$ 7,690.00 (Cat. G)
$ 5,290.00 (Cat. F)
$ 6,890.00 (Cat. E)
$ 6,290.00 (Cat. D)
$ 7,690.00 (Cat. C)
$ 8,390.00 (Cat. B)
$ 9,390.00 (Cat. A)
$10,490.00 (Freydis Suite)
$12,590.00 (Brynhilde Suite)
Category G - Single Stateroom Porthole 14 sq. m
Category F - Triple Stateroom Porthole 22 sq. m
Category E - French Balcony Suite 16 sq. m
Category D - Balcony Stateroom 22 sq. m
Category C - Balcony Stateroom 24 sq. m
Category B2 - Balcony Suite 28 sq. m
Category B1 - Balcony Suite 35 sq. m
Category A - Junior Suite 42 sq. m
Join a new and exciting voyage onboard Ocean Albatros, exploring the northernmost region of planet Earth - the Arctic Ocean. Departing from the world's northernmost town, Longyearbyen, this unique voyage will visit the northern region of the fascinating archipelago of Svalbard, before spending two full days exploring the frozen wilderness of the pack ice. The nurtient-rich waters of the northern Barents Sea nourish a plethora of wildlife, much of which can be found in the Arctic pack ice and nowhere else.
Our unique ice-strengthened vessel is the ideal platform from which to explore this icy seascape, offering the best possible views over the ever-shifting ice which stretches from Svalbard to Siberia and Alaska, far beyond the North Pole. Navigating these ethereal white ice floes is a challenge even for even the most skilled seafarers, however our talented Captain, Bridge Team and Expedition Leader will artfully exploit the leads and cracks in the ice, endevouring to explore as much of this unearthly realm as possible. Embark on the adventure of lifetime aboard Ocean Albatros for a truly unique take on the traditional Svalbard expedition cruise.
Board your flight in Norway and arrive in Longyearbyen, Svalbard - the world's northernmost... everything! This remarkable little city is not only the northernmost town in the world (if one excludes the tiny research community of Ny-Ålesund, slightly further north on Svalbard), but also hosts the world's northernmost civilian airport, schools, bank and supermarket. The town's rugged frontier edge belies a core of warm Nordic hospitality and coziness - hyggligt, as we say in Denmark!
Immediately after landing in Longyearbyen, you find yourself in a different world. The chilly Arctic breeze can be felt as soon as you step onto the tarmac, and the famous signpost outside the terminal reminds visitors how far north they really are; as well as to keep watch for bears! The snow-capped mountain Hjorthfjellet looms over the airport on the far side of Adventfjorden, and off in the distance can be seen the saw-toothed peaks and languid glaciers of northern Spitzbergen.
After arrival, you will board the awaiting Ocean Albatros. After our mandatory safety briefing and lifeboat drill, head onto the outer decks to enjoy a glass of champagne while watching your expedition vessel leave civilisation behind... And set a course for adventure!
THE WILDERNESS OF THE HIGH ARCTIC
One of the largest protected wilderness areas in Europe, North West Svalbard was declared a national park in 1973. The area is famed for its history, which documents some of the earliest human arrivals on Svalbard. While Norse explorers may have sighted these icy shores during the Viking Age, the first definite arrival was the expedition of William Barents, the legendary Dutch explorer for whom the Barents Sea is named. While now protected from human distruption, when Barents arrived in 1596, he noted the vast numbers of whales and seals which were soon prey to English and Dutch whalers, who arrived within a decade of Barents to pillage the area's wildlife. The area occupied the triple point between land, sea and ice, and as such was the perfect location from which to harvest the gentle giants of the oceans. Sites used to dismember whale carcasses and render them for their precious oil include the Dutch settlement of Smeerenburg, where the remains of 16th Century blubber ovens and building foundations can still be seen. Other sites such as nearby Ytre Norskøya record the darker side of this industrialised slaughter, where hundreds of young men who hoped to make their fortunes are buried thousands of miles from home.
