The voyage of a lifetime: An expedition cruise around the rugged rock

Rich with fascinating history, captivating culture and some of the most breathtaking natural beauty in the world, Atlantic Canada offers endless opportunities to explore, dream and discover. Answer the call of the sea and explore the splendour of the rugged rock from the coastline.

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The M/V Polar Star expedition ship offers an incredible 10-day itinerary that takes passengers around the extraordinary coast of Newfoundland and Labrador through to the maritime province of Nova Scotia. Departing in the heart of autumn, the natural scenery on this tour is shrouded in vivid fall colours, with crisp, fresh air to enjoy from the outstanding viewing deck. With expert scientists and naturalists on-board, and only 100 passengers, the M/V Polar Star provides an intimate setting to enjoy the magnificent surroundings.


The ship sets sail from North America’s oldest city, St. John’s, Newfoundland, before retracing the steps of explorer John Cabot in the town of Bonavista, where modern North America began. Take a stroll around the fishing village and enjoy a tour of the replica of Cabot’s ship to get a glimpse into 1497 when he first discovered the new world.

Travel even further back in time with a visit to L’Anse Aux Meadows at the Northern tip of Newfoundland. This UNESCO World Heritage Site is the only authenticated Viking settlement in North America. For a closer look into this era, explore Norstead, a replica Viking port of trade which is filled with artisan markets, a 54-foot replica Viking ship and costumed interpreters who bring this fascinating attraction to life.


Past the preserved fishing community of Battle Harbour, the expedition continues to the world-famous Gros Morne National Park, the second UNESCO World Heritage Site on this tour. Besides the immense natural beauty of this area, the park is known for the Tablelands – a 600 metre high plateau that forms one of the world’s best examples of ancient rock exposed from the earth’s interior. With 239 species of birds as well as mammals such as moose, caribou, black bear and arctic hare, not to mention plenty of exceptional hiking trails – Gros Morne has something for the nature-lover in all of us!

Leaving the Polar Star behind, travellers set-off on one of several on-shore excursions using 12-passenger zodiac cruises, gliding up river to a local community in the Codroy River Valley. Continue back to the ship for a journey to the Grey River Fjord with breathtaking scenery made up of lush forests, rugged mountains and sandy beaches. At the head of the dramatic fjord, discover the quaint village of Francois and enjoy a “kitchen party” where you’re invited to let loose and immerse yourself into an exciting local tradition.


On the last leg of this journey, spend the day discovering St. Pierre, France – a tiny piece of Europe nestled in amongst the rugged rock. Enjoy the charm of French culture with plenty of opportunities to sample some delicious French specialties. Moving on to Louisbourg, explore the town’s Fortress which was built by the French in 1719 in their struggle for North America. Today, the reconstructed building brings travellers back to what life was like in Louisbourg centuries ago.