ARCTIC WILDLIFE TOURS MAY EXPEDITION 2023 OVERVIEW
Welcome to one of our Svalbard tours in early May, 2023. The early spring season is a truly unique month. The sky is bright and the landscape remains covered in snow and ice. Glaciers and mountains grace us with their beauty daily. Svalbard changes rapidly at this time of the year. The drift ice and fjord ice melts, forcing the wildlife to follow. We will also meet flocks of birds migrating northwards.
By May there is already constant light from the midnight sun, but the sun is lower in the sky during the night. Clouds will lower the impact from the sunlight and create different patterns and possibilities for pictures. Nights can still be very cold and it’s possible to see wildlife resting and hunting on the ice-covered fjords.
In this wintery environment, you can experience wildlife encounters in picture-perfect conditions by joining our Svalbard photo expedition. Our wildlife expeditions are the ultimate in polar exploration at any time of year, but in May the light conditions combined with snow and ice covered landscapes create some truly unique photo opportunities.
Nature in the High Arctic constantly changes. On Svalbard, every day is different, and every year is different. The Norwegian-owned company Arctic Wildlife Tours leads this Svalbard tour, a remote area we know and love. That’s important, because this is a land where your guides must know how to handle the constantly-changing weather conditions, drift ice, and wildlife on the move 24 hours a day.
The expedition ship MS Malmö is a ship well-suited to polar explorations. Our Norwegian and Swedish guides that will lead the trip together with experienced crew members all speak excellent English and have long experience hiking and exploring Svalbard. In may we have shorter distances between the hotspots and during 7 nights and 8 days you will experience the best from Svalbard.
You will almost not get a full night of sleep. The guides will work 20 hours a day and work hard to find the best situations you could imagine. In May we will find wildlife and landscapes only short distances from Longyearbyen and Isfjorden.
Dates: May 15 - 22 2023
Duration: 7 nights/8 days
Embark the ship: Longyearbyen, May 15 16:00
Disembark the ship: Longyearbyen, May 22 09:00
Superior cabin, private facilities, 0 spots available
NOK 75 000,- pr. pax
Double cabins, private facilities, 0 spots available(1 double cabin)
69 000,- pr. pax
NOW NOK 59 500,- pr pers.
Double cabin, shared facilities, 0 spot available
Available spots might not be updated at all times. Please ask for update on how many cabins that still are available and which type of cabins by sending us an inquiry. The cabins are double shared cabins, in case you need a single cabin, please ask us.
WHY WE PREFER SVALBARD
In April the landscapes are still lit by a low sun during evenings and mornings and mountain tops will be colored from the redish late evening light. The landscapes are still covered with snow and the glaziers are still frozen in the grip of the winter. Wildlife still rest and live on the ice covered fjords after a long winter.
Polar Bear viewings
After our opinion Svalbard is the best place in the world to find and experience Polar Bears. Its truly something unique to nature enthusiasts, photographers and modern explorers. In spring, like early May, Svalbard is still covered by snow and the fjords are frozen. This is great places to search for wildlife.
We will see Walruses resting on ice or on land, Minky Whales playing around the ship, Bearded Seals and migrating birds from south is increasing day by day; there is an unbelievable amount of wildlife to encounter during an adventure around Svalbard.
SVALBARD AND THE SEASONS
Often referred to by the name of its largest island, Spitsbergen, Svalbard forms part of Norway and, with just 2000 inhabitants, has a very small population. Compared to this the Svalbard population of Polar Bears is 3000 animals. The main cause of this is the harsh weather conditions - in the winter months, thick ice and snow carpets the archipelago. Spitsbergen were discovered by explorer Willem Barentzs in 1596, whilst finding a route to the Far East.
The best time to see polar bears in Svalbard is usually in the summer months, as the ice encompassing the archipelago melts enough for us to navigate the icy waters. At this time, the midnight sun reigns over the dramatic landscapes, casting an ever-glowing, ambient light on the surroundings. In autumn, when the midnight sun is replaced by some fascinating sunsets, the red colors from the sunlight shining through the atmosphere bring back some stunning light situations throughout the Svalbard nature before the polar night covers everything in darkness.
Estimated travel route during this photo tour
This photo tour and itinerary will be planned in accordance with prevailing weather and ice conditions. In May it will still be lot of fjord ice and drifting ice, which limit the areas that is accessible, on the other hand the conditions with snow covered landscapes and frozen fjords will be great experiences this time of the year.
Day 0 We always recommend to arrive Longyearbyen at least one day and night in advance.
Day 1 Departure from Longyearbyen through Isfjorden. Heading north or south, depending on the drift ice situation, into the drifting ice. We also search in the fjords, which will still be frozen and give great opportunities for seeing wildlife.
Day 1-7 We set course for the areas where we know we will meet the drift ice. No matter if we sail north or south this will be the focus. Some of the fjords and islands will be interesting to visit and we will search systematically for wildlife wherever we go. The fjords will still be frozen in this time of the year.
The route is just a estimate for where we can sail. This can, and probably will, be changed as we know this from our earlier expeditions.
Day 8 Leaving the ship after breakfast and prepare the travel home.
Booking Inquiry for Svalbard photo expedition
Registration: You register by sending in the booking forms we send you upon your request. This inquiry is not a binding booking.
After sending us an inquiry we will send you the booking forms by email. Send in the completed reservation/booking after receiving them. We will inform you about deposit payments and payment method as soon as you inquire with us. Payments can be done either by wire transfer or credit card payments. Receiving your booking form and a deposit payment will be a confirmed booking.
READ SOME OF THE BLOGS FROM THE SVALBARD TOURS
Blog posts about Svalbard
National Geographic photographer Stefano Unterthiner
Stefano Unterthiner join us regularly for doing workshops we now have named Masterclass onboard. Stefano recently gave out his book about climate changes on Svalbard. Growing up in the mountains of Northwest Italy, Stefano Unterthiner…Read more
The return of the Walrus on Svalbard
The Walrus is one of the species we see more and more in Svalbard. The populations are growing after being almost exterminated back in the 1960`s. The story about the return of the Walrus on Svalbard…Read more
Photographer Ömer Acar on photographing polar bears and swimming in polar water
With a love for spending time in nature, and wanting to photograph wildlife in the arctic circles, Ömer Acar booked a trip to exotic Svalbard through Arctic Wildlife Tours AS.Read more