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Hiking in Spitsbergen

North Spitsbergen - Farthest North

Example 8 Day Cruise aboard MV Janssonius
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This 8-day scenic expedition cruise aboard the MV Janssonius takes you through North Spitsbergen. Trek around historic Longyearbyen, then join your expedition to the north of the island to take in the fantastically beautiful landscapes, the thousands of seabirds, and of course the star of the show, the polar bear.
Polar bears in the ArcticWhale sightingWalruses huddled together on the iceGlass-still waters around SpitsbergenVisit the colorful town of Longyearbyen in the far northSpitzbergen, Svalbard und Jan MayenArctic Polar Bear Hiking in Spitsbergen
Highlights
  • Search for the polar bear, King of the Arctic
  • Enjoy Zodiac excursions to get a closer look at the region
  • Watch for minke whales and the elusive Greenland whale
  • Navigate through pack ice and ice floes
Places Visited
Activity Level: Relaxed
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Full Itinerary

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Day 1: Longyearbyen, Norway | Embark

You touch down in Longyearbyen, the administrative center of Spitsbergen, the largest island of the Svalbard archipelago. Enjoy strolling around this former mining town, whose parish church and Svalbard Museum make for fascinating attractions. Though the countryside appears stark, more than a hundred species of plant have been recorded in it. In the early evening the ship sails out of Isfjorden, where you might spot the first minke whale of your voyage.

Day 2: Raudfjorden

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Sailing to Raudfjorden, on the north coast of Spitsbergen, you take in an expansive fjord spilling with glaciers – and maybe even visited by ringed and bearded seals. The cliffs and shoreline of this fjord also support thriving seabird colonies, rich vegetation, and the possibility of polar bears. In the evening you sail by the island of Moffen, where you can find a large herd of walruses.

Day 3: Monaco Glacier

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Depending on the weather, you could sail into Liefdefjorden and cruise within sight of the 5-kilometer-long (3.1 miles) face of the precipitous Monaco Glacier. The waters in front of this glacier are a favorite feeding spot for thousands of kittiwakes, and the base of the ice is a popular polar bear hunting ground. If ice conditions prevent sailing here early in the season, an alternate route along the west coast of Spitsbergen can be implemented.

Day 4: Scoresby Island

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
You next sail through Beverleysundet, formerly navigated by the Swedish-Russian Arc-of-Meridian Expedition in 1898. From here you push east along Scoresby Island into Rijpfjord, where the German Wehrmacht operated the weather station Haudegen (now off-limits) until September 1945. The aim in Zorgdragerfjord is to have one group walk the eastern shore while another walks the north side of Arkvatnet, through Havsuldalen to the entrance of Duvefjorden.

Day 5-6: Phippsøya

  • Ship
  • 2 Breakfasts, 2 Lunches, 2 Dinners
Reaching Phippsøya, in the Seven Islands north of Nordaustlandet, you’re now at 80° north and just 870 km (540 miles) from the geographic North Pole. Polar bears and walruses inhabit this region. In the afternoon you venture to your northernmost point, near the 82nd parallel. While retracing your route west, keep watch for polar bears and elusive Greenland (bowhead) whales. 

About 40 nautical miles west of Spitsbergen, you sail the edge of the continental shelf. Here fin whales forage during the summer in the upwelling zones (where cold, nutrient-rich water wells up from below the sea’s surface) that run along the Spitsbergen banks. At the mouth of Kongsfjorden, you have a good chance of sighting minke whales.

Day 7: Forlandsundet

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Walruses sometimes haul out in Forlandsundet, your next stop – though this late in the season, they may have already departed. Alternately, you might sail into St. Johns Fjord or 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. You arrive in Longyearbyen later that night.

Day 8: Longyearbyen | Disembark

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

Ship/Hotel

MV Janssonius

MV Janssonius
MV Janssonius
MV Janssonius

Dates & Prices

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Per person starting at
MV Janssonius Quadruple Porthole cabin
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Quadruple Porthole
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
MV Janssonius
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Triple Porthole
Triple cabins with bunk beds and private facilities. These cabins are spacious with a minimum of two portholes or windows per cabin.
MV Janssonius
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Twin Porthole
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.
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Twin Window
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
MV Janssonius
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Twin Deluxe
Superior cabins with lower birth twin beds, private toilet and shower and a separate day room. Spacious outside cabins with a minimum of two portholes or windows per cabin
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Superior
Suite with a double bed, private toilet and shower and a separate day room. Spacious outside cabins with a minimum of two windows per cabin.
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Junior Suite
Suite with a double bed, private toilet and shower and a separate day room. Spacious outside cabins with windows.
MV Janssonius
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Grand Suite with private balcony
Suite with a double bed, private toilet and shower and a separate day room. Spacious outside cabins with 4 windows and a private balcony.
Included
  • 7 Breakfasts, 6 Lunches, 7 Dinners
  • 7 Nights Accommodations
  • Accommodations as listed
  • Ground transportation as listed
  • Activities as listed
  • Meals as listed
  • Comprehensive Pre- and Post-voyage Information Materials
     
  • Program of lectures by noted naturalists and leadership by experienced expedition staff.
  • All Miscellaneous Service Taxes and Port Charges Throughout the Program
     
Excluded
  • Gratuities
  • Travel Insurance
  • Personal Expenses
  • Flight costs (please request a quote)
  • Additional excursions during free time
  • Passport and Applicable Visa Expenses
  • Government arrival and departure taxes
  • Excess baggage charges
  • Pre- and Post Land Arrangements
  • Fuel Surcharge - to be invoiced separately

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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).
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