Grand Svalbard Circumnavigation

Oslo/Longyearbyen - Longyearbyen/Oslo

Join us for a great adventure as we circumnavigate the Svalbard archipelago. This 12-day voyage is the ultimate Svlabard expedition, as we take you above 80º N to the ice edge of the Arctic Ocean. You'll hike across glaciers and paddle through Arctic waters in a kayak. Be on the lookout for the 'King of the Arctic', the polar bear, as we explore this remote and untouched wilderness.

  • Experience Svalbard in depth on a circumnavigation, including the North East Svalbard Nature Reserve
  • Take part in interesting lectures on intriguing topics from the expedition team
  • Try 'brevandring', the Norwegian way to cross a glacier
  • Revel in the anticipation of seeing the 'King of the Arctic' - the polar bear


On this voyage we will sail above 80° N to take you to the ice edge of the Arctic Ocean. This adventure will include several excursions, including hiking, kayaking, and other activities on land and on the water.

Try What the Norwegians Call ‘Brevandring’

In Norway we have a special kind of activity that we call 'brevandring' – the Norwegian way to traverse a glacier. Don’t mistake this for ice climbing. Brevandring occurs on relatively flat ice, but on some occasions you may have to navigate around small crevasses. Glaciers cover 60% of the land mass of Svalbard, so stepping out onto the ice is an essential and exceptional part of your Svalbard experience.

More Polar Bears than People

Within the Svalbard Archipelago there are approximately 3,000 polar bears and 2,500 humans. Polar bears are solitary animals with no established territory – they simply roam wherever they can expect to find food. As polar bears are marine mammals, we are more likely to see one close to the water or even in the water, especially around drift ice, which they like to use as a platform. The more eyes we have scouting for polar bears through binoculars, the higher the chance of seeing the King of the Arctic!

Your Voyage Price Includes:

  • Hurtigruten Expedition Voyage in cabin category of your choice on a full board basis (daily buffet breakfast, buffet lunch, and set or buffet dinner)
  • Economy flights between Longyearbyen and Oslo
  • One hotel night in Longyearbyen before the voyage, including breakfast
  • All transfers in Longyearbyen, incl. lunch and excursion before the voyage
  • Wind- and water-resistant jacket
  • Landings and activities on board and ashore
  • Professional English-speaking Expedition Team that gives lectures and accompanies landings and activities
  • Complimentary use of Muck Boot rubber boots
  • Complimentary tea and coffee

Not Included:

  • Flights from US
  • Travel Protection Plan
  • Luggage handling
  • Optional excursions and gratuities


  • Prices are in USD per person
  • All planned landings are subject to weather and ice conditions
  • All itineraries are subject to change
  • Single cabins on request

Related Cruises


Cruise Itinerary

This is an expedition where the elements rule, and the weather, wind, and ice conditions will determine our schedule. Safety is paramount and the captain will decide the final sailing itinerary during the voyage. Therefore, this itinerary is only an indication of what you can experience and why every expedition with Hurtigruten is unique.

August 4 & 14 2017

Departure port Oslo to Longyearbyen, Svalbard
Day 1
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Photo: Tyler Olson / Shutterstock Photo

From the City to the Stunning Arctic

Location : Oslo to Longyearbyen, Svalbard

This Grand Svalbard Circumnavigation starts with an evening flight from Oslo. Norway's capital is often called "The blue, the green, and the city in between" because of its location between the fjord and the forest. Spend a day checking out the many museums, parks, and varied architecture or relax in a café or bar. The contrast will be significant when you arrive in Longyearbyen a couple of hours later. Still, Longyearbyen is a modern town with first-class facilities, charming architecture, an internationally renowned museum and several bars and restaurants – all in the midst of the untouched Arctic wilderness.

Day 2
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Photo: Ester Kokmeijer Photo

Exploring the Old Settlements

Location : Longyearbyen and Barentsburg, Svalbard

After an overnight stay in a hotel, you can join an exciting excursion in the unique little town of Longyearbyen and the surrounding area before boarding the MS Fram. The influence of the Arctic environment is obvious but the town is also surprisingly cosmopolitan, with art galleries, pubs, long wine lists at restaurants, shops, and a small shopping center. While the town is often called an antidote to modern-day life and is a prime destination for adventure travelers, the history and heritage of the first coal miners are evident everywhere. Barentsburg is a Russian settlement, known for its coal mines and Soviet architecture, and is very different from Longyearbyen. The museum, library, and newly opened brewery function as meeting places for the community and a research station is under construction. See a colorful folklore show and visit the hotel and museum. Here you'll experience a different side of Svalbard, a little piece of Russia in the Arctic.

