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Classic Arctic Spitsbergen Cruise
Starting in Longyearbyen, we leave civilisation behind. Our aim is to sail this remote polar region in order to experience the arctic wilderness, drift ice, flora and fauna. Our final itinerary is dependant on weather and ice conditions, which have to be assessed during the voyage. The Gulf Stream has allowed the island's 400 km long western coastline to become incredibly rich in animal and plant life, while the remote east is forever under the grips of the arctic winter environment. Some years it is possible to sail through the Hinlopen Strait to attempt a circumnavigation of the archipelago, while other years there is a great deal of ice, which makes it harder to navigate around.
There are departures in July, August and September. We recommend the early tours for those who are keen to see large ice floes and the richest bird life. For those who would rather travel further east, we recommend a tour later in the season. Our specialist guides will ensure we get the most out of the experience, as well as recounting tales of Svalbard's exciting polar explorative heritage - traces of this rich history can be found on several excursions when we go ashore.
The Realm of the Polar Bear
The further north that we sail, the more ice we will meet, and this ice will gradually build up into large ice floes with seals resting on them. This is polar bear country, where the bears hunt for food, here is your best chance of seeing the 'King of the Arctic' in his natural habitat. In Spring there are large ice floes and the richest bird life.
- Search for polar bears - the King of the Arctic is often seen patrolling the ice in search of food
- See an intoxicating mix of wildlife - walruses, Arctic foxes, seals and sea birds
- Discover deep fjords, ice-blue glaciers & sculpted icebergs
- Travel with expert naturalist guides, who will explain all about the wonders of the Arctic
- Regular Zodiac landings to explore the rugged shorelines
1Embark at Longyearbyen
8Disembark at Longyearbyen
Each departure date has its own dedicated trip note, detailing all you need to know about that trip. Whether you've already booked, or weighing up your options, please choose carefully the relevant itinerary for you.
We have the following different versions of the Realm of the Polar Bear - Expedition trip available at present.
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Accommodation7 nights Premium Boat
Trip StaffExpedition Crew, Naturalist(s)
At a nimble 105 metres (345 ft) in length, with a capacity to hold 132 guests, the Expedition is an ideal vessel to ply polar waters. The ship is large enough to provide stability, speed, spacious cabins and ample public space, yet she is small enough to manoeuvre in remote areas and get you close to the action. Ship stabilizers ensure a smooth ride in rough waters, such as the infamous Drake Passage, allowing you to enjoy more of your time at sea. A fleet of ten zodiacs allows passengers to get out and actively explore the remote shores of our destinations. The Expedition is a speedy vessel. A top speed of 16 knots means you'll spend less time getting from A to B, and more time to explore your