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A walrus relaxes on the snow.

Central Spitsbergen, Aurora Borealis

Example 8 Day Cruise aboard Noorderlicht
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Adventure into the heart of Spitsbergen on this 8-day Arctic cruise aboard the two-mast sailing vessel, Noorderlicht. Learn about the region's history with a visit to the Svalbard Museum and excursions to old whaling and mining settlements. Sail into a variety of fjords including the magnificent Bellsund fjord system. The geology and landscapes within the fjords are breathtaking with towering mountains, steep cliffs, and calving glaciers. Throughout the cruise there are endless opportunities to view unique Arctic wildlife including polar bear, arctic fox, walrus, beluga whale, and a myriad of sea birds. In addition, the autumn Spitsbergen voyages, at the onset of winter, are ideal for observing the Aurora borealis. Spitsbergen's distinctive scenery, history, and wildlife will sure to excite all travelers. 

Day-by-Day Summary

Day 1 : Embark in Longyearbyen, Spitsbergen
Days 2-5 : Bellsund
Day 6 : Barentsburg | Colesbukta
Day 7 : Isfjorden
Day 8 : Disembark in Longyearbyen


  • Marvel at the brilliant colors of the northern lights
  • Sail near ice floes and into the region's complex fjord systems
  • Visit important historical sites and learn about Spitsbergen's past
  • Observe abundant wildlife including polar bear, arctic fox, walrus and more



Places Visited


Trip Type

  • Small Ship

Activity Level


Trip Snapshots

A walrus relaxes on the snow. The beauty of the Aurora Borealis. Walking through vast arctic landscapes. Giant whale jaw in the arctic Glaciers and beautiful arctic tundra.

Day 1 Embark in Longyearbyen, Spitsbergen

After arriving in Longyearbyen, the ‘capital’ (actually the administrative center) of Spitsbergen, you may wish to visit the Svalbard Museum, which has an interesting collection on the history of Spitsbergen, the mining industry, and polar exploration. Sail in the afternoon, setting course for Alkhornet, a prominent cliff at the mouth of Isfjorden. Below the cliffs one often sees arctic foxes and reindeer. Continue to Trygghamna to visit the remains of a 17th-century English whaling station and an 18th-century Russian Pomor station.

Day 2-5 Bellsund

  • Ship
  • 4 Breakfasts, 4 Lunches, 4 Dinners
Leave Trygghamna early in the morning and sail to the north side of Bellsund. Bellsund is a fjord system with two major branches, Van Mijenfjord and Van Keulenfjord, and one smaller side bay, Recherchefjord. The geology is fascinating and has created amazing landscapes, such as the long, narrow island of Akseløya that blocks Van Mijenfjord almost completely. In Fridtjovhamna, the calving glacier Fridtjovbreen is surrounded by picturesque mountains. The rich wildlife of the area has attracted hunters throughout several centuries - walk in their footsteps and see remains of their huts - for example, at Ahlstrandhalvøya. Recherchefjord is one of the places in Spitsbergen with the highest concentration of historical sites, dating back to 17th-century whalers and the mining period of the early 20th century. The glacier Recherchebreen ends at a lagoon, likely to be frozen in October, with many smaller icebergs. Polar bear are likely to be present anywhere in the Bellsund area, so keep a keen watch to find them. Also be on the lookout for beluga whales in this area. 

Day 6 Barentsburg | Colesbukta

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Visit Barentsburg, the only inhabited Russian settlement in Spitsbergen. There is also a possibility of exploring the abandoned Russian coal mining settlement of Colesbukta.

Day 7 Isfjorden

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Sail into the inner reaches of the Isfjorden system marveling at its spectacular scenery and geology. Many of the smaller fjord arms may still be locked in ice so you experience expedition cruising at its best.

Day 8 Disembark in Longyearbyen

  • 1 Breakfast
Depart by scheduled flight from Longyearbyen to Oslo.


Per person starting at
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Twin Non Private
The ‘Noorderlicht’ provides accommodation for 20 travellers in comfortable twin cabins. All cabins have upper and lower berths, a cupboard and wash basin with hot and cold water. Shared shower (4) and toilet (5) facilities are conveniently located.


- 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 Noorderlicht - including medical, accident and repatriation/evacuation insurance.

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
- On Spitsbergen voyages: 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 materials

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
- 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 Noorderlicht reserves the right to levy a fuel surcharge of US Dollar 25 per passenger per night.


  • 7 Breakfasts, 6 Lunches, 7 Dinners
Payment & Cancellation Policies
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Kassandra Miller
Kassandra M

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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

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