Scottish Isles & Norwegian Fjords
On this exceptional 8-day cruise, discover the rugged landscapes of the Scottish Isles and the beauty of the Norwegian fjords. These Ponant voyages in alliance with Smithsonian Journeys uniquely include transfers to and from the ship on embarkation and disembarkation days, talks and discussions aboard ship by world-class experts from Smithsonian Journeys, and a shore excursion or activity in each port of call that encourages guests to embrace the sights, sounds, tastes and smells of the local environment and culture.
The voyage begins in Glasgow, Scotland or Bergen, Norway. Northbound, begin in Scotland’s cultural capital with a rich artistic and architectural heritage. Sail to Fort William for a cruise of fabled Loch Ness or a tour of a local distillery. From Kyle of Lochalsh, enjoy the unparalleled Isle of Skye and Eilean Donan, one of the most recognizable castles in the world. Next sail to either Kirkwall or Stromness, Orkney, for numerous seabirds and the Standing Stones of Stenness, a designated UNESCO World Heritage site. Visit Lerwick, the main port in the Shetland Islands. Nearby is the Jarlshof prehistoric and Norse settlement, where Neolithic people first settled more than 4,000 years ago.
Cross the North Sea for the small and charming village of Olden, near to one of the last ice caps in Europe, the Briksdal Glacier. Discover Flåm with a beautiful train journey high into the mountains of western Norway. View stunning rivers, waterfalls and cultural landscapes around every corner. The voyage ends in Bergen, famous for its Hanseatic wharf, Bryggen, a UNESCO World Heritage site which still carries traces of the rich historic past of the city founded by the Vikings.
One 184-guest luxury French vessel operates this Norway cruise: Le Champlain. Enjoy refined and attentive service, a plethora of onboard activities and unrivaled elegance. Appreciate understated sophistication, an international feel and top-notch guides aboard this ship. Le Champlain features 100% private balconies or terraces, innovative equipment, elegantly designed guest accommodations, welcoming lounge areas that open to the outside and the Blue Eye underwater lounge–a multi-sensory space in the ship’s hull featuring hydrophones, expansive underwater views and other amenities that create the feeling of being underwater beside the marine life that the ship is sailing past. On both ships, a variety of onboard activities engage guests while underway.