Take a Scandinavian journey featuring cosmopolitan cities and breathtaking countryside, as well as famed fjords and soaring snowcapped mountains.

Starting at: $6,684 * Includes airfare, taxes & all fees Make a Reservation Ask Us A Question or Call 855-330-1542
 Norway's dramatic Geirangerfjord  Traditional Viking boats in Norway  Charming port area of Copenhagen  Copenhagen's City Hall Square  Rosenborg Palace, Copenhagen  Room within Rosenborg Palace, Copenhagen  Kronborg Castle, the setting for Shakespeare's <i>Hamlet</i>  Christianborg Palace, Denmark  The World Heritage site of Geirangerfjord  Gierangerfjord, a World Heritage site. Credit: Per Eide/Innovation Norway  View from the Union Hotel, Geiranger. Credit: Terje Rakke Nordic Life / Visit Norway  The fjord near Bergen  Norway's beautiful Flam Valley  Typical village along the Sognefjord  The Gokstad Ship, Viking Museum, Oslo. Credit: Johan Berge/Visit Norway

Scandinavian Journey

Featuring Norway and Denmark

16 days from $6,684 | includes airfare, taxes and all fees

Take a Scandinavian journey featuring cosmopolitan cities and breathtaking countryside, as well as famed fjords and soaring snowcapped mountains.

or Call 855-330-1542

Tour Details

TOUR BROCHURE

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WHAT OUR TRAVELERS SAY

Smithsonian trips combine the elements of education, experience and just plain fun. If you enjoy art, history, culture and an occasional behind-the-scenes look at another country, these trips are for you. The fact that all expenses, transportation and baggage handling are included just adds to relaxed enjoyment. 

- Gail B.

Excellent value, strong intellectual contact which we never could have gotten on our own and choice urban and natural scenery. 

- John H.

This was the best guided tour I've ever taken! Everything was great! The itinerary, the group leader, the professor, the bus driver, tour participants, food, and hotels! I had a wonderful time. Scandinavia - especially Norway - was an eye-opener! I loved it. 

- Previous Journeys Traveler

JOURNEYS DISPATCHES

See All Journeys Dispatches ››

Accommodations

* Click on hotel name to visit hotel web-site.

Scandic Copenhagen

Copenhagen, Denmark

The Scandic Copenhagen sits in the center of Copenhagen, within easy walking distance of the Tivoli Gardens and just across the street from The Lakes, a chain of peaceful waterways popular with pedestrians and bicyclists. This contemporary hotel’s amenities include a restaurant and bar, fitness center, sauna, bicycles for rent, complimentary Wi-Fi Internet access, and laundry service. Air-conditioned guestrooms have private bath with hair dryer, in-room safe, ironing facilities, TV, and phone.

Number of nights: 3

Clarion Hotel, The Hub

Oslo, Norway

The Clarion Hotel, The Hub recently underwent a full renovation to provide guests an exceptional stay in the heart of downtown Oslo, only a short walk from shops and dining on Oslo’s main street; Karl Johans gate; the Royal Palace; museums; the waterfront Aker Brygge area; and many other attractions.  The redesigned common areas combine sleek contemporary styling with comfortable furnishings, and the hotel’s amenities include three restaurants and bars, fitness center, sauna, steam room, indoor swimming pool, complimentary Wi-Fi internet access, and laundry and dry cleaning services (for a fee).  Air-conditioned guestrooms have private bath with hairdryer, minibar, tea- and coffee-making facilities, TV, and phone. 

Number of nights: 3

Wadahl Hotel

Gaala, Norway

This century-old hotel enjoys a tranquil and serene mountain setting in the heart of Norway's ski country. The hotel prides itself on offering guests hospitality in a traditional Norwegian setting. Amenities include indoor and outdoor swimming pools, sauna, solarium, tennis, and miniature golf; restaurant, fireplace lounge, and bar. The hotel also offers laundry service and Internet access. The 100 guest rooms have private bath with hair dryer (upon request), mini-bar, TV, and phone.

Number of nights: 1

Hotel Union

Geiranger, Norway

Dating to 1891 and rebuilt in 1979, the fourth-generation family-run Hotel Union sits amidst the splendid scenery of Geirangerfjord, a UNESCO World Heritage site. Amenities and facilities of the 197-room hotel include indoor and outdoor swimming pools; a spa with Turkish bath, sauna, and solarium; several restaurants and bars; Internet access; and a collection of vintage cars (including a 1919 Cadillac) once used to drive visitors around the area. Comfortable guest rooms have private bath with hair dryer, mini-bar, TV, and phone.

Number of nights: 2

Radisson Blu Royal Hotel

Bergen, Norway

The recently renovated Radisson Blu Royal Hotel is superbly located in the city center of Bergen near the historic wharf area. Each of the 263 guest rooms is equipped with premier amenities including coffee/tea provisions, flat-screen TV, and free high-speed wireless Internet. The hotel offers a fitness center with sauna and solarium; a safe at reception; room service; laundry service; two restaurants and a bar; and a 24-hour business center.

