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Northern Lights tour in Northern Norway 2019

Join the expedition ship M/S Quest on a brand new adventure in true expedition style! In the middle of January, we will head into the fjords outside Tromsø to enjoy a grand natural wonderland and hopefully experience the magical Northern Lights. We will also visit the little coastal town of Alta to see the spectacular Northern Lights cathedral and learn more about the Sami culture. If we are lucky this expedition will also offer exclusive encounters with orcas and humpbacks!

  • Chance to see the Northern Lights
  • Chance to see orcas and humpback whales
  • Overnight stay at Sorrisniva Igloo Hotel
  • True expedition cruising with M/S Quest
  • Visit to a Sami camp
  • Climate compensated trip
Accommodation: Cabin on board M/S Quest. Transport: Expedition ship, Zodiacs.. Ship: M/S Quest. Guides: 5 guides. Passengers: 53 passengers. Languages: English & Swedish. Length: 5 days, 4 nights on ship. Price: From USD 2 490.


Day 1: Tromsø, Norway

We arrive in the Norwegian city of Tromsø, located 350 km north of the Arctic Circle, and beautifully framed by fjords and mountains peaks. The city has been the starting point for many polar expeditions and was referred to as “the Gateway to the Arctic” in the 1800s. During the afternoon we board the ship and settle into our comfortable cabins. After our first tasty dinner on board, we visit the Arctic Cathedral and take the cable car up to Fjellheisen, where we enjoy the magnificent view of Tromsø sparkling in the night. Back on board, it is time to head out in the fjord system – the expedition cruise has started!

Day 2 - 3: Expedition

We are now on an expedition cruise and our itinerary the following days is flexible due to weather and wildlife. We will travel in the middle of January, when the sun has only just returned, giving us direct sunlight for a short period each day. For those who are interested in photography, the light at this time of year is captivating. Even when the sun is below the horizon, we can enjoy enchanting dusks and dawns.

In clear weather we have good chances to see the spectacular Northern Lights (Aurora borealis) dance in the sky. Tromsø is known as one of the best destinations if you dream about watching this fascinating phenomenon. Watching the greenish light dancing above from our ship in the smooth, protected waters of the fjords is an extraordinary experience!

Since 2010, huge shoals of herring have overwintered in the fjords around Tromsø, which has attracted many orcas, but also humpbacks. As with any wild animals, it is hard to predict if they will return the 2018-2019 season, but with some luck we will experience unforgettable encounters with these incredible marine mammals.

During the trip, we hope to be fortunate to see both Northern Lights and whales, but when the opportunity arises, we will head out on exciting Zodiac cruises and go ashore to explore Tromsø’s dramatic islands up close. Perhaps the first snow has fallen and settled over the high mountain peaks, offering marvellous sceneries together with the small picturesque houses and the beautiful fjords. The area is also a popular haunt for white-tailed eagles. Rebbenesøya, Gjossøya, Ringvassøya and Seiland are examples on places we hope to explore.

On board, we will listen to inspiring lectures, enjoy delicious food and keep a lookout for wildlife and Northern Lights out on deck.

Day 4: Alta – Sami culture and the Northern Lights Cathedral

Today we head out on a full day outing to explore Alta and its surroundings. This little costal town, framed by high mountains and beautiful fjords, can be reached with an overnight journey on board our ship from Tromsø. Alta is also known as the city of the Northern Lights. Here you have great chances of seeing the Northern Lights, but it was also in Alta that Kristian Birkeland in 1899 built the world's first Northern Lights observatory. After breakfast, we leave the ship and after a couple of hours bus drive we reach a Sami camp, located in the heart of Sápmi - the region traditionally inhabited by the Sami people. Here we learn more about the Sami culture and enjoy a typical Sami lunch in a Lavvu. We then return to Alta, where we get a guided tour in the spectacular Northern Lights Cathedral. In connection to the cathedral we also find an interesting exhibition that tells us more about this colourful natural phenomenon.

Day 5: Tromsø

In the morning we disembark our ship and start the journey home or you may be continuing on to further adventures.

Please note: The exact route will depend on weather and possible wildlife encounters. The Captain and the Expedition Leader will do everything to maximise our experience. Please remember that flexibility is the key to a successful expedition!

The ship M/S Quest

  • Elke Lindner
  • Panorama lounge
    Niklas Nilsson
  • Panorama lounge
    Niklas Nilsson
  • Åsa Lindgren
  • Owner's Cabin
    Eirik Grønningsæter
  • Double Cabin Superior
    Eirik Grønningsæter
  • Double Cabin Superior
    Eirik Grønningsæter
  • Double Cabin
    Eirik Grønningsæter
  • Double Cabin
    Eirik Grønningsæter
  • Twin Cabin Plus
    Eirik Grønningsæter
  • Twin Cabin
    Eirik Grønningsæter
  • Triple Cabin
    Eirik Grønningsæter


The ship was built in Denmark in 1992 to serve as a ferry on Greenland’s west coast. In 2004/2005 she was completely refurbished into a comfortable expedition ship and in 2018 she underwent a renovation of the passenger areas. M/S Quest takes 53 passengers and all 26 cabins are outside cabins with private facilities. The triple cabins have upper and lower berths. All other cabins have two lower berths or a double bed. In your cabin you find a desk with a chair and a cupboard for storage. The superior cabins are spacious and have armchairs and TV. The owner’s cabin has a double bed, two large picture windows, a separate seating area and TV. 

In the dining room you are treated to delicious meals in between landings and in the panorama lounge you can enjoy breath-taking views of the surrounding landscape. Here you can listen to entertaining talks on the area’s flora, fauna and history. In the lounge you also find a bar and a small library. The ship has spacious observation decks, where you can enjoy the beautiful vistas. Passengers are welcome on the bridge around the clock and there is always something to see or search for. You are welcomed by an international crew and the atmosphere is relaxed and very friendly. There are five Zodiacs and five guides on board M/S Quest.

It is always possible to share a cabin on board M/S Quest. All cabins have windows and private facilities.

Cabins & prices

Cabin category Price per person
Triple cabin (upper/lower beds) USD 2 490
Twin cabin (2 twin beds) USD 2 890
Twin cabin Plus (2 twin beds) USD 2 990
Double cabin (double bed) USD 2 990
Double cabin Superior (large double bed)* USD 3 390
Owner's cabin (large double bed) USD 3 990
Twin cabin for single use USD 4 190

Please note: It is always possible to share a cabin on board M/S Quest. All cabins have windows and private facilities.

*The double bed in cabin 402, 319 & 301 is separable.

Price includes

  • 4 nights on board M/S Quest
  • All meals on board
  • Coffee and tea
  • An experienced Expedition Leader and knowledgeable guides
  • Guiding ashore and talks on board
  • All excursions and activities
  • Comprehensive information material before the expedition
  • An illustrated post-expedition log

Not included

  • Flight to/from Tromsø
  • Travel and cancellation insurance
  • The customary gratuity to the ship’s crew
  • Personal expenses such as bar and shop charges

Departures & booking

Please do not hesitate to contact us if you have any questions or wish to make a reservation.

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