Days 3–5
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Photo: Ester Kokmeijer Photo

Fjords, Glaciers, and Mountains

Location : North West Spitsbergen National Park, Svalbard

Kongsfjorden is considered to be one of the most beautiful fjord areas in Spitsbergen, with mighty glaciers calving icebergs into the sea, framed by characteristic mountain formations. As we sail northwest, we reach the Krossfjord and Mitrahalvøya, where you can see cultural remains from the whaling period, beautiful alpine flora, bird cliffs, and quite often Svalbard reindeer. Try traversing a glacier with our expedition team. We also visit the former mining settlement of Ny-Ålesund, now an international center for research with a picturesque mix of old and new buildings. The North West Corner of Spitsbergen offers the largest concentration of graves, blubber ovens, and other cultural treasures from when Svalbard was first inhabited. The Raudfjord offers plenty of opportunities for great hikes. Hamiltonbukta is too shallow for our ship to navigate, but it’s perfect to explore by kayak. We will also see the enormous Monaco Glacier in Liefdefjord.

Days 6–9
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Photo: Ester Kokmeijer Photo

Into the Untouched Wilderness

Location : East Svalbard Nature Reserves, Svalbard

Eastern Svalbard boasts the highest population of polar bears on the archipelago – we really hope that we’ll get the chance to see one on this journey! Today, we'll explore Sorgfjorden, which borders the North East Spitsbergen Nature Reserve, and was the location of a famous 17th-century battle between whalers. Enjoy the view from on deck as we pass the spectacular bird cliff of Alkefjellet, one of the largest of its kind. Edgeøya is the third-largest island in the Svalbard archipelago. On its western shores, the landscape is largely un-glaciated, unlike most other places on the east side of Spitsbergen. Kapp Lee is a wonderful site where you will find cultural heritage from all eras of human exploration of Svalbard. We continue to the southern cape and the southernmost tip of Spitsbergen, where Hornsund has large variations in its landscape and geology within short distances. Ice being pushed into the fjord early in the season attracts polar bears that hunt on the ice. Rossøya is less than 620 miles from the North Pole, and when you are here you can be quite sure that there is no one between yourself and 90° North. The barren landscape is considered High Arctic, with very little vegetation due to the extreme weather conditions here most of the year. Phippsøya is home to a large ivory gull colony, and there are many opportunities to see polar bears here.

Day 10
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Photo: Nina Helland Photo

Majestic Mountains and Wonderful Wildlife

Location : Bellsund, Svalbard

Bellsund is the third-largest fjord system on Spitsbergen. We will pass the majestic Klokkefjellet Mountain while sailing the southern entrance of the sound. Enjoy landings where we will explore old trapping stations, wonderful Artic flora and fauna, and also enjoy fantastic views toward the vast expanse of this impressive fjord.

Day 11
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Photo: Camille Seaman Photo

Exploring the Fjord

Location : Isfjord, Svalbard

We will spend the day exploring the Isfjord, the most extensive fjord system on Svalbard. In the inner part of the Isfjord, the landscape changes. The immense U-shaped valleys carved out of the mountains by the giant glaciers that covered the area some ten thousand years ago are home to large populations of the endemic Svalbard reindeer. Later on we’ll find a scenic fjord arm and arrange a farewell barbecue in the most beautiful Arctic surroundings.

Day 12
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Photo: Dominic Barrington Photo

Return to Civilization

Location : Longyearbyen to Oslo

Our voyage comes to an end. You will probably sense that time has passed faster than expected. Lingering is the subtle exhilaration of having spent time on top of the globe, just a few hundred miles from the Geographic North Pole. An early morning transfer takes you to the airport for your flight back to Oslo.

July 11, 19, 27, 2017 & August 5 2017

Location Longyearbyen to Oslo
Your Ship Experiences Flight Packages

Flight Packages

Please contact us if you want to add on flights between the US and Oslo. Flight packages include transfers.