Number of nights: 2

Hotel Ullensvang

Lofthus, Norway

Family run for five generations, this gracious 172-room hotel sits on the eastern shore of Sorfjorden, part of majestic Hardangerfjord. The hotel has two restaurants, a bar, and several lounges; indoor swimming pool, indoor tennis court, fitness room, golf simulator, Jacuzzi, saunas, and solarium. During the summer guests can lounge in the delightful fjord garden (where composer Edvard Grieg's cottage still stands), swim in the surprisingly comfortable waters of the fjord, or explore the fjord by row boat or paddle boat. Guest rooms have private bath with hair dryer, Internet access, mini-bar, TV, and phone.

Number of nights: 2

Activity Level

Activity Level 2: Moderate


Expectations: One of our Classic Land Journeys, this tour features visits to many cities, iconic sites, hidden gems, and various regions. Although comprehensive, it's not rushed, but well paced and finely tuned. Expectations include longer touring days with many full-day motor coach excursions and five different hotels. Mostly full-day excursions from four to six hours; five afternoons at leisure. Standing and walking for long periods of time during city tours, museum visits, and outdoor activities. Daily walks of up to three miles; walking over sometimes difficult terrain (e.g. cobblestones, city hills, stairs without handrails, absence of elevators); some longer walks to get to city centers where coaches are prohibited. The longest coach rides include two drives of approximately six hours and two drives of approximately five hours, but stops are made along the way. There will be one overnight ferry ride between Copenhagen to Oslo. When visiting the fjord region, there will be small ferry rides, drives with hairpin turns, and a one-hour train ride, which may incur steep steps to board train. Travelers will ascent to Mount Dalsnibba by coach (altitude of 4,900 feet).

Appropriate for: Travelers who are physically fit and comfortable with longer days of touring (both walking tours and coach time).

Tour Extension

Stockholm Post-Program Option — 4 Days, 3 Nights

Add an independent stay in the delightful Swedish capital to your Scandinavian sojourn. Your trip includes:

  • Air transportation Oslo/Stockholm inclusive of airline taxes and fees
  • 3 nights accommodations at Downtown Camber by Scandic (First Class)
  • 3 meals: 3 breakfasts
  • Transfer to airport

Downtown Camper by Scandic

Opened in 2017, the Downtown Camper Scandic sits in the very heart of downtown Stockholm, offering a perfect home from which to explore Sweden’s fascinating capital. The hotel’s “camp” theme is apparent in the dark wood accents; inviting, plant-filled common areas; and cozy guest rooms. The Scandic Camper features a restaurant and bar; penthouse wellness area with swimming pool, sauna, and juice bar; laundry service; and complimentary Wi-Fi Internet access. Air-conditioned guest rooms have private bath with hair dryer, in-room safe, mini-bar, TV, and phone.

Testimonials

WHAT OUR TRAVELERS SAY

Smithsonian trips combine the elements of education, experience and just plain fun. If you enjoy art, history, culture and an occasional behind-the-scenes look at another country, these trips are for you. The fact that all expenses, transportation and baggage handling are included just adds to relaxed enjoyment. 

- Gail B.

Excellent value, strong intellectual contact which we never could have gotten on our own and choice urban and natural scenery. 

- John H.

This was the best guided tour I've ever taken! Everything was great! The itinerary, the group leader, the professor, the bus driver, tour participants, food, and hotels! I had a wonderful time. Scandinavia - especially Norway - was an eye-opener! I loved it. 

