Svalbard

Have you ever listened to the Arctic silence?

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BASECAMP EXPLORER SPITSBERGEN

Set high in the Arctic Ocean, the remote Svalbard archipelago extends between 74 and 81° north. It is the northernmost place in Europe, and is the farthest north you can travel by scheduled flight.

Spitsbergen offers Arctic experiences on the edge of the inhabitable world, but it’s not as inaccessible as people might think. Start in the morning from the central Europe and you will be in Longyearbyen by mid-day. And in one of our remote stations by the evening. There are no roads beyond Longyearbyen. Here, you really are on the edge of civilization. Outside the city only, the vast wilderness is waiting for you. Despite its history of coal mining and trapping, Spitsbergen is still mainly pristine wilderness. One of the most fragile ecosystems anywhere on Earth.

It is important for us as a tourism company to take care of the Arctic nature. We welcome you warmly to join us on our ecological expeditions. Not only do you get to experience some of the rarest nature in the world, but you can do it with a clear conscience. Furthermore, knowing that together we have taken one step closer to change the course of global warming.

By the end of October the last rays of the sun disappear below the horizon, and Svalbard heads towards a period of darkness. For more than two months, between mid-November and the end of January, darkness prevails around the clock. During the darkest times there is no telling if it is noon or midnight. When the sky is clear, stars light up the sky. The Northern Lights and a full moon bounce their light from the snowcovered mountains, and suddenly the darkness doesn’t seem so overwhelming. By February, the light returns slowly. Light blue, pink, and purple colours light up the scenery. Finally, the sun hits the first mountain peaks.

As the light returns after long and dark polar night, the activity and energy levels on the islands increase – for both people and wildlife. Everyone wants to get out, to see and explore the island. As the daylight grows longer, so do the lengths of the trips. By end of April, midnight sun has returned to warm the landscape. Seals are laying on the fjord ice while people are enjoying their lunch break, both basking in the sun’s warm rays. This is a fantastic time of year for exploring Spitsbergen by snowmobile, dog sled or skis.

After mid-May the snow quickly disappears. Small flowers start to appear along the mountainsides. The rush of bird life replaces the quiet of winter. You can hear glaciers calving, and see vast blue fjords filled with floating ice. This is summer time on Spitsbergen. The midnight sun makes it possible to explore Spitsbergen day or night – whichever suits you best! There is plenty to choose from. Pick a boat safari, go hiking, or try kayaking, joining a dog sled on wheels or hike on a glacier – or simply relax and enjoy yourself.

Basecamp Hotel

At the heart of Longyearbyen, the northernmost town in the world, lies the home of the modern arctic trappers. See the walls covered with driftwood, sealskins and objects that illustrate the past and present of life in the Arctic.

Isfjord Radio Adventure Hotel

This 1933 built solitude outpost for radio operators doesn’t look like much from the outside, but as you enter you’ll discover a different world. The contrast between the rough landscape and the modern hotel is a sight to behold.

Nordenskiöld Lodge

On the moraine shore of the icy fjord, at the edge of the blue glacier, stands our hidden expedition lodge. Switch off your phone. There’s no use for it here, out in the total solitude of Spitsbergen.

Arctic sailing with S/V Linden

How about sailing through the arctic oceans, immersed in the majestic polar landscape, with the sleepy sounds of creaking wooden ship? Just around the corner from North Pole lies the special gathering of arctic islands – the Svalbard Archipelago. The only way to move around these icy islands is on the sea – just like the ancient explorers did.

North Pole Camp

North Pole camp is a mobile tented camp offering modern camping in the arctic wilderness. After a long day travelling like a Polar Explorer, arriving to the camp for a good dinner, few drinks and storytelling takes you to another world.

Trapper’s station

Home of the Arctic trappers and 90 Alaskan huskies, raring to take you for a ride through the Arctic scenery. The Trapper’s Station is a precise replica of the original hunting communities on Svalbard.

Arctic swim

As fresh as it gets

There is nothing quite as refreshing as the air up in the arctic region, but even the air can't compete with an arctic swim. Get y...

Waking up at Isfjord Radio with a special kind of drop-in guest

It is seldom we have drop-in guests at Isfjord Radio Adventure Hotel, but this morning we had a surprise! A polar bear had found h...

Be inspired: Sample Menu from Isfjord Radio Kitchen

When you are staying at Isfjord Radio Adventure Hotel, you are in for a real treat.  In the evening, we are gathering around the d...

OUR ARCTIC FOOD PHILOSOPHY

Reindeer, arctic char, ptarmigan and bearded seal. The hunting history in Svalbard dates back to the 16th century. Even today ther...

The feeling of an Arctic spa

Looking through the big wall-to-wall window, all you can see is the wide horizon over Arctic Ocean. Somewhere out there is the coa...

Afternoon tea in Barentsburg

Barentsburg, the next-door neighbour of Isfjord Radio and the only remaining Russian settlement on Svalbard, is like taking a trip...

The City Abandoned at the world’s end

Three hours by plane to Svalbard, then three hours by open boat, and you find yourself in the northernmost abandoned city: you are...

St Olavs Rose

In summer 2013 Isfjord Radio was awarded the St Olav’s Rose – a hallmark of Norwegian Heritage.

An entire life as a trapper on the island of Svalbard

Trappers went north with dreams of the big catch, the free life, and adventure in the vast wilderness.

MODERNITY MEETS WILDERNESS

Longyearbyen is a strange mix of Arctic nature and modern technology. Here you can find both high speed internet and polar bears, ...

Be a musher your-self!

There is no better way to travel across the frozen tundra than on a husky-drawn sled. With no engine to interrupt the silence, the...

What is Gruve 3 Forest?

At Basecamp Masai Mara, in Kenya, trees has been popping up like mushrooms in rain – well almost. What is this about and what does...

Coal rush to Spitsbergen

If the gold rush to Alaska was a big step to the unknown, exploring Spitsbergen’s mining opportunities was a step even further. La...

Chasing Dreams

As a young man, free in the world and able to choose your own path, it is often a desire to earn bit of money to your back pocket,...

Dugnad – volunteer work

Dugnad is a Norwegian word, meaning the collective help from a group of volunteers. This has been strong basis of the work done at...

Work and holiday at Nordenskiöld

This summer we had a team of volunteers helping to renovate the lodge. It was a true work and holiday, with combination of hard la...

“We can do it”

These were the words of Halvor Bakke - the mind behind the wonderful interiors and the tremendous transformations at Isfjord Radio...

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