Have questions? We're here.
A zodiac landing on remote shores

Around Spitsbergen

Example 10 Day Cruise aboard Ortelius
Talk with an expert
Customize any aspect of your Arctic trip. 1.800.344.6118
Help Me Plan My Trip
Ask a Question
Embark on this 10-day voyage around Spitsbergen, where you have chances to see the King of the Arctic, walrus, reindeer, various bird species, and surprisingly beautiful flora. Aboard the Ortelius, explore the Arctic shores on this polar expedition cruise. Take in the history of the region with visits to museums, research centers, and former whaling sites. Wildlife watch as your journey takes you through icy waters past glaciers, beaches, and tundra. 

Day-by-Day Summary

Day 1 : Longyearbyen | Embark
Day 2 : Glaciers and Wildlife on the Western Coast
Day 3 : Andoya and Monaco Glacier
Day 4 : Seven Islands
Day 5 : Laagøya | Sorg Fjord
Day 6 : Hinlopen Strait
Day 7 : Freemansundet
Day 8 : Hornsund Glaciers and Wildlife Sightings
Day 9 : Ahlstrandhalvøya | Recherchefjorden
Day 10 : Longyearbyen | Disembark

Highlights

  • Discover the unspoiled wilderness of Spitsbergen
  • Spot iconic wildlife like polar bear, arctic fox, reindeer, seals and more
  • Explore the varied landscapes from beaches to tundra and glaciers
  • Watch for the elusive beluga whale

Ship

Ortelius

Places Visited

  • Arctic
  • Europe
  • Norway
  • Scandinavia
  • Svalbard
  • 14th of July Glacier
  • Ahlstrandhalvøya
  • Andoya
  • Freemansundet
  • Hinlopen Strait (Hinlopenstretet)
  • Hornsund
  • Krossfjorden
  • Laagoya
  • Longyearbyen
  • Monacobreen (Monaco Glacier)
  • Ny Alesund
  • Phippsoya
  • Seven Islands (Sjuoyane)
  • Sorg Fjord
  • Spitsbergen

Activities

Trip Type

  • Small Ship

Activity Level

Relaxed

Trip Snapshots

A zodiac landing on remote shores Colorful flora of Spitsbergen Zodiacs will take you close to the wildlife Polar bear relaxing on an iceberg. It's a beautiful day in the Arctic

Day 1 Longyearbyen | Embark

Arrive in Longyearbyen, the administrative capital of the Spitsbergen archipelago of which West Spitsbergen is the largest island. Before embarking there is an opportunity to stroll around this former mining town, whose parish church and Polar Museum are well worth visiting. In the early evening the ship sails out of Isfjorden.

Day 2 Glaciers and Wildlife on the Western Coast

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Heading north along the west coast, arrive by morning in Krossfjorden, where you take to the Zodiacs for an exhilarating cruise along the sculpted front of the 14th of July Glacier. On the surprisingly green slopes near the glacier, a colorful variety of flowers bloom, while large numbers of kittiwakes and Brünnich’s guillemots nest on the nearby cliffs. There is also a good chance of spotting opportunistic arctic foxes, who patrol the base of the cliffs in case a hapless chick falls from its nest, and bearded seals, who cruise this scenic fjord.

In the afternoon sail to Ny Ålesund, the world’s most northerly settlement. Once a mining village - served by the world’s most northerly railway, which can still be seen - Ny Ålesund is now a research center. Close to the village is a breeding ground for barnacle geese, pink-footed geese and arctic terns. Visitors interested in the history of arctic exploration can walk to the anchoring mast used by Amundsen and Nobile in the airship Norge in 1926 and Nobile in the airship Italia in 1928 before their flights to the North Pole.

Day 3 Andoya and Monaco Glacier

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Near the mouth of Liefdefjorden, go ashore for a walk on the tundra island of Andøya. Many common eiders and pink-footed geese nest here, and the more rare king eider may also be seen. Sailing into Liefdefjorden, cruise near the face of the impressive Monaco Glacier. The waters of the glacier front are a favorite feeding spot for thousands of kittiwakes, and occasionally polar bears are seen on the glacier.

Day 4 Seven Islands

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Today reach the northernmost point at Phippsøya, in the Seven Islands north of Nordaustlandet. Here you are at 81 degrees north, just 540 miles from the geographic North Pole. Polar bears inhabit this region, along with ivory gulls. Sit for several hours in the pack ice, taking in the spectacular surroundings and seeing a ross gull, before turning south again.

Day 5 Laagøya | Sorg Fjord

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Visit Laagøya today, a low island with a big lagoon where a big herd of walrus tends to congregate. Sabine’s gulls nest on the island, as well. At Sorg Fjord you may find another herd of walruses not far from the graves of 17th-century whalers. On a nature walk, you may encounter families of ptarmigans.

Day 6 Hinlopen Strait

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Sail into Hinlopen Strait, home to bearded seal, ringed seal, polar bear, and ivory gull. Navigate the ice floes of Lomfjordshalvøya in zodiacs and explore the bird cliffs of Alkefjellet with thousands of Brünnich’s guillemots. On the east side of Hinlopen Strait, attempt a landing at Augustabukta on Nordaustlandet, home to reindeer, pink-footed goose, breeding ivory gull, and walrus. Near Torrelneset, explore the polar desert of Nordaustlandet, next to the world’s third largest ice cap, which meets the sea nearby. Walk along beautiful coastline covered in smooth rocks, sculpted by the surf over thousands of years, and possibly encounter walrus along the way. 

