Springtime in Svalbard 9 Days aboard M/S Quest
Join this fantastic voyage aboard a small and intimate Arctic expedition ship to discover the breathtaking landscapes and bountiful wildlife of Spitsbergen’s enchanting west coast. Travelling in May, you can delight in watching the fairytale winter landscape transform into spring, an indescribable experience that is made even more exciting by the fact that your small expedition vessel will be able to sail into enthralling areas that are inaccessible to the larger expedition ships. This is also an excellent time to spot wildlife, with seals and walruses often being seen resting on the fjord ice, Svalbard reindeers and Arctic foxes still in their winter furs, and the iconic Polar bears venturing out and about with their new cubs. Birdlife will also be in abundance with the bird cliffs teeming with a variety of species. You can expect to see little auks, Brünnich’s guillemots, king eiders and rock ptarmigans amongst many others.
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 >
Wildlife Guide & PhotographerAndy is a 6th generation Falkland Islander, with a passion for wildlife, plants and photography. Raised in the Falkland Islands, Andy developed a close affinity with the Islands natural environment at a young age. School holidays where spent in the ‘camp’ or countryside with friends and family. For more than 10 years, Andy had the privilege of spending a time on Sea Lion Island, visiting his mother who managed one of the Islands premier tourist destinations. Read more >
Photographer and founder of the Travel Photographer Of The Year awardsA fascination with natural light and a passion with nature, landscape and travel underpin Chris Coe's photography. His images often have a striking simplicity and graphic quality. More recent work has introduced a subtlety with experimentation with both movement and light.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 >
Special Guest LecturerExclusive to this voyage, Doug Allan, a multi award winning polar photographer and cameraman, will be your special guest lecturer. Doug has been on over 20 expeditions to Svalbard to film its wildlife, and knows the wonders of this area more than most. Read more >
Special Guest Photography GuideChris was 32 when he finally realised he really did want to be a photo-journalist and walked out on his career in IT sales to become a wildlife photographer Read more >
- Springtime in Spitsbergen
- Spectacular scenery where fjords & glaciers abound
- Polar bears, whales and other wildlife
- Historical sites
- Abundant birdlife
- Exciting explorations by Zodiac and on foot
- Snowshoeing options available
- Full board accommodation on board ship
- 1 night hotel stay in Longyearbyen pre-expedition
- Programme of lectures by expert guides
- Shore and Zodiac excursions
- Illustrated post-expedition log
ITINERARY8 Nights 9 Days
Having arrived independently to Longyearbyen, the administrative capital of Svalbard, you will transfer to your hotel for your included overnight stay. Time allowing you can enjoy a walk around this unique Arctic town before settling down for a good night’s sleep in preparation for the adventures that lie ahead.
Exploring Western Spitsbergen
On the morning of day 2 we will begin our exploration of Svalbard with a tour around Longyearbyen, with lunch included, before making our way to the port to board your small expedition vessel to begin your voyage around Spitsbergen’s enchanting west coast.
As with all polar expedition cruises, flexibility throughout our voyage will be key, and as we travel through this untamed wilderness your experienced crew and captain will determine the best course for unparalleled scenic and wildlife experiences based on ice and weather conditions and likelihoods of wildlife encounters. Your crew are there to ensure you experience the very best of what Spitsbergen has to offer. Exploring by ship, Zodiac and on foot we will discover north and south of the dramatic west Spitsbergen coastline, with each day bringing a new experience and adventure. This could mean a wakeup call in the middle of the night as we sail by a polar bear on the ice, or spending more time in one destination than others due to the high concentration of wildlife. Whatever happens, this is sure to be the adventure of a lifetime!
Our route is likely to vary but there are some particular areas that we expect to visit during our time here. Our first stop is likely to be the bird cliffs of Alkhornet at the entrance to Isfjorden where we will go ashore to discover the beautiful tundra and spot some of the abundance of birdlife that is usually found here including Brünnich’s guillemots, barnacle geese, snow buntings, glaucous gulls and tens of thousands of kittiwakes. We are also likely to see Arctic foxes here as they stalk below the cliffs searching for eggs and other treats that may have dropped from above.
Next we will sail past the narrow strip of Prins Karls Forland to see its beautiful landscape of snow-covered mountains and search for seals in the surrounding waters, before sailing north to Kongsfjorden and Krossfjorden to explore around the scientific village of Ny-Ålesund and discover the beautifully sculpted front of the 14th of July glacier. Sailing further north we plan to reach Raudfjorden, an area of immense natural beauty that is dominated by beautiful glaciers and is a favourite spot for seals and abundant birdlife, before reaching Danskøya, the northernmost point of our voyage. It is here where two of the most courageous attempts to reach the North Pole started and there are still interesting remnants from these expeditions left on this site.
Turning to sail south we will venture close to the bottom of the island to reach Bellsund to visit beautiful Vårsolbukta where little auks nest by the tens of thousands and we can enjoy an exciting walk across the tundra. Our last stop is likely to be the majestic Hornsund to see the magnificent fjords and enormous glaciers that dominate the landscape. Here we will have our best chances of seeing the Kings of the Arctic…the iconic Polar bears!
Arrival back in to the port at Longyearbyen sadly signals the end of our voyage. After breakfast you will disembark, bid a fond farewell to your expedition crew and begin your journey home filled with enchanting memories of your Arctic adventure.
Please note: Various land and flight packages are available for getting to and from Longyearbyen, and also for extensions to your tour. Please enquire for further details.
A view from Above
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.
What a great trip! Wildfoot built a great trip for us and every aspect was spot on. Our Iguazu guide was fun, interesting and helpful and all the transfers were timely and comfortable. The Antarctica Trip was superb - WIldfoot had given us the best advice and helped us choose the right ship and tour for what we wanted - A truly memorable Experience Thank You Wildfoot
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