Northeast Passage Eastbound: Shokalskiy

A epic 28 day expedition eastbound along Russia's fabled Northern Sea Route with the ice-strengthened small ship Akademik Shokalskiy

Be an active participant making history on this epic expedition across Russia's Northwest Passage, one of the greatest seaways in the world. Our vessel Akademik Shokalskiy is no stranger to this route having participated in a Soviet convoy in the late 1980s and more recently completed the journey unassisted. We invite you to join this historic journey which explores the history and development of the route and the many Arctic islands along the way.


Pre/Post cruise transfers, all on board ship accommodation with meals and all expedition shore excursions.


All items of a personal nature, laundry, drinks, gratuities. International/domestic flights, visas and travel insurance.
Local Payment $500.00 USD pp
Private charter flight to Nome from Anadyr $1300 USD

Please note

Deposits - Reservations require a deposit of 25% at the time you receive a booking confirmation from Expeditions Online. A payment link will be sent to you and this may be paid by major credit card. Bookings within 90 days of departure require full payment.
Final Payments - Balances are due 90 days prior to departure.
Cancellations - All requests for cancellation must be received in writing to Expeditions Online. Cancellations received 180 days or more prior to departure, are refunded less a $US750.00 per person administration fee. For cancellations received within 179 and 91 days of the embarkation date the full deposit will be forfeited. If cancellation occurs within 90 days prior to the departure date the total price is forfeited. If cancellation occurs within 90 days and full payment has not yet been received, the total price will still apply and any unpaid monies are due immediately. We strongly recommend that you obtain adequate trip cancellation insurance.
Booking Terms - Please read carefully the General Booking Conditions for Expeditions Online. This voyage is operated by Heritage Expeditions and you additionally travel under their terms and conditions as the operator as well as of the Shipping Company/transport carrier. Details will be forwarded to you at the time of booking.

Full itinerary

Day 1: Murmansk, Russia
Join the Akademik Shokalskiy this afternoon and depart. After sailing there will be introductions to ship and crew.
Days 2 to 3: Barents Sea
This sea is named in honour of Dutch Seafarer and navigator Willem
Barents who explored the region on two separate expeditions in 1594
and 1596. We will keep a look out for marine mammals and of course
Days 4 to 6: Franz Josef Land
This is a huge archipelago of 192 islands located only 10 degrees
from the North Pole. They were named in 1870 after the Hungarian
Emperor when they were discovered by the Austro-Hungarian
Payer-Weyprecht Expedition that was searching for the NE Passage.
During our time here we plan multiple landings in search of history,
wildlife and flora.
Days 7 to 8: Kara Sea
The Kara Sea is one of the coldest seas in Russia. It lies between
Novaya Zemlay, Franz Josef and Severnaya Zemlya Archipelago.
Days 9 to 11: Severnaya Zemlya Archipelago
The Severnaya Zemlya Islands are on the border of the Kara and Laptev
Seas and are an extension of the Taimyr Peninsula. The islands were
not discovered until 1914-15 by the Russian explorer Vilkitski. They
are heavily glaciated with deep fiords and majestic glaciers which
make them magnificent for cruising. There is also a great selection
and abundance of Arctic wildlife including Polar Bears, Arctic Foxes,
Arctic Hares and walruses.
Days 12 to 13: Crossing the Laptev Sea
This sea is bounded in the west by the Taymyr and the Severnaya
Islands and the Novosibirskie Islands in the east. Look out for the
Laptev Sea Walrus known only in this sea.
Days 14 to 16: Noviye Sebirskiye (New Siberian Islands)
These islands mark the border between the Laptev and East Siberian
Seas and consist of three major groups: Southern, Central (Anzhu) and
Northern (De Long) Group. The islands are virtually unexplored and are
uninhabited apart from the researchers at a couple of weather
stations. We will explore the islands with a number of landings in
search of Arctic flora and wildlife.
Day 17: East Siberian Sea
It was in this sea that the Jeannette, captained by George Washington
De Long, became stuck fast in ice, drifted and was crushed and sunk in
1881. Wreckage from the Jeanette was found in Greenland in 1884 giving
Nansen the idea for the now famous 1893-96 Fram Expedition.
Day 18: Medvezhyi Islands
There are no permanent settlements on these little known and seldom
visited islands. They are covered in tundra and known to have a good
population of Polar Bears.
Day 19: Ayon Island and Village
This island and village is home to a small group of Chukchi Reindeer
herders. We enjoy their hospitality and learn about reindeer herding.
Day 20: East Siberian Sea
This sea occupies the area between the Novosibirskie Islands and
Wrangel Island. Three of Siberia’s major rivers flow into it – the
Indigirka, Alazaya and the Kolyma. It was in this sea that the Soviet
vessel Chelyuskin with 111 people on board became trapped in ice and
sank in 1934.
Days 21 to 23: Wrangel Island
Wrangel Island is one of those islands that you have to visit to
appreciate. It is a Federal Nature Reserve of international
significance and importance and also a World Heritage Site. A lot of
its significance lies in the fact that it is a major Polar Bear
denning area. It is also the last landfall for migratory species
flying north. Each summer thousands of birds migrate here to breed,
including Snow Geese, Snowy Owls, skuas, Arctic Terns, Ross’s,
Sabine’s and Ivory Gulls.
Day 24: Kolyuchin Island
Early this morning we will pass close by the place where the Swedish
explorer Adolf Erik Nordenskiold wintered over in 1878. Later this
morning we plan to land on Kolyuchin Island, where there is an
abandoned Polar research and weather station and some great bird
Day 25: Cape Dezhnev and Uelen Village
Early this morning we will be at Cape Dezhnev, the eastern extremity
of the Eurasian continent. This afternoon we visit the nearby village
of Uelen. Here we enjoy the hospitality of the local people who are
predominantly Chukchi and enjoy a cultural performance and visit the
bone-carving studio.
Day 26: Whale Bone Alley and Gil’mimyl Hot Springs
We visit Whale Bone Alley on Yttygran Island, one of the most
significant and intriguing archaeological sites in the Arctic. This
afternoon we plan a landing at the Gil’mimyl Hot Springs.
Day 27: At Sea
Crossing the Gulf of Anadyr there will be opportunities for pelagic
birding, marine mammal watching and lectures.
Day 28: Anadyr
The expedition finishes in Anadyr. After a final breakfast it will be
time to disembark. There will be a complimentary transfer to the
airport or to a central downtown hotel.

Important Note: These expeditions are subject to approval from
various Russian Federal and Regional Authorities and may have to
change depending on these approvals. Permits have been lodged for
all the sites mentioned in the itinerary, depending on approvals
these may have to be amended or substituted. We will endeavour to
keep participants fully informed of any changes in the itinerary as
and when they occur.

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