Discover Spitsbergen

Immerse yourself in a stunning arctic world and sleep comfortably in warm guesthouse accommodation each night. This adventure includes a selection of our favourite hikes and boat trips enabling you to summit glaciers with breathtaking views and cruise iceberg filled waters where seals and walruses bask. Discover a fascinating variety of migratory birds and tundra fields where reindeer graze; explore fjords, ancient settlements and cliffs...

Itinerary

  • Day 1 Flight to Longyearbyen

    Flight to Longyearbyen Welcome to Longyearbyen, we will greet you at the airport and escort you to your accommodation in the city. Normally our flights arrive in the night but we will have time to explore Longyearbyen in the morning.

    Transport: Private vehicle and aeroplane
    Accommodation: Guesthouse

  • Day 2 Plateau Mountain and the Frozen Garden of Eden

    Plateau Mountain and the Frozen Garden of Eden Our first hike will immerse us in the unique atmosphere of this wild archipelago with breathtaking views of Adventfjord and the village of Longyearbyen. As we climb up perhaps we will spot little auks nesting in the cliffs by us as well as a variety of rich minerals and colourful flora. Our hike ends at the global seed reserve, this impressive Noahs Ark type refuge is found in the middle of these icy lands; it stores a large number of our planets existing botanical species.

    Activities: around 5 hours of hiking
    Accommodation: Guesthouse

  • Day 3 The Two Glaciers Hike

    The Two Glaciers Hike Todays stunning hike starts and ends at our accommodation, first we will follow the Nybyen, valley where the hillsides are speckled with reminders of former mining days, to Lars glacier. Our route continues up Lars Glacier to a crest with simply stunning views of the area and descends via Longyear Glacier.

    Activities: around 5-6 hours of hiking
    Accommodation: Guesthouse

  • Day 4 Isjford Cruise

    Isjford Cruise This morning we will board a former fishing boat for a day tour of the most beautiful areas of the Isfjord. You can expect to see a large variety of birds like petrels, puffins and guillemots as well as views of Esmark Glacier and its numerous icebergs where seals bask in the sun. A bountiful salmon lunch is served on board and the cruise continues towards the cliffs of Alkhornet where thousands of migratory birds nest. Last but certainly not least, will visit the Russian city of Barentsburg, Svalbards second largest city before returning to Longyeabyen for dinner.

    Transport: Boat trip
    Accommodation: Guesthouse

  • Days 5 to 6 Climbing Nordenskiöld Glacier

    Climbing Nordenskiöld Glacier Today we summit the impressive Nordenskiöld Glacier. We will follow a river of cast iron up to Sverdru plateau where reindeer graze - the geological formations and fossils in this area are remarkable. Then, if conditions allow, we will follow the ridge up to the summit.

    Activities: around 6-7 hours of hiking
    Accommodation: Guesthouse

  • Day 7 Foxfanna Glacier

    Foxfanna Glacier A short minibus journey will enable us to visit one of the last remaining active mines on Spitsbergen. Our hike today includes walking on Foxfanna Glacier; keep your eyes open for reindeer and migratory birds (phalaropes, geese, turns...) as we descend through the tundra fields.

    Activities: around 5 hours of hiking
    Transport: minibus
    Accommodation: Guesthouse

  • Day 8 Farewell Spitsbergen

    Farewell Spitsbergen Morning transfer to the airport and flight home

Please note that this itinerary, including walking distances and times, is indicative. Our guides aim to provide the adventure that is best suited to the weather, your interests and the demands of the group. Please be aware that in order to achieve this, changes to the programme may be made.

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Dates & prices

Departures for English-speaking groups:

From To Price per person Guaranteed Booking
€1,995 Yes Book now!
€1,995 Yes Book now!

Departures for French-speaking groups:

No departure for now

Trip code: ENSPT2CA

Included


  • Airport transfers
  • Guesthouse accommodation in Longyearbyen, shared facilities
  • Full supervision by an experienced professional guide, all hikes are guided
  • Full board except one evening meal (day 9)
  • Day cruise of Isjford, includes lunch, Esmark Glacier, Alkhornet cliffs and Barentsburg
  • Midnight sun cruise Longyearbyen - Svea Glacier - Longyearbyen

Not included

  • Registration fee: €18 per person (free for under 12s)
  • Flights
  • Evening meal on day 9 in Longyearbyen (kitchen facilities/restaurant options available)

Additional Options

Please let us know if you would like to reserve any of the following optional activities:
  • Meal in a local restaurant: from €30
  • Svalbard museum: from €9
  • Summer dog-sledding: from €110 for a half day excursion
  • Sea-kayaking: prices vary (please contact us for more information)

Notes

Comfort: 4/5 Comfortable

Well-equipped accommodation options like basic hotels or charming guesthouses are rated 4/5 for comfort. Please note that depending on the destination this does not necessarily guarantee private bathroom and kitchen facilities.


