Set sail on an epic 10-day journey to the remote wilderness of Scoresby Sound in east Greenland! You'll have the wonderful opportunity to photograph beautiful creations of nature, from icebergs to glaciers and more.
This is an area that harks back to a time when nature reigned supreme. Its pristine landscapes, unique weather patterns and stunning seasons combine to create some of the most amazing scenes that you'll ever witness.
During this summer photography expedition in Greenland, you'll sail through the incredible fjord system of Scoresby Sound, where basalt cliffs are juxtaposed by towering icebergs sculpted by the heat of the sun. Immerse yourself in the abundance of wildlife from seabirds to whales, and capture the rare vegetation that teems in the far reaches of this Arctic wonderland as you make your way through the waters, bathed in the surreal light of the Midnight Sun.
You'll receive expert local guidance and stellar photographic education as you focus on developing your landscape photography skills, all while adding stunning images to your landscape photography portfolio.
The bulk of our traveling will take place on board our ship the Donna Wood. It’s a fitting way to explore this part of the world, and we will sail along in silence without disturbing areas that have stood quietly for thousands of years. While the deck of the ship will offer incredible views throughout the tour, we will be using zodiac boats to take trips onto shore and extend our exploration of the many glaciers and icebergs.
Total price: 7900 USD
New 2019 / 2020 Dates
20 – 29 Aug 2019
28 Jul – 6 Aug 2020
4 – 13 Aug 2020
11 – 20 Aug 2020
Guided by Raymond Hoffman
5 Spots Left
Highlights of the Tour
Journey into Scoresby Sound
Scoresby Sound in the east of Greenland is a large fjord system that brims with breathtaking beauty. Situated well above the Arctic Circle and covering an area of over 38,000 km², its branchlike structure and unique location make for stunning landscapes to explore.
The compositions here are endless, offering spectacular subjects in the range of wildlife, landscapes and nature. Our focus will be on the dreamlike icebergs that float majestically through the waterways, framed by granite mountains set against the glorious light of the Midnight Sun.
As we make our way through Scoresby Sound, we'll have time to stop off at the many villages and settlements by the shore, making for a truly cultural experience that you'll never forget.
Scoresby Sound - History
Few places on the planet remain as untouched as Scoresby Sound. Although the people from the Thule culture lived here many years before, its namesake comes from the English explorer William Scoresby, who first mapped the area in detail in 1822.
Scoresby Sound is relatively young in terms of tourism, having only been made accessible to travellers from the 1980s onwards. During this expedition, you'll have the opportunity to learn more about its history, as well as to meet the native Greenlandic people of the Ittoqqortoormiit settlement.
Founded in 1925 by the Danish government, this remote settlement is made up of people from all over Greenland. Its history is rooted in harsh living conditions, though this has not stopped the locals from going about their daily business and transforming the town into a veritable hub for tourists. Welcoming and friendly, they seek to share their culture with all those who visit. The settlement is bordered by the Greenland National Park, which at 18,000 km, is the largest national park in the world.
Flora & Fauna of Scoresby Sound
There is a lot to see and photograph in Scoresby Sound, with scenes as surreal as what you'd see in a nature documentary! From arctic sea birds to wild animals and rare plants, this photography expedition will expose you to the extreme beauty of Greenland.
Expect to photograph seals, walruses, Bowhead whales, musk oxen, arctic foxes, lemmings and more. During our Zodiac landings, we'll have ample time to explore the shores and to capture these native animals within their natural habitat.
So close and yet so far! Your first day will see you arriving at Keflavik International Airport in Iceland, where you'll begin this incredible adventure. Using your Flybus ticket, you'll make your way towards your hotel in the city centre. Depending on what time you arrive, you may have some time to explore the city at your leisure, before meeting your fellow travellers and photography guides in the lobby later in the evening. There'll be time to get to know one another better over a delicious dinner. Your guides will give you a run-down on the itinerary as well as other details to prepare you for the days to come.
