The Polar Bear Special
DURATION:8 Days/ 7 NightsREGION:ArcticSHIP:Plancius
Join an expedition aboard the Polar Bear Special! The Plancius will sail along the pack-ice of North Spitsbergen, where you will have the best opportunities to spot the King of the Arctic, the iconic polar bear. Sail to Raudfjord on the north coast of West Spitsbergen, a beautiful fjord dominated by spectacular glaciers and favoured
by Ringed and Bearded Seal. The cliffs and shoreline of the fjord also support thriving seabird colonies and a surprisingly rich vegetation, which flourishes in sheltered spots. Polar bear are often seen here. Board the zodiacs for cruises amongst the icebergs and glaciers, take guided walks ashore and visit charming villages.
We have multiple departure dates for this cruise. Select a year and month to view itineraries for alternative departure dates.
Operated by: Oceanwide Expeditions
M/V Plancius was launched in 1976 as an oceanographic research vessel for the Royal Dutch Navy a role she maintained until June 2004, at which time she was purchased by current operator Oceanwide Expeditions. She was completely rebuilt and refurbished as a 116-passenger expedition vessel in 2009 and complies with the latest SOLAS (Safety Of Life At Sea) regulations. Plancius is classed by Lloyd’s Register with an ice-rating of 1D and flies the Dutch flag. Limited to no more than 116 passengers and 53 cabins, her size ensures a flexible polar experience with maximum wildlife opportunities. She is equipped with 10 Mark V zodiacs, including 40 HP 4-stroke outboard engines and 2 gangways on the starboard side, guaranteeing a swift zodiac operation. Plancius is comfortable and well-decorated, but is not a luxury vessel. Her voyages in the Arctic and Antarctic regions are primarily defined by an exploratory educational travel programme, spending as much time ashore as possible.
Your cruise price includes:
- 7 night North Spitsbergen voyage aboard the Plancius
- 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
- Transfer and baggage handling between ship and in Longyearbyen post cruise
- All miscellaneous service taxes and port charges throughout the programme
- AECO fees and governmental taxes
- Comprehensive pre-departure material
Your cruise price does not include:
- Any airfare, whether on scheduled or charter flights
- Pre- and post- land arrangements
- Passport and visa expenses
- Government arrival and departure taxes
- Meals ashore
- Travel Insurance (highly recommended - SAVE 20% when purchased with your expedition)
- Excess baggage charges and all items of a personal nature such as laundry, bar, beverage charges and telecommunication charges
- Gratuities at the end of the voyages for stewards and other service personnel aboard - The cruise line recommends $8-10 per passenger per day
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Please note: This cruise is sold in USD
The described itinerary is for guidance only. Programmes may vary depending on local ice and weather conditions, the availability of landing sites and opportunities to see wildlife. The final itinerary will be determined by the Expedition Leader on board. Flexibility is paramount for expedition cruises.
You must be in good general health and you should be able to walk several hours per day. The expedition is ship-based and physically not very demanding. Although as much time as possible is spent ashore, travellers are welcome to remain aboard the ship if they like. To join most excursions, travellers must be able to get up and down the steep gangway from the ship to the water level to board the Zodiacs. Staff will assist travellers in and out of the boats. This will become progressively easier with practice. Ashore it can be slippery and rocky. You are travelling in remote areas without access to sophisticated medical facilities, so you must not join this expedition if you have a life-threatening condition, or need daily medical treatment.
A single supplement of 70% applies for sole use of cabins.