Spitsbergen, Svalbard, Norway
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 Svalbard Global Seed Vault, a "doomsday seedbank" that will hold genetic material from agricultural and wild plants around the world.
Plannng tips and Web links
When to come
Longyearbyen is easy to reach year-round, thanks to daily airline service from Tromsø and (in summer) from Oslo.
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 excursions section 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 Northern Lights.
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 catch a Norwegian Coastal Voyage (Hurtigruten) cruise ferry to Tromsø, which has frequent air service to Longyearbyen.
Tourism links for Svalbard and Longyearbyen
Nordstjernen - Spitsbergen adventure cruise
the Svalbard Islands
Next page: Longyearbyen photos with captions
Copyright © 1996-2013 Durant Imboden and Cheryl Imboden. All rights reserved.