ultramarine spitsbergen polar bear cruise

Spitsbergen Photography: In Search of Polar Bears

  • Overview

    EARLY BIRD OFFER: Save 15-20% OFF + 10% When paid in full by 15 JUN 2020.


    This unique 13-day voyage invites guests to embrace a true expeditionary spirit: rather than follow a set itinerary, together we’ll allow our search for polar bears and other wildlife to determine our route and shore landings in the pristine Norwegian Arctic. You’ll be experiencing this once-in-a-lifetime journey aboard our game-changing new expedition vessel, Ultramarine, which is equipped with 20 quick-launching Zodiacs, luxurious onboard amenities and the biggest portfolio of adventure options in the Polar Regions.

    Cruising along the coast, ice edge and inner fjords of Spitsbergen, you’ll be immersed in the natural wonders of the land of the midnight sun as we pursue our quest to photograph arctic wildlife: the polar bear as it prowls the edges of the pack ice on its perpetual hunt for food; the walrus with its long tusks and distinctive whiskers; cliff-dwelling Arctic birds in the thousands; and small herds of reindeer loping across the colorful tundra. Plus, there will be snow-topped mountains, massive glacier fronts, deep-walled fjords, and vast swaths of untouched tundra waiting to be photographed. Exploring this awe-inspiring region never ceases to impress visitors with its raw beauty.

    IMPORTANT VOYAGE INFORMATION: This voyage has a mandatory charter flight component with an additional cost of AU$1,800 per person.

    Duration: 14 days
    Passengers: 199 passengers
    Embarkation Point: Oslo, Norway
    Disembarkation Point: Oslo, Norway
    Physical rating: Soft Adventure
    Fly/Cruise: Mandatory extra flight
    Single Supplement: 1.7x - 2.0x twin rate or share options
  • Itinerary
    • Day 1 - Oslo, Norway | Arrival Day

      Your Arctic voyage begins in Oslo, Norway’s vibrant capital city. If you arrive early, there are many museums, restaurants and green spaces to keep you busy before retiring at your included airport hotel.

    • Day 2 - Longyearbyen, Spitsbergen | Embarkation day

      This morning, the group will transfer to the airport and board our private charter flight to Longyearbyen, Spitsbergen’s largest settlement, where you’ll have some time to explore before embarkation. As your ship sets sail, enjoy great vistas of the mountainous landscape that serves as a backdrop for this historic town.

    • Day 3/13 - Photographing Spitsbergen

      Spitsbergen is graced with an unspoiled beauty that’s just waiting to be discovered. On this one-of-a-kind cruise, you’ll sail along the west coast of this magical island, exploring the coastal fjords and smaller, outlying islands. Each day will be a surprise, treating you to spectacular new sightings and experiences.

      Every expedition is unique, depending on the weather and ice conditions, but we do hope to visit a few of our favorite landing sites, which will be chosen as much for their optimal wildlife-viewing opportunities as for their stunning scenery, historical significance and hiking activities. With no itinerary (unusual amongst polar cruises), our main goal will be to sail in a constant search for polar bears on the prowl. This means we may not move the ship every day as we do on regular voyages, especially if we find abundant wildlife in one place. Like true explorers, we’ll let the wildlife and pack ice—not a set schedule—guide our route! Our small expedition ship allows us to navigate shallower waters and tighter spaces, so we expect to explore the more hard-to-reach areas frequented by the elusive polar bear.

      Presentations by on-board experts will prepare you for the adventures that await, and with continuous daylight during this time of year, photo ops abound. You’ll have ample time to linger and photograph any bears we find hunting on the ice edge, but they’re not the only wildlife we hope to encounter. The food-rich waters attract walrus, whales and seabirds, so you’ll want to keep your binoculars nearby while cruising. Arctic fox and the indigenous Svalbard reindeer may also be spotted on Zodiac excursions to shore.

      A haven for present-day explorers, Spitsbergen and the surrounding area offer unforgettable polar experiences that will keep you and your camera active for the duration of the expedition. Although 60 percent of the landscape is covered in glaciers and much of the terrain is mountainous, Spitsbergen (which means “pointed mountains”) surprises visitors with stretches of colorful tundra that burst with wildflowers in summer. Optional hiking activities get you up close—though never obtrusively—to the abundant wildlife. At day’s end, you’ll have plenty of prized photographs and exciting stories to share with your shipmates.

    • Day 14 - Longyearbyen, Spitsbergen | Disembarkation day & Fly to Oslo

      The time to say goodbye has come. Your adventure ends as it began, in the frontier-style settlement of Longyearbyen. From here, we’ll transfer you to the airport for your return group charter flight 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

    Paddling Excursion

    If you’re interested in kayaking and would like to try something less in depth than Sea Kayaking, you can still enjoy the benefits of adding an on-water experience to your expedition with a Paddling Excursion. Sign up for a onetime paddle on our sit-on-top kayaks, which are stable and unencumbered— perfect for anyone with little to no kayak experience. Expert guides take rotating groups of passengers on calm days to connect with the sea.

