North Atlantic Expedition, a True Arctic Adventure
Next DepartureJun. 5, 2024
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, Kayaking, Lectures, Photography, Wildlife observations, Zodiac
This voyage is the perfect chance to experience the Arctic region's early summer splendour. Witness magnificent scenery and spectacular nature on some of the northernmost islands of planet Earth.
Arrive in the vibrant Icelandic capital Reykjavík, and embark Ocean Albatros for an expedition voyage like no other. This unique voyage plans to visit three of the Arctic's most spectacular islands, on an odyssey through the North Atlantic to the high Arctic. Departing from the subpolar metropolis of Reykjavík, we will venture towards the tiny traditional village of Siglufjörður, and land on Grímsey, Iceland's northernmost island, straddling the Arctic Circle.
From Iceland we venture into the unknown, heading for the enigmatic isle of Jan Mayen, Earth's northernmost volcano and one of the most isolated and spectacular islands anywhere in the world. This island is home to vast numbers of seabirds, and is an excellent place to spot whales, which like us, are migrating northwards. From Jan Mayen, we will set a course for Svalbard, following the migrating birds which come to nest on this isolated high Arctic archipelago. This far north, the sun never sets, and life moves at a frenetic rhythm as wildlife feed and raise their young on summer's brief bounty. Seabirds, seals, walrus and reindeer are just some of the wildlife we hope to find in this high Arctic paradise - maybe even a glimpse of the polar bear, King of the Arctic. With five days to explore this breathtaking Arctic archipelago, we will have ample time to experience the fascinating history of Svalbard, witness jaw-dropping mountains, fjords and glaciers, and get up close and personal with polar nature.
There are few wilder, more magnificent and untouched places than the Arctic islands of the North Atlantic! And few ships better suited than Ocean Albatros for such a voyage. Experience with us!
Facts about North Atlantic Expedition, a True Arctic Adventure
The rock-like columns of Hallgrímskirkja Church loom over the city of Reykjavik, a hip Scandinavian capital which needs little introduction. With new Nordic cuisine, excellent shopping, fantastic excursions and an easy relaxed vibe, Reykjavik is one of Scandinavia's most welcoming and exciting cities. Explore the city's world class (and often very quirky) museums, shop for snuggly local sweaters, or simply watch this bustling city in action on a cozy cafe terrace.
MV Ocean Albatros awaits embarkation in the city's bustling harbour, with comfortable staterooms ready to welcome our guests. After our mandatory safety briefings and lifeboat drill, Ocean Albatros will sail out of Reykjavík and chart a course for the majesty of the Snæfellsnes Pensinsula.
At sea, en route to Siglufjörður
From Iceland's bustling capital, we will sail around the northwestern tip of this rugged island, en route to the town of Siglufjörður.
The waters around Iceland are some of the richest on planet Earth; here, the warm currents of the Gulf Stream meet the cold East Greenland current, producing waters rich in oxygen and nutrients. Plankton bloom in these productive waters, and they in turn nourish a plethora of species. As we round the Westfjords (the rugged peninsula forming Iceland's northwest corner), join your expedition team on deck to watch for the endemic wildlife of this unique seascape. Puffins bob along the waves, diving into the chilly depths in search of food, while fulmars and other seabirds glide along the side of the vessel. If we are lucky, we may witness the whales which come to feast on the vast shoals of herring in the area. Your experienced onboard guides will regale our guests with tales of Iceland's rich foklore, culture and unique marine ecosystems.
A day at sea is the ideal time to familiarise yourself with your expedition vessel; relax in the Observation Lounge with a coffee and a pair of binoculars, take in an expertly crafted lecture to learn more about the region, or enjoy a specially made cocktail with new friends as we approach Siglufjörður.