You'll get up bright and early for a 2-hour flight to Constable Point Airport in Greenland. It's here that the adventure will truly begin! We'll board our ship, the Donna Wood, and receive a full safety briefing from the crew onboard.
Our first stop will be the remote and colourful village of Ittoqqortoormiit at the mouth of Scoresby Sound, which is home to roughly 500 people. The lifestyle here is simple, comprised mainly of hunting, gathering and fishing. You'll have the opportunity to photograph locals as they go about their daily business, set amongst a stunning backdrop of mountains and brightly coloured houses all around.
On this day, we'll set sail into Greenland's largest and most spectacular fjord – Scoresby Sound. Be prepared to have your breath taken away as the landscape changes before your eyes. You'll be met with tall granite mountains and awe-inspiring icebergs of all shapes and sizes, floating serenely upon the reflective waters.
We'll shoot deep into the night, as the skies will never really get dark. The gorgeous light of the Midnight Sun will cast the icebergs in an ethereal glow, making you feel like you're almost on another planet.
In the evening, we'll arrive at Hekla Havn, a former Inuit settlement and cove where you'll have the chance to wander around, capturing the vast layers of scenery.
In the morning on day four, we'll sail by the majestic basalt mountains that line the shores of Føhnfjord. You'll have ample opportunities to photograph the peaks of Gåseland that rise from our port side though you'll most likely be in awe by the 2000 metre tall cliffs of Milne Land on our starboard horizon.
As we make our way through Harefjord into Rødefjord, we'll no doubt be presented with a myriad of different icebergs taking on different shapes and forms that will make for the perfect subjects as we line up our shots.
This area is known for its amazing scenery, so we'll spend a couple of nights in the surrounds, exploring to our heart's content.
Day five sees us venturing further into Harefjord, as we make a landing onshore in search of interesting compositions. There'll be a lot to keep us occupied, from wildlife to flora, stunning scenery, golden mountain peaks and icy glacial outlets.
At the end of the day, we'll gather around a toasty bonfire and settle in for a barbecue of delicious local cuisine.
On this day, we'll leave Harefjord and sail towards Øfjord, an area renowned for sheer granite cliff faces that seem to rise straight out of the water and above us. This will be an exciting day as we capture the incredible surrounds, before stopping at Jyttes Havn in Bjørneøe for further photographic opportunities. Get ready to be swayed by a sweeping coastline, made all the more beautiful by the surrounding mountain ridges and lakes.
What better way to spend day seven than by scrambling ashore to explore the area around Jytteshavn! You'll have some time to wander through the Bear Islands, practicing your newfound photography skills as you immerse yourself in this fantastic natural reserve.
The cliffs here are home to thousands of seabirds, which will make for amazing photographs! If you're so inclined, you might even like to go for a swim in the water here, which can be quite warm at a surprising 13°C.
Once you've had your fill of shooting for the day, we'll return to the ship for dinner, before enjoying another lovely bonfire on the beach to close out the evening.
Day eight marks the moment that we sail the Tyhe channel between the Bear Islands and Milne land, otherwise known as the Arctic Riviera. Along the way, you'll be treated to astounding views of colossal icebergs floating serenely in the calm blue waters. Once again, we'll make the most of the mystical Midnight Sun light, capturing these icebergs in all of their glory. By the morning, we'll have made our way back to Constable Point.
Sadly, this day will be our final one in Greenland. We'll begin the morning with breakfast as a group, using the time to reflect upon our experiences and achievements along the way. When the time comes, we'll disembark from the Donna Wood and make our way to the airport for our return flight to Reykjavik.
Unfortunately, day ten marks the end of our time together on this landscape photography workshop. After breakfast, you'll bid farewell to the rest of the group and return to Keflavik International Airport for your onward journey or your flight back home.
This sailing tour takes place aboard the Donna Wood, a two-mast ship made of oak. It's a peaceful and tranquil way to explore the best that Scoresby Sound has to offer, with minimal disturbance to the surrounding environment and wildlife.
