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HDS01-22, trip log, North Spitsbergen, Arctic Spring - Hiking Special

by Oceanwide Expeditions


Day 1: Embarkation, Longyearbyen

Embarkation, Longyearbyen
Date: 26.05.2022
Position: 78°13.7’ N, 015°36.1’
Wind: E6
Weather: Partly Cloudy
Air Temperature: +8

As the bridge team skilfully manoeuvred our ship away from the harbour wall in Longyearbyen we could not have wished for better conditions. The snow-covered mountains were reflected in the glassy, calm waters and warm sunshine was pouring in through the Observation Lounge windows. Once the newly embarked guests had been given room keys and reunited with their luggage at their cabins it was time for the mandatory ship safety briefing. Expedition Leader Eduardo, Hotel Manager William and Chief Officer Diederik provided us with vital information regarding the lovely ship that would be our home for the next week. Dr Arne Mosch also introduced himself, reassuring guests with his presence on board for any medical assistance required. During the safety briefing members of the Expedition Team demonstrated putting on life jackets and showed the floatation suits, both of which are stored within cabins for use in an emergency situation. After the briefing we had to put our newfound safety knowledge to use in a drill; the bridge crew sounded an abandon ship alarm and we all dutifully made our way to our muster stations, either in the Observation Lounge (station B) or Restaurant (station A). Once all guests had arrived and been checked for correct life jacket fastening, we proceed to the lifeboat boarding area on deck 6. Depending on our muster station, we were directed to a lifeboat on either port or starboard side and given further information by Second Officer Kirill Buriachek. Our bird list had already accumulated a few species including Black Guillemot, Northern Fulmar, Common Eider and Black-legged Kittiwake. With the calm conditions guests and staff alike were hopeful we might also see some whales whilst transitting away from Longyearbyen along Isfjord (ice fjord). We then had a short break before reconvening in the Observation Lounge for the welcome briefing. The information given by our Expedition Leader and Hotel Manager was very useful, but we were undeniably distracted by the incredible scenery passing by outside! We all continued to enjoy these views during dinner which followed shortly after the welcome briefing; a delicious buffet meal provided by head chef Ralf and his galley team, served by our friendly and attentive dining room stewards. Out third and final briefing of the evening covered the regulations of AECO (the Association of Arctic Expedition Cruise Operators) which must be adhered to during our cruise. These cover matters such as how closely we can approach wildlife, how we should respectfully behave towards the beautiful Arctic environment and polar bear safety. The Expedition Team also took this opportunity to introduce themselves. After so much information over the course of the evening most people headed to bed. Those still awake were rewarded with the astonishing sight of a Blue Whale (the largest species, reaching up to 33m long) close to the ship on the port side! At first this appeared to be just one animal, but then a second blow was seen (the plume of spray as these ocean giants exhale). Later a much small species, a Minke Whale (up to 10m long) was also observed passing quickly by the ship.

Day 2: Lilliehöökbreen and Ny-Ålesund

Lilliehöökbreen and Ny-Ålesund
Date: 27.05.2022
Position: 79° 02.2’ N, 011°34.0’ E
Wind: N/NW2
Weather: Overcast
Air Temperature: +7

