Arctic Discovery

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For those who want all at once. For dreamers and philosophers. 

The Arctic is closer and easier to get to than you think. 

That is a tour you’ve always been willing to go for. To visit three different settlements:

 

Longyearbyen is the Norwegian capital of Svalbard with typical Scandinavian architecture, non-so-high and colourful buildings and with an airport situated near the town it is the first point you reach on the archipelago. 

 

Then you will get into the Arctic time-machine and get into the Soviet period time visiting the post-frozen settlement Pyramiden - a unique place with the ambience of the past century. The town is now getting a new life but within the cosy interiors of the hotel and restaurant, cinema hall and cafeteria, you will still feel the echo of the XX century with 1970-80s music on the background. 

 

And after you will reach Barentsburg which is the modern Russian settlement, a town telling a thousand stories of the Arctic discovery and polar explorers’ expeditions to the North. Each era of Barentsburg growth has been marked by episodes representing the spirit and soul of the Arctic. Therefore, you will hear the present-day life of the town through the living or born-again stories, e.g. the coal mine operating since the years of the Dutchmen presence on the archipelago or a kennel with various Arctic sledge dog breeds. 

 

To hear the Arctic Ocean’s breathing, to see summer colourful mountain landscapes, the bird colonies, to feel the Arctic from the inside - everything gets real and you can go for this adventure of a lifetime with families and kids (>12 years old).

 

Program duration: 7 days / 6 nights

Day 0. Monday. Arrival on Svalbard. Longyearbyen 

 

Arrival in Longyearbyen by one of the day, evening or night flights from Oslo within SAS or Norwegian airlines. The guides will meet you at the airport and then you will be transferred to a hotel in town of Longyearbyen (to book a place of accommodation in Longyearbyen for this night is at extra cost). 

 

To those who arrive within a day flight, we offer a guided tour around Longyearbyen. You will visit the area where the town began, a local church and the Svalbard museum. 

 

- Longyearbyen is the capital of Svalbard. It is the northernmost populated area with approximately 2000 inhabitants, 50 nationalities. Longyearbyen was founded in 1906 by John Longyear and named after him further on. This is a town with a particular temper that has been loved by adventurers, explorers, fans of the North and wilderness. 

 

- Svalbard museum presents an exhibition of the cultural history of Svalbard by time-frames from Barents’ expedition, the first whale trappers of the XVII century, Russian pomors, Norwegian trappers, polar explorers, natural resources and till nowadays. 

 

- Svalbard Kirke is the Lutheran church on Svalbard. This is the second northernmost church in the world (the first one is located on the Franz Josef Land). However, the northernmost permanent priest lives in Longyearbyen and he is entitled to receive confessions regardless of what religion a person is. The church is open 24 hours per day. Svalbard Kirke is founded in 1921. During the World War II, it was destroyed and burned up. On the 24th of August, 1956, it was renovated and open again.  

 

Day 1. Tuesday. Boat trip Longyearbyen - Pyramiden. Pyramiden 

 

08:30 - Transfer to a harbour from your place of accommodation. 

 

- Boat-cruise trip to Pyramiden settlement (journey time is approx. 4,5-5 hours) with a stop-over near Nordenskiöld glacier (Nordenskiöldbreen). The glacier table is 300 km long and the wall strikes the imagination with its height and colours. You’ll feel its «thunder» before you reach it. 

 

- Grill-lunch is served onboard while the stop-over near the glacier. 

 

- Accommodation in the hotel «Pyramiden». 

 

- Guided tour around the settlement

 

Pyramiden is a settlement situated at the bottom of the mountain and was named after it. It was founded in 1911. It’s a town located in between mountains, the huge glacier and moraine. In 1946 coal deposits started being opened up and in the 1970s-1980s a perfect socialism model system was built. In 1998 Pyramiden was frozen (preserved) but its infrastructure arranged in the Soviet period has come down to us. Anyone who has spent in Pyramiden at least a couple of hours makes a point in this place’s uniqueness. Today the town is open and it grows as a tourist location. A boiler house, hotel, restaurant and film stock cinema have been renovated. Pyramiden attracts not only tourists but also film directors, journalists, free riders and bloggers from all over the world. 

 

- Walking tour to the Goose lakes

 

These are two basins being the main source of water for Pyramiden. You will see a unique engineering construction that prevents the water from freezing all year round. 

 

- Movie screening in the film stock cinema. 

