noorderlicht polar bear cruise

North Spitsbergen, Arctic Autumn

  • Overview
    This sailing expedition in Spitsbergen will be carried out by the sailing vessel Noorderlicht. This beautiful vessel will bring you to the remotest places around Spitsbergen. Sailing northwards we visit Magdalenafjord, one of the most beautiful places on Spitsbergen, with many impressive glacier faces. During a shore visit we will view the remains of 17th century English whaling activities. We can also visit some big seabird colonies particularly noteworthy for their Little Auk.
    Duration: 12 days
    Passengers: 20 passengers
    Embarkation Point: Longyearbyen, Spitsbergen
    Disembarkation Point: Longyearbyen, Spitsbergen
    Physical rating: Soft Adventure
    Fly/Cruise: Cruise only
    Single Supplement: 1.7x twin rate or share options
  • Itinerary
    • Day 1 - Longyearbyen, Svalbard; Embarkation Day

      After arriving in Longyearbyen, the ‘capital’ (actually the administrative centre) of Spitsbergen, 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 afternoon we sail, setting course for Alkhornet, a high cliff. Below the cliffs we often see Arctic Fox and reindeer. We continue to Trygghamna to visit the remains of a 17th century English whaling station and an 18th century Russian Pomor station.

    • Day 2/5 - Bell Sund

      We leave Trygghamna early in the morning and sail to the north side of Bellsund. Bellsund is a fjord system with two major branches (Van Mijenfjord, Van Keulenfjord) and one smaller side bay (Recherchefjord). The geology is fascinating and has created amazing landscapes, such as the long, narrow island of Akseløya that blocks Van Mijenfjord almost completely. In Fridtjovhamna, the calving glacier Fridtjovbreen is surrounded by picturesque mountains. The rich wildlife of the area has attracted hunters throughout several centuries - we will walk in their footsteps and see remains of their huts - for example, at Ahlstrandhalvøya. Recherchefjord is one of the places in Spitsbergen with the highest concentration of historical sites, dating back to 17th century whalers and the mining period of the early 20th century. The glacier Recherchebreen ends at a lagoon, likely to be frozen in October, with many smaller icebergs. Polar Bear are likely to be present anywhere in the Bellsund area, and we will keep a keen watch to find them. We have also seen Beluga (white whales) in this area.

    • Day 6 - Barentsburg

      We will pay a visit to Barentsburg, the only inhabited Russian settlement in Spitsbergen, or to Colesbukta, an abandoned Russian coal mining settlement.

    • Day 7 - Isfjord

      We sail into the inner reaches of the Isfjord system, where during nights with open sky we will experience temperatures of minus 10 degrees C, and new ice will be forming on the heads of the fjords.

    • Day 8 - Longyearbyen, Svalbard; Disembarkation

      Departure by scheduled flight from Longyearbyen to Oslo.

    Please consider that our voyages are expeditionary in nature. This means, that there are no concrete itineraries, your captain and expedition leader will utilise their vast experience to chart the best course for your expedition depending on the climatic and environmental conditions. Mentioned highlights and wildlife cannot be guaranteed.

  • Highlights & Activities

    Endless Arctic nights

    Svalbard is the Arctic North as you always dreamed it existed. This wondrous archipelago is a land of dramatic snow-drowned peaks and glaciers, of vast icefields and forbidding icebergs, an elemental place where the seemingly endless Arctic night and the perpetual sunlight of summer carry a deeper kind of magic. One of Europe's last great wildernesses, this is also the domain of more polar bears than people, a terrain rich in epic legends of polar exploration.

    The Polar Bear

    To many people, the polar bear is the Arctic. The sight of such an impressive silky white bear wandering the frozen Arctic seas in search of seals symbolizes the cold, isolated nature of the Arctic so well. Polar bears are marine mammals because they spend so much of their lives away from land. In the high Arctic where there is always some sea ice to travel on, polar bears range over ice floes in the pack ice hunting seals all summer. In some areas (e.g. southern Hudson Bay, southern Svalbard) they are simply forced to come ashore. Polar bears rarely venture inland.

  • Inclusions

    All meals on board

    Onboard your expedition all meals are included and prepared by our chefs. Meals are prepared to a restaurant standard and to cater for most diet requirements.

    All Zodiac excursions

    During the course of your expedition, you will have direct access to our onboard expedition team. Our expedition team members are a wealth of information, they have backgrounds in exploration or science based backgrounds. Our teams will usually comprise of naturalists, historians, geologists and ornithologists.

    Your expedition team members will expertly guide you off the ship and provide you with firsthand knowledge about the geology and wildlife of the region. Back onboard the vessel, team members hold lectures about their studies or the wildlife that was seen during the course of the day.

    Inclusions / Exclusions

    Included in your Expedition

    - Free use of rubber expedition boots
    - Comprehensive pre-departure material
    - AECO and government fees
    - Port taxes
    - All shore excursions and lectures
    - All accommodation and meals on board

    Not included in your Expedition

    - Gratuities
    - Internet / Wifi & Phone
    - Laundry
    - Beverages
    - Mandatory waterproof gear not provided
    - Baggage / cancellation / interruption and medical travel insurance
    - Arrival and departure taxes
    - Passport & Visa expenses
    - Pre and post-cruise travel
    - Any airfare whether scheduled or charter flights
  • Map
    Oceanwide exp north spits arctic spring
  • Gallery
  • Vessel

    NOORDERLICHT

    The ‘Noorderlicht’ was originally built in 1910 in Flensburg, Germany as a three-masted schooner. For most of her existence she served as a light-vessel on the Baltic. In 1991 the present owners purchased the hull and re-rigged and refitted her thoroughly, under the rules of “Register Holland”. The ‘Noorderlicht’ now has a well-balanced two-masted schooner rig and is capable of sailing the seven seas, and is therefor well suited for expedition cruising among small islands and offer good open deck viewing areas, also when under sail. The 2 inflatable rubber crafts (zodiacs) enable landing and wildlife viewing opportunities in otherwise inaccessible areas. The qualified captains have a great experience of the oceans. Together with the rest of the crew, they will do everything possible to ensure that you have a wonderful and unforgettable journey. The ‘Noorderlicht’ provides accommodation for 20 travellers in comfortable twin cabins. All cabins have upper and lower berths, a cupboard and wash basin with hot and cold water. Shared shower (4) and toilet (5) facilities are conveniently located. All cabins have a small hatch in the ceiling which vary in size, except cabin 6 which has a small, locked porthole in the ceiling but ventilation slots in the door. On occasion and depending on weather situation those hatches will be opened by the crew to allow fresh air ventilation of the complete lower deck (including cabin 6) while passengers go ashore.

    Features & Facilities
    • Sailing ship
    • Observation decks
    • galley
    Key Facts
    Luxury star rating: 3
    Guests #: 20
    Crew #: 5
    Ice Class:
    Speed: 7
    Refurbished:
    Technical Specs
    Year built:
    Length: 46m
    Width: 6
    Draft:
    Tonnage: 300
    Registry: Netherlands
    Elec Outlets: 220V / 2 Round Pin
Check Voyage Dates, Pricing and Availability

Twin Shared Inside

29 Aug 2018 - 09 Sep 2018
USD 4,600pp
USD 4,600pp