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Franz Josef Land: Sea Spirit

Venture on the unique expedition to the remotest 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 High Arctic archipelagoes – Spitsbergen and Franz Josef Land.

Early Booking Offer 2018

Save between 10% (Triple, Main & Classic Suites) and 15% (all other categories) for 2018 departures. Use the Promocodes SPX10 or SPX15 during the booking process.

  • Spectacular coasts, fjords and glaciers of Spitsbergen
  • Rare chance to visit one of the most remote Arctic destinations, Franz Josef Land
  • Incredible rock formations and moon-like landscapes
  • Arctic wildlife such as polar bears, walrus and seals
  • Huge concentrations of birdlife
  • The luxury expedition vessel Sea Spirit

Day 1. Longyearbyen (West Spitsbergen, Svalbard) Welcome to Longyearbyen, the administrative capital of the Norwegian territory of Svalbard and starting point of our expedition. After arriving via scheduled commercial flight service, you are free to explore this fascinating Arctic settlement. Be sure to see the excellent Svalbard Museum and take advantage of quality shopping and dining opportunities in the town center. Your hotel for the night has been arranged by us and is included in the price of the voyage. Day 2. Embarkation in Longyearbyen In the afternoon we welcome you aboard the luxury expedition ship M/V Sea Spirit. Explore the ship and get comfortable in your home away from home for the extraordinary adventure to come. Savor the anticipation of your Arctic dreams coming true as we slip our moorings and sail into a true wilderness where wildlife abounds. The scenery as we sail through Isfjorden on our first evening is spectacular and there is already the possibility of marine mammal encounters. Day 3-4. Across the Barents Sea From Isfjorden we proceed forthwith around Svalbard and east to Franz Josef Land across the Barents Sea. In these far northern latitudes it is possible to encounter sea ice any time of the year. All along the way we remain vigilant for sightings of ice-dependent marine mammals such as the elusive bowhead whale, various Arctic seal species, and the majestic polar bear. Day 5-11. Exploration of Franz Josef Land This is expedition cruising at its most authentic. As such, our route and exploration opportunities in Franz Josef Land are heavily dependent on weather and sea ice conditions. Our experienced captain and expedition leader decide the itinerary and continually adjust plans as conditions and opportunities warrant. You can be sure that the best possible advantage will be taken of the circumstances presented to us by Nature in this wild and remote corner of the Arctic. Between obligatory initial and final stops at the Russian polar station Nagurskoye in wildlife-rich Cambridge Bay, we are free to explore the many waterways and islands of this unique Arctic wilderness in whatever way best suits the conditions we encounter. The archipelago, part of the Russian Arctic National Park since 2012, is a nature sanctuary. Polar bears and other quintessential High Arctic wildlife—such as walruses and some rare whale species—can be spotted anytime, anywhere in and around Franz Josef Land. Scree slopes and cliffs around the islands host enormous nesting colonies of migratory seabirds such as guillemots, dovekies, and ivory gulls. We take advantage of 24-hour daylight to exploit every opportunity for wildlife viewing. Franz Josef Land is also home to some interesting geological features, such as the mysterious stone spheres on Champ Island. Collectors of geographical extremes may take note that Cape Fligely on Rudolf Island is the northernmost point of land in the Eastern Hemisphere. Franz Josef Land also offers visitors the opportunity to walk in the footsteps of famous polar explorers at well-preserved historical sites. The journals of explorers such as Julius von Payer, Benjamin Leigh Smith, Frederick George Jackson, and Fridtjof Nansen come alive at Cape Norway, Cape Flora, Eira Harbour, and Cape Tegetthoff. Memorials, monuments, crosses, and the remains of dwellings are testimony to incredible historical events that are further illuminated by our expert lecturers. Tikhaya Bukhta is currently a Russian Arctic National Park ranger station occupying Soviet-era research buildings and was also a major base for polar expeditions. Nearby the fascinating columnar basalt cliffs of Rubini Rock are home to thousands of nesting seabirds. Day 12-13. Back across the Barents Sea After our amazing time in Franz Josef Land we cross back through the bountiful waters