We awoke to our first full day on board to enjoy a leisurely breakfast and an even more leisurely cruise down the fjord to the Lilliehöökbreen Glacier. Although Eduardo, having visited this area many times, explained that the glacier front had retreated considerably over the recent past, those of us visiting for the first time we could only be struck by the sheer enormity. Not the highest of glaciers, but immensely wide and filling the valley off into its distant source, far out of our sight. The water in front of the glacier was full of pieces of ice, large and small, and many hues of blue and white. They sparkled like jewels floating on the glass-like water as the sun shone down from a beautiful blue sky. A dark orange-brown body on a small ice floe was identified as a Walrus and then two more bodies, not far away, turned out to be Bearded Seals. Through good binoculars or a telescope, it was possible to make out the impressive whiskers that give this animal its name. A gorgeous pair of Red-throated Divers in full breeding plumage also provided a flyover. It is hard to think of a better introduction to Arctic Svalbard! We sailed away to reposition Hondius for the afternoon’s activities with several more briefings followed by lunch. Action then commenced with our first multi-location shore landing. First off were the 11 skiers and their two expert guides to be landed at Tønsneset. Then another reposition to land all the remaining guests by zodiac on the pontoon at the famous settlement of Ny-Ålesund. Everyone had a chance to wander into the centre to spend time (and money!) in the shop and maybe visit the museum. All around us was the song and sight of delightful Snow Buntings. Then we split into two groups to explore beyond the settlement, protected by the guide team armed with rifles. One group had a short walk to a nearby mast. This huge mast was once housed within a huge hanger and was used to suspend an airship (aka zeppelin). The hanger was removed but the mast remains as a relic to this incredible era of exploration. The second group went for a more energetic hike in snowshoes across the lower slopes of the mountains behind Ny-Ålesund. Like this morning the weather was fine, even warm, and everyone enjoyed their second introduction of the day – landing and feeling the ground of Svalbard beneath their feet. Wildlife collectively seen included Reindeer, Ringed Plover, Barnacle Geese, Redshank and two more Red-throated Divers. A number of Arctic Terns were seen and one of the local residents reported that they had only returned just yesterday from their incredible migration from south of the equator. Back on Hondius we met for cocktails with Captain Artur Yakovlev who welcomed us aboard and told us a little about the vessel that he is obviously so proud to command.

Day 2: Lilliehöökbreen: Tønsneset, Ski Log

Lilliehöökbreen: Tønsneset, Ski Log
Date: 27.05.2022

After a morning cruising alongside Lillehöökbreen, we moved on to off Tønsneset and embarked the Zodiacs for our first ski tour of the week. It was also a first ski tour on Svalbard for me so doubly exciting. We had 11 guests in all, all very experienced ski tourers, one of whom was also a qualified ski guide, so we felt well within acceptable margins of safety. Nevertheless, we carefully scouted the beach for polar bears before landing. Happily, there were none, though we spotted the unmistakable tracks in the gravel within 100m of setting off towards the first snow. The snow itself was very rotten low down, due to the high temperatures. Massimo,, who has over fifty Svalbard ski tours under his belt said he’d never seen temperatures like it. We had to take skis on and off several times on the long valley leading northeast behind Nordvågfjellet, before getting on the glacier that led us northwest towards the summit of Olssønfjellet, our target for the day at over 900m above the Arctic Ocean. The views from the top were sensational, with the added bonus of zero wind. The ski down the glacier was surprisingly amenable on quality spring snow that needed a firm approach. Once we hit the toe of the glacier at around 250m, the snow turned to soup again: it was combat skiing along the valley, with skis on and off multiple times before Massimo’s cunning found us a continuous strip of snow to get us within 100m of the waterline and a short walk back to the landing site where the Zodiacs had been waiting patiently for us for 5 hours. The whole trip was rounded off nicely by a seal checking us out as we loaded skis back onto the Zodiacs. As the guests were making their way back to Hondius, one discovered his camera was missing. A short walk up the beach and the miracle happened – we found it. Memories of a trip come a close second to the actual experience itself. Achieving the summit is a great credit to the guests considering the warm weather, the paucity of snow and its appalling quality in some spots.

Day 3: Magdalenefjord: Gullybukta and Gravsneset

Magdalenefjord: Gullybukta and Gravsneset
Date: 28.05.2022
Position: 79°33.9’ N, 010°57.9’ E
Wind: Variable
Weather: Sunny
Air Temperature: +10

