Working Ship Sailings on MS Vesterålen

Bergen - Kirkenes - Bergen

Experience a smaller and more intimate ship where you can go behind the scenes to learn more about the Hurtigruten operation, history and the crew. Named after some of the most beautiful scenery in Norway, a voyage on MS Vesterålen is truly something special.

  • Experience local life on board MS Vesterålen
  • Learn about maritime operations, logistics and hotel operations.
  • Discover Norway's entire coastal route with 34 ports, more than 100 fjords and 1000 mountains
  • Stay active and adventurous by joining our exciting sea and land based excursions


Join MS Vesterålen for an in-depth knowledge of the different departments and the interaction between them. As a guest, you will also be involved in the different operations, focusing on ‘edutainment’ and other engaging activities.


On MS Vesterålen, there will be different ‘Working Ship’ topics presented every other day. On those evenings there will be a talk hosted by the tour leader and interviews with various crew members. You will also see a short film or hear a presentation in the engine room, bridge, galley, cargo deck, etc., related to the topic of the evening. You will also get to meet the captain, machinist, hotel manager, chef and seamen. You can also take part in practical courses such as navigation (by map and compass) and nautical knots. We will provide both digital and printed information about Hurtigruten’s history; ship, route and operational development, and other navigational facts. When we sail past operational and historical points of interest, you will receive information about them out on deck along with other fun facts. At the end of your voyage, you have the opportunity to purchase your own exclusive logbook, a great souvenir from this wonderful educational journey. The experience you get on board the MS Vesterålen is offered in addition to those offered on the Classic Voyages, and will not interfere with the excursions program.

Your voyage prices includes 

  • Voyage in cabin category of your choice, on a full-board basis
  • English-speaking Tour Leader on board

Not included 

  • Flights & transfers
  • Travel insurance
  • Optional excursions 
  • Luggage handling

Please note

  • Prices are in USD per person based on two people travelling together sharing a twin cabin
  • Not all categories are available for all departures
  • Single cabin pricing available on request
  • Hurtigruten has a flexible pricing system and all prices are capacity controlled and subject to availability.

Additional Departures for this Voyage:


Voyage Itinerary

The below itinerary is the 12-day Classic Round Voyage which will vary slightly on MS Vesterålen to incorporate the working ship activities. Please refer to the relevant voyage pages for itineraries on the 7-day Classic Voyage North, 6-day Classic Voyage South or 11-day Voyage of Discovery.

Departure Varies by Season

Varies by Season, Year-Round

Departure port Bergen, Norway
Day 1

The Journey Begins

Location : Bergen, Norway

Hurtigruten’s Classic Roundtrip Voyage lasts 12 days and starts in our southernmost port, Bergen. Before your departure, why not take some extra time to explore one of Norway’s most beautiful and distinctive cities? Bergen has always considered itself to be a distinct region within the Kingdom of Norway.

There was a time when traveling from Bergen across the sea to the UK or the Netherlands was far easier than trekking across the mountains to Oslo. You do not travel via Bergen – you travel either to or from Bergen.

Bergen is the start and end point for the traditional shipping lanes across the North Sea, both for Hurtigruten and other cruise ships, ferries and cargo ships. Even the railway from continental Europe ends here in the city of the seven mountains.

Day 2

A Day for Masterpieces

Location : Florø - Molde

If you wake up early you’ll have the opportunity to see Hornelen before enjoying a delicious breakfast. Rising 2,820 ft. high to the west, this is the mountain that according to the ancient Norse saga was climbed by Viking King Olav Tryggvason.

On this day you will experience a rare venture into open ocean as we sail past the West Cape, where the Norwegian Sea opens up to the North Atlantic Ocean. We then set course toward what is often considered to be Norway’s jewel in the crown, Geirangerfjord. This is the day for spectacular fjord experiences. In the summer months, we sail into Geirangerfjord, which is surrounded by majestic mountain peaks, steep cliffs and cascading waterfalls. In the fall, we explore the idyllic Hjørundfjord, where only Hurtigruten ships sail.

Day 3

In the Footsteps of the Vikings

Location : Kristiansund - Trondheim - Rørvik

Trondheim, Norway’s third largest city, was founded by the Viking King Olav Tryggvason back in 997 A.D. Trondheim’s architecture and surroundings create a beautiful, almost mystical atmosphere for any outing.

Whether you prefer a guided tour of the Nidaros Cathedral, kayaking on the river Nid and into the city’s smaller channels, or a casual walk or bicycle ride among the beautifully restored wooden buildings in the Bakklandet district.

Day 4

Welcome to the Arctic!

Location : Brønnøysund - Svolvær

On this day we cross the Arctic Circle. This invisible border at 66° 33’ North marks the southernmost point for the midnight sun, which shines 24 hours a day in the summer. North of this line, you will see the midnight sun in summer and the magical northern lights in winter. This is where the Arctic begins.

Norway’s second largest glacier, Svartisen, is located near Ørnes, the old trading village and port of call. The journey continues along the beautiful Helgeland coast, considered by many to be just as spectacular as Lofoten. In the afternoon, we sail from Bodø across Vestfjord. Then the 3,280-ft high mountain of Lofotveggen will appear on the horizon, marking our arrival to Lofoten.

Day 5

Into the Wild

Location : Stokmarknes - Skjervøy

Today, the Hurtigruten ship approaches Tromsø, the capital of the Arctic. Get ready for a fun-filled day packed with exciting activities, no matter what time of year you travel.

Join in whale watching, dog sledding, hiking and learn about the country’s fascinating polar history. Or join us for a kayaking excursion, where you can admire this beautiful Arctic city from a different perspective?