Day 7 Freemansundet

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
In Freemansundet plan to land at Sundneset on the island of Barentsøya to visit an old trapper's hut and then take a brisk walk across the tundra in search of Spitsbergen reindeer and barnacle geese. Later cruise south to Diskobukta on the west side of Edgeøya. After a Zodiac cruise through the shallow bay, land on a beach littered with whale bones and tree trunks, which have drifted here from Siberia. You can also climb to the rim of a narrow gully which is inhabited by thousands of kitttiwakes, together with black guillemots and piratical glaucous gulls. During the breeding season, the base of the cliffs is patrolled by arctic foxes and polar bears, especially females with young cubs, searching for young birds that have fallen from the nesting ledges.

Day 8 Hornsund Glaciers and Wildlife Sightings

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Start the day quietly cruising the side fjords of the spectacular Hornsund area of southern Spitsbergen, enjoying the scenery of towering mountain peaks. Hornsundtind rises to 1,431m while Bautaen shows why early Dutch explorers gave the name ‘Spitsbergen’ - pointed mountains - to the island. There are also 14 magnificent glaciers in the area and very good chances of encounters with seals and polar bears. Visit the Polish research station where the friendly staff give you insight into their research projects. Behind the station the mountains are home to thousands of pairs of nesting little auks.

Day 9 Ahlstrandhalvøya | Recherchefjorden

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Today land on Ahlstrandhalvøya at the mouth of Van Keulenfjorden. Here piles of beluga skeletons (the beluga is a small white whale), the remains of 19th-century slaughter, are yet another reminder of the consequences of thoughtless exploitation.

Day 10 Longyearbyen | Disembark

  • 1 Breakfast
Return to Longyearbyen and disembark for the transfer to the airport and the flight to Oslo and home.

Ortelius

Per person starting at
$4,900
Twin porthole cabin
Select a Date
Quadruple Porthole
4 quadruple cabins with bunk beds and private facilities (these can also be used as triple or twin cabins). Spacious outside cabins with a minimum of two portholes or windows per cabin
Triple Porthole Cabin
Select a Date
Triple Porthole
2 triple cabins with bunk beds and private facilities. These cabins are spacious with a minimum of two portholes or windows per cabin.
Twin Porthole on the Ortelius
Select a Date
Twin Porthole
23 twin cabins with portholes, private toilet and shower and 2 single lower berths. Spacious outside cabins with a minimum of two portholes or windows per cabin.
Twin Window on the Ortelius
Select a Date
Twin Window
10 twin cabins with windows, private toilet and shower and 2 single lower berths. Spacious outside cabins with a minimum of two portholes or windows per cabin
Twin Deluxe on the Ortelius
Select a Date
Twin Deluxe
6 superior cabins with double beds, private toilet and shower and a separate day room. Spacious outside cabins with a minimum of two portholes or windows per cabin
Superior Suite on the Ortelius
Select a Date
Superior
1 suite with a double bed, private toilet and shower and a separate day room. Spacious outside cabins with a minimum of two portholes or windows per cabin.

Notes

- Rates are quoted in U.S. dollars and represent costs per person, double occupancy.
- Cabins are available for single occupancy at 1.7 times the double occupancy rate.
- Due to the extreme nature of itinerary destinations, travel insurance is mandatory for all cruises aboard the Ortelius - including medical, accident and repatriation/evacuation insurance.

The ice conditions will determine the sailing plan, either the North or around Spitsbergen itinerary.

All itineraries are for guidance only. Programs may vary depending on local ice and weather conditions and in order to take advantage of opportunities to see wildlife. Flexibility is paramount for expedition cruises.


Fares include:
- Voyage aboard the indicated vessel as indicated in the itinerary
- All meals throughout the voyage aboard the ship including snacks, coffee and tea
- All shore excursions and activities throughout the voyage by Zodiac
- Program of lectures by noted naturalists and leadership by experienced expedition staff
- Transfers and baggage handling between the airport, hotels and ship only for those passengers on the group flights to and from Longyearbyen
- All miscellaneous service taxes and port charges throughout the program
- AECO fees and governmental taxes
- Comprehensive pre-departure material

Not included:
Any airfare, whether on scheduled or charter flights; pre- and post land arrangements; transfers to / from the vessel outside Spitsbergen; passport and visa expenses; Government arrival and departure taxes; meals ashore; baggage, cancellation and personal insurance (which is mandatory); excess baggage charges and all items of a personal nature such as laundry, bar, beverage charges and telecommunication charges; and the customary gratuity at the end of the voyages for stewards and other service personnel aboard (guidelines will be provided).

Please note: It is agreed that if fuel prices will exceed US Dollar $120 per Barrel Brent 90 days prior to departure the Ortelius reserves the right to levy a fuel surcharge of US Dollar 25 per passenger per night.

Included

  • 9 Breakfasts, 8 Lunches, 9 Dinners
Payment & Cancellation Policies
Change & customize to make it yours.
Mary Curry
Mary C

We Love to Talk Travel

Call 1.800.344.6118
or
Chat Now
Our guide and driver were very good with their knowledge and were very helpful with our questions. It was a very pleasant visit that would have been impossible to do on our own. Hotels and restaurants were fantastic. The special places we got to go to, like the kitchens, were great. Enjoyed the entire trip!
Meyer Smolen

Why Travel With Adventure Life

More Reasons
Us with our Maasai guide Dennis
Tailored to You
Tell us your travel interests, dreams and desires, then let our experts tailor the perfect trip for you!
Monks conversing in a Buddist temple
Peace of Mind
You can have confidence in our experts' dedication to traveler safety, comfort, & providing a seamless trip.
A pair of friendly sea lions
Responsible Travel
We are fully committed to low impact travel that not only preserves but gives back to the amazing places we visit.
A man photographs a King Penguin at only a few feet away.
Insider Access
Our personal expertise & experience, local partners in our destinations, & access to over 150 small ships are all invaluable to designing your unique journey.

Awards and Accolades

All News