- Previous Journeys Traveler
Reading List
A History of Scandinavia: Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Finland, and Iceland
By: T.K. Derry
A history of Scandinavia looks at the unique political, cultural, and economic development of the five countries as well as the factors which have unified the geographic region since Viking times
The Penguin Historical Atlas of the Vikings (Hist Atlas)
By: John Haywood
Viking marauders in their longships burst through the defences of ninth-century Europe, striking terror into the hearts of peasants and rulers alike for two centuries. But the Vikings were more than just marine warriors and this atlas shows their development as traders and craftsmen, explorers, settlers and mercenaries. With over sixty full colour maps, it follows the tracks of the Viking merchants who travelled deep into Russia, of Viking mercenaries who served in the emperor’s bodyguard at Constantinople, and Viking mariners who sailed beyond the edge of the known world to North America.
Insight Guides Scandinavia
By: Insight Guides
Insight Guides: Inspiring your next adventureDiscover Scandinavia, this wonderful region of fjords, tall mountains, rich folklore and cool design and be inspired by this new edition of Insight Guide Scandinavia, a comprehensive full-color guide to this breathtaking region whose New Scandinavian Cuisine has taken the world by storm.Inside Insight Guide Scandinavia:A fully-overhauled editionStunning new photography that brings this beautiful region and its people to life.Highlights of the country's top attractions, from the fjords of Norway to the cool cities of Stockholm and Copenhagen and the saunas of Finland in our Best of Scandinavia.Descriptive region-by-region accounts cover the whole country from the dense forests and “shifting” sand dunes of its national parks to the top sea and sun destinations in Western Pomerania.Detailed, high-quality maps throughout will help you get around and travel tips give you all the essential information for planning a memorable trip, including our independent selection of the best restaurants.About Insight Guides: Insight Guides has over 40 years’ experience of publishing high-quality, visual travel guides. We produce around 400 full-color print guide books and maps as well as picture-packed eBooks to meet different travelers’ needs. Insight Guides’ unique combination of beautiful travel photography and focus on history and culture together create a unique visual reference and planning tool to inspire your next adventure.‘Insight Guides has spawned many imitators but is still the best of its type.’ - Wanderlust Magazine
Michelin Scandinavia Finland Map 711 (Maps/Country (Michelin))
By: Michelin
Scandinavia Finland Map
Sweden - Culture Smart!: The Essential Guide to Customs & Culture
By: Charlotte J. DeWitt
Culture Smart! provides essential information on attitudes, beliefs and behavior in different countries, ensuring that you arrive at your destination aware of basic manners, common courtesies, and sensitive issues. These concise guides tell you what to expect, how to behave, and how to establish a rapport with your hosts. This inside knowledge will enable you to steer clear of embarrassing gaffes and mistakes, feel confident in unfamiliar situations, and develop trust, friendships, and successful business relationships. Culture Smart! offers illuminating insights into the culture and society of a particular country. It will help you to turn your visit-whether on business or for pleasure-into a memorable and enriching experience. Contents include * customs, values, and traditions * historical, religious, and political background * life at home * leisure, social, and cultural life * eating and drinking * do's, don'ts, and taboos * business practices * communication, spoken and unspoken
Denmark - Culture Smart!: The Essential Guide to Customs & Culture
By: Mark Salmon
Culture Smart! provides essential information on attitudes, beliefs and behavior in different countries, ensuring that you arrive at your destination aware of basic manners, common courtesies, and sensitive issues. These concise guides tell you what to expect, how to behave, and how to establish a rapport with your hosts. This inside knowledge will enable you to steer clear of embarrassing gaffes and mistakes, feel confident in unfamiliar situations, and develop trust, friendships, and successful business relationships. Culture Smart! offers illuminating insights into the culture and society of a particular country. It will help you to turn your visit-whether on business or for pleasure-into a memorable and enriching experience. Contents include * customs, values, and traditions * historical, religious, and political background * life at home * leisure, social, and cultural life * eating and drinking * do's, don'ts, and taboos * business practices * communication, spoken and unspoken
Norway - Culture Smart!: The Essential Guide to Customs & Culture
By: Linda March
Culture Smart! provides essential information on attitudes, beliefs and behavior in different countries, ensuring that you arrive at your destination aware of basic manners, common courtesies, and sensitive issues. These concise guides tell you what to expect, how to behave, and how to establish a rapport with your hosts. This inside knowledge will enable you to steer clear of embarrassing gaffes and mistakes, feel confident in unfamiliar situations, and develop trust, friendships, and successful business relationships. Culture Smart! offers illuminating insights into the culture and society of a particular country. It will help you to turn your visit-whether on business or for pleasure-into a memorable and enriching experience. Contents include * customs, values, and traditions * historical, religious, and political background * life at home * leisure, social, and cultural life * eating and drinking * do's, don'ts, and taboos * business practices * communication, spoken and unspoken
The Vikings: Lords of the Seas
By: Yves COHAT
Vikings: The North Atlantic Saga
By: Smithsonian Books DC
Replete with color photographs, drawings, and maps of Viking sites, artifacts, and landscapes, this book celebrates and explores the Viking saga from the combined perspectives of history, archaeology, oral tradition, literature, and natural science. The book's contributors chart the spread of marauders and traders in Europe as well as the expansion of farmers and explorers throughout the North Atlantic and into the New World. They show that Norse contacts with Native American groups were more extensive than has previously been believed, but that the outnumbered Europeans never established more than temporary settlements in North America.
Eat Smart in Norway: How to Decipher the Menu, Know the Market Foods & Embark on a Tasting Adventure (Culinary Travel Guide)
By: Joan Peterson
The latest offering in the innovative and award-winning Eat Smart series of culinary guidebooks, Eat Smart in Norway offers an upbeat and fascinating look at the culinary history, culture, regional dishes, and recipes of Norway for vacation goers, business travelers, and backpackers alike. Joan Peterson provides a treasury of culinary surprises and language tips for navigating menu and market, guiding the reader through unfamiliar Norwegian cuisine.            Eat Smart in Norway contains the following helpful features:·         a Menu Guide that demystifies food selection, allowing visitors to order food with confidence·         a Food and Flavors Guide that provides a comprehensive list of foods, spices, cooking utensils and styles, and more to make shopping in colorful outdoor markets easy and fun·         a range of delicious recipes that allows travelers to preview the tastes before departure, broadening the guides appeal to cookbook lovers as well·         a rich, historical perspective on the origins and varieties of food, and extensive background on the regional dishes.Finalist, Travel Guide category, ForeWord Reviews Book of the Year Awards
We Die Alone: A WWII Epic Of Escape And Endurance
By: David Howarth