We woke up under a bright blue sky with beautiful sunshine and the Expedition team already preparing the day ahead. While some of the staff were scouting for polar bear from the bridge, others were planning the ski and hiking route. At 7:30am we were called for breakfast and, whilst eating, we were admiring the stunning landscape that Magdalenefjorden had to offer. Towering dark mountain peaks, up to 900m high surrounded us. They were mostly covered with snow but signs of spring were also evident where green patches of mosses and lichens were growing on areas of exposed rock. At 8:30am we were invited to meet at the shell door to board the zodiacs and get to our first real Arctic landing at Gullybukta. We went on a small hike that took us to a Walrus haul out on the beach. These giant beasts were sleeping in the sun, one on top of each other. It looked quite enjoyable to do nothing and just enjoy the sun, we were a bit jealous! It did appear a little too warm for the blubbery walruses though; they were fanning themselves with their flippers and covering their faces from the bright sunshine. Groups of passengers were taken in turn to see these animals and then enjoyed a zodiac cruise around part of the fjord to observe a Little Auk nesting colony, watching these little black and white birds whizzing past us. Other birds seen in the area included Black Guillemot and Common Eider. A Harbour Seal (aka Common Seal) was also encountered resting on ice. The morning went by very quickly and soon we were back on the ship for lunch. The dining room was buzzing with excitement as we discussed our morning outing with our fellow passengers. We started the afternoon with another zodiac cruise. During the cruise we went back to the walrus but now to photograph them from the water giving a different perspective. We counted approximately 35 of them sleeping, all adult males, and we marvelled at their huge tusks! After that, we went to a nearby glacier front. This was evidently very active, evidenced by lots of impressive crevasses. After the zodiac cruise we went to Gravsneset for a 2-3km hike. With the weather still very warm it wasn’t long into the hike before everyone was taking off layers! At the top of the ridge we had a nice view of the fjord, the glacier front and Hondius. It looked like a perfect post card image and we had to pinch ourselves to make sure it was reality and not a dream. Back on board everyone met in the lounge for the daily recap, excitedly chatting about the beautiful day we had shared. At 18:15pm Eduardo, our Expedition Leader, revealed the plants for tomorrow. He was followed by Hazel talking about walrus, Meike about Little Auks and Andy about skiing in Svalbard. The day ended with a delicious dinner prepared by our favorite chef Ralf and beer at the bar served by Rolando and John, our lovely bartenders. Just as we thought it was time to go to bed, Eduardo announced a polar bear sighting on the PA system! Even though the animal was far away on the brash ice in front of a glacier it was exciting to see one in the flesh in the soft evening light. What a great end to this wonderful day! Expedition Staff kept a lookout throughout the night but the bear slept all the way through, mainly hidden from view by a large piece of ice, and barely moved. However, a consolation for being awake and on watch in the small hours of the morning was the beautiful light and a Minke whale feeding nearby.

Day 3: Magdalenafjord: Adamsbreen, Ski Log

Magdalenafjord: Adamsbreen, Ski Log
Date: 28.05.2022

Arriving in Magdalenafjord, one thing was clear – there had been many medium sized avalanches in the area. A careful scout revealed a manageable possibility in the Adamsbreen. We skinned up towards an unnamed summit just under 600m high. This involved some careful avalanche risk management, and we were rewarded with great views from the summit and an excellent ski back down on soft spring snow.

Day 4: Fugleholmane & BBQ Night

Fugleholmane & BBQ Night
Date: 29.05.2022
Position: 79°46.2’ N, 011°26.8’ E
Wind: S5
Weather: Clear Skies
Air Temperature: +10

Yesterday´s polar bear, the first of the trip, was sadly not re-sighted by the expedition team during their night time/early morning watch from the bridge of the Hondius. Nevertheless, the morning brought us a wonderful breakfast, a sunny day and calm waters for a morning zodiac cruise in the fjord. Today’s location for our exploration was the fjord of the birds (Fuglefjorden). Roaming through the skerries and broken sea ice we found the first birds who had returned to land for the summer after a winter spent at sea. For them, spring is time for mating, making their nests and rearing their chicks. Noisy Black-legged Kittiwake screeched by, we saw Black Guillemots diving, paddling hard with their bright red legs, and two species of Eider ducks: the Common Eider and the magnificent King Eider! We were also treated to great views of Bearded Seal and could even hear them singing! The males make remarkable trills and whistles underwater to attract females. In the afternoon we headed North into a nearby fjord Sallyhamna which is named after the wife of a famous hunter. Sally and Waldemar Kræmer stayed in this area for some years in the mid-20th century, hunting and trapping animals for their fur pelts, and the hut they used is visible on the shoreline. Excited though we were to visit the hut and explore ashore, the scouting team reported polar bear tracks heading southwards from the hut which looked very fresh. Our Expedition Team scouters did not see a polar bear but a nearby sailing vessel reported they had just seen one nearby. That being the case our landing had to be aborted and so we returned to Hondius where guests were provided with a fascinating presentation from Assistant Expedition Leader Sara about polar bears. She described the ‘King of the Arctic’ and its incredible adaptations for surviving in the conditions of the extreme north. This was followed by an equally fantastic lecture regarding geology by Expedition Guide Laura. She told the unbelievable journey of Svalbard’s rocky landmass throughout history to the present day. Later at the daily recap Expedition Leader Eduardo gave further insight into polar bears and particularly the difficulty of spotting them, showing images proving how capable they are of playing ‘hide and seek’ in their environment, despite being very large creatures. We then heard about the activities that awaited us for the following day, including a cruise into the pack ice, hiking and of course a landing for the skiers! Koen also gave a recap regarding the evolution of whales. It’s fair to say that everyone was surprised to hear the java mouse deer, the smallest deer species in the world, is a very distant relative to the biggest animal ever, the blue whale. After recaps, thanks to the restaurant and hotel staff, we were treated to a wonderful barbeque on the outside deck. We enjoyed delicious food, fresh Artic air and views of the stunning landscape of Spitsbergen. For those with energy left to spare there was music and dancing until later in the evening – with daylight hours round the clock it is hard to know when exactly to go to bed! Day 4: 29th May 2022 Fuglepynten Ski Log Massimo and Andy went on an early scouting mission towards Fuglepynten. Unfortunately, the coastline proved to be very rocky, making landing very problematic. In addition, the sea in the area was very exposed to the southwesterly wind with a significant swell. This was forecast to increase in the afternoon, so we took a decision to abort the ski for the day. On exiting Fuglefjord the wind was measured at 28 knots gusting to 35, so it proved to be a good call.

