Spitsbergen Explorer - Akademik Vavilov
We begin our exploration of the Svalbard archipelago in Longyearbyen, capital city of this Norwegian Territory. Following our embarkation, sail out of Isfjorden (Ice Fjord) and begin exploration down the west coast and around the southern end of Spitsbergen, the larger of the two principal islands that make up the bulk of the Svalbard archipelago. From the moment we throw the lines and start our voyage we are in the land of the polar bear, beluga, walrus and reindeer so keep your eyes peeled for wildlife
- Complete exploration of the Svalbard Archipelago
- Arctic wildlife such as walrus and polar bears
- Rugged seabird cliffs
- Historical sites and settlements
- Spectacular glaciers and towering ice
- Zodiac cruising, kayaking, hiking and photography opportunities
Spitsbergen and the Svalbard archipelago offer a tremendous wildlife and birdlife experience, as well as a fascinating lesson in glaciology. The islands are the northernmost inhabited places on the planet and would be permanently locked in ice if not for the moderating influence of the Atlantic Gulf Stream current. First used as a whaling base in the 17th and 18th centuries, the islands are now celebrated as a breeding ground for many seabirds, along with marine mammals and the elusive polar bear. Our expedition ship is the renowned Akademik Ioffe, perfectly suited for remote exploration.
We commence in Longyearbyen, the principal community of this frosty Norwegian territory. Our 11-night itinerary allows for a thorough exploration of the archipelago and we first head south, then northwest and then along the northern coastline of the main island of Spitsbergen. If ice conditions permit, we cruise deep into the Hinlopen Strait - which separates the island of Spitsbergen from the more easterly island of Nordaustlandet.
As we explore the waterways of Svalbard, we enjoy frequent stops at well known wildlife sites, places of historic interest and witness glaciers, ice filled bays, fascinating plant life, all the while soaking up the stunning beauty that surrounds us. Our expedition ship is uniquely capable of working in and among the sea ice and our Captain and crew are among the most experienced ice navigators in the world. Off the northern coastline of Svalbard, the vast Arctic ice cap stretches as far as the eye can see and we maximize our time exploring along the edges of the pack ice.
This area is full of wildlife including seals, walrus, birds - and the iconic polar bear. As we return south to the main island group we continually encounter a great diversity of wildlife including beluga whales, walrus, reindeer, Arctic fox and copious birdlife. Our days are filled with guided shore excursions offering excellent hiking opportunities, cruising in the zodiac boats and exploring on the ship. Throughout our journey we enjoy a comprehensive programme of presentations, these will provide an excellent background to our expedition.
As with all our expeditions, safety is our top priority. For that reason weather, ice or other conditions may require us to change our itinerary and shore excursions as we go but that is half the fun of Polar exploring. Predictability is a word that has no relevance in this environment.
The right gear for your trip – included!
During the voyage you will have the use of an expedition gear package free of charge. Containing around $US900 worth of essential equipment, this kit includes a quality waterproof/ windproof jacket and bib-pants plus insulated rubber boots designed for extended walking. We also include a set of binoculars and a Nordic trekking pole for use when on shore. A waterproof backpack completes your package. This kit saves you buying expensive clothing and equipment you may only ever use once. It also eliminates the need to carry such cumbersome gear to the ship (total weight around 8kg/17lbs).
US$1000 Travel Credit!
Book before 31 January 2019 - save with US$1000 Flight Credit (or equivalent currency). Credit amount varies by departure and is shown during the booking process.
An in-depth expedition circumnavigating the wondrous Svalbard archipelago.
OverviewWe begin our exploration of the Svalbard archipelago in Longyearbyen, capital city of this Norwegian Territory. Following our embarkation, sail out of Isfjorden (Ice Fjord) and begin exploration down the west coast and around the southern end of Spitsbergen, the larger of the two principal islands that make up the bulk of the Svalbard archipelago. From the moment we throw the lines and start our voyage we are in the land of the polar bear, beluga, walrus and reindeer so keep your eyes peeled for wildlife.
Expedition Vessel: M/V Akademik Sergey Vavilov
Designed for polar research, the Akademik Sergey Vavilov, also known as the One Ocean Voyager is modern, comfortable, safe and ice-strengthened. From small group sessions to briefings for all passengers, the public spaces onboard the ship ideally suited for each and every need. A separate bar and lounge located on deck 6 with expansive 180 degree views, as well as a library provide ideal places to sit and relax or catch up on some reading. Enjoy the sumptuous meals prepared for you by the culinary team in the dining room, which can host all clients in a single seating with ample room. Other facilities include the theatre style presentation room, gift-shop, fitness room, massage room, hot water spa, sauna, and salt water plunge pool.
- Voyage and accommodation on board as indicated in the itinerary.
- All meals throughout the voyage aboard the ship including snacks, coffee and tea.
- Free use of onboard expedition rubber boots & wet weather gear (you are welcome to bring your own as well)
- All shore excursions and activities throughout the voyage by Zodiac and guided hikes/walks.
- Educational presentations and leadership by experienced expedition guides, naturalist staff, and hospitality staff.
- Access to onboard multimedia room and download stations
- An emergency trained English speaking physician
- All miscellaneous service taxes and port charges throughout the program.
- Comprehensive pre-departure material.
- Any airfare whether on scheduled or charter flights.
- Pre- and post land arrangements.
- Transfers to the vessel.
- Passport and visa expenses.
- Government arrival and departure taxes.
- Baggage, cancellation and personal insurance (which is strongly recommended).
- Excess baggage charges.
- All items of a personal nature such as additional purchases onboard in the gift shop, laundry, bar, beverage charges and telecommunication charges.
- The customary gratuity at the end of the voyages for stewards and other service personnel aboard (guidelines will be provided).
Expeditions Online Newsletter
Sign up to be an Expeditions Online insider and receive info on exclusive deals, discounts and more!