Circumnavigating Svalbard – In the Realm of the Polar Bear

Duration: 10 days

Departures: 6 June 2020
14 June 2020
22 June 2020
17 August 2020
 
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$ 8686 per person
  • Visit Svalbard in the Arctic summer
  • Circumnavigate Spitsbergen
  • Great chance of sighting polar bears
  • See the Midnight Sun in untouched Arctic wilderness
Kayaking near Alkefjellet, Svalbard
Photo: Andrea Klaussner
Circumnavigating Svalbard
Photo: Adobe Stock Vaclav
The Monaco glacier at Liefdefjorden, Spitsbergen, Svalbard
Photo: Martin Johansen

Itinerary

This Arctic expedition cruise is one of a kind! We plan to sail above 80º N, while circumnavigating Spitsbergen under the Midnight Sun. Explore the largest Arctic wilderness in Europe with optional excursions that include hiking, kayaking and traversing a glacier, all providing a good chance to spot the mighty polar bear.
Day 1
Oslo / Longyearbyen
From 59º N to 78º N
Modern architecture in Bjørvika, Oslo
Walk among modern architecture in Bjørvika, Oslo, an area of constant renewal.

Before your evening flight from Oslo to Longyearbyen, spend the day in the museums, parks and cafes of the Norwegian capital. When you arrive in Svalbard, you will discover an entirely different world: a tiny town perched on the edge of the vast Arctic tundra.

On arrival, we transfer you to your hotel for an overnight.

Modern architecture in Bjørvika, Oslo
Walk among modern architecture in Bjørvika, Oslo, an area of constant renewal.
Midnight Sun in Longyearbyen, Svalbard
Midnight Sun in Longyearbyen, Svalbard.
Photo: Petra Wöbke
Polar bear crossing sign, Longyearbyen, Svalbard!
Watch out - there are more polar bears than humans on the Svalbard archipelago!
Photo: Dominic Barrington
Welcome sign Longyearbyen, Svalbard
Welcome to Longyearbyen, Svalbard.
Photo: Hanne Feyling
Longyearbyen, the centre of Svalbard
Longyearbyen is the centre of Svalbard, and a great place for adventure travellers.
Day 2
Longyearbyen
The Norwegian Stronghold in the High Arctic
Welcome sign Longyearbyen, Svalbard
Welcome to Longyearbyen, Svalbard.
Photo: Hanne Feyling

Join an exciting excursion after lunch to get to know this frontier town. The mighty Arctic wilderness dominates life here, but Longyearbyen maintains a lively cultural life, and is considered a prime destination for adventure travelers from around the world. Enjoy the unique atmosphere of this colourful outpost before boarding your ship, MS Spitsbergen.

Day 3-4
North West Spitsbergen National Park
Amazing Fjords with Fascinating History
Polar bear on Kapp Lee, Svalbard
Polar bear on Kapp Lee, Svalbard.
Photo: Stefan Dall

The North West Corner is scattered with rugged islands, beautiful fjords and isolated beaches. This is true wilderness, so the captain will work with the elements to create the best itinerary for your expedition cruise.

We may visit Kongsfjorden, which is considered one of the most beautiful fjord areas in Spitsbergen, with mighty glaciers calving icebergs into the sea. We hope to call on the settlement of Ny-Ålesund, an international centre for research, that hosts a picturesque mix of old and new buildings. Wherever we explore, the Expedition Team will lead exciting optional ice-cruising and landing activities as we explore further north.

Polar bear on Kapp Lee, Svalbard
Polar bear on Kapp Lee, Svalbard.
Photo: Stefan Dall
Wooden house in Ny-Ålesund, Svalbard
Wooden house in Ny-Ålesund, Svalbard
Photo: Stefan Dall
Kayaking, Alkefjellet, Svalbard
Day 5-7
Eastern Svalbard Nature Reserve
Expedition Days in the Arctic
Palanderbukta, Svalbard
Palanderbukta, Svalbard
Photo: Stefan Dall
Walrus on Kvitøya, Svalbard
Walrus on Kvitøya, Svalbard
Photo: Stefan Dall
Day 5-7
Eastern Svalbard Nature Reserve
Expedition Days in the Arctic
Kayaking, Alkefjellet, Svalbard
Kayaking, Alkefjellet, Svalbard
Photo: Andrea Klaussner

Eastern Svalbard boasts the highest population of polar bears on the archipelago – and we have high hopes of spotting one on this journey!  The ocean is full of drifting ice, and we aim to cross 80º N if conditions allow. We hope to sail all the way to Sjuøyane (Seven Islands) at the far north of the archipelago.

Heading south, we will sail through the Hinlopen Strait, where thousands of seabirds mate while walrus dive for clams in the bays.

We continue towards Edgeøya, the third-largest island in the Svalbard archipelago. On its western shores, the landscape is largely un-glaciated, unlike most other places on the east side of Spitsbergen.

