Pent-up demand generates strong interest in expedition cruising now
and into 2022 with new cruises around the British Isles and Indonesia
DOWNERS GROVE, IL – May 18, 2021 … While demand for expedition-style small ship cruising extends far into 2023, travellers are increasingly eager for more immediate opportunities to explore the world. In response, Abercrombie & Kent (A&K) just announced Iceland Cruise: Circumnavigating the Land of Fire & Ice (Sept 11-21, 2021; 11 days from $11,995), a chance to discover the island’s abundant natural beauty, from the volcanoes in the south to the waterfalls on the east, and from the whale watching haven in the north to the lava-formed mountains and glacier-carved terrain of the west.
As the first country in Europe to reopen to international visitors, Iceland requires proof of COVID-19 vaccination or recovery from the disease, and passengers will be given a COVID-19 test on arrival.
“Our guests are ready for a change of scenery and Iceland more than delivers,” explains Bob Simpson, A&K VP of Expedition Cruising. “As soon as Iceland announced they were opening up to international travellers, we designed an expedition cruise that circumnavigates the entire island to experience all that it has to offer. It obviously struck a chord, as we’ve already sold a significant number of cabins just through word of mouth with our travel advisor partners, before we even announced the trip publicly. This shows how eager our guests are to get back out and explore the world once they’ve been vaccinated.”
Cruise through the Westman Islands to see how a 1973 volcanic eruption created Heimaey Island’s unique geography and get an up-close view of UNESCO World Heritage site Surtsey Island, considered Iceland’s southernmost point. Watch as masses of sculpted blue ice float by the picturesque glacial lagoon at the foot of Vatnajokull, Iceland’s largest ice cap. Explore the east coast, including the colorful fishing village of Seydisfjordur; Fossardalur Valley, surrounded by over 30 waterfalls cascading down the mountainous wall; and Skalanes, a private nature reserve that is home to 47 different species of birds, including eider ducks, black-tailed godwits and gyrfalcons.
Discover each destination on a choice of included shore excursions designed by A&K’s local experts. Visit the Husavik Whale Museum, an A&K Philanthropy project and one of the world’s foremost centers for research into whales, then embark on a scenic whale-watching excursion. Discover historic settlements, from the Viking hamlet of Sandvik, with 100 permanent residents who earn their living from fishing and fish processing, to the ghost town of Djupavik, once home to one of the biggest herring processing factories in Europe.
Explore the Westfjords, a more remote part of the country, to see small settlements like Isafjordur. interspersed amongst spectacular lava-formed mountains and coves. Kayak its glacial bays or learn about the history of trolls, elves and ghosts on a guided walk. Cruise past the stunning bird cliffs at Latrabjarg, Europe’s easternmost point. Take in the grandeur of Dynjandi Falls on a leisurely walk to a viewing platform or hike all the way to the top. Wander along Red Sand Beach, one of the island’s most beguiling shorelines, with sands that subtly change color, shifting through a palette of reds, golds and greys in the sunlight. End the adventure with a visit to the glacier-carved terrain of the Snaefellsnes Peninsula, with its fishing villages, stunning glacier and views of a majestic, extinct volcano — the site that inspired Jules Verne’s fictional Journey to the Center of the Earth.
Guests travel alongside A&K’s Expedition Team of accomplished, real-life explorers, from award-winning scientists to habitat conservationists, historians and recipients of the prestigious Polar Medal. Count on their insight and guidance, learning about the geology of the region and wildlife on Zodiac cruises, as well as fascinating lectures about the culture and how people live in these remote environments. A&K’s dedicated Photo Coach encourages guests to hone their skills with lectures and hands-on workshops for both experts and budding photographers alike, in one of the world’s most photogenic settings.
For travellers planning further into the future, Abercrombie & Kent has expanded its 2022-23 portfolio of Luxury Expedition CruisesSM to 13 voyages, including Japan, Australia’s Kimberley, the Baltic Sea, Italy, Greece, as well as new expeditions around the British Isles and Indonesia. These immersive coastal journeys, limited by A&K to no more than 148 guests, are led by an incomparable Expedition Team that includes archaeologists, botanists, ornithologists, geologists and historians.