We Die Alone recounts one of the most exciting escape stories to emerge from the challenges and miseries of World War II. In March 1943, a team of expatriate Norwegian commandos sailed from northern England for Nazi-occupied arctic Norway to organize and supply the Norwegian resistance. But they were betrayed and the Nazis ambushed them. Only one man survived--Jan Baalsrud. This is the incredible and gripping story of his escape.Frostbitten and snowblind, pursued by the Nazis, he dragged himself on until he reached a small arctic village. He was near death, delirious, and a virtual cripple. But the villagers, at mortal risk to themselves, were determined to save him, and--through impossible feats--they did.We Die Alone is an astonishing true story of heroism and endurance. Like Slavomir Rawicz's The Long Walk, it is also an unforgettable portrait of the determination of the human spirit.
Norwegian Folktales (The Pantheon Fairy Tale and Folklore Library)
By: Peter Christen Asbjornsen, Jorgen Moe
Long a treasure in Norway, the folktales collected by Peter Christen Asbjørnsen and Jørgen Moe have been acclaimed for their richness of humor, fullness of life, and depth of understanding since they first appeared in translation more than a hundred years ago. The Norwegian folktales, said Jacob Grimm, “surpass nearly all others.” Within these captivating tales we meet witches, trolls, and ogres; sly foxes and great, mysterious bears; beautiful princesses and country-lads-turned-heroes. Collected here in a sparkling contemporary translation by Pat Shaw Iversen and Carl Norman, these tales brim with the matchless vitality and power of their original telling. Included also are the wonderfully evocative original illustrations of Erik Werenskiold and Theodor Kittelsen.With black-and-white drawings throughoutPart of the Pantheon Fairy Tale and Folklore Library 
The Long Ships (New York Review Books Classics)
By: Frans G. Bengtsson
Frans Gunnar Bengtsson’s The Long Ships resurrects the fantastic world of the tenth century AD when the Vikings roamed and rampaged from the northern fastnesses of Scandinavia down to the Mediterranean. Bengtsson’s hero, Red Orm—canny, courageous, and above all lucky—is only a boy when he is abducted from his Danish home by the Vikings and made to take his place at the oars of their dragon-prowed ships. Orm is then captured by the Moors in Spain, where he is initiated into the pleasures of the senses and fights for the Caliph of Cordova. Escaping from captivity, Orm washes up in Ireland, where he marvels at those epicene creatures, the Christian monks, and from which he then moves on to play an ever more important part in the intrigues of the various Scandinavian kings and clans and dependencies. Eventually, Orm contributes to the Viking defeat of the army of the king of England and returns home an off-the-cuff Christian and a very rich man, though back on his native turf new trials and tribulations will test his cunning and determination. Packed with pitched battles and blood feuds and told throughout with wit and high spirits, Bengtsson’s book is a splendid adventure that features one of the most unexpectedly winning heroes in modern fiction.
The Saga of the Volsungs (Penguin Classics)
By: Jesse L. Byock, Anonymous
One of the great books of world literature--an unforgettable tale of jealousy, unrequited love, greed, and vengeance. Based on Viking Age poems and composed in thirteenth-century Iceland, The Saga of the Volsungs combines mythology, legend, and sheer human drama in telling of the heroic deeds of Sigurd the dragon slayer, who acquires runic knowledge from one of Odin's Valkyries. Yet the saga is set in a very human world, incorporating oral memories of the fourth and fifth centuries, when Attila the Hun and other warriors fought on the northern frontiers of the Roman empire. In his illuminating Introduction Jesse L. Byock links the historical Huns, Burgundians, and Goths with the extraordinary events of this Icelandic saga. With its ill-fated Rhinegold, the sword reforged, and the magic ring of power, the saga resembles the Nibelungenlied and has been a primary source for such fantasy writers as J. R. R. Tolkien and for Richard Wagner's Ring cycle.For more than seventy years, Penguin has been the leading publisher of classic literature in the English-speaking world. With more than 1,700 titles, Penguin Classics represents a global bookshelf of the best works throughout history and across genres and disciplines. Readers trust the series to provide authoritative texts enhanced by introductions and notes by distinguished scholars and contemporary authors, as well as up-to-date translations by award-winning translators.
Nordic Gods and Heroes
By: Padraic Colum
The age-old legends and tales of Nordic mythology are a common heritage of German, Scandinavian, and Anglo-Saxon peoples. This very readable collection features a rich selection of these time-honored stories, retold in simple dramatic fashion by noted Irish author Padraic Colum.Readers will find themselves drawn into the timeless world of the gods and goddesses who dwell in Asgard, a magical realm reached by a rainbow bridge. Here unfold the exciting stories of how Frey won Gerda, the Giant Maiden, and how he lost his magic sword; how Thor and Loki fooled Thrym the Giant; the Dwarf’s hoard and the curse that it brought; Baldur’s doom; Sigurd’s youth; Brynhild in the House of Flame; the death of Sigurd; the twilight of the gods; and many more.Enhanced with over 40 atmospheric illustrations by Willy Pogany, this charming volume will delight myth lovers with its rich selection of enduring legends.
City of My Dreams (Stockholm Series, Vol. 1)
By: Per Anders Fogelström
This is the first book in Fogelstrom's five-volume Stockholm Series, which broke the record for bestsellers in his native Sweden. After reading the series in Swedish, Jennifer Brown Baverstam, an accomplished translator of Swedish and French, and married to a Swede, vowed to make these books available in English to share with her American family and friends. Per Anders Fogelstrom was delighted with this effort and worked with Jennifer until his death in 1998.
Growth of the Soil (Penguin Classics)
By: Knut Hamsun
The epic novel of man and nature that won its author the Nobel Prize in Literature, in the first new English translation in more than ninety years When it was first published in 1917, Growth of the Soil was immediately recognized as a masterpiece. Ninety years later it remains a transporting literary experience. In the story of Isak, who leaves his village to clear a homestead and raise a family amid the untilled tracts of the Norwegian back country, Knut Hamsun evokes the elemental bond between humans and the land. Newly translated by the acclaimed Hamsun scholar Sverre Lyngstad, Hamsun's novel is a work of preternatural calm, stern beauty, and biblical power—and the crowning achievement of one of the greatest writers of the twentieth century.For more than seventy years, Penguin has been the leading publisher of classic literature in the English-speaking world. With more than 1,800 titles, Penguin Classics represents a global bookshelf of the best works throughout history and across genres and disciplines. Readers trust the series to provide authoritative texts enhanced by introductions and notes by distinguished scholars and contemporary authors, as well as up-to-date translations by award-winning translators.
Smilla's Sense of Snow by Peter Hoeg (27-Mar-2012) Paperback
By: Peter Hoeg
Birds of Europe: Second Edition (Princeton Field Guides)
By: Lars Svensson, Dan Zetterström, Killian Mullarney
Since it was first published a decade ago, Birds of Europe has become the definitive field guide to the diverse birdlife found in Europe. Now this superb guide has been brought fully up to date with revised text and maps along with added illustrations. Uniquely designed for easy use in the field, this expanded edition covers all 772 species found in the region as well as 32 introduced species or variants and 118 very rare visitors. Detailed species accounts describe key identification features, voice, habitat, range, and size. More than 3,500 full-color illustrations depict every species and all major plumage variations, and color distribution maps provide breeding, wintering, and migration ranges for every species.Complete with an introduction to each group of birds that addresses major problems of observation and identification, this new edition is the ultimate field guide to Europe's fascinating birdlife.Expanded and fully updated Covers all 772 species found in Europe, 32 introduced species or variants, and 118 very rare visitors Features more than 3,500 color illustrations that depict every species Includes detailed species accounts Provides color distribution maps for every species Color plates face text and maps for at-a-glance identification
Travel Insurance