Day 8
South Spitsbergen National Park
National Park Beauty
Landing on an Arctic shore in Hornsund
Landing on an Arctic shore in Hornsund.
Photo: Renate Schmidt Vogt

We make our way to the southernmost tip of Spitsbergen, where Hornsund hosts a wonderfully varied landscape and geology. Ice pushed into the fjord early in the season attracts polar bears that hunt on the floes, so with a bit of luck, we may spot some of these magnificent predators

Landing on an Arctic shore in Hornsund
Landing on an Arctic shore in Hornsund.
Photo: Renate Schmidt Vogt
Hiking a moraine ridge in Hornsund, Svalbard
Hiking a moraine ridge in Hornsund, Svalbard
Photo: Keith Pointon
Stunning landscape from Isfjorden
Sailing through stunning landscape in Isfjorden.
Photo: Hanne Feyling
Hiking in Skansebukta
Going for a hike in Skansebukta.
Photo: Stefan Dall
Encountering Svalbard reindeer
Encountering Svalbard reindeer
Photo: Camille Seaman
Day 9
The Isfjord
Fjord, Wilderness
Hiking in Skansebukta
Going for a hike in Skansebukta.
Photo: Stefan Dall

We explore the Isfjord, the most prominent fjord system on Svalbard to take in immense valleys, carved out of the mountains by the giant glaciers that covered the area some ten thousand years ago. Scan for the rich population of Svalbard reindeer here.

Day 10
Longyearbyen / Oslo
End of the Expedition
Mountain landscape surrounding Longyearbyen
Mountain landscape surrounding Longyearbyen
Photo: Stefan Dall

As we arrive back in Longyearbyen after our far north exploration, enjoy the stunning scenery of the icescape that lies just a few hundred miles from the Geographic North Pole. Transfer to the airport for your night flight. Arrival early in the morning in Oslo.

Mountain landscape surrounding Longyearbyen
Mountain landscape surrounding Longyearbyen
Photo: Stefan Dall
Hiking near Longyearbyen surrounded by spectacular landscape
Hiking near Longyearbyen in spectacular landscape.
Photo: Hanne Feyling
Hurtigruten offers unique expedition cruises to some of the most remote and pristine waters of the world. As with all expeditions; nature prevails. Weather, and ice and sea conditions, sets the final framework for all Hurtigruten’s operations. Safety and unparalleled guest experiences are at all times our top priorities. All our indicative itineraries are continuously evaluated for adaptions, whether this is due to constraints the elements unexpectedly presents – or exciting possibilities nature and wildlife offer. That is why we call it an expedition.
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What's included

Included in your voyage

  • Hurtigruten Expedition Cruise in cabin grade of your choice
  • Return economy flights between Oslo and Longyearbyen
  • One hotel night in Longyearbyen before the voyage including breakfast and lunch
  • All transfers in Longyearbyen including an excursion before the voyage

EVERYTHING YOU NEED FOR AN ADVENTURE

  • A rich program of included activities on all voyagesdesigned to immerse you in the destinations you visit, including onshore exploration with the Expedition Team  
  • Professional English-speaking Expedition Team - an international handpicked team of highly educated experts of various academic fields with profound knowledge of the region we sail in  
  • Complimentary wind- and water-resistant jacket   
  • Loan of boots, trekking poles, and equipment needed for optional and included activities  

ENGAGING ONBOARD ACTIVITIES AND EDUCATION

  • In-depth lectures on science, history, biology, geography, geology or culture that provide context to your voyage and help you understand the destinations you will experience  
  • Explorer Science programme, with educational and Citizen Science activities that let you learn about the sights you’ll see while contributing to research
  •  Introduction photo lecture, camera adjustment and tips & tricks, photo and film footage from the voyage shared in an Expedition Logbook
  • Casual opportunities to engage with the Expedition Team and other guestsincluding a welcome event, daily gatherings to recap the day and prepare for the day to come
  • Opportunities to dine and interact with the Expedition Team and officers  
  • Destination-focused onboard library  
  • Port presentations providing destination insight
  • farewell event  

PREMIUM ONBOARD COMFORT

  • All meals including beverages (ship beer and wine, sodas and mineral water in all restaurants)
  • Coffee and tea included throughout the day
  •  Early riser and afternoon treat offered in addition to breakfast, lunch and dinner 
  • Gym, hot tubs and panoramic sauna
  • Free Wi-fi on board for all guests. Be aware that we sail in remote areas with limited connection. Streaming is not supported.
  • No gratuities expected   

Not included in your voyage

  • International flights   
  • Travel insurance  
  • Luggage handling 

Notes

  • All planned activities are subject to weather and ice conditions
A large ship in the water

Your ship

MS Spitsbergen

Year built 2009
Year of refurbishment 2016
Shipyard Estaleiro Navais de Viana do Castelo (POR)
Passenger capacity 335
Beds 243
Car capacity 0
Gross tonnage 7,344
Length 100.54m
Beam 18m
Speed 14.5 knots
A large ship in the water

Our new ship, MS Spitsbergen will take you on a voyage beyond the ordinary.

Read more about MS Spitsbergen

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