North and East Spitsbergen - Summer Solstice

This is a combination cruise consisting of a few smaller cruises. Learn more

Title

North and East Spitsbergen - Summer Solstice

Start – End

Tripcode

HDS03d24

Language

Embarkation / Disembarkation

Longyearbyen - Longyearbyen

Nights / Days

14 nights

Group request For reservations with more than 15 guests you can contact us directly
Trips included in the combination
Cabin/berths choice is subject to availability. We can’t guarantee the exact same cabin placement on each cruise.

This expedition focuses on the versatility of north Spitsbergen's visually stunning landscapes, vast spans of sea ice, and the many opportunities to spot wildlife like whales, polar bears, seabirds, and walruses.

Join our adventurous expedition to the north of Svalbard’s largest island, taking in the area’s fantastically beautiful landscapes, thousands of seabirds, and possibly even polar bears. While searching for whales, seals, and other exotic wildlife among the sea ice, we’ll enjoy the 24-hour daylight of the midnight sun, which will provide excellent conditions for photography and activities.

Dates: 10 Jun - 17 Jun, 2024
Ship: m/v Hondius
Embarkation – Disembarkation: Longyearbyen – Longyearbyen
Duration: 7 nights

Discover the highest peaks, largest seabird colonies, and best places to spot polar bears along the eastern shores of Spitsbergen

Experience the high Arctic summer solstice with an expedition that visits some of the top sites of eastern Spitsbergen. Our goal is to take you to amazing glaciers, fascinating historical sites, bountiful seabird colonies, and sprawling fjord systems in which there is a good chance of spotting whales, seals, and possibly even polar bears.-

Dates: 17 Jun - 24 Jun, 2024
Ship: m/v Hondius
Embarkation – Disembarkation: Longyearbyen – Longyearbyen
Duration: 7 nights
Itinerary

Short description

Combining our North Spitsbergen voyage (focusing on polar bears, bowhead whales, and pack ice) with our East Spitsbergen cruise (also emphasizing bears as well as the summer solstice), this program turns two equally amazing trips into one amazing Arctic expedition.

Day 1: Largest town, biggest island

HDS03-24

You touch down in Longyearbyen, the administrative center of Spitsbergen, the largest island of the Svalbard archipelago. Enjoy strolling around this former mining town, whose parish church and Svalbard Museum make for fascinating attractions. Though the countryside appears stark, more than a hundred species of plant have been recorded in it. In the early evening the ship sails out of Isfjorden, where you might spot the first minke whale of your voyage.

HDS03-24

This voyage will take you into the pack ice and along the remote shorelines of rugged north Spitsbergen. Our landings are subject to change due to sea ice, weather conditions, and wildlife sightings. The expedition leader determines the final plan. Places you might visit include:

Raudfjord

On the north coast of Spitsbergen, you can enjoy this expansive fjord spilling with glaciers – and maybe even visited by ringed and bearded seals. The cliffs and shoreline also support thriving seabird colonies, rich vegetation, and the possibility of polar bears.

Hamiltonbukta

Here we can see an impressive colony of Brünnich’s guillemots.

Ytre Norskøya

This small island was used for many years as a lookout point for Dutch whalers, and in fact we can still follow their tracks to the summit of the island. The remains of 17th-century blubber ovens can also be seen near about 200 graves. The north side of the island offers the rare opportunity to see puffins near their breeding places, and there is even a small colony of kittiwakes.

Monaco Glacier

Depending on the weather and sea ice, you could sail into Liefdefjorden and cruise within sight of the 5-kilometer-long (3.1 miles) face of Monaco Glacier. The waters in front of this precipitous glacier are a favorite feeding spot for thousands of kittiwakes, and the base of the ice is a popular polar bear hunting ground. If ice conditions prevent us from sailing here early in the season, we can implement an alternate route along the west coast of Spitsbergen.

