June - July
During this voyage we’ll attempt a circumnavigation of Spitsbergen. The island offers highly-coveted opportunities to view polar bears and walrus, who feed in the food-rich icy waters around the island. Whales and seabirds will also entertain you during the sailing portions of the expedition, and on Zodiac excursions, you may catch a glimpse of reindeer or fox.
- Encounter iconic arctic wildlife, such as polar bears, walrus and reindeer
- View numerous arctic bird species, like puffins, arctic terns and purple sandpipers
- Take advantage of continuous daylight
- Explore glaciers, fjords, icebergs and more with included Zodiac cruising
- Immerse yourself in the icy realm of the Arctic with optional kayaking adventures
DAY 1 Embarkation Day in Longyearbyen, Norway.
Your Spitsbergen arctic voyage begins when you board your ship in Longyearbyen, the island’s largest settlement. Enjoy your first view of the island’s rugged, glacier-topped mountains, rising majestically from icy waters.
Days 2 to 12 Circumnavigating Spitsbergen.
Expect a new adventure every day as we begin our circumnavigation by heading north and around the island of Spitsbergen, exploring smaller, outlying islands. The variety of incredible wildlife and geological formations found here is astounding. We plan to circumnavigate the island of Spitsbergen, but if conditions are favorable, we will also attempt a circumnavigation of the whole Svalbard archipelago. Every expedition will be different, depending on the weather and ice, but we do hope to visit a few of our favorite landing sites, including the 14th of July Glacier, Ny London, Phippsøya, Alkefjellet and the seldom-visited Kvitøya.
The names may seem strange to you, but each has its own unique appeal. For birders, the 14th of July Glacier is home to purple sandpipers, common eiders, barnacle geese and arctic terns, while Alkefjellet is home to nesting Brünnich’s guillemots (thick-billed murres).
If you’re looking for confirmation that reindeer are real, then you’ll want to have your camera ready for visits to sites like Ny London, Sundneset and Alkhornet. As for the largest land carnivore in the world, searching for polar bears is a constant activity for our Expedition Team. Phippsøya and Isbukta are two of the bears’ preferred places for hunting, which translates into great potential for you to capture them in action.
A big part of appreciating Spitsbergen comes from understanding the culture—not just how people live today, but also how this land was first explored. Whaling was a key industry, and you will see old blubber ovens from the 16th century, plus other evidence of whaling at landing sites such as Smeerenburg. Colorful tundra meadows are complemented by glaciers, and sometimes there is a rare chance to spot beluga whales.
Day 13 Depart Longyearbyen
Your adventure ends in the frontier-style settlement of Longyearbyen. From here, we’ll transfer you to the airport for your flight home.
Our ships will be your home away from home during your expedition. The passionate Expedition Team and crew aboard this ship can’t wait to show you around and take you to places most people only dream about. Every day presents a new adventure. An early wake-up call may signal the sighting of nearby whales, while an afternoon Zodiac cruise may present you with the intense blues of passing icebergs.
ABOUT THE OCEAN ADVENTURER
The Ocean Adventurer is a comfortable vessel with spacious cabins, which all have private bathroom facilities and exterior views. Designed to carry travelers in comfort to the most remote corners of the world,
Ocean Adventurer was built in 1976, and underwent extensive upgrades
in 2017. This multi-million dollar investment included renovations to the interior of the ship, signi cant technical upgrades, and the addition of a new cabin category, the Owner’s Suites. The refurbishment gave the ship new bathrooms in every cabin, and upgrades to the Lounge, Dining Room, gym, and suites. Technical enhancements – including two new engines, generators, gear boxes, drive systems, and re-bladed propellers – resulted in increased fuel e ciency, and a minimized carbon footprint.
This cli is a seabird center, where Brünnich’s guillemots (thick-billed murres) raise their young. An estimated 100,000 breeding pairs reside in the basalt cli s. The birds do not build nests; rather, they lay eggs on the bare ledge.
This bay on the west shore of Edgeøya a ords a landing site with a box canyon where black-legged kittiwakes raise their young. Arctic foxes have been seen combing the canyon oor to feed on scraps that have fallen from the nests above. Watch for the bones of ancient bowhead whales on the canyon oor— evidence that the shoreline has changed over millennia.
On the eastern shore of the southern tip of Svalbard is Ice Bay. Sabine’s gulls, skuas and bearded seals inhabit the bay. Polar bears are known to patrol the area as well.
It’s an island! Both nautical charts and topographical maps de ne Isispynten as a point of land, but we’ve proved them wrong. Receding glaciers have turned this point of land into an island.
