Home » M/V Plancius: North Spitsbergen – 82 Degrees North
Start your North Spitsbergen cruise with a trek around historic Longyearben, then join our expedition to the north of the island to take in the fantastically beautiful landscapes, the thousands of seabirds, and of course the star of the show, the polar bear.
Duration: 8 Days
Arrive in Longyearbyen, the administrative capital of the Spitsbergen archipelago of which West Spitsbergen is the largest island. Before embarking there is an opportunity to stroll around this former mining town, whose parish church and Polar Museum are well worth visiting. In the surrounding area of Longyearbyen, more than 100 species of plants have been recorded. In the early evening the ship will sail out of Isfjorden, where in the mouth of the fjord we may see our first Minke Whale.
Sailing to Raudfjorden, on the north coast of Spitsbergen, you take in an expansive fjord spilling with glaciers – and maybe even visited by ringed and bearded seals. The cliffs and shoreline of this fjord also support thriving seabird colonies, rich vegetation, and the possibility of polar bears. In the evening you sail by the island of Moffen, where you can find a large herd of walruses.
Depending on the weather, you could sail into Liefdefjorden and cruise within sight of the 5-kilometer-long (3.1 miles) face of the precipitous Monaco Glacier. The waters in front of this glacier are a favorite feeding spot for thousands of kittiwakes, and the base of the ice is a popular polar bear hunting ground. If ice conditions prevent sailing here early in the season, an alternate route along the west coast of Spitsbergen can be implemented.
You next sail through Beverleysundet, formerly navigated by the Swedish-Russian Arc-of-Meridian Expedition in 1898. From here you push east along Scoresby Island into Rijpfjord, where the German Wehrmacht operated the weather station Haudegen (now off-limits) until September 1945. The aim in Zorgdragerfjord is to have one group walk the eastern shore while another walks the north side of Arkvatnet, through Havsuldalen to the entrance of Duvefjorden.
Reaching Phippsøya, in the Seven Islands north of Nordaustlandet, you’re now at 80° north and just 870 km (540 miles) from the geographic North Pole. Polar bears and walruses inhabit this region. In the afternoon you venture to your northernmost point, near the 82nd parallel. While retracing your route west, keep watch for polar bears and elusive Greenland (bowhead) whales.
About 40 nautical miles west of Spitsbergen, you sail the edge of the continental shelf. Here fin whales forage during the summer in the upwelling zones (where cold, nutrient-rich water wells up from below the sea’s surface) that run along the Spitsbergen banks. At the mouth of Kongsfjorden, you have a good chance of sighting minke whales.
Walruses sometimes haul out in Forlandsundet, your next stop – though this late in the season, they may have already departed. Alternately, you might sail into St. Johns Fjord or south to the mouth of Isfjorden, landing at Alkhornet. Seabirds nest on these cliffs, Arctic foxes search below for fallen eggs and chicks, and reindeer graze the sparse vegetation. You arrive in Longyearbyen later that night.
We disembark in Longyearbyen, the administrative centre of Spitsbergen, for the flights south to Oslo and onward home.
|24 Aug 2020 - 31 Aug 2020||$6308 AUD pp|
|Quadruple Porthole Cabin||$6308 AUD pp||Contact us|
|Twin Porthole Cabin||$8769 AUD pp||Contact us|
|Twin Window Cabin||$9538 AUD pp||Contact us|
|Twin Deluxe Cabin||$10154 AUD pp||Contact us|
|Superior Cabin||$11462 AUD pp||Contact us|
Two upper and two lower berths, one porthole, private shower and toilet, desk and chair, flatscreen TV, telephone and WiFi (supplemented), hair-dryer and ample storage space.
One upper and two lower berths, one porthole, private shower and toilet, desk and chair, flatscreen TV, telephone and WiFi (supplemented), hair-dryer and ample storage space.
Two lower berths, one porthole, private shower and toilet, desk and chair, flatscreen TV, telephone and WiFi (supplemented), hair-dryer and ample storage space.
Two lower berths, one window, private shower and toilet, desk and chair, flatscreen TV, telephone and WiFi (supplemented), hair-dryer and ample storage space.
Two lower berths, two windows, private shower and toilet, desk and chair, flatscreen TV, telephone and WiFi (supplemented), hair-dryer and ample storage space.
*corner cabins which are slightly more spacious than the normal twin porthole/window cabins
One double bed, one sofa bed, two windows, private shower and toilet, desk and chair, flatscreen TV, telephone and Wifi (supplemented), refrigerator, coffee and tea maker, hair-dryer and ample storage space.
*On Spitsbergen voyages: Transfers and baggage handling between the airport, hotels and ship are included only for those passengers on the group flights to and from Longyearbyen.