Day 5: Ice Edge, 80° North and Danskeneset

Ice Edge, 80° North and Danskeneset
Date: 30.05.2022
Position: 79°58.5’ N, 011°36.4’ E
Wind: S/SW6
Weather: Part Cloudy
Air Temperature: +8

Hondius had sailed through the night to a position just north of the archipelago of Svalbard, to achieve two targets. Our first was to cross the latitude line of 80 degrees North, which we did at 23:08pm on the 30th May 2022. This is a position not many people can say they have crossed because it is so far north. Also, we had left all remaining land to our south and the north pole was now just 1,111 nautical miles dead ahead of us, as the Captain pointed the ship in that direction. However, to get there from this point you would have to overcome an immense frozen sea. The border of this sea, the edge of the pack ice, was our second target for the day and guests were very excited as this came slowly into view. At its southern edge the ice is broken up by the combined action of the energetic sea and the warming temperatures of the coming summer. At 08:45am Captain Artur turned Hondius into the ice and we able to spend nearly two hours of cruising in this magical environment. We looked back to the iconic mountains of northern Spitsbergen and gazed forward towards the ice locked, northern pole of planet earth. From early morning, with guests still asleep in their cabins, the expedition team had been scouting for polar bears, which hunt seals among the pack ice. Despite the good visibility and a significant number of eyes glued to binoculars and telescopes, we were unable to spot the proverbial ‘needle in a hay stack’; a white bear in a white wilderness! At 12:00 noon we had to leave the ice to turn south towards Danskeneset and our afternoon activities. On the way, Syzmon gave a very appropriate and interesting presentation on the subject of sea ice. As we entered the fjord at Danskeneset, Eduardo set out Plan A for the afternoon which was dependent on the wind dropping from its current speed for safe zodiac launching. However, we were overtaken by events that were definitely not weather related. The Noorderlicht, a sailing ship which was anchored nearby, had sighted polar bears on the shore. The expedition leaders assessed the position and invited guests to the outside decks to observe the animals that so many were desperate to see. Whilst this was happening a plan was put together to take launch the zodiacs to take guests to see the bears (from a safe distance and in accordance with Association of Artic Expedition Cruise Operator guidelines of course). From the zodiacs we could see a large male (pictured right) on the ice and a female in the water on the other side of the fjord. We had also heard a report that the female had one or maybe two cubs with her. As the male ambled away the female was heard bellowing loudly, both in and out of the water. She was behaving frantically, moving into and out of the water repeatedly. Eventually she left the water and the reason for her distress became apparent as and we witnessed her pull both cubs out of the water. Sadly, it appeared that both were unresponsive, presumed dead. Back on Hondius the expedition team set about trying to work out what had just happened. Guests who had stayed on board and watched the whole event unfold through binoculars described what they had seen. Initially, the male was separated the cubs from their mother and chased them up a steep snow slope. The cubs then descended onto a spit of land and entered the water. Their mother joined them and together all three attempted a long swim across the bay. The cubs were observed trying, but failing, to climb out of the water. Devastatingly, it appears they became exhausted and drowned. Everyone gathered in the lounge to hear Sara give a recap regarding what had unfolded, including photographic evidence of the story, and supported one another in coming to terms with this difficult sighting. It cannot be denied that it was a very emotionally challenging experience but everyone also accepted that it was a part of the rich tapestry of the natural world. This would have happened whether we had been there to witness it or not. Expedition Leader Eduardo reported this sighting and information of the incident to the relevant authorities; as the female had a tracking collar fitted and a number ‘33’ clearly marked on her rump they should be able to identify her fairly quickly from their records.