For the convenience of our travelers, Smithsonian Journeys includes an on-tour Provided Insurance Plan through Travel Guard with the price of your tour. This travel insurance plan includes On-tour medical evacuation insurance (up to $100,000), emergency medical expense coverage (up to $25,000), dental expense coverage (up to $500), travel medical assistance and worldwide travel assistance (U.S. Residents only, not including U.S. Territories). Travel must be more than 100 miles from the Insured’s primary residence.

In addition, you may want to consider purchasing travel insurance to protect your investment from unforeseen events, such as missed flight connections, lost luggage, and cancelled plans. There are many plans you can consider. For your convenience, you may visit www.TravelGuard.com/SmithsonianJourneys or call Travel Guard at 1.800.208.6142 to learn more.

Terms and conditions

Mission

Smithsonian Journeys engage travelers in the mission of the Smithsonian – “the increase and diffusion of knowledge.” Like the Institution, our tours enrich our guests’ lives and satisfy their curiosity about the world. Your participation benefits the work of Smithsonian’s 19 museums, National Zoo, and nine research centers, helping to preserve our national treasures and shape the future through science, research, and exhibitions.

What Is Included in the Tour Cost

  • Expertise of a Smithsonian Journeys expert, tour director and local guides throughout the tour
  • All gratuities for the expert, tour director, on-tour guides and drivers
  • On-tour medical evacuation insurance (up to $100,000), emergency medical expense coverage (up to $25,000), dental expense coverage (up to $500), travel medical assistance and worldwide travel assistance (U.S. residents only)
  • Pre-tour information, including a reading list
  • Transfers and luggage handling abroad (for air inclusive guests)
  • All on-tour transportation including flights within the itinerary, unless otherwise noted
  • All accommodations for the duration of the tour
  • Meals, as noted in the itinerary (B-breakfast; L-lunch; D-dinner)
  • All sightseeing and visits as noted in each itinerary
  • Airfare to/from your departure city, airline taxes, surcharges, and fees, which are subject to change until final payment is made (for air inclusive guests only)

