2017 - Svalbard and
M/S Plancius, 14 days, (PLA15-17)
A 13 night voyage
starting in Longyearbyen (Spitsbergen) sailing along the
Northeast coast of Greenland and ending in Akureyri
(Iceland). Heavily indented with numerous fjords, the coast
is formed by spectacular high mountains, 2000 meters (6500
feet) high cliffs and innumerable glaciers. The large
glaciers produce the huge cathedral-like ice-bergs that are
abundant in the Greenlandic waters. Greenland and its
surrounding waters are home to an impressive array of
wildlife. Especially marine mammals such as Fin, Minke and
Humpback Whales, Narwhal and Beluga (White Whales) are
frequently seen. Blue Whale, Sperm Whale and Pilot Whale are
also seen occasionally. There are about 52 bird species on
the island. Greenland is home to more terrestrial mammal
species than Spitsbergen: Arctic Wolf, Arctic Fox, Ermine,
Collared Lemming, Muskox and the Arctic Hare. The Polar Bear
is rarely seen on the west coast, but is regularly seen on
the northern and north-eastern coasts.
On this expedition we are
exploring the remote wilderness of the dramatic Eastern
coast of Greenland.
To book the tour or to contact us for any queries, just send
us an email at
or give us a call at +46-8-55626970
This is a plan and the program can, due to weather, ice
conditions or other circumstances. Flexibility is the key for a
Arrive in Longyearbyen, on Spitsbergen, the administrative
capital of the Svalbard archipelago of which West
Spitsbergen is the largest island. Before embarking there is
an opportunity to visit this former mining village. The
Parish Church and the Polar Museum are well worth visiting.
In the early evening the ship will sail out of Isfjorden.
We sail into Raudfjord on the north coast of West
Spitsbergen, a beautiful fjord with spectacular glaciers. It
is home to Ringed and Bearded Seal, seabird colonies and a
surprisingly rich vegetation. We have good chances to see
Polar Bear, for instance near Hamilton Glacier, or more to
the head of the fjord. From there we continue to Moffen
Island on which Walrus haul out.
At sea, on our way to Greenland, we may see the edge of the
East Greenland sea-ice. We keep watch for whales, and also
for migrating seabirds.
Approaching Greenland we will attempt to sail through the
sea ice into Foster Bugt, making our first landing at
Myggebugten. Beyond the old hunters’ hut (in the first half
of last century Norwegian trappers hunted here for Polar
Bear and Arctic Fox) there is an extensive tundra populated
by Musk Oxen. The small lakes are home to geese. We sail
through Kaiser Franz Joseph Fjord, a magnificent fjord with
towering mountains on both sides, its inner reaches choked
with huge icebergs. An alternative is Sofia Sund, which is
much narrower and where we can see Musk Oxen from the ship.
Photo: Robert & Femke
We will land at Blomster Bugt to view the beautiful
geological formations. Arctic Hare are usually seen here,
and there is a lake with Great Northern Diver and their
young. In the afternoon we sail along Teufelschloss and Ella
Ø and may land at a beautiful spot in the early evening.
In the morning we enter
Segelsällskapets Fjord with the beautiful Berzelius
Mountains on the north side. We will land on the south side
of the fjord in an astounding place where the ancient
sedimentary geology is literally at your feet. A hike will
take us near a small lake with good chances to see Muskoxen,
Arctic hare, and Ptarmigan. In the afternoon the ship will
venture into Alpe Fjord, which is as spectacular as the name
implies. We may embark on a long Zodiac cruise around the
Gully Glacier which once blocked the access to the interior
of the fjord and venture deep inside to the very end.
Adventure at its finest!
The first half of the day we spend in Antarcticahavn, a wide
and extensive valley where we also could see groups of Musk
Oxen. At this time of year the autumnal colours of the
sparse vegetation make the landscapes even more beautiful.
Today we reach the Scoresby Sund and sail in the morning
along the ragged and glaciated Volquart Boons. Here we may
organise a zodiac cruise along one of the glacier fronts of
this coast, and have our first landing near for instance
Maane Glacier. Later we land on Danmark,Ø where we find the
remains of an Inuit settlement abandoned around 200 years
ago. The circular ‘tent rings’ of stones indicate the summer
houses, while the winter houses can be seen closer to a
small cape. The sites are well preserved, allowing entrances
and even bear-proof meat caches to be identified. There are
also grave sites. In the evening we continue our sailing
through the beautiful fjords to the west, choked with
We go ashore at Cape Hofmann Halvø, a reliable spot for
viewing Musk Oxen. We may also spot Rock Ptarmigan and Great
Northern Diver at sea. The landscape here is particularly
beautiful, especially during autumn when the Dwarf Willow
and Dwarf Birch change colour. Arctic Blueberry and
Crowberry add their own colourful touch - the berries are
tasty too! In the evening we sail through the fjord towards
Scoresby Land, enjoying the contrast between the warm
autumnal colours of the vegetation on shore, backed by huge
dark mountains, and the cold blue of the icebergs.
In Northwest fjord in Scoresby Land in the morning, we
encounter huge icebergs, some over 100m high and more than a
kilometre in length. Most of the bergs are grounded as the
fjord is only about 400m deep here. We land near Sydkap to
view the remains of the Thule culture winter houses. As many
as 20 people lived in these tiny houses, hunting Greenland
Whale and using their vertebrae to build the houses. We may
also land at Gurreholm on Jameson Land. The landscape here
is gently undulating.
In the morning we land at Ittoqqortoormiit, the biggest
settlement in the Scoresby Sund with about 500 inhabitants.
At the post office you can buy stamps for your postcards, or
just wander around to see the sledge dogs and the drying
skins of Seal, Musk Ox and Polar Bear. After dinner we will
sail south passing the amazing landscape of the Blosseville
We will spend the whole day at sea and we will have splendid
opportunities to see large whales and seabird migration and,
in the night, the Aurora borealis (Northern Lights).
Arrive at Akureyri, and transfer by chartered bus during a 6
hour drive to Hotel Reykjavik Centrum, Adalstraeti 16 in
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