Siglufjörður and Grímsey, Iceland
In the morning, Ocean Albatros will arrive in the small town of Siglufjörður, the northernmost town on the Icelandic mainland. Like almost every town in Iceland, the harbour is the heart of the town, which boomed from a tiny hamlet to a true town in the 1940s and 50s during the herring boom. This little fish has been the mainstay of the town's economy since time immemorial, and made Siglufjörður one of Iceland's largest towns in the 1950s.
Siglufjörður is a town that has fully embraced its history and identity - everywhere in town, the herring reigns supreme! The Herring Era Museum, a series of period buildings shows the traditional processing of these fish, which continues to this day. The town occupies one of the most stunning fjords (bearing the same name) in Iceland; up to 18 species of birds can be found in the area, making it a hugely popular spot for visitors driving the ring road of Iceland. Discover the maritime and fishing heritage of the town on the Siglufjörður Herring Experience (additional fee applies).
Over lunch, we will re-embark Ocean Albatros and reposition from Siglufjörður to Grimsey, a small island off Iceland's northern coast. This tiny emerald island is the only part of Iceland which crosses the Arctic Circle - indeed, it runs directly through the northern half of the island. The spot is marked by a massive concrete sphere "Orbus et Globus", a sculpture which is moved annually to account for tiny changes in Earth's orbit (and therefore in the position of the Arctic Circle). The island is home to only around 70 hardy locals, but also to thousands of seabirds. Watch out for curious puffins peeking out of their burrows, and beware the territorial Arctic terns overhead! The island holds a huge tern population, and workers often have to clear the runway of these elegant yet feisty little birds to allow planes to land. The visit to Grimsey includes a guided walk of the island with local guides.
Grimsey marks our official passage into the Arctic; from here, we are sailing into the unknown as we head next for the enigmatic island of Jan Mayen.
An optional excursion is available this day: the Siglufjörður Herring Experience.
At sea, en route to Jan Mayen
Leaving Iceland behind, Ocean Albatros will spend a day at sea en rotue to Jan Mayen, an isolated volcanic island roughly equidistant between Greenland, Svalbard and Iceland. Here, warmer water from the Atlantic meets the cold waters of East Greenland, often producing murky foggy conditions. However, the mixing of waters produces nutritious waters which nourish the wildlife of the area - from the vast shoals of herring so important to towns like Siglufjörður, to the whales which grow more common as we approach the shores of Jan Mayen.
Days at sea are never dull. We will arrange a variety of activities onboard for our guests to enjoy to engage the mind, body and soul. Join your knowledgeable Expedition Team lecturers in the Theatre to hear specially-crafted lectures on local history, wildlife, geology, culture and more, unwind with a massage in the Albatros Polar Spa, or simply watch the seabirds gliding along the ship from our hot tubs as the Ocean Albatros flies across the Davis Strait.
The active volcanic island of Jan Mayen lies approximately equidistant between Svalbard, Greenland and Iceland. If not exactly in the middle of the Greenland Sea, it is located precisely on the Mid Atlantic Ridge, the reason for its volcanic existence. This enigmatic and isolated island is the only active volcano in Norway, and the northernmost active volcano in the world - although the almost perpetual clouds and fog hovering over the summit can make it hard to spot! The volcanic peak of Mt. Beerenberg reaches 2,277m altitude - making it one of Norway's 300 summits exceeding 2000m.
The island is inhabited by only 18 persons, a mixture of scientists running the meteorological station and Norwegian Military personnel. Subject to strong winds and large well, landing on this incredibly remote island can be challenging; we will try to go ashore at the narrowest part of the island, from either south or north, depending on the prevailing wind and surf. The volcanic origin is visible all over with cinder cones, lava flows and the Mount Fuji-like appearance of Beerenberg looming above, while creeping tundra plants and squabbling seabirds eek out a living in the extreme environment of the island.
At sea, en route to Svalbard
From Jan Mayen, we set a northeasterly course, aiming for the high Arctic islands of Svalbard. Situated approximately 800km north of the Norwegian mainland, Svalbard is extremely remote and isolated; Longyearbyen, the islands' "capital" lies only 1200km from the North Pole, 800km closer than Oslo.
