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Land of the Ice Bears – An In-Depth Exploration of Arctic Svalbard

Svalbard Polar Bear Tour Information

Summary : Experience nature in its purest form in the High Arctic. A remote archipelago situated just over 600 miles from the North Pole, Svalbard is a place of deep fjords, mountains and massive sheets of ice. During summer, when the sun never sets, the tundra experiences a warm awakening as wildflowers carpet the earth, walrus raise their sleepy heads to observe you, and fjords ring with the thunderous sound of glacial ice crashing to the sea. This voyage is undertaken in the spirit of discovery, and nature is full of wonderful surprises. The pace is unhurried and your options are many, so the day-by-day itinerary below is a thoughtfully considered framework.

All departures are photo expeditions, see end of page for details.

Activities : Birding, Child-Friendly, Culture, Hiking, Kayaking, Photography, Dedicated Solo Cabins, Triple/Quad Cabins


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Day 1
Fly Overnight to Oslo, Norway

Fly to Oslo on an overnight flight.

Day 2
Oslo, Norway

Arrive in Oslo, the capital city where each year the Nobel Peace Prize is awarded in the presence of the King of Norway. Check in to your hotel. In the afternoon, your introduction to Oslo begins with a stroll among the famed Vigeland sculptures—hundreds of life-size human figures set in terraced Frogner Park. Next visit the Fram Museum, dedicated to Norwegian explorers Nansen and Amundsen. The evening is free.

Day 3
Oslo / Longyearbyen / Embark Ship

Depart Oslo on a charter flight, and enjoy breathtaking vistas en route to Longyearbyen. On arrival, meet up with a local guide and take a short bus ride to Camp Barentz in the nearby Advent Valley for a taste of Arctic culture. Here, you’ll discover a unique collection of buildings including an authentic gamme, a traditional round building with an open fire in the center, and a lavvo, the traditional tent of the Sami people. Enjoy refreshments and an expert presentation on the polar bear before meeting some of the friendly, sled dog huskies that reside at camp. Embark National Geographic Explorer, your base for the next six days.

Day 4 – 9
Exploring Svalbard

Your travel in the archipelago is truly exploratory by design, and the exact day-to-day movements will remain flexible, depending on local conditions.

The main focus is the search for Svalbard’s amazing wildlife: polar bear, reindeer and walrus. Observe seals and arctic foxes and search for the very symbol of the Arctic—majestic polar bears. Cruising in Svalbard’s fjords, venture to the foot of stunning tidewater glaciers. Take out Zodiacs and kayaks to cruise among beautiful icebergs, and experience the geology, wildlife, and wildflowers that give color and vitality to the High Arctic.

Day 10
Longyearbyen / Disembark / Oslo

Disembark in Longyearbyen and visit the Museum and Art Gallery. Fly back to Oslo and overnight at the SAS Radisson Blue Airport Hotel.

Day 11
Oslo, Norway / Home City

After breakfast, proceed to the airport for your flight home, or continue on to other adventures.


This itinerary is subject to change. ExpeditionTrips is not responsible for itinerary changes.

Travel Insurance:
ExpeditionTrips strongly recommends at least $200,000 Emergency Medical/Evacuation coverage for trips 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.

Lindblad-National Geographic Certified Photo Instructor:
On all departures, a certified photo instructor will be at your side and at your service to inspire and assist you. Take advantage of talks, presentations, slideshows and “laptop gallery” sharing events. All skill and interest levels are welcome; the instructors can meet you wherever you are on your journey. All you need to participate is a camera— point-and-shoot, smartphone, DSLR, whatever—and a sense of adventure. And you’re sure to return home with amazing photos.

Optional Pre-Trip Extension: Norwegian Fjords
The rich landscapes of southern Norway, including Sognefjord—the longest and deepest fjord in Norway—are the ideal addition to your adventures. Thundering waterfalls and snowey peaks offer wonderful photo ops. From $4,390 per person. (5 Days)

Optional Post-Trip Extension: Iceland's Natural Wonders
Explore the geological wonders in the heart of the Icelandic wilderness: towering glaciers and gushing hot springs, boiling mud pools, lava fields, and thundering waterfalls. From $4,270 per person. (4 Days)

One pre-cruise hotel night in Oslo, one post-cruise hotel night in Oslo; accommodations aboard ship; meals aboard ship and most alcoholic beverages onboard ship; shore excursions and sightseeing; entrance fees; special access permits; crew gratuities; transfers to and from group flights; use of kayaks; gratuities; taxes and service charges; services of your expedition staff. Subject to change without notice.

Not Included:
Air transportation; extensions; security fees; visa and immigration fees; meals in Oslo; premium alcoholic beverages; travel insurance; visa and passport expenses; items of a personal nature such as email, laundry; optional extensions; fuel surcharge may apply.

Photos: © Ralph Lee Hopkins (polar bear, caribou, Zodiac); © Michael S Nolan (polar bear with cubs, walrus, photographers, kayaks)

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