Such is the power of the Arctic that a journey through this pristine wilderness will leave you inspired, invigorated and more deeply connected to the planet than you thought possible.
Much more than a single destination on a well-worn tourist map, the Arctic encompasses eight countries – USA (Alaska), Canada, Finland, Denmark (Greenland), Iceland, Norway, Russia and Sweden. Unlike its direct polar opposite, The Arctic’s close islands and connected land mass, allows huge numbers of different land based animals, including humans, to migrate as seasonal or permanent residents, as well as providing many good starting points for the intrepid traveller to explore this vast region.
Navigate the Arctic by sea and you’ll be as close as possible to wildlife in their natural habitat. As if they have stepped from a picture book, it’s here where magnificent beasts appear before you, larger than life. Imagine being confronted by a long-tusked Walrus, bellowing loudly as he skims the icy waters beside your boat. If that hasn’t got your heart racing, then the sight of a majestic polar bear, staring silently back at you, certainly will.
During the long summer months, where day light never ends, the Arctic is perfect for adventurers and explorers who like to hike, trek or sled. In winter, the magic continues when the long night presents the spectacle of Aurora Borealis (the Northern lights) a curtain of proton charged light waves in mesmerising streams of rainbow colours across the sky.
You could utterly lose yourself in this surreal landscape.
If planet Earth suffered a major disaster, The Svalbard Global Seed Vault, which is built into the side of a mountain on a remote island in Norway’s Arctic, represents a fail-safe facility, housing the world’s largest collection of plant diversity.
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A cruising Expedition of the Svalbard Archipelago has no true fixed itinerary. When a polar bear appears on the sea ice, in their natural habitat everyone stops for that ‘pinch me’ moment. The season is short June-August, so bookings need to be made well in advance.