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About the Spitsbergen Circumnavigation Itinerary
Spitsbergen is the largest island of the Svalbard archipelago, and on this voyage we’ll attempt a circumnavigation of the island. Lying entirely within the Arctic Circle, Spitsbergen is rugged, wild, unspoiled—utterly unforgettable. When it comes to viewing arctic wildlife, Spitsbergen is known as one of the most prolific destinations. The island and surrounding area offers one of the best opportunities to view polar bears, and with luck you’ll be able to see the world’s largest carnivores in their natural habitat. Walrus populations love Spitsbergen as well, feeding in the food-rich icy waters around the island. Whales and seabirds will also entertain you during the sailing portions of the expedition, and you may catch a sighting of reindeer or fox when taking Zodiac excursions to shore.
Day 1: Embarkation in Longyearbyen
We arrive in Longyearbyen, the administrative capital of the Svalbard archipelago of which Spitsbergen is the largest island. Before embarking there is an opportunity to stroll around this former mining town, whose parish church and Svalbard 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 Whale.
Days 2 - 9: Exploring Spitsbergen
Depending on weather and ice, the Expedition Leader and Captain will decide on the best itinerary.
Day 10: Disembarkation
We disembark in Longyearbyen, the administrative centre of Spitsbergen, for the flights south to Oslo and onward home.
Welcome Aboard the Plancius
The Plancius was originally built as a hydrographic research vessel in the service of the Dutch government. In 2007, the current owner purchased her and since then she has undergone a total refit and refurbishment to prepare her for carrying passengers on polar expeditions. All of the cabins have outside views and are comfortable and well-appointed with private facilities and all lower beds (either twin or double). All cabins have ample storage facilities and a writing desk and chair, as well as a flat screen TV for viewing movies. The Plancius is equipped with state-of-the-art safety systems, including new radar, communication, and other navigation equipment, as well as the most modern fire and flood prevention systems.
- Passenger Capacity: 110 passengers max
- Staff & Crew: 45
- Ice class: 1D
- Length: 89 metres (267 feet)
- Breadth: 14.5 meters (43 feet)
- Max Draft: 4.5 metres (15 feet)
- Speed: 10-12 knots maximum
Cabins & Amenities
- All cabins have exterior views (porthole or window) and private facilities
- Library stocked with polar books
- Observation lounge / Bar
- Adventure options on most departures
- Leica Akademie Photo Workshop
- Single Supplement is 1.7 times the standard rate.
- Mandatory Emergency Evacuation insurance is required. Airfare is not included in these prices.
- Adventure options must be pre-booked and paid for prior to start of the trip. Space is subject to availability. Some activities require experience.
- Camping – $190 per night, max 30 people
- Kayaking – $465 per voyage, max 14 people
- Snowshoeing – no charge but sign-up required
- Photo Workshop – $420 per trip or Free during “Basecamp Plancius” and Whales, Wildlife and Photography voyage.
- Max 14 people. All photo workshops are powered by renowned Leica Akademie.
- All trips subject to possible fuel surcharge.
SHIP CAPACITY UPDATE: Starting with 2020 Arctic & 2020-2021 Antarctica Season, the ship capacity will be reduced to 108 passengers & no triple cabins will be available. We can accommodate three passengers traveling together in a Superior Cabin + a sofa bed.