Trapper Lodge

P.O. Box 316, Longyearbyen, 9171, Norway

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BarentsburgBarentsburg

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The Wine CellarThe Wine Cellar

Polarbear in the SAS hotelPolarbear in the SAS hotel

Forum Posts

when to go - questions on ice and boat trips

by emppu2

Hi,

I'm planning to visit Longyearbyen this summer, either in the beginning of June, towards the end of June or the beginning of July. Which timing would be best, if my main interest is to see the great walls of ice from the sea, and glaciers?

Could there be a risk, at any time during the summer season, that either the boat routes are not open or that there are not enought people for the cruise to take off? Another question: I'm only there for a few days, so I could just get on a day-cruise to see anything. Which cruise would you recommend as the most impressive one with views on ice? The names of different glaciers don't say too much to me at the tourism web site, so I'm puzzled.

Thanks in advance for hints!

Re: when to go - questions on ice and boat trips

by globetrott

my last time in Lonyearbyen was 25 years ago,but I am sure it is still quite the same : cruiseships have this as a stop and some ships like Nordstjernen of Hurtigruten have regular cruises of 4 days+ from there, BUT I dont think that you can just go there and get a cruise without booking some time in advance.
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there will be daytrips that you can book, but I think that the famous glaciers are quite far away. Tours rather go to Barentsburg and for wildlife of the area,

Re: when to go - questions on ice and boat trips

by Donna_in_India

Hi - we were there the 3rd week of May as things were just getting a little slushy so I imagine the conditions would be pretty similar in the beginning of June. End of June/beginning of July would probably be nicer for what you want to do. (We were interested in the winter activities, which were great.) I'm not sure what site you checked but http://www.spitsbergentravel.no/eng/ lists several day excursions/activities by season. I don't think you would have a problem of not enough people and as long as you are here for a few days, I'm sure you'll have the opportunity to see what you want. Sorry I cannot be of any help with speicifc glaciers.

Re: when to go - questions on ice and boat trips

by Saagar

There are normally two cruise routes from Longyearbyen that take you on day trips to glacier fronts: One goes to outer Isfjorden and normally takes in Barentsburg, bird cliffs and perhaps Icefjord Radio (radio station turned hotel)as well. The glacier in question here is the Esmark Glacier at Ymer Bay and Von Post glacier at the Temple Fjord. I guess if you google these names there may be some info and photos. If I am not wrong I have photos of Esmark glacier on my pages - I will check and tell you if I do. For the mos spectacular fjord and glacier choose Von Post. Esmark is still very nice, too. Don't even think of going on a kayak trip to see massive glacier fronts up close: a large cruise ship not so long ago was hit by a falling glacier front with many people hurt and damages to the ship. The ship's captain was tried for going too close to the glacer front. All that said, the local day cruises out of Longyearbyen are safe, with people with local knowledge holding the rudder.

Re: when to go - questions on ice and boat trips

by Saagar

Sorry - the second route is the one to Von Post/Temple Fjord; this was not clear in the my first reply.

Travel Tips for Longyearbyen

Longyearbyen Webcams

by tini58de

If you are fond of seeing what it is like in Longyearbyen, there are several webcams there. But you better be aware of the fact that during winter time you might not really see much, since it is dark most of the day!!!

Vice versa it is nice to look at the webcams in summer, since during midsummer you will have the best of light all day and night!

Longyearbyen town centre

by shiran_d

Services:
The number of services available in Longyearbyen is wide-ranging. Among the shops and services available are the following: a bakery, a bank, bars, a library, car rental, camping, shops, hair stylists, an art gallery, a sports hall, accommodation facilities, cafes, a cinema, a church, moped rental, a museum, a post office, a travel agency, restaurants, snowmobile rental, a swimming hall, a hospital, bicycle rental, a dentist, a taxi service, telephone services, a tourist information centre, a store selling wine and spirits and weapon rental.

Not a problem.

out on deck of the ship in Magdalena Bay

by globetrott

Get propperly dressed - not like this diningroom-steward Michael Globetrott , who simply ran on deck to take a few pics, while he actually should have served the afternoon-tea...
On my picture: Magdalena-bay, the absolute highlight of every Svalbard / Spitzbergen-cruise. When you are lucky, you may see the glaciers breaking and falling into the sea. The day when this picture was taken was simply perfect for photography - many more pics are on my ARCTIC-page, and these pics are scanned slides with a much better quality than the scanned super-8 films.

don't expect a tidy town !

by globetrott

Do not expect a tidy town with linear and asphalted streets, most of the year the streets are frozen and covered with snow, putting asphalt on them would not make a lot of sense. Be carefull, when walking around and one of the big trucks of the mining-companies is approaching : try to escape as far as possible from the street, they take a lot of dust with them and all of your clothings might be full of dust afterwards. It even seems to be quite funny for them to "take the noble cruising-passengers back to earth"

The Snowmobile reception

by shiran_d

We had all an introduction to snowmobile driving. All organised snowmobile tours include: briefing, snowmobile, fuel, snowmobile suit, special boots, outer mittens, leather cap, face mask or balaclava, driving goggles.

Comments

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