On this voyage from Iceland to Greenland discover the immense scenic and cultural variety of the world’s largest island from the beautiful and fertile south with its fascinating Viking history and the modern capital of Nuuk in a traditional Inuit society to the town of Ilulissat with its floating icebergs and UNESCO World Heritage site, Ilulissat Ice Fjord. All these spectacles and more await your unforgettable journey aboard the OCEAN DIAMOND.
• Attempt to enter the 70-mile-long Prins Christian Sound which connects the Labrador and Irminger Seas
• Learn more about the lives of the early Norse settlers and visit the reconstructions of a Viking longhouse and small turf church in Narsarsuaq
• Enjoy the thunderous spectacle when icebergs break off from Sermeq Kujalleq glacier and plunge into the fjord
• Enjoy the Arctic summer and admire the contrast between majestic icebergs and the riot of colors ashore
Use your leisure time in Reykjavík to uncover the unique charm of the world’s northernmost capital or book one of our pre-programs for a unique Iceland experience. The OCEAN DIAMOND docks in Old Reykjavík Harbor in the heart of the city, a five minute stroll to the main squares, shopping and dining. The ship departs in the evening.
Located off Iceland’s south coast, the Westman Islands were formed by submarine volcanic eruptions around 10,000 years ago. Surtsey Island emerged from the sea in 1963 and is one the youngest land masses on earth. We go ashore on Heimaey, the only inhabited island, where half-buried houses remain from a violent 1973 eruption. During the shore landing there is time for bird watching and you might even spot whales.
Today we sail across the Denmark Strait towards Greenland, following the same maritime route used by Norse settlers more than 900 years ago. En-route you can attend fascinating presentations by our Expedition Team members to prepare for your visit to Greenland. Or of course, you can choose to just relax and watch whales, dolphins and seabirds from the deck of your cabin.
When conditions are favorable we travel along the 70 mile (112 km) long Prins Christian Sound which connects the Labrador and Irminger Seas. In this narrow, often ice-choked channel, we come so close to icebergs you can almost reach out and touch one. The force of Greenland’s massive, inland ice cap pushes glaciers towards the sea, where large hunks of ice break off and become floating icebergs.
Very close to the town of Narsarsuaq lies the small settlement of Qassiarsuk, founded by the legendary Viking rebel and leader Erik the Red. He named this area “green land” because the landscape around Qassiarsuk is characterized by inviting fjords and green, fertile valleys. During this stop you have the opportunity to learn more about the lives of the early Norse settlers and visit the reconstructions of a Viking longhouse and small turf church.
Today we visit Ikka Fjord. The underwater world is like no other, it contains a forest of remarkable mineral columns growing on the seabed. The columns formed over 10,000 years ago of the extremely rare mineral Ikait.
With 16,000 inhabitants Nuuk is both capital and biggest city of Greenland. It combines Arctic traditions with European urbanity. Visit the city sights on a walking tour that ends at the National Museum, which exhibits the famous mummies of Qilakitsoq.
With approx. 5,600 inhabitants, Sisimiut is the second largest town in Greenland. It is a modern settlement that maintains ancient traditions. The fishing industry still plays an important role. The natural harbor remains ice-free throughout the year which made it an attractive location for European whalers in former times.
In the morning we reach Ilulissat village in fabled Disko Bay. Ilulissat is located beside the Ilulissat Icefjord. Delight in the thunderous spectacle when icebergs break off from Sermeq Kujalleq glacier and plunge into the fjord. Sermeq Kujalleq is one of the most productive glaciers in the northern hemisphere. We spend the evening at the beautiful Eqip Glacier.
Uummannaq is considered one of the most beautiful towns in Greenland. Located on a small island about 300 miles (483 km) north of the Arctic Circle, this tiny, picturesque village lies at the foot of a heart-shaped mountain.
The small settlement of Qeqertarsuaq is located on the south coast off Disko Island. In 1773 the first whaling base was founded. Whaling has been of great importance to the town over the past two centuries. Hunting and fishing are still the primary occupations for the island's inhabitants.
