Crossing the Arctic Circle to Jan Mayen & Spitsbergen – From the Highlands to the High Arctic

from $5,995

DATES (2019): June 3-14

DURATION: 12 Days     

EMBARKATION: Edinburgh Scotland

DISEMBARKATION: Longyearbyen (Spitsbergen)

SHIP: M/V Sea Spirit

 

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All about the Crossing the Arctic Circle to Jan Mayen & Spitsbergen – From the Highlands to the High Arctic.

Departing from beautiful, historic Edinburgh, Scotland this true expedition cruise will visit the Scottish Orkney and Shetland Islands, Danish Faroe Islands and Norwegian Jan Mayen and Spitsbergen. Visit places only accessible by small expedition ship with a team of expedition leaders, naturalists, guest speakers and hosts. Spend four days exploring Svalbard, searching for wildlife such as the majestic polar bear. From Longyearbyen, continue to explore Norway.

Tórshavn, the Capital of the Faroe Islands

“Far out in the ocean that gleams and glitters like quicksilver may be found a small leaden-colored land. In proportion to the immense ocean the size of the tiny mountainous land is like a grain of sand to a ballroom floor. But viewed through a magnifying glass this grain of sand is an entire world, with mountains and valleys, inlets and fjords, and houses with tiny human beings. At one place there is even a complete little old town, with jetties and piers, warehouses, streets, crooked lanes and steep alleyways, gardens and market-places and cemeteries. There is also an old church situated high above the town; from its steeple there is a view out over the roofs of the houses and beyond—far out over the almighty ocean.”
(William Heinesen, “The Lost Musicians”, 1950.)

EXPEDITION LEADER

DR. HUW LEWIS-JONES

Huw is a historian of exploration, culture, photography and the environment, with a PhD from the University of Cambridge. He is the author of award-winning books but is happiest when out in wild nature. Huw was Curator at the Scott Polar Research Institute and the National Maritime Museum in London. His books include In Search of the South Pole, The Crossing of Antarctica, Ocean Portraits, The Conquest of Everest, winner of the History Award at the Banff Mountain Festival, Across the Arctic Ocean, and Explorers’ Sketchbooks, an art history of discovery and adventure. His books now have been published in 14 languages.

As an experienced polar guide, over the last decade Huw has wandered on both sides of Antarctica and in the Arctic, from the Ross Sea and the Southern Ocean, to Siberia, Greenland and the North Pole. His research interests are equally wide-ranging, from Admiral Nelson and Captain Cook, through whaling and Heroic Age expeditions, to pioneering photography and even Inuit Art. Back in Britain, Huw regularly appears on television and radio as a historian and cultural commentator, in the BBC documentaries Wilderness Explored, Of Ice and Men, Antarctica’s Forgotten Hero, Battle for the Himalayas, and most recently the PBS Nova special Franklin’s Lost Ships.

SPECIAL GUESTS

RICK SAMMON

Award-winning photographer

Rick started his professional photography career as an underwater photographer. He easily transitioned into travel, landscape, wildlife, cultural and nature photography. Rick’s images, from his travels to more than 100 countries, have been published in numerous newspapers and magazines, and have been featured in his 36 books. Rick will provide a photo workshop and be available for tips and advice – all with the objective of helping you get the most out of your photography. His wife Susan will also offer instructions on better smart phone photography.

In recognition of his talent and influence, Rick has been named a Canon Explorer of Light. Rick is also a Westcott Top Pro Elite, recognized for his skill in portraiture and lighting. He was also named by Squarespace as one of the world’s best photographers.

 

DOWNLOAD PDF BROCHURE

The tour package inclusions and exclusions at a glance
What is included in this tour?Items that are included in the cost of tour price.
  • Group transfer to the ship on day of embarkation;
  • Shipboard accommodation;
  • All meals on board throughout the voyage;
  • Tea and coffee station 24 hours daily;
  • All scheduled landings/excursions (subject to weather and ice conditions);
  • Leadership throughout the voyage by our experienced Expedition Leader & Expedition Team;
  • Branded Poseidon Expeditions parka;
  • Rubber boots for shore landings for the time of the cruise;
  • Welcome and Farewell cocktails;
  • All port fees;
  • Group transfer to airport or central location upon disembarkation;
  • Pre-departure materials;
  • Digital Voyage Log.
Whats not included in this tour.Items that are not included in the cost of tour price.
  • Airfare;
  • Visa and passport fees (if applicable);
  • Luggage and trip cancellation insurance;
  • Soft drinks and alcoholic beverages other than those for special events and celebrations;
  • Personal expenses such as laundry and telecommunication charges;
  • Emergency Evacuation Insurance to a minimum benefit of USD 150,000;
  • Staff gratuities.
  1. Day 1 Embarkation in Leith (Edinburgh), United Kingdom

    Welcome to Edinburgh, the capital of Scotland and starting point of our expedition. The famous Castle rising above the city gives immediate evidence of Edinburgh’s rich history. While the Town area boasts medieval architecture, the New Town accommodates newer 18th century buildings. Each corner of Edinburgh’s old streets opens beautiful unexpected vistas of green hills or a blue flash of distant sea. In the afternoon, we welcome you aboard the luxury expedition ship M/V Sea Spirit. Explore the ship and get comfortable in your home away from home for the extraordinary adventure to come.