    AUD$ 280 per person

    Mandatory Transfer Package: Spitsbergen

    MANDATORY TRANSFER PACKAGE INCLUDES: Spitsbergen
    - One night’s pre-expedition hotel night at Oslo airport hotel, with breakfast
    - Charter flight from Oslo to Longyearbyen
    - Arrival and departure transfers in Longyearbyen
    - Charter flight from Longyearbyen to Oslo

    AUD$ 1,200 per person

    Kayaking

    Kayaking is probably one of the most intimate and inspiring ways you can explore the rugged coastlines and calm bays of the Polar regions.

    Kayaking in the Polar Regions is highly weather-dependent, however we guarantee at least one outing throughout your voyage, but your kayak guides will take you out as many times as possible throughout your voyage.

    AUD$ 955 per person

    Hiking

    There are options on most excursions for shorter walks, often to take advantage of excellent lookouts, that don’t require hiking boots and other equipment. Hiking participation is optional and your Expedition Team will advise you of what you can expect prior to each excursion.

    Included

    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

    Expedition Gear

    Comfortable expedition boots and a high quality expedition parka, specifically designed for the polar regions.

    Transfers

    Transfers are included on your embarkation and disembarkation days, as well as the day prior to embarkation from the airport to your hotel, should you arrive early

    Inclusions / Exclusions

    Included in your Expedition

    - Emergency evacuation insurance up to USD$500,000
    - Comprehensive pre-departure information
    - All shipboard accommodation and meals
    - Transfers on embarkation and disembarkation day
    - 000 per person
    - Service taxes and port charges
    - Photographic journal of your expedition
    - All shore excursions and lectures in the itinerary

    Not included in your Expedition

    - Additional overnight accommodation
    - Gratuities
    - Phone & Internet charges
    - Bar charges
    - Laundry charges
    - Mandatory waterproof gear not provided
    - Baggage / cancellation / interruption and medical travel insurance
    - Government arrival & departure taxes
    - Passport & Visa expenses
    - International airfare
  • Map
    Screen shot 2017 06 28 at 1.54.33 pm
  • Gallery
  • Vessel

    One of the newest ships in the polar fleet, Ultramarine, is designed to go beyond the familiar in polar exploration, to discover new places, and to immerse you in the best the region has to offer.

    Equipped with two twin-engine helicopters, Ultramarine offers the most robust portfolio of adventure activities in the industry, the most spacious suites in its category, breathtaking public spaces, and more outdoor wildlife viewing spaces than other expedition ships its size. It also features an innovative mix of sustainability features that exceed all industry standards.

    With all this and more, Ultramarine is set to deliver the ultimate polar expedition experience.

    Features & Facilities
    Key Facts
    Luxury star rating: 5
    Guests #: 199
    Crew #: 140
    Ice Class: PC6
    Speed: 16
    Refurbished:
    Technical Specs
    Year built: 2021
    Length: 128m
    Width: 22
    Draft: 5
    Tonnage: 13500
    Registry:
    Elec Outlets:
Check Voyage Dates, Pricing and Availability
All available dates
Ready to book your expedition?

We understand that the trip of a lifetime takes planning, so we make the financial commitments easy to manage.

  • Confirm your booking today with just AUD$ 1,000 per passenger.
  • Pay your 25% deposit 5 day later.
  • Final payment due 120 days prior to departure.
ultramarine antarctica explorer triple cabin

Explorer Triple

26 May 2021 - 08 Jun 2021
Located on Deck 3, and approximately 285 sq. ft. (26.5 m2). This suite is perfect for guests traveling solo who want to share their experience with other like-minded travelers of the same gender, or for groups of three traveling together. Featuring three separate single beds, and amenities for each of the three guests. Features: three single beds (two of which can be combined into a double bed), sitting area, picture window, desk, refrigerator, TV, private bathroom with shower and heated floors
AUD$ 16,600pp
AUD$ 14,940pp
ultramarine antarctica explorer suite cabin

Explorer Suite

26 May 2021 - 08 Jun 2021
Located on Deck 3, and approximately 285 sq. ft. (26.5 m2). These suites are perfect for people traveling together or solo guests looking to share with like-minded individuals. This suite maximizes interior living space while still offering guests the opportunity to stay connected to the outdoors. Our entry-level twin suites are the largest available on a ship of this class. Features: one double or two single beds, sitting area with sofa bed, picture window, desk, refrigerator, TV, private bathroom with shower and heated floors.
AUD$ 21,600pp
AUD$ 19,440pp
Book now btn
Book Now
ultramarine antarctica solo panoroma cabin

