Svalbard - The Ultimate Expedition

From Oslo to Oslo OR From Oslo to Oslo
  • All Arctic Cruises
  • Spitsbergen
  • Expedition
  • Small Ship Cruising
  • Wildlife and Nature
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Tour Description

Discover the remote, untouched wilderness and incredible wildlife of the spectacular Svalbard archipelago as you circumnavigate Spitsbergen aboard the MS Spitsbergen. To the west are dramatic glaciers, jagged mountains and deep fjords as well as cultural relics from the first inhabitants of Svalbard. To the east is the barren high Arctic wilderness. Spitsbergen is the land of the polar bear and the midnight sun, the ‘wildlife capital of the Arctic’, home to Svalbard reindeer, Arctic foxes, colonies of walruses, whales, seals and thousands of migratory seabirds nesting on coastal cliffs not to mention over 3,000 polar bears!

Viva's Best Bits...

See beautiful fjords, glaciers, and icebergs in the pristine Arctic wildnerness

Summertime offers good chances of sighting polar bears hunting on the sea ice

Attempt to sail above 80°N and fully circumnavigate the entire archipelago

Tour Itinerary

Day 1
Fly Oslo to Longyearbyen

Your trip starts with a flight from Oslo in the evening. Before your flight, enjoy the museums, parks and cafés of the Norwegian capital. On arrival in Longyearbyen, you will set foot in an entirely different world; a tiny town perched on the edge of the Arctic wilderness. Transfer to your hotel and overnight.

NOTE: We recommend you arrive Oslo at least 1 day prior to departure. Flight times to Longyearbyen are not confirmed until closer to travel.

Day 2
Embarkation in Longyearbyen

After an overnight stay join an excursion to get to know this unique town after lunch. The mighty Arctic wilderness dominates life here, but Longyearbyen maintains a lively cultural life and serves as a prime destination for adventure travellers. Enjoy the atmosphere of this colourful frontier outpost before boarding your ship in the afternoon.

Day 3-5
North West Spitsbergen National Park

The North West Corner is scattered with lovely islands, fjords and beaches, but such majestic sights can be blocked by some heavy sea ice. We use all our expertise and 120 years of experience in these waters to try and navigate the ice in order to access areas for you to explore. One such site is Kongsfjorden, one of the most beautiful fjord areas in Spitsbergen, with mighty glaciers calving icebergs into the sea, framed by stunning mountain formations. We also plan to call on the former mining settlement of Ny-Ålesund, now an international centre for research, with a picturesque mix of old and new buildings. There will likely be many other exciting landings and scenic kayaking opportunities if we are able to move past the ice and go further north.

Day 6-8
Eastern Svalbard Nature Reserve

Eastern Svalbard boasts the highest population of polar bears in the archipelago. You will also be exploring the area in summertime, which is when polar bears and their cubs will be out hunting for seals on the ice floes. We therefore have high hopes that you’ll spot one or more during this journey.

The Arctic Ocean in this part of Svalbard is also full of drifting ice and its frozen seascape changes constantly. Being modern-day explorers, the captain and the Expedition Team will be carefully analysing the density and movements of the sea ice using advanced sonar and live satellite imagery. They will then discuss together and decide where we can safely sail or land. This is what makes this cruise an expedition; it is a true, suspense-filled adventure into the Arctic’s great wilderness, negotiating and adapting to whatever elements nature challenges us with. Ultimately, it is the sea ice that will determine whether we can cross the 80th parallel and head further north to Sjuøyane (Seven Islands).

Day 9-10
South Spitsbergen National Park & Bellsund area

Our aim for these days is to navigate any sea ice and reach the southernmost tip of Spitsbergen. The varied geology here at Hornsund has created a dramatic and photogenic landscape. Ice pushed into the fjord early in the season also attracts polar bears that hunt on the floes, so with a bit of luck, we may spot this magnificent predator.

Day 11
The Isfjord

We will spend the day exploring the Isfjord, the most prominent fjord system on Svalbard. In the inner parts of Isfjorden, the landscape changes constantly. The immense U-shaped valleys, carved out of the mountains by the giant glaciers that covered the area some ten thousand years ago, are home to large populations of the Svalbard reindeer.

Day 12
Disembarkation in Longyearbyen - Fly to Oslo

Every good explorer's voyage comes to an end. Our return to the colourful town of Longyearbyen marks the end of a remarkable voyage that brought us just a few hundred miles from the Geographical North Pole. Transfer to the airport for your flight back to Oslo.

We recommend at least 1-night post-cruise in Oslo. Flight times are not confirmed until closer to travel.

Our 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 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.

Day 1
Fly from Oslo to Longyearbyen

Your trip starts with a flight from Oslo in the evening. Before your flight, enjoy the museums, parks and cafés of the Norwegian capital. On arrival in Longyearbyen, you will set foot in an entirely different world; a tiny town perched on the edge of the Arctic wilderness. Transfer to your hotel and overnight.

NOTE: We recommend you arrive Oslo at least 1 day prior to departure. Flight times to Longyearbyen are not confirmed until closer to travel.

Overnight in a Hotel in Longyearbyen

Day 2
Longyearbyen

After an overnight stay join an excursion to get to know this unique town after lunch. The mighty Arctic wilderness dominates life here, but Longyearbyen maintains a lively cultural life and serves as a prime destination for adventure travellers. Enjoy the atmosphere of this colourful frontier outpost before boarding your ship in the afternoon.

