Wherever we go – from the Drake Passage to King George Island in the Antarctic, all the way to East Greenland and even the North Pole – Quark passengers love bringing a bit of their home country with them. Even better, they share their experiences with us in photos, videos and even guest blog posts.
In light of the recent Olympics, one of the greatest displays of national pride on earth, we wanted to share these incredible photos of our passengers celebrating their home countries on expedition to the North Pole. See if your own country has been represented on an Arctic tour!
A Meeting of Nations at the North Pole
International flags flew high overhead on this expedition to the North Pole. Everyone is bundled up in their Quark parkas, but you might be surprised to learn how temperate it can be in the Arctic during the summer, which is when we travel. Passengers come from the world over and enjoy partaking in one another's culture as much as displaying their own national pride. In this blog post, Chris McFarlane shares his wow moment from his first trip to the North Pole: "The traditional Russian parade music that blasted as our ship cast her lines and left port was definitely memorable!"
Here's another view of Canadian, UK, Japanese and a plethora of other flags flying high off 50 Years of Victory, the world's most powerful and largest icebreaker.
North Pole: A Symbol of International Unity
Here, you can see passengers taking part in a Pole Parade, beneath the banners of their respective countries. The North Pole is a symbol of international unity, as was showcased last summer when 50 Years of Victory took part in the Olympic Torch Relay and brought the Olympic Flame to the North Pole.
Once the ship reached 90 degrees North, passengers took part in the torch relay both onboard and on the Arctic Ice. Torch bearers from the eight countries making up the Arctic council took part, ensuring Russia, Norway, Finland, Sweden, Canada, the US, Iceland and Denmark were all represented.
Flagbearers in the Far North
Here, another passenger proudly displays the flag of China, as he represents his nation at the top of the world, where a step in any direction takes you south.
Not to be outdone, Canada and the US represent!
It's a rite of passage, once you've crushed through the thick sea ice and had a chance to view the spectacular Arctic Ocean by helicopter, to have your picture taken at the North Pole.
As the Olympics came to a close, we were reminded that citizens of every nation love to take a piece of home with them when they travel. Arctic voyage passengers are no different; as some of the very few on earth who have the opportunity to travel to Franz Joseph Land and stand at the actual North Pole, they are stewards for their countries and proud to show it off!
Do you have polar adventure pictures that show off your national pride? Share them with us on Twitter!