North Spitsbergen Arctic Spring
North Spitsbergen Arctic Spring by Sailing Ship 8 days aboard SV Rembrandt van Rijn
This sailing adventure on board a three masted schooner takes you along the pack ice and into the spectacular fjord systems of north Spitsbergen. Amazing scenery and great chances of spotting wildlife, including polar bears
Namibia Birding and Photography GuideAn accomplished and experienced Namibia birding and photographic guide, Toni holds a Namibia Academy for Tourism and Hospitality Level 3 qualification (the highest level attainable in Namibia) and is widely renowned for her extensive knowledge of the cultures, ornithology, flora, astronomy and wildlife of the country. Read more >
Falklands Expert & GuideBorn in Chartres in the West Falklands, Jenny grew up on the family farm where her love for animals was nurtured by the25,000 sheep, horses and cows that lived alongside her. Forever a nature, conservation and wildlife enthusiast Jenny has travelled extensively throughout the Falkland Islands, visiting each and every wildlife island at least once, and even travelling around some by yacht. Read more >
- Spectacular ice and snow scenery
- Polar bears and other wildlife
- Sailing ship adventure
- Full board accommodation on board ship
- All Zodiac and shore excursions
- Free use of snowshoes and rubber boots
- Programme of lectures by experts
ITINERARY7 Nights 8 Days
- Day 1 | Longyearbyen
- Day 2 | Alkhornet
- Day 3 | Fuglefjorden
- Day 4 | Raudfjord
- Day 5 | Reindyrsflya
- Day 6 | 14th of July Glacier
- Day 7 | Gipsvika
- Day 8 | Longyearbyen
After arriving in Longyearbyen, you may wish to visit the Svalbard Museum which has an interesting collection on the history of Spitsbergen, the mining industry and polar exploration. In the evening we sail, setting course for Trygghamna.
In the morning we will see the remains of a 17th century English whaling station and an 18th century Pomor hunting station. From Trygghamna we walk to Alkhornet a large seabird cliff, where the birds are prospecting their breeding places. Below the cliffs we hope to see Arctic fox and reindeer. In Forlandsundet we visit a haul out place of walrus at Poolepynten if sea conditions allows, or at Sarstangen.
Today we sail into Fuglefjorden with views on Svitjodbreen and Birgerbukta. Great skuas nest here and there are good chances of spotting polar bears. We will try to visit Ytre Norskøya, a small island which was used for many years as a lookout point for Dutch whalers. There we can still follow their tracks to the summit of the island, passing excellent bird cliffs on the way. On shore the remains of 17th century blubber ovens can be found, while Arctic skua and common eider breed among the graves of 200 Dutch whalers.
Raudfjord on the north coast of Spitsbergen is a beautiful fjord with spectacular glaciers. It is also a favourite with ringed and bearded seal, has good seabird colonies, and offers good chances for spotting polar bear and beluga. Jermaktangen, at the fjord’s eastern entrance, is a geography lesson in the erosion of the land by the sea.
If sea-ice conditions allow, we may land on the northern-side of Reindyrsflya, the largest tundra area of Spitsbergen. The vast undulating plain is a good grazing area for reindeer and several species of waders also breed here. The area’s lakes offer good chances of spotting red-throated diver and king eider. Alternatively we land at Fuglesangen, where we can sit among the little auks.
14th of July Glacier
In the morning we are at the 14th of July Glacier. Not far from the glacier we see a breeding site for Brünnich’s guillemot, razorbill and puffin. The guano of these bird colonies, the southward exposure and the sheltered situation, give rise to a relatively rich vegetation with many species of flowering plants. In the afternoon we sail to Ossian Sarsfjellet, where we can observe the kittiwakes and Brünnich’s guillemots on the cliffs at close quarters. Alternatively we visit Ny Ålesund, the northernmost permanently inhabited village in the world, a centre for polar research and a former starting point for many North Pole expeditions (Amundsen and Nobile for example). Barnacle geese, pink-footed geese, common eider, Arctic tern and several species of wader can be seen at close quarters. The reindeer here are smaller than their mainland relatives and do not form large herds.
In the morning we are on Bohemanflya, an extensive tundra area with its own birdlife and spectacular geological formations along the coast. At Gipsvika deep inside Isfjorden we will go ashore near the majestic cliff of Templet. It is a stunning area with spectacular mountains eroded into shape in the sedimentary rock from the upper carboniferous created around 290 million years ago.
