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Around Spitsbergen - In the realm of the Polar Bear | Hondius

10 Days
From USD 5,400

Trip Code: ACTHSAS

DIFFICULTY RATING: 2 (light adventure)

Start: Longyearbyen, Svalbard

Finish: Longyearbyen, Svalbard

SHIP: Hondius

DestinationDestination

Svalbard

DestinationDeparture Date

24/06/2024, 03/07/2024, 12/07/2024, 21/07/2024

MealsMeals

All Meals Onboard the Ship

TransportTransport

Group Transfers On Arrival, Embarkation & Disembarkation (*only for those passengers on the group flights)

TransportAccommodation

Cabin on board ship



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Included SightseeingIncluded Sightseeing

Daily arctic excursions, zodiac cruising, onboard expert lectures & briefings by the experienced expedition team

 

NOTE: Itinerary is subject to change depending on weather & ice conditions 

OVERVIEW

A voyage around Spitsbergen, where you have chances to see the King of the Arctic, Walrus, Reindeer, various bird species and surprisingly beautiful flora. Near the mouth of Liefdefjorden, we will go ashore for a walk on the tundra of Reindyrsflya. Sailing into Liefdefjorden, we will cruise near the face of the impressive Monaco Glacier. The waters of the glacier front are a favourite feeding spot for thousands of Kittiwakes and occasionally Polar Bear are seen on the glacier.

ITINERARY

Embark in 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.

Cruise along the 14th of July Glacier

Heading north along the west coast, we arrive by morning in Krossfjorden, where we board the Zodiacs for a cruise along the sculpted front of the 14th of July Glacier. On the green slopes near the glacier, a colourful variety of flowers bloom, while large numbers of Kittiwake and Brünnich’s Guillemot nest on the nearby cliffs. There is also a good chance of spotting Arctic Fox, who patrol the base of the cliffs in case a chick falls from its nest, and Bearded Seal, who cruise this fjord. In the afternoon we sail to Ny Ålesund, the world’s most northerly settlement.

Once a mining village - served by the world’s most northerly railway, which can still be seen - Ny Ålesund is now a research centre. Close to the village is a breeding ground for Barnacle Goose, Pink-footed Goose and Arctic Tern. Visitors interested in the history of Arctic exploration will want to walk to the anchoring mast used by Amundsen and Nobile, in the airship Norge in 1926 and Nobile in the airship Italia in 1928, before their flights to the North Pole.

Reindyrsflya & Monaco Glacier

Near the mouth of Liefdefjorden, we will go ashore for a walk on the tundra of Reindyrsflya. Sailing into Liefdefjorden, we will cruise near the face of the impressive Monaco Glacier. The waters of the glacier front are a favourite feeding spot for thousands of Kittiwakes and occasionally Polar Bear are seen on the glacier.

Northernmost landing at Phippsøya - Day 4 & 5

We have our northernmost landing at Phippsøya, in the Seven Islands north of Nordaustlandet. Here we will be at 81 degrees north, just 540 miles from the geographic North Pole. Polar Bear inhabit this region, along with Walrus and Ivory Gull. We may sit for several hours in the pack ice, taking in our spectacular surroundings with their own wildlife. When the edge of the sea-ice is tens of miles north of the Seven Islands (mostly in August) we will spend a second day to get to and in the sea ice. Alternatively (mostly in July) we turn to Sorgfjord where we may find a herd of Walrus not far from the graves of 17th century whalers. On a nature walk, we may encounter families of Ptarmigans. The opposite side of the fjord is also a beautiful area for an excursion.

The polar desert of Nordaustlandet

Today we will sail into Hinlopen Strait, home to Bearded Seal, Ringed Seal, Polar Bear, and Ivory Gull. We’ll navigate the ice floes of Lomfjordshalvøya in our zodiacs and explore the bird cliffs of Alkefjellet with thousands of Brünnich’s Guillemot. On the east side of Hinlopen Strait, we’ll attempt a landing at Augustabukta on Nordaustlandet, home to reindeer, Pink-footed Goose, breeding Ivory Gull, and Walrus. Near Torrelneset, we will explore the polar desert of Nordaustlandet, next to the world’s third largest ice cap, which meets the sea nearby. We will walk along beautiful coastline covered in smooth rocks, sculpted by the surf over thousands of years. We may encounter Walrus along the way.

