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Journeys of discovery for explorers and thinkers

Dr Owen Weller, University Lecturer, explains why he is passionate about the flora, fauna and peoples of the Arctic.

- 2 minute read

Nine-hundred miles. An unmatched geography and geology. And one of the University’s most brilliant geologists as one of your guides. Welcome to the Alumni Travel Programme’s inaugural expedition through the fabled Northwest Passage in Arctic Canada.

Sailing the Passage is a journey through an extraordinary place, rich in flora and fauna. The Passage boasts fascinating rock formations, and is inhabited by Inuit communities, whose cultures and traditions stretch back thousands of years.

The Passage’s nutrient-rich seas are a haven for narwhals, polar bears and beluga whales, while caribou, Arctic foxes and wolves still roam the land.

As well as stunning geology spanning nearly all of Earth history, there is a vibrant art and cultural scene – it makes for an unforgettable journey

The deck is an excellent place to observe the ever-changing scenery of islands, fjords and floating sea ice, with a team of highly experienced experts on hand to give lectures on botany, culture, history, geography and geology to bring the landscape to life.

“This is really the only way to see this part of the world – it’s very difficult to access otherwise,” explains Dr Owen Weller.

“I have spent three field seasons there on Baffin Island – the fifth largest island in the world that overlooks the eastern portion of the Passage – and I have become completely enchanted by the unique scenery, culture and wildlife of the Arctic.”

Excursions will also be made throughout the expedition to visit sites of interest, during which travellers will have the opportunity to meet the Inuit people who live and work in the Arctic, and learn about their rich history.

And, as Dr Weller points out, “as well as the stunning geology of the region, which spans nearly all of Earth history, there is a vibrant art and cultural scene, which collectively makes for an unforgettable journey”.

Find out more about the Alumni Travel Programme. For more information about this trip, please email us at: contact@alumni.cam.ac.uk

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