Artic Cruises

If you are looking for a holiday that will take you well off the beaten track, there are few better choices than heading north on Arctic, Iceland and Greenland cruises.

The image you have in your mind when you think about cruises is likely to be of sunning yourself in the Caribbean or Mediterranean, but you will also find plenty to enjoy in the north Atlantic and Arctic oceans, including the fascinating city of Reykjavik.

Iceland’s largest city – the most northerly capital in the world – is packed with interesting sights, including the spectacular Hallgrimskirkja church, City Hall and Hofdi House, the scene of the crucial 1986 summit meeting between presidents Ronald Reagan and Mikhail Gorbachev.

You can also enjoy some peace and quiet on the shores of Tjornin, Reykjavik’s city centre lake, or take in the views over the capital’s brightly coloured traditional houses from the futuristic Perlan building.

Reykjavik is also a great place from which to explore Iceland’s glaciers, volcanoes, waterfalls and geysers. The island has a rugged landscape with unusual sights at every turn, so you won’t have to travel far from the capital to experience something new.

Thingvellir National Park is a great example of the spectacular countryside you can expect to enjoy during your call in Iceland, with its lava plain and mountains covered in wild flowers, moss and birch trees.

Iceland has a number of geothermal areas, where you will find warm mud pools and geysers. One of the most famous of these is the Strokkur – a spectacular geyser that sprays jets of steam and hot water 16 metres into the air every ten minutes.

Another geothermal-related attraction is the Blue Lagoon, a vast outdoor spa. It is filled with beautiful blue mineral-rich seawater that is ideal for bathing and swimming. The water, which has a temperature of 37-39C, is said to have healing properties, but even if you don’t have any ailments, you are certain to find it a relaxing experience.

Iceland is one of the best places to see a volcano close up and you will be able to arrange a trip to Eyjafjallajokull during your cruise liner’s stop in Reykjavik. If you want to make it an extra special experience, you could even book a helicopter tour that will take you to four different volcanoes.

If you are searching for something a little different for your next holiday, why not take a look at what Arctic, Iceland and Greenland cruises have to offer? To find the best voyages available get in touch with Fred Olsen Cruise Lines for full details. Several cruise lines depart from southampton, to iceland and the artic, see www.cruises from southampton.uk for information

Holidays in Iceland

The little European country is renowned as the country of fire and ice. It is situated between the mainland of Europe and Greenland. The capital city is Reykjavik.

Iceland is taken as the destination for lovebirds; there is folklore in Iceland, “if you have initiated your love in Paris then come Iceland to put the fire in it’. Home to numerous active volcanoes which have shiny ice caps; Iceland is inhabited by almost 0.3 million people who are spread around the coastal and urban areas of the country.

Iceland is a natural bequest as it has received a uniquely diversified geology. Its icecaps are the largest after Antarctica and Greenland and it is replete with hot water geysers, which offers panoramic view. Tour to Iceland is quite haute among young exhilarators nowadays. Comprised of fire and snow, the geologically young country calls you to enjoy the perfect blend of natural contrast.

It is considered as a paradise for hikers. National Parks and Conservation Areas around Iceland are quite appealing. Summers are supposed to best to spend holidays in Iceland. A holiday in Iceland can tempt you with numerous activities including Horse riding, fishing, sea-angling, water-rafting, kayaking, canoeing, snowmobile ride and many more.

A vacation in Iceland promises spectacular sightseeing, fascinating tours and unparalleled ambiance. Iceland is popular year-round but the tour season is primed in the summer from the beginning of June until the end of August. This is when tourists can get to the highlands where the vistas and landscape are truly spectacular. Traffic to the highlands declines noticeably by September but most tourist attractions are open and busy. Visitors will be surprised at what a great travel location Iceland is. The country is reaching out to tourist and vacation trade and is extending great hospitality to travelers.

