Spitsbergen & Franz Josef Land 15 days
Arctic, Russia

Spitsbergen & Franz Josef Land

Spitsbergen & Franz Josef Land 15 days aboard Sea Spirit

Venture on the unique expedition to the most remote and rarely visited Russian High Arctic archipelago - Franz Josef Land. Observe magnificent "moon" landscapes of the islands. Meet polar bears, walruses and Arctic birds in the wild. See mysterious stone spheres of Champ Island. Follow in the wake of famous Arctic explorers. Compare two Arctic archipelagoes - Spitsbergen and Franz Josef Land.

Highlights

  • Polar bears and other mammals
  • Myriad birdlife
  • Rarely visited Franz Josef Land
  • Unique geological features
  • Spectacular Svalbard scenery

What's Included

  • One night's hotel pre-voyage
  • Group transfers to and from ship
  • Full board accommodation on ship
  • All zodiac landings and excursions
  • Programme of lectures by expert guides
  • Expedition parka
  • Loan of rubber boots
  • All port fees
  • Emergency Evacuation Insurance upto US$100,000 (age limit 85 years)
14 nights 18/08/2018 - 01/09/2018
From Only £7,295pp
Gillian Landells
Gillian Landells
Arctic, Russia Specialist

Speak to someone who’s been to Arctic, Russia. Start planning your tailor-made trip by calling one of our friendly destination specialists on 0800 195 3385 or 44 1625 581143 for outside the UK.

ITINERARY

14 Nights   15 Days

Itinerary Summary

  • Day 1 | Longyearbyen
  • Day 2 | Embark and set sail
  • Days 3-4 | Crossing the Barents Sea
  • Days 5-11 | Islands of Franz Josef Land
  • Days 12-13 | Exploration of Svalbard
  • 14 | West Spitsbergen
  • Day 15 | Longyearbyen
Longyearbyen
1Day

Longyearbyen

Arrive and transfer to hotel. Spend time today exploring this remote settlement. Be sure to visit the excellent Svalbard museum.

Embark and set sail
2Day

Embark and set sail

Embark in the afternoon and set sail through Isfjorden. With virtual 24 hour daylight at this time of year, we can already be on the lookout for marine mammals.

Crossing the Barents Sea
3-4Days

Crossing the Barents Sea

We sail around the coast of Spitsbergen and the Svalbard Archipelago and cross the Barents Sea, east towards Franz Josef Land. During these long days, we keep a lookout for Bowhead and other whales and even polar bears.

Islands of Franz Josef Land
5-11Days

Islands of Franz Josef Land

We clear Russian immigration at Nagurskoye and are then free to explore this wildlife and scenery rich archipelago. Our itinerary is heavily dependent on weather and ice conditions, but we expect to see polar bears, rare whales, walrus and other marine mammals as well as massive nesting colonies of seabirds including guillemots, little auks and the threatened ivory gull. With near 24 hour daylight, there are lots of opportunities for wildlife viewing.

There are also interesting geological features, such as the stone spheres on Champ Island and basalt cliffs of Rubini Rock, as well as memorials of the many polar expeditions that passed this way.

Exploration of Svalbard
12-13Days

Exploration of Svalbard

Again, we focus heavily on wildlife viewing and hope to see polar bears and other mammals and birds throughout these days. The scenery on Spitsbergen is spectacular as we sail into deep fjords and narrow channels; there are sharp mountain peaks and calving glaciers. we look out for polar bears, walrus and seals on the ice floes and reindeer and Arctic fox on the flowering tundra. In open water, there are several species of whale to be spotted and on land the remnants of human habitation in the form of long abandoned whaling, mining and trapping camps. We visit the only place apart from Longyearbyen with regular human occupation - Ny Alesund is home to an international community of Arctic researchers.

West Spitsbergen
14Day

West Spitsbergen

After a technical stop in Longyearbyen, we explore the spectacular fjords and coasts in the western part of Svalbard. This area contains some of the archipelago’s most impressive scenery and wildlife viewing opportunities abound.

Deep fjords and narrow channels are flanked by jagged snowy mountain peaks. Fields of flowering tundra are home to grazing reindeer and Arctic fox, always on the hunt. The whole area is alive with migratory birds, including some rare species, taking advantage of summer’s fecundity in 24-hour daylight.

Among the historic sights, there are remnants of whaling camps, coal-mining operations, trappers’ cabins, staging areas for historic attempts to discover the North Pole, and the ruins of a WWII weather station.

Longyearbyen
15Day

Longyearbyen

Disembark and transfer to airport or hotel

Sea Spirit

View Vessel

What Our Customers
Say...