  2. Day 2 Kirkwall, Orkney Islands

    Kirkwall is a small, quiet town, with a gentle pace of life. The town is the capital of the remote and amazing Orkney archipelago. Kirkwall is first mentioned in Orkneyinga saga in 1046. Such a long history has left a rich heritage that we explore today. The most famous are the sandstone St Magnus Cathedral, considered the finest medieval building in the north of Scotland, the Bishop’s Palace and the Earl’s Palace.Included tour “Ancient treasures of Orkney with St Magnus Cathedral.” Depart Kirkwall and head into the west of Mainland, Orkney’s largest island. This tour passes through the gentle rolling landscape of Orkney and into the Neolithic Heartland of Orkney; an area designated as a World Heritage Site due to its wealth of pre-historic archaeology. Passing the Standing Stones of Stenness, we will stop at the Ring of Brodgar; a huge ceremonial circle of stones dating back almost 5000 years. We then continue on to the 5000-year-old village of Skara Brae, beautifully interpreted in the visitor centre. See the remarkable dwellings revealed from beneath the sand dunes by storms only 150 years ago.Hear some of the stories from your guide today en route back to Kirkwall. Once back in the island capital we will take a tour of St Magnus Cathedral, built by the Vikings during their 500 year reign over the islands.

  3. Day 3 Fair Isle, Shetland Islands

    Fair Isle is a real paradise for birdwatchers. Huge number of birds inhabits the lush grasslands and spectacular cliffs. Over 345 species have been recorded here – more than anywhere else in Britain. During our walk across the island, we hope to see northern fulmars, kittiwakes, northern gannets, puffins, and great and arctic skuas.

  4. Day 4 Torshavn, Faroe Islands, Denmark

    National Geographic Traveler had designated Faroe Islands as “authentic, unspoiled and likely to remain so”. It seems that the Nature spares no colours in “painting” the islands. Deep-green hills, bright blue sea, colourful houses and boats, orange-red puffins’ beaks make the sceneries unforgettable. We stop at the capital of the Faroes —Torshavn. Included tour “Kirkjubøur.” During the Middle Ages, Kirkjubøur was the ecclesiastical and cultural centre of the Faroes. Here was the Bishop’s residence until the Reformation, when the Faroese diocese was abolished. The imposing ruin of Saint Magnus Cathedral still dominates the site. Construction of the Cathedral is thought to have begun in the late-thirteenth century, as the style of the building is from the best period of Gothic architecture, common to West Norwegian church building of that time. Tradition has it that it was never finished; yet recent research has revealed that it was probably roofed at one time. The Roykstovan, standing on the wide, stone foundation of a portion of the Bishop’s palace, has been the home of the farmers in Kirkjubøur for centuries and occupied by the same Faroese family for 17 generations. Covered with a traditional turf roof, it is a large building made of logs, which are said to have come drifting all the way from Norway some 700 years ago. The farmhouse interior reflects the lifestyle of a large Faroese farm. On our way to and from Kirkjubøur, we have a magnificent view to the west of the islands of Koltur, Hestur, Sandoy, and Vágar.

  5. Day 5 At Sea

    Presentations and workshops by our expert staff, as well as our range of onboard recreation facilities, ensure that this day at sea is not idly spent. Seabird viewing and whale sightings can be enjoyed from panoramic open decks as well as exterior stateroom windows and balconies.

  6. Day 6 Jan Mayen

    Jan Mayen hosts the landscapes of breathtaking beauty and northernmost subaerial active volcano on the planet – the Beerenberg. The island is wild and uninhabited not including members of Norwegian weather station. The signboard at the entrance door says (translated from the Norwegian): “Theory is when you understand everything but nothing works. Practice is when everything works but nobody understands why. On this station, we combine theory and practice in a way that nothing works and nobody understands why”. Northern fulmars, Kittiwakes, and Brünich’s guillemots breeding on steep cliffs and slopes represent the birdlife of Jan Mayen

  7. Day 7 At Sea

    The lectures of our invited speakers prepare us for meeting with the unique Arctic wildlife and awesome landscapes of Spitsbergen.

