Discover the historic & idyllic
Explore nine countries united by the Baltic Sea, discover their intertwined histories, and encounter fascinating cultures. Delve deeper through dramatic water approaches, foray into character-filled villages and island stops for quiet walks. Wander along the medieval walled city of Visby, explore dazzling St. Petersburg over two days, and dine on local specialties—or have a deck party in the tranquil Swedish Archipelago. Enjoy ample choices and avenues for exploration in each of the cities. And explore from a privileged vantage point—cruising the Baltic Sea by ship allows us to sail routes of the old Hanseatic League, in the paths of early traders and nobles, and it lets us enter the cities as they were meant to be—by sea.
Encounter a kaleidoscope of history and cultures
Though the countries we explore are linked by the Baltic Sea, each is distinctly unique. Fascinating Gdańsk in Poland, the mysterious Hill of Witches in Klaipeda, Lithuania and the finest collection of art nouveau buildings in beautiful Latvia. Turbulent histories come alive and the painstaking restoration efforts after WWII become all the more meaningful. The heritage found here is astounding and you will encounter many examples for the memory books.
It’s your expedition, you choose how to explore
How you spend your expedition time is vital to us. We want to bring you the best of these Baltic nations in the most engaging ways possible. Every day you can join naturalist or historian-guided hikes; or experiment with camera settings on a leisurely photo-focused walk. Meet the lively characters who make up the contemporary scene in towns along the way. Or simply enjoy the open decks and glorious views from National Geographic Explorer.
Travel with some of the best and brightest
The encyclopedic knowledge of our historians adds insight, depth, and clarity to each geography. Our naturalists will describe the geology of these rich coastlines, sharing their knowledge daily. If improving your travel photos is a passion, than we recommend you spend time with the National Geographic photographer and the Lindblad Expeditions-National Geographic certified photo instructor aboard ship and on walks ashore.
Arrive in Denmark's capital. Board National Geographic Explorer. Cruise the charming canals of this old maritime city. (L,D)
Lübeck, medieval capital of the Hanseatic League and its intact ensemble of step-gabled merchants’ houses, red-bricked warehouses and narrow alleys are protected as a World Heritage Site. Our Zodiac or walking tour will take us to Buddenbrockhaus, home of Lübeck’s famous sons, authors Heinrich and Thomas Mann. (B,L,D)
This morning will be an expedition morning on the small island of Christiansø, where you’ll have a chance to take a morning hike with our naturalists or photographer. This afternoon on Bornholm you may hike up to the cliff-top ruins of Hammershus fortress, explore the island’s round churches and white sandy beaches, or opt for a smoked herring tasting and a leisurely stroll around the fishing harbor. (B,L,D)
See Gdańsk’s art and architecture, including the Gothic-Renaissance Town Hall and National Museum. Visit the Westerplatte peninsula, where WWII began. See the European Solidarity Center. (B,L,D)
Explore the wild barrier peninsula called the Curonian Spit, a UNESCO World Heritage site shared by Lithuania and Russia. Learn of folk tales at the Hill of Witches and see some of Europe’s tallest sand dunes; spend the morning at the Ventė Cape Ornithological Station to explore the lighthouse and dunes while learning about migratory bird populations. (B,L,D)
Tour Riga’s wooden houses, art nouveau architecture, cafes, and the Central Market. (B,L,D)
Cross the Gulf of Riga to Estonia arriving in Tallinn this morning. You may choose to stroll the medieval streets of Town Hall Square on a guided walking excursion through the walled, cobblestoned Old Town with its Kiek in de Kök, a 15th-century defensive tower. Take in the view from Dome Hill of Tallinn’s picturesque spires and gables. (B,L,D)
Discover this dazzling gem over two days, including the renowned art collection of the Hermitage, the Peter and Paul Fortress, St. Isaac’s Cathedral, and the opulent royal palace and parks of Catherine the Great at Pushkin. (B,L,D)
Discover Finland’s intricate coastline with numerous bays, inlets, and islands rich with natural history and ripe for exploration by kayak and Zodiac. (B,L,D)
Cruise the Stockholm archipelago on your way from coastal Finland to Sweden’s beautiful capital. Keep your camera handy through the scenic archipelago to arrive in Stockholm, a city built on 14 islands. (B,L,D)
See the royal Vasa warship and stroll the streets of the Old Town. We stay docked overnight so you can enjoy this magical Scandinavian city. (B,L,D)
Enjoy a walking tour of the Viking city of Visby, wandering through its cobblestoned streets to the edge of the city’s stone walls. End at the Gotland Museum, where you’ll learn of the island’s fascinating history. Alternatively, opt to bike across the Gotland countryside with a local guide. (B,L,D)
Spend the day exploring the Southern archipelago of Sweden. (B,L,D)
Disembark ship this morning and transfer to flight. (B)
All day-by-day breakdowns are a sampling of the places we intend to visit, conditions permitting.
