandatory charter flight component with an additional cost.

    Duration: 17 days
    Passengers: 199 passengers
    Embarkation Point: Toronto, Canada
    Disembarkation Point: Toronto, Canada
    Physical rating: Soft Adventure
    Fly/Cruise: Mandatory extra flight
    Single Supplement: 2.0x twin rate or share options
  • Itinerary
    • Day 1 - Arrive in Toronto, Canada

      Your Arctic expedition begins in Toronto. Explore this vibrant city on your own before spending the night enjoying the comfort and amenities of your designated hotel.

    • Day 2 - Fly to Kangerlussuaq, Greenland and Embark

      After breakfast, board your charter flight to Kangerlussuaq, a small community nestled deep inside a 118 mile (190 km) long fjord. Enjoy your first Zodiac ride as you’re transferred from shore to ship. Out on deck, take in your new surroundings before you set sail on your Arctic adventure.

    • Day 3/4 - Exploring West Greenland

      Cruising around the remote regions of Greenland and the Canadian Arctic aboard Ultramarine, the newest ship in our fleet, you’ll navigate the same icy inlets, channels and bays that fascinated legendary explorers of long ago. Designed to give polar adventurers unprecedented access to the hardest-to-reach places on the planet—and equipped with two onboard twin-engine helicopters for unparalleled access to areas only Quark Expeditions can bring you—this one-of-a-kind ship will take you beyond the familiar in polar exploration. Throughout your journey, your Expedition Team will keep an eye toward immersing you in the best the Arctic has to offer at the top of the world. Locals call Maniitsoq the Venice of Greenland, as it’s situated in an archipelago intersected by natural canals. Soaring, snow-capped mountains surround the small, rocky town, whose name means “the uneven place.” Playful humpback whales spend summer in the waters around here. The Greenlandic capital of Nuuk is a haven for history and culture lovers. See for yourself the unique and thriving culture of contemporary Greenland that mingles the ancient with the modern in surprising and wonderful ways. Stroll down to the waterfront to see the Hans Egede Church and Hans Egede statue, named for the missionary who established the settlement in 1728. Marvel at the famous remains of 500-year-old fully dressed mummies, discovered under a rock outcrop in 1972 by two brothers out hunting, at the Greenland National Museum. The Nuuk Art Museum and Katuaq Culture Centre are also worth visiting.

    • Day 5 - Cruising

      Say goodbye to Greenland’s shores as you traverse the Davis Strait in pursuit of the Canadian Arctic. Presentations by on-board experts will prepare you for the adventures that lie ahead.

