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North Pole

14 days

To reach the North Pole is the pinnacle of Arctic expedition endeavors. Few people can say they stood at the one earthly spot where every direction is south. Crushing through the ice, admiring soaring seabirds and visiting Franz Josef Land, your voyage will be one that you won’t soon forget. The added excitement of helicopter excursions and an optional hot air balloon ride at the top of the world make this Quark Expeditions adventure a true once-in-a-lifetime experience.

Day-by-Day Expedition in Brief

  • Top of the World 90° N
  • Nuclear-powered icebreaker, 50 Years of Victory
  • Optional aerial sightseeing by hot air balloon
  • Zodiac cruising
  • Franz Josef Land wildlife and wildflowers

Day 1 — Helsinki, Finland

Your adventure begins with a one-night stay in Helsinki, Finland’s capital.

Day 2 — Embarkation Day in Murmansk

From Helsinki, you’ll join your fellow passengers on the charter flight to Murmansk, Russia, where you’ll embark on your voyage to the North Pole.

Days 3 to 6 — Northbound in the Arctic Ocean

Being on board Victory and feeling the icebreaker as it crushes through the arctic pack ice is an experience you’ll never forget. Just as memorable is boarding the ship’s helicopter for a thrilling aerial view over the ship and the expansive Arctic Ocean.

Day 7 — 90° North

All the anticipation of the prior days reaches a climax as you reach the North Pole!

Day 8 — Southbound in the Arctic Ocean

On our return voyage you can sit back and relax. As you head farther south you may get lucky and spot polar bears hunting for seals.

Days 9 and 10 — Franz Josef Land and the Arctic Ocean

This group of 191 islands forms the most northerly archipelago in Eurasia and lies entirely within the Arctic Circle. Here, you’ll explore Cape Flora and discover historic remains from three ill-fated arctic expeditions.

Days 11 and 12 — Southbound at Sea

Enjoy your time on deck or reminisce with your shipmates and new friends as you cross the Arctic Ocean back to Murmansk.

Day 13 — Disembarkation in Murmansk

Returning to Russia’s most northerly city, it will be time to bid farewell to your ship, 50 Years of Victory.

Day 14 — Helsinki, Finland

Spend some extra time exploring Helsinki, Tallinn (the capital of Estonia) and Saint Petersburg.
View full 14-day itinerary »

Adventure Options Add an Extra Rush of Adrenaline to Your Expedition

Every Quark Arctic voyage includes great daily outdoor activities including Zodiac cruises, hiking and some also offer snowshoeing. We also offer kayaking on most of our voyages; a great way to experience the beauty of the Arctic in a more personal way. Contact a Quark Polar Travel Adviser to learn more about adventure options, including physical requirements.

To be booked onboard the voyage ($295 per person)

Experience the North Pole in a way few will ever experience – soaring above the Arctic in a hot air balloon! When weather permits, we'll take you up for a breathtaking bird's eye view of 90° North. Don't forget your camera!

(weather permitting)

Expedition Facts

Spirit of Adventure

“Wonderful trip was outstanding staff. Ship extremely comfortable and delicious and imaginative menus. Especially like your spirit of adventure! You want us to experience all your “toys” like helicopter rides and zodiac rides. It has been a dream trip come true! Thank You!”

Jean Rolles

North Pole, The Ultimate Arctic Adventure 2012

Onboard Lectures

Presentations by Quark’s Expedition Team are included as part of your voyage. Through formal illustrated presentations, as well as informal briefings, the Quark Expeditions Team will cover a range of topics including ornithology, marine biology, glaciology, geography, geology, history and the environment.

Packing Tips

Pack to dress in layers so you are prepared for these rapid weather changes. Average daily temperatures in mid-season are between 25 and 35 Fahrenheit or -4 and +2 Celsius; however wind conditions can make it seem colder.

Be sure your base layers and mid layers are made from breathable fabrics and your outer layers are waterproof (not water resistant) and don't forget to pack a hat, neck warmer and sunscreen & sunglasses.

Visit the Quark online Gear Shop to help prepare for your expedition.