• Photo by Jan Houter

  • The Noorderlicht under sail. Photo by Remy Marion

  • The Noorderlicht takes a turn.

  • A typical cabin aboard Noorderlicht. Photo by Jan Belgers

  • An amazing polar bear viewing opportunity aboard the Noorderlicht. Photo by Jan Belgers

  • A polar bear approaches the bow of the Noorderlicht. Photo by Jan Belgers

  • Coffee and tea service aboard the Noorderlicht. Photo by Jan Belgers

  • The Noorderlicht offers numerous cozy dining spaces. Photo by Jan Belgers

  • Another dining nook on the Noorderlicht. Photo by Jan Belgers

  • Nooks and benches for reading and relaxing on the Noorderlicht. Photo by Jan Belgers

  • Due to the Noorderlicht's small size, guests can help with sailing. Photo by Jan Belgers

  • Observing the Arctic landscape after a fresh snowfall. Photo by Jan Belgers

  • The Noorderlicht navigating icy Arctic waters. Photo by Jan Belgers


20 guests
Year Built: 1920
Renovated: 1991
Length: 153 feet
Beam: 22 feet
Draft: 11 feet
Cruising Speed: 7 knots

The 20-guest Noorderlicht is well suited for sailing the small islands of Spitsbergen and Lofoten and offers good open deck viewing areas, also when under sail. This is an Arctic ship for the avid sailor.

Noorderlicht Review

AdventureSmith Explorations’ Noorderlicht review includes a detailed description of the small ship including deck plans and a photo gallery. Please read our review below then contact our polar cruise experts to compare the Noorderlicht with other small Arctic ships.

The Noorderlicht was originally built in 1910 in Flensburg, Germany, as a three-masted schooner. For most of her existence she served as a light-vessel on the Baltic. In 1991 the present owners purchased the hull and re-rigged and refitted her thoroughly, under the rules of "Register Holland." The Noorderlicht now has a well-balanced two-masted schooner rig and is capable of sailing the seven seas. The qualified captains have a great experience of the oceans. Together with the rest of the crew, they will do everything possible to ensure that you have a wonderful and unforgettable journey.

The Noorderlicht has no ice class. She was anchored year-round near Flensburg, Germany. Due to heavy ice conditions in the winter time, the bow of the Noorderlicht was strengthened. The vessel is not an ice breaker but has a strengthened bow.

Dining & Service Aboard Noorderlicht

A dining area with a cozy atmosphere on board the vessel allows the passengers to have their meals. Three meals of international cuisine per day are served in the mess room and prepared by the ship cook. A bar and reading table are also on the ship. The crew of the Noorderlicht consists of three expert Dutch sailors, a cook and an expedition leader.

Activities Aboard Noorderlicht

Every day there will be excursions on land, weather and ice permitting. The landings take three to six hours per day over untracked areas. According to circumstances (the weather, the ice-situation or the passengers' wishes) the program can sometimes be adjusted. Ample time will be devoted to wildlife, vegetation, geography and history. 

Noorderlicht has a large open deck (with full walk-around possibilities), giving excellent opportunities to enjoy the scenery and wildlife. Due to its small size, the Noorderlicht often asks for all hands on deck, which is a fun and unforgettable experience. While sailing, the assistance of passengers is appreciated for handling the sails and taking the helm. This includes being on watch during nightly sailing.

Noorderlicht has a non-smoking policy. It is prohibited to smoke inside the ship. You can smoke on deck but do not throw your cigarette filter overboard! Do not smoke on the aft deck in the proximity of zodiacs, engines and fuel.

Cabins Aboard Noorderlicht

The Noorderlicht provides accommodation for 20 travelers in 10 comfortable twin cabins. All cabins have upper and lower berths, and a cupboard and wash basin with hot and cold water. There are four shared showers and five shared toilet facilities. Instead of portholes, the cabins have frosted glass in the ceiling, where the play of daylight shines into the cabins. The electrical supply aboard the ship is 220 volt 50hz. Electrical outlets are standard European with two thick round pins. U.S. passengers may need a 220v/110v converter.

Noorderlicht Deck Plan

Noorderlicht Deck Plan