    • Day 6/15 - Exploring Canada's High Arctic

      Visit towering fjords, historical sites and Inuit communities as you follow in the footsteps of famous explorers from long ago in the Canadian High Arctic. The picturesque Inuit hamlet of Pangnirtung is nestled beneath the jagged peaks of Mount Duval. An artist’s hub, Pang is renowned for its traditional Inuit arts and crafts, especially lithographs and intricate tapestries. At the Uqqurmiut Centre for Arts & Crafts, watch craftspeople in the tapestry studio if they’re working and pick up a limited-edition print. A must for visitors, a colorful Pang hat will keep you warm during the remainder of your Arctic voyage. You might visit nearby Kekerten, an uninhabited island that was a major whaling destination in the 1800s. At the southern tip of the Cumberland Sound, Cape Mercy was named by British explorer John Davis (yes, he of the Davis Strait), who sailed through it in 1585. This is the site of an old Distant Early Warning Line installation, dating back to the Cold War. These and many other stations were set up to detect Soviet bombers. It’s an ideal spot to go ashore for a hike. As icebergs travel down the Davis Strait, they’re naturally trapped at Qikiqtarjuaq (formerly known as Broughton Island). The icy waters here are also home to ring and harp seals. A hike up to the hilltop inuksuk rewards with spectacular views of the community. Inuksuks are stone figures or cairns that traditionally call attention to the location for navigation, abundant harvesting or spiritual significance. Cruising further north along the mountainous east shore of Baffin Island, we’ll approach Isabella Bay, an important summer and fall feeding area for the largest concentration of bowhead whales in Canada. Bowheads are a truly a remarkable arctic leviathan that research has revealed may live more than 200 years of age - the oldest mammal. At the northern tip of Baffin Island, near the eastern entrance to the Northwest Passage, is the Inuit hamlet of Pond Inlet, surrounded by scenic mountains, fjords, glaciers and icebergs. Many in the community still follow a nomadic lifestyle and hunt for their food. At the top of Baffin Island sits Lancaster Sound, a true arctic oasis. Known by the Inuit and their predecessors for thousands of years, this channel and the surrounding lands are extremely rich in wildlife and history, both indigenous and European. The area around Lancaster Sound affords several hiking opportunities. At Dundas Harbour, on Devon Island, you’ll visit an abandoned beachside outpost of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police. At nearby Croker Bay, cruise in a Zodiac (at a safe distance) along the face of an actively calving glacier. Your Expedition Team will also keep its eyes peeled for walrus that are known to visit the bay. Farther west, some of the best ancient Thule remains in the Arctic are at Radstock Bay, beside the soaring Caswell Towers. At the western end of Devon Island, the windswept Beechey Island is steeped in history. Named after famed British explorer Frederick William Beechey, it’s a Canadian National Historic Site. You’ll visit the small marked graves of three crew members who died during Sir John Franklin’s tragic 1845–46 expedition. Over 150 years later, Roald Amundsen landed here in 1903, during the first successful voyage by ship through the Northwest Passage. Sailing down the east coast of Somerset Island, you may be fortunate to spot beluga whales and if you’re very fortunate, narwhals, as they feed at Creswell Bay. An Important Bird Area, the bay also attracts such species as black-bellied plovers, king eiders and white-rumped sandpipers. You’ll also have time to explore Fort Ross, where the Hudson’s Bay Company established a now-abandoned trading post in 1937. At the midpoint of the Bellot Strait, the narrow channel that separates Somerset Island from mainland North America, you’ll reach the northernmost area of the continental landmass, Zenith Point.

    • Day 16 - Disembark in Resolute, Canada and Fly to Toronto

      After disembarking in Resolute, you’ll be transferred to your charter flight to Toronto, where you’ll spend the night at your included hotel.

    • Day 17 - Depart Toronto

      Today, make your way to the airport to catch your homeward flights, or spend the day exploring this fascinating city.

    Please consider that our voyages are expeditionary in nature. This means, that there are no concrete itineraries, your captain and expedition leader will utilise their vast experience to chart the best course for your expedition depending on the climatic and environmental conditions. Mentioned highlights and wildlife cannot be guaranteed.

  • Highlights & Activities

    Flightseeing

    While polar landscapes are spectacular from the sea, they’re even more stunning from the air, a view you can enjoy while seated in one of the two twin-engine helicopters stationed on Ultramarine. Typically in groups of 7 to 9, you will experience an unforgettable aerial tour of the Arctic during a 10- to 15-minute flightseeing excursion that’s included in the cost of the voyage. Additional helicopter activities may also be available for purchase onboard. Please note: all helicopter operations are weather- and logistics-dependent.

    Included

    Heli-Landing

    You will be transferred from Ultramarine’s heli-decks via our two twin-engine helicopters to a pre-selected Arctic destination. You’ll have time to explore the location, accompanied by team members, after which you’ll be picked up by the helicopters in the same location and returned to Ultramarine. Note: heli-landings are dependent on weather conditions and logistics.

    Included

    Hiking

    There are options on most excursions for shorter walks, often to take advantage of excellent lookouts, that don’t require hiking boots and other equipment. Hiking participation is optional and your Expedition Team will advise you of what you can expect prior to each excursion.

    Included

    Kayaking

    Kayaking is probably one of the most intimate and inspiring ways you can explore the rugged coastlines and calm bays of the Polar regions.

    Kayaking in the Polar Regions is highly weather-dependent, however we guarantee at least one outing throughout your voyage, but your kayak guides will take you out as many times as possible throughout your voyage.