  • Seeing is believing! 603 miles from Norway, Iceland’s topography and jagged coastline is truly spectacular. With a clear, buoyant environment, every day will reveal stunning landscapes and natural and man-made wonders that do not exist any other place.
  • A trip around the circumference of Iceland includes an unforgettable 831-mile trip on the Ring Road. You will see the crystal clear lakes, black sand beaches, incredible cliffs, glaciers, innumerable waterfalls, volcanoes and Geyser, the most spectacular spouting spring in Europe.
  • Iceland is a lifestyle and culture that is totally unique and prides itself on its quirkiness. There is no word for please in native language. In a recent survey, 20 percent of the population said they still believed in elves. This may be the only place on earth that has modern-day conveniences in a society that is both charming and ruggedly sophisticated.
  • While the social activities may be unsophisticated, the cuisine is unparalleled. Seafood dishes are fresh and exotic. Regular seafood dishes include Asian crab legs, cod, sushi, lobster and “Plokkfiskur” and rarities such as whale, puffin or foal. Popular red meat delicacies include free range lamb and the lamb hot dog, the most popular meal on the island.
  • You are always safe in Iceland. You cannot help but notice how cars are left with keys in the ignition, where baby carriages rest outside restaurants day and night. Even the occasional petty crime is rare and is usually the result of celebrating a little too vigorously. Iceland respects its guests and does everything to please them.
  • Duty-free shopping. Iceland features great tariff-free shops of all homemade goods as well as international designer goods. The brave and striking structural designs appeal to the more formal evening hours where gusts and natives dress up in the evening.

Best Places to See the Northern Lights

he northern lights, aurora borealis, are an incredibly amazing display of nature, which can only really be appreciated in person. Photos do not do them justice. There are several countries in which it is possible to see the northern lights, and the ‘best’ of these is often argued. Clarity, brightness and awe-inspiring value of the lights is dependent almost completely on the time of year, weather and several other environmental factors. This can be another hurdle in deciding where to go. Here, we will clear up some of the confusion on where to go and present three of the best possible holidays for you so see the lights.

Norway

In January, the arctic town of Tromso in northern Norway is easily one of the best places for a northern lights holiday. Situated over 300km inside the arctic circle, the aurora borealis are viewable between 6pm and 1am every second day at the very least. For most of the month, Tromso lies in complete darkness as the sun never breaks the horizon. The biggest attraction of seeing the auroras in Tromso in January is the northern lights festival, held in honor of the lights, and to celebrate the first dawn of the year. It is also host to a variety of international music and boasts an awesome party atmosphere. This alone makes Tromso an excellent choice for you to see the northern lights. Even if the festival and party life isn’t your scene, Tromso still stands at the forefront of aurora holiday destinations.

Canada

On almost the opposite side of the world, Canada provides another amazing place to see the northern lights. A one hour each way snowmobile ride north of Lake Superior, Ontario, offers yet another awesome display of the lights. Similar to Tromso, this is one of the coldest options for your trip, so be sure to pack your thickest and warmest gear! It is definitely not recommended to attempt the snowmobile ride yourself, especially if you have never lived in the area or experienced similar climates. Fortunately this doesn’t affect your trip, as you can easily seek professional guidance. There are several tour operators in the area that do just that. Be sure to look around for the best deals.

Iceland

The city of Reykjavik in Iceland is our final contender for the best place to see the northern lights. From the city itself, displays are not as spectacular due to the amount of street lighting affecting the view. Not to worry, further out of the city you can see the lights perfectly. Once again there are several operators in the area offering their professional guidance and expertise. The best part is that you are still close to all the city action. Iceland is situated in one of the most active areas of the Aurora Ovals – where the northern lights are formed. As long as there is clear sky, the lights are almost always visible.

While we believe these are among the best places in the world to see the northern lights, there are quite a few other options. These include Sweden, Finland, Lapland, and Alaska. If you can’t seem to arrive at a conclusion, there’s no reason not to see them twice, or more, considering most places have an abundance of other activities including dog sledding, skiing and much more. What better time to start organizing your northern lights holiday.