Honningsvag Cruises, Norway
SHORE EXCURSIONS View all excursions
Keep an eye out for grazing reindeer as you make your way out to the North Cape, Europe’s most northerly point. As you leave Honningsvag behind, you’ll notice a barren landscape is the hallmark of the windswept Arctic Circle. To the untrained eye it may look as if there’s little in the way of vegetation - but in actual fact it’s a botanist’s dream. Over 200 species of plants grow here. The North Cape itself is an enormous rock with a steep wall climbing over 307 metres from the Arctic Ocean. Surprisingly, it’s got a shopping area and a 225° widescreen cinema. It’s at this cinema you’ll get chance to watch a 20-minute presentation showing the jaw-dropping scenery through the changing seasons. If you’d prefer though, you can spend your time taking photos and shopping for souvenirs. On your way back to the ship, you’ll pay a quick visit to a traditional Sami Camp for a chance to take more snaps.
You’ll meet, and eat the mighty king crab on this trip. One of Norway’s most famous exports, this sought-after crustacean is actually native to Alaska. A Russian sea-science experiment saw thousands of crabs dunked in Slavic seas in the sixties, only to turn up in Norway ten years later – maybe they were making their way home, en masse. After kitting-up and completing a safety briefing, you’ll head for Sarnesfjorden on a deep-sea raft. You’ll stop to check crab traps set far below the surface and, of course, to collect the catch. King crabs can measure anything up to two metres from one side of their shell to the other, but it’s rare to catch such a monster in a trap. Instead your so-called ‘wee ones’ will weigh-in at three to seven kilos - which is still the same as several bags of sugar. You’ll come ashore at Lavvocamp where you’ll prepare and tuck into your very own catch of the day.
This tour gives you an access-all-areas pass to the beautiful island of Magerøya. It’s full of vast, icy lakes and sprawling greenery, and you’ll board an all-terrain vehicle to tackle the rugged interiors. First of all, you’ll be given helmets and gloves alongside a safety briefing, before you’re let lose in pairs on the terrain. You’ll follow a guide through the city of Honningsvåg first of all, before heading off on a craggy gravel path. As you bump along the track, you’ll make your way up to Nato Mountain, and there’ll be stops en route so your guide can give you the inside scoop on the area’s history and wildlife. The drive comes to an end in the village of Sarnes, and you’ll visit a traditional Sami tent to refuel. Sip coffee made over an open fire and warm up with cosy reindeer skins beneath you – it’s a great snapshot into the life of the nomadic Sami people.