Polar bears and so much more
by Janet Hale
A trip on an expedition ship? The Ortelius isn't a luxury cruiser, but she's a comfortable vessel, our cabin (a superior twin) was excellent, with lovely touches like Mars Bars and wine in the fridge. Unlike some cruises, bottled water was provided with lunch and dinner. There's a reasonably priced wine list and Rolando mixes a good negroni (and other cocktails). Our friendly and efficient servers were Jay and Noelle who learned our names very quickly. And the food - a great variety, well cooked and much, much better than anticipated. And the wildlife? Minke and blue whales (the first within an hour of leaving Longyearbyen), walruses, harp and bearded seals, arctic foxes, Svalbard reindeer and polar bears. One bear came so close we thought he was trying to board the ship and share our dinner. The crew, officers and staff are all approachable and the "open bridge" policy means you get the chance of panoramic views of the ice - and the wildlife - ahead. The expedition team - led by Rinie - are excellent. As a birder, I was thrilled with close avian encounters with little auk, arctic tern, ivory and glaucous gulls, black and Brunnich's guillemots, and more An amazing trip!
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Full Spitsbergen Circumnavigation with a visit to Kvitøya
HDS11-19. This cruise around Spitsbergen gives you a great chance to see whales, foxes, reindeer, seals, and polar bears. The expedition will make a landing on the island of Kvitøya, a site of historical significance, and home of a large walrus population.
10 Aug - 21 Aug, 2019
7450 USD 6050 USD 1400 USD discount
RVR17-19. At the end of a long Arctic winter, spring is starting to awaken. The climate, however, still clings to the cold: snow-covered mountains, snow-swept shores, temperatures around –4° C (25°F). It’s a good time to experience the last of winter scenery, and with a little luck, also see some polar bears,...
s/v Rembrandt Van Rijn
1 May - 8 May, 2019
Climb snow covered alpine mountains and ski downhill
RVR18-19. This program is designed for experienced ski mountaineers who have mastered ski techniques both for ascent and descent in challenging snow-covered alpine terrain. A typical day involves ski climbs on mountaintops averaging heights of 700—850 meters (2,300—2,800 feet) and downhill skiing from those p...
s/v Rembrandt Van Rijn
8 May - 15 May, 2019