Europe for Visitors - Home
Home  Main Index Tour Europe by Ship About Us

Longyearbyen, Svalbard

Travel and Tourist Information


ABOVE: Apartment houses near the Spitsbergen Hotel in Longyearbyen. INSET BELOW: The Svalbard archipelago has more polar bears than people.

photoLongyearbyen is the administrative center of Svalbard, an Arctic territory governed by Norway whose largest island--Spitsbergen--is a haven for nature lovers, Arctic researchers, wilderness trekkers, reindeer, and polar bears.

Longyearbyen is also the world's northernmost municipality, with a population of 1,900 and more amenities than you might expect in such a remote location. (One of the local pubs claims to have the world's third-largest collection of spirits.) Scientists, tourist guides, miners, administrators, and other residents come from more than 30 countries, and though Norwegian is the official language, English is widely understood.

In the following pages, you'll find practical information and photos to help you plan your visit to Longyearbyen and Svalbard, a region that has been described as "an oasis in a world of ice."

Next page: Location and history

Longyearbyen tourist information:
Introduction Restaurants
History, background Shopping
Sights, excursions Arrival and departure
Cruises, boat trips Planning tips, Web links
Hotels, guesthouses, camping Photos with captions

Related articles:
Bird Cliffs of Spitsbergen - Fuglefjellet boat trip
MS Nordstjernen - Spitsbergen Adventure Cruise

"Best of the Web"
- Forbes and The Washington Post


Copyright (c) iStockphoto/arosoft

Need a car in Europe?

Tourist car leases (21+ days)

If you live outside the EU, a tax-free Renault or Peugeot tourist car lease can be cheaper than renting for visits of three weeks or longer. Minimum driver age is 18, there' s no upper age limit, and rates include insurance.

Car Rentals

Auto Europe makes it easy to find the best car and motorhome rental rates in more than 20,000 locations.


More travel advice: