Mighty Lena and Arctic Ocean A 14-day river cruise from Yakutsk to the Arctic Circle

December 22, 2016

Mighty Lena and Arctic Ocean
Travel Russia’s Lena river — via Zhigansk, Kyusyur, Tiksi and the Lena River Delta. Untouched, Arctic scenery that barely feels like Earth.
Sail the Sakha Republic, Siberia and the Arctic Ocean, encountering indigenous people and stunning geological beauty.

 

This is an almost other-worldly adventure. As you travel further and further north on this most arresting of Russian
river cruises, lush, green fir tree forests give way to the staggering vistas of sculptural rock and ice that are the
polar tundra. Stillness, as far as the eye can see. The magical ‘white nights’ as the sun barely sets in the summer.
Midnight sun, low and orange, sitting along a horizon of ice, pale blue and lilac.
Your expert crew navigate you through this cruise on Mikhail Svetlov, your ship. The perfect way to explore these
seascapes. On board, enjoy access to an excellent program of presentations and activities, gaining insight into
the people of the Far North and their unmistakable culture.
What makes your journey unique
• Fulfil a life-long ambition. This is an opportunity to travel the
Arctic Circle, all the way to the Arctic Ocean. Take in some of the
most breathtaking, uninhabitable vistas known to man, explored
with ease by cruise ship.
• Visit an almost entirely pristine part of the world. Timeless,
stunning, near-ethereal natural beauty, these land- and
seascapes are all but untouched by human beings.
• Gain insight into Shamanism, the indigenous religion of the
region. Experience mystical ceremonies and learn about this
ancient belief system—a world of gods, demons and spirits and
their influence.
Dates

24 Jul – 06 Aug 2017 (14 days)
• 07 Aug – 20 Aug 2017 (14 days)

 

Itinerary
Day 1, Yakutsk
All aboard! Welcome. You’re about to set sail on a journey to explore some of the most spectacular scenery on
Earth.
But first, settle in and relax on board Mikhail Svetlov, your floating hotel. At sunset, you’ll cast off. The spectacular
Lena Pillars await.
Overnight on board. Meals included: dinner. (D)
Day 2, Lena Pillars
An unforgettable start to the day with a shamanic welcome ceremony, surrounded by the epic Lena Pillars.
Ritualistic dancing and traditional purification rites take place at the foot of these spectacular rock pillars.
The gigantic, prehistoric, sculptural rocks of the UNESCO Lena Pillars Nature Park are your backdrop for the day,
before you set sail and head downstream.
Overnight on board. Meals included: breakfast (B), lunch (L) and dinner (D).
Day 3, The Buotama and Central Yakut Lowland
Incredible scenery. Today, you reach the Yakutian Central Yakut Lowland, with its expansive network of seas and
swamps. Deep, dark basins and sprawling, snowy mountains taken in from the deck, as you glide across the
stillness of untouched rivers and seas.
This once-in-a-lifetime scenery is accompanied by a variety of presentations on topics such as the history of the
Yakut people.
Overnight on board. (BLD)
Day 4, When Vilyuy and Lena meet
Over 1,600 miles long, the Vilyuy River is the longest tributary of the Lena. You picnic at the mouth of the Vilyuy,
sampling the local specialty, Ukha fish soup, and experience the exhilarating and crashing dynamism of these two
epic rivers meeting.
Overnight on board. (BLD)
Day 5, Zhigansk
The Arctic Circle is the world’s most northern circle of latitude. It’s an extreme, stunning, alien environment. Your
cruise ship is the perfect way to explore.
Today you’ll gain fascinating insight into rural life at Zhigansk—a village rooted in hunting, fishing and
farming—visiting its authentic Yakutian log huts and museum.
Overnight on board. (BLD)

