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Spitsbergen Photography: Domain of the Polar Bear

Spitsbergen Photography: Domain of the Polar Bear

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Description

This unique 14-day voyage invites guests to embrace a true expeditionary spirit: rather than follow a set itinerary, together we’ll allow our search for polar bears and other wildlife to determine our route and shore landings in the pristine Norwegian Arctic. You’ll be experiencing this once-in-a-lifetime journey aboard our game-changing new expedition vessel, Ultramarine, which is equipped with 20 quick-launching Zodiacs, luxurious onboard amenities and extensive outer decks, including a wrap around promenade deck and balconies in most cabins mean you’ll always have access to wildlife viewings wherever they may occur. Cruising along the coast, ice edge and inner fjords of Spitsbergen, you’ll be immersed in the natural wonders of the land of the midnight sun as we pursue our quest to photograph arctic wildlife: the polar bear as it prowls the edges of the pack ice on its perpetual hunt for food; the walrus with its long tusks and distinctive whiskers; cliff-dwelling Arctic birds in the thousands; and small herds of reindeer loping across the colorful tundra. Not to mention the landscape—snow- topped mountains, massive glacier fronts, deep-walled fjords, and vast swaths of untouched tundra waiting to be photographed. Exploring this awe-inspiring region will capture you with its raw beauty.

Trip Name
Spitsbergen Photography: Domain of the Polar Bear
Days
14
Overview
Vessel Type: Expedition Ship Length: 128 metres Passenger Capacity: 199 Built: 2019-2020 Ultramarine is designed to go beyond the familiar in polar exploration, to discover new places, and to immerse you in the best the region has to offer. Equipped with two twin-engine helicopters, Ultramarine offers the most robust portfolio of adventure activities in the industry, the most spacious suites in its category, breathtaking public spaces, and more outdoor wildlife viewing spaces than other expedition ships its size. It also features an innovative mix of sustainability features that exceed all industry standards. With all this and more, Ultramarine is set to deliver the ultimate polar expedition experience. Cabin - Spacious Entryways, Personal Safes, Spa-inspired Bathrooms, Heated Bathroom Floors, Premium beds and bed linens, Convertible Beds, Individual Temperature Controls, HD Flatscreen Televisions, Oversized Windows With Sweeping Views, Electrical Supply: 220V Aboard - 2 Dining Areas, 4 Bars, Panorama Lounge, Lecture Theater, Library, Polar Boutique, Spa & Fitness Center, Oceanview Sauna, Zodiac Hangar with 4 Embarkation Points, 2 Ready Rooms with Individual Lockers, Walkaround Deck, Bridge Activities -  Flightseeing (Included), Zodiac Cruising (Included), Hiking (Included), Lectures (Included), Camping (Optional), Sea Kayaking (Optional), Stand-Up Paddleboarding (Optional), Paddle Excursions (Optional), Cross Country Skiing (Optional), Mountaineering (Optional)

Itinerary



Day 1 - Day 1 Arrive in Helsinki, Finland
Your Arctic adventure begins in Helsinki, renowned for its extraordinary architecture and intriguing mix of eastern and western influences. If you arrive early, explore the many museums, galleries and restaurants, relax at a Finnish sauna or wander the vibrant Design District before retiring at your included hotel.
Day 2 - Day 2 Fly to Longyearbyen, Svalbard and Embark
This morning, the group will transfer to the airport and board our private charter flight to Longyearbyen, Spitsbergen’s largest settlement. As your ship sets sail, enjoy your first view of the island’s rugged, glacier-topped mountains rising majestically from frigid waters.
Day 3 - Days 3 to 13 Exploring Spitsbergen
Spitsbergen is graced with an unspoiled beauty that’s just waiting to be discovered. On this one-of-a-kind cruise, you’ll sail along the west coast of this magical island, exploring the coastal fjords and smaller, outlying islands. Each day will be a surprise, treating you to spectacular new sightings and experiences. Every expedition is unique, depending on the weather and ice conditions, but we do hope to visit a few of our favorite landing sites, which will be chosen as much for their optimal wildlife-viewing opportunities as for their stunning scenery, historical significance and hiking activities. With no fixed itinerary (unusual amongst polar cruises), our main goal will be to sail in a constant search for polar bears on the prowl, based on ice and weather conditions, with the aim to maximize wildlife encounters and prioritize photographic opportunities. This means we may not move the ship every day as we do on regular voyages, especially if we find abundant wildlife in one place. Like true explorers, we’ll let the wildlife and pack ice—not a set schedule—guide our route! Presentations by onboard experts in areas of photography, history and the natural sciences will prepare you for the adventures that await, and with continuous daylight during this time of year, photo opportunities abound. You’ll have ample time to photograph any bears we are fortunate to find hunting on the ice edge, but they’re not the only wildlife we hope to encounter. The food-rich waters attract walrus, whales and seabirds, so you’ll want to keep your binoculars nearby while cruising. Arctic fox and the endemic Svalbard reindeer may also be spotted on Zodiac excursions to shore. A haven for present-day explorers, Spitsbergen and the surrounding area offer unforgettable polar experiences that will keep you and your camera active for the duration of the expedition. Although 60 percent of the landscape is covered in glaciers and much of the terrain is mountainous, Spitsbergen (which means “pointed mountains”) surprises visitors with stretches of colorful tundra that burst with wildflowers in summer, perfect for macro photography. Optional hiking activities get you up close—though never obtrusively—to the abundant wildlife. At day’s end, you’ll have plenty of prized photographs and exciting stories to share with your shipmates.
Day 4 - Day 14 Disembark in Longyearbyen and Fly to Helsinki
Your adventure ends in the frontier-style settlement of Longyearbyen. From here, we’ll transfer you to the airport for your return group charter flight to Helsinki, included in the transfer package.
Day 5 - Please Note:
Embracing the unexpected is part of the legacy – and excitement – of expedition travel. There are no guarantees that we can achieve everything we set out to accomplish. A measure of flexibility is something all of us must bring to a voyage. There are nearly 200 recognized sites in the Antarctic Peninsula and South Shetlands and the places mentioned above may be changed to others equally as interesting.

Trip Dates

StartEndPrice FromRoom Type
10-05-202423-05-2024Array Array21,000Explorer Triple. From
10-05-202423-05-2024Array Array27,500Explorer Suite. From
10-05-202423-05-2024Array Array30,100Balcony Suite. From
10-05-202423-05-2024Array Array35,400Deluxe Balcony Suite. From
10-05-202423-05-2024Array Array36,600Terrace Suite. From
10-05-202423-05-2024Array Array37,800Penthouse Suite. From
10-05-202423-05-2024Array Array53,200Ultra Suite. From
10-05-202423-05-2024Array Array0Solo Panorama. From
10-05-202423-05-2024Array Array0Owner's Suite. From

Inclusions

    • View iconic arctic wildlife, like polar bears, walrus and arctic fox
    • Enjoy continuous daylight, perfect for photography buffs
    • Cruise in a Zodiac for closer views of glaciers, fjords, icebergs and more
    • Hike the colorful arctic tundra
    • Learn techniques and tips from onboard photographer

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