Volcano brings an eruption of interest in cruises to Iceland

//Volcano brings an eruption of interest in cruises to Iceland

ash-cloud-pic-reuters-797003517.jpgThere can be few sights more spectacular than a volcanic eruption, and while the ash cloud from Iceland may be disrupting UK flights today, cruises to the island this summer will be unaffected.
Even if the cruise companies don’t set up their own excursions, there will no doubt be plenty of enterprising taxi drivers waiting on the quayside at Reykjavik to take passengers on the 90-minute drive to the Eyjafjallajokull volcano which is causing all the problems.
The earliest opportunity to cruise to Iceland from the UK will be on Page & Moy’s Athena, which sails from Harwich on May 14 and after calling at two ports in Norway before four calls in Iceland – Reykjavik being the last on May 23. Details on the Page & Moy website.
Seabourn Sojourn, which leaves Dover on June 6, will be in Reykjavik on June 11, and also visits Heimaey, which was evacuated in 1973 when the port was threatened by an eruption which eventually increased the length of the island from 11 square kilometres to almost 13.5 square kilometres. Cruise details here.
Marco Polo, now being operated by Cruise and Maritime Voyages, sails from Tilbury on June 22 and will be in Reykjavik on June 27 and will also be sailing round Surtsey, a small island created by a volcanic eruption in 1963. Sister ship Ocean Countess departs from Leith on July 12 for a 12-night cruise which also includes a visit to Surtsey and a day in Reykjavik on July 17. Details here.
P&O has three cruises which will reach Iceland this summer as part of voyages which also visit Norway , and all departing from Southampton. Dates are: Oriana , June 2; Aurora, June 18; Arcadia, June 19. More details at P&O’s website.
The boutique ship Ocean Princess leaves Dover on June 25 for an 18-day voyage to New York, calling at Reykjavik on July 3 – and it’s unlikely that flights home from the US will still be affected by then. Big sister Crown Princess sails from Southampton on July 29 on a 12-day voyage to Reykjavik and then on to the fjords.
One of the most interesting cruises to Iceland will be on Saga Pearl II which departs from Dover on June 28 and will call at six ports on the island, including Heimaey and Reykjavik, during the 14-night voyage. Sister ship Saga Ruby leaves Dover on June 30 for a 19-night voyage to Greenland, which also visits Reykjavik. Saga cruises are for the over-50s only.
Spirit of Adventure has a 14-night cruise to explore the geological wonders of Iceland, departing from Dover on July 14, and calling at Seydisfjord, Akureyri, Isafjord, Reykjavik and Heimaey.
Holland America Lines’ Prinsendam, which makes a two-day visit to London on July 23 and 24 then sails via Rosyth to Reykjavik and two other Icelandic ports. The 22-day cruise also visits Spitsbergen before ending in Amsterdam.
Eminent vulcanologist Dr Peter Cattermole, who has lectured at the universities of Wales and Sheffield, will be on board Swan Hellenic’s Minerva when she sails from Dover on July 28 on a 16-day cruise to the land of ice and fire, visiting Reykjavik on August 3.
For a one-way trip, there’s a nine-night cruise on MV Discovery leaving Harwich on July 29, with flights home to the UK from Reykjavik on August 6. The ship spends two nights in port at Reyykjavik before heading off to Greenland and then back to Harwich, so there are also options for a full 23-night round-trip.
Finally in this round-up – which does not claim to be comprehensive – are two cruises on Fred Olsen’s Black Watch. The first, of 15 nights, leaves Southampton on August 7 and heads first for Greenland, returning to the UK via Isafjordur and Reykjavik. The second option is a 12-nighter departing on September 5 and visiting Iceland and Norway.

By | 2017-06-15T16:00:29+00:00 15 April 2010|Cruise Destinations|2 Comments

About the Author:

John Honeywell is a travel writer specialising in cruise ships and cruise travel. Winner of CLIA UK's Contribution to Cruise award 2017.


  1. Dee 16 April 2010 at 10:04 pm - Reply

    I read last week that a French company called Compagnie du Ponant, (luxury yacht cruises) has itinerary in Iceland too this year.
    Its ship Le Diamant (a cool expedition ship) will travel to Iceland in July and August.
    Their newest ship (I think..Le Boreal)coming out next month, also has itinerary in Iceland. Two sailings in July of this year. Sounds really neat! Check ’em out. Here’s their website. http://www.ponant.com
    Ciao ciao!

  2. Ryan 4 September 2012 at 10:45 am - Reply

    Cruising to Iceland is growing in popularity and 2013 is set to be the best year yet, plenty of deals available on http://www.cruise.co.uk at the moment , best deals however are last minute deals!

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