Around Spitsbergen - Kvitoya

Plancius Cruise Ship
Plancius
116 Passengers
Adventure Options

Voyage around Spitsbergen where we also visit Kvitøya. We have chances to see the King of the Arctic, Walrus, Reindeer, various bird species and surprisingly beautiful flora. We hope to get to the rarely visited Kvitøya farthest to the east, close to the Russian territory. The island is dominated by an icecap, which leaves a small area bare of ice and snow. We will land at the western tip at Andréneset, where the Swedish explorer André and his companions perished in 1898. We will also try to get to Kraemerpynten in the east, where an enormous group of Walrus resides.

NOTE: The chances that we can reach Kvitøya and complete a full Svalbard circumnavigation (based on our experiences from 2013—2017) are about 70%. In case we cannot complete a full circumnavigation, we may make a circumnavigation of Spitsbergen through Hinlopen Strait.

Brief Itinerary

Day 1 Embarkation and departure from Longyearbyen
Day 2 Cruising Krossfjorden
Day 3 Stop at the Seven Islands
Day 4 The great glacier front of Schweigaardbreen
Day 5 Ice cap at Kvitøya
Day 6 The longest glacier in Spitsbergen
Day 7 Barentsøya’s many bounties
Day 8 Land of the pointed mountains
Day 9 Bell Sund’s flora, fauna, and haunting history
Day 10 Arrival and disembarkation in Longyearbyen

Day 1 — Embarkation and departure from Longyearbyen

You touch down in Longyearbyen, the administrative center of Spitsbergen, the largest island of the Svalbard archipelago. Enjoy strolling around this former mining town, whose parish church and Svalbard Museum make for fascinating attractions. Though the countryside appears stark, more than a hundred species of plant have been recorded in it. In the early evening the ship sails out of Isfjorden, where you might spot the first minke whale of your voyage.

Day 2 — Cruising Krossfjorden

Heading north along the west coast, you arrive by morning in Krossfjorden. Here you might board the Zodiacs for a cruise near the towering blue-white face of the Fourteenth of July Glacier. On the green slopes near the glacier, colorful flowers bloom while flocks of kittiwakes and Brünnich’s guillemots nest on the cliffs. You have a good chance of spotting an Arctic fox scouting for fallen chicks, or a bearded seal paddling through the fjord.

In the afternoon you sail to Ny Ålesund, the northernmost settlement on Earth. Once a mining village served by the world’s most northerly railway – you can still see its tracks – Ny Ålesund is now a research center. Close to the community is a breeding ground for barnacle geese, pink-footed geese, and Arctic terns. And if you’re interested in the history of Arctic exploration, visit the anchoring mast used by polar explorers Amundsen and Nobile in their airships, Norge (1926) and Italia (1928).

Day 3 — Stop at the Seven Islands

North of Nordaustlandet, in the Seven Islands, you reach 80° north, just 540 mi (870 km) from the geographic North Pole. Polar bears inhabit this region, so the ship may park for several hours among the pack ice before continuing east.

Day 4 — The great glacier front of Schweigaardbreen

Pushing east to Nordaustlandet, you reach the area where the Italian captain Sora tried to rescue the Nobile Expedition in 1928. The focus here is the great glacier front of Schweigaardbreen, though you may also land at Firkantbukta, getting the chance to gain some altitude and take a few higher-elevation photos. Alternately, you could make a Zodiac cruise near Storøya, where you might encounter walruses.

Day 5 — Ice cap at Kvitøya

Today you try to reach the rarely visited Kvitøya, far to the east and close to Russian territory. The enormous ice cap covering this island leaves only a small area bare. You land at the western tip of Andréeneset, where the Swedish explorer S. A. Andrée and his companions perished in 1897. Another objective for the day is Kræmerpynten, where a sizable group of walruses reside.

Day 6 — The longest glacier in Spitsbergen

South of Nordaustlandet you may land on Isisøya, formerly a Nunatak area surrounded by glaciers but now an island surrounded by the sea. You then may pass by Bråswellbreen, part of the largest ice cap in Europe and famed for its meltwater waterfalls.

