Franz Josef Land: Sea Spirit

Arctic

Venture on the unique expedition to the remotest and rarely visited Russian High Arctic archipelago – Franz Josef Land. Observe magnificent “moon” landscapes of the islands. Meet polar bears, walruses and arctic birds in the wild. See mysterious stone spheres of Champ Island. Follow in the wake of famous Arctic explorers. Compare two High Arctic archipelagoes – Spitsbergen and Franz Josef Land

  • Spectacular coasts, fjords and glaciers of Spitsbergen
  • Rare chance to visit one of the most remote Arctic destinations, Franz Josef Land
  • Incredible rock formations and moon-like landscapes
  • Arctic wildlife such as polar bears, walrus and seals
  • Huge concentrations of birdlife
  • The luxury expedition vessel Sea Spirit

Early Booking Offer

Early Booking Offer 2020 Season: Book before 31 October 2019 and save 10% on Triple, Main Deck and Classic Suites - or 15% on Superior suites and higher categories. Quote Promocode SPX10 or SPX15 during the booking process.

Stewart's Take

A rare and wonderful combination in the Arctic - a real explorer's voyage!

Overview

Venture on the unique expedition to the remotest and rarely visited Russian High Arctic archipelago – Franz Josef Land. Observe magnificent “moon” landscapes of the islands. Meet polar bears, walruses and arctic birds in the wild. See mysterious stone spheres of Champ Island. Follow in the wake of famous Arctic explorers. Compare two High Arctic archipelagoes – Spitsbergen and Franz Josef Land.
Day 1: Longyearbyen, Svalbard 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. Day 2: Embarkation in Longyearbyen 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. Days 3-4: Across the Barents Sea From Isfjorden we proceed straight to Franz Josef Land across the Barents Sea. Presentations and workshops by our expert staff prepare us for what lies ahead. In these far northern latitudes, it is possible to encounter sea ice even in summer. Along the way, we’ll remain vigilant for sightings of ice-dependent marine mammals such as the elusive bowhead whale, various Arctic seal species, and the majestic polar bear. Days 5-11: Exploration of Franz Josef Land This is expedition cruising at its most authentic. As such, our route and exploration opportunities in Franz Josef Land are heavily dependent on weather and sea ice. Our experienced captain and expedition leader decide our best route and continually adjust plans as opportunities warrant in this wild and remote corner of the Arctic. Between obligatory initial and final calls at the Russian polar station Nagurskoye in Cambridge Bay we are free to explore the many waterways and islands of this unique Arctic wilderness. The archipelago, part of the Russian Arctic National Park since 2012, is a nature sanctuary. Polar bears and other quintessential High Arctic wildlife—such as walruses and some rare whale species—can be spotted anytime, anywhere in and around Franz Josef Land. Scree slopes and cliffs around the islands host enormous nesting colonies of seabirds such as guillemots, dovekies, and kittiwakes. We’ll take advantage of the 24-hour daylight to exploit every opportunity for wildlife viewing. Franz Josef Land is dominated by glaciation, which covers 85% of the archipelago. Immense tidewater glaciers and glittering icebergs provide a stunning backdrop to our voyage. Franz Josef Land is also home to some interesting geological features, such as the mysterious stone spheres on Champ Island. Collectors of geographical extremes may take note that Cape Fligely on Rudolf Island is the northernmost point of land in the Eastern Hemisphere. Franz Josef Land also offers visitors the opportunity to walk in the footsteps of famous polar explorers at well-preserved historical sites. The journals of explorers such as Julius von Payer, Benjamin Leigh Smith, Frederick George Jackson, and Fridtjof Nansen come alive at Cape Norway, Cape Flora, Eira Harbour, and Cape Tegetthoff. Memorials, monuments, crosses and the remains of dwellings are testimony to incredible historical events that are further illuminated by our expert lecturers. Tikhaya Bukhta is currently a Russian Arctic National Park ranger station occupying Soviet-era research buildings and was also a major base for polar expeditions. Nearby the fascinating columnar basalt cliffs of Rubini Rock are home to thousands of nesting seabirds. Our primary focus during this expedition is the exploration of the Russian archipelago of Franz Josef Land. However, the number of days spent there depends on ice conditions. Final daily programs are subject to change and the decision of the captain and expedition leader. Days 12-13: Back to Svalbard Following our week of exploration in Franz Josef Land, we cross back through the bountiful waters of the Barents Sea and then along the coastal islands of the Svalbard Archipelago. From panoramic open decks, enjoy Arctic landscapes and wildlife sightings. Bountiful inshore and offshore waters are home to walrus and a wide variety of whales. The crossing also gives our expedition team the opportunity to offer a final presentation or two in the Oceanus Lounge. Day 14: Disembarkation in Longyearbyen, Svalbard After breakfast we say farewell in the town of Longyearbyen, where we started our expedition. We provide a transfer to the airport, or to the town center if you plan to spend more time here. As you look back on your wonderful experience, you may already be looking forward to your next incredible adventure to the ice! Important: Itinerary, landings and all other activities during the cruise depend strongly on ice and weather conditions and are subject to the decisions of the Expedition Leader and the Captain of the vessel. Encounters with any mentioned wildlife cannot be guaranteed.