Difficulty: 2/5 Moderate

In general no previous experience in the specific activity is required but you should be in good physical shape and prepared to participate in 4-6 hours of activity per day. You should have a sense of adventure and a positive attitude.

This programme includes some longer and some shorter days. Please note that our difficulty ratings may vary depending on the weather.

Insurance

Practical info

Staff

You will be welcomed at the airport by a representative from our friendly team and accompanied for the duration of your holiday. Armed with an abundance of experience and a wealth of knowledge our professional Svalbard team are experts in polar environments. All activities are lead by our qualified guides who are all English speaking outdoor practitioners with a passion for everything arctic. Please note that this adventure takes place in an isolated, polar environment where around 2500 Polar Bears live - your guide will explain safety rules which must be followed.

Food

Besides one evening meal in Longyearbyen  this trip includes full board, for your evening meal on day 9 there are shops and kitchen facilities available or local restaurants for you to sample - we have lots of recommendations!

Despite the lack of available fresh fruits and vegetables in the artic regions we are proud of the varied, fresh and frankly delicious food we provide. Meals are based on a selection of local products and you will have the opportunity to try several local delicacies. Each  day will start with a cold breakfast accompanied by plenty of tea and coffee or hot chocolate. Then you will prepare your own picnic lunch for the day from a buffet style array of options. Evening meals are bountiful and include three courses, soup, a hot dish and a dessert.

Your help in the kitchen is expected and much appreciated, particularly in the evenings. We like when the whole group work as a team to cook dinner, it creates a pleasant atmosphere as we reflect on the days adventures together.

Please let us know about any dietary requirements when you book the trip and we will work with you to cater for your needs.

Accommodation

Longyearbyen: comfortable guesthouse accommodation, double rooms or dormitories of 2, 3 or 4 beds, shared kitchen and bathroom facilities, hot showers and heating

Transportation

This trip includes transportation by local boat and minibus.

Budget & exchange

The currency in Svalbard (and Oslo) is the Norweigian Krone, NOK
Please budget for:
  • Any additional activities
  • Drinks and personal expenses
  • One evening meal in Longyearbyen, kitchen facilities, shops and restaurants available.
We recommend a budget starting from €30 / 290NOK for a traditional meal in a local restaurant

Tips

Tap water is always safe to drink in Norway.

Supplied equipment

We will provide you with all of the technical equipment you will need for this adventure - all you need to bring are your hiking boots.

Group Equipment

  • A Sarsat beason
  • A VHF radio
  • A heavy caliber rifle
  • An alarm gun
  • A copy of Spitsbergens animal records
  • A first aid kit
  • Books about local flora and fauna

Material

We prefer that you do not wear cotton clothing, including underwear, when participating in activities. When cotton gets wet from water or sweat it ceases to insulate and it does not dry fast. The best materials for outdoor activities are fast drying materials like polyester or materials which are warm when wet like wool.

The most powerful materials against the wind and rain are 'breathable' materials like Gore-Tex or Nikwax.

Our advice for keeping warm

It can be humid and cold in Spitsbergen, please think carefully about what clothes you pack especially for our winter trips. We will provide warm outer layers but the layers you wear next to your skin can make the biggest difference. We recommend:
  • No cotton
  • Bring dry spares of everything, including underwear and gloves
  • Wear multiple layers including:
    1. A warm breathable base layer
    2. A second thermal layer
    3. Wind and waterproof protective out layers

Luggage

You may bring a hold bag (up to 20kg) as well as a cabin bag.

For you hold luggage please bring a soft bag like a ruckack rather than a hard cased suitcase because it is more practical when loading local buses and trailers. We also recommend that you pack your clothes in plastic bags inside your rucksack so that they stay dry in the event of bad weather.

Don't forget to bring a small rucksack to use as a day bag. You can bring this as hand luggage on the plane. You will carry your lunch, water, spare layers and any personal medication with you each day in this bag.

Medicine

Your guide is a trained first-aider and will carry a full first aid kit at all times during the trip. Please bring with you any personal medication that you may need such as inhalers, plasters and painkillers.

Healthcare in Norway can be extremely expensive, we strongly advice all of our clients to invest in insurance before travelling.

Passport

You will need a passport that is valid for at least three months after your return date.