  8. Days 8-11 Exploring Spitsbergen

    This is a real expedition in a true High Arctic wilderness. As such, our route and exploration opportunities here are heavily dependent on the weather and sea ice conditions we encounter. Our experienced captain and expedition leader decide the itinerary and continually adjust plans as conditions and opportunities warrant. You can be sure that the best possible advantage will be taken of the circumstances presented to us by Nature in this wild and remote corner of the Arctic.Polar bears and other quintessential Arctic wildlife can be spotted anytime, anywhere in and around Svalbard. We exploit every opportunity to experience excellent wildlife viewing, to discover incredible scenery, and to walk in the footsteps of the historic polar expeditions that came before us.We anticipate exploring the spectacular fjords, coasts, and islands in the western part of Svalbard. This area contains the archipelago’s most impressive scenery and some of the Arctic’s best wildlife viewing opportunities. Deep fjords and narrow channels are flanked by jagged snowy mountain peaks. Immense tidewater glaciers calve icebergs into turquoise waters. Fields of flowering tundra are home to grazing reindeer and playful Arctic fox. Bountiful inshore and offshore waters are home to walrus and a wide variety of whales. The whole area is alive with migratory birds, including numerous rare species, taking advantage of summer’s fecundity in 24-hour daylight.  To complete the Arctic experience we also explore places rich with history. Our area of exploration contains the historical remnants of whaling camps, coal mining operations, trappers’ cabins, staging areas for historic attempts to discover the North Pole, and even an abandoned polar research station.The days are filled with memorable excursions, sumptuous meals, presentations by our experts, and enough stunning scenery and wildlife to fill your camera and overwhelm your emotions.

  9. Day 12 Disembarkation in Longyearbyen, Spitsbergen

    After breakfast we say farewell in the town of Longyearbyen, the administrative capital of the Norwegian territory of Svalbard. We provide a transfer to the airport or to the town center if you wish to spend more time here. In this case, be sure to see the excellent Svalbard Museum and take advantage of quality shopping and dining opportunities in this fascinating Arctic settlement.

Sea Spirit

Introducing the Sea Spirit, formerly the Spirit of Oceanus – Sailing in grand style with all the amenities of a luxury hotel.
Providing spacious suites for accommodation of 116 passengers the Sea Spirit at the same time features maneuverability and friendly atmosphere of small ships. The vessel has an ice-strengthened hull, a fleet of Zodiacs, and a set of retractable fin stabilizers for smoother sailing.

Explore the Polar Regions in style and comfort aboard the all-suite Sea Spirit. Providing spacious suites and social areas for 116 guests the Sea Spirit at the same time features maneuverability and friendly atmosphere of small ships.

Public areas include: Reception, Restaurant, Bar, Outdoor Bistro, Club Lounge, Library, Presentation Lounge, Infirmary, Gym, Bridge.

We have open Bridge policy. Talk to the Captain and officers. Watch landscapes from this special angle of view. Fix your location at a map of your expedition.

Fast Facts

  • Dare Launched/Rebuilt: 1992/2006
  • Length: 297 ft
  • Beam: 50 ft
  • Draft: 13.5 ft
  • Tonnage: 4954 t
  • Cruise Speed: 12 knots
  • Total Staff: 72
  • Passenger Capacity: 116
  • Registry: Bahamas

Onboard Amenities

Restaurant
The Restaurant on board the Sea Spirit offers open-seating dining, which means there are no assigned tables. Contemporary, international cuisine is created by our talented chefs.

Bar
After a day of explorations passengers may relax at a Bar staffed by a professional bartender. With a wide variety of alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks and engaging conversation, the bar on board this small luxury ship welcomes guests to mix and mingle.

Presentation Lounge
The Presentation Lounge with state-of-the-art equipment is where all lectures, briefings and social gatherings take place. Attend informative lectures, recaps and briefings, and enjoy views outside.

Club Lounge
Club Lounge provides great opportunities for socializing and observing fantastic landscapes passing by. This comfortable seating area also offers a 24-hour self-service coffee and tea bar.

Library
The Library is a quiet cozy place for reading and relaxation. It has an extensive selection of polar books and DVDs, magazines, reference materials and newspapers.

Gym
Well-equipped Gym allows travelers not to break away from regular sports for the time of a trip. The Gym is open daily and offers stationary bikes, several treadmills, and some multi-functional training machines.

Reception
Should you have a question or require any service be sure to visit the Reception area. Our experts can provide invaluable information to help you get the most out of your cruise.

DECK PLANS and CABINS

All accommodations are air-conditioned and fitted with TV, telephone, hairdryers, mini-fridge, central music, and public address system and safe boxes. The fully equipped bathrooms are finished with marble.

CABINS

OWNER’S SUITE: Ocean view suite boasting sweeping views, interior entrance, a private terrace, a complimentary minibar (restocked daily), one queen bed and one sofa bed, sitting area, in-room safe, (Deck 6)

PREMIUM SUITE: Ocean view stateroom with direct access to their private balcony. Added amenities include: two twin or one queen bed, armoire, minibar, evening canapés, complimentary laundry service, and the services of a dedicated butler, fresh fruit upon arrival (Deck 6)

DELUXE SUITE: Ocean view stateroom with direct access to their private balcony, two twin or one queen bed (Deck 5)

SUPERIOR SUITE:Ocean view stateroom  with large pictures window(s), sweeping views, two twin or one queen bed (Deck 4)

CLASSIC SUITE: Ocean view stateroom with large pictures window(s), two twin or one queen bed (Deck 3)

MAIN DECK SUITE: Large ocean view stateroom with portholes, two twin or one queen bed (Deck 2)

TRIPLE CLASSIC SUITE: Ocean view stateroom with large pictures window(s), Three twin beds, or one Queen and one twin. (Deck 3).