Spitsbergen, the largest island of the Svalbard archipelago, lies entirely within the Arctic Circle. It is rugged, wild, unspoiled and utterly unforgettable. When it comes to viewing Arctic wildlife, Spitsbergen is known as one of the most prolific destinations and this Spitsbergen Circumnavigation small ship cruise covers its entire coastline.
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Offering the world’s best opportunity to view polar bears, you’ll be able to see the world’s largest carnivores in their natural habitat. Walrus populations love Spitsbergen as well, feeding in the food-rich icy waters around the island. Whales and seabirds will entertain you during the sailing portions of the expedition, while you may catch a sighting of reindeer or Arctic fox when taking Zodiac excursions to land.
Day 1 - Embarkation Day - Longyearbyen
Your Spitsbergen arctic cruise begins when you board your ship in Longyearbyen, the island's largest settlement. Enjoy your first view of the island's rugged, glacier-topped mountains, rising majestically from icy Arctic waters.Accommodations: Sea SpiritIncluded Meals:
Days 2-12 - Circumnavigating Spitsbergen
Expect a new adventure every day, as you journey around the island of Spitsbergen and explore smaller, outlying islands. The variety of incredible wildlife and geological formations found here is astounding! Every expedition will be unique, but a few of our favorite landing sites include the 14th of July Glacier, Ny London, Phippsoya, Alkefjellet and Sundneset.
The names may seem strange to you, but they each have their own unique appeal. For birders, the 14th of July Glacier is home to Purple Sandpipers, Common Eiders, Barnacle Geese and Arctic Terns; while Alkefjellet is home to nesting Brunich Guillemots and Thick-billed Murres.
If you want to prove that Reindeer are real, then have your camera ready for visits to sites like Ny London, Sundneset and Alkhornet. As for the largest land carnivore in the world – searching for Polar Bears is a constant activity, with Phippsoya and Isbukta being two of their preferred places for hunting – meaning great potential for you to capture them in action.
The walrus sanctuary off Moffen Island is another place we often visit, as it can offer you some great opportunities for photographing walrus from the sea.
A big part of appreciating Spitsbergen comes from understanding the culture, not just how people live today, but how this land was first explored. Whaling was a key industry here and you will see blubber ovens and other whaling evidence at landing sites such as Smeerenburg. Add in the potential for spotting Beluga Whales and colorful tundra meadows displays complemented by immense glaciers, and you start to understand just how much there is to see in Spitsbergen.Accommodations: Sea SpiritIncluded Meals:
breakfast, lunch and dinner
Day 13 - Disembarkation in Longyearbyen
Your adventure ends as it began, in the frontier-style settlement of Longyearbyen. From here, transfer the airport for your flight home.Accommodations:
Read this itinerary as a guide only. As this is an expedition to a remote part of the world, our exact route and program varies according to ice, weather conditions, wildlife, availability of anchorages, political conditions and other factors beyond our control. Flexibility is the key to the success of this expedition. Visits to research stations depend on final permission.
Shipboard accommodation; All meals aboard throughout your voyage; All shore landings per the daily program; A daily program of lectures by noted naturalists; All Zodiac transfers and cruising per the daily program; Photographic Journal on DVD; A pair of waterproof expedition boots on loan for shore landings; An official Quark Expeditions parka to keep; A selection of alcoholic and non alcoholic beverages; Hair dryer and bathrobe in every cabin; Arrival/departure transfer; Emergency Evacuation Insurance
International airfare; Passport and any applicable visa expenses; Government arrival and departure taxes; Any meals ashore with the exception of breakfast at the host hotel; Baggage, cancellation, interruption, and medical travel insurance; Excess baggage charges; Laundry and other personal charges. Telecommunications charges; The voluntary gratuity at the end of the voyage for shipboard staff and crew.
Carrying a maximum of 120 passengers Sea Spirit is an outstanding vessel, approved for polar waters and is equipped with rubber inflatable boats - called RIBs - for shore transfers and cruising. You have a choice of one King Size bed or two twin beds, in the most spacious cabins of the fleet. All have facilities en suite and exterior views. Deluxe cabins, suites and the Owner's Suite have private balconies for viewing the extraordinary Antarctic icescape.
Families & Children:
At date of embarkation, a minimum age restriction of 8 years and minimum height and weight requirements (weight of 64lbs or 29kg and 48 in. or 1.2 m. tall) must be met. Children under 16 years of age must be supervised by a parent/guardian at all times, and may not participate in adventure options.
Arrival & Departure:
When considering flights for your Spitsbergen Circumnavigation cruise plan to arrive Longyearbyen, Norway (LYR) before 2pm. Embarkation is at 6pm. Plan flights to depart no earlier than 12 noon on the final day. Get a free flight quote.
Payment & Cancellation:
Reservations and Payment: A deposit of $1,000 or 20% of the total per person is required to confirm a reservation on an Arctic Adventure Ship voyage. The deposit may be paid by bank wire transfer, check, money order or major credit card. Final payment due 120 days prior to departure. We do NOT accept credit cards for Final Payment. Final payment can be made by check or bank wire transfer. All prices and payments are in US dollars and no other currencies can be accepted.
Cancellation Policy: A special cancellation policy applies to all Antarctic and Arctic trips, which is stricter than the AdventureSmith Explorations policy.All requests for cancellation must be received in writing. Cancellations received 180 days or more prior to departure, are refunded less an administrative fee of $1000 per person. If cancellation is received between 179 days and 120 days, the deposit is forfeited. If cancellation occurs less than 120 days prior to departure, all payments are forfeited. If full payment has not yet been received, the full penalty will still apply and any unpaid balance is due immediately.
Terms & Conditions:
This trip is subject to AdventureSmith Explorations Terms and Conditions
. Please read this information carefully and call us if you have any questions. A packing list and extensive pre-departure and travel insurance information is sent upon confirmation.
We highly recommend our travelers protect their investment with travel insurance. Please note that you must purchase your travel insurance policy within 14 days of booking your trip for it to cover pre-existing medical conditions. Click the link below for a selection of policies from our partners at Travelex.
Camping is available on this trip for $225 per person, and kayaking for $595 per person. Contact AdventureSmith for details and to reserve these activities.
Spitsbergen Circumnavigation will be enjoyed by anyone who is in good health, has full mobility, and leads an active life. The expedition is ship-based and physically not very demanding. Although we spend as much time as possible ashore, you are welcome to remain aboard the ship if you like. To join any off-vessel excursions, passengers must be able to navigate the steep, 30-stair, gang-way, un-assisted both down and up. Daily excursions from the boat will be made in Zodiacs. Trip members will take excursions to specific areas for wildlife observation. Hiking time for most landings will be a couple of hours roundtrip with lots of time to stop to study, photograph and enjoy the flora and fauna. Some landings are dry but many are "wet", requiring cautious footing on slippery rocks. The boat staff will be on hand to assist. You are traveling in remote areas without access to sophisticated medical facilities, so you must not join this expedition if you have a life-threatening condition, or need daily medical treatment.
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