Arctic travel in Spring 2020

Arctic Cruises 2020


The sun has returned, and with it, the Arctic comes back to life. Ice levels meand tricky passage for ships in most regions and with the northern lights still on show now is the time to head to Northern Norway, explore the fjords, strap on some snow shoes and get those aurora photo's you've always dreamt of.


The first of the small ships make their way to Svalbard in April as the ice starts to creep back. They follow the walrs as they return to their summer haunts with a careful eye open for hungry mother bears looking to teach their young cubs how to hunt. For the explorer there's beautifully soft light and great trekking or even skiing opportunities.


By May the high Arctic is already experiencing 24-hour daylight and it is warm enough for the summer's breeding birds to flock northwards. As the sea ice retreats, whales follow it and the rich nutrients along its edge. Larger expedition ships reach Svalbard for the summer season, with great bear spotting opportunities as the breeding season starts. May also sees the first ship arrive in West Greenland.

Best Spring 2020 Cruises

Arctic travel in Summer 2020

Arctic Cruises 2020


Summer is really kicking into action in Svalbard yet there is still huge amounts of ice for walrus to haul out and shed their winter coats. Young seals are quickly learning to fend for themselves as young bear cubs make that as hard as possible as the sun shines for 24 hours a day.


Ice in Svalbard has generally retreated enough to allow ships passage through the stunning Hinlopen Strait and complete a full circumnavigation of Spitsbergen Island. At the same time, the Canadian High Arctic and the Northwest Passage opens up for explorers. On the wildlife front, watch out for scavengers at the bird colonies where parents will be protecting newly-laid eggs.


Those eggs are now hatching and attracting more scavengers as they crack. The Northwest Passage opens up enough for ships to attempt a full transit through its icy channels. At the same time, towards the end of the month, ships start to leave Svalbard and make their way south towards Antarctica.

Best Summer 2020 Cruises

Arctic travel in Autumn 2020

Arctic Cruises 2020


Autumn approaches and with it the temperatures drop again. Darkness increases and the Northern Lights grow stronger across all of the Arctic regions. Greenland remains accessible and it can be a fabulous time to get out trekking in the hills during the day. The wildlife starts to retreat, heading south to warmer climes and female polar bears look for suitable den sites to see out the winter in comfort and safety.


The expedition fleet has departed and much of the Arctic is frozen in for the winter. This is the time to look at land based options in the Arctic with many bears gathering in Churchill.


Winter has taken hold and the people who live above the Arctic circle are left with just a memory of the sun as they dive into 24-hour darkness. Only in Churchill is there frenetic wildlife, with polar bears gathering to hunt along the edge of the ice forming on Hudson Bay.

Best Autumn 2020 Cruises

Land-based adventures

Arctic Cruises 2020

Land-based trips in the Arctic deliver adventure and beauty in abundance. Experiences include camping on the tundra, snowmobiling across frozen expanses, visits to colourful Inuit communities and close encounters with polar bears and belugas. 

Find out more about the Arctic

A Guide to Arctic Travel

A Guide to Arctic Travel

Standing as an ice mass that stretches up to 14 million square miles at peak winter, the Arctic is one of the last wildernesses left on Earth. The Frozen Planet series inspired …

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Arctic Cruise Ships

Arctic Cruise Ships

We partner with selected ice-strengthened Arctic expedition vessels from small yachts and nimble little ships with convivial atmospheres, to larger Russian research boats and …

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