Today, all that remains from this period of history are bones and the scant remnants of human habitation. Slowly reclaimed by creeping Arctic nature, the region is now a anture lovers paradise. Tiny Arctic poppies and purple saxifrage defy the brutal conditions to flower in the brief summer, while geese, eider ducks and other seabirds return to the island to raise their young. Walrus can be found hauled out on beaches, and we must always be on careful lookout for wandering polar bears in this now again wild region.
An icy breeze touches your exposed cheeks. The scent of snow and sea fills your nostrils. Sunlight reflects off the floating ice, illuminating the clouds overhead. Enter an environment like no other, the vast shape-shifting realm of floating ice which crowns our planet. The vast ever-changing ice pack to the north of Svalbard stretches from this already isolated archipelago to the North Pole, and onwards across the Arctic Ocean towards the northern shores of Chukotka and Alaska.
The Arctic ice pack is one of Earth's largest habitats, although unlike most it varies hugely year on year, expanding in winter and retreating in summer. The location of the sea ice around Svalbard can also vary wildly - however, with two full days planned to explore this icy wilderness, we maximise our chances of finding and exploring this impossibly remote environment. At first glance, this stark white wilderness seems barren, empty and lifeless. This icy wilderness holds on to its mysteries, and of course wildlife sightings are at the whims of Mother NatureWith a little perseverance however, the ice reveals its secrets.
As Ocean Albatros pushes through the narrow channels in the ice, tiny cod-like fish can be seen silhouetted against the ice in the clear water. Kittiwakes and Gloucous Gulls follow the vessel as it distrubs the water. Further out on the ice, black dots appear; moving closer, they resolve into seals, basking on the ice. A plume of water reflects the sunshine - a pod of belugas perhaps, or maybe even the vast gentle bowhead whale crushing this ice from below as its massive body surfaces. There, beyond the banks of rucked ice - a yellowish dot pads along the ice, the head swinging from side to side: the King of the Arctic continues his never-ending quest for prey. This is the kingdom of the polar bear, the vast icy wastes at the top of the world - a remarkable place which is the goal of this expedition.
As we retreat from the icy wastes of the north, we return to the (relatively) hospitable shores of northwest Spitzbergen. Once the haunt of whalers and sealers, these shores have an equally fascinating role in the modern history of Svalbard.
These islands' geographical location has made them the staging post for exploratory and scientific expeditions for centuries - a proud legacy which continues to this day. The names of these pioneers and their ships still loom large in world history - the Nobile, the Norge and the Fram, Amundsen, Nansen and Nordenskiöld, all legends of polar exploration who passed this lonely outpost seeking to push the boundaries of humanity. Nearby stands the tiny settlement of Ny-Ålesund, the world's northernmost community, once a coal mining town, Ny-Ålesund is today a research settlement, hosting permanent research stations from 12 countries. Where whalers once slaughtered, now researchers study in an effort to conserve the precious biodiversity of the region.
Look closely and signs of this courageous history can still be seen. On Danskøya, rusting remains hint at the hot air balloon and airship attempts at the pole by Salomon Andrée and Walter Wellman. In Ny-Ålesund, the airship mast to which Amundsen's Norge was moored still stands proud over the barren landscape. Follow in the footsteps of the explorers of yesteryear and learn how researchers persevere to preserve this high Arctic paradise.
Explore the fascinating little research town of Ny-Ålesund as Ocean Albatros pulls into Kongsfjorden, and see modern Arctic scientists in action in the northernmost settlement on Earth.
During the evening, the Ocean Albatros will reposition to return to the port of Longyearbyen. Even this small town will feel like a metropolis after days of isolation in the sea ice!
Longyearbyen is a fascinating town to explore, and offers excellent amenities to visitors. Visit the peerless Svalbard Museum and see relics of the whaling era, perfectly preserved in the frigid permafrost, alongside exhibits on the natural history of this remarkable archipelago. Shop for memories in the many excellent boutiques of the town, selling locally produced souvenirs, artworks and homewares, or simply relax on a sunny cafe terrace and watch this remarkable little town in action.
After enjoying exploring Longyearbyen, return to Svalbard Airport and join your flight back to the Norwegian mainland- with memories to last a lifetime.