ARCTIC

Around Spitsbergen

Polar Bear, Spitsbergen
from £4607 9 - 15 nights | Jun - Aug Exc. flights See price details
  • Departs:
  • Jun - Aug

Overview

The aim of this expedition is to deliver the complete Spitsbergen experience, circumnavigating the Svalbard archipelago’s largest island. With superb wildlife encounters on offer, this voyage also delivers unparalleled photographic opportunities with spectacular scenery throughout.

Highlights

  • Encounter polar bears and walrus in their natural habitat
  • Cruise past glaciers, ice-floes and towering sea cliffs in a Zodiac
  • Visit fascinating historic and scientific sites
  • Optional kayaking available on selected departures (additional cost)

This is the 'star' voyage in our Arctic portfolio, exploring the full coastline of the largest island of the Svalbard archipelago, Spitsbergen. Renowned for wildlife watching opportunities both on land and in the marine rich coastal waters, discover this last frontier of the inhabitable world on a fabulous circular voyage.

Please note that the chance of successful circumnavigation is higher later in the season, when the ice has melted and more channels are open. Early departures are better for those wanting to see the region's rich birdlife and to experience large ice-floes. All voyage itineraries are dependent on the sea-ice conditions at the time of travel!

We were so lucky with our sightings and we saw polar bears, reindeer, walrus, seals, arctic fox, whales by the score and a large variety of birds. The expedition team were wonderful.

Judy & David Charlton, Around Spitsbergen

Itinerary & Accommodation

Day 1: Embarkation, Longyearbyen
Board your ship in Longyearbyen, Spitsbergen’s largest settlement.
Days 2-12: Spitsbergen
Over the next few days your expedition team will take advantage of local ice and weather conditions to explore the highlights of Spitsbergen, as you attempt to circumnavigate the island.

Popular attractions include the following:
  • 14th of July Glacier - enjoy a Zodiac cruise along the face of this glacier and search for Arctic foxes, purple sandpipers, common eiders, barnacle geese, Arctic terns and more among the nearby cliffs.
  • Alkefjellet - on Spitsbergen’s east side, the sea cliffs here offer the spectacular sight of thick billed murres (brunich guillemots) nesting in their thousands.
  • Barentsoya - visit an old trapper’s hut and enjoy a brisk walk across the tundra in search of Spitsbergen reindeer and barnacle geese.
  • Bourbonhamna - the narrow sound near Bourbonhamna is a favoured route of majestic beluga whales.
  • Hinlopen Strait - here you may find bearded and ringed seals, polar bears and ivory gulls. Visit the bird cliffs of Alkefjellet, where spectacular basalt pillars rise hundreds of metres towards an overhanging ice cap.
  • Isbukta - translates as ‘ice bay’ and there should be plenty of fast ice here - sea ice that has frozen fast to the coast. This means a good chance of spotting polar bears on the hunt, as seals rest along the ice edge.
  • Krossfjorden - located along the west coast of Spitsbergen, this is a great place to keep a look out for bearded seals.
  • Liefdefjorden - walk on the tundra observing pink-footed geese as well as common and possibly king eiders. Once into the fjord, there is a spectacular opportunity to cruise along the 5 km face of the Monaco Glacier.
  • Ny Alesund - the world’s most northerly settlement is now a research centre as well as a breeding ground for barnacle geese, pink-footed geese and Arctic tern.
  • Phippsoya - an archipelago within an archipelago, Seven Islands comprises the northernmost portion of Svalbard. They lie about 10 degrees from the North Pole and polar bears and walrus are commonly sighted around the island of Phippsoya.
Day 13: Disembarkation, Longyearbyen
Your adventure ends as it began, in the frontier-style settlement of Longyearbyen.
Notes

Please note that all voyage itineraries are intended as a guideline only - embracing the unexpected is part of the legacy of expedition travel. Actual routes and landings will be dependent on weather, sea and ice conditions. A degree of flexibility is essential in the polar regions!

Itinerary Variations

  • The 10 day voyages on the M/V Ortelius and M/V Plancius, and the 11-day voyages on the M/S Expedition, Sea Endurance and the Polar Pioneer are shorter variations on the above.
  • The 16 day voyages aboard the sailing schooners S/V Noorderlicht and S/V Rembrandt van Rijn will follow a similar route to above, but are slower moving vessels.
  • The 02 June 2018 voyage aboard the Ocean (Sea) Adventurer is a photography special. The main focus will be to provide passengers with the best possible wildlife photographing opportunities rather than attempting to follow a particular itinerary. Therefore, while it is possible that the ship will circle the island, it is very likely that an alternative route will be taken to maximise wildlife sightings.

Contact us for full details on these itineraries.

