- Starts at: Oslo, Norway
- Ends at: Oslo, Norway
- Duration: 13 Days / 12 Nights
Spitsbergen is the largest island of the Svalbard archipelago, and on this voyage we’ll attempt a circumnavigation of the island. Lying entirely within the Arctic Circle, Spitsbergen is rugged, wild, unspoiled—utterly unforgettable. When it comes to viewing arctic wildlife, Spitsbergen is known as one of the most prolific destinations.
The island and surrounding area offers one of the best opportunities to view polar bears, and with luck you’ll be able to see the world’s largest carnivores in their natural habitat. Walrus populations love Spitsbergen as well, feeding in the food-rich icy waters around the island. Whales and seabirds will also entertain you during the sailing portions of the expedition, and you may catch a sighting of reindeer or fox when taking Zodiac excursions to shore.
Your Spitsbergen arctic voyage begins when you board your ship in Oslo, the island’s largest settlement. Enjoy your first view of the island’s rugged, glacier-topped mountains, rising majestically from icy waters.
Expect a new adventure every day as we begin our circumnavigation by heading north and around the island of Spitsbergen, exploring smaller, outlying islands. The variety of incredible wildlife and geological formations found here is astounding. We plan to circumnavigate the island of Spitsbergen, but if conditions are favorable, we will also attempt a circumnavigation of the whole Svalbard archipelago. Every expedition will be different, depending on the weather and ice, but we do hope to visit a few of our favorite landing sites, including the 14th of July Glacier, Ny London, Phippsøya, Alkefjellet and the seldom-visited Kvitøya.
The names may seem strange to you, but each has its own unique appeal. For birders, the 14th of July Glacier is home to purple sandpipers, common eiders, barnacle geese and arctic terns, while Alkefjellet is home to nesting Brünnich’s guillemots (thick-billed murres).
If you’re looking for confirmation that reindeer are real, then you’ll want to have your camera ready for visits to sites like Ny London, Sundneset and Alkhornet. As for the largest land carnivore in the world, searching for polar bears is a constant activity for our Expedition Team. Phippsøya and Isbukta are two of the bears’ preferred places for hunting, which translates into great potential for you to capture them in action.
A big part of appreciating Spitsbergen comes from understanding the culture—not just how people live today, but also how this land was first explored. Whaling was a key industry, and you will see old blubber ovens from the 16th century, plus other evidence of whaling at landing sites such as Smeerenburg. Colorful tundra meadows are complemented by glaciers, and sometimes there is a rare chance to spot beluga whales.
Your adventure ends in Oslo. From here, we’ll transfer you to the airport for your flight home.
Hiking / Trekking
Hiking / Trekking
There is no better way to experience the sights, sounds and even smells of a place than by taking a walk through its landscapes - there are ample opportunities for hiking, walking or trekking, for any level of fitness, at each of our destinations. Yes, even in Antarctica!
For our latest discounts and exclusive deals see our special offers page.
Included in the price of this voyage:
- Itinerary/pre-departure information
- Extensive program of relevant educational presentations
- Advice from experienced team of naturalists and resident photographer
- All Zodiac excursions
- On board Welcome Reception and Welcome Dinner as well as Farewell Dinner (hosted by our Captain)
- All meals during the voyage prepared by onboard professional chefs. Afternoon tea with fresh snacks each afternoon. Coffee, tea, hot chocolate throughout the day (24/7)
- Onboard medical officer
- All activities offered on board (except kayaking and camping on some departures).
- Use of multimedia station to download and process your photos.
- Transfers from the meeting point to the ship and from the ship to the meeting point or airport on the last day of the cruise.
Not included in the price of this voyage:
- International, Domestic or Charter airfares
- Visa and passport fees, airport departure taxes
- Pre-cruise or post-cruise hotel accommodation, meals, transfers in arrival/departure cities (unless otherwise stated in your invoice)
- Personal laundry charges and personal expenses while on board (Postage, telephone calls, drinks, medical expenses)
- Trip interruption / cancellation insurance
- Travel medical insurance including medical evacuation (mandatory)
- Gratuities to staff and crew.