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Written by Savi, 8 Comments

You know we’ve loved cruises since before we started Bruised Passports. But this year we went on a cruise like no other – a cruise to the mighty Arctic North. Yes, we were degrees away from the North Pole and experienced the most remote panoramas in the world in utmost luxury.

Arctic and Antarctic Cruises are quite expensive (starting at approximate $10,000 per person). For this reason, it is better to plan well and know EXACTLY what to expect when you are booking an Arctic Cruise. So we thought we would put together a mini guide that will help you decide when and how to go on his holiday of a lifetime. You will see sights you would’ve never dreamt of seeing and we promise you will come back with memories of a lifetime.

What meals on an Arctic Cruise look like


Is an Arctic Cruise right for you?

If you’re a frequent traveller and you enjoy luxury then this Arctic Cruise is ideal for you. You will also love it if you’re a wildlife enthusiast or photographer and have always dreamt of seeing polar bears and beluga whales up close. If you have curious teenagers or older parents who love experiencing remote parts of the world, then this is for you too.

However if you haven’t ever been on a cruise before, then we would recommend you skip this and start with something cheaper, as that will give you an idea about whether or not you enjoy cruises. We suggest an Alaskan Cruise or a Mediterranean Cruise if it’s your first time on a cruise ship. If you need help choosing a cruise, check out our Guide to choosing the cruise that’s right for you

Packing for an Arctic Cruise

We have written several articles about packing for extreme cold (read it here) but a cruise holiday to the Arctic is different because you will need to dress up a fair bit. So here’s a checklist of everything we think you will need to pack for an Arctic Cruise for men and women

  • 2-3 evening gowns/tuxedos for black-tie dinners
  • Accessories for formal outfits such as pocket squares, ties, or necklaces
  • 3 smart casual outfits for daily dinners – Casual blazers, tailored shirts and trousers, and well-fitted dresses are ideal for this
  • 4 pairs of casual outfits for days on the cruise ship – jeans, linen trousers and shirts for men, casual dresses and loose trousers for women fit the bill perfectly
  • Light woollens such as jumpers, cardigans, and warm joggers (1 of each is enough)
  • Woollen accessories such as warm socks, beanies, and gloves
  • 1 warm outer layer such as a parka or down jacket
  • 2 pairs of formal shoes
  • 2 pairs of comfortable casual shoes including sneakers
  • 2 sets of work-out gear if you intend to use the gym
  • Swimsuit – luxury Arctic cruises have the most spectacular pools & you’ll definitely want to jump in for a dip
  • 1 pair of snow-boots – a lot of cruise ships provide snow boots on board to all guests, so check with the ship and do not invest in them if that is the case
  • 1 heavy-duty parka to protect you from the cold – a lot of cruise ships provide parkas to all guests on board to all guests, so check with the ship and do not invest in them if that is the case
  • Toiletries and makeup – don’t forget sunscreen
  • Travel-steam or travel-iron, really handy for black-tie dinners


Highlights of an Arctic Cruise

If you would like to see a little sample of all the highlights on an Arctic Cruise, check out our 1 minute video here:


Detailed Breakdown and what to expect from an Arctic Cruise

We booked this trip on Ponant’s L’Austral with Q Experiences and it was a seamless experience. We would recommend opting for a package that is all-inclusive i.e. includes accommodation, all meals, all excursions, and all transfers. Our package included all that but most importantly, it also included the cost of little extras such as all-day wifi, which ordinarily needs to be bought separately and welcome gifts.

Having said that, if you’re spending a lot of money on a single holiday experience, you would want to see a raw breakdown of what it exactly looks like, so you know what to expect. For that, you can see our detailed vlog of the cruise here – in this video we’ve answered all questions such as travelling with kids, finding vegetarian food, and even included a room tour.

We hope this answers ALL your questions about booking an Arctic Cruise of dreams. Let us know if you have any other questions and we will answer them in the comments.

8 thoughts on “Bucket List Experiences: How to plan a luxurious Arctic Cruise

  1. Savi and vid u both are truly amazing people…I love u both nd I truly admire your work ..the effort u put into it is really commendable…sending u lots of love..keep travelling guys

  2. Hi. I have booked a arctic cruise this july 2022 with g adventures. i was totally confused which indian travel insurance would cover medical evacuation, and emergency repatriation back to your home country? which insurance did you get for your arctic adventure?

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