Sailing to Svalbard requires a ship capable of handling any ice or rough weather which may be encountered in these northerly seas. To the west of Jan Mayen lies the West Ice, a vast expanse of floating sea ice which hugs the coast of East Greenland, occasionally drifting across the Greenland Sea to Svalbard even in summer. Luckily, Ocean Albatros boasts Polar Code 6 and Ice Class 1A ratings, making her ideal for all but the thickest Arctic ice. The unique X-Bow design of the hull also offers enhanced stability in rough seas.
Keep your binoculars close at hand as we appraoch Svalbard. These islands are a haven for wildlife; as we migrate northwards, so do the whales, seals and birds which live on and around this magnificent archipelago during the summer. As we approach Svalbard, we can expect the concentration of wildlife to increase. As we approach the continental shelf offshore of Svalbard during our second afternoon at sea, keep watch for the whales which come to feed on the abundant plankton which rises to the surface. Once hunted to near-extinction for their oily blubber, these gentle ocean giants are now staging a comeback and are common around Svalbard in summer - a true conservation success story!
Days 7 - 8
We will arrive on the afternoon of the seventh day of our voyage on the forbidding shores of southern Svalbard. Roughly triangular, the southern half of Svalbard comprises countless fjords, islets and skerries, all of which beckon exploration.
At a first glance, this region may seem barren and lifeless. But look closer and the exact opposite it true - saxifrages, Svalbard poppies and other tundra plants defy the brutal weather, their jewel-like flowers reaching for the weak Arctic sunlight. Tiny calico snow buntings flit between crags, while perfectly camouflaged purple sandpipers scamper along the shore. Look higher up on the vegetated slopes, and there - greyish white 'boulders' move and resolve themselves into sheep-sized reindeer: the unique subspecies native to Svalbard. A flash of bluish-black, and the screeches of nearby birds herald the arrival of the Arctic fox, the only native land predator on Svalbard (the polar bear being classified as a marine mammal).
During the ‘night’ (what is night, when the sun never sets?), Ocean Albatros will have repositioned past the saw-toothed mountains of Prins Karls Forland and arrived in magnificent Kongsfjord. Surrounded by craggy mountains, bounded by the magnificent Kongsbreen and Kongvegen Glaciers, and crowned by the Three Crowns (a set of pyramidal mountains said to represent the monarchies of Norway, Sweden and Denmark), this is surely one of the most beautiful and tranquil corners anywhere in the world.
Our first landing will be at the small settlement of Ny Ålesund. Situated further north than Longyearbyen, Ny-Ålesund is Earth's northernmost settlement, if a group of scientific stations, a post office and a single shop open for a few hours can be described as such... You will have to judge for yourself!
These islands' geographical location has made them the staging post for exploratory and scientific expeditions for centuries - a proud legacy which continues to this day. The setting is spectacular, and the scientific projects are as fascinating as the history of the town, which has hosted the Nobile, the Norge and the Fram, Amundsen, Nansen and Nordenskiöld, all legends of polar exploration who passed this lonely outpost seeking to push the boundaries of humanity. The remnants of these expeditions (such as the mooring mast of the Norge) can still be seen today.
One of the largest protected wilderness areas in Europe, North West Svalbard was declared a national park in 1973. The area is famed for its history, which documents some of the earliest human arrivals on Svalbard. While Norse explorers may have sighted these icy shores during the Viking Age, the first definite arrival was the expedition of William Barents, the legendary Dutch explorer for whom the Barents Sea is named. While now protected from human distruption, when Barents arrived in 1596, he noted the vast numbers of whales and seals which were soon prey to English and Dutch whalers, who arrived within a decade of Barents to pillage the area's wildlife. The area occupied the triple point between land, sea and ice, and as such was the perfect location from which to harvest the gentle giants of the oceans.
