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Pelorus Polar Bear Svalbard Longyearbyen

Yacht Experiences

Venture by Yacht to find the Polar Bears of Svalbard

The isolated archipelago of frozen tundra, northern lights and midnight sun; Svalbard’s imposing terrain, stark glaciers and incredible wildlife offer a diverse and unparalleled yachting expedition. You can expect intimate encounters with walrus colonies and polar bears, and for certain periods will be the most northerly people on Earth.

When to go:
March – October

Access Svalbard by flying into Longyearbyen Airport, the northernmost airport in the world, where you will board your icebreaker yacht from Longyearbyen.

There are no roads beyond Longyearbyen and so the best way to travel is via snowmobile. Experience the buzz of crossing vast open expanses and join internationally recognised experts to traverse the ice in search of arctic wildlife including polar bears, while taking part in the Norwegian Polar Institute’s project to register animals in the Arctic. Your resident expert will instruct you on how to identify and appreciate the various species you will encounter. If you identify a new animal, you will have the pleasure of naming it for future scientists and travellers.

Head ashore at Pyramiden to discover an abandoned Russian mining town, one of the finest of its kind, preserved in an eerily perfect state as some 3000 miners were told to move out overnight. With the exception of Chernobyl, there are few better examples of deserted towns anywhere in the world. In the afternoon, traverse the landscape by dog sled to reach the Research Station where you will explore the facility and meet the team of scientists investigating everything from the biodiversity of the local area to the world climate and pollution levels.

The Ultimate Adventure Playground

Climb aboard your yacht’s tender and explore the channel between Forlandet National Park and the mainland of Svalbard. Here, accompanied by naturalists, you will have the opportunity to experience a remarkably intimate encounter with the resident walrus colony and you will also take a part in monitoring these vulnerable animals.

Drop the anchor at Ny-Alesund, the ultimate adventure playground. Kayak amongst icebergs the size of houses and hike up colossal glaciers; abseil into deep crevasses. Journey to 81 degrees north to the most northerly point possible for a yacht to reach, and BBQ on the pack ice in utter seclusion, this is also the hunting ground for polar bears, as seals sleep on the broken ice.

Cruise to Klerckbukta, a vast ice shelf, and explore the hundreds of water columns cascading from the wall of ice into the sea. For a closer glimpse, take a kayak or paddle board over to the base of these magnificent glacial waterfalls. You can opt to get closer still as Pelorus dive masters lead a dry-suit diving excursion, allowing you to witness the vast scale of the ice-shelf below the water for a truly unique Arctic experience.

Longyearbyen Svalbard Artic Fox Wildphoto Pyramiden Svalbard Abandoned Town Pelorus
Longyearbyen Svalbard Glacier wildphoto Longyearbyen Svalbard Polar Bears Wildphoto

Once-in-a-Lifetime Experiences

At Woodfjorden, inspect the abandoned whalers’ cabins on foot for a glimpse into the lives of the men who spent large periods of time in these isolated little wooden structures. Spend some time climbing the glaciers and have lunch on a remote spot overlooking the fjord.

Voyage into the glacial valleys and wide fjords of Walenbergfj. With any luck, you may spot some polar bears from the yacht deck. Disembark onto your yacht’s tender and make for the shore, where a guide will take you ski touring on virgin slopes. Prepare to take backcountry skiing to a whole new level, with vast expanses of untouched snow you can pick your own lines down the mountain.

Cruise to Wijdefjorden, a steep cliff made up of basaltic pillars which rise vertically from the waters of the Hinlopen Strait. This is the home of Brunnich’s guillemots, where the sound and spectacle of so many birds in one place is truly astonishing. Expect to spot glaucous gulls looking for a meal, as well as polar bears and arctic foxes hunting nearby. A dive master will lead you underwater in dry-suits to watch guillemots smashing into the water at great speeds to catch fish – this really is a once-in-a-lifetime experience.