Day 6

The Northern Lights and the North Cape

Location : Øksfjord - Berlevåg

Enjoy the magnificent landscape as we continue our journey toward the North Cape. In Honningsvåg, you can join us for a cultural walk through the town and be charmed by the colorful buildings. We will then sail through the heart of the Sámi homeland to the port of Kjøllefjord, an area famous for its rich birdlife.

Enjoy the sub-Arctic landscape as we cross the 71st parallel north, and be sure to take this opportunity to experience the North Cape - the northernmost point on the continent.

Day 7

To the Top and Back Again

Location : Båtsfjord - Kirkenes - Berlevåg

Kirkenes is known as the capital of the Barents Region and is the gateway to the east. The town is also Hurtigruten’s easternmost port and turning point. You will notice that the landscape and sea along the coast of Finnmark becomes ever more dramatic the closer we get to Kirkenes, which is located just a few miles from the Russian border.

If you are here in winter, we recommend a visit to the Kirkenes Snowhotel. The snow hotel first opened in 2006 and is built from over 15 metric tons of snow and ice. Snow is actually a very good insulator, so even if it is -20 degrees Fahrenheit outside, the interior at the snow hotel remains at a stable 25 degrees.

Day 8

The Extreme North

Location : Mehamn - Tromsø

We now bid Finnmark farewell, and along the journey you will see some of the world’s northernmost fishing villages. Sailing past Fruholmen, you will see Europe’s northernmost lighthouse; on Hjelmsøy, you will have a great view of Europe’s largest colony of guillemots and razorbills.

In Hammerfest, you can join in a mountain trek or a guided tour of the town. In short: You are far north, in an inhabited but also quite unspoiled part of Europe. Consider a hike up the Lyngen Alps, a popular destination for mountaineers from all over the world.

Day 9

Welcome to Lofoten

Location : Tromsø - Stamsund

The journey past the beautiful Vesterålen Islands toward the spectacular Lofoten Islands is for many the highlight of the trip. Between Sortland and Stokmarknes, you can see the famous Møysalen mountain, which has inspired numerous artists over the years.

As we sail south through Vesterålen, we seemingly head straight toward a mountain wall, but there is an opening there: Raftsundet, which leads to the bewitchingly narrow Trollfjord. We end the day with activities in Lofoten’s principal city of Svolvær: Choose from a sea eagle safari, a fishing excursion, a RIB boat ride, horseback riding and more.

Day 10

A Date with the Seven Sisters

Location : Bodø - Rørvik

Even as you reluctantly tear yourself away from Lofoten, the rest of the journey will help to soothe your loss with more magnificent sights. In the morning, we cross the Arctic Circle. Now we head for the Helgeland coast with its abundance of islands, islets, reefs and steep mountain walls.

This is the home of the unique rock formations of Hestmannen; Torghatten, with its distinctive hole; and the spectacular Seven Sisters mountain range. All seven mountains are more than 2,950 ft. high, and according to local legend, the seven sisters were turned to stone because they forgot to hide from the sun.

Day 11

The Old Cities and the Sea

Location : Trondheim - Ålesund

After visiting Trondheim in the morning, the ship heads slowly out of the majestic Trondheimsfjord past Munkholmen, Hitra and thousands of islands and islets before docking in Kristiansund.

Often referred to as Norway’s ‘cured cod capital’, Kristiansund boasts a longtime history of exporting the salted, dried fish. From Kristiansund, we cross the open sea on our way toward Molde.

Day 12

The Final Chapter of the 'Ferry' Tale

Location : Bergen, Norway

During the night the ship will call at Ålesund, Torvik and Måløy, and on this day, the world’s most beautiful voyage draws to a close. But before we dock in Bergen, there are still a few nautical miles of fascinating scenery ahead, such as the picturesque Nordfjord below the enormous glacier of Jostedalsbreen.

Nordfjord stretches 56 miles inland, all the way to the tiny villages of Loen and Olden. The rugged landscape at the mouth of the fjord is in stark contrast to the fertile landscape found inland. The lush orchards and glacier arms reach out toward sparkling lakes and cascading waterfalls. Be sure to make the most of the last hours on board and enjoy these beautiful sights.

Arrival Varies by Season

Varies by Season

Location Bergen, Norway
Your Ship

Our ship sailing this route

Prepare to be charmed by the intimate MS Vesterålen, characterised by her bright, cheerful public areas. Enjoy the views from the panorama lounge and notice the extensive art collection on board.


Northbound Excursions

These are the available excursions for this Voyage. We recommend that you add them to your voyage during the online booking process, but you can also book the excursions on board the ship if the excursion still has capacity.

Southbound Excursions

These are the available excursions for the Classic Southbound Voyage. We recommend that you add them to your voyage during the online booking process, but you can also book the excursions on board the ship if the excursion still has capacity.


Discover the natural wonders, ports, and wildlife you may come across during your Cultural Voyage in Norway.


Learn about the experience of sailing in beautiful Norway, get tips from insiders, read about Norwegian culture and etiquette, and find out what to pack for your journey.


Discover the natural wonders, ports and wildlife you may come across during your voyage to Norway.


Immerse yourself in the adventures you can experience on a Cultural Voyage.

Extend Your Voyage

Flight Packages

Please contact us if you want to add on a flight between the US and Bergen. All flight packages include transfers. We also have arrival and departure packages that include transfers and overnight hotel stays in Bergen and a departure package that includes transfers, an overnight hotel stay in Bergen, rail from Bergen to Oslo, and an overnight stay at a hotel in Oslo.

Pre and Post Programs

Enhance your vacation in Norway with an extension program in Bergen before or after your voyage.