Discover the most beautiful of the Scottish Isles and cross the Arctic Circle to reach the frozen lands of Spitsbergen Island on this 12 day cruise. From Dublin, you head north and stop at several of the British Isles and the Orkney Islands. Further north, you will marvel at the mysterious charm of the Lofoten archipelago and then onto Spitsbergen, an island that is emblematic of the Arctic lands, where you will be able to explore Hornsund, one of the island’s most beautiful fjords, boasting an impressive glacier front.

Day 1DublinEmbark on your voyage
Day 2Hebrides & Isle of MullInner Hebrides, Iona and Tobermory, Isle of Mull
Day 3Sailing along Sky BridgeIsle of Sky, lakes, waterfalls, sandy coves and cliffs, sea eagles, dolphins, whales, seals
Day 4KirkwallTankerness house, gold stone cathedral, highland distillery
Day 5Lerwick, Shetland IslandsGeopark Shetland, Shetland museum
Day 6At SeaActivities on board
Day 7Lofoten, NorwayReine, Leknes, Jagged coastline, alpine summits, sandy beaches, fjords
Day 8Tromso, NorwaySecluded Norwegian town, Arctic cathedral
Day 9Bjornoya (Bear Island)Meteorological station, skuas, guillemots, puffins, tridactyl gulls, petrels, little auks
Day 10Isbukta, SpitsbergenVasil’evbreen glacier, Stellingfjellet, guillemot colonies
Day 11Horn Glacier, SpitsbergenHornsund fjord, 8 great glaciers
Day 12Longyearbyen to LondonDisembark and take your flight to London
Ponant Scotland to Spitsbergen

Ship Offering This Itinerary


L’Austral (200 guests) was launched in May, 2011 and is a sister ship to Le Boreal and Le Soleal. She features 132 staterooms offering elegant design as well as innovative state-of-the-art marine technology. The vessel boasts a convenient layout, aided by three passenger elevators. She offers a single seating dining room, al fresco dining, an outdoor heated pool, and a modern lecture facility and theatre, as well as an ample and comfortable gathering area and library.

Day 1 Dublin, Ireland

Dublin ponant

The Irish capital stretches along the banks of the Liffey to Dublin bay, on the East coast of Ireland. Discover Ireland’s lively pedestrian district Temple Bar. Its cobbled streets are brimming with fabulous shops, pubs and arts centres. Visit Trinity College, famous for its 18th century library, stroll along Grafton Street where in one of its famous tea shops you might like to try a delicious scone and clotted cream served hot with jam. Not far from here, the majestic O’Connell bridge leads you to the avenue with the same name, on which Spire, a luminous contemporary sculpture presides. In the afternoon board your ship and settle into your suite. Enjoy dinner on board as you meet your fellow travellers and the crew.

Day 2 Iona, Hebrides and Tobermory, Isle of Mull

Duart Castle, Isle of Mull Scotland

In sunny weather, arriving on the Isle of Iona, part of the Inner Hebrides islands, is a stunningly beautiful experience. It is here that St Columba landed from Ireland in 563 and undertook to establish Christianity in Scotland. Now an abbey, the island’s true spiritual centre stands where the ancient monastery founded by the Irish missionary was built. Many kings of Scotland, including the legendary Macbeth, are buried in the nearby cemetery.

Located at the northernmost tip of the lovely Isle of Mull, Tobermory has to be one of the most beautiful natural seaports on Scotland’s West Coast. Founded in 1788, this ancient fishing village has been converted to a leisure port highly appreciated today for its surroundings and the quiet charm it exudes. The row of many-storied houses on the hillside, illuminating the harbour with their vibrant colours make for some wonderful photographs. Although the real spectacle is outdoors, a visit to the interesting Mull Museum dedicated the local history and the exhibitions at the An Tobar art gallery is well worth the time.

Day 3 Sky Bridge, Portree, Isle of Skye

Isle of Sky Scotland

The Isle of Skye is the largest in the Inner Hebrides archipelago. Nicknamed the island of the mist, its romantic and magical landscapes have inspired the greatest authors and filmmakers, such as the poet Walter Scott or Virginia Woolf. The almost deserted interior of the island and its coast show off the beauty of the Scottish Highlands: rocky outcrops, basalt columns, hills and wide vales covered in peat bog and heather, lakes, waterfalls, fine sandy coves and cliffs. You may be lucky enough to see a sea eagle perched on their summits, watching the waves beneath which otters, sea lions, seals, dolphins and whales may be hiding.

Nestling in the crux of a gorgeous bay, Portree reflects the magnificence of the grandiose Isle of Skye as well as being its main town. Apart from the charm of its colourful houses, the town’s outstanding location on the banks of a loch makes it a very pleasant place to be. From its colourful harbour bustling with local craftsmen’s shops, you can take in a stunning view of the surrounding hills. Before trekking through the wilderness and drinking in the natural beauty of the Isle of Skye, check out some of the beautiful images in the Aros Centre.