Day 5: Brattekleivbreen Ski Log

Brattekleivbreen Ski Log
Date: 30.05.2022

While the ski guests were having a fantastic opportunity to observe polar bears, the guides scouted the landing for Brattekleivbreen on the opposite side of the fjord. When the party returned, they exchanged long lenses for skis, and we set off from the beach around 1830. Two hours of climb brought us to the summit at 620m. The ski down on perfect spring snow was amazing. What an incredible day: pack ice, polar bears and skiing.

Day 6: Amsterdamøya, Danskøya and Smeerenburg

Amsterdamøya, Danskøya and Smeerenburg
Date: 31.05.2022
Position: 79°46.1’ N, 010°57.5’ E
Wind: N/NE 2
Weather: Partly Cloudy
Air Temperature: +3

A full day of activity was planned which demanded an early-wake-up call which came as ever from Expedition Leader Eduardo. Today we got the feeling that spring was coming and snow was melting; how thankful we were to have our rubber boots as we were required to walk through the meltwater! Of course, as intrepid explorer we accepted these conditions with a smile on faces throughout visits to the islands of Amsterdamøya and Danskøya today! At this time of year the tundra is relieved from the cloak of snow and ice which covers it over the winter. Great Skua and Purple Sandpiper were observed engaging in courtship behaviour, a precursor to nesting and egg laying. Red-throated divers and Atlantic Puffin were also seen, the latter always being a favourite with guests due to their ‘cute’ and colourful appearance. Alongside the bird life it was a day for exploring history. In the afternoon we visited the historic Dutch whaling settlement of Smeerenburg (meaning ‘blubber town’) which used to be home to two hundred inhabitants and numerous blubber overns used for boiling down whale flesh to obtain oil. In addition to this, further historical interest was provided nearby when we undertook a zodiac cruise to Virgohamna to see the remains of a structure used to support a huge hydrogen balloon used by Swedish engineer/physicist, Salomon August Andrée, along with Knut Frænkel and Nils Strindberg, in an attempt to reach the North Pole in 1897. A harsh, cold wind blew in as the afternoon progressed; after days of warm sunshine this gave a stark realisation that we truly were in the far north. Guests who undertook a short walk and zodiac cruise were safely back on ship, but those who had participated in the longer hike were still ashore. It was decided to pick them up from an alternative point so they did not have so far to go in the cold, but waves were heightening and shallow water with many rocks made this challenging. With careful manoeuvring everyone was brought into the zodiacs and returned to Hondius. A wonderful dinner awaited us followed by some stories at the bar afterwards. Thank you to everyone, today and on other landings, who has helped us to collect some of the plastic and other rubbish that has been littering the shores of Spitsbergen.

Day 6: Smeerenbukta, Ski Log

Smeerenbukta, Ski Log
Date: 31.05.2022

We awoke to a cloud ceiling at 250m – not great for skiing, but went and scouted a landing landed at Smeerenbukta just in case and set off towards the Hollanderberget. The flat ground before the slope itself was pretty wet, and muck boots were useful for the first few hundred meters. One we hit the slope, we swopped these for ski boots and continued up the Hiertabreen. The weather got better and better and we summited in perfect visibility and a light north easterly. We then skied down the Annabreen – more amazing spring snow, then reascended to the summit before skiing the Hiertabreen down to the shore. However, the day’s adventures were not over. We had had landed in a fairly calm sea state, but now it was quite choppy. It took some great efforts from Eduardo and Claudio in the Zodiacs to get us off shore and back to Hondius. There were some wet feet among both guests and guides alike but everyone got safely back on board. Well done everyone!

