Greenland is the birthplace of the most incredible icebergs in the world. Wild nature, limited amount of tourists, colorful and friendly local villages… Greenland is absolute must-see at least once in a lifetime! If you ask us what is the best time to go, we’ll definitely answer: the second half of July! This time of the year the sun just slightly touches horizon, giving incredible opportunity to photograph all the night long! Imagine infinite sunset slowly going into sunrise during the midnight sun period!
The Disko Bay is located on the West coast of Greenland, north of the Arctic Circle. It’s a pure Arcic, and not only because of the biggest icebergs in the world, but also because of the wildlife (arctic foxes, musc ox, humpback whales…)
Our base will be located in Ilulissat, the capital of the Disko Bay Ice Kingdom. We don’t need to book hotel. You will be accommodated at the sailing boat in Greenland all the tour. We start at Ilulissat village and will be mooring there several times. Ilulissat is a nice local town with colorful houses, dog sledges around and very friendly people. In Ilulissat you can find museums, restaurants, nice hikes, fish markets, souvenir shops and many optional activities. Ilulissat is situated next to beautiful icefiord. Sermeq Kujalleq glacier is the place where the most giant icebergs in the world are born. Imagine that the glacier advances for 20 meters per day! Ice production of the glacier is around 46 cubic kilometers per year ( it is equivalent to U.S. annual water consumption). Word “Ilulissat” means icebergs, that’s explains the thing.
The sea is the only one road that connects Greenlandic villages. There are no highways or roads between settlements. That’s why we charter our private boat for the whole period of our journey.
We will primarily work together in the night, taking photos from the boat. We will cruise among huge icebergs at Icefjord, scout for best compositions, and reach distant icebergs.
We also visit Greenlandic settlements like Qasigiannguit, Aasiaat, Oqaatsut.
On the way to these settlements we also hunt for huge icebergs, as you may find “Iceberg-skyscraper” only in the open sea, where it rotates and polishes by sun. Disko bay is well-known area where humpback whales and seals are feeding. Whale watching is essential during our adventure!
Since the dates of our tour fall on the most amazing light at Disko bay, our itinerary will be based on photography during the night period. We start late at the evening and continue through the night, chasing the best available light. It will help us to get dramatic and colorful photos of ice and fire. Usually colors are very saturated in the night, from deep blue ice to flaming red and pink color in the sky.
The tour is suitable for any level of activities. Our captain works with photographers for a long time, and knows where to slow down or stop. Usually there are no ways in the Icefjord, as ice blocks ripples and waves. So you might be able to see amazing reflections! Please note that the itinerary proposed may subject to the weather conditions, but we aim to get you to the best locations and help you to get brilliant photos. A week in Arctic wait for you!
Schooner «Maria» is a modern sailingship, that has been designed by the world-famous ship designer O. van Meer Design, and was built by Laan & Kooy, Den Oever in Holland. Originally the ship’s hull was constructed in 1963 as a fishing vessel, and worked as a fishing vessel on the North Sea after being finished. Year 1993 the old fishing vessel was modified to become a sailing vessel and was equipped to meet the standards of a charter vessel.
The vessel is equipped to meet all the modern safety requirements, and is always carrying a certificated and competent crew according to the authorities requirements.
All passenger cabins are equipped with a sink. On the corridor you can find 5 pcs toilets and 5 pcs showers. The vessel has a 230V electrical system, to which electricity can be produced with our own generators while at sea.
We recommend you the flight which arrives around 13:00 to Ilulissat. Please check AirGreenland or Air Iceland (option for those flying from USA via Reyjkavik) for available tickets. The best way is to fly from Copenhagen with one change at Kangerlussuaq. We will meet you on the schooner in the port.
After the welcome dinner we depart to the Icefjord. You meet with greatest icebergs in the world tonight! At magic hours we photograph icebergs , cruising around the fjord. Our trip is constructed for photographers, unlike touristic cruises you may book on solo trip to Ilulissat.
it’s worth planning our nights instead of days as we will have a lazy afternoon after the breakfast and processing/photography instructions during the daytime when the light is harsh. After the dinner we sail again through the icefjord. Today we start earlier, as we want to take you to small settlements south from Icefjord Kangia, to Qasigiannguit and/or Ilimanaq. We may also visit Aassiat – our favorite place for whale-watching!