Day 7 — Barentsøya’s many bounties

The plan is to make landings in Freemansundet, though polar bears sometimes make this impossible. Potential stops on Barentsøya include Sundneset (for an old trapper’s hut), Kapp Waldburg (for its kittiwake colony), and Rindedalen (for a walk across the tundra). You might also cruise south to Diskobukta, though Kapp Lee is more likely your destination. On Kapp Lee is a walrus haul-out, Pomor ruins, and the chance for hikes along Edgeøya.

Day 8 — Land of the pointed mountains

You start the day by cruising the side fjords of the Hornsund area of southern Spitsbergen, taking in the spire-like peaks: Hornsundtind rises 4,695 ft (1,431 m), and Bautaen is a perfect illustration of why early Dutch explorers named this island Spitsbergen, meaning “pointed mountains.” There are 14 sizable glaciers in this area as well as opportunities for spotting seals, beluga whales, and polar bears.

Day 9 — Bell Sund’s flora, fauna, and haunting history

Today you find yourself in Bell Sund, one of the largest fjord systems in Svalbard. The ocean currents make this area slightly warmer than other areas in the archipelago, which shows in the relatively lush vegetation. Here there are excellent opportunities to enjoy both history and wildlife. A possibility is Ahlstrandhalvøya, at the mouth of Van Keulenfjorden, where piles of beluga skeletons can be found. These remains of 19th-century whale slaughter are a haunting reminder of the consequences of rampant exploitation. Fortunately, belugas were not hunted into extinction, and you have a good chance of coming across a pod. Alternately, while cruising the side fjords of Bellsund, you can explore tundra where reindeer like to feed as well as rock slopes where little auks are breeding.

Day 10 — Arrival and disembarkation in Longyearbyen

Every adventure, no matter how grand, must eventually come to an end. You disembark in Longyearbyen, taking home memories that will accompany you wherever your next adventure lies.

* Itinerary may be subject to change

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Snowshoe
Bilingual trip: English - German!
$4,0501 Berth$5,000Full$5,600Full$6,100 $6,500Full$7,350 
Bilingual trip: English - German!
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Bilingual trip: English - German!
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All rates are quoted per person in US Dollar, based on twin occupancy.

Single travelers can choose between "single occupancy" at a supplement of 1,7 x the Twin or Superior cabin rate , or "sharing basis" in Twin, Triple or Quadruple category at no additional cost.

Upon request (some voyages may be excluded), children under 16 with parents may receive 40% discount in Superior, Triple (sharing with 2 parents / adults) and Quadruple Cabins (sharing with 3 parents / adults).

Kayaking: $410 & must be pre-booked.

Transfer  supplement for  bus  shuttle  between  Akureyri (ship)  and Reykjavik hotel (6 hours): $90 one-way or $180 return & must be pre-booked.

Mandatory Emergency Evacuation insurance is required on all trips.

All trips subject to possible fuel surcharge.

DeckPlan_Plancius

   Superior
2 windows • 1 double bed • 1 sofa bed • Private shower & toilet • Desk & chair • Flatscreen TV • Telephone and Internet connection • Refrigerator • Coffee & tea maker • Hair dryer • Ample storage space
   Twin Deluxe
2 windows • 2 lower berths • Private shower & toilet • Desk & chair • Flatscreen TV • Telephone and Internet connection • Hair dryer • Ample storage space • These cabins are corner cabins and are slightly more spacious than the normal twin porthole/window cabins
   Twin Window
1 window • 2 lower berths • Private shower & toilet • Desk & chair • Flatscreen TV • Telephone and Internet connection • Hair dryer • Ample storage space
   Twin Porthole
1 porthole • 2 lower berths • Private shower & toilet • Desk & chair • Flatscreen TV • Telephone and Internet connection • Hair dryer • Ample storage space
   Triple Porthole
1 porthole • 1 upper berth & 2 lower berths • Private shower & toilet • Desk & chair • Flatscreen TV • Telephone and Internet connection • Hair dryer • Ample storage space
Suitable for families traveling with children
   Quadruple Porthole
1 porthole • 2 upper & lower berths • Private shower & toilet • Desk & chair • Flatscreen TV • Telephone and Internet connection • Hair dryer • Ample storage space
Suitable for families traveling with children