1 877 412-8527

Iceland and Svalbard

Arctic Svalbard Cruise Information

  • Silver Cloud (Polar Voyages)
  • Luxury Expedition Ship
  • approx. 240 Capacity
  • 14 Days
  • 2021 View Departure>
    • 2021
    • Jul 3 Sat Offer
  • Price from
  • $14,900
  • I'm Interested

Summary : The Arctic has long held travelers spellbound, and this 14-day voyage to Svalbard is no exception. Venture far north, sailing past sculpted islands, archipelagos and mountains. Travel into very remote and isolated areas where seabirds and marine life far outnumber the local population. Cruise along the North Cape to Tromsø, enjoying the fabled white nights as you go.

Activities : Birding, Culture, Hiking, Photography, Triple/Quad Cabins

PRICING

Just-Released Offer

  • Free airfare from select gateways
    (or up to a $1,500 air credit)
  • One free pre-cruise hotel night
  • One free post-cruise day-use only hotel
  • Free transfers between airport/hotel/ship
  • Save 10% per person off cruise fare
  • Offers may not be combinable; conditions may apply

View offer details

Prices from
$14,900 to $53,400

View All Rates

Itinerary
Day 1
Reykjavik, Iceland

Board the Silver Cloud to set sail in the afternoon.

Day 2
Latrabjarg Cliffs / Westfjords, Iceland

On Iceland’s north coast and close to the westernmost tip of the country are the impressive cliffs of Latrabjarg; Europe’s largest bird cliff. Millions of individual seabirds make their home along the promontory safe from the range of scavenging foxes on the steep ledges. Atlantic Puffins, Northern Gannets, Razorbills and guillemots have each selected their preferred areas in and above the cliff in which to roost and nest.

Iceland is well-known for its spectacular waterfalls. The iconic Dynjandi waterfall, located in the Westfjords region, is regarded as one of Iceland’s most impressive and majestic waterfalls. At the top, the cascading water is roughly 100 feet wide and tumbles down about 330 feet into the fjord. Its name Dynjandi means, “the thundering one” and its vast size, enormous sound, and sheer force is overwhelming. It has also been nicknamed, ‘The Bridal Veil’ because of the way the water sprays and spreads over the rocks.

Day 3
Vigur Island / Hornbjard Cliffs, Iceland

Vigur Island is a little more than a mile in length and about 450 yards wide. This green oasis punctuates the waters of the Ísafjarðardjúp fjord east of the town of Isafjordur. The island is home to a single farming family and has some meticulously preserved historical landmarks including Iceland’s only windmill, built in 1840 and used until 1917 for grinding imported wheat from Denmark; and a 200-year-old rowing boat, which is still in use to ferry sheep to the mainland. Summer is the best time to see large numbers of Atlantic Puffins, Arctic Terns and Black Guillemots. One of the export articles from this small island was eider down and one can see where the eider ducks nest and how the down is collected and cleaned.

The Hornbjarg Cliffs are found in the northernmost part of Iceland’s Westfjords and are considered to be among Iceland’s most spectacular bird cliffs. As part of the Hornstrandir Nature Reserve the cliffs rises high on the seaside to then slope down on the landward side as green lush hills. Thousands of Northern Fulmars, Common and Brünnich’s Guillemots, Atlantic Puffins and gulls can be seen in the cliffs or soaring in the updrafts.

Day 4
Akureyri, Iceland

Iceland’s Capital of the North is the gateway to a thrilling land of roaring waterfalls, soaring volcanoes and glorious wildlife. It may lie a mere 60 miles from the Arctic Circle, but Akureyi blossoms with a bright, cosmopolitan feel, and explodes into life during the summer months, when its outdoor cafes and open-air bathing spots fill up with visitors ready to immerse themselves in Iceland’s cinematic scenery. Feel the thundering impact of Iceland’s celebrated natural wonders shaking your bones at Godafoss Waterfalls, known as the ‘Waterfalls of the Gods’. Here, the Skjálfandafljót river unleashes a colossal torrent of water over charcoal-black rocks below. Or, find some peace at the Botanical Gardens, which opened in 1957 and offer space for contemplation - amid plants that bloom with unexpected vibrancy, even at this northerly latitude.