What Is Not Included in the Tour Cost

  • Passport and all visa fees and photos; immunization(s); and any other travel documentation fees as required
  • Optional travel insurance, including cancellation/delay/lost baggage insurance (learn more at TravelGuard.com/SmithsonianJourneys)
  • Personal items, unless otherwise stated, such as wine, liquors, a-la-carte orders
  • Expenses incurred by our tour operator in making any individual travel arrangements in conjunction with the tour
  • Airline baggage and other airline fees and associated taxes, unless noted in Tour description
  • Transfers and baggage handling abroad when purchasing “land only” package
  • Communication Charges (e.g.: phone, internet, etc.)
  • Other items noted as optional or not specifically mentioned as included
  • Airfare from your hometown to your departure city (for air inclusive guests only).

Registration

To submit a reservation request, please use our secure online system at SmithsonianJourneys.org or contact a Cultural Travel Specialist, at 1-855-330-1542 Mon-Fri 9 am - 7 pm; Sat 9 am – 4 pm (Eastern Time). Submitting an online request does not guarantee space on a tour.  You will be notified by a Reservation Specialist of your status once your request has been received and processed.  Please note: No new registrations can be accepted within 30 days of most tours. Some tours are more restrictive; please see individual tour pages for these exceptions.

To complete your reservation, the following information is required.
In accordance with the Transportation Security Administration’s (TSA) Secure Flight program, for all international tours, passport information is required, including the following:   Full name as it appears on your passport, Date of birth, and Gender (for further information, please visit www.tsa.gov).

For tours that include round-trip international airfare: If you provide incorrect information to the ticketing agent, or if you use a different passport than originally cited, you will be responsible for charges associated with the ticket’s reissue.

Payments

A deposit of $500 per person for a land tour reservation, unless otherwise noted, is required to reserve a space on a tour.  All payments may be made by credit card or check to the tour operator.  Deposits are applied to final payment of the tour price.

Final payment is due 95 days prior to departure, unless otherwise noted.  Balance is due upon invoicing.  If full payment is not received by the final payment due date, your place cannot be guaranteed on the tour.

Late Registration

Any registration received within 95 days (180 for Alaska) of departure is considered “on-request” and is subject to specific confirmation. Some tours are more restrictive. Payment in full must be made immediately by credit card, or by check sent by overnight mail to the tour operator, before confirmation is possible.

Once confirmed, cancellation penalties apply as set forth below. If confirmation is not possible, all payments made will be refunded in full. Late registration confirmation procedures apply to any participant who is transferred from the wait list to the tour within the designated late registration period for that tour.

For additional information, please contact a Cultural Travel Specialist, at 1-855-330-1542 Mon-Fri 9 am - 7 pm; Sat 9 am – 4 pm (Eastern Time), or SJReservations@si.edu and SmithsonianJourneys.org.

A Note about Costs

All prices are based on two persons sharing a room/cabin. All prices are quoted in U.S. dollars. Tour costs are based upon current airfares, tariffs, currency values, and on the basis of a presumptive minimum number of participants. While we will do everything possible to maintain the listed prices, they are subject to change.   Due to fluctuations in oil prices, a fuel surcharge may be added to your tour fee (e.g. internal flights, cruises, etc.).  Details and costs will be advised prior to departure.

Wait List

If the tour of your choice is fully subscribed, you may choose to be placed on a waitlist by contacting a Reservation Specialist at 1-855-330-1542 Mon-Fri 9 am - 7 pm; Sat 9 am – 4 pm (Eastern Time), or SJReservations@si.edu. Individuals on the wait list will be contacted if space becomes available and can inquire about tour status by contacting a Reservation Specialist. If you choose to withdraw from a wait list, please notify us.  

Cancellation and Refund Policy

Following enrollment, a participant’s withdrawal from the tour for any reason, including, but not limited to, illness, injury, family engagements, work-related issues, or geopolitical concerns, etc., will be deemed a cancellation. Please understand that there will be no exceptions to our cancellation policy.

Per person cancellation fees are based on date of written notice to Smithsonian Journeys. Tour operator will refund on the following basis:

  • Cancellations within 7 days of booking:  Full Refund (unless it is within final payment date, 95 days before departure)
  • Cancellations after 7 days of booking:  Full Deposit Retained
  • Cancellations made within final payment date, 95 days before departure:  No Refund
  • Cancellation by Smithsonian Journeys:  Full Refund or Credit

Please understand that there will be no exceptions to our cancellation policy.

Smithsonian Journeys recommends that all participants purchase travel insurance.

If your flights are delayed or if for any reason you are prevented from joining the tour on the scheduled departure date and time, or if you choose to leave the tour early, we cannot provide a full or partial refund or credit toward a future tour.

Smithsonian Journeys reserves the right to cancel any tour due to low enrollment and when a U.S. Department of State Travel Warning is issued for the destination.