 

A blacken-out cinema hall and sounds of an old cine-projector dig the audience into the atmosphere of the past century. As of now, there have been two film stock projectors renovated and the number of cine films has reached around 2000 items. Although it had seemed impossible a couple of years ago, in autumn, 2018 the first movie show was arranged. 

 

- Dinner in the hotel restaurant.

 

Overnight in the hotel «Pyramiden».  

 

Day 2. Wednesday. Walking tour around Pyramiden. Boat trip to the Skans bay (Skansbukta) 

 

- Breakfast in the hotel restaurant. 

 

- Walking tour in the surroundings of Pyramiden. Depending upon what the guests prefer and their training level, we offer various routes where each is full of breathtaking landscapes. 

 

For hiking lovers, there is an option to go up the Pyramiden mountain. The height is 937 meters where you will see an amazing view on the settlement and surroundings. 

 

- Lunch in the hotel restaurant. 

 

- Boat trip by open RIB boats PolarCirkel to the Skans bay (Skansbukta)

 

PolarCirkel is an 8-meter-long boat of high endurance and created by Norwegian shipbuilders specifically for marine passages in the Arctic. The boats are equipped with a large power engine Yamaha (200 HP), echo sounders, emergency beacons and marine radio communication. Therefore, we provide special Arctic rescue suits by Norwegian brand Hansen. It will keep you warm, protect from the wind and give a boost of confidence during the boat trips. 

 

Skans bay (Skansbukta) is a place that hides fascinating stories of the past and is full of various sights: mountain scenery, marble formations, Norwegian lodge and remainings of a wooden boat. This is one of the most picturesque bays of the archipelago.  

 

- Dinner in the hotel restaurant. 

 

- Overnight in the hotel «Pyramiden».  

 

Day 3. Thursday. Boat trip Pyramiden - Barentsburg. Barentsburg 

 

- Breakfast in the hotel restaurant. 

 

Time is to have a bit of rest, take a short walk around Pyramiden and visit the souvenir shop with one of the northernmost Norwegian post offices where you can send a postcard to your nearest and dearest from the 78’40 Northern latitude. 

 

- Light lunch in the hotel restaurant or lunch box. 

 

- Boat-cruise trip from Pyramiden to Barentsburg with a short stop-over in Longyearbyen. Duration is approximately 4-5 hours. 

 

- Accommodation in the hotel «Barentsburg». 

 

- Guided tour around the settlement

 

Barentsburg is the Russian «capital» of Svalbard. It is a town of Arctic stories written by Dutch explorers, pomors, Norwegian trappers, American and German merchants, adventurers, Soviet builders of communism and Russian miners. Barentsburg was founded in 1921 by the Dutch as a coal-mining settlement. Since 1931 it has been under the State Trust «Arcticugol» administration. The population is approximately 500 people. 

 

- Dinner in the bar, restaurant and brewery Red Bear with the tasting of a locally made beer brewed on the glacier lake water and the English malt. The northern cuisine specialities will be served. 

 

- Overnight in the hotel «Barentsburg».  

 

Day 4. Friday. Add-on activities in Barentsburg. Museum exhibition complex ArtAcrtic Gallery. Folk show 

 

- Breakfast in the hotel restaurant. 

 

The first half of the day, it’s time to «catch your breath», to have a walk around Barentsburg or to choose one of our add-on activities (at extra cost): 

 

• to take a short trip by kayaks in Grønfjorden

• to go for a walking tour with «fluffy companions» - residents of our husky kennel (with special equipment). 

 

Our kennel in Barentsburg is unique because we have all the Arctic sledge dog breeds. 80 dog booths on the Grønfjorden shore against the background of the magnificent Esmark glacier (Esmarkbreen). You will see sledge dogs’ rigid faces that right after the first sniffing turn to cheerful ones with bright little stars in their tender eyes. The kennel is a place where images of the pole exploring by Amundsen and Peary take on life right in front of your eyes. Both poles were explored by people with the help of sledge dogs. Looking at these animals you can feel a sort of primaeval strength, goal-oriented power and natural authenticity. 

 

- Lunch in the hotel restaurant. 

 

- Museum exhibition complex ArtArctic Gallery visit. 

 

Unique exposition of pomors’ artefacts of XVII – XVIII found during archaeological excavations held on Svalbard. There are no similar collections of pomors’ artefacts of XVII – XVIII anywhere. Several vitrines with authentic artefacts from Willem Barents’ expedition of 1596 including a part of the wooden ship. The artefacts were found during the Russian-Netherlandish expedition of 1993-1995 in a location of Barents’ over-wintering on the archipelago Novaya Zemlya (rus. The New Land). 

