Enjoy the immense beauty of Svalbard on this high Arctic adventure, an expedition cruise among whales, walruses, polar bears and a million sea birds
Day 1 - Oslo
Day 2 - Longyearbyen
Day 3 - Kongsfjorden
Day 4 - Smeerenburg
Day 5 - Cruising Pack Ice at 80°
Day 6 - Monacobreen Glacier
Day 7 - Ny Ålesund
Day 8 - Vårsolbukta
Day 9 - Gardermoen
Day 10 - Return Flight
Experience high summer in the Arctic as we cruise around the Svalbard Archipelago, one of the world’s last untouched wildernesses with epic landscapes and hardy wildlife.
Unlike other polar regions, there is no indigenous settler, neither Inuit nor Siberian being established there. The discovery of Svalbard is attributed to the Dutch navigator Willem Barents. A land he calls Spitsbergen (‘Pointed Mountains’), but in a land as old as time, the term ‘Svalbard’ (‘cold coasts’) is mentioned in the most famous Icelandic sagas, the ‘Landmanabok’ or ‘Book of Colonization’, dating from the 13th century.
Join us for a voyage into an ocean at the end of the world, cruise through the western and northern regions of this vast glaciated archipelago and discover snow covered mountains, stark tundra, sea stacks and ice cliffs. Follow in the tracks of famous explorers, travel along imposing glaciers, through drift ice and encounter walruses, Arctic foxes and reindeer – and of course meet with the fabulous polar bears as you immerse yourself in an Arctic wonderland: frozen, serene and seemingly otherworldly.
On Board Lectures
Excursions by Zodiac
Access to Remote Bays
Group Size: 8 – 28
Day 1 Fly from London Heathrow to Oslo. Transfer to the 4-star Thon Hotel Europa for overnight.
Day 2 Fly to Longyearbyen, the world’s most northern passenger airport on Spitsbergen archipelago, only 1,300 km from the North Pole, lying within the Arctic Circle. Transfer to the MV Ocean Atlantic to embark. (B, D)
Day 3 Cruise out through Isfjorden and north to Fuglehuken, the headland at the northern end of Prins Karls Fjorland onto Lilienhook Glacier in Kross Fjord, where glaciers flow from the mountains and converge to provide magnificent views. Travel to the south side of Kongsfjorden and experience the unique cultural heritage site of Ny-London. See the remains of the mining facility established in 1911 by the English, Northern Exploration Company, and Ernest Mansfield. Cruise north to Fuglehuken. (B, L, D)
Day 4 Continue to the former whaling stations at Smeerenburg and Fuglensongen Island. Translated as ‘blubber town’, Smeerenburg is on a flat peninsula on the south-eastern end of Amsterdamøya, where the terrain permitted the construction of a whaling station which the Dutch exploited from as early as the 17th century. (B, L, D)
Day 5 Enjoy the Arctic’s diversity; deserted beaches, green tundra and snow-capped mountain. Cruising through the pack ice-polar bear country at 80° - admiring spectacular glaciers that dominate the breath-taking scenery. (B, L, D)
Day 6 Cruise to Andøyan at 79° on Liefdefjord to a small group of islands also known as Duck-islands, cruise close to the impressive Monacobreen glacier. The waters on the glacier are a popular feeding place for thousands of kittiwakes and where the occasional polar bears can be spotted. Go ashore in the Liefdefjord and enjoy a walk through the tundra of Reindyrsflya whose floral biodiversity in these climes is incredible. (B, L, D)
Day 7 The fjord system at Kongsfjorden and Krossfjorden boasts numerous bird cliffs, home to a multitude of birdlife. Sailing in to Ny-Ålesund we pass Stuphallet cliff with a great colony of northern fulmars, blacklegged kittiwakes and Atlantic puffins. At the Ossian Sars bird cliff, black and Brünnich’s guillemots nest. Guided walking tour. Protected as bird sanctuaries since 1973, the islands and islets in Kongsfjorden hold a large nesting population of eider. Continue to Blomstrandhalvøya near the northern side of Kongsfjorden. (B, L, D)
Day 8 Cruise south to Bellsund, Vårsolbukta and Calypsobyen. At Vårsolbukta see the auk cliff and the lush moss tundra on which the Svalbard reindeer love to graze. On the southern shore of Bellsund, there is a cultural heritage site erected in 1918-1919 by the Northern Exploration Company. The beach (Calypsostranda) and the cluster of buildings (Calypsobyen) were named after the HMS Calypso, which belonged to the British Navy Training Squadron that surveyed the area in 1895. Cruise back to Longyearbyen. (B, L, D)
Day 9 Fly to Oslo and overnight at 4-star Quality Airport Hotel Gardermoen. (B)
Day 10 Return flight to Heathrow. (B)
Whilst the vessel carries more, the group size specified refers to transfers and excursions.
Excursions are by Zodiac or on foot, sometimes over uneven ground and with some incline, so a reasonable level of mobility is required. There will be a combination of wet and dry landings.
Animal sightings are not guaranteed.
The programme may be altered due to navigational factors with locks, water levels or congestion at certain sites.
A modern 4-star hotel in the centre of Oslo, close to Karl Johans Gate shopping street. Café, bar, gym and WiFi (free). 168 rooms with hairdryer, safe, mini-bar, tea/coffee making facilities and satellite TV.
A modern 4-star hotel close to Oslo Gardermoen Airport. Restaurant, bar, gym and WiFi (free). 455 rooms with hairdryer and satellite TV.
The 459 ft. MV Ocean Atlantic is the perfect vessel for expedition cruising, with an international ice class rating of 1B. The shallow draft allows for extended voyages into isolated fjords and bays, creating exciting adventures for the intrepid traveller. Renovated in 2016 and with a crew of 140, accommodation is for 214 passengers (198 in Antarctica). With five decks and two lifts, facilities include elegant public areas, a restaurant, panoramic lounge, library, observation deck, lecture theatre, sauna, pool and gym. Cabins have twin or double beds, hairdryer, safe and TV.
Cat. E Inside (215 sq. ft.) – Deck 5
Cat. G Outside Single with porthole (97 sq. ft.) – Deck 4
Cat. D Outside (113 sq. ft.) with porthole – Deck 4
Cat. C Outside (129 sq. ft.) with window – Deck 5
Cat. B Outside (215 sq. ft.) with window (limited view) and seated area – Decks 7 & 8
Cat. A Outside (204-258 sq. ft.) with window and seated area – Deck 5
Premium Suite (376 sq. ft.) 2-room suite – Deck 5
per person in a twin/double room Cat. D cabin
SAS from Heathrow
per person in a twin/double room Cat. D cabin
SAS from Heathrow
Supplements per person
Single supplement £2295
Cat. C cabin £150 (2022 £445)
Single supplement £2545
SAS Plus from £515
Arrival transfer by Fly Bus add £25
Departure transfer included with the group
Air travel and taxes, all port charges, AECO fees, transfers, 2 night's accommodation, 7-night cruise, breakfast daily, full board on cruise including complimentary tea and coffee, on board lectures, excursions, services of expedition leaders, local expert guides and representatives. If our specially negotiated airfares are unavailable at the time of booking, a supplement may apply.
Travel insurance, visa procurement, optional excursions, tipping, porterage, any government taxes or compulsory charges introduced after publication.
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