of the Barents Sea. Presentations and workshops by our expert staff, as well as our range of onboard recreation facilities, ensure that these days at sea are not idly spent. Seabird viewing and whale sightings can be enjoyed from panoramic open decks as well as exterior stateroom windows and balconies. Day 12-13. On the way back to Longyearbyen. Again our activities on the way back to Longyearbyen depend on weather and ice conditions and real schedule of the expedition. If we have time and good weather conditions we plan to visit the following sites: We plan a landing at Phippsøya, the largest one of Seven Islandsarchipelago at the north of Spitsbergen. The island and nearby region is a great place for walrus photography and a favourite hunting area of polar bears. We land at Fuglehuken on Prins Karls Forland Island. This island was the first Spitsbergen land sighted by the discoverer of the archipelago Willem Barents. It was him who gave Fuglehuken its name which means “Bird point”. To do justice to the name large numbers of Brunich’s guillemots, kittiwakes, glaucous gulls and other birds breed on steep cliffs; while harbour seals, the only population found in Spitsbergen, rest along the coast. The island was favoured by whalers and polar bear hunters; we will see their traces here. Poolepynten is a headland on the south-eastern side of Prins Karls Forland, known as a walrus haul-out. During our landing here get your camera ready — this is a great place for walrus photography. Day 14-15. Exploration of Svalbard After a technical stop in Longyearbyen, we begin our exploration of Svalbard. As this is a true High Arctic wilderness, this part of the voyage is also a real expedition. Our route and exploration opportunities are heavily dependent on the weather and sea ice conditions we encounter. Again you can be sure that our experienced captain and expedition leader will take advantage of every opportunity to allow us to experience excellent wildlife viewing, to appreciate amazing scenery, and to go ashore in this amazing place. We anticipate exploring the spectacular fjords, coasts, and islands in the northwestern part of Svalbard. This area contains the archipelago’s most impressive scenery and some of the Arctic’s best wildlife viewing opportunities. Deep fjords and narrow channels are flanked by jagged snowy mountain peaks. Immense tidewater glaciers calve icebergs into turquoise waters. On ice floes and on fast ice several species of seals watch vigilantly for polar bears, which can be spotted anytime, anywhere in and around Svalbard. Fields of flowering tundra are home to grazing reindeer and playful Arctic fox. Bountiful inshore and offshore waters are home to walrus and a wide variety of whales. The whole area is alive with migratory birds, including numerous rare species, taking advantage of summer’s fecundity in 24-hour daylight. To complete the Arctic experience we also explore sites rich with history. Our area of exploration contains the historical 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. Human habitation in this area can be found only at Ny Ålesund, a former mining town that is now home to an international community of Arctic researchers. This is one of the world’s most northerly settlements, complete with museum, gift shop, and post office. Day 14. Disembarkation in Longyearbyen (West Spitsbergen, Svalbard). After breakfast we say farewell in the town of Longyearbyen, where we started. We provide a transfer to the airport or to the town center if you wish to spend more time here. As you look back on your wonderful experience in Svalbard, you may already be looking forward to your next incredible adventure to the ice!

Luxury Expedition Ship M/S Sea Spirit

Luxury Expedition Ship M/S Sea Spirit

Sail aboard the remarkably comfortable Sea Spirit and experience the polar regions in grand style with spacious suites. Carrying a maximum of 112 passengers this outstanding vessel, approved for polar waters, is equipped with rubber inflatable boats - called Zodiacs- for shore transfers and cruising. Kayaking and camping options are available on select departures. All suites have facilities en suite and exterior views. Deluxe Suites, Premium Suites and the Owner's Suite have private balconies for viewing the breathtaking landscapes of the Arctic, Antarctica, South Georgia and the Falklands. Cruise with all the comfort of home - king-size beds (twin beds for those who prefer them), an open bar, balconies and a hot tub. Plus enjoy the amenities of a fine hotel, while a resident photographer helps you take brag-worthy photos.