Day 7: St Johnsfjorden

St Johnsfjorden
Date: 01.06.2022
Position: 79°46.1’ N, 010°57.5’ E
Wind: E4
Weather: Overcast
Air Temperature: +6.5

Our final full day around Svalbard started with everyone being shuttled to shore by zodiac before splitting up into various groups. The skiers were planning to be out all day and the rest of us set off to undertake different routes, distance and gradients to suit our individual needs and abilities. Near to the landing site we were able visit an old tracker’s hut that is still usable. Unsurprisingly basic inside, nonetheless it could provide adequate protection to preserve life. Those of us who were feeling energetic hiked upwards through the tranquil fiord with beautiful surroundings. This was a little bit different from our first few days in the north because there was much less snow around. Due to this fact we had a different landscape to walk on with many more plants and flowers growing which was very interesting to see. We also observed many beautiful and different types of rocks. The trail ended at a high point where we could see a glacier coming down in a frozen sea filled with pack ice. An incredible hike filled with a sense of adventure and exploration. The wildlife encounters of all the various groups racked up a number of good species including Bearded Seal, Reindeer, Arctic Terns, Arctic Skuas, Pink-foot Goose and chattering groups of Purple Sandpiper. But the bird that stole the show was the Rock Ptarmigan, still resplendent in its stunning white winter plumage. They were high up on the slopes but could picked out fairly easily with binoculars but the hikers who went up into their territory really got the best seats in the house for their efforts! All the walks converged on the landing site - to start the trip back directly back to Hondius or take part in the (infamous) ‘Polar Plunge’. About 20 hardy souls in their swim suits braved a chilly dip into arctic waters accompanied by shrill screams and gasps of surprise. After a warming lunch the zodiacs were launched for a final cruise around to view the Gaffelbreen Glacier, front on, that we had seen on the walks that morning. The whole bay was blocked by an ice sheet where several Bearded Seals were seen lying out, with two in open water diving under the ice sheet to feed. We then cruised towards the massive glacier at the end of St. Johnsfjorden, again blocked by ice. And then the final delightful surprise: a zodiac full of hotel and expedition staff armed with hot chocolate, cream and rum! Back on Hondius we gathered for a final time to join the Captain’s farewell party with cocktails and to view Expedition Photographer Juan’s superb slideshow. This was made available to all afterwards to be copied and taken home as a unique memento of an incredible expedition trip.

Day 7: Bullbreen, Ski Log

Bullbreen, Ski Log
Date: 01.06.2022

On arriving in St John’s Fjord, we scouted and found that the intended landing sites on the north shore were iced in. We transferred to the south shore and found an excellent landing spot near Bullbreen. Returning with the guests, we skinned up the west summit of Holmlesletfjella. The views were stupendous from its top at 692m. The snow on the way down was pretty sticky after the first 300m, and we were very happy to arrive at the shore and see a harbour seal checking us out while we waited for the zodiacs back to Hondius. The floating bar of hot chocolate with rum was an amazing way to round off the week. Thanks everyone for a great week of skiing!

Day 8: Longyearbyen - Disembarkation

Longyearbyen - Disembarkation
Date: 02.06.2022
Position: 78°14.0’ N, 015°37.2’ E
Wind: NW2
Weather: Partly Cloudy
Air Temperature: +8

After seven fantastic days and nights on our Arctic adventure, a final wake-up call was made at 7:00am by Expedition Leader Eduardo. With luggage outside cabins ready for collection it was time for our last breakfast on board M/V Hondius. After that everyone had one final exhilarating ride in the zodiacs to get back to Longyearbyen before saying farewell to our ship and crew; the trip was over but the memories made will surely last a lifetime! Thank you all for travelling with us on this voyage; for your enthusiasm, support and good company. We very much hope to see you again in the future, wherever that might be! Total distance sailed on our voyage: 659.5 nautical miles Furthest North: 80°09.709’ N, 12°46.452’ E On behalf of Oceanwide Expeditions, Captain Artur Iakovlev, Expedition Leader Eduardo Rubio Herrera, Hotel Manager William Barnes and all the crew and staff of M/V Hondius, it has been a pleasure travelling with you.


Tripcode: HDS01-22
Dates: 26 May - 2 Jun, 2022
Duration: 7 nights
Ship: m/v Hondius
Embark: Longyearbyen
Disembark: Longyearbyen

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

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