Svalbard Expedition: Home of the Polar Bear

The isolated archipelago of frozen tundra, northern lights, and polar bears under the midnight sun; Svalbard’s imposing terrain, stark glaciers, and incredible wildlife offer a diverse yachting expedition.

When to go

March - October

Experience Highlights

  • Immersive Wildlife Snowmobile Adventure
  • Adventure in Ny-Alesund & barbecue on the pack ice
  • Explore Pyramiden & abandoned whaler shacks
  • Dry suit dives with guillemots & Klerckbukta ice shelf

Longyearbyen & Arctic Safari

Access Svalbard by flying into Longyearbyen Airport, the northernmost airport in the world, where you will board your luxury yacht.

With no roads outside of Longyearbyen, you’ll journey across this arctic expanse by snowmobile. Guided by internationally recognized experts, you’ll assist the Norwegian Polar Institute’s project of animal registration while searching for wildlife. If you identify an unrecorded animal, you’ll have the honour of recording it for future scientific study.

Head ashore at Pyramiden to discover an abandoned Russian mining town, one of the finest of its kind, preserved in an eerily perfect state as some 3000 miners were told to move out overnight. With the exception of Chernobyl, there are few better examples of deserted towns anywhere in the world. In the afternoon, traverse the landscape by dog sled to reach the Research Station where you will explore the facility and meet the team of scientists investigating everything from the biodiversity of the local area to the world climate and pollution levels.

Walrus Colony & Arctic Barbecue

Climb aboard your yacht’s tender and explore the channel between Forlandet National Park and the mainland of Svalbard. Here, accompanied by naturalists, you will have the opportunity to experience a remarkably intimate encounter with the resident walrus colony and you will also take a part in monitoring these vulnerable animals.

Drop the anchor at Ny-Alesund, the ultimate adventure playground. Kayak amongst icebergs the size of houses and hike up colossal glaciers; abseil into deep crevasses. Journey to 81 degrees north to the most northerly point possible for a yacht to reach, and BBQ on the pack ice in utter seclusion, this is also the hunting ground for polar bears, as seals sleep on the broken ice.

Cruise to Klerckbukta, a vast ice shelf, and explore the hundreds of water columns cascading from the wall of ice into the sea. For a closer glimpse, take a kayak or paddle board over to the base of these magnificent glacial waterfalls. You can opt to get closer still as Pelorus Yachting dive masters lead a dry-suit diving excursion, allowing you to witness the vast scale of the ice-shelf below the water for a truly unique Arctic experience.

Fjords & Guillemots

At Woodfjorden, inspect the abandoned whalers’ cabins on foot for a glimpse into the lives of the men who spent long periods in these isolated little wooden structures. Climb the glittering glaciers and have lunch on a remote spot overlooking the fjord.

Voyage into the glacial valleys and wide fjords of Walenbergfjorden. With any luck, you may spot some polar bears from the deck. Hop into your yacht’s tender and make for the shore, where a guide will take you ski touring on virgin slopes. Prepare to take backcountry skiing to a whole new level, with vast expanses of untouched snow you can pick your own lines down the mountain.

Cruise to Wijdefjorden, a steep cliff made up of basaltic pillars which rise vertically from the waters of the Hinlopen Strait. This is the home of Brunnich’s guillemots, where the sound and spectacle of so many birds in one place is truly astonishing. Expect to spot glaucous gulls looking for a meal, as well as polar bears and arctic foxes hunting nearby. A dive master will lead you underwater in dry-suits to watch guillemots smashing into the water at great speeds to catch fish – this really is a once-in-a-lifetime experience.

Looking for more Arctic Inspiration?

Get in touch and speak to one of our Expedition Designers to learn more about our luxury yacht charters and unique adventures in Arctic.