Main Deck with one or two Portholes #301-308
Main Deck with Window #317-320, 335-336
Main Deck with Window #313-316, 321-328, 337-340, 342, 344, 346, 348, 350 Triples: Main Deck with WIndow #341, 343
Upper and Veranda Decks with Window #103-104, 107-108, 201-202, 204-207, 210, 212, 217, 226, 228
Solo A Main Deck with Window #309-312, 329-334
Solo B Upper and Veranda Decks with Window #105-106, 203, 208
Upper Deck with Balcony #209, 211, 214, 216, 218, 220-222, 224
Veranda Deck–Suite #101-102; Upper Deck-Suite with Balcony #213 Triples: #101-102
Upper Deck–Suite with Balcony #215, 219, 230 All cabins are available as triples.
National Geographic Explorer
Vessel Type: Luxury Expedition
Length: 108 meters
Passenger Capacity: 148 (single & twin cabins)
Built / Refurbished: 1982 / 2008
National Geographic Explorer is a state-of-the-art expedition ship. It is a fully stabilized, ice-class vessel, enabling it to navigate polar passages while providing exceptional comfort. It carries kayaks and a fleet of Zodiac landing craft. An Undersea Specialist operates a remotely operated vehicle (ROV) and sophisticated video equipment, extending access to the underwater world.
Public areas: Bistro Bar; Chart Room; Restaurant; Global Gallery; Library, Lounge with full service bar and state-of-the-art facilities for films, slideshows and presentations; Mud Room with lockers for expedition gear, and Observation Lounge. Our “Open Bridge” provides guests an opportunity to meet our Officers and Captain and learn about navigation.
Meals: Served in single seatings with unassigned tables for an informal atmosphere and easy mingling. Menu is international with local flair.
Cabins: All cabins face outside with windows or portholes, private facilities and climate controls.
Expedition Equipment: Zodiac landing craft, kayaks, Remotely Operated Vehicle (ROV), hydrophone, SplashCam, underwater video camera, Crow’s Nest remote controlled camera, video microscope, snorkeling gear.
Special Features: A full-time doctor, Undersea Specialist, LEX Photo Specialist and Video Chronicler, Internet Cafe and laundry.
Wellness: The vessel is staffed by two Wellness Specialists and features a glass enclosed Fitness Center, outdoor stretching area, two LEXspa treatment rooms and Sauna.
• Voyage on board in selected cabin category
• All meals while on board
• Non alcoholic beverages
• Experienced expedition team and leader
• All excursions
• Zodiac and kayak exploration
• Snorkeling, including wetsuits, masks, fins & snorkel where relevant
• Lectures and presentations on board
• International and domestic flights unless otherwise stated
• Travel insurance
• Passport and visa costs if applicable
• Alcoholic beverages on board unless otherwise stated
• Gratuities unless otherwise stated
• Wifi on board
• Any items of a personal nature including laundry