 

- Folk show in the Culture Palace of Barentsburg with a performance of local music and dance bands. 

 

- Dinner in the hotel restaurant. 

 

- Overnight in the hotel «Barentsburg». 

  

Day 5. Saturday. PolarCirkel boat trip along the picturesque shores of Isfjorden (cape Starostin, cape Festningen, Isfjord Radio station) 

 

- Breakfast in the hotel restaurant. 

 

- Transfer to the harbour. PolarCirkel boat trip to the cape Starostin. 

 

- While a stop-over at the cape Starostin you can either have a walking tour up to the Linné lake (Linnévatnet) or stay in the hut to warm yourself up. 

 

Cape Starostin got its name after a legendary pomor trapper, Ivan Starostin, who spent 39 winters on Svalbard never leaving the island during the last 15 years. He lived at the Russekeila river mouth located not so far from Grønfjord. There you will see the reconstruction of Starostin overwintering camp and pomor funeral cross and will get inside a functioning cabin. One more interesting thing about this place is that Starostin Cape and environs around became the shooting point for the Norwegian movie «Operasjon “Arktis”».

 

- Picnic in cosy interiors of the Starostin hut. 

 

- The Isfjord Radio station visit.

 

Isfjord Radio is a former shore radio and weather station on the cape Linné. A century ago it turned into a connection chain between the archipelago and the mainland, serving as a navigation system and collecting weather data. Nowadays, the station is completely automatically-controlled and includes nice accommodation and restaurant facilities. 

 

- Arrival in Barentsburg. 

 

- Dinner in the hotel restaurant. 

 

- Overnight in the hotel «Barentsburg». 

 

Day 6. Sunday. Boat trip Barentsburg - Longyearbyen. «Farewell» dinner

 

- Breakfast in the hotel restaurant. 

 

This day there is an option to visit the mine of Barentsburg (at extra cost). It is the only operating coal mine in the world where you can get into with a tour. You can see a war between man and nature, mechanisms of getting into the ground depth and of mine reinforcement and collapse protection. You can learn how the coal is being produced and transported onto the surface. You can hear sounds of the underground mine core and feel a breath of the wind going up to the surface from the half-kilometre depth. 

 

Before the departure, you can visit a souvenir shop and post office of Barentsburg. 

 

- Lunch in the hotel restaurant. 

 

- Boat-cruise trip from Barentsburg to Longyearbyen. Duration is approximately 2-4 hours. 

 

Accommodation in Russkiy Dom (eng. Russian House, it is a guesthouse and expedition centre of the Arctic Travel company Grumant, 2-4-person accommodation). 

 

- «Farewell» dinner in one of the restaurants of Longyearbyen. 

 

Overnight in Russkiy Dom. 

 

Day 7. Monday. Departure to the mainland 

 

Breakfast in Russkiy Dom. 

 

Transfer to the airport of Longyearbyen for a day flight. 

 

Departure to the mainland.

Travel Dates in 2020

29/06 - 06/07

06/07 - 13/07

13/07 - 20/07

20/07 - 27/07

10/08 - 17/08

31/08 - 07/09

07/09 - 14/09

Tour Price

19 990 NOK/ pers

 

Extra charge for accommodation in SINGLE rooms in Barentsburg and Pyramiden:

3 400 NOK/ pers

The Price Includes:

Accommodation and meals

 

Full board

 

Transfer airport-Longyearbyen-airport

 

Activities according to the itinerary

 

Boat rent (RIB Polarcirkel, Zodiac, cabin cruiser Barentsburg), fuel

 

Rent of survival suite Helly Hansen and safety equipment incl. portable radio set, satellite phone, GPS-navigator, warning bacon, etc.

 

English-speaking guide

 

Insurance covering research and rescue, evacuation costs in case of emergency

 

 

The Price Does Not Include:

Flight to/from Longyearbyen

 

Optional short trips and offers (tour to the mine, tour to the husky farm and dog-trekking)

 

Accomodation in the single room

 

Alcohol drinks and dishes/drinks beyond the menu

 

Tips to the guide

Fill in an Application

Tour is guaranteed at min. group of 2 pers.

Please give us a call or send us an email!
 

9178 Barentsburg

Svalbard, Norway

 

booking@goarctica.com

+ 47 90 60 84 70  (office)
+ 47 94 13 01 28 (24 hours)
 

© TRUST Arcticugol

Registry number in Unified Federal Register of Tour Operators RTO 017351

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