W5. Spitsbergen Tour I
June 18 – 29 2020
W6. Spitsbergen Tour II
July 3 – 14 2020
The layout of the days is global! Our timing depends on the weather and ice conditions at Svalbard. The itinerary may change according to conditions. We make as many landings as possible, but the crew decides whether a planned trip portion is safe. Safety always comes first!
Day 1: 12 PM – Arrival on board in Longyearbyen, Svalbard; we familiarize you with the ship and our protocols. Guests will receive a safety orientation. We will give you regular updates with the latest information throught the trip. Depending on the weather, the wind and the ice conditions, the actual sailing itinerary will be determined a few days at a time.
When everyone is on board, with favorable winds we will leave for Tryghamna, where we drop anchor.
Day 2: We head to the bird cliff Alkhornet, at the entrance to the Tryghamna. This is the breeding ground for thousands of kittiwakes. Then we continue towards Eidembukta, a paradise for geologists, photographers and others (!) We often see our first reindeer and maybe our first polar bear tracks here…!
Day 3: We sail through the Forlandsundet farther to the north and pass Poolepynten, a spot to spot walruses on land. The water is deep, so we can approach them quite closely. With luck we’ll see minke and beluga whales.
On our last trip we even saw blue whales here!
The end of this Sund is narrow and shallow, and our route will depend on the ice conditions.
We’ll sail the Kongsfjorden with its mighty glacier at the end, and may visit Ny Ålesund which boasts the northernmost post office in the world (!). (Entrance fee NOK. 160, not included in the fare.)
This village is inhabited mainly by scientists conducting research on the Arctic. It was also the starting point of former North Pole expeditions led by Amundsen and Nobile. The birds here, including various species of ducks and geese, are exceptionally tame. You may also have the opportunity to encounter deer and artic foxes.
The last several years we encountered polar bears in Ny Ålesund, so we must be alert at all times!
Day 4: We continue the journey to the Fjords Kross, where we will admire the 14th of July Glacier. Then we sail on to the Lilliehöökfjord. In the distance you will be awestruck by an immense glacier!
We’ll go ashore with the zodiacs and, if the snow has melted, will enjoy impressive plant and animal life here. With a little luck we may even see an arctic fox scurrying along.
Day 5: We will continue going further north, soon arriving near the 80th parallel (!). This is a real accomplishment, considering that in Antarctica we are “only” able to travel down to the 65th parallel. All of this thanks to the warm Gulf Stream which flows along the west coast of Spitsbergen.
We head to one of the most photographed fjords of Svalbard: the Magdalena Fjord. After a tour of the glacier walls, we find a sheltered anchorage at Trinity Harbour, where there are tombs of (often Dutch) whalers from days gone by! We go ashore here and walk to the glacier “around the corner.” With luck we will also see walruses.
Day 6-7: We leave the Magdalena Fjord today and head for the Liefdefjord (= Love fjord) through Smeerenburg and Sallyhamna, a sheltered anchorage. On this part of the trip the chance to see polar bears increases.
In Liefdefjord is Mushamna, a beloved, secluded cove to drop anchor. If the ice allows, we will see the impressive Monaco Glacier and many other beautiful places! We’ll take the time to admire everything.
NB: These past 2 years, not all of our trips managed to sail to the Liefdefjord because of pack ice. Every year is different!
Day 8: We will anchor at a bird island, which is rarely visited and if we do, (wind?, polar bears?) we will go ashore.
Day 9-11: We leave this northern part of Spitsbergen and head south, sailing through the Fuglefjord, Smeerenburg in the direction of Isfjorden, where we anchor for the last time at Trygghamna.
Day 12: Longyearbyen. Everyone departs from the Anne-Margaretha. Traveling in Svalbard is an experience you will never forget!
Spitsbergen Trip I : June 18 – 29 2020
Price: € 3,190 p.p. in a two-person cabin
On board: June 18 at 12:00 pm in Longyearbyen
Off board: June 29 before 12:00 pm in Longyearbyen
Spitsbergen Trip II: July 3 – 14 2020
Price: € 3,190 p.p. in a two-person cabin
On board: July 3 at 12:00 pm in Longyearbyen
Off board: July 14 before 12:00 pm in Longyearbyen
Climate: The warm Gulf Stream has a big influence on the climate of the west coast of Spitsbergen. Since the temperature is rather mild, we will see varied flora and fauna. In the summer the temp. will be around + 6°C._ – 6°C. The east coast is influenced by the northerly polar winds and it’s much colder. Because of the low atmospheric humidity the temp. usually feels less cold.
Flora and fauna: On the tundras and cliffs we will see all kind of mosses and flowers. The cliffs are also a favorite breeding ground for sea birds like puffins and glaucous gulls, etc
The tundras are the natural habitat for polar foxes and reindeer. Along the coastline we will meet walruses and seals. The most well known arctic animal is of course the polar bear. Normally they stay on/near the ice pack, but in past years polar bears have been seen near Longyearbyen, our harbour where the Anne-Margaretha starts and ends. That’s why all excursions will include armed guides!
The trips are in June/July, the period when we will see a lot of breeding birds and flowers.
!! Most landings will be “wet landings” , so rubber boots are highly recommended! Also take care of your camera in the dinghy: use a proctective cover against the splashing water and in case of rainy weather..!
What to take with you?
We are sailing in the summer, but it’s near the North Pole and the summer temperatures will be between – 6 and + 6 degrees Celcius. If there’s wind, it can be chilly.
Recommended packing list
Besides the normal things, take with you:
. Warm, waterproof clothes
- Rubber boots (needed by landings). Take not to tight boots, so you can wear 2 pair of socks in it. Boots with a shaft of at least 28 cm high and soft non-slippery soles will be fine
– Warm, waterproof cloves/shawl/cap
- (enough) clothes for cold weather (hardly possibility to wash clothes..!) We recommend thermal underwear (polypropylene or wool), fleece or wool sweaters
- Warm socks (synthetic blend or wool)
- Light shoes for in the ship
- Possible CD’s/or USB with music
- Possible a cord for glasses (!)
- Sleeping bag and sheet (you also can rent the bed-clothes for € 15 for the whole trip. Please let us know before) Pillow with pillow case is on your bed.
- If necessary medicines
- Passport, or ID card (evt. Visa)
- Day-rucksack for landings/hikes
- (Copy of) your medical and travel insurance
- Camera with enough memory (You will make more pictures than you prob. did ever before!)
- Nkr. 180 enter fee Ny Alesund ( the Northern most postoffice in the world!!)
- Longyearbyen is a taxfree village and somtimes you can buy low-budget in the turistshops there.
Please use a strong weekend bag or duffle bag (No suitcases! We don’t have space)
Be sure that your lugagge is well-labeled with your name and destination: Sailing Vessel Anne-Margaretha, Longyearbyen and phone number of the ship, which you’ll receive before departure in the “Last Information” email. Also, put a piece of paper inside your suitcase with the same travel information!
We have 220 volt outlets for charging batteries in every cabin. (You may need to bring an adapter.)
On the ship we have all safety equipment, including life jackets for adults.
Recommended reading about Spitsbergen:
Spitsbergen-Svalbard A Complete Guide around the Artic Archipelago (by: Rolf Stange)
ISBN: 978-3-937903-14-9 · Paperback · 21,1 x 14,8 cm · 670 g · approx. 512 pages.