The ship is comprised of 24 seats on deck and 12 seats below, as well as accommodation in the form of 7 cabins equipped with wash basins and closets. Shower facilities and toilets are shared within a communal hallway.
During your time on board the Donna Wood, you'll make several trips ashore via Zodiac boats to explore the flora and fauna of the surrounds. It's the perfect way to immerse yourself in the spectacular landscapes of Greenland.
Flight from Reykjavik to Constable Point and back to Reykjavik
Transport to and from the airport in Reykjavik and Constable Point
Accommodation in made up bunk/beds with shared facilities.
Soft drinks, services of the crew.
Full board (breakfast, lunch, dinners).
Airfare to and from Iceland.
Excess baggage charges.
Laundry charges and items of personal nature.
Alcoholic beverages (available for extra charge & to be paid upon departure with cash money).
Optional pre or post tours in Iceland
Accommodation in Reykjavik
HOW DO I GET FROM THE AIRPORT TO THE BOAT?
After collecting your luggage upon arrival a pickup truck with an open and wide platform will transport you to the harbour (approx. 3 minutes ride) where our crew hands over your warm and floatable device (overall) for the tour. Upon boarding the vessel, you’ll be shown to your cabin/bunk. The actual transport to the schooner is done by zodiac – let the adventure begin !!
HOW DIFFICULT IS THE TRIP?
The trip is not challenging unless you really want it to be. You can unwind and relax surrounded by the beautiful stunning landscape. You will be able to do some easy to moderately difficult hikes (always accompanied with a professional guide) when ashore in various beautiful settings, and if willing, and only if, you can help the crew on board in their tasks while cruising or sailing. No specific preparations or skills are required for the trip itself, but a good spirit and love for the nature and adventure is a „must-bring-along“ !
DO I NEED TO BRING SLEEPING BAGS AND TOWELS ALONG?
Not needed in your baggage, we provide warm bedding and covers as well as blankets and a set of towels.
HOW IS THE ACCOMMODATION ONBOARD?
Your accommodation is in traditional but new and clean bunks. Please understand, the space onboard is limited, also for luggage storage (please do not bring hard cover luggage).
HOW IS THE FOOD OFFERED ONBOARD AND DO YOU OFFER BEVERAGES?
Our full board service includes breakfast, lunch and dinner. We have put a lot of care in planning supplies and your meals. Occasionally we also serve a light snack during the day, and snacks are also available upon request. Soft drinks and water are available at any time and alcoholic beverage/liquor is for sale onboard at a reasonable price. After you confirm your booking, a Medical Information sheet will be sent to you, gathering information on your health and/or allergies for various foods.
IS THERE A SHOWER ONBOARD?
Yes, we have a simple but hot shower onboard, which is available most of the times. But please understand, water supply can be limited, therefore we will kindly ask you to adapt.
HOW IS THE ACCESSIBILITY ONBOARD?
Please be aware, the staircases to living quarters have steep stairs but with good railing and parts of the ship have a low ceiling so mind your head. You should also be aware, that transfer between land and the schooner is operated by zodiac (there are no harbours in the whole of Scoresby Sound area), so no gangway.
WHAT SHOULD I BRING ON THIS EXPEDITION?
Sun-protection and bug repellant
Warm clothes incl. scarf, mittens, hat and warm Thermal underwear
Light wool sweater or fleece (2nd layer).
Warm Jacket – Wool or fleece (3rd layer).
Shell Jacket or/and Rain jacket with hood – Waterproof and breathable material.
Gore-Tex or alternative Hiking Boots – The boots should be of leather (or leather and synthetic) with high cut to give sufficient ankle support. Preferably the sole should be soft but robust.
Gore-Tex or alternative waterproof membrane is a preferable extra.
Water container – e.g. plastic bottle (pet plastic).
