North Spitsbergen – In Search of Polar Bear and Pack Ice

Polar Bear, Svalbard

8 Days/7 Nights

From $4,000 per person

(Dbl. Occupancy, Not Incl. Airfare)

Select June Departures

Overview

Intro Goes Here…

Lodging and Meals: This tour includes accommodations for 7 nights aboard the Plancius and 20 meals (7 breakfasts, 6 lunches, and 7 dinners).

Best Time to Go: May-September.

Destinations: The Arctic, Europe, and Norway.

Interests: Adventure, Culture & History, Expedition Cruising, Sea Kayaking, Whale Watching, and Wildlife Viewing.

Places Visited: Svalbard.

Day-by-Day Itinerary

Please Note: All itineraries are for guidance only. Programs may vary depending on ice, weather, and wildlife conditions. Landings are subject to site availabilities, permissions, and environmental concerns per AECO regulations. Official sailing plans and landing slots are scheduled with AECO prior to the start of the season, but the expedition leader determines the final plan. Flexibility is paramount for expedition cruises. The average cruising speed of our vessel is 10.5 knots.

Day 1: Largest town, biggest island.

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.

Meals: Dinner

Day 2: Route to Raudfjorden.

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.

Meals: Breakfast, lunch, and dinner

Day 3: The massive Monaco Glacier.

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.

Meals: Breakfast, lunch, and dinner

Day 4: Highlights of Hinlopen.

Today you sail into Hinlopen Strait, home to bearded seals, ringed seals, and polar bears. At the entrance there is even the possibility to spot blue whales. After cruising among the ice floes of Lomfjordshalvøya in the Zodiacs, you can view the bird cliffs of Alkefjellet with their thousands of Brünnich’s guillemots. On the east side of Hinlopen Strait, you may attempt a landing on Nordaustlandet. Here reindeer, pink-footed geese, and walruses are likely sights. You can take an alternate route if ice prevents entry into Hinlopen.

Meals: Breakfast, lunch, and dinner

Day 5: Stop at the Seven Islands.

The northernmost point of your voyage may be north of Nordaustlandet, in the Seven Islands. Here you reach 80° north, just 870 km (540 miles) from the geographic North Pole. Polar bears inhabit this region, so the ship may park for several hours among the pack ice before wheeling around west again.

Meals: Breakfast, lunch, and dinner

Day 6: Sailing the continental shelf.

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.

Meals: Breakfast, lunch, and dinner

Day 7: Reindeer, foxes, and so many seabirds.

Walruses sometimes haul out in Forlandsundet, your next stop. Alternatively, 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 at night.

Meals: Breakfast, lunch, and dinner

Day 8: There and back again.

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.

Meals: Breakfast

Itinerary Map

Itinerary Map - North Spitsbergen - In Search of Polar Bear and Pack Ice

Prices & Dates

Price per Person

Departure Dates Quad
Porthole
Triple
Porthole
Twin
Porthole
Twin
Window
Twin
Deluxe
Superior
June 1, 8, 22, and 29, 2023 $4,000 $5,600 $5,600 $6,050 $6,400 $7,300

 
** The prices shown above are in U.S. Dollars. See the cost of this tour in your currency at xe.com.

Notes:

  1. The above prices are valid until June 29, 2023.
  2. The single supplement is 1.7 times the Twin/Superior price.
  3. Singles willing to share a cabin pay the Twin/Triple, or Quadruple price.
  4. Upon request, children under 16 with parents may receive a 40% discount in Grand Suite, Superior, Triple (sharing with 2 parents/adults) and Quadruple Cabins (sharing with 3 parents/adults).

What's Included

Price Includes

  • South American Vacations’ expert pre-departure planning services and documentation.
  • Pre-scheduled group transfers and baggage handling between the airport and ship only for those passengers on the group flights to and from Longyearbyen.
  • Accommodation on board the M/V Plancius.
  • All meals scheduled on board, 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.
  • All miscellaneous service taxes and port charges throughout the program.
  • AECO fees and governmental taxes.
  • Free use of rubber boots and snowshoes.

Price Does Not Include

  • International airfare.
  • Domestic airfare.
  • Hotel nights before/after the cruise.
  • Meals not indicated on the itinerary.
  • Passport/visa expenses.
  • Government arrival and departure taxes.
  • Gratuities to ship crew and guides (Suggested $00/per/day for the naturalist guides and crew).
  • Bar, telecommunication charges, gifts, and personal items.
  • Travel insurance.

We will be happy to quote the cost of airfare, land services, and travel insurance and to make these arrangements for you.

Accommodations

Arctic

Additional Details

Group/Private: All services included in this tour are operated on a group basis.

Elevations: N/a.

Passport/Visa: U.S., Australian, and Canadian citizens require a valid passport (with at least six months of validity from your departure date) and return ticket for stays of up to 90 days. EU nationals do not need to show a national ID card or passport, but it is still highly recommended to take them.

Travel Insurance: In order to protect your travel investment from unforeseen circumstances that may arise before or during your trip, we strongly recommend that you purchase travel insurance. We offer Allianz Global Assistance’s Classic Comprehensive and other plans. The Benefits and Coverage Limits are summarized on our Travel Insurance page. Call your travel counselor if you have any questions or to purchase a plan.

To Book This Trip: Call or email us to confirm the availability of the ship for your desired dates of travel. Once we have confirmed availability, you will need to pay a non-refundable deposit of $000 per person. The balance of the trip cost is due 00 days prior to departure.

Have Questions? Call 1-888-268-9753 to Speak to An Expert.