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Wrangel Island Expedition

Wrangel Island Expedition

From USD $15,995

Description

Set sail from Nome, Alaska, for Russia’s most remote and treasured wildlife sanctuaries, Wrangel Island Nature Reserve. Discover the world’s highest concentration of polar bear dens (home to both parents and cubs), the largest population of Pacific walrus, nesting grounds for 100 migratory bird species including snowy owls, snow geese and long-tailed skuas; and reindeer, musk oxen and arctic fox. Having escaped glaciation during the last Ice Age, Wrangel Island is a bonsai garden of some 400 plant species and boasts a human history as spare and dramatic as the land. Explore the Chukotka coast, where beluga, gray and humpback whales feed, and experience traditional Chukchi life before returning to Nome.

Trip Name
Wrangel Island Expedition
Days
16
Overview
Vessel Type: Luxury Expedition Length: 104 meters Passenger Capacity: 126 Built / Refurbished: 2020/2021 Due to sail in October 2021 our new ship honours the highly accomplished marine biologist, oceanographer and explorer, Sylvia Earle. As the first female chief scientist of the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, and named by Time Magazine as its first Hero for the Planet in 1998 – this vessel pays tribute to Sylvia’s long standing conservation efforts for marine protected areas and ocean wildlife. Sylvia Earle will be actively involved in the development of her namesake. Designed for rugged, remote areas Crossing the notorious Drake Passage or the Denmark Strait, our expeditions face some of the most intense conditions nature can throw at us. The Sylvia Earle is at the cutting edge of nautical technology: robust, powerful and up to the task. Ulstein X-BOW® & Lounge The streamlined Ulstein X-BOW® cuts through the swell so you feel fewer vibrations and disturbances*, and makes quicker transits through waves. It also helps reduce our fuel consumption by up to 60%^. Experience the Glass Atrium Lounge inside the bow, featuring huge windows and superb views to the front of the ship. Swimming pool & wellness centre In between landings, enjoy the heated saltwater open air swimming pool and jacuzzis on board the Sylvia Earle and watch the world go by, or experience our gym, sauna or enjoy a massage (additional cost) in the Wellness centre. Safety features The Sylvia Earle will feature industry-leading safety technology that exceeds the requirements for a ship of this size with a world class return-to-port equipment, which duplicates the propulsion system, enabling the ship to maintain operating systems and comfort in the event of engine failure. The ship will also feature a fully-stocked medical clinic designed for use in remote areas. Responsible travel features We believe that preserving and protecting the environment is of the utmost importance and this is reflected in several features of the Sylvia Earle. The Sylvia Earle will boast one of the lowest polluting marine engines in the world due to low energy consumption, high fuel-efficiency and a streamlined design to deliver an 80% reduction in emissions. The ship can also utilise virtual anchoring to hold its position using a combination of GPS, steering technology, propellers and thrusters. This protects the sea floor and minimises the damage caused by conventional anchors. Zodiac launching platforms Our ships carry many Zodiacs, which you can board via four dedicated, sea-level launching platforms. These platforms make boarding the Zodiacs as quick, efficient and safe as possible, minimising wait times and getting you closer to the action for longer. Whether you’re Zodiac cruising through awe-inspiring fjords in search of wildlife or making a quick transit from ship to a shore landing site, these sturdy crafts will play an integral role in your expedition experience. Activity preparation area We offer a range of add-on adventure activities from kayaking and diving to climbing and ski touring, and your ship is designed to support these activities, making the transition from ship to sea or shore as smooth as possible. We built the spacious activity preparation areas and loading platforms in consultation with our expert activity guides. You will also have access to lockers and rapid drying areas for dry suits and wet suits, to give your gear the best chance to dry between excursions.