KAPP LEE, EDGEØYA
This is a well-known walrus haul-out. The pink color of a walrus’s hide as it is exposed to the sun is caused by blood pumped to the skin’s surface to aid cooling, similar to that of a hippopotamus in Africa.
The western part of this island is only 61 miles (98 km) from Victoria Island in Franz Josef Land, which is part of the Russian Arctic. This remote outpost is actually closer to the Russian Arctic than it is to Nordaustlandet (73 miles/117 km) and is located on the same longitude as Cairo, Egypt.
In 1906, Prince Albert I of Monaco visited Lilliehöök Glacier to conduct scienti c investigations. His great-great- grandson, Albert II, visited the glacier a hundred years later as part of a scienti c investigation, this time to further our understanding of the arctic clam, a species that lives for more than a century. The growth rings of a single clam’s shell contain evidence of the chemicals encountered by the clam. Scientists can determine the variations of the water’s temperature and pollutant content by studying the shell.
Eighteen hundred people inhabit the administrative capital of Svalbard,
which is situated on the southern side of Advent ord. The settlement was founded in 1905 by John Munroe Longer, the majority owner of the Arctic Coal Company of Boston.
This island is designated as a protected sanctuary for walrus.
Prince Albert I of Monaco, a pioneer of oceanography, led an expedition to Svalbard in 1906. His team used sophisticated photographic techniques to understand the shape and position of several glacier fronts. Monaco Glacier honors the expedition, the prince and the principality over which he reigned.
PHIPPSØYA AND MARTENSØYA, SEVEN ISLANDS
This small archipelago is the northernmost land in Svalbard. Englishmen left their mark during a survey of the islands in the 1780s. The party named the islands after themselves, with the smallest and least signi cant island being named Nelsonøya, after the lowly midshipman who was promoted over the years to the rank and title of Vice Admiral Horatio Lord Nelson!
Payment Terms & Conditions
To guarantee your reservation we require an initial deposit. * Initial deposit NON-REFUNDABLE.
YOUR SPITSBERGEN EXPEDITION INCLUDES
- Shipboard accommodation withdaily housekeeping
- All meals, snacks, soft drinks and juices on board
- Beer and wine during dinner
- All shore landings per the daily program
- Leadership throughout the voyage by our experienced Expedition Leader
- All Zodiac transfers and cruising per the daily program
- Formal and informal presentations by our Expedition Team and special guests as scheduled
- Photographic journal documenting the expedition
- Waterproof expedition boots on loan for shore landings
- O cial Quark Expeditions® parka to keep
- Co ee, tea and cocoa available around the clock
- Hair dryer and bathrobe in every cabin
- Comprehensive onboard materials,
including a map and an informative Arctic Reader
• All miscellaneous service taxes and port charges throughout the program
• All luggage handling aboard the ship
• All gratuities
• Emergency evacuation insurance to a maximum bene t of US$500,000 per person
• Arrival transfer from Longyearbyen airport to your hotel if you arrive one day prior to embarkation
• Transfer from your hotel or Longyearbyen airport to the ship on embarkation day
• Group transfer from the ship to Longyearbyen airport or a designated drop-o location downtown on disembarkation day
THIS EXPEDITION EXCLUDES
• International airfare
• Passport and visa expenses
• Government arrival and departure taxes not mentioned above
• Meals ashore unless otherwise specified
• Baggage, cancellation, interruption and medical travel insurance— strongly recommended
• Excess-baggage fees on international flights
• Mandatory waterproof pants for Zodiac cruising, or any other gear not mentioned
• Laundry, bar, beverage and other personal charges unless specfied
• Phone and Internet charges
• Additional overnight accommodation
• Optional kayaking activities
WHAT TO BRING! Packing for the polar regions doesn’t have to be daunting, and to make it easier for you, all Quark voyages include an expedition parka to keep, and a loan of appropriate polar footwear. Additional suggested items include:
FOR SHORE LANDINGS
Base layers (wool, synthetic or a blend)
Mid-layer warm/ eece top
Mid-layer warm/ eece pant
Wool and synthetic socks (3 to 4 pairs)
Neck warmer or balaclava
Warm hat that covers ears
Sunglasses with UV protection
Waterproof, lightweight backpack or dry sack
Swimsuit (for the polar plunge!)
Camera with extra batteries
Extra memory cards
Earplugs (in case of noisy cabinmates)
Eye masks for sleeping
Seasickness, indigestion, headache or other medicine
FOR ON BOARD
Comfortable casual clothing (pants/jeans, shirts, sweaters)
Lighter shirts (in case the ship gets warm)
Comfortable non-slip close-toed unheeled shoes
Embarkation Day in Longyearbyen, Norway