Accommodation Options

Polar Pioneer

  • Grade:
  • Type: Expedition Ship

Our smallest ship, Polar Pioneer offers traditional expe…

M/S Expedition

  • Grade:
  • Type: Expedition Ship

This eye-catching ship is Danish-built and newly refurbi…

Ocean Nova

  • Grade:
  • Type: Expedition Ship

The Ocean Nova carries a small group of up to 83 passeng…

M/V Ortelius

  • Grade:
  • Type: Expedition Ship

Explore the wonders of the Polar regions aboard this 116…

M/V Plancius

  • Grade:
  • Type: Expedition Ship

The M/V “Plancius” accommodates 116 passengers to ex…

Sea Endurance

  • Grade:
  • Type: Expedition Ship

Originally built in Denmark in 1992, the Sea Endurance&n…

Sea Adventurer (known as Ocean Adventurer from 2017)

  • Grade:
  • Type: Expedition Ship

This attractive ice-strengthened vessel is a comfortable…

Excursions

Kayaking

Optional Adventure Activity on selected Arctic Cruises

2018 Prices and Dates

2018 Season

Prices are per person, based on a twin cabin - please contact us for details of quad, triple, single and superior cabins.

Departure Date ActivitiesDurationVesselPrices from
02 Jun 2018 +   13 days Ocean (Sea) Adventurer £7,158
22 Jun 2018   11 days Sea Endurance £6,789
28 Jun 2018 11 days MS Expedition £4,607*
30 Jun 2018 13 days Ocean (Sea) Adventurer £7,158
02 Jul 2018   11 days Sea Endurance £6,789
02 Jul 2018 13 days Ocean Nova £7,816
06 Jul 2018 D 10 days M/V Plancius £4,923
07 Jul 2018 11 days Polar Pioneer £5,102
12 Jul 2018   11 days Sea Endurance £6,789
14 Jul 2018   10 days M/V Ortelius £4,923
15 Jul 2018   11 days MS Expedition £4,607*
17 Jul 2018 11 days Polar Pioneer £5,102
27 Jul 2018 11 days Polar Pioneer £5,102
01 Aug 2018   10 days M/V Ortelius £4,923
01 Aug 2018   11 days Sea Endurance £6,789
01 Aug 2018   11 days MS Expedition £4,749*
11 Aug 2018   10 days M/V Plancius £4,923
11 Aug 2018   11 days MS Expedition £4,607*
20 Aug 2018**   10 days M/V Plancius £4,923

+ This departure is a photography special. The main focus will be to provide passengers with the best possible wildlife photographing opportunities rather than attempting to follow a particular itinerary. Therefore, while it is possible that the ship will circle the island, it is very likely that an alternative route will be taken to maximise wildlife sightings.

** This departure will attempt to include the island of Kvitoya, meaning a larger area will be covered, but less time may be spent in other regions.

*Special price – only available when booking voyage in conjunction with flights

Activity options:
≠ Kayaking
is available on this voyage: £535 on board the Ocean Nova and Ocean (Sea) Adventurer; £641 on board the Polar Pioneer; £429 on board the MS Expedition
D Diving is available on this voyage: £359 on board the M/V Plancius

Inclusions and Exclusions

Ocean Nova & Ocean (Sea) Adventurer

Includes: Transfer from Longyearbyen airport to your hotel if you arrive one day prior to embarkation • On embarkation day, transfer from your hotel or Longyearbyen airport to the ship • On disembarkation day, a group transfer from the ship to your hotel or to the Longyearbyen airport • Shipboard accommodation with daily housekeeping • All breakfasts, lunches and dinners on board throughout your voyage • Coffee, tea, cocoa available around the clock • Leadership throughout the voyage by an experienced Expedition Leader • All Zodiac transfers, cruising and shore landings as per the daily program • Formal and informal presentations by the Expedition Team and guest speakers as scheduled • Photographic journal, documenting the voyage • A pair of waterproof expedition boots on loan for shore landings • A Quark Expeditions parka – yours to keep • Hair dryer and bathrobe in every cabin • Comprehensive pre-departure materials, including a map and an informative Arctic Reader • All miscellaneous service taxes and port charges throughout the program • All luggage handling aboard ship • Emergency Evacuation Insurance for all passengers to a maximum benefit of $100,000 per person

Excludes: Return airfares from the UK • Passport and visa expenses (we will be pleased to advise you on any necessary documentation, however this is passengers' own responsibility) • Government arrival and departure taxes • Any additional pre or post voyage accommodation/meal/land arrangements (if required) • Waterproof trousers are not provided on this voyage; passengers must provide their own wet weather trousers for zodiac cruising and shore landings • Telecommunication charges, bar and laundry costs and other charges of a personal nature • Excess baggage charges • The voluntary gratuity at the end of the voyage for Hospitality Team members, ship’s crew and Expedition Team members (guidelines will be provided) • Travel insurance.

