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.
Day Place Highlights Day 1 Oslo, Norway Arrive in Norway and explore this vibrant city Day 2 Longyearbyen Embark on your voyage in Longyearbyen Days 3 - 13 Circumnavigate Spitsbergen View Polar bears, walrus, seabirds and incredible landscapes Day 14 Longyearbyen Disembark the ship in Longyearbyen, fly to Oslo
The expedition ship Ocean Adventurer is designed to carry 132 travelers in comfort and has a classic style and feel. She was originally built in Yugoslavia in 1976 and has undergone several renovations; in 1999, 2002 and her most significant in 2017. The Ocean Adventurer is ice-strengthened and a beautiful small ship upon which to discover the wonders of Spitsbergen, Greenland and Iceland.
Launched in 2019, The World Explorer is fully equipped to venture to the High Arctic. This ship takes 176 guests and each cabin has either a private walk-out balcony or a Juliet balcony for direct ocean views as well as an en-suite bathroom. There are many comfortable public areas to relax after a day filled with excursions including the glass domed observation lounge, the explorer lounge and a dedicated lecture theatre where the educational program is conducted. There are health and wellness facilities featuring an outdoor running track, small gym, sauna and spa.
Your arctic voyage begins in Oslo, Norway’s vibrant capital city. If you arrive early, there are many museums, restaurants and green spaces to keep you busy before spending the night at the airport hotel.
This morning you will join a group transfer to the airport and fly from Oslo to Longyearbyen. This is the largest settlement in Spitsbergen. You will have a little bit of time to take a look around this remote town. Your Spitsbergen Arctic cruise begins in Longyearbyen when you board your ship. Enjoy views of the rugged, glacier-topped mountains, rising from icy waters.
Every day is a new adventure as you circumnavigate Spitsbergen. First head North where you will explore smaller, outlying islands. There is an incredible variety wildlife and geological formations found here.
Every expedition will be different, depending on the weather and ice, but we do hope to visit a few of our favourite landing sites, including the 14th of July Glacier, Ny London, Phippsøya, Alkefjellet and the seldom-visited Kvitøya.
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).
Stopping at sites such as Ny London, Sundneset and Alkhornet you may spot reindeer. The Expedition Team will keep an eye out for polar bears during the voyage and no doubt you will spot a few, particularly in Phippsøya and Isbukta which are two of the bears’ preferred places for hunting, where you may even see them in action.
Visit old waling sites from the 16th century at Smeerenburg. You will see colourful tundra meadows which look particulauly striking as icebergs bob in the bays. Keep your eyes out for the rare beluga whales.
Your adventure ends in the frontier-style settlement of Longyearbyen. Farewell the expedition team and from here, you will be transferred to the airport for the charter flight to Oslo.