Sites used to dismember whale carcasses and render them for their precious oil include the Dutch settlement of Smeerenburg, where the remains of 16th Century blubber ovens and building foundations can still be seen. Other sites such as nearby Ytre Norskøya record the darker side of this industrialised slaughter, where hundreds of young men who hoped to make their fortunes are buried thousands of miles from home.
Today, all that remains from this period of history are bones and the scant remnants of human habitation. Slowly reclaimed by creeping Arctic nature, the region is now a anture lovers paradise. Tiny Arctic poppies and purple saxifrage defy the brutal conditions to flower in the brief summer, while geese, eider ducks and other seabirds return to the island to raise their young. Walrus can be found hauled out on beaches, and we must always be on careful lookout for wandering polar bears in this now again wild region. Our experienced Expedition Team will be on contstant lookout for wildlife (including polar bears) throughout the voyage, and we will always inform guests if we spot something exciting!
As we retreat from our voyage's northernmost point, we will set a course for central Spitzbergen. Measuring around 400km in length from north to south, Spitzbergen is the largest island of Svalbard, the archipelago it is synonymous with. The entire island of Spitzbergen experiences a polar tundra climate, with short, cool summers and long, dark, brutally cold winters. Nonetheless, life clings on here, and Svalbard's extraordinary wildlife can be found throughout Spitzbergen.
On our final full day in Svalbard, we will head to wherever offers us the best opportunities for landing, exploration and wildlife experiences, guided by our experienced Expedition Leader and Captain - such is the essence of an Arctic expedition! Perhaps we will find a particularly spectacular glacier, and launch our fleet of Zodiacs to explore the hinterland where ice meets land meets sea. Maybe we will notice a colony of seabirds, or a herd of reindeer, and come ashore to observe them. Or maybe we will be lucky enough to spot a polar bear, king of the Arctic as we cruise along the coastline towards our final destination of Longyearbyen, 'capital' of Svalbard.
Longyearbyen, Svalbard. Disembarkation
During the evening, the Ocean Albatros will reposition to return to the port of Longyearbyen. Even this small town will feel like a metropolis after days of isolation in the wilderness of the Arctic!
Longyearbyen contains the world's northernmost... well, nearly everything! This remarkable little city is not only the northernmost town in the world (if one excludes the tiny research community of Ny-Ålesund, slightly further north on Svalbard), but also hosts the world's northernmost civilian airport, schools, bank and supermarket. The town's rugged frontier edge belies a core of warm Nordic hospitality and coziness - 'koseligt' as the Norwegians say!
After bidding a fond farewell to the crew and Expedition Team of Ocean Albatros, enjoy some time at leisure to explore Longyearbyen before heading to Svalbard Airport to join your flight back to Oslo- with memories to last a lifetime.
- 12-day/11-night cruise on Ocean Albatros in a shared outside double stateroom with a private bathroom in the category chosen
- Flight: Longyearbyen-Oslo
- Local transport in Longyearbyen on day 12
- English-speaking expedition staff
- Near-port walks with the expedition team
- Nature hikes and Zodiac cruises per itinerary
- Information briefings and lectures by the expedition team
- Special photo workshop
- Full board on the ship
- Dinner drink package
- Free coffee, tea, and afternoon snacks on the ship
- Welcome and farewell cocktails
- Taxes, tariffs, and landing fees
- Digital visual journal link after the voyage, including voyage log, gallery, species list, and more
- International flight to Reykjavik/Keflavik
- Extra excursions and activities not mentioned in the itinerary
- Single room supplement and cabin upgrades
- Meals not on board the ship
- Beverages (other than coffee and tea and dinner-drink package)
- Tips for the crew (we recommend USD 16 per person per day)
- Personal expenses
- Transfer to the ship in Reykjavik
- Travel, cancellation, and senior insurance
- Anything not mentioned under ’Inclusions’
Leaving Reykjavik, your expedition vessel will proceed onwards into the North Atlantic to explore the unknown. The goal for the days spent exploring in Iceland, Jan Mayen and Svalbard is to offer activities which will allow everyone to explore off the ship as much as possible (weather permitting). Weather dependent, we will try to offer two activities per day, usually either a landing or a Zodiac cruise.