For full information about this vessel click here...

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Dates, Costs & Booking

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Date Selected: 14th Aug 2017


Adult (1) US$8995
Sub total US$8995

Expedition Options

Name Description Price
Kayaking (Sea Spirit) The polar regions are a paddlers’ paradise. Whether in the Arctic or Antarctic you can experience some of the world’s most impressive landscapes and incredible marine wildlife from an unique perspective! Sea Kayak Club members will have the opportunity to paddle through tranquil waters filled with glittering icebergs and marine animals while surrounded by magnificent glaciers and mountains. US$595

Essential Information

Deposits - Reservations require a deposit of 20% per person at the time you receive a booking confirmation from Expeditions Online. A payment link will be sent to you and this may be paid by major credit card. Bookings within 90 days of departure require full payment. Voyage rates are quoted in U.S. dollars and are based on passengers sharing a cabin. Rates are based on anticipated fuel costs at the time of departure multiplied by a maximum daily usage. There will be no fuel surcharge for voyages if the price of applicable fuel, delivered locally, does not exceed US$1150 per metric ton. Should the price go above this a surcharge, to cover only the increase in fuel costs, may apply. In this case agents will be notified immediately and passengers will have the right to cancel their reservations within 14 days of notice of increase without penalty. Share Travel and Single Suplements - If you are travelling alone and wish to share this is available only in the following categories: Triple Classic, Main Deck and Classic Suites. If you prefer, single occupancy of a twin cabin is available at 1.7 times the twin rate and available only in Main Deck and Classic Suites; single occupancy of a twin cabin is available at 2 times the twin rate in the Superior, Deluxe, Premium and Owner Suites. Final Payments - Balances are due 90 days prior to departure. Balance payments may be paid by bank transfer, or on request by credit card (subject to a 2% surcharge). Cancellations - All requests for cancellation must be received in writing to Expeditions Online. Cancellations received 120 days or more prior to departure, are refunded less a fee of $750 per person. Cancellations received from 120 to 91 days prior to departure, are subject to 20% per person cancellation fee. If cancellation occurs less than 90 days prior to departure, all payments are forfeited. If full payment has not yet been received, the full penalty will still apply and any unpaid balance is due immediately. We strongly recommend that you obtain adequate trip cancellation insurance. Booking Terms - Please read carefully the General Booking Conditions for Expeditions Online. This voyage is operated by Poseidon Expeditions and you additionally travel under their terms and conditions as the operator as well as of the Shipping Company/transport carrier. Details will be forwarded to you at the time of booking.

Included

  • 1 pre-voyage hotel night;
  • Group transfer to the ship on day of embarkation;
  • Group transfer to airport or central location upon disembarkation;
  • Shipboard accommodation;
  • All scheduled landings/excursions (other than optional);
  • Leadership throughout the voyage by our experienced Expedition Leader & Expedition Team;
  • All meals on board throughout the voyage;
  • Tea and coffee station 24 hours daily;
  • A pair of rubber boots on loan for shore landings;
  • Branded Poseidon Expeditions parka;
  • Welcome and Farewell cocktails;
  • All port fees;
  • Pre-departure materials;
  • Digital Voyage Log;
  • Emergency Evacuation Insurance to a maximum benefit of US 100,000 per person (for those 85 years of age and younger).

Excluded

  • Airfare;
  • Visa and passport fees (if applicable);
  • Luggage and trip cancellation insurance;
  • Soft drinks and alcoholic beverages other than those for special events and celebrations;
  • Personal expenses such as laundry and telecommunication charges;
  • Staff gratuities.
  • Special conditions: In case fuel price increases significantly fuel surcharge may be applied for all bookings.