Day 4 Kirkwall, Scotland

St Magnus Cathedral, Kirkwall, Scotland

Capital of the Orkney archipelago, Kirkwall, which means “church bay”, is an ideal stopover before continuing on to the Northern Isles. Sheltered in a wide bay, the lively town welcomes the visitor with its charming paved alleyways edged by old houses and craft shops. Tankerness House, the oldest homestead in the town, is a must-see landmark. But the true architectural treasure of the aptly named Kirkwall is none other than its remarkable red and gold stone cathedral. As whisky is inseparable from Scotland’s identity, stop at the Highland Park Distillery for a highly immersive visit.

Day 5 Lerwick, Shetland Islands

Lerwick Shetland Islands

The small and charming capital of the Shetland Islands, with its sea front of old houses and narrow streets, offering travellers its old districts and a warm port atmosphere. Geopark Shetland, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is located to the north. Incredibly well-preserved archaeological sites and ruins prove that the islands’ occupation dates back to the first Neolithic colonies. The Shetland Museum and Archives recounts the Shetlands’ history of heritage and culture: Lerwick’s abundant waters were even fished by the Dutch in the past.

Day 6 At Sea

During your day at sea, make the most of the many services and activities on board. Treat yourself to a moment of relaxation in the spa or stay in shape in the fitness centre. Depending on the weather take a dip in the swimming pool. This day without a port of call will also be an opportunity to enjoy the conferences or shows proposed on board, to do some shopping in the boutique or to get some photography advice from the expert photographers in their dedicated space. You will be able to visit the ship’s upper deck to admire the spectacle of the waves and perhaps be lucky enough to observe marine species. A truly enchanted interlude, combining comfort, rest and entertainment.

Day 7 Reine and Leknes, Lofoten

Lofoten Islands Norway

Way beyond the Arctic Circle, Lofoten Islands are considered to be in “another world”. A jewel of nature in its most pristine state, this archipelago with its jagged coastline with high alpine summits, sandy beaches, green prairies and fjords of a deep blue, where countless bird colonies make their nests. Whether you visit Å, or Nusjford, listed by UNESCO, enjoy authentic and memorable moments.

Day 8 Tromso, Norway


In the north of the Arctic circle you’ll discover Tromsø, a secluded town located in the county of Troms. Norwegians call it the “Paris of the north”. You’ll soon see why when you discover its extensive neoclassical architectural heritage. A stunning example is the Arctic cathedral, a major monument whose stylistic purity echoes the outline of the mountains surrounding the town.

Day 9 Sail Past Bjornoya (Bear Island)

Bear Island, Norway

Halfway between Norway and Spitsbergen, you will sail not far from the coastlines of Bjørnøya, the southernmost island of Svalbard. From your ship, observe this isolated piece of land discovered in 1596 by the Dutch navigator Willem Barents, then looking for the Northwest Passage. Following a tough fight between a polar bear and the members of the expedition, he dubbed the place Bear Island. Regularly covered by a thick layer of fog, Bjørnøya shelters a meteorological station built in 1923, which is still in operation. Declared a nature reserve in 2002, the island is above all home to an enormous colony of sea birds: skuas, guillemots, puffins, Tridactyl gulls, petrels, gulls and little auks all coexist here.

Day 10 Isbukta, Spitsbergen

Nestling on the south-east point of the island of Spitsbergen, this small bay shelters an immense glacier, the Vasil’evbreen, whose front is more than 20 kilometres long. This is an opportunity for an unforgettable Zodiac outing. If the conditions allow it, you will be able to land directly at the foot of this majestic place and walk on the first section of the glacier. Depending on the ice conditions, you may be able to approch Stellingfjellet, home to one of the largest guillemot colonies on the archipelago.

Day 11 Horn Glacier, Spitsbergen


Today you may visit Hornsund fjord which is considered to be Svalbard’s southernmost fjord, it is especially reputed to be its most stunning: at the end of its vast bay, 8 great glaciers slowly make their way down to the sea before giving way to the many icebergs elegantly drifting along its cold and mysterious waters.

Day 12 Longyearbyen, Spitsbergen – London, England


Longyearbyen is the capital of the Norwegian Svalbard archipelago, located on Svalbard’s main island, and is the northernmost territorial capital on the planet. With winter temperatures dropping to below 40°C, the landscapes of this mining town are unique. The glaciers, the mountains stretching as far as the eye can see and the untouched nature, make you feel like you’re in completely unexplored territory. After disembarkation board your flight to London, England where your itinerary ends.

To book this cruise contact us on 1300 784 794 or email:

We will tailor the perfect holiday to suit your needs.