The Svalbard archipelago is home to an abundance of Arctic wildlife and beautiful scenery. You will visit stunning Spitsbergen, the largest island in the region, as well as various islands of the archipelago where you may spot the majestic polar bear.  Joining the onboard expert team for this special voyage are Monty Halls and Sue Flood, making for a truly unique voyage.  
Monty Halls is a former Royal Marines officer who worked for Nelson Mandela on the peace process in South Africa. He is a writer, explorer, television presenter, public speaker and President of the Galapagos Conservation Trust.   Sue Flood is a professional wildlife and travel photographer. She was an Associate Producer on the award-winning BBC series “The Blue Planet” and worked on Planet Earth. She is great fun, and will be pleased to share her photographic skills and help you capture the most amazing photos during your voyage.

Highlights

- Spot the majestic polar bear
- Join Month Halls and Sue Flood on a voyage of a lifetime
- Discover a wide range of birdlife in the world-renowned bird cliffs
- Opportunities to kayak, hike & navigate through icy Arctic waters by Zodiac
- Fascinating wildlife on land & sea
- Majestic landscapes and breath-taking views

Quick Itinerary

Day 1: Longyearbyen
Day 2: Bourbonhamna
Day 3: Storfjorden
Day 4: Hornsund
Day 5-6: Lillie hock Glacier, Krossfjorden & Smeerenburgfjorden
Day 7-8: Phippsoya
Day 9: Hinlopen Strait
Day 10: Liefdefjorden and Monaco Glacier
Day 11: Alkehornet
Day 12: Longyearbyen

If you would like help to find your perfect expedition cruise, simply complete the enquiry form to get in touch.

Alternatively, call our Polar Specialists on 0203 196 1000 

Day 1: Longyearbyen
You will embark on the expedition ship in Longyearbyen and sail through Adventfjorden and into the majestic Isfjorden. You will head south and travel along the coastline of Spitsbergen, enjoying the near 24 hours of daylight for maximum wildlife encounters.

Day 2: Bourbonhamna
You arrive at Bourbonhamna, a well-known place for spotting beluga whales. Aboard Zodiacs, you may head to Ingebrigstenbukta on your thrilling first shore excursion. On the land, you keep watch for reindeer, and discover ancient artefacts and relics from the historical whaling and hunting period.

Day 3: Storfjorden
You will head to the most southerly point of Spitsbergen and into the Storfjorden.  Dolerittneset, near Kapp Lee, is fascinating.  Despite being so far north, the region is covered in rich vegetation - a stark contrast to the numerous reindeer antlers and ancient whalebones lining the shores. Over extensive time, the forces of nature have sculpted them into unique forms, providing interesting photographic subjects.

Day 4: Hornsund
The ship will sail back to the west coast into Hornsund. Majestic glaciers can be observed along the way. If the conditions are favourable, the expedition will take a closer a look and onboard guides will explain the formation of this fantastic landscape.

Day 5-6: Lillie hock Glacier, Krossfjorden & Smeerenburgfjorden
The next destination will bring you to Krossfjorden, a 30 km long fjord where numerous bird colonies can be found. The team will anchor the ship and will use the zodiacs to navigate along the bird cliffs close to the 14th of July Glacier. You may visit Lilliehook glacier, which is an astounding 7 kilometres long and 80 metres high. Regions surrounding glaciers always provide an opportunity to spot marine wildlife, and the team keep watch for bearded and ring seals.
Later in the day, the team aim to guide you around Smeerenburg (or “blubber town”). The fascinating region is named after the 17th century Dutch whaling settlement, where the large remains of the blubber ovens can still be seen today. The scenery is both majestic and a poignant reminder of the past.

Day 7-8: Phippsoya
The Captain and Expedition Leader aim to take you even further north – crossing 80° north parallel. The ship will slow down as you approach the pack ice, and wildlife are likely to be encountered. Indeed, we may observe bearded seals, ringed seals, walruses and polar bears. Utilising the ship’s near silent approach, the Captain will bring you close to the wildlife, without every disturbing it. Phippsoya is 540 nautical miles from the North Pole, and being so close to the permanent pack ice, it provides the perfect spot for polar bear viewing.

Day 9: Hinlopen Strait
You will turn south and go through the Hinlopen strait separating the 2 mains islands: Spitsbergen and Nordaustlandet. Alkefjellet features world-renowned bird cliffs facing towards Hinlopen Strait and is home to a large amount of birdlife, including Brunnich’s guillemots, kittiwakes or black guillemots.  The scenery is truly breath-taking, and the experience thrilling as Zodiacs traverse through the currents funnelling through the Strait. 
The team may also guide you around the Murchison Fjord.  Home to picturesque hiking routes, you will enjoy wonderful panoramas and oportunities to encounter Arctic wildlife. The surrounding channels and islands will also delight kayakers.

Day 10: Liefdefjorden and Monaco Glacier
As you enter Liefdefjorden, you will head to the incredible Monaco Glacier. This dramatic glacier is 7 kilometres wide and is a fabulous location for Zodiac exploration and is the perfect place to admire black-legged kittiwakes and a variety of marine wildlife.   The surrounding tundra provides a dramatic setting for hiking.

Day 11: Alkehornet
As this incredible adventure gradually reaches its finale, the overwhelming beauty of Mother Nature in Svalbard continues to surprise and delight.  Today you will explore Alkehornet. Located at the mouth of the Isfjord, the site offers stunning views and beautiful scenery. Upon entry, you will hear thousands of kittiwakes and guillemots all singing at the same time, creating a magical ambience. You will also have the possibility to land and walk in the tundra and observe Arctic fox and reindeer.

Day 12: Longyearbyen
You will head back to Arctic civilisation, arriving into Longyearbyen in the morning.  With a fond farewell from the expedition team and fellow passengers, you disembark after breakfast. A transfer to the airport for your onward flight to Tromso or Oslo will be provided.  Alternatively, we can arrange for you to be transferred into the town if you would like to enjoy a few days to explore Longyearbyen at your own leisure.

Vavilov

Rating
5
Standard
Simple
Capacity
92

A virtually identical sister ship to the Akademik Ioffe, this is a purpose-built vessel designed to have maximum stability in adverse conditions, quiet engines and superior speed. This combination of characteristics results in excellent manoeuvrability in the polar regions, allowing further exploration and close up views of the landscape.

Vavilov from 8th June 2019 to 19th June 2019

Vavilov from 7th July 2019 to 18th July 2019



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About Us
  • We can compare a huge selection of expedition ships, cruises and operators to find your perfect cruise.

  • Our prices are amongst the best in the business, with full package protection as standard.

  • We are the expedition cruise specialists and know the destinations, ships and operators inside out

  • As supporters of the Marine Conservation Society, booking with us helps support the protection of our oceans.

  • Our holidays are protected by ATOL and ABTOT, for your complete peace of mind.

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Why book with Polar Routes?

CHOICE
  • We can compare a huge selection of expedition ships, cruises and operators.
  • From former Russian research vessels to larger and luxurious ships - there is an expedition cruise to suit you. 
  • Our Travel Specialists will help you choose the perfect expedition cruise for your requirements.
SPECIALISTS
  • We are the expedition cruise specialists and know all the polar destinations inside out.
  • Our expert team of Travel Specialists have extensive knowledge of all the expedition ships & operators.
  • All of our Travel Specialists have first-hand experience of expedition cruising to the polar regions.
VALUE
  • Our prices are the amongst the best in the business, with full package protection as standard.
  • Our holidays are protected by ATOL and ABTOT, for your complete peace of mind.
  • As supporters of the Marine Conservation Society, booking with us helps support the protection of our oceans.