In the morning we reach the 120-mile (190 km) Kangerlussuaq Fjord and the town of the same name. It’s time to say goodbye to the OCEAN DIAMOND. Take a look at our air&ground package for this tour to enjoy a comfortable journey home.
All routes and excursions are provisional and subject to change – weather, sea and ice conditions may affect the itinerary.
Size 19 m2. Cabin features: 2 twin beds and 1 upper bed, private bathroom with shower and bathtub, TV with DVD-player, wardrobe, safe, refrigerator, individual temperature controls, satellite telephone access, hair dryer, 2 portholes. Deck: Deck 3
Size 19 m2. Cabin features: twin or double, private bathroom with shower, TV with DVD-player, wardrobe, safe, refrigerator, individual temperature controls, satellite telephone access, hair dryer, 2 portholes. Deck: Deck 3
Size 19 m2. Cabin features: twin or double, private bathroom with shower and bathtub, TV with DVD-player, wardrobe, safe, refrigerator, individual temperature controls, satellite telephone access, hair dryer, picture window (the view is obstructed). Deck: Deck 5,6
Size 17-19 m2. Cabin features: twin or double, private bathroom with shower and bathtub, TV with DVD-player, wardrobe, safe, refrigerator, individual temperature controls, satellite telephone access, hair dryer, picture window. Deck: Deck 4, 5, 6
Size 30 m2. Cabin features: twin or double, private bathroom with shower and bathtub, sitting area, TV with DVD-player, wardrobe, safe, refrigerator, individual temperature controls, satellite telephone access, hair dryer, full-size window with a sliding glass door, balcony. Deck: Deck 7
Vessel Type: Expedition
Length: 124 metres
Passenger Capacity: 224
Built / refurbished: 1974 / 2012
The 224 passenger vessel was completely refurbished in Norway in 2012 and is perfect for our exploration being large enough to provide stability, speed, spacious cabins and ample public space, yet small enough to manoeuvre in remote areas. The vessel is outfitted with the most current navigational and communications technology as well as with retractable stabilisers for smooth sailing. The vessel is ice strengthened and features 18 Zodiacs for our forays ashore.
With a maximum of 224 passengers, the Ocean Diamond offers cabins across its five decks. There a range of cabins and suites available and all feature outside views (porthole, window or balcony), full private en-suite bathrooms featuring bathtub and shower, a writing desk, individual temperature control, in-room safe, refrigerator, satellite phone access, hairdryer and flat-screen television and DVD player. Cabins range in size from 17 square metres to 30 square metres.
The Ocean Diamond features spacious public areas and ample deck space from where you can admire the beautiful passing landscapes. Public areas and facilities include an observation lounge with bar, a fitness centre, pool with bar, sun deck, lecture threatre with state of the art audio visual equipment, library and lounge. The restaurant serves all passengers in one, open seating and cuisine onboard is international. There is also a gift shop, clinic and a spa onboard.
The single sitting restaurant is located on the Lower Deck and is both spacious and light. Breakfast and lunch are served buffet style and dinner is served to your table. All meals include a vegetarian option. Afternoon tea also served daily around the afternoon excursions and coffee, tea and water are available complimentary around the clock. Weather permitting, there will be the opportunity to dine outside on occasion.
The atmosphere onboard is focused on exploration and discovery with all the creature comforts you would expect from a vessel of this calibre. The onboard crew offer excellent service and in addition the expedition team will enrich your experience with their knowledge of the region. Through a lecture programme and shore expeditions, they will share their expertise and passion with you. After a day of exploration ashore, you will return to the comfort of a sophisticated ship with a friendly crew and informal atmosphere. A fleet of Zodiacs are used for landings and nature cruises, and during your voyage you will have the opportunity to visit the Captain and Officers on the Bridge to learn more about your journey, further fostering the expeditionary nature of our voyage.