Arctic Islands Expedition

Arctic Islands Expedition

from $2,088 per person

Most people island-hop in Greece or the Caribbean - ‘explorers’ go island-hopping in the Arctic!


  • Visit four islands in the Northern Hemisphere
  • Experience the incredible 24-hour Midnight Sun
  • Have a chance to see polar bears
  • Participate in exciting outings and learn from the knowledgeable Expedition Team

This very special‘island hopping’ expedition in the Arctic Ocean takes you from the Norwegian mainland, via Bjørnøya, to Spitsbergen, Jan Mayen, and Iceland. We can surely say that this is one of our most diverse expeditions ever!

Leaving Tromsø and crossing the Arctic Ocean, the only island you will see between the Norwegian mainland and Spitsbergen is Bjørnøya. Being this far north and this isolated, there are no permanent settlers here, except for the nine people working at the Norwegian meteorological station. If you see them, give them a wave!

A heartfelt celebration in the cold Arctic

In addition to seeing majestic mountains, vast wilderness, and the most scenic fjords of Spitsbergen, you will visit the northernmost community on Earth:Ny-Ålesund. May 17 is Norway’s national day, and the people of Longyearbyen take this celebration quite seriously. You’ll see marching bands, flags, folk costumes, and hear some singing. Feel free to join in!

Discover the true meaning of isolated

Jan Mayen is the most isolated island on the Northern Hemisphere. Tourists visiting and landing on the shores of Jan Mayen are extremely rare. Setting foot on this exotic outpost will be theexperience of a lifetime.

Iceland – a destination of excellence

Unspoiled and dramatic nature, rugged landscapes featuring volcanic craters, caves, lava fields, geothermal waters, and hot springs – Iceland isa lush contrast to the previous stops. The adventure ends in Reykjavik. Why not spend a day or two here as theperfect end to your Arctic holiday?

Voyage Itinerary

This is an expedition where the elements rule, and the weather, wind and ice conditions will determine our schedule. Safety is paramount and the captain will decide the final sailing itinerary during the voyage. Hence, this itinerary is just an indication of what you can experience and why every expedition with Hurtigruten is unique.

Day 1:Tromsø

At a latitude of nearly 70 degrees north, the same as Alaska and Siberia, you find Tromsø, beautifully set in a landscape  of islands, fjords and mountain peaks. It is the capital of Northern Norway and the largest city in the Nordic countries north of the Arctic Circle. Tromsø is a lively, colourful town rich in Arctic history. In spring the extended daylight lasts nearly 24 hours. Tromsø is often referred to as the Gateway to the Arctic. In the early days, explorers, hunters and polar seafarers roamed the streets of the city. Wives and children waved good-bye to those who sail northbound to spend the winter in Spitsbergen or North-East Greenland. Young, ambitious explorers like Roald Amundsen came to town to recruit capable hands for future adventures. And your adventure starts here as well. 

Day 2:Bjørnøya

Halfway between the Norwegian mainland and Spitsbergen you find the small island of Bjørnøya. The first you will observe is its 400 meters high mountain walls rising straight out of the sea and distinctive spires and arches located along the southern coast. As we sail further north you’ll see that the rest of the island is flat. We will attempt a rare landing on this iconic island.

Day 3:South Spitsbergen National Park, Hornsund

Majestic peaks and dramatic fjords make our visit to Hornsund special. It is the southernmost fjord in Svalbard. Traces of human activity spanning 400 years can be found at almost all landing sites. The relatively small fjord has a long tradition in the Hurtigruten history. The old steamer D/S Lyngen had scheduled stops here to serve trappers in the area. Hornsund's stronghold ended in 1973 when hunting for polar bear was prohibited in all Arctic countries.

Day 4:Ny-Ålesund

Ny-Ålesund is the northernmost community with year-round activity. Scientists from around 15 countries come here to undertake their research. You will find a local museum exhibiting the history of the place, the world’s northernmost post office as well as a small café and a souvenir shop.

Day 5:National Day in Longyearbyen

Longyearbyen is truly a fascinating place, and today you will probably find it even more intriguing. Every nation has a national day, but not all of them celebrate as enthusiastically as the Norwegians do on their Constitution Day, May 17th . There are no military parades, but colourful processions of marching bands and children carrying flags and banners. You will see people in beautiful folk costumes called "bunad". The different designs are typically elaborate, with embroidery, scarves, shawls and hand-made jewellery, indicating where in Norway the wearer's ancestry lies. Almost all of Longyearbyen's 2,100 inhabitants take part in the procession - and you are welcome to join too. MS Fram will bring their banner and Norwegian flags. Ice cream, food, cakes and drinks are also a big part of the celebration.

Day 6:At sea

This is an ideal day to participate in expert lectures from our expedition team.

Day 7:Jan Mayen

Jan Mayen is the most isolated island in the Northern Hemisphere. The closest land mass is Iceland some 600 kilometres away and Norway, almost 1000 kilometres to the east. The volcano Beerenberg is the northernmost active volcano on earth and had its last eruption in 1985. It is also one of the highest mountains in Norway with its perfectly coned shape and a summit at 2277 meters above sea level. In the 16th century Dutch whalers operated out of Jan Mayen and today a Norwegian weather station occupies a few souls all year round having mail dropped from a plane occasionally. Tourist visits to Jan Mayen are extremely rare, and arrivals by boat even rarer. We will do our best to make it possible to set foot on this exotic outpost. This will be an experience of a lifetime.

Day 8:At sea

Spending a day on sea is great for relaxing, sorting photos and enjoying lectures.

Day 9:Ísafjörður

Ísafjörður is a destination of excellence and the ideal place for spotting wildlife in their natural habitats. It’s a must-see for any serious explorer. Take a stroll around this cosy town and enjoy its diverse architecture. You'll find the country's oldest dwelling here, along with other fine examples of timber houses built by wealthy foreign traders in the 18th century. We offer several optional excursions to let you discover this area.

Day 10:Reykjavik

The Reykjavik area is great for recreational activities. The dramatic, rugged landscape features volcanic craters, caves, lava fields, geothermal waters and hot springs. A variety of restaurants, museums, churches, lighthouses and festivals add a surprisingly rich cultural offering.