    USD$ 630 per person

    Transfer Package (Mandatory): NWP

    MANDATORY TRANSFER PACKAGE INCLUDES: NWP

    - One night’s pre-expedition airport hotel accommodation in Toronto
    - Group transfer from the Toronto hotel to the airport
    - Charter flight to or from Toronto to Resolute
    - Group transfer from the Resolute airport to the ship on embarkation day
    - Group transfer from the ship to the Kangerlussuaq airport on disembarkation day
    - Charter flight to or from Kangerlussuaq to Toronto
    - One night’s post-expedition airport hotel accommodation in Toronto

    USD$ 2,706 per person

    Northwest passage

    There is a sea passage through the Arctic regions of North America, that has been alluring explorers and fortune seekers for centuries. Connecting the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans, the Northwest Passage, that has claimed the curiosity, hearts and lives of so many, is now a journey into the past to discover the courage, misery and pure determination of some of history’s greatest explorers. By weaving your way through explorer over-wintering sites, ceremonial grounds, and ship graveyards this remarkable journey will bring to life the endeavors of those who came before us.

    Explore Greenland

    Vast swaths of beautiful, unfenced wilderness give you unique freedom to wander at will, whether on foot, by ski or by dogsled.

  • Inclusions
    Inclusions / Exclusions

    Included in your Expedition

    - Leadership throughout your voyage by our experienced Expedition Leaders, including shore landings and other activities
    - All Zodiac transfers and cruising as per the daily program
    - All shore landings as per the daily program
    - Shipboard accommodation with daily housekeeping
    - All meals, snacks, soft drinks and juices on board throughout your voyage (Please inform us of any dietary requirements as far in advance as possible. Unfortunately, the ships’ galleys cannot prepare kosher meals.)
    - Select beer and wine during dinner; and coffee, tea and cocoa available around the clock
    - Formal and informal presentations by our Expedition Team and guest speakers as scheduled
    - A photographic journal documenting the expedition
    - A pair of waterproof expedition boots on loan for landings and Zodiac cruising excursions
    - An official Quark Expeditions® parka to keep
    - Hair dryer and bathrobes in every cabin
    - All miscellaneous service taxes and port charges throughout the program
    - All luggage handling aboard the ship
    - Emergency Evacuation insurance for all passengers to a maximum benefit of USD $500,000 per person
    - Greenland voyages cruise passenger tax
    - One night’s pre-expedition hotel accommodation in Toronto
    - Group transfer from the Toronto hotel to the airport on Day 2
    - Charter flight from Toronto to Kangerlussuaq
    - Group transfer from the Kangerlussuaq airport to the ship on embarkation day
    - Group transfer from the ship to the Resolute airport on disembarkation day
    - Charter flight from Resolute to Toronto
    - Group transfer from Toronto airport to hotel
    - One night’s post-expedition hotel accommodation in Toronto

    Not included in your Expedition

    - International airfare
    - Arrival and departure transfers in Toronto
    - Passport and visa expenses
    - Canadian eTA required for non-Canadian or U.S. visa-exempt passengers
    - Government arrival and departure taxes not mentioned above
    - Meals ashore unless otherwise specified
    - Baggage, cancellation, interruption and medical travel insurance—strongly recommended
    - Excess-baggage fees on international and domestic flights
    - Mandatory waterproof pants for Zodiac cruising, or any other gear not mentioned
    - Laundry, bar and other personal charges unless specified
    - Phone and Internet charges (connectivity may vary by location)
    - Voluntary gratuity at the end of the voyage for shipboard staff and crew
    - Additional overnight accommodation
    - Adventure Options not listed in Included Activities
  • Map
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  • Gallery
  • Vessel

    One of the newest ships in the polar fleet, Ultramarine, is designed to go beyond the familiar in polar exploration, to discover new places, and to immerse you in the best the region has to offer.

    Equipped with two twin-engine helicopters, Ultramarine offers the most robust portfolio of adventure activities in the industry, the most spacious suites in its category, breathtaking public spaces, and more outdoor wildlife viewing spaces than other expedition ships its size. It also features an innovative mix of sustainability features that exceed all industry standards.

    With all this and more, Ultramarine is set to deliver the ultimate polar expedition experience.

