Cruise only (Please call for flight options)
Setting sail from Bergen
Beautiful Bergen, Norway's former capital, is a perfect city to explore on foot. Bryggen - the old Hanseatic wharf, and a UNESCO World Heritage site - still has the old harbour timber buildings, whilst other attractions include the funicular up Mount Floyen, with stunning views when you reach the top, and the busy fish market.
United Kingdom: Lerwick
Lerwick is the only town of any size in the Shetland islands, and originally grew up around the herring trade. Highlights include the charming 18th century architecture along the waterfront and the informative Shetland Museum, which provides an excellent introduction to the history and culture of the islands.
Faroe Islands: Elduvík
The little village of Bakkagerði sits in a valley on the east coast of Iceland, in an area that’s popular with hikers. Take a stroll to the top of Álfaborg, a hill whose name translates as ‘Elf City’, or head out into the harbour in search of seabirds including puffins, gulls and kittiwakes.
The little town of Húsavík, on Iceland’s north coast, enjoys a picturesque setting just across the bay from the imposing Húsavíkurfjall mountain, and is known as Iceland’s whale watching capital. It’s also not far from the fascinating Lake Mývatn if you would prefer to take a land-based excursion.
Akureyri is Iceland’s second city, though with just 18,000 inhabitants it’s really more of a small town. Situated on the north coast at the head of Iceland’s largest fjord, it’s a cute and quirky place that also serves as a base from which to explore the bubbling mud pools and lunar landscapes around Lake Mývatn.
Svalbard and Jan Mayen: Jan Mayen
The island of Jan Mayen sits several hundred miles north of Iceland, a remote and inaccessible place where tourist numbers are strictly limited. Towering Mount Beerenburg is the world’s northernmost active volcano, and there is no human settlement except for a very lonely Norwegian weather station.
Svalbard and Jan Mayen: Gnålodden, Hornsund
Norway: Poolepynten (Forlandet National Park)
Arriving in Longyearbyen
This is the world's northernmost city and the base for tourism in Svalbard. A bit quirky, as you would expect from somewhere that spends four months of the year in near darkness, Longyearbyen doesn't take long to explore. Its brightly coloured wooden houses are built on stilts, as the ground in Svalbard is permafrost. When you enter a building, you are normally asked to remove your shoes, and leave your gun at the door. Gun carrying is more or less essential for the locals, as with 3,000 local hungry polar bears, it is said that you never know when you might need protection. That said, we visited safely without a gun!
Don’t die here – it’s illegal. There have been no new burials for over 70 years, because the permafrost prevents bodies from decomposing.
Your home from home
MS Spitsbergen joined the Hurtigruten fleet in 2016 after an extensive renovation, and operates both the classic Norwegian coastal route and expedition voyages to Svalbard.
What we love
Calling at regular coastal route towns, MS Spitsbergen spends more time in port than other Hurtigruten vessels, allowing a little more time ashore. The ship's manoeuvrability and small size allows guests to get even closer to the stunning scenery that this part of the world is famous for.
|Style||MS Spitsbergen is relaxed and comfortable, accommodating a combination of tourists and Norwegians ferrying goods up and down the coast.|
Tailor-make your trip
Where to stay in Longyearbyen
There’s really not much choice! Go for the Radisson Blu.
Travel out of Longyearbyen by snow scooter or dog sled to take a look at the amazing scenery and hunt for wildlife.