Northwest of Raudfjord

We aim to sail into the pack ice outside the territorial waters of Svalbard, watching for polar bears and elusive Greenland (bowhead) whales. As we sail from 80 N to 76 N along and in the outer fringes of the ice edge, we will also look for harp seals, hooded seals, polar bears, and migrating seabirds like little auks, Brünnich’s guillemots, and kittiwakes. On previous voyages in this area, we have sometimes seen up to hundred bowhead whales. We also have the chance to see northern bottlenose whales and the first fin whales of the season. The pack ice sailing will be a highlight of this voyage and may take up to three days.

Forlandsundet, St. Johns Fjord, or Alkhornet

Walruses sometimes haul out in Forlandsundet. Alternatively, we might sail into St. Johns Fjord or south to the mouth of Isfjorden, landing at Alkhornet. Seabirds nest on these cliffs, Arctic foxes search below for fallen eggs and chicks, and reindeer graze the sparse vegetation.

HDS03-24

The vessel will arrive back in Longyearbyen in the early morning. Bus transportation to the airport will be provided.

HDS04-24

The midnight sun is a phenomenon that occurs during the Arctic summer, when the sun is visible for a full 24 hours in fair weather. The 2024 summer solstice in Longyearbyen falls on 21 June, The term solstice (Latin solstitium) means “sun-stopping” and describes the point on the horizon at which the sun appears to rise and set, stopping and reversing directions after this day. On the solstice, the sun does not rise precisely in the east but rather north of east, then later sets to the north of west, making the sun visible for a longer period of time. It will not be until late August that the sun fully goes down again, and then only for a few minutes.Join us in experiencing this fascinating phenomenon during this voyage through the Arctic wilderness of Svalbard.

HDS04-24

Long hikes are for groups of 24 passengers maximum, accompanied by two armed expedition staff and a Zodiac that will sail ahead to watch for polar bears along the shoreline. Passengers who join this activity should have the willingness and ability to walk at least 15 km (9 miles) in semi-rough terrain that includes shorelines, tundra, low hills, and river crossings. Walks will take around six hours from start to finish, rest times included. We will walk at a modest pace and not cross any alpine terrain. Passengers who do not take part in long walks will have a landing in the morning at the start point of the walk, then sail to the end point of the walk for their second landing in the afternoon.

HDS04-24

You touch down in Longyearbyen, the administrative center of Spitsbergen, the largest island of the Svalbard archipelago. Enjoy strolling around this former mining town, whose parish church and Svalbard Museum make for fascinating attractions.

Though the countryside appears stark, more than a hundred species of plant have been recorded in it. In the early evening the ship sails out of Isfjorden, where you might spot the first minke whale of your voyage.

HDS04-24

We start the day by quietly cruising the side fjords of the spectacular Hornsund area in southern Spitsbergen, enjoying the scenery of towering mountain peaks. The mountain of Hornsundtind rises to 1,431 meters (4,695 feet), while the peak of Bautaen testifies to why early Dutch explorers gave this island the name Spitsbergen, meaning “pointed mountains.”

There are 14 magnificent glaciers in the area, and we have a fair chance of encountering seals and polar bears.

The nearby cliffs of Sofiakammen are also home to thousands of pairs of nesting kittiwakes and little auks, and in the evening, we might see thousands of harp seals rutting on ice floes at Sørkapp.

Long hike - If conditions permit, we land at Treskelodden, then walk from Treskelen to Adriabukta. From there we walk west to Hyrneodden and north to the glacier in Wibewika (about 16 km / 10 miles), where we will be picked up. The other guests will have their program in Brepollen (morning) and Luciakammen or Sofiakammen (afternoon). We might also do this program in reverse.

HDS04-24

After navigating the drift ice of Storfjorden, where we sometimes see harp seals, we land in northwest Edgeøya at the northern bank of Rosenberdalriver. Here on the raised beach, we have the opportunity of walking to Rosenbergdalen, which is teeming with grazing reindeer.

Afterward we plan to walk by a cliff with nesting black guillemots on our way to Stretehamna, where we often find a herd of walruses on the beach near an octagonal trapper’s cabin built in 1905.

We can also see the remains of a 19th-century Pomor house as well as the bones of walruses hunted in previous centuries.