Luxury Expedition Ship M/S Sea Spirit

MS Sea Spirit, luxury, small expedition ship

Sail aboard the remarkably comfortable Sea Spirit and experience the polar regions in grand style with spacious suites. Carrying a maximum of 112 passengers this outstanding vessel, approved for polar waters, is equipped with rubber inflatable boats - called Zodiacs- for shore transfers and cruising. Kayaking and camping options are available on select departures. All suites have facilities en suite and exterior views. Deluxe Suites, Premium Suites and the Owner's Suite have private balconies for viewing the breathtaking landscapes of the Arctic, Antarctica, South Georgia and the Falklands. Cruise with all the comfort of home - king-size beds (twin beds for those who prefer them), an open bar, balconies and a hot tub. Plus enjoy the amenities of a fine hotel, while a resident photographer helps you take brag-worthy photos.

For full information about this vessel click here...

Included
  • 1 pre-voyage hotel night;
  • Group transfer to the ship on day of embarkation;
  • Group transfer to airport or central location upon disembarkation;
  • Shipboard accommodation;
  • All scheduled landings/excursions (other than optional);
  • Leadership throughout the voyage by our experienced Expedition Leader & Expedition Team;
  • All meals on board throughout the voyage;
  • Tea and coffee station 24 hours daily;
  • A pair of rubber boots on loan for shore landings;
  • Expedition parka;
  • Welcome and Farewell cocktails;
  • All port fees;
  • Pre-departure materials;
  • Digital Voyage Log;
  • Group transfer to airport or central location upon disembarkation
Excluded
  • Airfare;
  • Visa and passport fees (For this trip Russian visa is required. See your country’s Russian consulate or embassy for details);
  • 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;
  • Staff gratuities.
  • Emergency Evacuation Insurance to a minimum benefit of USD 200,000
Deposits - Reservations require a deposit of 20% per person at the time you receive a booking confirmation from Expeditions Online. A payment link will be sent to you and this may be paid by major credit card. Bookings within 90 days of departure require full payment. Voyage rates are quoted in U.S. dollars and are based on passengers sharing a cabin. Rates are based on anticipated fuel costs at the time of departure multiplied by a maximum daily usage. There will be no fuel surcharge for voyages if the price of applicable fuel, delivered locally, does not exceed US$1150 per metric ton. Should the price go above this a surcharge, to cover only the increase in fuel costs, may apply. In this case agents will be notified immediately and passengers will have the right to cancel their reservations within 14 days of notice of increase without penalty. Share Travel and Single Suplements - If you are travelling alone and wish to share this is available only in the following categories: Triple Classic, Main Deck and Classic Suites. If you prefer, single occupancy of a twin cabin is available at 1.7 times the twin rate and available only in Main Deck and Classic Suites; single occupancy of a twin cabin is available at 2 times the twin rate in the Superior, Deluxe, Premium and Owner Suites. Final Payments - Balances are due 90 days prior to departure. Balance payments may be paid by bank transfer, or on request by credit card (subject to a 2% surcharge). Cancellations - All requests for cancellation must be received in writing to Expeditions Online. Cancellations received 120 days or more prior to departure, are refunded less a fee of $750 per person. Cancellations received from 120 to 91 days prior to departure, are subject to 20% per person cancellation fee. If cancellation occurs less than 90 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. We strongly recommend that you obtain adequate trip cancellation insurance. Booking Terms - Please read carefully the General Booking Conditions for Expeditions Online. This voyage is operated by Poseidon Expeditions and you additionally travel under their terms and conditions as the operator as well as of the Shipping Company/transport carrier. Details will be forwarded to you at the time of booking.
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