With our sturdy Zodiacs we explore this winter wonderland, heading for some of Svalbard’s most magnificent fjords and we try to make landings wherever the ice allows us.
Day 1: Longyearbyen, Svalbard
We arrive in Longyearbyen and transfer to our hotel.
Day 2 - 8: Expedition
We start our adventure in Svalbard by exploring Longyearbyen. In the afternoon we embark our expedition ship M/S Quest and head out through Isfjorden. Perhaps we could make an evening landing before we continue either south or north – all depending on the weather and the current ice situation. Here are some examples of places we may visit:
At the entrance of Isfjorden is the characteristic cliff Alkhornet. We go ashore to enjoy the beautiful tundra and its birdlife with barnacle geese, Brünnich’s guillemots, glaucous gulls, snow buntings and tens of thousands of kittiwakes. Arctic foxes are sometimes seen in the rock crevices around the mountain and with some luck we might see these lovely little animals scurrying around, frantically looking for food.
Prins Karls Forland
This narrow strip of land is covered by a magnificent and snow-covered mountain chain. The island is also home to many seabirds and harbour seals
Kongsfjorden and Krossfjorden
The scientific village of Ny-Ålesund is situated in Kongsfjorden. It was from here that Amundsen and Nobile started their heroic expeditions to the North Pole. In the nearby Krossfjorden we revel in the beautifully sculptured front of the 14th of July Glacier to the raucous greeting of the large number of kittiwakes and Brünnich’s guillemots nesting on the nearby cliffs.
Raudfjorden is an area of immense natural beauty – dominated by beautiful glaciers. It is also a favourite spot for seals and the bird cliffs are bursting with activity.
Two of the most courageous attempts to reach the North Pole started on the island of Danskøya. Swedish explorer Andrée made an attempt with a hydrogen balloon and American journalist Wellman started with an airship. There are still interesting remnants from these expeditions left on this site.
At the beautiful Vårsolbukta in Bellsund little auks nest by the tens of thousands. We go ashore and walk across the tundra to take a closer look at these charming birds.
The majestic Hornsund consists of several magnificent fjords along the west coast of Spitsbergen, where enormous glaciers calve out shimmering blue ice. This is one of the favourite haunts for some of Svalbard’s polar bears and if lucky we can spot one of them on the fjord ice.
Day 9: Longyearbyen
In the morning we leave the ship in Longyearbyen and begin our journey home.
Please note: Our exact route will depend on ice, weather conditions and wildlife. The places mentioned are just examples of some of the many sites Svalbard has to offer. We always strive to maximise your experience. Please remember that flexibility is the key to a successful expedition!
For the active there is a chance to explore the areas we visit with snowshoes. This is an extra option that requires a good level of fitness. Please note: this activity is always dependent on weather, wind and other safety precautions.