Uncharted Waters Expedition Cruise Series

Tuesday 25TH June – Tuesday 2ND July 2024

Trip Overview

When: June 25th-July 2nd 2024
Open to: women and men
Group Size: 10-14 pax max Julie as group leader
Duration: 9 days / 8 nights

Let’s Go! 

ABOARD M/V ORTELIUS the best activity voyage in the Arctic

The North Spitsbergen Basecamp cruise offers us a myriad of ways to explore and enjoy this Arctic Region. This expedition allows us to hike, snowshoe, kayak, and learn to take perfect pictures of the polar flora and fauna. During the program we will have daily personal development sessions focusing on resilience, wellbeing , self- leadership and navigating challenges and change.


During this voyage we will also take part in a cleaning the shores program.


Clean Up Svalbard is a coastal waste-removal program created by the governor of Svalbard in coordination with AECO, the Association of Arctic Expedition Cruise Operators. As a founding member of the program, Oceanwide Expeditions frequently participates in its beach cleanups. In August of 2019, for example, cleanups conducted from our vessel Hondius removed 1,000 kg (2,200 pounds) of waste from Spitsbergen’s beaches, about half the weight of an average car. This trash consisted of fishing weights, shreds of net, and various smaller plastics.

Most of this waste is plastic pollution from local shipping and commercial fishing. In fact, in 2016 and 2017 about 60 – 80% of Svalbard’s plastic waste came from the fishing industry, washing up on the shores of Svalbard and marring the natural beauty of that rugged environment.

This waste takes a long time to break down, and in the case of plastics never fully does, so it accumulates rapidly and poses a serious threat to local wildlife: Litter can become entangled in the feet and beaks of birds or in the antlers of reindeer, condemning them to long and painful death

About Spitsbergen

“Spitsbergen” is Dutch – spits meaning “pointed” and bergen meaning “mountains.” It was so named in 1596 by Dutch Arctic explorer Willem Barentsz. It took some time for the name to catch on – English whalers would refer to the archipelago as Greenland until the late 1780s. The Norwegian name is Svalbard.

Touched by three seas – The Norwegian Sea, the Greenland Sea, and the Arctic Ocean – Spitsbergen is the largest and only permanently populated island of the Svalbard archipelago of northern Norway.
Its rugged mountains and rolling tundra offer plenty of opportunities for hiking and snowshoeing. Spitsbergen is by far the largest wilderness area of Europe and offers some of the finest scenery and wildlife experiences in the world. 


It is recommended that everyone arrives in Oslo on Monday 24th June. There are  flights to Oslo from around the globe. Stay close to the airport at the Radisson Blue so it’s easy to get to the airport for our Svalbard flight on the 25th  We will have a team dinner and briefing around 7pm today ( 24th June )  

SK4414 Departs Oslo  09.40 am  arrives Svalbard  13.45  (SAS Airlines) 

Today we fly to one of my  favorite places on the planet, Svalbard. We will be met at the airport by the Oceanwide team who will take our luggage direct to the ship and drop us in Svalbard  so we can explore before boarding later on in the day. This is a great day to enjoy a stroll around Svalbard and mix the locals! There’s an interesting selection of shops, a church, museum, and several great places to enjoy a meal. In the early evening our ship sails out of Isfjorden.If we are lucky we might spot the first minke whale of our voyage.

On the first day of our activity program, we will slowly ease into things. Blomstrandhalvøya is located on the northern side of the fjord, which will offer shelter and room to change plan in case the weather changes. In the afternoon, we visit Ny Ålesund, one of the northernmost settlements on Earth. Once a mining village served by the world’s most northerly railway – you can still see its tracks – Ny Ålesund is now a research center.

Close to the community is a breeding ground for barnacle geese, pink-footed geese, and Arctic terns. If you’re interested in the history of Arctic exploration, visit the anchoring mast used by polar explorers Amundsen and Nobile in their airships, Norge (1926) and Italia (1928). In the evening, we head north along the west coast and spend the night in the sheltered surroundings of Krossfjorden.


Next we will head toward Amsterdamoya, where we have the chance to hike past the remains of a 17th-century whaling station. We also enjoy the beautiful panorama of Smeerenburgsleta. In the afternoon, we make for the islands around Fair Haven.


At Raudfjorden, on the north coast of Spitsbergen, we can take in an expansive fjord spilling with glaciers – and maybe even visited by ringed and bearded seals. The cliffs and shoreline of this fjord also support thriving seabird colonies, rich vegetation, and the possibility of polar bears. Here we will find the right balance between safe activities and wildlilfe watching.

