Realm of the polar bear
With a spectacular panorama of ice and water, rugged mountains, and expansive tundra, the Svalbard Archipelago is unequaled in wild splendor. It also has an impressive array of wildlife and a rich human history (Spitsbergen, the largest island of the archipelago, was known to the Vikings and subsequently visited by whalers, fur traders, and explorers). Our goal on this Arctic expedition with frequent shore stops is to hike or simply enjoy the amazing scenery, and to undertake cruises in Zodiacs, often close to sea cliffs and abundant wildlife, which includes polar bears (the stars of the show!), beluga whales, walrus, reindeer, Arctic fox, and a huge array of avian fauna. You'll travel in comfort aboard ice-strengthened polar expedition ships that are ideal home bases for exploring this remarkable wilderness.
Our ships feature a small fleet of kayaks for paddling options (weather and ice conditions permitting). A perfect way to enhance your adventure to the Arctic!
Easy ship travel, optional walks and Zodiac rides, optional sea kayaking
- Fantastic scenery-a savage land of rock and ice, and home to a rich range of bird and animal life
- Make the most of the long daylight hours with frequent shore excursions to search for polar bears and Zodiac cruises to see walrus
Duration: 11 days Start Location: Longyearbyen End Location: LongyearbyenDownload Detailed Itinerary
Day 1 : Longyearbyen (Embarkation Day)
Arrive in Longyearbyen on Spitsbergen Island, the main settlement of the Svalbard Archipelago. Board the ship and depart for a spectacular sail through the Isfjorden and along Prins Karls Forland.
Days 2 - 4 : Ny Alesund and Western Svalbard
These days are spent exploring the coast and generally moving in a clockwise direction. Stops may include Ny Alesund, the northernmost village in the world at 78°55'N, and the 14th of July Glacier, home to numerous bird colonies and species.
Days 5 - 7 : Smeerenburg and Northern Svalbard
We continue our exploration around the northern coast of Spitsbergen, visiting the large dovekie colony on Fuglesangenoya Island, taking a hike near the former whaling station of Smeerenburg, and searching for polar bears on Phippsoya (at 81 degrees north latitude).
Days 8 - 10 : Bourbonhamna and Southwestern Svalbard
We search for beluga whales near Bourbonhamna before heading into the glacier-filled bays around Hornsund and southwestern Svalbard.
Day 11 : Longyearbyen (Disembark) – Depart
Arrive back in Longyearbyen and depart.
DATES: Best time to go: June - August Departures: Jun 26, 2013 - Jul 6, 2013 This trip is only 10 days in length and ends on July 5. Jul 5 - 15, 2013 Jul 27, 2013 - Aug 6, 2013 Aug 6 - 16, 2013
2013 Prices: *Special Offer* New bookings as of April 20, 2013 will receive Complimentary Domestic Flights between Oslo and Longyearbyen, plus one night hotel pre-cruise in Oslo or Longyearbyen, plus airport transfers in Longyearbyen, plus complimentary use of shipboard Bushnell Binoculars. Or choose the Optional Air Credit of $1000 instead of booking the above package (for example, if you are using miles to book your flights, you might opt for the credit instead).
$750 for Optional Kayaking
Akademik Sergey Vavilov
Built in Finland in the late 1980s for the Russian Academy of Science, Akademik Sergey Vavilov's original mission was to perform sensitive hydro-acoustic ocean research. As such, she is exceptionally quick, quiet and stable.
- Intimate viewing of Arctic wildlife, icebergs and more
- Kayaking and camping options ramp up the adventure quotient
- 2 fully enclosed lifeboats for safety in all conditions
- Unmatched stability and superior speed means efficient time at sea
- Onboard gym, two saunas and library allow you to relax between shore visits
- Comfortable, friendly atmopshere: just 96 guests
Properties shown are representative of the accommodations we use on this trip, may not be inclusive of all accommodations we use, and are subject to change.
Expert leadership is the key to an exciting, unforgettable experience. Our trips feature gifted leaders for whom leading trips is a true vocation. Besides showing you wonders you’d never find on your own, they make sure everything runs smoothly and safely without a hitch. They are knowledgeable about all aspects of your trip, and take great pleasure in sharing their insights with you. More than just guides, they positively elevate your experience by being teachers, companions, and the best of friends. You’ll be in good hands with them every step of the way. These trips are often led by:
Andrew is the Managing Director of One Ocean Expeditions Inc. (our partner in the Polar Regions) and brings his passion for polar regions and their conservation into any discussion he can. An adventurer in his own right, Andrew is an accomplished ocean racing sailor. He led a team that won a race across the Atlantic Ocean in a 30-foot sailboat; he has sailed around Cape Horn in a Southern Ocean gale and competitively raced yachts and high performance dinghies all over the world. Andrew is also a published photographer and an avid snowboarder, spending his quiet time in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. Andrew grew up on Cape Breton Island in Nova Scotia, Canada and has brought his East Coast sense of humor with him all along the way. After earning a degree from Queen's University in Kingston, Ontario, Canada, he played a strategic planning role for a major Canadian player in the transportation industry. With around five years in the corporate world under his belt but searching for a life of meaning, Andrew decided to "run away to sea". What started as a three-month commitment to manage a ship transformed itself into a very successful entrepreneurial career in expedition cruising where he could apply his experience and his passion. With a reputation for innovation and attention to detail, Andrew has become well known in the expedition cruise industry for the high quality expedition cruise programs he develops. He is also noted for his attention to vital areas of safety and his commitment to environmental protection.