Polar Pioneer

Includes: Return airport transfers if arriving on day of embarkation and departing on day of disembarkation • Longyearbyen town tour • Shipboard accommodation with daily housekeeping • All breakfasts, lunches and dinners on board throughout your voyage • Leadership throughout the voyage by an experienced Expedition Leader, including shore landings and other activities • All shore landings per the daily program • All Zodiac transfers and cruising per the daily program • Formal and informal presentations by the Expedition Team and guest speakers as scheduled • All miscellaneous service taxes and port charges throughout the program • Expedition jacket, yours to keep • Loan of rubber boots during voyage

Excludes: Return airfares from the UK • Any additional pre or post voyage accommodation/land arrangements • Additional airport or airline security charges • Passport and visa expenses (we will be pleased to advise you on any necessary documentation, however this is passengers' own responsibility) • Government arrival and departure taxes • Excess baggage charges • Alcoholic and soft drinks, telecommunication charges, laundry costs and other charges of a personal nature • The customary gratuity at the end of the voyage for Hospitality Team members, ship’s crew and Expedition Team members (guidelines will be provided) • Travel insurance

M/V Ortelius & M/V Plancius

Includes: Return group transfers between airport and ship • Shipboard accommodation with daily housekeeping • All breakfasts, lunches and dinners on board throughout your voyage • Leadership throughout the voyage by an experienced Expedition Leader, including shore landings and other activities • All shore landings per the daily program • All Zodiac transfers and cruising per the daily program • Formal and informal presentations by the Expedition Team and guest speakers as scheduled • All miscellaneous service taxes and port charges throughout the program • Comprehensive pre-departure material • Loan of rubber boots during voyage.

Excludes: return airfares from the UK • Any additional pre or post voyage accommodation/land arrangements • Additional airport or airline security charges • Passport and visa expenses (we will be pleased to advise you on any necessary documentation, however this is passengers' own responsibility) • Government arrival and departure taxes • Excess baggage charges • Alcoholic and soft drinks, telecommunication charges, laundry costs and other charges of a personal nature • The customary gratuity at the end of the voyage for Hospitality Team members, ship’s crew and Expedition Team members (guidelines will be provided) • Travel insurance

MS Expedition

Includes: return airport transfers if arriving on day of embarkation and departing on day of disembarkation • Shipboard accommodation with daily housekeeping • All breakfasts, lunches and dinners on board throughout your voyage • Leadership throughout the voyage by an experienced Expedition Leader, including shore landings and other activities • All shore landings per the daily program • All Zodiac transfers and cruising per the daily program • Formal and informal presentations by the Expedition Team and guest speakers as scheduled • Spitsbergen Guidebook (provided locally) • All miscellaneous service taxes and port charges throughout the program • Expedition parka • Loan of rubber boots during voyage.

Excludes: return airfares from the UK • Any additional pre or post voyage accommodation/land arrangements • Additional airport or airline security charges • Passport and visa expenses (we will be pleased to advise you on any necessary documentation, however this is passengers' own responsibility) • Government arrival and departure taxes • Excess baggage charges • Alcoholic and soft drinks, telecommunication charges, laundry costs and other charges of a personal nature • The customary gratuity at the end of the voyage for Hospitality Team members, ship’s crew and Expedition Team members (guidelines will be provided) • Travel insurance

Sea Endurance

Includes Group transfer from airport to the ship for embarkation • Group transfer between ship and Longyearbyen town or airport on disembarkation • Shipboard accommodation with daily housekeeping • All breakfasts, lunches and dinners on board throughout your voyage • Leadership throughout the voyage by an experienced Expedition Leader, including shore landings and other activities • All shore landings per the daily program • All Zodiac transfers and cruising per the daily program • Formal and informal presentations by the Expedition Team and guest speakers as scheduled • Comprehensive pre-departure materials • An illustrated post-expedition log book • All miscellaneous service taxes and port charges throughout the program

Excludes Return airfares from the UK • Any additional pre- or post-voyage accommodation/meals/land arrangements • Additional airport or airline security charges • Passport and visa expenses (we will be pleased to advise you on any necessary documentation, however this is passengers' own responsibility) • Alcoholic and soft drinks, telecommunication charges, laundry costs and other charges of a personal nature • The customary gratuity at the end of the voyage for Hospitality Team members, ship’s crew and Expedition Team members (guidelines will be provided) • Travel insurance • Waterproof jackets, boots and trousers are not provided but are essential. Boots can be rented from Longyearbyen. Please contact us for details

 
We would be pleased to quote for the best available airfares and comprehensive travel insurance to suit your specific holiday requirements.

OFFERS

Arctic 2018: SAVE up to £3,080pp on selected voyages

Book by 30 November 2017
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