Day 3-5
North West Spitsbergen National Park

The North West Corner is scattered with lovely islands, fjords and beaches, but such majestic sights can be blocked by heavy sea ice. We use all our expertise and 120 years of experience in these waters to try and navigate the ice in order to access areas for you to explore. One such site is Kongsfjorden, one of the most beautiful fjord areas in Spitsbergen, with mighty glaciers calving icebergs into the sea, framed by stunning mountain formations. We also plan to call on the former mining settlement of Ny-Ålesund, now an international centre for research, with a picturesque mix of old and new buildings. There will likely be many other exciting landings and scenic kayaking opportunities if we are able to move past the ice and go further north.

Day 6-8
Eastern Svlabard Nature Reserve

Eastern Svalbard boasts the highest population of polar bears in the archipelago. You will also be exploring the area in summertime, which is when polar bears and their cubs will be out hunting for seals on the ice floes. We therefore have high hopes that you’ll spot one or more during this journey.

The Arctic Ocean in this part of Svalbard is also full of drifting ice and its frozen seascape changes constantly. Being modern-day explorers, the captain and the Expedition Team will be carefully analysing the density and movements of the sea ice using advanced sonar and live satellite imagery. They will then discuss together and decide where we can safely sail or land. This is what makes this cruise an expedition; it is a true, suspense-filled adventure into the Arctic’s great wilderness, negotiating and adapting to whatever elements nature challenges us with. Ultimately, it is the sea ice that will determine whether we can cross the 80th parallel and head further north to Sjuøyane (Seven Islands) at the extreme of the Svalbard archipelago. Again, depending on sea and weather conditions at the time, we will sail east of Nordaustlandet to Kvitøya, before continuing towards Edgeøya, the third largest island in the archipelago.

Day 9-10
South Spitsbergen National Park and Bellsund area

Our aim for these days is to navigate any sea ice and reach the southernmost tip of Spitsbergen. The varied geology here at Hornsund has created a dramatic and photogenic landscape. Ice pushed into the fjord early in the season also attracts polar bears that hunt on the floes, so with a bit of luck, we may spot this magnificent predator.

Day 11
The Isfjord

We will spend the day exploring the Isfjord, the most prominent fjord system on Svalbard. In the inner parts of Isfjorden, the landscape changes constantly. The immense U-shaped valleys, carved out of the mountains by the giant glaciers that covered the area some ten thousand years ago, are home to large populations of the Svalbard reindeer.

Day 12
Disembarkation in Longyearbyen - Fly to Oslo

Every good explorer's voyage comes to an end. Our return to the colourful town of Longyearbyen marks the end of a remarkable voyage that brought us just a few hundred miles from the Geographical North Pole. Transfer to the airport for your flight back to Oslo.

We recommend at least 1-night post-cruise in Oslo. Flight times are not confirmed until closer to travel.

Our 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 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.

What’s Included

Accommodation
  • Included Copy 20 10 nights on board MS Spitsbergen or MS Fram in a Polar Inside Cabin
  • Included Copy 20 1 night hotel in Longyearbyen on Day 1 including breakfast and lunch
  • Included Copy 31 Cabin upgrades available
Food
  • Included Copy 20 Breakfast, lunch and dinner incl. beverages (house beer and wine, sodas, & water) in Aune Restaurant
  • Included Copy 20 Complimentary tea and coffee
  • Included Copy 20 Complimentary reusable water bottle to use at water refill stations on board
  • Included Copy 31 À la carte restaurant Lindstrøm included for suite guests
Fees & Services
  • Included Copy 20 Return flights in economy class between Oslo and Longyearbyen
  • Included Copy 20 All transfers in Longyearbyen including an excursion before the expedition cruise 
  • Included Copy 20 Wind- and water-resistant jacket
  • Included Copy 20 Loan of boots, trekking poles, and all equipment for activities
  • Included Copy 20 Free Wi-Fi on board. Be aware that we sail in remote areas with limited connection. No Streming
  • Included Copy 20 English-speaking Expedition Team who organize and accompany activities onboard and ashore
  • Included Copy 20 Use of the ship’shot tubs, panoramic sauna,and indoor gym
  • Included Copy 7 Optional Excursions and Gratuities
  • Included Copy 20 Professional onboard photographer gives top tips and tricks for the best landscape & wildlife photos
  • Included Copy 31 Gratuities not expected
  • Included Copy 7 International flights, Travel Insurance, additional pre/post cruise arrangements not included
  • Included Copy 7 Optional kayaking, camping, glacier walks/long hikes -subject to weather conditions. Additional cost
Transportation
MS Spitsbergen | Antarctic & Arctic Cruise Ship

max 335 Passengers

MS Fram

max. 318 Passengers

Activities

  • Included Wildlife observation
  • Included Experts on the Expedition Team deliver in-depth lectures on a variety of topics
  • Included Science Center, which has an extensive library and advanced biological and geological microscopes
  • Included Professional onboard photographer gives top tips and tricks for best landscape and wildlife photos
  • Included Use of the ship’shot tubs, panoramic sauna,and indoor gym
  • Included Escorted landings with small expedition boats while in Antarctica
  • Included Optional shore excursions (additional costs apply)
  • Included Optional treatments in the wellness and spa area (additional costs apply)
  • Included All planned activities are subject to weather and ice conditions
Click here for dates & prices
Duration

12 days

Price from

$8,557 USD

Per person, sharing

Based On Lowest Cabin

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