West Spitsbergen & Polar Ice Edge
DATE: (2019) June 13-22 (10 Days); June 21-30 (10 Days); June 29-July 10 (12 Days)
DURATION: 10 DAYS or 12 DAYS
EMBARK: LONGYEARBYEN, NORWAY
DISEMBARK: LONGYEARBYEN, NORWAY
SHIP: Sea Spirit
Not only a frozen wilderness, Spitsbergen is a place of precarious beauty and a stronghold of endangered Arctic wildlife.
This remarkable expedition departs from the far northern settlement of Longyearbyen on the Norwegian Arctic island of Spitsbergen in the famed Svalbard archipelago. We explore the island’s northwestern coast, home to dramatic mountain scenery, tidewater glaciers, and some of the Arctic’s best wildlife viewing opportunities.
On this voyage we also venture to the jumbled edge of the north-polar ice cap in search of polar bears stalking their prey. Here, at the dynamic boundary between implacable ice and bountiful sea, we have a rare opportunity to experience raw nature and incredible events hardly ever seen.
- 1 pre-voyage hotel night;
- 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
RATES DO NOT INCLUDE:
- 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.
Welcome to Longyearbyen, the Arctic adventure capital of the Norwegian territory of Svalbard and starting point of our expedition. After arriving via scheduled commercial flight, you are free to explore this small but fascinating settlement. Be sure to see the excellent Svalbard Museum and enjoy the shops, cafes and restaurants in the town center. Your hotel for the night has been arranged by us and is included in the price of the voyage.
Embark in Longyearbyen, Norway
In the afternoon we welcome you aboard the expedition ship M/V Sea Spirit; transfers from the hotel are included. Explore the ship and get comfortable in your home-away-from-home for the extraordinary adventure to come. The long days of summer sunlight illuminate our surroundings as we slip our moorings and sail into a true wilderness where wildlife abounds. The scenery as we sail through Isfjorden on our first evening is spectacular and there is already the possibility of marine mammal encounters.
Silver Cloud will then head north to cruise Vistenfjord and the Visten National Park. Much of the park’s bedrock is gneiss, which absorbs very little water, and the water flow in the streams and rivers may vary greatly –causing many cascades and waterfalls to exist. There are some trails at the outskirts of the national park, and depending on conditions, we will hike or take our Zodiacs to explore this enchanting area.
Exploration of West 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 northwestern 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. On ice floes and on fast ice several species of seals watch vigilantly for polar bears. 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.
And over it all presides the polar bear, monarch of the North. This wild corner of Svalbard is one of the best places in the world to observe polar bears hunting in their preferred habitat: the pack ice. We take the ship as close as safely possible to the jumbled and broken edge of the polar ice cap, where polar bears stalk the frozen sea in search of seals.
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.
Human habitation in this area can be found only at Ny Ålesund, a former mining town that is now home to an international community of Arctic researchers. This is one of the world’s most northerly settlements, complete with museum, gift shop, and post office.
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.
Disembarkation in Longyearbyen
After breakfast we say farewell in the town of Longyearbyen, where we started. We provide a transfer to the airport or to the town center if you wish to spend more time here. As you look back on your wonderful experience in Svalbard, you may already be looking forward to your next incredible adventure to the ice!
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.
- 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