Wildlife watchnig

Depending on the weather, we could sail into Liefdefjorden and cruise within sight of the 5-kilometer-long (3.1 miles) face of Monaco Glacier. The waters in front of this glacier are a favorite feeding spot for thousands of kittiwakes, and the base of the ice is a popular polar bear hunting ground. If ice conditions prevent sailing here early in the season, we may use an alternate route along the west coast of Spitsbergen. Near the area of Texas Bar and Hornbaekpollen, where there are also some great hikes.

Monaco Glacier

This is our reserve day for activities around North Spitsbergen. Weather and wildlife permitting, we will choose the right location for another day of splendid outdoor adventures.


Forlandsundet, between the main island of Spitsbergen and the narrow Prins Karls Forland, is a place of great beauty and fascinating wildlife. Walruses sometimes haul out here, and seabirds can be found around Fuglehuken. We may also see walrus populations around Sarstangen and Poolepynten. Alternatively, we might sail into St. Johns Fjord or south to the mouth of Isfjorden, landing at Alkhornet. Seabirds nest on these cliffs, Arctic foxes search below for fallen eggs and chicks, and reindeer graze the sparse vegetation. We will arrive in Longyearbyen later this night.

Johns Fjord wildlife

Every adventure, no matter how grand, must eventually come to an end. We will disembark in Longyearbyen with options to stay a little longer or take flights back home. Flights back to Oslo then onwards to your home destination. 


Location markers

Spitsbergeb Cruise Route

Trip details

When:  24th June to 2nd July 2023 
Open to: women and men
Group Size: 10-14 pax max Julie as group leader
Duration: 9 days/ 8 nights 

Starts (Embarks)     Longyearbyen

Ends (Disembark) Longyearbyen

The following cabins have been blocked for our group and are on a first come first served basis. It’s highly recommended to book early for this voyage as its very popular! A 20 % deposit per person will secure your cabin. 



Any meals before and after the voyage will be at own choice and cost. 

Once we are board the ship all our meals are included and based on my previous experiences with Oceanwide Expeditions I know you will not go hungry! If you have any special dietary needs please let us know so we can advise  the chefs on board.  

Included in this voyage

  •  Voyage aboard the indicated vessel as indicated in the itinerary
  • All meals throughout the voyage aboard the ship including snacks, coffee and tea.
  • All shore excursions and activities throughout the voyage by Zodiac.
  • Program of lectures by noted naturalists and leadership by experienced expedition staff. Customized personal development  and wellness sessions facilitated by Julie.
  • Free use of rubber boots and snowshoes.
  • Transfers and baggage handling between the airport, hotels and ship only for those passengers on the group flights to and from Longyearbyen.
  • All miscellaneous service taxes and port charges throughout the programme.
  • AECO fees and governmental taxes.
  • Comprehensive pre-departure material.
  • Team fleece and main  kit bag

Excluded from this voyage

  • Any airfare, whether on scheduled or charter flights
  • Pre- and post- land arrangements.
  • Passport and visa expenses.
  • Government arrival and departure taxes.
  • Meals ashore.
  • Baggage, cancellation and personal insurance (which is strongly recommended).
  • Excess baggage charges and all items of a personal nature such as laundry, bar, beverage charges and telecommunication charges.
  • The customary gratuity at the end of the voyages for stewards and other service personnel aboard (guidelines will be provided).

There are daily flights from Oslo to Svalbard and we will secure a group rate for our round trip flights with SAS. Group rates are only possible when everyone takes the same flights in and out of Svalbard. 

Svalbard is a fascinating archipelago located in the Arctic Ocean, administered by Norway.

Polar night and midnight sun : Due to it’s high latitude Svalbard  experiences polar day and polar night leading to 24 hour daylight! Svalbard is abundant with wildlife to include polar bears, arctic fox, reindeer and several seabirds. There are actually more polar bears than people! Svalbard is home to the SVALBARD GLOBAL SEED VAULT, an underground facility that acts as a global back up for the world’s seed banks. Approx  60 % of the archipelago’s surface area  is covered by glaciers and Svalbard is known for its stunning glaciers, mountains and fjords.  Svalbard serves as an important location for scientific research due to it’s unique Arctic environment. Researchers study a range of disciplines to include climate change ,glaciology, polar eco-systems and space research.  Svalbard is governed by the Svalbard Treaty of 1920 which grants it unique international status.  

  1. Arrange a call / zoom / Skype with Julie if it’s your first trip with Mountain High
  2. Request and complete the booking form, make a 20 % deposit and send along a copy of the passport you will be traveling  on. The balance of the trip fees is payable by the 24 th April   2024
  3. Start getting fit !
  4. Book your flights to Oslo and keep an eye out for updates on the Oslo – Longyearbyen-Oslo group flight options. Arrange travel insurance to include cancel for any reason cover
  5. Please send all correspondence to and copy into

Contact details Julie 
Tel/ What’s app : +971 50 6595536

Uncharted Waters

This trip is part of a series

experience the three ‘R’s’ of new world travel…


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