Typically, there will be a morning activity after breakfast and an afternoon activity after lunch. We always try our hardest to meet this expectation, but because weather in the Arctic can be extremely unpredictable, we ask everyone to be mindful of our remote location and thank everyone in advance for their flexibility. Activities we offer include landings, Zodiac cruises and ship cruises. Regulations in the Arctic limit the number of people ashore at any time, so we will usually aim to offer a Zodiac cruise while our first group of guests are ashore, and reverse this for the second group ashore to maximise exploration time. No matter the day’s planned activities, the onboard Expedition Team and Expedition Leader will work as hard as possible in conjunction with the Captain and Crew to maximize exploration opportunities.
A “typical” expedition day may look like this (subject to weather and sea conditions and sailing schedule):
- 06:45: Wake-up call
- 07:00-08:00: Breakfast
- 08:30-11:30: Morning activity - Landing and Zodiac Cruise
- 12:30-13:30: Lunch
- 14:30-17:30: Afternoon Activity - Landing and Zodiac Cruise
- 18:30-19:30: Evening Recap with Expedition Team
- 19:30: Dinner
Landings are a great opportunity to stretch your legs and set foot on shore to visit the wildlife colonies, historical sites, and dramatic landscapes of Iceland, Jan Mayen and Svalbard. Our experienced Expedition Team will be on shore to help you spot any wildlife, historical remains and geological and biological features, as well as keep our guests safe on shore from any potential hazards.
Remember that Svalbard holds a significant population of polar bears; while encounters are rare, these large wild animals can be dangerous. For that reason, when ashore in Svalbard our specially trained staff always prioritise the safety of our guests, and freedom to roam and hike in the area may be limited. We remind all visitors that this is for their own safety, and the safety of polar bears.
Some sites do not offer landing opportunities, but are locations where exploring on the water offers the best opportunities for sightseeing, wildlife and photography. These Zodiac cruise sites are often known for their concentration of ice, wildlife and even historical landmarks such as whaling stations, where our fleet of Zodiacs offer the best vantage point. This would be the only scenario you may have to wait on the ship (other than in adverse weather conditions), but we will always aim to offer an onboard program during this time, such as seminars given by our knowledgeable and experienced Lecturer team. Zodiac cruises are great for observing icebergs, glaciers, whales, and other marine wildlife. Your skilled driver will navigate around the area looking for wildlife and beautiful landscapes. By the end of the voyage, Zodiac cruises tend to become a firm favourite among our guests because of the vast diversity of scenery and marine life it is possible to experience.
In the event we encounter bad weather, are in a particularly spectacular location, or are viewing marine wildlife, often our purpose-built expedition vessels are the best viewing platform. The Captain and Expedition Leader will search for locations best accessed with the vessel to seek out the best wildlife and scenery. We encourage everyone to bundle up and either head onto the outer decks with the Expedition Team or relax in superlative comfort in our specially-designed lounges to experience the majesty of the Arctic from the best vantage point. During this time, our Expedition Team specialists will offer expert commentary related to the wildlife, history and conservation of the region, and more!
Other activities onboard include our ship Gym, where you can burn some calories on our fitness bicycles or treadmills; most of our ships even have other cardio machines and strength/lifting options. Most voyages throughout the season also offer kayaking (booked and paid onboard – weather permitting), and we will often aim to offer hiking excursions onshore when possible. Our new purpose-built ships have a Spa, in which guests can enjoy massages, facials, and other relaxing treatments (additional cost applies). Our Library is a great place to rest between outings, with expansive views and a wide selection of Arctic-related reading material. During your voyage you will also be able to enjoy our tea time in the late afternoon, or indulge in some retail therapy in our onboard Boutique, which sells personal necessities as well as outdoor equipment and specially-selected Arctic souvenirs.
