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Originally built in 2009 and rebuilt in 2016, the MS Spitsbergen is named after the largest island of the Svalbard archipelago. The ship is built to high technical standards, and is both modern and environmentally progressive. Her size and manoeuvrability mean that she is ideally suited to cruising Polar waters. Featuring comfortable public areas and cabins, on board facilities include a panoramic lounge and deck, bars both inside and outside, bistro and dining room, Wi-Fi, fitness room, hot tub and sauna as well as a shop and guest launderette. Cabins and suites all feature private bathrooms and range from the most luxurious Expedition Suites located on the upper deck, to the Polar cabins.



Length: 100.54m

Breadth: 18m

Speed: 14.5 knots

Passengers: 335 in Norway, 243 in international sailings

Ice Class: IC

Ship Region:Antarctica

The MS Spitsbergen comply with all safety requirements and is suitable for traveling in icy waters. Upon arrival on board all passengers will be instructed in safety procedures and the use and location of the safety equipment. There is a safety plan situated on the inside of each cabin door.




The health and safety of our guests, employees and the communities we visit are our highest priority. We’ve partnered with experts in health and safety to design new protocols and procedures to be safer together as we restart our expedition operations. We will continuously evaluate our health and safety procedures and protocols and update the information on this page, specific measures may vary per sailing, local regulations, the latest medical and scientific advice as well as the conditions at the time of sailing.

Health and Safety on Board

Face Masks: Currently, you’re required to wear a face mask in public areas indoors, except when eating and drinking. Outside on deck, face masks may be removed if physical distancing is possible. Policies may vary by destination, in line with local requirements.

Physical Distancing: We plan to sail with a reduced passenger capacity to enable greater physical distancing onboard. We have also reduced the guest capacities of public spaces like our restaurants and lecture halls so that all guests can enjoy our services and activities comfortably. 

Cleaning and Hygiene: All public spaces are regularly cleaned and disinfected throughout the day, and hand sanitiser is available throughout the ship. We have increased the frequency of all cleaning procedures, especially for high touch areas. Guest cabins are cleaned and disinfected daily. Our housekeeping staff are equipped with Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and are trained in new methods to reduce the risk of COVID-19. 

Expeditions and Lectures: We’ve introduced enhanced cleaning and disinfection measures for public areas such as our Science Center. Hand sanitiser will be available and touch points regularly cleaned. Lecture hall seating capacities have been adjusted to allow for physical distancing. On some ships, we’ll offer streamed lectures, enabling you to enjoy them in your cabin.

Dining: We’re reducing seating capacity and extending opening hours in our restaurants to facilitate increased distances between tables. Our new reservation system for restaurants minimises wait times. At restaurant entrances, guests can expect hand sanitiser dispensers and a temperature check with a contactless temperature scanner. We have adapted menus and services to offer individual dishes rather than self-service buffets. We also provide a “takeaway service” for guests who wish to dine in their cabin. 

Medical Services: Our expedition ships feature a small onboard hospital available at all hours. Every ship has a medical team with a doctor and at least one nurse, supported 24/7 by dedicated land-based experts. Our medical staff can conduct a rapid COVID-19 test onboard and are trained in outbreak prevention and response.

Exploring on Shore: We’ll follow all mandates from local governments and communities when exploring on land, adjusting our plans and procedures as needed. In some cases, this may mean some activities or independent exploration are restricted. 

At this time, we require guests to bring proof of a negative COVID-19 PCR test result no older than 72 hours.  

We also require a negative rapid test conducted during the embarkation process. The rapid test will be provided at embarkation. 

Specific requirements may vary by sailing, based on regional requirements, the latest scientific and medical advice, and the conditions at the time of sailing. 

You’ll be requested to self-isolate in your cabin and call reception immediately if you experience any symptoms of COVID-19. These include a new persistent cough, shortness of breath, difficulty breathing, fever or chills, a new loss of taste or smell, vomiting or diarrhoea. Our medical staff can conduct a rapid COVID-19 test onboard. If required, we’ll initiate the robust procedures we’ve put in place for outbreak prevention and response.

Yes, all guests are required to follow our embarkation requirements. 

These requirements may include testing, a mandatory health self-declaration form, and other screening procedures to reduce the risk of COVID-19. All our health and safety protocols and embarkation requirements will be adjusted according to the conditions at the time of each sailing. 

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