Spitsbergen Explorer (RCGS Resolute)

Spitsbergen Explorer (RCGS Resolute)

From USD $8,195

Description

Spitsbergen and the Svalbard archipelago offer a tremendous wildlife and birdlife experience, as well as a fascinating lesson in glaciology. The islands are the northernmost inhabited places on the planet and would be permanently locked in ice if not for the moderating influence of the Atlantic Gulf Stream current. First used as a whaling base in the 17th and 18th centuries, the islands are now celebrated as a breeding ground for many seabirds, along with marine mammals and the elusive polar bear.

Trip Name
Spitsbergen Explorer (RCGS Resolute)
Days
12
Overview
Vessel Type: Polar Expedition Vessel Passenger Capacity: 146 Built: 1993 Named after the HMS Resolute, a British Royal Navy Arctic exploration vessel, as well as the Inuit town of Resolute in Canada’s Nunavut Territory, RCGS Resolute will arrive in Canada in November 2018 for its inaugural polar voyage. RCGS Resolute also carries the name of The Royal Canadian Geographical Society (RCGS), since we are exclusive education, environmental science, and expedition partners in Canada’s north. This longstanding partnership works to the benefit of our guests, who have the opportunity to learn from and interact with world-renowned educators, researchers, naturalists, marine biologists, artists, historians and photographers. With an unsurpassed ice classification, a proven track record for stability and safety, large indoor and outdoor viewing platforms, and exceptional maneuverability, RCGS Resolute is ideally equipped to guide guests through the world’s most pristine regions, further expanding our expertise in exploration and discovery. RCGS Resolute will carry a maximum of 146 passengers in unparalleled comfort, with an array of luxury amenities, educational opportunities and activities tailored to guests’ particular interests, and individual, personalized service.  Superb Design and Layout. Throughout the ship there are spaces ideally suited to every need. Spacious outer decks provide 360 degree viewing platforms perfect for photography, wildlife watching, birding and appreciating expansive views.  The salt water plunge pool, large relaxation deck, hot water jacuzzi are all located aft of the wellness centre (massage therapy, Finnish Sauna, steam room) and well equipped gymnasium.  Inside there are multiple areas to explore ranging from our well appointed theatre style presentation room, aft observation lounge and bar, forward observation lounge and bar, and both dining rooms. Add in the One Ocean Expeditions multimedia room, and mobile laboratory and the opportunities are endless.  Six Different Cabin Categories. All cabins feature outside viewing ranging from deck three traditional with port holes, up to decks 4 through 6 offering expansive panoramic windows.  Cabins all have lower berths that have the ability to be single beds, or 1 double bed depending on our guests needs.  Extensive renovations have provided new carpets, high quality cabinetry with soft close drawers, contemporary and spacious bathroom design, all paired with soft accent lighting offering options dependant on our guests daily activities and mood. All cabins offer modern sectional lounge quarters, providing a quiet nook to read or catch up on journalling.  Space is exceptional as each cabin offers 22M squared living space, whilst the One Ocean Suites are absolutely palatial offering 44M squared with enough room to entertain or do back - flips (your choice)! Enjoy Great Dining? So do we. At One Ocean Expeditions, the priority is on the expedition.  However with every activity, option, event, or excursion we find we build up incredible appetites to indulge in superb and extensive menu options.  Our bistro dining room provides early birds the option to get their social caffeine or smoothy start to the day, accompanied by light breakfast style snacks.  Full meal service includes buffet breakfast and lunches incorporating an international flare.  For those with special dietary requirements - no problem, we can accommodate that too.  Dinner is a great opportunity to catch up about the day’s events, as well as look to where we expect to explore next.  Five course menu options are offered a la carte, and seating is open in our business casual dining room featuring 180 degree sweeping views.  There’s also an excellent wine list featuring a range of international wines and other beverages of choice.  Join us on the Bridge. There is an open-bridge policy and guests are welcome to meet the navigating crew at virtually any time of day; there’s always something to learn from the officers on watch and the bridge is one of the best places on the ship for spotting whales and sea birds.  The bridge is closed during times of tricky navigation, pilotage, or weather. Operational Safety. There are no compromises here. The expedition staff and crew onboard RCGS Resolute have the deepest respect for changeable weather in the polar regions and the varying sea and ice conditions. That respect is apparent in every decision made throughout the voyage. The ship carries the most extensive inventory of safety equipment on all excursions and require leaders to undergo vigorous and effective safety training programs. Your expedition team are well prepared, so you can relax and enjoy your voyage.

