Small vessel
arctic expedition

May 15 - 22 2023

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. The light will be harsh if the sky is clear in the daytime, 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.

 

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, 8 spots available
NOK 69 000,- pr. pax

Double cabin, shared facilities, 1 spots available for a female. 
NOK 65 500,- pr. pax

 

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.

Ship: MS Malmö

Practical information

WHY WE PREFER SVALBARD

Dramatic landscapes
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.

Other 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

Itinerary

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 Information

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.

Booking Inquiry

    Check if you wish to join the list

READ SOME OF THE BLOGS FROM THE SVALBARD TOURS

Blog posts about Svalbard

svalbard seasons

Svalbard Seasons

14. April 2020

Svalbard seasons timing We are often asked the questions, “ When should I go to Svalbard? ” and “ When is the best time up there?”. Depending on exactly what the person would like to…

Read more
arctic expeditions

Svalbard Photography Expedition Summer June 2018

20. July 2018

Arctic Expedition June 2018 Aboard MS Freya we was lucky to explore the waters of Svalbard once again. After over 40 expeditions in the Svalbard area and some thorough examination of the ice maps our…

Read more
wildlife photography

Svalbard Photography Expedition Early Summer May 2018

2. June 2018

Svalbard wildlife photography expedition in May 2018 Once again Arctic Wildlife Tours could bring the Norwegian photographer Audun Rikardsen as one of the photo guides hosting our spring Svalbard expedition onboard the expedition ship MS…

Read more