Air Service

For tours that include round-trip international airfare, rates are based on economy class from designated departure cities as shown.  Airfares from other cities are available upon request.  Airline upgrades at additional cost may be available on request for the international portion of your flight.  If an air schedule requires an overnight stay in a gateway city, the cost of the overnight will be at your expense.  For tours that include round-trip international airfare, the tour operator  will be happy to help with arrangements. Please note that seat assignments for your international flights is usually done at airport check-in. The tour operator is unable to guarantee any seat assignments.

When planning our tours that include international round-trip airfare, the tour operator contracts with those airlines that they feel provide the level of service, routings, and value necessary for your entire trip. While another airline may offer a more direct connection, it may be at a price unavailable at the lower group rates that enable us to offer you the best possible travel value. Please note that frequent flyer mileage credits are issued at the discretion of the airline(s) and may not be available for the flights on your tour. If you prefer to make your own airline reservations, “land only” pricing is available on most of our tours.

Air Service/Tickets Purchased Independently of the Tour

International and domestic air schedules are subject to change at any time. Tours can also be canceled due to low enrollments. If you make your own airline reservations, we recommend that you do not purchase nonrefundable tickets or tickets with high penalties for changes. 

We urge you to check airline cancellation penalties before purchasing airline tickets since international departure times and flights can change. Neither the Smithsonian Institution nor the tour operator accepts liability for cancellation penalties related to domestic or international airline tickets purchased independently in conjunction with a tour.

Travel Insurance- Cancellation/Delay/Lost Baggage

Smithsonian Journeys recommends that all participants purchase travel insurance.  Learn more at TravelGuard.com/SmithsonianJourneys.

Travel Documents and Information

Participants are responsible for obtaining any documents required for their participation in the tour such as a valid passport, all visas, vaccination certificates, and any other documents. If your tour requires a visa or other entry documents, we will send you the appropriate information after you make a reservation.  Failure to obtain documents does not negate the terms and conditions, and any extra costs incurred for rerouting or delay due to travel without the necessary documents will be the participant’s responsibility. If you are not a U.S. citizen, please contact your embassy or consulate to ensure you obtain the proper documentation.

For all international departures, a passport valid for at least six months after the completion of your tour, and with at least six blank visa pages, is required for U.S. citizens on all tours. The U.S. Department of State will no longer add visa pages into U.S. passports beginning January 1, 2016. The decision to discontinue this service was made to enhance the security of the passport and to abide by international passport standards. Beginning January 1, 2016, applicants in need of additional pages in their valid passports must obtain a new passport. For more information on how or where to apply, please visit Travel.State.Gov/ApplyEarly or call the National Passport Information Center toll-free at 1-877-487-2778/1-888-874-7793 (TTY/TTD).

For more information about traveling to destinations abroad, we recommend the “Learn about your destination” section on the U.S. Department of State travel website www.travel.state.gov.  For medical information, we recommend contacting the Centers for Disease Control at (877) FYI-TRIP or www.cdc.gov/travel

Physical and Medical Considerations

To enjoy the travel experience, participants should be in good physical and mental health. All tours require an element of walking (up to two miles per day over uneven terrain) and of climbing stairs, often without handrails. Participants should have sufficient stamina to keep pace with an active group of participants on long days of touring. If you have any questions about your ability to participate in a tour, please call us at 855-330-1542. Any physical condition, diet, or special request for accommodation must be identified in writing on the Personal Information Form when the reservation is made. Some tours have additional information regarding physical and medical considerations, which may be discussed with the Reservation Specialist at 855-330-1542.

Please be aware that health care standards, facilities, and services abroad may be different or even inadequate for treating certain health conditions.  It is essential that you inform us in writing (on the provided Personal Information Form) of any existing condition for which you may require medical attention or accommodation during the tour. We will make reasonable efforts to accommodate the needs of our participants; however, services of a personal nature cannot be expected or guaranteed. By forwarding the deposit for pre-registration or registration in full, you affirm that you do not have any physical or other limitations that would create a hazard for yourself or other participants or would require adjustments to the tour for other participants.

Itinerary or Tour Modifications

Smithsonian Journeys strives to improve tour itineraries and their features. If improvements can be made, or unforeseen circumstances beyond our control make changes necessary, at our sole discretion, we reserve the right to vary itineraries and to substitute elements of the tour.  These elements include, but are not limited to:  hotels, staff, speakers, experts, and services for any stated in the itinerary.

Every effort will be made to carry out the tour as planned but alterations may still occur after the final itinerary has been sent to you. Please note that weather and other conditions may force changes to the advertised sailing schedule on cruise tours. The ship’s captain has the authority to change the ship’s schedule.

Hotel Accommodations

Smithsonian Journeys chooses hotels based on a combination of location, service, atmosphere, and price. On adventure tours and tours in out-of-the-way places, best-available hotels are used.  Tour prices are based on two persons sharing a room with a bath.