In between our landings and activities we offer three hearty daily main meals. Albatros Expeditions always have allergy flexible options, healthy selections as well as a variety of vegetarian and vegan options.
Our hardworking galley crew deliver multiple Breakfast options, served in a buffet style along with a cooking station where eggs are made to order. At Lunch we are also met with a smorgasbord of mouthwatering choices. Safe to say you will have the energy for your next outing!
When it is Dinner time, you can choose to eat at the main restaurant or book a table at the Specialty Restaurant. Your evening meal is served a la carte, with fresh new options daily and always a selection of fixed items. There is always a vegetarian and pescetarian option available. Albatros Expeditions are known for our delicious menus and a variety of exquisite wine pairings.
Onboard you will also have the option to join Afternoon Tea with sweets, cakes or snacks served each afternoon. Albatros Expeditions have tea and coffee freely available all day throughout the vessel, while specialty coffee, alcoholic beverages and hand-crafted cocktails are available at the ship’s bars.
June in Iceland represents the start of the brief Arctic summer. Seabirds including puffins, gannets, guillemots and razorbills crowd the cliffs of the island, while the hillsides of this volacanic isle burst into colour. Saxifrages, Arctic poppies and lupins bloom under the long summer days, reaching towards the weak sunlight. While summer in Iceland is the mildest time of year, the waters around the island remain chilly - the weakening Gulf Stream reaching the island brings nutrients from further south, while the cold oxygenated waters flowing towards the island from the Arctic ocean combine to create an incredibly rich marine environment. By June, ceteceans including pilot whales, humpbacks and even orcas arrive in the waters around the island to feast on the summer bounty of food.
The isolated island of Jan Mayen has a climate heavily influenced by the North Atlantic ocean. This long narrow island lies at the junction between the cold East Greenland Current and the warm Gulf Stream. This mixing of nutrient-rich waters means the island is a haven for seabirds, ceteceans and other wildlife (although polar bears do not occur on Jan Mayen), however the collision of cold and warm waters often creates fog which can blanket the whole island. The remote mid-ocean location of the island meand that it also frequently experiences challenging swell conditions. Your Captain and Expedition Leader will evaluate conditions carefully upon arrival to Jan Mayen, and judge where on the island may offer the best conditions to explore.
By June, most of the fjords of Svalbard are navigable, and the snow has retreated to the hills – although the pack ice to the North can still block off access to the colder northeastern part of the archipelago. The tundra begins to come to life, as saxifrages, Arctic willows and heathers start to photosynthesise, greening the otherwise stark Arctic landscape. Expect to hear cacophonous bird calls during June, as the archipelago’s bird life rigorously defend their nests from predators. Arctic foxes (one of the Svalbard’s major predators) have now lost their snowy winter coat and molted into their sleek smoky summer pelt. By June, the female walrus of Svalbard have mostly given birth to their calves, which they nurture at sea - although they can sometimes be spotted on shore at some of the larger walrus colonies. Polar bears may be found throughout the islands, roaming the wilderness in their never-ending search for prey. On the hillsides, the stumpy Svalbard reindeer begin to give birth to their calves – a process which continues through July. While inclement conditions can occur in June, the rising temperatures and permanent sunshine offer excellent exploration opportunities as the weather becomes more stable.
