Daily Expedition Reports

Browse photos & daily reports sent from the field every day

Lastest Expedition Reports

  • Tracy Arm - Ford’s Terror Wilderness

    After a misty evening sail away from Juneau, we woke to clear skies in Tracy Arm – Ford’s Terror Wilderness, offering spectacular views of even the tallest snow-capped peaks within the wilderness. The Wilderness Act of 1964 defines a designated wilderness area as a place “where man remains but a visitor.” On today’s exploration of the raw and dynamic nature of the waterfall-adorned fiord landscape of Tracy Arm with an up-close Zodiac visit to Sawyer Glacier, we truly felt like visitors to this wild place. What a wonderful welcome to Southeast Alaska for this week’s expedition!

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  • Fakarava, Tuamotu, French Polynesia

    At daybreak National Geographic Orion entered the lagoon of Fakarava, the second largest atoll in French Polynesia.  We spent the morning cycling or strolling in the small town of Rotoava, and the afternoon was devoted to snorkeling, diving, or visiting a traditional Polynesian sacred site called a marae.  At dinner we enjoyed a festive and very delicious Polynesian barbecue on deck.  We finished off our full and rewarding day with stargazing; after we gathered on the ship’s bow, the lights were turned off, and we had fantastic views of planets, stars, and constellations in these southern skies.

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  • Hood Island

    This is the oldest island in the Galapagos; it has one of the largest amounts of endemic species in the whole archipelago. Amongst them, the most tropical albatross in the world.

  • Floreana Island

    Today, we woke up to a pre-breakfast hike on Floreana Island. This is one the first inhabited islands in this archipelago, with the richest and most mysterious human history in the Galapagos. However,  during this hike, the real stars of the show were flamingoes! This visiting site has a lagoon were flamingoes congregate for feeding, mating, and nesting. We were very fortunate to see several of them interacting. 

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  • Woodfjord and Northern Spitsbergen, Svalbard

    Our last day in Svalbard started early. At ten minutes past midnight, our expedition leader, Lucho, made the call on the PA system that we had arrived at Cape Fanshawe.

  • Sailing into the Aegean Sea, Greece

    No matter the length of a Lindblad Expeditions-National Geographic journey, the end always seems to arrive suddenly. Nine days ago, the Sea Cloud welcomed aboard a diverse group of travelers, most of whom had never met, in Dubrovnik. A little more than one week and four countries later, our final day of sailing dawns warm and clear upon a vessel filled with new friendships and the shared experiences of a lifetime. 

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  • Misty Fjords National Monument

    Wow! Another sunny day! It was actually hot sitting on the bow looking for wildlife this afternoon! The final day of our expedition was truly wonderful. We woke up near a very interesting geologic formation, a volcanic plug rising from the middle of a deep channel. We spent the day in Rudyerd Bay, a stunning arm of the fjord with vertical cliffs, lush meadows, and wildflowers. Kayakers boarded the kayaks from the ship's fantail and paddled on pristine quiet waters. Pure blue skies arched overhead, pigeon guillemots winged low on the water, and a mother bear and cub strolled through the meadow. Expedition landing crafts headed out for tours, stopping to check out a variety of wildflowers like red columbine and carnivorous butterworts. We stopped beneath the "owl face" which gives Owl Pass its name. This is a narrow constricted area with a sheer cliff and a couple of large rockfall zones which appear as eyes on the cliffs. The expedition landing crafts paused beneath towering waterfalls pouring from the snowpack above, and visited a massive pile of snow with a huge tunnel melted in the center. The kids had a chance to drive the expedition landing crafts with one of our officers and returned to the ship with massive smiles.

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  • Apataki, Tuamotu, French Polynesia

    National Geographic Orion transited east through the Tuamotus from Rangiroa to Apataki overnight, arriving near our destination at first light and proceeding through the pass into the lagoon before breakfast. It’s always delightful to wake up in a new location, and today was particularly special as the ship has never visited this island before. A low-lying coral atoll, Apataki, is at its maximum four meters above sea level and hosts dense stretches of coconut palms separated by open beaches as well as many shallow channels allowing water to move between the lagoon and the open ocean. We enjoyed a busy, sunny day exploring both ashore and afloat, including natural history and photography walks.

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  • Isle of Skye and Kyle of Lochalsh

    Our morning sail brought us to the Isle of Skye, where we pulled in at Armadale and set off for the Clan Donald Centre. The Centre’s Museum provides an excellent history of the Lord of the Isles, starting the story with the ancient kingdom of Dalriada, which lasted from about 500-1000AD. Dalriada included lands in Ireland and Scotland, and is considered by many to be the birthplace of modern Scotland. In ensuing years, the Lord of the Isles developed, a line of nobility from a mixed Viking-Gaelic ancestry that ruled over the west coast and islands of Scotland until the 15th century. 

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  • Southern Hinlopen Strait / Torellneset

    As the bridge began to fill with early risers, a dense fog covered the sea. We were underway to the Austfonna, the third largest ice cap in the world. We were getting close, and small pieces of ice were starting to give way to larger, more prominent pieces, as the National Geographic Explorer moved ever closer. Our constant companions of fulmars, kittiwakes, and guillemots made continuous flights around our ship, and as we awakened from our sleepy state, the realization of where we are settled in.  

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

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