The Lutheran, Akureyrarkirkja Church rises like a grand church organ and is the town’s most striking landmark. The 112-step climb is worth the effort to see light flooding in through its narrow stain glass windows, spreading colorful patchworks across the interior. Magic and mythology are important elements of Icelandic folklore, and you’ll even bump into giant sculptures of grizzled, child-snatching trolls on the town’s high street. Or, meet more earthly - but no less magical - creatures in the waters around Akureyi, where immense blue whales cruise by and dolphins playfully leap. A trip to the northerly Grimsey island will take you on an inspiring adventure traversing the Arctic Circle to a remote island where flame-beaked puffins nod on cliff-side perches and razorbills nest.

Day 5
At Sea

Days at sea are the perfect opportunity to relax, unwind and catch up with what you’ve been meaning to do. So whether that is whale watching from the Observatory Lounge, or writing home to your loved ones, these blue sea days are the perfect balance to busy days spent exploring shore side.

Day 6
Jan Mayen Island, Norway

Humpback and minke whales cavort and feed in the waters around the impressive volcanic island of Jan Mayen with its towering ebony peaks and broad black lava beaches. The primordial landscape is dominated to the north by the 7,500 feet high Mt. Beerenberg, an active volcano covered in glacial ice that last erupted in 1985. With permission from the Norwegian authorities, a landing is possible at this rarely visited outpost. Visitors may walk to the research and weather station, or beyond, for birds-eye views of the meteorological station and the long black sandy eastern shore of the island. Birds to be seen here may include Atlantic puffins, fulmars, and snow buntings.

Day 7
At Sea

Days at sea are the perfect opportunity to relax, unwind and catch up with what you’ve been meaning to do. So whether that is whale watching from the Observatory Lounge, or writing home to your loved ones, these blue sea days are the perfect balance to busy days spent exploring shore side.

Day 8 – 11
Svalbard Northern Region

There are several deep fjords and prominent glaciers in the northern reaches of Svalbard, as well as the northern hemisphere’s widest glacier front. Ice conditions will dictate how much can be accessed in terms of cruising bird islets like the Andøyane Islets or approaching glaciers like Monaco Glacier and Seliger Glacier. The Northern Region is also known to have several walrus haul-outs and areas defined as “Arctic Desert”. Walks and hikes ashore to have a closer look at flora and wildlife are a possibility in the spectacular Northern Region of Svalbard.

Svalbard’s Southern Region and specifically Spitsbergen’s west coast is less ice-clogged than the rest of Svalbard due to the moderating influenced of the Gulf Stream. Several fjords cut into the western coast of Spitsbergen and have been used by trappers and hunters, as well as the different mining companies that tried to exploit the riches of the archipelago’s largest island of Spitsbergen. Remains of huts and mines, as well as active commercial and scientific settlements can be found and visited. Depending on the time of the season, glaciers can be visited on foot or by sea. Northern places like Magdalenefjorden and Hornsund will reveal fascinating views of geological formations, craggy mountains, spectacular glaciers and a variety of seabirds and seals.

Day 12
Bear Island, Norway

Almost half way between Tromsø and Svalbard is isolated Bear Island – considered the southernmost island of the Svalbard Archipelago. The unglaciated island is an impressive Nature Reserve of steep, high cliffs that are frequented by seabirds, specifically at the southern tip. Brünnich’s Guillemots, Common Guillemots, Black Guillemots, Razorbills, Little Auks, Northern Fulmars, Glaucous Gulls, Black-legged Kittiwakes, and even Atlantic Puffins and Northern Gannets nest along the cliffs south of Sørhamna. Because of the large numbers of birds and the isolated location, Bear Island has been recognized as an Important Bird Area. It was once a hotspot for whaling and walrus hunting, and at one stage even mining. Bear Island received its name because of a polar bear encountered by early explorer Willem Barentsz. Today polar bears rarely visit the island and its only settlement is a meteorological station manned all-year round on the north side.

Day 13
Gjesvaerstappan Islands / North Cape / Skarsvag, Norway

Gjesværstappan Islands is a group of steep-sided islands located near the northernmost point of Norway and includes three main islands: Stortstappen, Kjerkestappen and Bukkstapen. These three islands dramatically jut out of the ocean, covered in as much grass as they are occupied by birds. Extreme in its varied beauty and wildlife on land and sea, Gjesværstappan Nature Reserve (which makes up most of the Gjesværstappan Islands) is one of Europe’s most accessible and largest nesting areas for Atlantic seabirds. On Storstappen, the largest of the islands, some varieties of birds that can be found include European Shags, Common and Brünnich’s Guillemots, Black-legged Kittiwakes, White-tailed Sea-eagles and Europe’s largest Atlantic Puffin colony.

