A high Arctic archipelago situated beyond Norway’s fjord-fretted coast, a mere 600 miles from the North Pole, Svalbard is a place of deep fjords, snowcapped mountains, and massive sheets of ice glowing under the midnight sun. It’s a magnificent polar bear habitat that provides opportunities for thrilling up-close observations of polar bears and other Arctic wildlife. Embark on this 10-day voyage and experience Arctic nature in its purest form.
Day 1 : Oslo, Norway/SAS Radisson Blu Hotel Day 2 : Oslo/Longyearbyen/Embark Ship Days 3-8 : Exploring Svalbard Day 9 : Longyearbyen | Disembark | Oslo Day 10 : Oslo
View polar bears on the pack ice, their natural habitat, from the ship deck
Observe walruses, reindeer, arctic foxes, fur seals, and a glory of birds
Actively explore: hike, walk, Zodiac cruise, and kayak in stunning scenery
Enjoy superlative photos opportunities and on-board photo assistance
Arrive in Oslo, the capital city where each year the Nobel Peace Prize is awarded in the presence of the King of Norway. Check in to the SAS Radisson Blu Hotel. In the afternoon, your introduction to Oslo begins with a stroll among the famed Vigeland sculptures--hundreds of life-size human figures set in terraced Frogner Park. Next you will visit the Fram Museum, dedicated to Norwegian explorers Nansen and Amundsen. The evening is free.
Depart Oslo on a charter flight, and enjoy breathtaking vistas en route to Longyearbyen. On arrival, visit the Svalbard Museum to learn the story of Svalbard and its context in Norway and the Arctic, from 17th-century whaling to modern mining, research and tourism. Then tour the Gallery Svalbard to view the permanent art and cultural collections as well as studios of local artists. Embark National Geographic Explorer, your base for the next six days.
Your travel in the archipelago is truly exploratory by design, and your exact day-to-day movements will remain flexible, depending on local conditions.
Your main focus is the search for Svalbard’s amazing wildlife: polar bear, reindeer and walrus. Observe seals and arctic foxes and search for the very symbol of the Arctic—majestic polar bears. Cruising in Svalbard’s fjords, venture to the foot of stunning tidewater glaciers. You will take our Zodiacs and kayaks to cruise among beautiful icebergs, and experience the geology, wildlife and wildflowers that give color and vitality to the High Arctic. (B,L,D)
Disembark in Longyearbyen, meet up with a local guide and take a short bus ride to Camp Barentz in the nearby Advent Valley for a taste of Arctic culture. Here, you’ll discover a unique collection of buildings including an authentic gamme, a traditional round building with an open fire in the center, and a lavvo, the traditional tent of the Sami people. Enjoy refreshments and meet some of the friendly, sled dog huskies that reside at camp. Fly back to Oslo and overnight at the SAS Radisson Blue Airport Hotel.
Day 10 Oslo
After breakfast, proceed to the airport for your flight home or continue on to other adventures.
The trip might have been the absolute best of our lifetime (thus far). We particularly want to commend our guide Peter in the Guilin area-he was so incredibly attentive, energetic, enthusiastic-and absolutely dedicated to ensuring that our meals were 100% vegetarian.