Toothbrush, earplugs and other personal belongings
It is advisable that what you wear is either waterproof or easy to dry
No umbrella is needed !
CAN I WASH OR/AND DRY YOUR CLOTHES?
Due to shortage on water supply, we will ask you to avoid cleaning your clothes on board. If anything gets wet during the trip, the engine room is very warm and can be used as a perfect drying place
CAN I RECHARGE BATTERIES AND USE THE ELECTRICAL POWER ONBOARD?
Power for charging your batteries is available during sailing, when the motor is running (220V). We ask you to not charge batteries during the night, when anchoring. Standard Icelandic plugs are available (two pins EU size)
IS THERE PHONE / WEB ACCESS?
The area we are cruising is very remote. Cell phones and internet are not working. Part of the charm of the trip is this fact actually! However cell phones work at the airport in Constable Point. If urgent, passengers can make a phone call with one of the ship’s satellite phones or send e-mail, sms or fax via Inmarsat, (the ship’s satellite communications system)
HOW IS THE CLIMATE / WEATHER?
You can expect temperatures between 2 and 12 degree Celsius, but the area is also known for having very little rain. It can be windy but on clear days and no wind, the sun can be very strong! Due to the long lasting high pressure over Greenland, the weather is usually very still
DO YOU USE THE SAILS MOST OF THE TIME?
No! Due to still weathers, narrow fjords and many icebergs we use the engine most of the time when traveling in the fjord system. We will however take up sails when possible and at least one time during the trip we should have the opportunity to experience proper sailing, without the engine. The crew will gladly and proudly educate you about the Sailing ships.
CAN I HELP/ASSIST ONBOARD?
You are more than welcome to assist at any point with whatever duties need to be done – but it is not mandatory at all.
AM I LIKELY TO BE SEASICK?
No !! The excitement of your approaching sea cruise needn't be spoiled with the fear of sea sickness. Until you actually sail, there's no way to tell. Please note however, that the sea in Scoresby Sound fjord is very calm and you are therefore not likely to get seasick. However, if you tend to suffer from this illness, like many other people, the best is to take sea sickness precautions. If you haven't been to sea before, better be safe than sorry and take preventative measures. The motion sickness patch is probably the most popular these days - to be placed behind your ear 4 hours before boarding and changed if necessary after 72 hours. This is quite an effective way to prevent seasickness but causes things like a dry mouth and blurry vision. Better to be thirsty than sick, though! The active ingredient, scopolamine, is absorbed through the skin.
DO I NEED CASH AND VARIOUS MONIES CURRENCIES?
We kindly ask to pay your consumption of alcoholic beverages onboard on the last day in cash in ISK or EUR. We do not accept credit cards. There is only one small souvenir shop, supermarket, small shop and one bar in Ittoqqortoormiit. They do accept DKK or EUR. Payment in EUR will receive change in DKK. Credit cards are accepted only at the supermarket and the souvenir shop.
Cancellation and Refund Policy
We strongly recommend you to get a Trip Cancellation & Travel Insurance after booking your trip. If you cancel and the Workshop is otherwise filled, we will refund you the full amount you have paid towards the tuition, minus a $300 service charge. If you cancel and the Workshop does not fill, then you will be refunded according to the following schedule, based on the full fee of the Workshop:
Greater than 90 days from the start date of the Workshop: full refund minus $300 service fee.
75 days or more: 75% refund 60 days or more: 50% refund
Less than 60 days: no refund
Refunds will be paid by the same method that the original payment was made.
We highly recommend that you get a travel and medical insurance. Your own domestic government medical insurance and private health scheme will not cover you whilst you are overseas.
The tour is always dependent on weather, as the Icelandic weather can indeed be highly unpredictable. Likewise, visits to ice caves are dependent on favorable conditions, and indeed the ice caves themselves are not permanent. When it comes to the Northern Lights, while they are most likely to be seen between September and April, there is no guarantee that they will appear on a given day.