REALM OF THE POLAR BEAR

Wildlife Expedition Cruise to High Arctic Svalbard

Arctic Norway & Svalbard, Oslo & Southern Norway

Duration: 10 nights

Price: From £6,000 per person in low season based on two adults travelling together and including all flights in economy class, accommodation on a bed and breakfast basis, private transfers, cruise and taxes

Few animals capture the imagination quite as much as the mighty polar bear, and this luxury polar bear cruise holiday offers as good a chance as possible of catching a glimpse of them in the frozen wastes of Svalbard in north Norway. You’ll also get to experience Norway’s buzzing capital, Oslo, before you embark on your Arctic adventure.
Perfect forWildlife lovers hoping to catch a glimpse of the elusive polar bear among other arctic creatures.
In the knowAdding on a couple of days at the end of your trip in the stunning Lofoten Islands.

Best for

  • Cruise
  • Landscapes & Scenery
  • Wildlife & Nature
  • Adventure

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This itinerary is just a starting point. Tell us your budget/wishlist/preferred length of stay and we'll help you select the best hotels and experiences, so your holiday is totally personalised.

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Itinerary details

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1 nightOSLO

Your adventure begins in the Norwegian capital, Oslo, a cosmopolitan city which combines buzzing nightlife and world-class museums with a stunning location, with a fjord on one side and forest-covered hills on the other. You’ll spend the night at The Thief, a stylish design hotel overlooking the water in the artistic Tjuvholmen district. Attractions to check out during your time in Oslo include the Munch Museum, home to many of Edvard Munch’s most famous works including The Scream; the Vikingskipshuset, which houses remarkably preserved Viking longboats; and the Nasjonalgalleriet, Norway’s best and most celebrated art gallery. Also well worth a visit is the Oslo Opera House, an abstract glass-covered building designed to look like an iceberg, which is one of the largest and most impressive feats of architecture in the whole country.
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2 nightsLONGYEARBYEN

After a night in Oslo you’ll fly to Longyearbyen on the archipelago of Svalbard, where your Arctic adventure begins in earnest. Your home for the next two nights, Basecamp Hotel in Svalbard’s main town of Longyearbyen, is sure to get you in the mood for a polar safari. Decorated with old maps, sealskins and furs, this has the feel of a traditional trapper’s lodge, but rooms are high quality, comfortable and decked out with mod cons. Check out Galleri Svalbard for the works of artists who have been inspired by the desolate beauty of this icy frontier, in particular Kare Tveter, as well as antique maps and other exhibits. There’s also the Spitsbergen Airship Museum, which tells stories from the dramatic history of polar exploration, and Svalbard Museum, where arctic life then and now is documented with exhibits, artefacts and stuffed animals.
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7 nightsCRUISE

Next up is the main event of your Norwegian adventure: a 7-night cruise on the M/V Plancius with the aim of spotting the King of the Arctic, the polar bear, passing beautiful icy scenery and other arctic wildlife en route. Departing Longyearbyen, you first stop will be Raudfjord or Liefdefjord on the north west coast of West Spitsbergen island, a magical landscape of glaciers and fjords populated by bearded and ringed seals. With any luck, this will also be the place where you first catch a glimpse of the mighty polar bear; a large herd of walrus can be found on the nearby island of Moffen. Next you’ll sail to Rijpfjord, the site of a Nazi weather station until 1945, stopping off to hike along the fjords. You’ll then head to Phippsoya, the northernmost point on your voyage, where polar bears and ivory gull abound, before retracing your route and watching out for bears, bowhead whales, minke whales, and arctic fox among other animals. Your home for 7 nights, the M/V Plancius, is a comfortable and informal vessel with a restaurant, observation lounge and plenty of deck space where you can get a good view of the surprisingly abundant arctic wildlife.
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Best time to go

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Good time to travel (but some limitations)

Travel is possible (but it’s not the best time)

Travel is not recommended

  • Jan
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