Ann Macleod, Scotland Sarah & David, Portsmouth James and Pamela Chapman, Halifax Geoff & Magda, Adelaide, Australia Ann & Paul, East Grinstead, Sussex Chris Janner, Manchester Gavin Burnett Stirling, United Kingdom Chris Pye, North Wales Chris Pye, North Wales Chris Conlan, Manchester, UK Boyan Todorov, Holland Karen Worton, Suffolk,UK Malcolm Green , UK Malcolm Green , UK Frances Hadfield, East Sussex, UK Mike Unwin, Brighton, UK Christine Matthews, London, UK
Superlatives abound – a truly amazing experience...awesome. Thanks to all for making it such a memorable experience.
We have just returned from our Spitsbergen trip with Wildfoot and had to tell you what an amazing time we had! We saw 6 polar bears including a mother with 2 cubs as well as whales, walruses and lots of birds. The ship (Expedition) was really comfortable and the guides were so helpful and friendly. Thank you so much for making it all so easy.
I came to Wildfoot because a friend had booked with you when you were Antarctica Bound and they were right. Everything went perfectly, even when our flight was cancelled, you made sure we still made it to the ship with time to spare. L’Austral is a beautiful ship with first class service and food and the guides looked after us well. Very happy to recommend Wildfoot and L’Austral...
We had always wanted to see the Arctic and travelling all the way from Australia needed lots of information. After getting nowhere, we came across Wildfoot and found people who knew what they were talking about! Sara and John were so helpful and made the process easy, suggesting Iceland Greenland and Spitsbergen. This was perfect for us – amazing scenery and lots of wildlife, especially the polar bears in Spitsbergen. Thanks for everything. Ps, the ship was great too!
Just wanted to say thank you for suggesting a trip to Franz Josef Land as something different for the Arctic. We had a super trip and really enjoyed the Sea Spirit. Galapagos next!
Standing on the North Pole has been an ambition of mine since childhood and now I have done it! Thank you for making the process so easy - seeing polar bears and whales too was a real bonus.
The Sea Spirit expedition was excellent and the team organising it all were extremely good. 10 out of 10. Everything went very smoothly. The Iceland extension worked perfectly, all the organisation, connections etc. were excellent
The cruise was beyond my expectations. Got to see everything the captain wanted, even a polar bear mother with three cubs. Coal Miners Cabins were smashing. I did loads of birding and exploring over three days. All the people were great from the expedition leaders down to the passengers. So glad to have achieved my ambition of some 50 years standing and got amongst the ice of the Arctic, walked amongst it’s islands and witnessed the antics of its wonderful wildlife. What’s next??? I’ll need to speak with Sara again.
Thanks so much for enabling me to get to places I had always wanted to see from a very young age. “Ace” as my boys used to say!
Just wanted to send a quick note to say thank you very much for all your help in arranging our recent trip to Svalbard. Everything ran smoothly and the trip was a great success. Unfortunately I had to flew back a few days early and missed out on Isfjord Radio, which the rest of the team said was a brilliant place with amazing food, still the Basecamp Hotel and Nordenskiold Lodge were pretty amazing places, so I’m not complaining!
Writing back to tell you that the trip to the Arctic was all that it promised and more. It was a great wild-life sightseeing opportunity and the staff were really good.I had an excellent trip and have thousands of photos to go through.
I had an absolutely fabulous time won the Sergey Vavilov, it is an excellent ship. Sara was indeed right in her recommendation that they would be the most likely to push north into the ice to find the polar bears. We even circumnavigated Spitsbergen which was awesome and not o n the itinerary.It is such a wonderful way to take a trip when you are on your own – so if any of your potential single clients are unsure, definitely recommend it – I didn’t feel alone from the moment I stepped on board. I will be at the Birdfair next weekend and so will catch up with whoever is there – regarding this trip, and potentially my next!
Great cruise, staff and expedition team. Had a great trip.
Great cruise, staff and expedition team. Had a great trip.
We had a wonderful time, even though we didn't do all the places we were supposed to but we all felt were we went instead couldn't beaten. Saw animals I wanted to see. Bit worried what the food was like as some of the ships cooking leaves something to be desired, but food was very good. We thought all the guides were brilliant and informative, friendly and knowledgeable It was far better than we expected and even my husband thoroughly enjoyed it!
I wanted to let you know that I had a wonderful cruise in the Russian Far East. The landscape and destination were inspiring, we had some excellent wildlife sightings (sea otter, grey whale, Steller's sea eagle, snowy owl and Arctic fox were all firsts for me), and the Heritage team were superb. Rough seas forced a few changes to the itinerary but we also had some fabulous weather. All in all, a thrilling travel experience.Thanks once again for all your efforts
I thought you might like to know that this was an excellent holiday. Our guide, Brad, was absolutely wonderful, his enthusiasm and knowledge made the holiday even better. All in all the whole trip was excellent and we saw lots of bears, 24 on the first day. Fewer on the second and third days but still plenty, as well as arctic foxes,silver foxes and snowy owls. Even on the last day near the town we saw a bear on rocks by the beach.

Expedition Highlights Gallery

How WILDFOOT creates your holiday Adventure

Talk to someone who knows. Our specialist consultants are here to help you every step of the way – here’s how..

1

Talk to a specialist
travel expert

Visit the wildfoot website for inspiration on your choice of adventures and destinations, then call us and speak to one of our specialists for first hand advice. We can start the planning process straight away, if you are ready.

2

Create your personal
holiday adventure

Your specialist consultant will set the ball rolling and work with you to choose the right itinerary (and the right ship, if you are going to the arctic or antarctic) just for you, to suit your requirements and budget.

3

Help right up
to departure

We will answer any questions about your trip that may arise and, when you have paid your balance (12-15 weeks prior to departure), we will send you your detailed itinerary and go through it with you.

4

...and after
departure too

We are still there for you even when you have left home – our partners overseas are there to assist, especially for emergencies and you can contact us at any time in the uk by e-mail or telephone.

WILDFOOT Wildlife & Adventure Specialist

0800 195 3385

Lines are open from 9am -5.30pm
Monday - Friday

gillian

Gillian Landells
Senior Travel Expert

text