In July, the brief Polar summer reaches its peak. The hillsides burst into colour as plants begin to flower – tiny jewels of purple and yellow adorning the tundra. July is the peak of animal activity on Svalbard, as the wildlife attempts to complete their breeding cycles and pack on enough fat to survive the brutal Arctic winter. Arctic fox cubs are emerging from their dens and beginning to explore the world, while their parents ruthlessly stalk prey to feed their young. On the sea cliffs, guillemot, fulmar and little auk chicks are emerging from their eggs, while goose, tern and eider chicks are hatching in their nests on the ground. The parent birds valiantly defend their nests from marauding foxes and even polar bears. This is a lean time of year for the King of the Arctic; polar bears stranded on Svalbard by the retreating ice live primarily off their fat reserves through the summer; the lucky ones survive by scavenging beached whale carcasses, while others will frequent bird colonies, hoping for unguarded eggs or chicks fallen from their nests, and some even resort to eating grass and berries.
Even in June and July, ice cover in the North Atlantic can be extensive, and can hamper access to certain areas at times. This is an unavoidable hazard of exploring the Arctic; and of course part of the adventure! Your knowledgeable Expedition Leader and Team will work hard to make alternate arrangements in the event of heavy ice being encountered, but we remind all travellers that ice is simply a part (one of the most spectacular parts!) of exploring the Arctic.
Arctic weather is famously unpredictable. Above the Arctic Circle, Jan Mayen and Svalbard experience midnight sun throughout summer, bringing warmer and calmer weather. Below the Circle in Iceland, summer days are still long and light. Extended periods of sunshine can warm up sheltered areas significantly, and these can feel warm (even hot) on calm windless days. However, maritime air currents can bring rapidly changing conditions throughout the North Atlantic. Fog, wind and rain can occur at any time, even on the warmest sunniest days, leading to rapid drops in temperature. We therefore remind our guests to be prepared for all weather conditions! We highly recommend to our guests to dress in layers (ideally in woollen or synthetic fibers) and wear a backpack so that layers can be adjusted as the weather dictates. Warm/waterproof layers, hats, waterproof gloves and scarves are recommended for all excursions off the vessel, even on the sunniest days – the weather can deteriorate rapidly at any time. Sun protection (hats, sunglasses, sunscreen and lip balm) is also essential – the low angle of the Arctic sun combined with cool ambient temperatures can cause sunburn to easily go unnoticed until it is too late!
Albatros Expedition strives to employ the very best Expedition Team in the whole industry. We travel in some of the planet’s most remote regions, where planning and on-location experience is key. Our routes and itineraries are subject to the prevailing sea, ice and wind conditions, which are closely monitored by the Bridge Team and Expedition Leader. Drawing on their vast experience, they find the best alternatives in the rare instances where our planned itinerary needs to be changed. Each cruise is a completely unique combination of locations, where the highlights can often be the totally unexpected. Most of our cruises provide the opportunity to spot a variety of unique wildlife, although this is subject to the whims of Mother Nature and can of course not be guaranteed. As you will no doubt experience, the joy from our Expedition Team when spotting different species on land or at sea is as genuine as your own.
This means that you as our guest are part of an adventure, a true expedition, where plans change, wildlife is encountered on their terms and your team consists of the very best experts within their fields. We strive to maintain a mix of specialists within relevant polar subjects including marine biology, ornithology, earth science, history and others. Albatros Expeditions boast a large number of Expedition Staff onboard, allowing us to maintain a high ratio of staff-to-guests at 1:8, amongst the highest ratios in expedition cruising. Some of our staff have decades of experience on ships or research stations, whilst others may be performing their first season. One thing they all have in common is the wish to make each and every journey a special and memorable experience for our guests. Knowledge, skill, and passion are the trademarks of all Albatros Expedition Staff.
To ensure the safety and quality of experience of our guests, please keep in mind that the itinerary and outdoor activities during each voyage are solely dependent on weather and sea conditions. Your safety is our highest priority. The route and shore landings will be determined by the Captain and Expedition Leader and communicated to guests through regularly scheduled briefings. Albatros Expeditions reserves the right to modify the landings and locations visited during a voyage based on local weather conditions and climate to ensure a safe and enjoyable experience for all our guests. Our voyages are expeditionary in nature, and thus changes to timings are commonplace due to the environment we operate in, as well as wildlife opportunities and locations.