Svalbard & Scoresby Sund

 

 

Day 1 - July 27, 2013 - Longyearbyen, Norway – embarkation day

The charter flight arrived on time with 120 new guests. We boarded the buses and headed to the Polar Museum for a quick visit before embarking our ship. It was wonderful to see so many guests that have sailed with us before in other parts of the world!


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Day 2 - July 27, 2013 -  Monacobreen, Svalbard 

 

What a day, today has been. After giving my favourite lecture on birds of the Arctic Ocean, we had an announcement from our Expedition leader that one of our bear guards had spotted a polar bear – 12 Nautical miles away. The bear was on a small island in Woodfjorden at the very northern tip of the island of Spitsbergen.

 


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Day 3 - July 28, 2013 -  Ice cruising in the Arctic Ocean

 Today was perhaps the best day I have had this summer in Svalbard. We saw more bears in one morning than we had seen on some previous trips. The skies were blue and dotted with geometrically arranged cumuli typical of mackerel skies. We had very good visibility, sea ice as far as the eyes could see, and mild temperatures. To top it all off, in the evening we saw hundreds of Walrus.


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Day 4 - July 29, 2013 -  Svalbard

 The calm waters inside Palanderbukta awaited us this morning as the Silver Explorer eased her way into the bay. Skies were overcast but not a breath of wind stirred the surface of the water. After breakfast we headed ashore to explore the polar desert here.


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Day 5 - July 30, 2013 - 14th of July Glacier and at sea

At 7:30 in the morning, the Silver Explorer reached the entrance of the Krossfjord on the western side of Spitsbergen and dropped anchor right in front of the blue and white cliff that was named the 14th of July glacier by French explorers after their national day.


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Day 6 - July 31, 2013 - At sea, en route to Scoresby Sound, Greenland

A day at sea – finally some time to “recover” from all the activities we had during our very successful cruise through the Svalbard archipelago.


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Day 7 - August 1, 2013 - Approaching Scoresby Sund, East Coast , Greenland

Soon enough we could spot at least one Humpback Whale but even better . . . two enormous Blue Whales. Yes, we have been privileged enough to sight one of the rarest, endangered species on Earth. These magnificent creatures are larger than any dinosaur, and to see two was absolutely fantastic!


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Day 8 - August 2, 2013 - Danmarksi, Scoresby Sund, Greenland

WOW – Scoresby Sund! What an amazing place. I could not believe the stunning scenery as I walked onto deck. It is one of those locations that I had always heard about…and here I am.


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Day 9 - August 3, 2013 - Scorseby Sund, Greenland

The ice was truly an incredible sight, but the highlight perhaps for some of the guests was the last “penguin bar”. The hotel department had set up a zodiac behind an iceberg which was serving champagne and snacks for our guests to refuel before dinner.


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Day 10 - August 4, 2013 - Scoresbysund, Greenland

During lunch we approached the small town with the long name of Ittoqqortoormiit nestled near the northern entrance of Scoresbysund. This town of less than 500 people sat perched on a hill slope, its colourful houses facing east with magnificent views out onto the icebergs in the distance.


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Day 11 - August 5, 2013 - At sea, en route to Iceland

Today I had a most enjoyable morning at sea. Knowing how rough the Denmark Strait can be, I can fully appreciate the calm conditions we experienced throughout the day.


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Day 12 - August 6, 2013 - Grundarfjodur, Iceland

Today started out the same as just about every other day on this voyage, just perfect! The weather conditions were spectacular, with blue skies and cirrus clouds streaked across the sky. We docked at Grundarfjordur, where we are to have a full day bus tour exploring around the whole Peninsula known as Snaefellsnes.


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