Long hike - If conditions permit, we land at Blankoddden, near a large kittiwake colony in a beautiful canyon, then walk north along the coast to Kapp Lee (about 20 km / 12.4 miles) or to the south side of Rosenbergdalen (about 17 km / 10.6 miles), where we will be picked up. We might also do this program in reverse.

If this long hike is not possible, we might offer an alternative hike on day 4.

HDS04-24

Sailing into the waterway of Freemansundet, we plan to land at the tundra lowland of Sundneset, on the island of Barentsøya.

Here we will visit the hut of a German scientific expedition (Würzbugerhütte) from sixty years ago, then take a brisk walk across the tundra in search of Spitsbergen reindeer and barnacle geese. After that, we plan to go on a Zodiac cruise near Freeman Glacier and visit a kittiwake colony in a canyon close by.

In case of heavy ice in Freemandundet, however, we will instead sail to Negribreen, one of the most extensive glacier fronts on the east side of Spitsbergen. Here we can take a Zodiac cruise and land on Walrus Island, which became ice-free at the end of last century.

Long hike - If conditions permit, we land in Barentsøya, near small lakes with wildfowl and waders, then walk east along the coast of Barentsøya to Freemanbreen. After about 10 km (6.2 miles), we will pass a colony of kittiwakes. After another 10 km walk, we will be picked up at the west side of Freemanbreen. This is a good area to spot polar bears. We might also do this program in reverse.

HDS04-24

Today we sail to the east side of west Spitsbergen (west side of Storfjorden).

Here we plan to walk to breeding places for ivory gulls in Agardhfjellet, which stands about 300 meters (980 feet) high.

The valley leading to the outcrops that house the nests is littered with fossils of belemnites and ammonites.

HDS04-24

Today we aim to land at the mountain of Stellingfjellet, near the largest colony of Brünnich’s guillemots in Spitsbergen. Later in the day, we will make landings at the rarely visited coast of south Spitsbergen, at the bay of Isbukta.

HDS04-24

We continue our voyage in Bell Sund, one of the largest fjord systems in Svalbard. The ocean currents make this area slightly warmer than other areas in the archipelago, which shows in the relatively lush vegetation.

Here there are excellent opportunities to enjoy both history and wildlife.

A possibility is Ahlstrandhalvøya, at the mouth of Van Keulenfjorden, where piles of beluga skeletons can be found. These remains of 19th-century whale slaughter are a haunting reminder of the consequences of rampant exploitation. Fortunately, belugas were not hunted into extinction, and you have a good chance of coming across a pod.

Alternately, while cruising the side fjords of Bellsund, we can explore tundra where reindeer like to feed as well as rock slopes where little auks are breeding.

Long hike - If conditions permit, we land at Recherchelagune and walk along the eastern shore of Recherchefjord, by Laegerneset (17th century whaling station). Our goal is to reach Ahlstrandhalvøya, and from there to Ingebrigtsenbukta. If need be, our Zodiacs can help us at the mouth of the river. We might also do this hike in reverse or land at Ingeborgfjellet, then walk along the coast to the west side of van Muydenbukta, along a shore with many whale skeletons.

HDS04-24

Every adventure, no matter how grand, must eventually come to an end. You disembark in Longyearbyen, taking home memories that will accompany you wherever your next adventure lies.

m/v Hondius

Hondius is the world’s first-registered Polar Class 6 vessel and was built from the ground up for expedition cruising. Full ship info »

ACTIVITIES YOU CAN PARTICIPATE IN

Choose a cruise

Snowshoeing
HDS03-24

Snowshoeing

FREE

Snowshoe walking is easy and does not require any technical skills. The snowshoes will fit all boot sizes and can be used in combination with Oceanwide’s rubber boots

Learn more
Long hikes
HDS04-24

Long hikes

FREE

Passengers who join this activity should have the willingness and ability to walk at least 15 km (9 miles) in semi-rough terrain. Walks will take around six hours from start to finish, rest times included.

Learn more

Cabins & Prices

Prices are displayed with discounts applied if you book berths or cabins on all cruises.

HDS03-24

Triple Porthole

  • Cabin size between 15,9 m² and 16 m²
  • 2 portholes
  • 1 upper berth & 2 lower berths
  • Small sofa
  • Private shower & toilet
  • Flatscreen TV
  • Desk & chair
  • Telephone and WiFi (supplemented)
  • Hair dryer
  • Cabinet
  • Safe deposit box
  • Wardrobe
  • This cabin is suitable for families traveling with children, or passengers who do not require a twin or more luxurious cabin

Sharing berth

4000 USD

Share your cabin with others for the best price.

5000 USD

Sorry, berth is not available
HDS03-24

Twin Deluxe

  • Cabin size between 19,4 m² and 21,3 m²
  • 2 windows
  • 2 single beds
  • Sofa
  • Private shower & toilet
  • Flatscreen TV
  • Desk & chair
  • Telephone and WiFi (supplemented)
  • Refrigerator
  • Coffee & tea maker
  • Bathrobe
  • Hair dryer
  • Cabinet
  • Safe deposit box
  • Wardrobe

Complete cabin

10240 USD

Price for the complete cabin, fully occupied.

12800 USD

Sorry, cabin is not available

Single cabin

8704 USD

Price for the complete cabin occupied by 1 person (1.7x the shared rate).

10880 USD

Sorry, cabin is not available

Sharing berth

5120 USD

Share your cabin with others for the best price.

6400 USD

Sorry, berth is not available
HDS03-24

Superior

  • Cabin size between 20,7 m² and 21,3 m²
  • 2 windows
  • 1 double bed
  • Sofa
  • Private shower & toilet
  • Flatscreen TV
  • Desk & chair
  • Telephone and WiFi (supplemented)
  • Refrigerator
  • Coffee & tea maker
  • Bathrobe
  • Hair dryer
  • Cabinet
  • Safe deposit box
  • Wardrobe

Complete cabin

11680 USD

Price for the complete cabin, fully occupied.

14600 USD

Sorry, cabin is not available

Single cabin

9928 USD

Price for the complete cabin occupied by 1 person (1.7x the shared rate).

12410 USD

Sorry, cabin is not available
HDS03-24

Junior Suite

  • Cabin size between 19,2 m² and 20 m²
  • 1 double window
  • 1 double bed
  • Private shower & toilet
  • Flatscreen TV
  • Desk & chair
  • Telephone and WiFi (supplemented)
  • Refrigerator
  • Coffee & tea maker
  • Bathrobe
  • Hair dryer
  • Cabinet
  • Safe deposit box
  • Wardrobe

Complete cabin

13200 USD

Price for the complete cabin, fully occupied.

16500 USD

Sorry, cabin is not available

Single cabin

11220 USD

Price for the complete cabin occupied by 1 person (1.7x the shared rate).

14025 USD

Sorry, cabin is not available
HDS03-24

Grand Suite with private balcony

  • Cabin size 26,7 m²
  • 1 double window
  • 1 double bed
  • Sofa
  • Private balcony
  • Private shower & toilet
  • Flatscreen TV
  • Desk & chair
  • Telephone and WiFi (supplemented)
  • Refrigerator
  • Coffee & tea maker
  • Bathrobe
  • Hair dryer
  • Cabinet
  • Safe deposit box
  • Wardrobe

Complete cabin

14400 USD

Price for the complete cabin, fully occupied.

18000 USD

Sorry, cabin is not available

Single cabin

12240 USD

Price for the complete cabin occupied by 1 person (1.7x the shared rate).

15300 USD

Sorry, cabin is not available
HDS04-24

Twin Porthole

  • Cabin size between 13,3 m² and 16 m²
  • 2 portholes
  • 2 single beds
  • Small sofa
  • Private shower & toilet
  • Flatscreen TV
  • Desk & chair
  • Telephone and WiFi (supplemented)
  • Hair dryer
  • Cabinet
  • Safe deposit box
  • Wardrobe
  • Please note that all cabins will not necessarily have the same layout and surface area, nor will they be identical to the examples used in the photos

Complete cabin

8960 USD

Price for the complete cabin, fully occupied.

11200 USD

Sorry, cabin is not available

Single cabin

7616 USD

Price for the complete cabin occupied by 1 person (1.7x the shared rate).

9520 USD

Sorry, cabin is not available

Sharing berth

4480 USD

Share your cabin with others for the best price.

5600 USD

Sorry, berth is not available
More photos
HDS04-24

Twin Window

  • Cabin size between 12,1 m² and 14,3 m²
  • 1 window
  • 2 single beds
  • Small sofa
  • Private shower & toilet
  • Flatscreen TV
  • Desk & chair
  • Telephone and WiFi (supplemented)
  • Hair dryer
  • Cabinet
  • Safe deposit box
  • Wardrobe
  • Please be aware that the view from some windows might be partially obstructed due to the design requirements of the ship
  • Please note that all cabins will not necessarily have the same layout and surface area, nor will they be identical to the examples used in the photos

Complete cabin

9680 USD

Price for the complete cabin, fully occupied.

12100 USD

Sorry, cabin is not available

Single cabin

8228 USD

Price for the complete cabin occupied by 1 person (1.7x the shared rate).

10285 USD

Sorry, cabin is not available

Sharing berth

4840 USD

Share your cabin with others for the best price.

6050 USD

Sorry, berth is not available
HDS04-24

Twin Deluxe

  • Cabin size between 19,4 m² and 21,3 m²
  • 2 windows
  • 2 single beds
  • Sofa
  • Private shower & toilet
  • Flatscreen TV
  • Desk & chair
  • Telephone and WiFi (supplemented)
  • Refrigerator
  • Coffee & tea maker
  • Bathrobe
  • Hair dryer
  • Cabinet
  • Safe deposit box
  • Wardrobe

Complete cabin

10240 USD

Price for the complete cabin, fully occupied.

12800 USD

Sorry, cabin is not available

Single cabin

8704 USD

Price for the complete cabin occupied by 1 person (1.7x the shared rate).

10880 USD

Sorry, cabin is not available

Sharing berth

5120 USD

Share your cabin with others for the best price.

6400 USD

Sorry, berth is not available
HDS04-24

Superior

  • Cabin size between 20,7 m² and 21,3 m²
  • 2 windows
  • 1 double bed
  • Sofa
  • Private shower & toilet
  • Flatscreen TV
  • Desk & chair
  • Telephone and WiFi (supplemented)
  • Refrigerator
  • Coffee & tea maker
  • Bathrobe
  • Hair dryer
  • Cabinet
  • Safe deposit box
  • Wardrobe

Complete cabin

11680 USD

Price for the complete cabin, fully occupied.

14600 USD

Sorry, cabin is not available

Single cabin

9928 USD

Price for the complete cabin occupied by 1 person (1.7x the shared rate).

12410 USD

Sorry, cabin is not available
HDS04-24

Junior Suite

  • Cabin size between 19,2 m² and 20 m²
  • 1 double window
  • 1 double bed
  • Private shower & toilet
  • Flatscreen TV
  • Desk & chair
  • Telephone and WiFi (supplemented)
  • Refrigerator
  • Coffee & tea maker
  • Bathrobe
  • Hair dryer
  • Cabinet
  • Safe deposit box
  • Wardrobe

Complete cabin

13200 USD

Price for the complete cabin, fully occupied.

16500 USD

Sorry, cabin is not available

Single cabin

11220 USD

Price for the complete cabin occupied by 1 person (1.7x the shared rate).

14025 USD

Sorry, cabin is not available
HDS04-24

Grand Suite with private balcony

  • Cabin size 26,7 m²
  • 1 double window
  • 1 double bed
  • Sofa
  • Private balcony
  • Private shower & toilet
  • Flatscreen TV
  • Desk & chair
  • Telephone and WiFi (supplemented)
  • Refrigerator
  • Coffee & tea maker
  • Bathrobe
  • Hair dryer
  • Cabinet
  • Safe deposit box
  • Wardrobe

Complete cabin

14400 USD

Price for the complete cabin, fully occupied.

18000 USD

Sorry, cabin is not available

Single cabin

12240 USD

Price for the complete cabin occupied by 1 person (1.7x the shared rate).

15300 USD

Sorry, cabin is not available
Loading