Arrive in the morning and disembark
What Our Customers
Superlatives abound – a truly amazing experience...awesome. Thanks to all for making it such a memorable experience.
We have just returned from our Spitsbergen trip with Wildfoot and had to tell you what an amazing time we had! We saw 6 polar bears including a mother with 2 cubs as well as whales, walruses and lots of birds. The ship (Expedition) was really comfortable and the guides were so helpful and friendly. Thank you so much for making it all so easy.
I came to Wildfoot because a friend had booked with you when you were Antarctica Bound and they were right. Everything went perfectly, even when our flight was cancelled, you made sure we still made it to the ship with time to spare. L’Austral is a beautiful ship with first class service and food and the guides looked after us well. Very happy to recommend Wildfoot and L’Austral...
We had always wanted to see the Arctic and travelling all the way from Australia needed lots of information. After getting nowhere, we came across Wildfoot and found people who knew what they were talking about! Sara and John were so helpful and made the process easy, suggesting Iceland Greenland and Spitsbergen. This was perfect for us – amazing scenery and lots of wildlife, especially the polar bears in Spitsbergen. Thanks for everything. Ps, the ship was great too!
Just wanted to say thank you for suggesting a trip to Franz Josef Land as something different for the Arctic. We had a super trip and really enjoyed the Sea Spirit. Galapagos next!
Standing on the North Pole has been an ambition of mine since childhood and now I have done it! Thank you for making the process so easy - seeing polar bears and whales too was a real bonus.
The Sea Spirit expedition was excellent and the team organising it all were extremely good. 10 out of 10. Everything went very smoothly. The Iceland extension worked perfectly, all the organisation, connections etc. were excellent
The cruise was beyond my expectations. Got to see everything the captain wanted, even a polar bear mother with three cubs. Coal Miners Cabins were smashing. I did loads of birding and exploring over three days. All the people were great from the expedition leaders down to the passengers. So glad to have achieved my ambition of some 50 years standing and got amongst the ice of the Arctic, walked amongst it’s islands and witnessed the antics of its wonderful wildlife. What’s next??? I’ll need to speak with Sara again.
Thanks so much for enabling me to get to places I had always wanted to see from a very young age. “Ace” as my boys used to say!
Just wanted to send a quick note to say thank you very much for all your help in arranging our recent trip to Svalbard. Everything ran smoothly and the trip was a great success. Unfortunately I had to flew back a few days early and missed out on Isfjord Radio, which the rest of the team said was a brilliant place with amazing food, still the Basecamp Hotel and Nordenskiold Lodge were pretty amazing places, so I’m not complaining!
Writing back to tell you that the trip to the Arctic was all that it promised and more. It was a great wild-life sightseeing opportunity and the staff were really good.I had an excellent trip and have thousands of photos to go through.
I had an absolutely fabulous time won the Sergey Vavilov, it is an excellent ship. Sara was indeed right in her recommendation that they would be the most likely to push north into the ice to find the polar bears. We even circumnavigated Spitsbergen which was awesome and not o n the itinerary.It is such a wonderful way to take a trip when you are on your own – so if any of your potential single clients are unsure, definitely recommend it – I didn’t feel alone from the moment I stepped on board. I will be at the Birdfair next weekend and so will catch up with whoever is there – regarding this trip, and potentially my next!
Great cruise, staff and expedition team. Had a great trip.
Great cruise, staff and expedition team. Had a great trip.
We had a wonderful time, even though we didn't do all the places we were supposed to but we all felt were we went instead couldn't beaten. Saw animals I wanted to see. Bit worried what the food was like as some of the ships cooking leaves something to be desired, but food was very good. We thought all the guides were brilliant and informative, friendly and knowledgeable It was far better than we expected and even my husband thoroughly enjoyed it!
I wanted to let you know that I had a wonderful cruise in the Russian Far East. The landscape and destination were inspiring, we had some excellent wildlife sightings (sea otter, grey whale, Steller's sea eagle, snowy owl and Arctic fox were all firsts for me), and the Heritage team were superb. Rough seas forced a few changes to the itinerary but we also had some fabulous weather. All in all, a thrilling travel experience.Thanks once again for all your efforts
I thought you might like to know that this was an excellent holiday. Our guide, Brad, was absolutely wonderful, his enthusiasm and knowledge made the holiday even better. All in all the whole trip was excellent and we saw lots of bears, 24 on the first day. Fewer on the second and third days but still plenty, as well as arctic foxes,silver foxes and snowy owls. Even on the last day near the town we saw a bear on rocks by the beach.
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