Itinerary



Day 1 - Day 1 Anchorage
Arrive in Anchorage and transfer to our group hotel. Upon check-in, reception staff will provide you with your Aurora Expeditions cabin tags. Please fill out the luggage tags clearly, showing your name and cabin number to allow us to deliver your luggage to your cabin. Enjoy a welcome drink and meet fellow expeditioners at our voyage briefing this evening. Accommodation: Hilton Anchorage (or similar)
Day 2 - Day 2 Nome
Transfer to Anchorage airport, board our charter flight to Nome and embark the Sylvia Earle. After boarding, there’s time to settle into your cabin before our important safety briefings. This evening meet your expedition team and crew at the Captain’s Welcome Dinner. In the evening, meet the expedition team and crew at the Captain’s Welcome Dinner.
Day 3 - Day 3 Providenyia
Informative briefings prepare you for upcoming landings, and sightings of beluga and grey whales enchant as you cross Bering Strait to Chukotka. In Provideniya, the administrative centre, you’ll be cleared into Russia and if time allows, visit the museum of history and culture, and perhaps take in a traditional Yupik dance performance.
Day 4 - Day 4 Lorino Village, Cape Dezhnev
Chukchi villagers warmly-welcome you into Lorino with traditional dance, samples of local delicacies and the chance to observe life in this outpost of reindeer herders and marine mammal hunters. Weather and sea permitting, you land at Cape Dezhnev, Eurasia’s easternmost point, to explore the ancient Inuit settlement of Naukan, and remains of a Soviet-era research centre (both now abandoned). Note the massive whale bones, somehow brought up the cliffs for building material.
Day 5 - Day 5 At sea
Enjoy informative talks from our team of experts as your Captain navigates an approach to Wrangel Island. Although pack ice can block the way, it varies from year to year. Even if the way is clear, it’s likely you’ll delight in sea ice in upcoming days.
Day 6 - Days 6-9 Wrangel Island
Your exploration of Wrangel and Herald Islands depends on ice and weather conditions. Whether searching pack ice for polar bears, ringed seals and walrus, or Zodiac cruising beneath slopes dotted with polar bears (adults and cubs) and walrus haulouts, you’ll be joined by local rangers keen to share their knowledge and love of this special place. Follow them across a vast landscape in search of reindeer, musk oxen and arctic fox. Search for fossilised remains of woolly mammoth, a kaleidoscope of wildflowers and listen to tales of Inuit and Chukchi hunters, the first European explorers and the survivors of the Karluk disaster.
Day 7 - Day 10 At sea
As you sail south, reflect on the wonders you’ve seen as you edit photos, enjoy entertaining talks or treat yourself to a gym workout and massage in the wellness centre.
Day 8 - Day 11 Kolyuchin Island, Kolyuchin Inlet
Weather permitting and with a wary eye for polar bears, you land on Kolyuchin Island, with its abandoned meteorological station and some of the Arctic’s most spectacular bird cliffs, where nesting puffins, guillemots and gulls are easily photographed. The tidal estuary of Kolyuchin Inlet offers wildflowers and a host of birds from yellow-billed loons to endemic emperor geese, as well as remains of dwelling mounds and graves of past inhabitants.
Day 9 - Day 12 Arakamchechen Islands, Penkigngey Bay
Humpback, grey and bowhead whales feed in the waters around Arakamchechen Island, while on land is the chance to quietly approach a walrus haulout. Sea cliffs on nearby Nuneangan Island are home to guillemots, tufted puffins and crested auklets. Penkigngey Bay, a long fjord, offers tundra wildflower walks and a scenic dip in hot springs.
Day 10 - Day 13 Ytytygran Island, Provideniya
On Ytytygran Island, visit Whale Bone Alley, where bones are thickly strewn for half a kilometre along the beach, and ‘meat pits’ attest to a busy Chukchi whaling camp. Still standing, immense bowhead whale jawbones and ribs form a monumental, ceremonial archway, while just offshore grey whales are frequently seen feeding. In Provideniya, bid a fond farewell to Russia and begin the return voyage across the Bering Sea.
Day 11 - Day 14 King Island
As we pass through Bering Strait, separating Russia and North America by only 100 kilometres / 60 miles, we hope to see beluga and grey whales. Conditions permitting, we land at King Island and explore the eerie, ancient village Ukivok, now abandoned after a tragic run of events. Murres and kittiwakes frequent the surrounding sea cliffs. As we depart, we celebrate the voyage end with a farewell dinner.
Day 12 - Day 15 Nome & Anchorage
Disembark in Nome, transfer to the airport and board our charter flight to Anchorage, where we spend the night. Accommodation: Hilton Anchorage (or similar)
Day 13 - Day 16 Depart Anchorage
Enjoy free time until check-out before continuing your journey.
Day 14 - Important note:
In the spirit of expedition travel, we encourage exploration and adventure offering flexibility in challenging environments. This itinerary is only a guide and is subject to change due to weather, sea, pack-ice and other conditions beyond our control.

Trip Dates

StartEndPrice FromRoom Type
19-07-202203-08-2022USD $15,995Aurora Stateroom Twin Share
19-07-202203-08-2022USD $16,895Aurora Stateroom Superior
19-07-202203-08-2022USD $17,295Balcony Stateroom Category C
19-07-202203-08-2022USD $18,295Balcony Stateroom Category B
19-07-202203-08-2022USD $19,595Balcony Stateroom Category A
19-07-202203-08-2022USD $21,395Balcony Stateroom Superior
19-07-202203-08-2022USD $26,795Junior Suite
19-07-202203-08-2022USD $31,895Captain’s Suite
01-08-202216-08-2022USD $17,295Balcony Stateroom Category C
01-08-202216-08-2022USD $18,295Balcony Stateroom Category B
01-08-202216-08-2022USD $19,595Balcony Stateroom Category A
01-08-202216-08-2022USD $21,395Balcony Stateroom Superior
01-08-202216-08-2022USD $26,795Junior Suite
01-08-202216-08-2022USD $31,895Captain’s Suite
01-08-202216-08-2022USD $15,995Aurora Stateroom Twin Share
01-08-202216-08-2022USD $16,895Aurora Stateroom Superior

Inclusions

    • Become one of the few people to visit the remote Wrangel Island Nature Reserve with the largest polar bear breeding grounds in the world
    • Experience performances depicting traditional life of the Yupik and Chukchi people
    • Zodiac cruise encounters with grey, humpback and beluga whales, walrus and thousands of seabirds often landing close by to feed
    • Tundra walks to spot a host of migrating birds including emperor geese, spoon-billed sandpipers and yellow-billed loons. Landing on Kolyuchin Island for close, cliff-top views of nesting puffins, guillemots and gulls

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