Daily Expedition Reports

Browse photos & daily reports sent from the field every day




Lastest Expedition Reports

  • Mud Bay, Inian Islands

    After a relatively bumpy night of sailing down Lynn Canal in windy conditions, guests awoke aboard the National Geographic Sea Bird to a glassy sea surface as we cruised through Icy Strait to our first landing at Mud Bay. Mud Bay is located on the north end of Chichagof Island, part of the ABC archipelago in Southeast Alaska. The region is known for its abundance of wildlife on land, including some of the highest densities of brown bears in the world, and in the sea, where whales and other marine mammals come to feed on the cornucopia of marine life drawn to the mixing currents. 

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  • Westman Islands, Iceland

    With the guidance of Captain Aaron Wood and the local pilot, we sailed into the narrow harbor opening of Heimaey, Westman Islands, as the sun broke through the clouds. Heimaklettur, or home cliff, welcomed us with a stunning vista of Icelandic sheep balancing on sheer cliffs. 

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  • Chatham Strait and Saook Bay

    Our exploration of coastal Southeast Alaska took off with a roar not long after we departed Sitka last night, with the appearance of a brown bear sow and three cubs as well as a gray whale – a very rare visitor to the Inside Passage! A hard act to follow, but Alaska did not disappoint as we woke to our first morning aboard National Geographic Sea Lion. Our early risers were treated to a sighting of two bears shortly after 6:00 a.m., while the rest of us were able to enjoy the view of a solo bear wandering the shoreline later that day. Dall’s porpoises, harbor seals and sea otters, and a distant humpback whale also made their appearance – and all before lunch! 

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  • Chatham Strait and Saook Bay

    Our exploration of coastal Southeast Alaska took off with a roar not long after we departed Sitka last night, with the appearance of a brown bear sow and three cubs as well as a gray whale – a very rare visitor to the Inside Passage! A hard act to follow, but Alaska did not disappoint as we woke to our first morning aboard National Geographic Sea Lion. Our early risers were treated to a sighting of two bears shortly after 6:00 a.m., while the rest of us were able to enjoy the view of a solo bear wandering the shoreline later that day. Dall’s porpoises, harbor seals and sea otters, and a distant humpback whale also made their appearance – and all before lunch! 

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  • Tracy Arm Ford’s Terror Wilderness Area

    Welcome to Alaska, where rainfall nourishes coastal rainforests and snow accumulation fuels glaciers that carve mountainous geology. Seawater fills in the retreat of glaciers that have cut deep U-shaped valleys, allowing us to explore the landscape by ship. 

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  • Española Island

    It was our first full day of exploration on the islands. This island is the oldest of the group with so many things to see.

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  • Makatea

    To explain Makatea may very well be impossible. Though the South Pacific holds many islands made from the remains of coral, few have raised up so majestically out of the sea, high enough to allow the patience of time to form a limestone cave below. With every step down into the darkness, the light of the sky disappeared. Masks and snorkels were adorned, and the thrill of heading into the unknown was had by all.

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  • Floreana Island

    Today we spent the day exploring the northwestern coast of Floreana Island. During an early morning pre-breakfast excursion, we landed at Punta Cormorant where we hiked around a brackish water lagoon and had a chance to see American flamingoes and blue-footed boobies up close. Later on in the morning after our ship repositioned, we snorkeled and went for rides on the  glass-bottom boat around Champions Islet after exploring the shoreline aboard our Zodiacs. During the afternoon we repositioned to Post Office Bay, where after delivering our postcards, we had a chance to kayak and paddleboard in a mangrove area teeming with young sharks, rays and sea turtles.

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  • Haines, Alaska

    It is hard to imagine a setting more stereotypically Alaskan than this small town of 2,300 on the edge of the Chilkoot Inlet in the upper reaches of Lynn Canal. Sometime around 8,000 to 10,000 years ago, the first people arrived here, possibly by the Bering Land Bridge to the north or by sea from the south—maybe even from as far away as the Polynesian Islands.

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  • Djúpivogur, Iceland

    Today is ice day! In the land of ice and fire, this is the day we approach the extreme glacier ice landscapes. Currently, there are 269 glaciers in Iceland that cover eleven percent of the land surface, but many are rapidly melting. Nonetheless, we saw excellent examples of glacial landforms throughout the day. 

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Please note: Daily Expedition Reports (DER’s) are posted Monday-Friday only, during normal business hours.

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