By Guy Dundas

Boris Wise polar bear One World Exp low resA NEW shorter cruise of Canada’s Northwest Passage is hoped to appeal to Aussies looking for something more than the commonly sailed Inside Passage and St Lawrence Seaway. Located in the lesser travelled Nunavut province above Manitoba and Quebec, The Northwest Passage remains relatively unknown to the Australian travellers, according to One Ocean Expeditions director Reinoud Daniels. 

The company operates two 98-passenger expedition ships – Akademik Sergey Vavilov which offers sailings to Antarctica, and sister ship Akademik Ioffe which sails from July to September through Canada’s Maritime region and Nunavut province in the Arctic Circle.

With the release of One Ocean’s 2016 program comes a seven-night voyage focused of Baffin Island, Bellot Strait and Prince of Wales Island, operating roundtrip from Resolute.

The operator also continues to offer a nine-night voyage of the Maritimes and a 12-night itinerary between Iqaluit and Cambridge Bay in the Arctic. However the new week-long cruise focuses on areas with the greatest concentration of wildlife. “We’ve given the season some variety,” Daniels said. The seven-night cruise is more “sharply priced” (from CAD$6195ppts), which he says “may open up another market”.

Daniels suggested that travel agents could pair the voyage with other Canadian content such as a Rocky Mountains self-drive or a coach or rail tour. All itineraries remain flexible.

“We have an idea of the sail plan, but the beauty of expedition cruising is you can throw it out the window. We take advantage of wildlife opportunities [and] that is the attraction of expedition cruising,” he said.

Daniels also touched on awareness barriers which, he said, were limiting growth from the local market.

“What we find somewhat challenging is the Antarctic sells incredibly well out of Australia. For many, when they think of Canada they think of the Rocky Mountains, Niagara and the Great Lakes. It is just educating them on looking a bit further north and the opportunities there,” he said.

One Ocean is represented locally by Richard Cunningham who can be contacted on 1300 368 123.

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