Singles and Roommates

Hotel rooms are always reserved for single participants, however, the number of single rooms available on a tour may be limited. Therefore we recommend that you register early. Please note that a single supplement will most likely apply for a single room.  If you are traveling alone and wish to share a room/cabin, we will do our best to find someone of the same gender and smoking preference to share with you. If you are matched with a non-smoking roommate, it is mutually agreed that you cannot smoke in your hotel room/cabin. When a roommate cannot be found, a single supplement will be charged. Please note that the single rooms in many foreign hotels may be smaller than those to which you are accustomed.

Children

All tours except family journeys, are designed for adults. Some may be suitable for children 16 and older. Regardless of age, children must pay full price unless otherwise noted, moreover, a parent or guardian must accompany those under 18.

Special Travel Arrangements

Participants may wish to extend their stay in the group hotel after the tour. Our tour operators will work with you on these arrangements, dependent upon space availability.  . For participants using air, only post tour extensions are offered. Tour operator may be able to assist land only participants with pre-tour arrangements.

Should you decide not to participate in certain parts of the tour or use certain goods included in the tour, no refunds will be made for those unused parts of the tour or goods.

Dispute Resolution

If a complaint arises, the participant should first inform a member of the on-tour staff, so that the staff can attempt to rectify the matter. If the issue remains unresolved, the individual should submit the complaint in writing to Smithsonian Journeys within 30 days of the completion of the tour.

The Smithsonian Journeys staff will make a good faith effort to resolve any dispute.  In the event that the parties are unable to resolve the dispute, the parties may agree to use a method of non-binding Alternative Dispute Resolution to resolve the dispute.  In the event that the parties are unable to agree on the method of Alternative Dispute Resolution to use, or in the event that either party is dissatisfied with the outcome of that alternative dispute resolution method, such efforts shall not constitute a waiver by either party of the right to file suit.

Photography and Video

Participants on tour may be photographed or recorded (audio and video) for the educational and promotional purposes of the Smithsonian Institution and Smithsonian authorized third parties.  This content may be used in marketing publications and posted on websites to promote Smithsonian Journeys without compensation to the participant. Participants who prefer that their name, voice and/or image not be used must notify us in writing prior to the beginning of the tour.

Smoking Policy

 For the comfort of all participants, we ask that there be no smoking during all group activities, including excursions and meals. On certain cruises, there is no smoking aboard the ship. Your pre-tour bulletins will provide further information.

READ CAREFULLY: RESPONSIBILITY STATEMENT AND LIABILITY DISCLAIMER

Smithsonian Journeys tours are organized and administered by professional tour operators hired as independent contractors. The use of designated tour operators allows the Smithsonian to offer participants a wide array of educational travel opportunities. The tour operator acts only as an agent for the respective suppliers by making arrangements for transportation, accommodations, and other services. Neither the Smithsonian Institution nor the tour operator shall be held liable for personal injury, death, property damage or accident, delay or irregularity arising out of any act or omission of these suppliers. The Smithsonian Institution and the tour operator reserve the right, without penalty, to make changes in the published itinerary whenever, in their judgment, conditions warrant, or if they deem it necessary for the comfort, convenience, or safety of tour participants.

The Smithsonian Institution and its designated tour operator also reserve the right, without penalty, to withdraw the tour announced, to decline to accept any person as a participant in a tour, or to require any participant to withdraw from the tour at any time (including, but not limited for inappropriate, or offensive behavior) when such action is determined by tour staff to be in the best interests of the health, safety or general welfare of the tour group or the individual participant.

Dates, schedules, tour details, and costs, although provided in good faith based on information available at the time of publication on the website, in the brochure or catalog, are subject to change and revision.

AS A CONDITION OF ACCEPTANCE OF ANY APPLICATION, EACH APPLICANT MUST AGREE TO THE STATEMENT SET FORTH BELOW:

The undersigned has read carefully the Responsibility Statement and Liability Disclaimer set forth above, the schedule of activities for this tour, as well as the terms and conditions of application and participation as set forth in the tour materials, and recognizes and accepts any risk associated with the tour and the conditions, including the refund policy, set forth in the tour materials. The undersigned further acknowledges that there are many risks and uncertainties inherent in any travel tour, including but not limited to the hazards of various modes of transportation, forces of nature, acts or omissions of foreign governments, terrorism, war or insurrection, theft, illness, and damage to person or property due to the negligent acts or omissions of tour staff or others. In consideration of, and as part payment for, the right to participate in the tour, the undersigned, on behalf of himself, his dependents, heirs, executors, administrators and assigns, agrees to release the Smithsonian Institution, its Regents, officers, employees, representatives or agents, the United States, and the tour operator and its officers, employees and agents, from liability for personal injury, death, property damage or loss suffered by any person in connection with this tour, even if caused by the negligence (but not the reckless, willful, or fraudulent conduct) of tour staff or other related persons or entities. In addition, by registering for this tour, the applicant certifies that he or she is mentally and physically capable of full participation in this tour. By registering for a Smithsonian Journey, the participant agrees to the Responsibility Statement and Liability Disclaimer and the Terms and Conditions herein.