Classic Spitsbergen Explorer 12 daysAboard: Ocean Adventurer Ultramarine
A classic expedition exploring the fjords and coastline of Spitsbergen searching for polar bears, whales, walrus, birdlife and other fauna, as well as enjoying springtime floral displays on the tundra and marvelling at spectacular mountain and glacier scenery.
Enjoy Zodiac cruises and on-board presentations, as well hiking and kayaking opportunities as you immerse yourself in the wildlife capital of the Arctic.
PLEASE NOTE: This itinerary requires a mandatory transfer package which includes a hotel stay in Helsinki pre-voyage, charters flights between Helsinki and Longyearbyen, and road transfers between hotels, airports and ship. This package is currently priced at £800.
This trip operates on various dates aboard 2 different vessels. Mentioned activities may not be applicable to all departure dates. Please enquire for full rates and dates.
- Spectacular wildlife viewing, including the iconic polar bears and whales
- Myriad birdlife
- Hiking and Kayaking options
- Amazing scenery
- Midnight sun
- Exciting Zodiac cruises and shore excursions
- Full board accommodation on board ship
- Programme of expert lectures
- Guided Zodiac excursions
- Expedition parka
- Loan of rubber boots
So much to experience
Our popularitinerary Suggestions
All our itinerary holidays are fully customisable
Helsinki to Longyearbyen
Your Arctic expedition will begin in the Finnish capital city of Helsinki where after arriving independently you can make your way to your hotel close to the airport for your overnight stay. You may wish to arrive a couple of days early to allow time to sample some of this vibrant city’s many delights.
On the morning of day 2 you will join the transfer to the airport for your charter flight to Longyearbyen, the administrative capital of Svalbard. Upon arrival there will be some time to explore this unique Arctic town before you board your ship and settle in to your comfortable surroundings. As we set sail you will get fantastic views of the mountainous background and dramatic landscapes of this remote settlement. Your experienced expedition crew will brief you on what’s ahead as you embark on your Arctic adventure.
For the next 9 days you will immerse yourself in the beauty of this spectacular remote island, on a constant search for the wildlife that makes this part of the world so intriguing. Exploring western Spitsbergen as well as stunning fjords and outlying islands to the north, you will embrace the very nature of expedition cruising as there will be no particular fixed itinerary for your cruise. However there are a number of destinations that you can expect to visit and your experienced expedition team will choose the best course for optimum wildlife viewing and the best places from which to get an insight into the history and geology of Spitsbergen. Some of the areas you can expect to visit include Hornsund, the 14th of July Glacier, Smeerenburg, Alkhornet, Phippsoya and the Hinlopen Strait.
In Phippsøya polar bear viewing is almost guaranteed, with this area being one of their more favoured hunting areas. At the towering cliffs of nearby Alkefjellet, where as well as excellent bird spotting opportunities, polar bears and Arctic foxes frequent the area in search of free bird egg meals. For exceptional photography opportunities Torellneset has it all. Walrus haul-outs are very common here and as you come across the noisy spectacle of these lumbering giants vying for a choice spot on the coastline you will want to have your camera ready!
There is no shortage of natural beauty in Spitsbergen and one of the very best ways to experience this is to join an optional kayaking excursion through the more isolated pockets of the area. If weather conditions permit there may also be a chance for a snow-shoeing excursion in Smeerenburg where you can visit a memorial erected in 1906. This historical site honours the whalers who lost their lives in the 17th and 18th centuries while working in extreme Arctic conditions.
Whichever course your expedition team choose for your thrilling Spitsbergen adventure you can be assured of remarkable scenic sights, from polar flora to immense glaciers, exceptional wildlife viewing and a sense of true wilderness in these beautiful lands at the top of the world.
Longyearbyen to Helsinki
Our arrival back into Longyearbyen signals the end of our exciting Spitsbergen cruise. A group transfer will take you to the airport for your return charter flight to Helsinki. Should you wish to spend more time in Longyearbyen there are numerous possibilities for more Arctic adventures so please feel free to ask for options and advice.
A view from Above
Ocean Adventurer (previously known as Sea Adventurer) is a purpose built expedition ship with ice-strengthened hull and first class accommodation and facilities. All 61 cabins have outside views and private facilities, including some with exterior access and outside seating. Public areas include dining room, lounge and presentation room, library, 2 bars, gift shop, clinic and exercise room. Other facilities are satellite communication and massage therapist. There is a forward observation deck and other open deck areas.
The stylish, brand-new (2021) Ultramarine Polar vessel redefines what is possible in polar expeditions, with two twin-engine helicopters allowing for the ship to offer an unrivalled portfolio of adventure activities and allowing guests to delve deeper into the Polar regions than on any other ship. Featuring sublime onboard comfort, more outdoor wildlife viewing vantage points than rival ships, cutting-edge technology and advanced safety systems, the Ultramarine is simply ahead of its game. An innovative mix of sustainability features that exceed all industry standards and the most spacious suites in its category add even further to the reasons why this pristine vessel will be sure to delight intrepid Polar adventurers.
Allowing for more activities than any other vessel in its category, guests can immerse themselves in their unforgettable Polar surroundings on a huge range of optional adventures including helicopter flightseeing, camping on ice, kayaking, stand-up paddleboarding, alpine hiking, cross-country skiing and mountaineering to name just a few. Onboard, guests can enjoy 2 dining areas, 4 bars, a spa and fitness centre, ocean view sauna, a panorama lounge, walkaround deck, library and a lecture theatre.
7 categories of stylish cabins and suites are available, ranging from solo panorama cabins to exclusive suites with private balconies and luxurious fittings. Features of the cabins and suites include spa-inspired private bathrooms with heated floors, premium beds and linens, picture windows or private balconies and HD flatscreen TVs.
Please note: Helicopter flights are not permitted in Spitsbergen.
Too much to choose from? This is where we come in
Take advantage of our vast experience, passion and expertise to help you hand craft the perfect Arctic adventure for you.
Amy’s abiding love of adventure travel has taken her to some of the most incredible wildlife-rich places on Earth. Her vast experience and genuine desire to share her knowledge makes her an outstanding and invaluable person to help you organise your wildlife adventure trip.
With a lifetime of unforgettable nature and adventure based travel under his belt, Simon shares his passion, enthusiasm and hands-on experience to help create the perfect itinerary for every client.
Mike has more than fifteen years hands-on experience in the industry, travelling to some of the most incredible wild places on the planet. His far-reaching knowledge and invaluable skills will ensure that your wildlife travel adventure is a dream come true.