Part of what makes Tim and me excited for our next trip are all the adventure activities we get to experience. And all the different types of wine we end up savoring, of course. We’re definitely not as nimble as we were 10 years ago, but that has never stopped us from finding the next thrilling escapade and going with it.
Another pair of adventurers have decided to pitch in with some fun Arctic activities just for your enjoyment. Let Agness and Cez (of eTramping fame) guide you through the icy plains of the North!
1. Glacier Hiking and Climbing
Hiking is all the proof you need that T.S. Eliot’s famous quote is true: “[It is] the journey, not the destination [that] matters.” If you want to go one step beyond, try your hand at glacier hiking in such splendid locations as the Sólheimajökull Glacier in Iceland.
Or perhaps the impressive Kangerlussuaq Glacier in Greenland might pique your interest. Especially if you’re into towering ice cubes. This is really one of those Arctic adventure activities that puts your ability and awareness to the test. It’s certainly not for the faint of heart.
Looking for adventure activities that don’t involve ice axes and climbing expertise? Swimming in the Arctic will get your heart pumping just as well. Don’t worry, most of the “swimming” is actually floating in a safe survival suit guided by experts. Certainly, some are wacky enough to go for a dip without one. At least that’s what they’re doing at Deception Island on the other side of the planet, in Antarctica.
In any case, when you’re not visiting Santa in Rovaniemi, consider the Sampo Icebreaker trip for a (n)ice swim. Well, the survival suit is a bit awkward to maneuver, but the experience is definitely worth a try. If nothing else, it’ll make for a great laugh back at home when you’re looking at the photos. Oh, and bragging rights to your friends who have never swum in the Arctic.
It’d be a shame to cruise through the Arctic and not take the chance to slide on the white, powdery plains. Wake up to the gentle rocking of the sea (or the not very gentle surfacing of a whale). Then prepare for a full day of fun snow-driven adventure activities that leave you wanting for more.
The pearly white expanses of the Arctic are breathtaking in the spring, whether you’re in Finland or Alaska. It’s also a great opportunity for wildlife spotting – and you definitely have many to choose from. Polar bears looking for seals out on the sea ice, seals loafing around with their fuzzy pups, and many others.
4. Whale Watching
No Arctic cruise is complete without the chance to spot these gentle giants. Keep a good pair of binoculars, like a pair of Wingspan Optics Spectator, at the ready for when you hear audible gasps around the cruise ship. Belugas, killer whales (also known as orcas), and even “the unicorns of the sea” (narwhals) do the rounds in this frozen part of the world.
Whale watching is also one of those adventure activities fit for the whole family. Even your little tykes can enjoy a cup of hot cocoa while staring in awe at the giant creatures disturbing the surface of the water. Keep on the lookout for dolphins in these parts as well, for they tend to hang out with whale pods.
5. Deep Sea Fishing
Norway, for example, is very bountiful when it comes to fishing. As such, it is no surprise that one of the adventure activities reserved for travelers on Arctic cruises would be deep sea fishing. Even if you’re not particularly adept at the sport, at least you’ll have a chance to compete with dolphins.
Plus, nothing makes one happier than the look of satisfaction on your kid or significant other’s face when they finally manage to land a fish. Or getting to taste your own capture in a delicious, traditional fish soup cooked by the ship chefs. Or maybe even the captain, if he wants to brag for a bit.
Many people worry that a cruise through the Arctic would be a pretty dull and expensive experience. We’ve set out to prove them wrong with all these adrenaline-pumping, breathtaking, dazzling activities. Forget what others think, set sail for the Arctic.
All the activities you mentioned are interesting, if I can afford it I would definitely join all. I;ve never done deep sea fishing, maybe I could try that. What was your fave?
Thank you, Karla, for sharing. I haven’t been to Arctic yet and my guest post is based on my research I’ve done before my trip that takes place next January. I will share my thoughts next year!! x
Claire Summers says
Norway looks pretty amazing! I’m not a big fan of the cold, I must admit. But the thought of hiking a glacier is enough motivation for me to buy a big coat and suck it up!
That looks like a fantastic trip! Did you go swimming? Seeing all that wildlife too! Just in total aww and evoking my wanderlust to go.
I feel so lucky to have visited the Canadian Arctic (a fly in Inuit community) and it was such an incredible experience. A cruise in the region would be an absolute dream way to see this super unique area of the world.
OMG just amazing and what I would love to go very soon! your imagines are totally stunning and OMG the little bears!!! thank you so much for having shared your experience!!
Thank you, Jennifer, for having me here! 🙂 I can’t wait to visit Antarctica next January and try out all of these activities! Sending my love from Gdańsk.
Rachel Elizabeth says
The Arctic looks incredible! I wouldn’t be opposed to swimming either! I went snorkeling in Iceland (in December too, haha), and it was awesome. Cold, but awesome.
Shruti Prabhu says
Not dull at all! That looks pretty amazing! I am really curious about narwhals. They are such fascinating creatures. Swimming in the Arctic on the other hand sounds a bit daunting.
Sandy N Vyjay says
“An arctic cruise”, the thought itself gets me excited. The adventure activities that you have described seem to be enough of adventure for a life time. Skiing, Glacier Hiking, swimming, whale watching, they are all exciting adventures and most of them, are not what you get to do everyday! The Northern Lights is of course another mesmerizing phenomenon that I would love to behold. You photos have captured so well the spirit of the Antarctic.
Megan Jerrard says
Incredible – we’ve just come back from an Antarctic Cruise, so next year are looking forward to taking one around the arctic. Wildlife is our biggest focus so would love to take a small adventure cruise which will allow for whale watching (your close up photo was incredible!), and it would be incredible to see a polar bear, even though I know they’re quite elusive. I’ve not tried deep sea fishing or skiing before, so perhaps this would be a great chance!
Cai Dominguez says
Swimming on cold water? wow! I wonder how long I would last. But I would definitely would love to do whale watching. That would be super awesome! and I would love to see polar bears too 🙂 Thanks for sharing your arctic experience!
Sapna Parmar says
Looks like you had a great time in Arctic Cruise! Beautiful photographs!
Leo Masley says
I don’t think swimming in the Arctic is a great idea