Spitsbergen, Svalbard, Norway
Continued from page 8
ABOVE: An aerial view of Longyearbyen in
summer, with the town center to the left of the Longyear River, the Port of Longyear on the right, and the
Adventfjord in the foreground. Recently, the town has earned attention as the
site of the
Vault, a "doomsday seedbank" that will
hold genetic material from agricultural and wild plants around the world.
Planning tips and Web links
When to come
Longyearbyen is easy to reach year-round, thanks to daily
airline service from Tromsų and (in summer) from
Most tourists arrive during the
summer months, when visitors can select from a long menu of expedition
cruises, wilderness treks, kayak camps, summer skiing, etc. (See this article's
for more details.)
If you're interested in
snowmobiling, ski touring, or exploring the inside of a glacier, consider a
winter trip to Longyearbyen, when you can enjoy outdoor activities under the
Making the most of your time and money
If you're just looking for a taste of the Arctic, you may have
trouble justifying a trip from the U.S., Britain, or another distant country. So
here's a suggestion: Combine a trip to Longyearbyen and Svalbard with a vacation
on the Norwegian mainland. For example, you could fly to
Oslo, ride the train to
Bergen on Norway's West Coast, and
Norwegian Coastal Voyage (Hurtigruten) cruise ferry to
which has frequent air service to Longyearbyen.
Tourism links for Svalbard and Longyearbyen
The tourist office's Englilsh-language Web site is packed with travel advice for
Spitsbergen and the Svalbard archipelago.
This article offers an adequate, if sketchy, overview of the town and its
The leading travel agency, tour organizer, and expedition outfitter in Svalbard
offers everything from coal-mine visits to Arctic cruises. (See my article and
photo diary about a boat trip to the
Fuglefjell Bird Cliffs of
Nordstjernen - Spitsbergen adventure cruise
My 8-page illustrated cruise review is accompanied by a 114-page day-by-day
The article that you're now reading is accompanied by nearly two dozen captioned photos.
Also see our article and photo diary of an
Isfjord boat trip to the
Fuglefjell bird cliffs and our
review and photo gallery at Europeforcruisers.com.
the Svalbard Islands
If you can tolerate thumbnail-size images and a "Travel-Images.com" logo in big
letters on each photo, this album is worth a look.
Longyearbyen photos with captions
Aerial photo copyright © Stefan Tordenmalm.
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