Our final choice will depend on ice conditions. Both settlements have beautiful colorful old buildings dating from the colonial time. On the way back we photograph icebergs of Icefjord, and open-water icebergs. Some of them may look like castles! Arches, mountain shapes, towers – it’s even hard to imagine these masterpieces the nature creates!
Following the breakfast we’ll have some sleep and after lunch we load to our boat to travel to Oqaatsut or Rodebay, a small settlement located to the north from Ilulissat. Here we have a little excursion through the village with just 45 inhabitants. Although they have a church, shop, school and church!
Later we head towards Uummannaq along the shores of Disco island. This volcanic island is full of wonders: seashores with flowers and black sand, deep and remote Inuit settlements. We will visit some of them for sure!
We never give up on our active nightlife, so we start our midnight sun sailing session approximately at 23:00. We sail further North chasing Midnight sun and never setting sun! Today we plan to reach Uummannaq – this unique island has a beautiful heart shape, the lake in the middle. And it’s usually surrounded by absolutely spectacular icebergs! We spend time both at the sea around the island, and walking inside the settlement and the lake in search for beautiful sunset compositions!
Today we plan to start sailing back to Icefjord and Disko bay. If the weather permits we reach volcanic Disko island and photograph it’s amazing wild landscapes. We plan our time the way we can photograph the most beautiful icebergs/mountains under Midnight sun light.
Photographing landscapes of Disko island, Disko bay Icebergs and the Icefjord. Tonight we spend most of the time in the icefjord. After the “sunrise” we return back to Ilulissat harbour.
We have breakfast and farewell-meeting. This is a departure day – latest check out is scheduled to 11:00 a.m.
Difference with our classical Midnight sun tour:
During sailing tour you will stay on board of the schooner, this will allow you to travel deeper North and reach settlements and locations accessible only by boat. We may sail longer to reach arches, towers, beautiful mountains. And highlight of the trip – Uuummanaq fjord. We will use the schooner as a model too! Imagine photos of the beautiful classical schooner against icebergs and mountains!
Highlights of the trip:
· We focus on beautiful landscapes and seascapes of Disko Bay, Disko island and Uummanaq fjords. Sail among greatest icebergs in the world in the best available light through the year!
· Enjoy the walk through Greenlandic settlements reachable only by sea. You have time for travel and people photography during the tour.
· Hike with us along fjords and icebergs during the midnight.
· Whale safari. As we spend plenty of time in the sea each day, we should encounter plenty of whales on our way.
· boat rides each day of the tour! Enjoy the private chartered cruise.
5900 EUR per person twin cabin (7 cabins),
4900 EUR per person triple cabin (3 cabins).
Included in the price:
- accommodation on the schooner
- Meals on board (breakfast, lunch, dinner)
- Private boat charter with a crew
- Port taxes and fees, fuel
- Services of professional crew (captain + 5-7 sailors)
- Services of cook on board
Not included in the price:
– Airfare to and from Ilulissat airport
– Taxi from airport to port (7-10 min)
– Alcoholic beverages
– Visas (if applicable)
What to bring
– DSLR camera with tripod and remote shutter release
– A wide angle lens. For example, Nikkor 14-24 or Canon 17-40. Best lens for use in wide-angle scenes or architecture photography
– A middle-zoom lens such as a 24-70 mm
– A telephoto zoom lens, such as a 70-200 mm. 300 mm with 1.5 TC or 500 mm, 600 mm are recommended for wildlife and bird photography. Be sure to have additional tripod mount to this lens.
– Waterproof and windproof jacket (consider the average temperature 0 – +10 C at nights and +8 – +15 C during the daytime)
– Waterproof pants
– Warm jacket and thermal pants
– Wellingtons or fishing boots
The full list will be sent by mail to participants.