Itinerary



Day 1 - Day 1 Longyearbyen
Today we embark our expedition ship in Longyearbyen. With almost 24 hours of daylight at this time of the year, we enjoy the views from the outer decks of the ship as we sail through Adventfjorden and into Isfjorden. Entering the vast expanse of the Greenland Sea, our ship heads south, hugging the main island of Spitsbergen.
Day 2 - Day 2 Bourbonhamna
We arrive at the southerly Bourbonhamna – well known for the beluga whales that transit the narrow sound. It is estimated there are approximately five to ten thousand belugas in the Svalbard population. We search for belugas from the ship and the zodiacs and plan our first shore excursion at Bourbonhamna. An old hunting cabin and other artefacts are points of interest during our hike to Ingebrigstenbukta. While wandering amongst these relics we hope to catch a glimpse of dozens of reindeer that inhabit the area.
Day 3 - Day 3 Storfjorden
Coming around the most southerly point of Spitsbergen, we push into the broad expanse of Storfjorden. Exploring Dolerittneset near Kapp Lee, the lush vegetation of this region is remarkable given we are at 70° North in latitude. This area has a large scattering of reindeer antlers; however, it is the plethora of ancient whalebones that makes the excursion so memorable. Time and the elements have altered their original shape and sculpted them into works of art that make fascinating photographic subjects.
Day 4 - Day 4 Hornsund
Returning to the west coast, glacier-filled bays surround us as we sail into Hornsund. With good ice conditions, we are able to navigate close to the glaciers that are a feature of the area. The entire archipelago of Svalbard is a lesson in glaciology and our onboard guides will use our hikes and zodiac cruises to explain the formation of this fantastic landscape.
Day 5 - Days 5-6 Lillie hock Glacier, Krossfjorden & Smeerenburgfjorden
The rocky shores of Krossfjorden are home to numerous bird colonies and a range of species. We anchor the ship in a protected harbour, launch the zodiacs and cruise along the bird cliffs near the 14th of July Glacier. We watch out for bearded and ringed seals in the dark waters of the fjord. Lilliehook Glacier, at the northwestern head of Krossfjorden, is an incredible sight. The glacier face stretches almost seven kilometres and is around 80 meters high. Viewed from the ship or on a zodiac cruise you come to appreciate the enormous scale of our surroundings. Sailing out of Krossfjorden and Kongsfjorden, you may be fortunate enough to see the historic airship anchor pylon near the scientific community of Ny Ålesund. This remote outpost earned its place in aviation pioneering history as a starting point for North Pole aviation exploration. Nearby, Smeerenburgfjorden has a four hundred year history of whaling and is a favorite spot as we round the northwestern tip of Spitsbergen.
Day 6 - Days 7-8 Phippsoya
We continue north and east up into the ice, hoping to cross the 80° north parallel. As we approach the ice edge the ship slows down and all hands are either on the bridge or out on the outer decks as we start scanning for wildlife. Bearded seals, ringed seals, walrus, and polar bear may be found hauled out on the edges of the ice. Our ship is perfectly designed for near silent approach and our Captain takes great pride in bringing us in close enough to experience the wildlife without disturbing it. At 81° degrees north latitude, Phippsoya is only 540 nautical miles from the North Pole. Because of its proximity to the permanent pack ice, Phippsoya offers the potential for great polar bear viewing. We have enjoyed excellent encounters with them in recent seasons in this area.
Day 7 - Day 9 Hinlopen Strait
From the ice edge we turn south into the main strait separating Svalbard’s two main islands: Spitsbergen and Nordaustlandet. In Hinlopen Strait, the bird cliffs at Alkefjellet are home to more than a hundred thousand breeding Brunnich’s guillemots, as well as thousands of kittiwakes and black guillemots. It is a spectacular site and a challenging one for our zodiacs as the tidal currents roar through Hinlopen Strait. Nearby Murchison Fjord is a wonderful place to kayak or cruise as we navigate the waterways between the islands. There are some excellent hiking routes here which take us up to high points affording staggering views and further opportunities to encounter Arctic wildlife.
Day 8 - Day 10 Liefdefjorden and Monaco Glacier
Entering Liefdefjorden we slowly cruise towards the Monaco Glacier. This vast sweep of ice more than seven kilometers wide provides a fabulous backdrop for a zodiac cruise. Miles of ice face broken up by ice caves and tumbling seracs are a sight to behold as are the thousands of black-legged kittiwakes feeding on the upwelling of rich nutrients found near the sub-glacial outflow. A morning of cruising in the ice is best followed by a hike on the tundra.
Day 9 - Day 11 Alkehornet
Alkehornet, at the mouth of Isfjord, offers breathtaking views and an incredible tundra walk as we near the end of our adventure in Svalbard. Arctic fox can often be seen here, as well as reindeer. Towering above the site is a horn-shaped mount covered in guillemots and kittiwakes. Only as we approach and stop to listen will we hear the chorus of thousands of birds, all singing at the same time.
Day 10 - Day 12 Longyearbyen
Arriving back into Longyearbyen this morning, we disembark after breakfast and say farewell to our expedition team and fellow passengers. A transfer into town is provided for those choosing to stay a few days. If you are departing today, we have a few hours this morning to explore the town, before transferring to the airport for your onward flight to Tromso or Oslo.
Day 11 - Please Note:
Itineraries are subject to change.

Trip Dates

StartEndPrice FromRoom Type
07-07-202018-07-2020USD $8,195Triple Private
07-07-202018-07-2020USD $11,895Twin Private
07-07-202018-07-2020USD $13,695Superior
07-07-202018-07-2020USD $14,095Superior Plus
07-07-202018-07-2020USD $15,195Shackleton Suite
07-07-202018-07-2020USD $17,795One Ocean Suite

Inclusions

    • The best place in the Arctic to see polar bears in their natural habitat
    • A 12-day expedition deep inside the Arctic Circle only 600 miles from The North Pole
    • Travel in the company of marine biologists, naturalists, historians and polar experts
    • Sail onboard the RCGS Resolute and access Svalbard's most spectacular sites

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