Situated at the very north tip of Norway and inside the Arctic Circle, there is something very special about being (almost) at the top of the world. Called the northernmost point of Europe, the North Cape (Nordkapp in Norwegian) lies about 1,306 miles from the North Pole, with no dry land between except for the Svalbald archipelago. Home to where the Atlantic and Arctic oceans meet, this is the true land of the midnight sun – constant spectacular scenic views and 24-hour sunlight lends itself to a sense of giddy informality aboard. Just imagine sipping a chilled glass of champagne at the very top of the world in full daylight at midnight – sensational. Be sure to be on the lookout for hundreds of thousands of puffins, gannets, cormorants, seals, dolphins and whales that make this stretch of chilly water their home. Not forgetting the colorful, compact fishing villages, so at odds with the otherwise this stark, barren landscape.

For those who prefer comfort, the Silver Cloud will anchor off Skarsvag, the “most northerly fishing village in the world”, and, weather conditions permitting, head ashore via Zodiac. Then travel by coach to the North Cape where you can admire the glorious scenery, stop in at the visitor’s center and take photos at the famed globe monument. On a clear day the panorama is quite spectacular. On the return to Silver Cloud watch for reindeer grazing on the surrounding hillsides.

Day 14
Tromsø, Norway

Disembark the vessel after breakfast.

Notes

Read this itinerary as a guide only; the exact route and program varies according to ice and weather conditions – and the wildlife you encounter. Flexibility is the key to the success of this expedition. ExpeditionTrips is not responsible for itinerary changes.

Travel Insurance:
Although travel insurance is not mandatory to participate in this voyage, ExpeditionTrips strongly recommends Emergency Medical/Evacuation coverage which includes coverage for cancellation, trip disruption, baggage and personal property. Other conditions may apply based on pre-existing conditions. ExpeditionTrips can assist U.S. residents with travel protection options.

Photo Studio:
Unique to Silver Cloud, the Photo Studio offers a vibrant, creatively inspiring space where you can not only master the art of digital photography with Masterclasses, but also offers an editing suite where you can print images using state-of-the-art equipment plus a dedicated photo manager.

Special Onboard Expert Guest: Prof. Brent Alloway
GEOLOGIST
Brent Alloway is a former associate professor of Quaternary earth science and volcanology at Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand (2009-2016) and currently holds honorary professorial adjunct positions at Auckland University, NZ and the University of Wollongong, NSW, Australia. Brent is a very experienced earth scientist having conducted research-based fieldwork in many realms of the world (ranging from Alaska to Antarctica) and is particularly interested in landscape histories, volcanism, paleoenvironmental change and human origins. Brent’s diverse earth science interest is reflected in his authorship of over 87 international journal articles and several book chapters – many articles of which are now highly cited. One of Brent’s most interesting lines of research has been examining evidence for a new species of hominin (Homo floresiensis or the ‘Hobbit’) in Flores, east Indonesia, as part of a joint Indonesian-Australian scientific team. This research resulted in two articles being published in the prestigious journal Nature in 2016.
In November 2009, Brent received the McKay Hammer Award from the NZ Geological Society in recognition for meritorious research contribution to NZ geology. Though recently (and early) retired from academic teaching and responsibilities - Brent is still very much actively involved in earth science research and assisting students in southern Chile and Argentina, New Zealand, western Australia, Indonesia and Papua New Guinea.

Included:
Shipboard accommodations; Wi-Fi onboard ship (1x device per guest for Vista-Deluxe Veranda; 2x devices per guest for Medallion-Owner's suites); parka; backpack; one voyage highlights DVD per cabin; most meals onboard ship; butler service; most beverages onboard ship; gratuities onboard ship (except spa). Royal, Grand, and Owner’s Suites receive laundry service throughout the voyage as well as dinner for two in La Dame (one evening per voyage) and two hours of worldwide phone use from your suite, per voyage. Subject to change without notice.

Not Included:
Airfare; transfers and luggage handling; meals on board at La Dame Restaurant unless mentioned above as included; some alcoholic premium beverages; travel insurance; government fees and taxes; visa and passport expenses; gifts and items of a personal nature such as laundry (unless mentioned as included) and spa options; fuel surcharge may apply.

Photos: © Creative Services at Silversea Cruises, © Elliott Neep (polar bear reflection, gull, Bear Island), © Richard Sidey (polar bear with passengers), © Daniela Plaza (walrus)

Would you like to learn more about this trip or request availability?

YES!