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Svalbard, Jan Mayen, Iceland – Arctic Islands Exploration

Resort:Svalbard, Jan Mayen, Iceland - Arctic Islands Exploration
Operator: Hurtigruten
Destination: Svalbard
Price From: £5979.00

Overview

Welcome to true Arctic adventure. Island-hopping across the region, we sail above 80 N, to take you to the ice edge of the Arctic Ocean while circumnavigating Svalbard. Next, we head to the remote outpost of Jan Mayen before exploring the volcanic home of the sagas: Iceland. Enjoy excursions such as hiking, kayaking and traversing a glacier on this active and exciting voyage.

Itinerary

Day 1 Oslo/Longyearbyen

This Arctic voyage starts with an evening flight from Oslo. Norway’s capital is often called ‘The blue, the green and the city in between’ because of its location nestled between the fjord and the forest. Spend a day checking out the museums, parks and cutting-edge architecture, and relax in one of the many cafs or bars.
Then prepare to enter an entirely different world when you set foot in Longyearbyen after your flight. Amazingly, this town on the edge of the harsh wilderness is a modern oasis, with first-class facilities, charming architecture, an internationally renowned museum and several bars and restaurants all surrounded by untouched Arctic tundra.

Day 2 Longyearbyen, Svalbard

After an overnight stay in one of our hotels, you can join an exciting excursion in unique Longyearbyen and the surrounding area. Here, the Arctic environment dominates, but the town maintains a surprisingly cosmopolitan character. Longyearbyen is often called an antidote to modern-day life and today serves as a prime destination for adventure travelers. Enjoy this remarkable place before boarding MS Fram.

Day 3-4 North West Spitsbergen National Park

The North West Corner is scattered with islands, fjords and beaches. The ocean here can be full of drifting ice especially in the early season and the frozen landscape changes constantly. Due to strong winds and currents, the Captain monitors conditions closely before deciding where we can land or sail. This is why all our itineraries are flexible; we work with the elements, not against them, and safety is our first priority.
If we are able to land, thisarea is excellent for exploring Svalbards history. You will have the chance to see the remnants of ancient blubber ovens used to render whale oil.We might visit Kongsfjord, considered one of the most beautiful fjord areas in Spitsbergen, with mighty glaciers calving icebergs into the sea, framed by stunning mountain formations. On the shore of Kongfjord is the former mining settlement of Ny-lesund, now an international centre for research, with a picturesque mix of old and new buildings.
In the Magdalenafjorden and Gravneset areas, you may have the chance to actually swim and earn a rare arctic swimming certificate. There will also be exciting hiking and scenic kayaking opportunities, featuring the nearby Gully Glacier.
We may also get to see the enormous Monaco Glacier in Liefdefjord, and enjoy a chance to cruise in small boats.

Day 5-8 Eastern Svalbard Nature Reserves and South Spitsbergen National Park

Eastern Svalbard boasts the highest population of polar bears on the archipelago we have high hopes of seeing one on this journey!
If conditions allow, we will to sail to Isflakbukta on Phippsya, part of Sjuyane (Seven Islands), which are located at the far north of the Svalbard archipelago. Thousands upon thousands of seabirds mate here, while walrus dive for clams in the bays.
We also aim to cruise in Sorgfjord, which borders the North East Spitsbergen Nature Reserve, and was the site of a famous 17th-century battle between whalers. If the weather is favourable here, we can hike in beautiful Eolsneset or enjoy tender boat cruising in the Hinlopen Strait area.
Another part of our journey may be a visit to Torellneset, which is an excellent place to spot walruses sunning themselves on the flat beach.
We continue on to Edgeya, the third-largest island in the Svalbard archipelago. On its western shores, the landscape is largely un-glaciated, unlike most other places on the east side of Spitsbergen. Kapp Lee is a wonderful site where you will find cultural heritage from all eras of human exploration of Svalbard. We make our way to the southern cape and the southernmost tip of Spitsbergen, where Hornsund hosts a wonderfully varied landscape and geology. Ice being pushed into the fjord early in the season attracts polar bears that hunt on the floes, so with a bit of luck, we may spot some of these magnificent predators.

Day 9 At sea

As we start sail south, the Expedition team continue the lecture programme, covering topics related to the areas we sail, and the environmental challenges of the worlds oceans in a time of climate change. The expedition photographer will be available to show you the basics of photography. Of course, you will also have time to just enjoy being on board the ship.

Day 10 Jan Mayen

The Norwegian island of Jan Mayen is one of the most isolated places in the world. Located where the North American and Eurasian tectonic plates meet, the island is dominated by Beerenberg, the northernmost active volcano on earth.
Dutch whalers operated from Jan Mayen in the 16th century, but today only a Norwegian weather station accommodates a few brave individuals throughout the year. Visits to Jan Mayen are extremely rare, especially from tourists. As one of the few vessels operating in this area, MS Fram and her crew will attempt to make a landing on this most exotic Arctic island.

Day 11 At sea

A day at sea means you can join the lectures by the expedition team, spend time on deck or in the Panorama lounge with fellow travellers as we sail towards Iceland. Enjoy a refreshing workout in the ships well-equipped fitness room with a panoramic ocean view or let your muscles relax in one of the outdoor whirlpools.

Day 12 Djupavik

In 1917 Elas Stefnsson settled down in Djupavik and built a herring salting factory. Today you can still see the remains of the factory as well as only seven houses and a hotel here. We will explore the landing site, and the beautiful natural scenery surrounding it.

Day 13 Patreksfjrdur

Patreksfjrdur is a charming settlement on the west coast of Iceland with around 660 inhabitants. The picturesque fjord offers scenic hiking trails if conditions allow. Patreksfjrdur is also close to the spectacular waterfall of Dynjandi and to Ltrabjarg, a renowned site for birdwatching.

Day 14 Stykkishlmur

As we reach the west region of Iceland, you will understand why this area is dubbed The Sagaland. Take your time to explore Stykkishlmurs diversity with lava and rock formations, glaciers, volcanic activity, and hot and cold springs. Participate in a range of exciting excursions such as kayaking and hiking.

Day 15 Reykjavik, Iceland

Reykjavik is the worlds northernmost capital city. Norwegian settlers named the place Reykjavik (meaning ‘Smoky Bay’) after the columns of steam that rose from the hot springs in the area and made a profound impression. The surroundings offer fantastic natural beauty with geysers, mountains, glaciers and geothermal baths that are well worth exploring after disembarking from MS Fram.