Day 6, Kyusyur
Kyusyur is a tiny village inside the Arctic Circle, with a population of less than 1,500. The people here are proud to
share their story with you.
Reindeer graze, women make clothing of fur and beads, musicians play and you look across the untouched
flatlands. The atmosphere is utterly haunting.
Overnight on board. (BLD)
Day 7, Tiksi
Ice floes. Zig-zig shapes of ice, floating across the water’s surface, mile after mile. Blue, white, ice, mist and
stillness. Silence. The kind of scene you only see in a film. Except this isn’t film. You’re approaching the Arctic
Ocean.
Learn about the customs and traditions of these lands. Walk across the eerie tundra. Land, grass, snowscapes
beneath a stunning sky. No trees, the land is too barren here. It’s hard to believe you’re on planet Earth.
Take a trip to the port town of Tiksi, the most northern point of the trip. A striking, Soviet landscape, so often
bathed in the ethereal Northern lights. Visit the polar museum and ponder the very uniqueness of this trip.
Overnight on board. (BLD)
Day 8, Trip through the Lena Delta
Today will be one of the most dramatic days of scenery of your life. This is the Lena River Delta. One of the
largest and most stunning rivers on Earth.
You see the miles of hundreds of tiny islands, like a blue and green patchwork of lily pads and mirrors, stretching
before you. Your ship eases through the Lena Pipe, a passage where the banks of the river rise up in over
400-yard vertical crags. In some places, these hang over the water and narrow the river to a width of just over a
mile. As your vessel masterfully navigates these striking natural phenomena, you are struck by a sense of awe at
these vast, organic sculptures.
In the afternoon, learn Russian and gain insights into the geological features of these lands.
Overnight on Overnight on board. (BLD)
Day 9, Mouth of the Siktyakh River
Spend the afternoon with the fishing families of the Siktyakh River. Share fairy tales and legends with the folk of
the Far North. People from all over the world, coming together in simple humility, the dramatic, prehistoric Arctic
as your scenery. A deeply moving experience.
Overnight onboard. (BLD)
Day 10, Out of the Arctic Circle
The Arctic Circle is the most northerly of the five major circles of latitude. You are journeying where few have
gone before. Seafarer, it’s time to celebrate like Gods of the sea, with a King Neptune festival! Cheers!
Overnight on board. (BLD)
Day 11, The 40 Islands
The 40 Islands are situated between Zhigansk and the Vilyuy. Sail past dozens of unspoiled islands, thick with fir
trees, perfect snow and, if you’re lucky, swooping eagles and curious bears. A spectacular, untouched vista of
pure peace.

Then a Russian lesson. You’re becoming quite good! There will also be a captivating presentation on
Shamanism—the indigenous religion of the region—a world of gods, demons and spirits.
Overnight on board. (BLD)
Day 12, A Day with Friends on the Lena
You’ll sail along one of the prettiest stretches of the Lena today. As the end of the voyage approaches, mark the
end of this spectacular experience in Yakutian style. Around a Yakutian barbecue and symbolic campfire of
friendship on the river bank, sing songs as international as your new friends.
Overnight on board. (BLD)
Day 13, Sottintsy
At lunchtime you moor at Sottintsy. Take a trip to the intriguing Druzhba (Friendship) open-air ethnographic
museum, complete with beautiful wooden replicas of historic houses and churches.
In the evening, you are warmly invited to cocktails with the captain.
Overnight on board. (BLD)
Day 14, Farewell to Yakutia
Breakfast and then goodbye, Yakutia. Transfer to the airport and fly back home.
Unspoiled and awe-inspiring. It’s been like a trip to another planet.
(B)

 

Highlights of the journey
• The river Lena’s Mariner menu, featuring authentic local specialties.
• The White Nights of the Arctic Circle—near 24 hours of daylight in this most northerly region.
• The legendary and majestic Lena Pillars
• Shamanic ceremony.
• The Lena River Delta and the Arctic Ocean.
• Ethnographical open-air museum, Druzhba (Friendship), in Sottintsy.
• Authentic folklore performances.
• Taiga picnic and a Yakutian barbecue and bonfire evening.
Rates include
• 13 nights on board the Michail Svetlov in the category booked.
• All meals as per itinerary (B = breakfast, L = lunch, D = dinner).
• Comprehensive excursion and sightseeing program as per itinerary.
• Exciting entertainment program including lectures on the Republic of Sakha, research expeditions to Russia,
relations between Russia and her neighbors, Russia’s greatest rivers.
• On board library and video collection specializing in books, feature films and documentaries about the region.
• On board Russian lessons.
• Folk performances.
• On board, experienced Lernidee cruise director.
• On board tour management.

Not included

Flights, visa fees, tips and gratuities.
Entry requirements
• You may require a visa, depending on your nationality. Please check with your local embassy.
• No vaccinations required.
Dates & Prices
24 Jul – 06 Aug 2017
Main Deck 5,400 US-$ waiting list
1,210 US-$ Single supplement
Upper Deck 5,630 US-$ waiting list
1,210 US-$ Single supplement
07 Aug – 20 Aug 2017
Main Deck 5,400 US-$ bookable
1,210 US-$ Single supplement
Upper Deck 5,630 US-$ bookable
1,210 US-$ Single supplement