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pair of killer whales

Arctic Ocean - Fair Isle, Jan Mayen, Ice Edge, Spitsbergen, Birding

Aberdeen - Longyearbyen - Example 10 Day Cruise aboard MV Plancius
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Experience the 10-day cruise aboard MV Plancius as you journey through the stunning Arctic Ocean. From the city of Aberdeen to the remote island of Jan Mayen, each destination offers unique experiences and breathtaking scenery. Explore the rugged landscapes of Fair Isle, where you can experience local culture and witness incredible seabird breeding grounds. Marvel at the volcanic wonders of Jan Mayen, with its snow-capped peaks and dramatic glaciers. Keep an eye out for majestic whales and playful seals as you navigate the icy waters of the Arctic. Sail along the edge of the ice, spotting polar bears and seabirds along the way. Visit the stunning fjords of Spitsbergen, where walruses, Arctic foxes, and reindeer roam. End your journey in Longyearbyen.
An Arctic fox gazes across the landscapeAdmire the colorful houses of LongyearbyenWhale sighting in Polar waters!Visit the colorful town of Longyearbyen in the far northGlass-still waters around Spitsbergenpair of killer whales
Highlights
  • Explore Aberdeen, the Granite City, renowned for floral beauty
  • Experience Fair Isle's charm, known for knitwear and seabird breeding
  • Explore Jan Mayen and keep a lookout for minke, fin, orca, and blue whales
Activity Level: Variable
Activity options vary depending on destination and operator. Activity level is determined by the range and intensity of activities you choose to participate in. Discuss with your Trip Planner which options are best for you.
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Full Itinerary

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Day 1: Aberdeen | Embark

You arrive in Aberdeen, the Granite City, frequent winner of the Britain in Bloom competition. This is the true start of your trip. Several cetaceans, including orcas (killer whales), are native to these seas. To the south, you see the lighthouse on Girdle Ness which was designed by the grandfather of Robert Louis Stevenson, the famed Scottish writer who gave us such classics as Treasure Island and Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. More passengers join you in Aberdeen.

Day 2: Fair Isle

Plan to stay the day on Fair Isle, an island in the Shetlands whose seventy-odd inhabitants are known for their beautiful knitwear. This is a fantastic location with accessible seabird breeding grounds, and you may even spot grey seals.

Day 3-4: Jan Mayen

You sail north to the Norwegian island of Jan Mayen, 300 nautical miles northeast of Iceland. Your two days at sea do not pass idly, however. Keep a close lookout for any spouts of water from the surrounding seas, heralding the arrival of a minke, fin, orca, or blue whale.

Day 5: Mt. Beerenberg, Jan Meyen

Jan Mayen is a stark volcanic island crowned by the snow-capped summit of Mt. Beerenberg. From the slopes of this imposing 2,300-meter-high (7,545 feet) volcano, broken glaciers grasp out into the frigid sea. With permission from the Norwegian authorities, you can now visit the weather station. You can also walk to the remains of a 17th-century Dutch whaling station amid the thick moss beds of this stark volcanic landscape.

Day 6-8: At Sea

Basking in the midnight sun, you sail north along the edge of the sea ice in search of bowhead whales, harp seals, polar bears, and a variety of seabirds. You then change direction after about 79° north, cutting west to the rocky edges of the continental shelf of West Spitsbergen. Here you have a good chance of seeing fin whales and – near the glacial mouths of the gaping Spitsbergen fjords – surfacing minke whales.

Day 9: Forlandsundet

Forlandsundet, between the main island of Spitsbergen and the narrow Prins Karls Forland, is a place of great beauty and fascinating wildlife. Walruses sometimes haul out here.  Alternatively, you might sail into St. Johns Fjord or head south to the mouth of Isfjorden, landing at Alkhornet. Seabirds nest on these cliffs, Arctic foxes search below for fallen eggs and chicks, and reindeer graze the sparse vegetation.

