2023 Svalbard | Spitsbergen 16 days Circumnavigation (1)
Join the Reade Swan // Noorderlicht to Spitsbergen for a compete circumnavigation.
Sailing expedition to Spitsbergen
A circumnavigation around Spitsbergen offers you the best opportunities for a complete Arctic experience. Step aboard the sailing ship Noorderlicht and join us in searching polar bears, walruses & whales, arctic foxes and special bird species such as the ivory gull and puffins. Be amazed at the versatility of the Arctic wilderness with spectacular glaciers, encounters with Arctic animals and delve into the history of Spitsbergen with a visit to historic whaling stations.
Day 1: Embarkation in Longyearbyen
You will arrive at the small airport of Longyearbyen, located about 15 minutes drive from the centre of the small town.
Our sailing ship Reade Swan // Noorderlicht will be waiting for you at the so-called ‘floating pier' where you can embark from 16:00. After a welcome from the captain, the mooring lines will be cast off and the ship sets course towards Bellsund.
Day 2: Glacier Fridtjofbreen and the historic sights in the Bellsund
In the Bellsund we will organize a landing at Midterhuken. During lunch we will sail to Kapp Toscane, where we will be dropped off near 3 old row boats. From there we walk to Kvitfiskstranda ('white whale beach'). Depending on the weather conditions we will sail further towards the Hornsund or the South Cape of the island of Spitsbergen.
Day 3-4: Around the South Cape towards the east of Spitsbergen
If the weather - and ice conditions are favourable to us, we will visit the Hornsund. These two days are focussed on rounding the notorious Southern Cape. We then sail in northerly direction to the island EdgeØya. Due to the flat and accessible island we have the possibility of a landing at Kapp Lee near Dolerittneset ('Dolerite point').
Day 5: Visit the impressive Negribreen, Heleysundet & 'Noorderlichtbukta'
After taking plenty of time for the Negribeen, we will attempt to sail through the Heleysundet. In the channel there is a nameless bay where only our red sailing ship is known to have anchored. The crew of the Noorderlicht has therefore given this bay a name: the 'Noorderlichtbukta'. Here we have the possibility of a nice walk under and on top of the cliffs of Straumslandet.
Day 6: The famous bird cliff Alkefjellet
We set sail in the direction of the spectacular bird cliff Alkefjellet. We will spend the rest of the day sailing in a northerly direction through the Hinlopenstraat. In the Lomfjorden we will look for an anchorage for the night.
Day 7: Nordaustlandet – the northeastern limit of our trip
After a morning walk in Faksevagen with impressive views over the glacier Gullfaksebreen, we cross the Hinlopen Strait towards the most northeastern island of this trip: Nordaustlandet. We may take an evening walk at the special landmark Kinnvika.
Day 8-9: 80 degrees north towards the 'de Zeeuwse Uitkijck'
During the next two days we celebrate passing the most northerly point of our journey at a latitude of 80 degrees north. We sail along the island of Moffen. In this northern area, the ice determines where to sail and where to go ashore. Depending on the circumstances we can explore the natural harbor Mushamna and the immense glacier front of the Monaco Breen in the Love Fjord or we sail to the Raudfjorden with his typical red mountains.
Day 10: Whaling history at Smeerenburg
As we sail further north we come across the island of Amsterdam. After landing you will receive an extensive lecture on whaling in Smeerenburg and the ship will move to Sallyhamna where we will find anchorage for the night.
Day 11-12: The glaciers of Kongsfjord and Krossfjord
The next morning we sail to the beautiful Kongfjord and Krossfjord where we will be greeted by the towering face of the “14th July” glacier. We may also be able to organize a landing on the Blomstrandhalvoya peninsula.
Day 13: Walruses and a panoramic view on the Prins Karls Forlandet
Today we will start early, sailing a southerly course towards the St. Johnsfjord. If we can complete this passage, we will make a landing at Murraypynten. n the afternoon we will continue the journey south, towards the St. Johnsfjord, where we will anchor in the sheltered bay.
Day 14: Ghost Town in Soviet style: Barentsburg
If possible making a stop in the sheltered and beautiful bay of St. Johnsfjord. After an adventurous journey in the unspoilt nature of Spitsbergen, you will have the opportunity to move freely without the supervision of a guide with a rifle, as is necessary in most of Spitsbergen.
Day 15 : Sailing towards Longyearbyen
In the morning we hope to make a final landing in Colesbukta. We will spend the rest of the day sailing back to Longyearbyen.
Day 16: Goodbye Reade Swan // Noorderlicht
Unfortunately, our adventure through the Arctic landscape of Spitsbergen has come to an end. After a hearty breakfast, you are kindly requested to disembark by 09:00.
PLEASE NOTE: All itineraries are for guidance only. Programs may vary depending on ice, weather, and wildlife conditions. Landings are subject to site availabilities, permissions, and environmental concerns per AECO regulations. Official sailing plans and landing slots are scheduled with AECO prior to the start of the season, but the expedition leader determines the final plan. Flexibility is paramount for expedition cruises