Cruising the Enchanted Isles: Scotland, Ireland & England (Aug 26-Sep 8, 2022)
Voyage beyond the mainland to see spectacular coastlines, natural landscapes and historic treasures aboard the exclusively chartered ‘Le Champlain.’ Discover the velvet-green Orkney archipelago, rich in Viking heritage, and ancient sites such as the Ring of Brodgar and 5,000-year-old Skara Brae, one of Western Europe’s best-preserved Stone Age settlements. Explore the wild Hebrides Islands, home to Scotland’s own “Stonehenge,” and UNESCO-designated St. Kilda, inhabited for more than 2,000 years. Visit remote Skellig Michael, Luke Skywalker’s Jedi Temple in the Star Wars saga. See the base of the Cliffs of Moher closeup on a Zodiac excursion. Enjoy guided landings and walks through birding havens, visits to legendary castles and whiskey distilleries, as well as a pre-cruise stay in Edinburgh and a two-night, post-cruise stay in London. 14 days from $15,995 with early booking discount (was $17,995).
South Pacific Voyage: Komodo, Papua & Great Barrier Reef (Nov 21-Dec 7, 2022)
Discover the tribal traditions, tropical seascapes and natural wonders of the paradisiacal South Pacific aboard the luxurious yacht ‘Le Laperouse.’ Begin with a two-night pre-cruise stay in Bali. Explore Komodo National Park, with its wondrous marine ecosystem and rare namesake dragon. Meet the indigenous Takpala people of Alor Island. Enjoy wildlife and nature walks, Zodiac excursions, and local village visits on the spice island of Maluku, legendary Papua and the Great Barrier Reef. Enjoy leisurely days at sea and relaxing on white-sand beaches, as well as opportunities to snorkel or scuba dive in secluded bays, including West Papua’s Triton Bay, home to more fish and coral species than anywhere else on the planet. 17 days from $16,995 with early booking discount (was $19,995).
All-Inclusive Luxury Exploration, the A&K Way
Travellers appreciate the all-inclusive nature of A&K Luxury Expedition Cruises, from every meal and unlimited house drinks, to complimentary Wi-Fi, complimentary Traveller’s Valet® laundry service, gratuities, transfers, port charges and shore excursions. Many cruises feature city visits such as St. Petersburg, Florence, Athens and Osaka, with guided tours and luxury stays in memorable hotels.
Abercrombie & Kent selects the ideal small expedition ship for each itinerary, chartering the most advanced yachts to offer an unmatched experience. These include small ships that can go where larger ships can’t: ‘Le Champlain’ in Iceland, the Baltic Sea and British Isles; ‘Le Bougainville’ in the Mediterranean; ‘Le Laperouse’ in the South Pacific and ‘Le Soleal’ in Japan. The eco-friendly ‘Le Lyrial’ and ‘L’Austral’ in Antarctica and the Arctic are 1C ice class rated and are equipped with cutting-edge technology to operate with minimal impact on the fragile environment.
In keeping with the private-yacht-like ambiance, Abercrombie & Kent limits capacity to approximately 80% — no voyage exceeds 199 guests and most cultural journeys no more than 148 – ensuring each stateroom and suite has a private balcony. This affords the utmost in luxury, complete with butler service in all suites (an A&K exclusive), and an intimate 1 to 1.3 staff-to-guest ratio. The same commitment to added space is also reflected on shore excursions, with Zodiac boats limited to just 8 guests and coaches filled to only 60% capacity.
Onboard, strict protocols for health and safety reflect best practices for cleanliness and disinfection established by the World Health Organization (WHO). In addition to constant and systematic cleaning and sanitizing of all areas on board — and stringent management of air circulation with a UV sterilization system — lounge areas and dining rooms have been reconfigured to insure physical distancing. A doctor and nurse are available 24/7 and have access to advanced hospital equipment and isolation areas.
Book With Confidence
With A&K’s new, more flexible booking policy, travellers can reserve any A&K Luxury Expedition Cruise by July 31, 2021 (for travel through December 31, 2022) and have the flexibility to change travel plans up to 15 days prior to departure for a COVID-19-related reason.
For more information on Iceland Cruise: Circumnavigating the Land of Fire & Ice and A&K’s portfolio of Luxury Expedition Cruises, go to https://www.abercrombiekent.com/lec30, call 800.554.7094 to speak with an A&K Travel Consultant or contact your travel professional.