Visa

The Norwegian archipelago of Svalbard is a visa-free zone

Mandatory vaccines

There are no specific health risks

Health information & recommendations

Please be aware that your guide will be carrying a gun along with other safety equipment to alarm/repel any Polar Bears.

Healthcare in Norway can be extremely expensive, we strongly advice all of our clients to invest in insurance before travelling.

Weather

The weather in the Svalbard archipelago is very changeable.

The average annual rainfall in Longyearbyen is only 200mm (7.87 inches), in London, England, the annual average is 594mm (23.4 inches)! Spitsbergen is a cold desert, showers are very rare in summer.

In summer temperatures can range from 1 - 14°C (34 - 57°F), the average temperature is 6 - 8°C (43 - 46°F). The temperature of the sea in summer is around 2°C (35°F) on the West coast and -2°C (28°F) on the East. It is always colder nearer the glaciers.

Strong katabatic winds can occur here, particularly near to high glaciers but the winds are normally calm in June and July. Summer winds can generally be described as moderate and localised, the winds tend to pick up towards the end of August as winter nears.

Dark polar nights occur from 14th November to 29th January, the full moon shines across the snow creating a beautiful gliterring winter landscape. Then, from 19th April to 23rd August, the sun shines constantly, uninterrupted, high in the sky. 

Electricity

In Spitsbergen the standard Europlug socket with two round prongs is used, 230V with a frequency of 50hz

Local time

Svalbard uses Greenwich Mean Time (GMT) +1 hour and Daylight Saving Time (DST) is observed here.

Topography

  • The Norweigian Svalbard archipelago is the closest territory to the North Pole; Spitsbergen is the name of the largest island.
  • Svalbard covers an area of around 39146 square miles (63000km2) and two thirds of this polar world are constantly covered by ice.
  • The archipelago was deserted by human civilisation for a very long time but today has over 2600 inhabitants.
  • The archipelago has 3 National Parks, 3 Nature Reserves, 15 Ornithological Reserves (bird reserves) and 3 Botanical Reserves.

Sustainable tourism

As adventure and wilderness travel experts who run trips to some of the most remote parts of the world, we take responsible tourism very seriously. We respect the ‘Leave No Trace’ outdoor ethical code and try to explore this beautiful location whilst causing minimal environmental damage.

In the Polar Regions the ecological balance is delicate so we ask that you are particularly careful regarding the conservation of the sites we explore. We aim to leave our camping spots even cleaner than when we arrived and, as a company, we participate in the Clean Up Svalbard programme. We support the laws, advice and recommendations which aid the conservation and protection of this unique arctic paradise. This is reflected in our trips, for example, we do not visit Ornithological Reserves during nesting season and never remove historical remains or whales bones from the beaches. We hope that all of our clients will respect our philosophies and embrace these attitudes.

The Leave No Trace policy can be summarized in 7 simple steps which we hope you will follow during ourtrip...
1.    Be prepared
2.    Stick to trails and camp overnight right
3.    Stash your trash and pick up waste
4.    Leave it as you find it
5.    Be careful with fire
6.    Respect wildlife
7.    Be considerate of other visitors

Over the years we have built up good relations with our local suppliers and we are keen to support local businesses as much as possible. We are a small company and we pay our local partners and suppliers directly insuring fair rates.

Our small group sizes not only provide a more intimate adventure but also cause less impact on the environment and local communities.

We expect all who travel with us to support and uphold our Sustainable Tourism philosophies.
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Isabelle

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Isabelle

  • Outdoor activities enthusiast
  • Adventure travel expert
  • Loves the arctic world
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Region
Spitsbergen
Activity
Hiking Svalbard in the Summer
Duration
8 days
Group
6 to 12 people
Code
ENSPT2CA
Price
From €1,995
Level
2/5
Comfort
4/5
Language(s)
English / French

Strengths

  • Warm comfortable accommodation to return to each evening after the days activities
  • Our professional and passionate on-site team who will ensure you have an unforgettable stay in complete safety
  • Exploration by alternation between guided hikes in Spitsbergens stunning wilderness and boat trips through Svalbards iconic icy waters
Highlights include:
  • A huge variety of flora and fauna
  • The Russian city of Barentsbourg
  • Glacier hiking
  • Boat trips under the midnight sun

Required level

This trip is accessible to anyone in good health with a sense of adventure and a positive attitude - we will do a 4-6 hours of activity per day. Our hikes do not normally exceed 600m height gain per day but are mostly off-trail and include crossing terrain such as tundra and glaciers. Please note that your help with tasks like cooking is much appreciated and expected - we want you to be a part of our team; not just a sheep!
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