How to sail to the Arctic Circle in summer 2024  

Nov 13, 2023

SKIRR Adventures will once again be offering those in search of a proper adventure the chance to sail on a 4,470 nautical mile long high latitude expedition next summer, departing 27 June 2024, with spots on this unique adventure holiday available to book now.   

Created by Clipper Ventures, the organisation running the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race, SKIRR Adventures brings together people from around the globe to explore the planet’s hidden corners under sail on board two Clipper 68 ocean yachts, adapted for the conditions and temperatures faced in the Arctic. The experiential voyage, by sea and land meets the growing demand for slow travel, low-impact adventures and seeking freedom.  

Covering five legs, the trip will enable adventurers taking part to witness the wildlife, remoteness and discover the exhilarating seascapes of icebergs that only the most remote areas in the world can offer. Participants can sign up for one or multiple legs, or the entire expedition starting and ending at Clipper Ventures HQ in Gosport.

SKIRR Adventures – Iceland to Greenland. Photo: Brian Carlin/16 Degrees South

Leg 1, Western Coves and Scottish Isles, 27 June- 1 July: Gosport – South West England – Port Ellen – Tobermory – Oban 

Leg 2, Discover Iceland, 12 July- 26 July: Oban – Vestmannaeyjar – Reykjavik 

Leg 3, Greenland Explorer, 28 July- 11 August: Reykjavik – Tasilaq – Ísafjörður 

Leg 4, Arctic Adventure, 13 August- 27 August: Ísafjörður – Scoresby Sund – Reykjavik 

Leg 5, Iceland, Isles and Islands, 29 August-19 September: Reykjavik – Faroe Islands – Shetlands – Orkneys – Gosport 

The journey to the high latitudes and the Arctic is committing and not for the faint-hearted.  With the expedition taking place between 27 June and 19 September, in the height of the northern hemisphere summer, participants can expect long daylight hours and beautiful skyscapes as they travel north under the power of wind and sail, however faced with the unpredictability and thrill of arctic weather patterns. The yachts make it possible to reach remote anchorages and locations, with a low environmental impact.  

The trip also offers flexibility, and is customisable, with an unfixed itinerary between ports, which is influenced by the conditions and crew on board, making for a personalised experience. With as much of an emphasis on discovering each destination as well as sailing, each of the legs will offer the chance to explore the shore whilst the yachts are moored. From hiking in Greenland to whisky tasting in the Scottish Isles, SKIRR Adventures is more than just a sailing trip, it’s designed to challenge and empower those that take it on. 

SKIRR Adventures – Iceland to Greenland. Photo: © Brian Carlin/16 Degrees South

Expedition participant Toni Wilson reflects on the experience she had sailing on the SKIRR Adventures expedition: “There were so many magical moments but one that sticks with me is the pink dawn. The pink sky was reflected in very calm waters and the dawn followed shortly after the dusk which was totally different again. This isn’t a race, it’s more relaxed, you’re not being rushed for sail changes so it can be a very relaxed environment. The Skipper and First Mate made the trip the perfect adventure – the environment on the boat is warm and fun and it couldn’t have been better.”  

Laura Ayres, Managing Director of Clipper Ventures said: “This will be the third SKIRR Adventures expedition to the high latitudes. With the opportunity to sail to remote locations, witnessing the true forces of nature in the form of Arctic weather conditions and icebergs, this is truly an adventure of a lifetime. Crew on previous expeditions have experienced sailing alongside whales and dolphins, anchoring in pristine and deserted bays, navigating fjords, and developing their sailing skills alongside like-minded individuals from around the world.  

“On the upcoming trip, sailors will get to tick off bucket-list sailing destinations such as Cornwall, Scoresby Sund, Reykjavik and the Shetland and Orkney Islands, and get to experience the simplicity and adventure of exploring under sail. With places limited to only 12 per yacht, per leg, we recommend booking early to not miss out.” 

Open to everyone age 18+ who has the relevant sailing experience (RYA Day Skipper qualification or equivalent sailing experience) participants can sign up to one leg, multiple legs, or the full expedition: a 4,470-mile trip lasting just under three months. Sailing experience is required due to the nature of the trip, which will involve some night sailing, and sailing in a watch (shift) pattern. However, participants with minimal or no sailing experience can still take part after completing a bespoke Clipper Ventures six-day training course, designed to enable new sailors to become competent and confident crew members, provided at an additional cost to the expedition. 

Each yacht will be led by a Professional Skipper, First and Second Mate and the yachts, that have previously circumnavigated the globe on several Clipper Race editions, have been adapted for the demands of the environment. Included in the price is: food on board, wet weather gear, safety equipment and insurance. 

Booking is now open. Head to to secure a spot on a unique adventure.