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Winter expedition in Northern Norway 2020

Join a unique adventure in Northern Norway! This autumn PolarQuest celebrates 20 years. As part of the celebration we now offer a discount on our unique 4-night expedition cruise in Northern Norway with M/S Quest! During the cruise, we enjoy a grand natural wonderland and hopefully get to see the magical Northern Lights (Aurora Borealis). In addition, we keep a lookout for orcas, humpback whales and sea eagles. We are proud to present our guest chef Alexandra Zazzi and as an extra bonus we will offer photo workshops on board. The itinerary also includes a visit to the world’s northernmost whisky distillery.


  • Chance to see the Northern Lights
  • Chance to see orcas and humpback whales
  • Photo workshops
  • Alexandra Zazzi, guest chef
  • Experience the magnificent fjords
  • Dramatic sceneries
  • True expedition cruising
  • 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 2 090. Departure: 21 January 2020


Day 1: Alta, Norway

The little coastal town of Alta is framed by high mountains and beautiful fjords and is known as the city of the Northern Lights. Here you have great chances of seeing this phenomenon and it was in Alta that Kristian Birkeland in 1899 built the world’s first Northern Lights observatory. In the afternoon we embark the M/S Quest and the expedition has started!

Day 2 – 4: Expedition cruising

We are now on an expedition cruise, our itinerary is flexible and depends on weather and wildlife ecnounters. We travel during the second half of January, when the sun has just returned, giving us direct sunlight for a short time each day.

For those who are interested in photography, the light 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. This region is known as one of the best destinations if you dream about watching this fascinating phenomenon. To see the greenish light dancing above 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 and Alta, which has attracted many orcas, but also humpback whales. As with any wild animals, it is difficult to predict if they will return during the winter of 2019/2020, 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 and when the opportunity arises, we will head out on exciting Zodiac cruises and go ashore to explore Tromsø area’s dramatic islands up close. The snow-covered mountain peaks  together with the small picturesque houses and the beautiful fjords offer marvellous sceneries. The area is also a popular haunt for white-tailed eagles. Rebbenesøya, Skorpa, Ringvassøya and Seiland are examples on places we hope to explore.

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

Day 5: Tromsø

In the morning we disembark in 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.

Please note: The exact route will depend on weather and possible whale 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!

Photo workshops

On board this voyage, a photographer will hold photo workshops and share his/her knowledge on photographing. This is a complimentary activity offered on board and will not affect the general program of the voyage.

Guest chef: Alexandra Zazzi

We are proud to present our guest chef Alexandra Zazzi, who will be responsible for one of the dinners on board.

The ship M/S Quest

  • Elke Lindner
  • Christian Engelke
  • Niklas Nilsson
  • 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 2 090
Twin cabin (2 twin beds) USD 2 690
Twin cabin Plus (2 twin beds) USD 2 990
Double cabin (double bed) USD 2 990
Double cabin Superior (large double bed)* USD 3 490
Owner's cabin (large double bed) USD 3 790
Twin cabin for single use USD 4 790

Price includes

  • 4 nights on board M/S Quest
  • All meals
  • Coffee and tea
  • Experienced and knowledgeable guides
  • Guiding ashore and talks on board
  • All excursions and activities
  • Photo workshops
  • Whisky tasting
  • Comprehensive information material before the expedition
  • The trip is climate compensated

Not included

  • Flight to Alta and 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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Departure Return
21 January 2020 25 January 2020

Related blog posts

  • In the land of Northern Lights

    In January, our little expedition ship M/S Quest headed out in the fjords outside Tromsø and Alta in Northern Norway, an area offering unforgettable winter adventures. Since 2010, huge shoals of herring have overwintered in the fjords, which has attracted many orcas and humpback whales. Below, please read about orcas, humpback whales and the magical Northern Lights in a blog post written by our guide Andreas.

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