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Tromsø to Spitsbergen TOP029_3
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Tromsø to Spitsbergen Sailing Adventure

A three week Spitsbergen sailing adventure to the ‘land of the polar bears’,  a dream adventure that few people are able to realise.

Sail through the archipelago of Svalbard with the largest island, Spitsbergen as your destination.  The east coast is generally inaccessible due to ice and so your captain will be steering you along the west coast and if you’re adventurous enough you’ll be only 500nm from the North Pole.  

Setting sail from Tromso you’ll get your sea legs on a gentle first leg through Norway’s north west archipelago.  Once the group has acclimatised, the captain will point your vessel north, for a long voyage that could last as long as five days, depending on the weather. This is great open ocean sailing across the Barents Sea and you’ll quickly discover the peace and deep reflection that being on the water natural brings. This classic voyage is well known and respected among sailors.

Once you arrive in Spitsbergen you’ll have two weeks to explore up and down the coast.  Weather permitting you’ll pass through he glacier-chocked area of Hornsundet – a well known hang out for the polar bear.  Also on order is Sophiakammen, a vast rock wall that leaves everyone stunned and speechless and our planets beauty and magnificence.  Another stunning area is Magdalena fjord, a deserted whaling station with a gorgeous backdrop of glaciers and mountains.  This is the ideal spot for a whale sighting.

Highlights:

  • Sightings of whales, polar bears, walrus, and icebergs
  • Discover the bird paradise that is Bear Island
  • See the 14th of July glacier, stunningly beautiful and considered the fastest calving glacier on the planet
  • Visit Alkhornet with its beautiful mountains and wonderful bird life
  • Visit Smeerenburg, an abandoned whaling station
  • Learn sailing basics from a highly experienced and motivated crew

Join a unique and sought after voyage that will provide you countless stories to tell and memories to cherish.  Enquire today.

Begin in the beautiful islands of Northern Norway

Starting in  Tromsø, we’ll have an opportunity to acclimatise to the boat and practise all the necessary skills as we sail gently up through the north west archipelago of Norway. Once everyone is comfortable and the weather is right, we’ll set off on our long voyage north, which could last anywhere from three to four days, depending on the weather. It will be a wonderful opportunity to experience open ocean sailing, and the chances of seeing whales and other rare marine wildlife is very high. It is one of the classic voyages and even the name of the Barents Sea is one that inspires awe and respect in sailors. En route, if the weather is right we may even be able to anchor for a night off Bear Island, a true paradise of deserted arctic wildlife!

Sail 350nm north to Spitsbergen

Making landfall in Spitsbergen, we will have a good two weeks to sail up and down the west coast of this magical island. Our first stop may even be Hornsundet if the drift ice allows. This glacier-choked area of western Spitsbergen was a busy whaling base but now a well known haunt of polar bears  – we’ll have to be careful. We’ll also see the vast rock wall of Sophiakammen that leaves everyone who sees it stunned. Add to this whales, walrus and huge numbers of sea birds and we have to hope the ice allows us into this fjord!

Explore this magical Arctic wilderness

If we make it far enough north, we may have the chance to explore Magdalena fjord – an area of true natural beauty. Another abandoned whaling station, a backdrop of mountains and glaciers surrounds it while there are great opportunities for whale spotting.

Finally, we will end in the island’s only real municipality, Longyearbyen for a well deserved beer and a flight home to the creature comforts of home!

Explore the world… under sail!

More Details

Key Facts and Figures

  • No previous sailing experience is needed
  • Maximum of 8 crew on most trips
  • Over half the crew join the boat alone
  • Average age range is 35 – 65 yrs
  • Most crews are evenly split male & female
  • We head ashore most days
  • Everything is included – you just need to get to & from the start / finish

Key information for this expedition

You need to join the boat by midday on the start day. In the afternoon, we have safety briefings, issue kit and will start training. Don’t be late!

You will disembark by midday on the end day. This means you should have time to grab a flight that day – but give yourself time to get to the airport and check in and remember there is always a slight chance that the weather may disrupt our plans.

You must have suitable travel insurance. It must include yachting as paying crew in this region. There are various providers and you must ensure that your policy is suitable.

Age & medical conditions

There is no age limit on our expeditions and indeed we have sailed with a 75 year old up into the Arctic Circle. However, you must be reasonably fit and agile as you will be active crew on a yacht. We ask anyone aged 70 or over to provide a doctor’s certificate stating that you are fit to head to sea.

We can accommodate many medical conditions but do check with us before booking. With anything other than minor conditions, we will again ask you to provide a doctor’s certificate stating that you are fit to head to sea.

The nearest airports

You should fly in to Bodø airport and fly out of Tromsø airport.

Food on board

The menu inevitably varies depending on which country we’re in and what food we can buy.

We can accommodate most dietary issues, but ask that you differentiate between ‘I genuinely can’t have’ and ‘I don’t like’. If you have any concerns, you should speak with us before booking!

Alcohol on board is at the paying crew’s expense.

…and yes, there’s a cookbook but you guys do the cooking!

Dates: 11 July – 27 July 2017

Price: 2,880 GBP

Start point: Tromsø, Norway

End point: Longyearbyen, Norway

 

WHAT IS INCLUDED?

  • Two full-time instructors on board
  • Tender, sea kayak & bike.
  • All on-board food.
  • Full foul weather kit and life-jackets
  • Small group dynamic – max. 8 paying crew.
  • RYA qualifications available.

 

We love this sailing company’s ethos – to help people do three things: sail, train and explore. They are passionate about enabling people to experience life out on the open ocean, building sailing skills and exploring some beautiful countries. After years of training people to become professional sailors, and having covered thousands of miles between them, the company Founders Rachael and Bruce realised that so many people had dreamt of setting off across an ocean, but hadn’t the skills, the boat or crew to make those dreams come true.

The company now runs expeditions on a specialised 60’ yacht to some of the most exciting places out there – often largely inaccessible from land. With no previous sailing experience required, the two instructors will guide you every step of the way as you develop your sailing skills, maybe even earning an RYA qualification during the week. Exploring on land as they go is just as important and the bikes and a kayak mean you can head off and enjoy everything there is to see along the route.

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