    Features & Facilities
    Key Facts
    Luxury star rating: 5
    Guests #: 199
    Crew #: 140
    Ice Class: PC6
    Speed: 16
    Refurbished:
    Technical Specs
    Year built: 2021
    Length: 128m
    Width: 22
    Draft: 5
    Tonnage: 13500
    Registry:
    Elec Outlets:
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Ready to book your expedition?

We understand that the trip of a lifetime takes planning, so we make the financial commitments easy to manage.

  • Confirm your booking today with just USD$ 1,000 per passenger.
  • Pay your 25% deposit 5 day later.
  • Final payment due 120 days prior to departure.
ultramarine antarctica explorer triple cabin

Explorer Triple

30 Jul 2023 - 15 Aug 2023
Located on Deck 3, and approximately 285 sq. ft. (26.5 m2). This suite is perfect for guests traveling solo who want to share their experience with other like-minded travelers of the same gender, or for groups of three traveling together. Featuring three separate single beds, and amenities for each of the three guests. Features: three single beds (two of which can be combined into a double bed), sitting area, picture window, desk, refrigerator, TV, private bathroom with shower and heated floors
USD$ 18,876pp
USD$ 18,075pp

Explorer Suite

30 Jul 2023 - 15 Aug 2023
View window, sitting area, twin/queen bed and private facilities
USD$ 24,222pp
USD$ 12,996pp
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Balcony Suite

30 Jul 2023 - 15 Aug 2023
Twin or double bed, private facilities, window and private balcony
USD$ 26,136pp
USD$ 13,905pp
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Deluxe Balcony Suite

30 Jul 2023 - 15 Aug 2023
Twin or double Suite with separate sitting area, private facilities and a private balcony
USD$ 30,492pp
USD$ 15,974pp
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ultramarine antarctica terrace suite cabin

Terrace Suite

30 Jul 2023 - 15 Aug 2023
Located on Deck 6, with approximately 350 sq. ft. (32.5 m2) of indoor living space, and a 100 sq. ft. (9.3 m2) balcony. This suite is perfect for guests wanting generous interiors with a wide layout and the largest balconies on the ship. Centrally located on Deck 6, guests will enjoy minimal movement and motion from the comfort of these suites. Features: one double or two single beds, sitting area with sofa bed, private extra-wide balcony, desk, refrigerator, TV, private bathroom with shower, bathtub and heated floors.
USD$ 31,482pp
USD$ 16,444pp

Penthouse Suite

30 Jul 2023 - 15 Aug 2023
Suites with private balcony and sitting area
USD$ 32,934pp
USD$ 17,134pp
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ultramarine antarctica solo panoroma cabin

Solo Panorama

30 Jul 2023 - 15 Aug 2023
Located on Deck 6, and approximately 132 sq. ft. (12.3 m2). This suite is perfect for solo guests who appreciate privacy and want to wake up to sweeping views from the comfort of their bed. These are the only solo suites with floor-to-ceiling windows available onboard any ship in its class. Features: single bed, floor-to-ceiling window, desk, refrigerator, TV, private bathroom with shower and heated floors
USD$ 32,934pp
USD$ 31,430pp
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polar pioneer captains suite

Owner's Suite

30 Jul 2023 - 15 Aug 2023
Suite cabin with double bed, separate sitting room and private facilities.
USD$ 41,184pp
USD$ 21,053pp
ultramarine antarctica ultra suite cabin

Ultra Suite

30 Jul 2023 - 15 Aug 2023
Located on Deck 6, with approximately 563 sq. ft. (52.3m2) of interior living space, and a 46 sq. ft. (4.3 m2) balcony. This suite is perfect for guests who want to travel without compromise. Our largest and most luxurious suite features the most sleeping, entertainment and storage space onboard the ship. It is perfect for families or travelers who want all the comforts of home onboard the ship. Features: one double or two single beds in a private bedroom with walk-in closet, sitting area with sofa bed and additional walk-in hallway closet, private balcony, desk, refrigerator, TV, private bathroom with shower, bathtub and heated floors and separate powder room.
USD$ 45,540pp
USD$ 23,122pp