Barentsøya visit and walk across the tundra

In Freemansundet we plan to land at Sundneset on the island of Barentsøya to visit an old trapper's hut and then take a brisk walk across the tundra in search of Spitsbergen Reindeer and Barnacle Goose. Later we cruise south to Diskobukta on the west side of Edgeøya. After a Zodiac cruise through the shallow bay, we land on a beach littered with whale bones and tree trunks, which have drifted here from Siberia. We can also climb to the rim of a narrow gully which is inhabited by thousands of Kittiwake, together with Black Guillemot and piratical Glaucous Gull. During the breeding season, the base of the cliffs is patrolled by Arctic Fox and Polar Bear, especially females with young cubs, searching for young birds that have fallen from the nesting ledges.

Hornsund area

We start the day quietly cruising the side fjords of the spectacular Hornsund area of southern Spitsbergen, enjoying the scenery of towering mountain peaks. Hornsundtind rises to 1,431m, while Bautaen shows why early Dutch explorers gave the name ‘Spitsbergen’ - pointed mountains - to the island. There are also 14 magnificent glaciers in the area and very good chances of encounters with seals and Polar Bear.

Bell Sund’s flora, fauna, &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.

Disembark 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.

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Hondius

Hondius

Hondius offers the best of both worlds - Hotel comfort and expedition class. It is of the few vessels to be built to class “LR PC6”, meeting the latest and highest demands of Lloyd’s Register for “Polar Class 6” vessels, the highest Polar Class notation for ice-strengthened vessels. The vessel will also fully comply with the mandatory requirements of the Polar code, adopted by the International Maritime Organization (IMO), for safe ship operation and the protection of the Polar environment.

Hondius is one of the strongest ice-strengthened vessel in the Polar Regions and is equipped with stabilizers, and very suitable for advanced, innovative exploratory quality voyages in the Arctic and Antarctic Regions.

The expert expedition team onboard will do their best to ensue you see a range of wildlife and terrain when the opportunities present themselves. You will have 70 crew and staff members (including expedition and hotel staff) at your service while on board, ensuring that what little time you do spend on the ship you will spend comfortably entertained.
 

The ship takes up to 170 passengers and offers a range of high quality accommodation, a large observation lounge and separate, dedicated lecture room. The vessel is elegantly designed, but has a distinctive informal and cozy atmosphere onboard. 

 

Ice Class: Length: 107.6 meters
Breadth: 17.6 metersMax
Draft: Cruising
Speed: 15 knots
Electricity: Passenger
Capacity:
174

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Accommodation

We believe that appropriate accommodation should add to the authentic travel experience, as well as providing utmost enjoyment. For that reason our accommodation is scrutinised by our staff on the ground frequently, ensuring the properties adhere to our high standards. This key will help you understand the levels of accommodation available on this tour.

Standard

Comfortable properties with dependable facilities and service.

Superior

Comfortable properties with dependable facilities and service.

Deluxe

Luxurious properties with impeccable facilities and service.

Pricing per person & date

Around Spitsbergen - In the realm of the Polar Bear | Hondius from USD 5,400
Departing Ending Duration
24 Jun 2024 03 Jul 2024 10
03 Jul 2024 12 Jul 2024 10
12 Jul 2024 21 Jul 2024 10
21 Jul 2024 30 Jul 2024 10

Important Information

  • INCLUSIONS

    All meals onboard including snacks, coffee and tea.
    Accommodation onboard the Hondius in booked cabin category
    Onboard lecture program from Expeditions Team and Naturalists
    All applicable shore excursions and Zodiac cruising (except paid adventure options with cost)
    Use of rubber boots & snowshoes
    Transfers and baggage handling between the airport, hotels and ship only for those passengers on the group flights to and from Longyearbyen.
    All port taxes
    All landing fees

     
     

    EXCLUSIONS

    International or internal flights unless specified
    Airport transfers, taxes and excess baggage charges unless specified
    Meals other than those specified in the pre-departure information
    Pre or post cruise travel expenses
    Visa (if applicable) and passport fees
    Travel insurance (compulsory)
    Fuel surcharge may be applied to all bookings
    Paid adventure options and all personal expenses
    Tobacco, alcoholic or beverages (other than coffee and tea)
    Miscellaneous extras
    Laundry and communication charges on board
    Gratuities for Expedition team and crew (recommended US$15 per person per day)

  • 2 (light adventure)
  • Available on request. Subject to availability. Contact us for more details.

  • Prices are based on per person, twin share* (unless otherwise stated for triple/quad cabins) 

    Prices are correct at time of publishing but are subject to change at any time. 

    Itinerary is subject to change depending on weather and ice conditions

  • Departure date,  fuel surcharges, cabin category, currency fluctuations, seasonality and availability.