Solo Panorama

26 May 2021 - 08 Jun 2021
Located on Deck 6, and approximately 132 sq. ft. (12.3 m2). This suite is perfect for solo guests who appreciate privacy and want to wake up to sweeping views from the comfort of their bed. These are the only solo suites with floor-to-ceiling windows available onboard any ship in its class. Features: single bed, floor-to-ceiling window, desk, refrigerator, TV, private bathroom with shower and heated floors
AUD$ 23,100pp
AUD$ 20,790pp
ultramarine antarctica balcony suite cabin

Balcony Suite

26 May 2021 - 08 Jun 2021
Located on Decks 4 and 6, with approximately 226 sq. ft. (21 m2) of indoor living space, and a 52 sq. ft. (4.8 m2) balcony, this entry-level balcony suite is one of the largest available on a ship of this class. This suite is perfect for guests who are looking for both indoor and outdoor living spaces. There are four connecting suites in this category, making this an excellent option for families or groups wanting to stay connected to each other during their expedition. Features: one double or two single beds, sitting area with sofa bed, private balcony, desk, refrigerator, TV, private bathroom with shower and heated floors.
AUD$ 23,800pp
AUD$ 21,420pp
Book now btn
Book Now
ultramarine antarctica deluxe balcony suite cabin

Deluxe Balcony Suite

26 May 2021 - 08 Jun 2021
Located on Decks 4 and 6, with approximately 299 sq. ft. (27.8 m2) of indoor living space, and a 70 sq. ft. (6.5 m2) balcony. This suite is perfect for guests wanting a larger living space, full bathroom, and a substantial balcony. Deluxe Balcony Suites are the first suite type to offer additional privacy in the bathroom with an enclosed toilet, a full bath and shower to make it easier for guests to get ready together in the morning. Features: one double or two single beds, sitting area with sofa bed, private balcony, desk, refrigerator, TV, private bathroom with shower, bathtub and heated floors.
AUD$ 28,100pp
AUD$ 25,290pp
ultramarine antarctica terrace suite cabin

Terrace Suite

26 May 2021 - 08 Jun 2021
Located on Deck 6, with approximately 350 sq. ft. (32.5 m2) of indoor living space, and a 100 sq. ft. (9.3 m2) balcony. This suite is perfect for guests wanting generous interiors with a wide layout and the largest balconies on the ship. Centrally located on Deck 6, guests will enjoy minimal movement and motion from the comfort of these suites. Features: one double or two single beds, sitting area with sofa bed, private extra-wide balcony, desk, refrigerator, TV, private bathroom with shower, bathtub and heated floors.
AUD$ 29,600pp
AUD$ 26,640pp
ultramarine antarctica penthouse suite cabin

Penthouse Suite

26 May 2021 - 08 Jun 2021
The only suite category to be located on Deck 7, with approximately 369 sq. ft. (34.3 m2) of indoor living space, and a 67 sq. ft. (6.2 m2) balcony. This suite is perfect for guests wanting to wake up to unobstructed polar views from the warmth and comfort of their bed onboard the ship. These suites offer the best of everything—views, spacious interiors, full bathrooms and generous balcony sizes—as well as easy access to the wellness centre. Features: one double or two single beds, sitting area with sofa bed, private balcony, desk, refrigerator, TV, private bathroom with shower, bathtub and heated floors.
AUD$ 31,700pp
AUD$ 28,530pp
Book now btn
Book Now
ultramarine antarctica owner's suite cabin

Owner's Suite

26 May 2021 - 08 Jun 2021
Located on Deck 6, with approximately 446 sq. ft. (41.4 m2) of indoor living space and a 46.3 sq. ft. (4.3 m2) balcony. This suite is perfect for guests who want it all. A large, luxurious suite featuring a private bedroom, full bathroom, powder room, and two separate living spaces. This suite is perfect for families or couples who want all the comforts of home onboard the ship. Features: one double or two single beds in a private bedroom with walk-in closet, sitting area with sofa bed and additional closet, private balcony, desk, refrigerator, TV, private bathroom with shower, bathtub and heated floors and separate powder room.
AUD$ 38,900pp
AUD$ 35,010pp
ultramarine antarctica ultra suite cabin

Ultra Suite

26 May 2021 - 08 Jun 2021
Located on Deck 6, with approximately 563 sq. ft. (52.3m2) of interior living space, and a 46 sq. ft. (4.3 m2) balcony. This suite is perfect for guests who want to travel without compromise. Our largest and most luxurious suite features the most sleeping, entertainment and storage space onboard the ship. It is perfect for families or travelers who want all the comforts of home onboard the ship. Features: one double or two single beds in a private bedroom with walk-in closet, sitting area with sofa bed and additional walk-in hallway closet, private balcony, desk, refrigerator, TV, private bathroom with shower, bathtub and heated floors and separate powder room.
AUD$ 43,200pp
AUD$ 38,880pp