Along the east coast of Spitsbergen
Along the east coast of Spitsbergen we enter a different world – a polar desert. If ice conditions allow we will pass south through the narrow Hinlopen Strait; flanked by creamy coloured slabs of rock that are rich in fossils, as we discover for ourselves when we go ashore.
We may visit Alkefjellet, where a series of one hundred metre high dolerite towers are home to millions of Brunnich’s guillemots – the penguins of the north – that occupy every available nook and cranny. Elsewhere we seek out eider ducks and geese, and hope to spot Arctic fox and the beautiful ivory gulls. As our Discovery Scenic Eclipse passes between Spitsbergen and the smaller islands of Barentsoya and Edgeoya, we cross the main polar bear migration route and the beautiful fertile plains of Sundeneset. The spongy ground is richly covered with bright green mosses, a variety of delicate and colourful flowers, particularly the yellow marsh (bog) saxifrage, various mushrooms, fungi, clear bubbling streams and small tarns.
Meals included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner