What should I expect on an expedition?
You will be greeted with a warm welcome and made to feel comfortable and at home onboard Narwhal. Our expedition ethos revolves around wanting everyone to feel a part of the team. With such small groups on board, we limit our expeditions to 6 plus two crew, you will quickly get to know everyone. These small numbers mean that our expeditions can really be tailored to you. Maybe you want to visit some of the local wildlife hotspots, watching and recording beautiful seabirds and cetaceans. Maybe you want to access a remote fjord to launch your sea kayak, or maybe you want to pass a stunning mountain vista at just the right time to capture sunset with your camera. Unlike some tour operators we do not follow at pre-determined route or itinerary. Whilst we have to work safely around the weather conditions we will do our very best to bring your goals to life. Please do contact us if you have a specific goal in mind and we can work together to make it happen.
How much experience do I need to join an expedition?
You don't need to have any experience of sailing to join an expedition. Narwhal's crew can happily manage the running of the boat but will just as happily show you the ropes and get you actively involved in sailing. Since we keep group sizes on board small you will get ample time and supervision to become confident in new skills and perfect others. You will certainly have a lot of experience and sailing miles under your belt when you return from your expedition.
What should I bring?
This will depend on the expedition that you are going on. Check out our kit list for more details.
What type of food do you have onboard?
Breakfast, lunch and dinner along with plenty of yummy snacks will be provided while you are onboard. Even in remote locations we believe in providing tasty and wholesome food as well as plenty of cups of tea. We like to treat all of our trips as true expeditions and everyone onboard as part of the team. As such it is nice if everyone feels that they can muck in on the galley. However don't worry if you really don't like cooking, there are always other things that you can help with and Narwhal's crew will ensure that there are always hot meals on the table. We can cater for most dietary preferences provided that you tell us in advance, however due to the remote nature of some of our expeditions we may find it difficult to provide for halal or kosher requirements.
Where will I be sleeping?
You will have a comfy bunk of your own in one of Narwhal's three cabins. With a maximum of two people per cabin your will have the benefit of privacy and space for your own kit. Each cabin has storage space and hanging hooks for your clothing and equipment. There is a separate area for wet kit which enables your cabin to stay nice and dry. All of the bunks are provided with warm bedding, a comfortable pillow and 'lee boards' which mean that you can happily sleep while Narwhal sails along. All of the cabins are equipped with 12v chargers.
Will I take part in sailing the boat?
Yes, we would love all of our expedition team members to take part in the joy of sailing Narwhal. Narwhal's crew will explain how everything works and get you involved as much as you would like in sailing and navigating the boat. The jobs involved in sailing the boat are varied, from using the winches to trim the sails, keeping a watch of other boats, icebergs and whales as well as helming (steering the boat). There is no obligation to take part in any of the sailing activities if you don't want to but most people find that there are jobs on board that suit them.
How cold will it be?
This obviously depends on where your expedition is going. When you book we will send you an expedition information pack which includes details of the average temperatures for your expedition location. As well as lots of other info and travel advice. Whilst on an expedition you will be provided with a warm and waterproof expedition suit. Narwhal herself is insulated and has and on board heater ensuring she stays cosy below decks.
Will I be able to charge my phone?
Yes, there are 12v chargers in all of the cabins as well as at the navigation station. You will also be able to charge tablets and laptops and camera batteries can be charged via our inverter.
Will I be able to contact my friends and family?
Part of the fun of travelling in to the wilderness is being away from the constant buzz of modern communication. You may find that you get mobile phone reception near some of the bigger towns but it is likely that you will not have coverage for the more remote parts of the expedition or on ocean crossings. Narwhal is equipped with modern communications systems including a wifi and 4G booster, meaning that we can make the most of any signal that we get. We also have a satellite and VHF radio communications systems should you need to make an urgent call home.
Will I see whales?
Seeing whales is a an amazing highlight of any expedition. As with all of natures wonderful creatures, it is not possible to guarantee that we will see these secretive beasts. However Narwhal will be travelling through areas that are renowned for Orca, Minkie and sperm whale sightings. We will be keeping our eyes peeled and have binoculars and identification guides on board to help with our whale spotting and logging. As with all creatures, there is never a
What is included in an expedition?
- Accommodation on board Narwhal, including bedding and duvet.
- All meals and snacks on board.
- Use of an expedition sailing suit, and offshore standard lifejacket.
- Advice and instruction from Narwhal's qualified crew.
- Use of our rib to get ashore and explore or for photography.
What is not included in an expedition?
- Travel to and from the boat
- Meals taken ashore
Do I need special insurance to take part in an expedition?
Everyone coming onboard Narwhal needs to arrange adequate travel insurance. The extent of the coverage that you require will depend on your expedition. As a minimum your insurance should cover you for travel in the locations that you will be visiting, coverage for sailing, including offshore sailing if this is part of your expedition as well as coving you for any other activities that you will be undertaking such as kayaking or diving.
I am travelling on my own, is that ok?
Definitely, solo travellers are very welcome and can rest assured that we do not charge any additional single's charges.
What safety qualifications do you have?
This is a really important question that everyone should ask before joining any expedition. You can rest assured that Narwhal's crew are fully qualified to the Yachtmaster standards required by the Maritime and Coastguard Agency. In fact they both have a wealth of additional qualifications, you can check out their full bios in the Meet the Crew page.
Narwhal is built solidly of steel making her exceptionally robust and ideal for expeditioning in remote locations. She carries all of the safety equipment and communications systems required by the Maritime and Coastguard Agency for yachts voyaging offshore. Whilst we love adventuring, safety is always paramount in everything we do. Everyone joining the boat will be given a full safety briefing and no one will be asked to anything that they are not comfortable with. We want you to feel happy, confident and safe at all times onboard Narwhal.
How do I get to and from the boat?
It is up to you to make your travel arrangements to and from the boat. Arrival and departure points have been selected based on their transport links with most having an international airport close by and all having public transport links. Further travel information will be provided in the expedition information pack provided for all crew members on booking.
Do I need a visa?
You will need a valid passport, with at least 6 months remaining before expiry, and visas for each of the countries that you will be visiting on your expedition. You can check visa requirements with the relevant countries
Any other questions, or just want to discuss your requirements? Contact us and we will get back to you as soon as we can.