Day 10: Longyearbyen | Disembark

  • 1 Breakfast
Every adventure, no matter how grand, must eventually come to an end. You disembark in Longyearbyen, the administrative center of Spitsbergen, taking home memories that will accompany you wherever your next adventure lies. 

Ship/Hotel

MV Plancius

MV Plancius
MV Plancius

Dates & Prices

My Preferred Start Date

Per person starting at
$2,750 2-3 travelers
Quadruple Porthole
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Quadruple Porthole
4 cabins with private facilities, 2 bunk beds. (ca. 15 m2)
Quadruple Porthole
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Triple Porthole
4 cabins with private facilities, 2 bunk beds. (ca. 15 m2)
Twin porthole cabin
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Twin with Porthole
9 twin private cabins with porthole. Two Lower berths. (ca. 15 m2)
Twin with window
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Twin with Window
26 twin private cabins with window. Two Lower berths (ca. 15 m2)
Twin Deluxe
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Twin Deluxe
2 twin private deluxe cabins. Lower berths - two single beds.(ca. 15 m2)
Superior
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Superior
10 twin superior cabins. Lower berth - double bed. (ca. 21 m2)

Notes

- Rates are quoted in U.S. dollars and represent costs per person, double or triple occupancy. Request the Twin or Triple Share Program where you are matched with a cabin mate of the same gender. Even if a cabin mate is not found for you, no single supplement will be charged.
- Single occupancy: All cabins 1.7 times the share twin price
-Children between the ages of 3-15 will be discounted 40% in triple or quad cabins, one child per cabin.
- Due to the extreme nature of itinerary destinations, travel insurance is mandatory for all cruises aboard the Plancius - including medical, accident and repatriation/evacuation insurance.
Included
  • 9 Breakfasts, 8 Lunches, 9 Dinners
  • 9 Nights Accommodations
  • Accommodations as listed
  • Ground transportation as listed
  • Activities as listed
  • Meals as listed
  • Access to a 24-7 Emergency line while traveling
  • Program of lectures by noted naturalists and leadership by experienced expedition staff.
  • All Miscellaneous Service Taxes and Port Charges Throughout the Program
  • All shore excursions and activities throughout the voyage by Zodiac.
  • Free use of rubber boots and snowshoes.
  • All meals throughout the voyage aboard the ship including snacks, coffee and tea.
  • Comprehensive pre-departure material.
  • AECO Fees and Governmental Taxes
  • Transfers and baggage handling between the airport, hotels and ship only for those passengers on the group flights to and from Longyearbyen
Excluded
  • Gratuities
  • Travel Insurance
  • Personal Expenses
  • Flight costs (please request a quote)
  • Additional excursions during free time
  • Fuel and transportation surcharges (when applicable)
  • Passport and Applicable Visa Expenses
  • Government arrival and departure taxes
  • Pre- and Post Land Arrangements
  • Fuel Surcharge - to be invoiced separately
  • Meals ashore
  • Baggage, cancellation and personal insurance (which is strongly recommended).
  • Excess baggage charges and all items of a personal nature such as laundry, bar, beverage charges and telecommunication charges.
  • Medical travel insurance, including emergency medical attention and evacuation coverage with a minimum of $100,000 of evacuation coverage is required.
  • Parkas are not provided on your cruise. Please bring your own windproof, waterproof, insulated parka with you. You will want to make sure it is roomy enough to fit warm layers underneath. Click here for information about parka rental.

Map

When to Go

Jan
Feb
Mar
Apr
May
Jun
Jul
Aug
Sep
Oct
Nov
Dec
Good to ideal period to travel, and many people choose to visit at this time.

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This was my first experience with Adventure Life - and I couldn't have been more pleased with the trip. The guides and local staff in both Buenos Aires and Uruguay were terrific - extremely helpful and accommodating. I really enjoyed meeting the friendly staff in Buenos Aires in person (I left my bags with them for the afternoon).
Karen Snider

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