Reaching The North Pole with Dr. Huw Lewis-Jones


Reaching the North Pole for the first time is overwhelming: you will literally be standing at the top of the world, and everywhere you look is south. This glorious moment will be shared with other like-minded passengers and our team of polar experts. On this North Pole voyage, we were lucky to have Huw Lewis-Jones on board. He is a renowned historian and polar author, formerly a Curator of Art at the Scott Polar Research Institute, University of Cambridge. Huw says that the ever-changing Arctic never ceases to amaze no matter how many times you visit.

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Best Time To Visit The Northern Lights



When Is The Best Time To See The Northern Lights?

If you’ve ever traveled far north, you’ve probably been asked, “Did you see the northern lights?” The lights, are on nearly every traveler’s wish list. Even if you’ve seen photos or videos of this natural phenomena, there is nothing like experiencing them in person. If you’re planning to travel and the northern lights are one of your must-sees, considering the time of year is essential. While your location will be a factor in whether you’re able to see the lights (they’re more visible the higher north you travel on the globe), the time of year also affects your chance of experiencing the awesome beauty of this spectacle. Knowing the best time to visit the northern lights will help you determine when to plan your trip.

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Arctic Expeditions By Season


It may be difficult to imagine the famously cold Arctic having seasons. While its summer might not be equivalent to that of Mexico or sunny California, Arctic seasons have distinct variance in climate, wildlife activity and overall environment.

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Tips for Kayaking in the Polar Regions



How to have the best paddling experience

The polar regions are the ultimate destination for active travel lovers. From hiking to camping and kayaking, every expedition day is filled with unscripted adventures and new worlds to conquer. A kayak can take you right where the action is, allowing you to venture further into the maze of ethereal glaciers and towering icebergs, paddling in the placid waters along with whales, penguins, and marine mammals. You’re in for dramatic scenery, close encounters with the abundant wildlife and a chance to become one with nature.

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Top Spots for Kayaking in the Arctic



How to Find the Best Arctic Paddling Destinations

The Arctic closely guards some of the most unique and rewarding kayaking opportunities on the planet. While the Arctic regions offer all the pristine wilderness values and incredible wildlife that could be desired of a perfect kayaking adventure, their remoteness and inaccessibility mean that few people have the opportunity to experience the thrill and serenity of kayaking in these amazing places.

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The Fjords of East Greenland

Secrets of the Scoresby Sund fjord system

Some areas of our planet are notable for their beautiful fjords: Norway, Alaska, Chile and New Zealand, to name a few. But the fjords of Scoresby Sund in East Greenland belong in a class of their own. For one thing, the enormity of this fjord system (38,000 km2) is unmatched in the world. For another thing, the environment is exceptionally wild and untouched—there are no roads outside the one permanent Inuit settlement (Ittoqqortoormiit, pop. 452) and only a handful of scattered cabins and historical huts remind you that humans ever set foot in this area larger than Belgium. But those aren’t the only reasons you’ll love these fjords. Read on to find out why Scoresby Sund is arguably the most interesting and attractive of all fjord systems.

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Franz Josef Land Revealed



Secrets of the Russian High Arctic

The 191 islands of the Franz Josef Land Archipelago have long been shrouded in mystery and secrecy. These remote islands, located northeast of Svalbard and between the Russian mainland and the North Pole, are notoriously inaccessible due to heavy sea-ice conditions and severe weather for a good portion of the year. During the Soviet era, travel restrictions imposed by Russian authorities made these islands almost completely off limits to tourists. Even now, independent travel to the Franz Josef Land Archipelago is nearly impossible. Access is permitted only with an expedition cruise ship or icebreaker. For the few visitors who make the journey to these enigmatic islands of the Russian High Arctic, the sense of remoteness in place and time is an undeniable attraction. Even more compelling are the secrets that seem to reveal themselves as if coming back from the depths of history. Here are a few of the astonishing highlights of a Franz Josef Land cruise.

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The High Arctic: Kingdom of Polar Bears


Polar Bear Safety in Svalbard and Franz Josef Land

To see a polar bear in the wild is at the top of many people’s must-do lists. Svalbard and Franz Josef Land are two of the very best places to find polar bears in their natural habitat. In these High Arctic territories, polar bears can be seen engaging in natural behaviors such as stalking seals on sea ice, caring for their cubs, roaming across the vast tundra wilderness, and perhaps devouring a whale or walrus carcass. Remarkably close viewing can sometimes be had from the ship or on a Zodiac cruise. However, close encounters with polar bears on land must certainly be avoided. Polar bear safety will be paramount on your cruise to Svalbard or Franz Josef Land.


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Whales of Svalbard



Arctic whale-watching on a cruise around Spitsbergen

Now enjoying protection after centuries of relentless hunting, whales are returning to the waters of Svalbard. Whales found feeding in the beautiful fjords and rich polar seas around Spitsbergen provide some of the best whale-watching to be had anywhere. Long polar days afford cruise passengers the chance to spot whales during excursions and from the deck of the ship anytime. Here are some whale species to look for during your Spitsbergen cruise.

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Mysteries of the Polar Circles


What’s Inside the Arctic and Antarctic Circles?

Maps of the world show many lines that seem to have nothing to do with the world itself. What’s more, the crossing of these geographical lines is often accompanied by a good deal of ceremony and celebration on cruise ships. Special significance is often attached to the crossing of the so-called Polar Circles. You might be asking, what are these circles? Where are they and why do they exist? And most importantly, how can I cross them and what will I find on the other side?

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