The Scottish Isles – Whisky and Wildlife from the Hebrides to the Shetlands (Northbound)

The Scottish Isles – Whisky and Wildlife from the Hebrides to the Shetlands (Northbound)

The Scottish Isles – Whisky and Wildlife from the Hebrides to the Shetlands (Northbound)

The Scottish Isles – Whisky and Wildlife from the Hebrides to the Shetlands (Northbound)

Travel information 13 days MS Spitsbergen
14 May 2023
Price from
4658 €
Breakfast, lunch and dinner included

Discover the rugged and magnificent isles of Scotland as we sail from Glasgow to Bergen, sampling unique malts and viewing some amazing wildlife and birds along the way.

Diverse destinations & distinctive drams

From Glasgow we head over to industrious Belfast and the Isle of Man before turning north to the Inner Hebrides and ‘whisky island’ Islay, with its nine distilleries. We’ll set foot on mystical Iona with its famous Abbey, and wildlife lovers will be amazed at the rich birdlife on the tiny nearby Treshnish Isles

Our next planned destination – Loch Scavaig on the Isle of Skye – is said to be the most evocative Highland scene you can imagine. Peaceful Canna awaits, with its monuments and its enchanting scenery before we journey to the Outer Hebrides.

Wild islands & wonderful wildlife

You’ll love remote St Kilda, is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, deserted by humans but rewilded by an astonishing number of birds. On Lewis & Harris, you’ll discover pristine beaches, tweed workshops and the mysterious Callanish stone circle.

The next grouping on our expedition voyage is the Orkneys, where we’ll find whisky in Kirkwall, which traces its roots back to the Vikings. Finally, we explore the remote Shetland Islands, where archaeological treasures await on lonely Fair Isle, before crossing over to beautiful Bergen in Norway where we end our journey.

The Scottish Isles – Whisky and Wildlife from the Hebrides to the Shetlands (Northbound) The Scottish Isles – Whisky and Wildlife from the Hebrides to the Shetlands (Northbound)
  • Day 1
    Glasgow (Greenock), Scotland

    Setting sail from the stylish city of culture

    14 May 2023
    Estimated time of departure is 10:00 PM

    Our expedition to the isles of Scotland and beyond begins in Glasgow. If you have time before the day of embarkation, it’s definitely worth getting to know this elegant city. Set against a backdrop of splendid Victorian architecture, Glasgow has reinvented itself as a stylish and exciting place, full of museums, galleries, and lively spots to eat, drink and shop. Add an extra night and get to know  the proud city of Edinburgh, uniting history and beauty. See the architectural gems with the magnificent 12th-century cathedral and revolutionary Art Nouveau buildings in Glasgow during our optional Pre-Programme.  

    Your comfortable expedition ship MS Spitsbergen will be ready and waiting for you. Once you board the ship and check in, you’ll receive your complimentary wind and water-resistant expedition jacket which may come in handy with the unpredictable weather we can expect to encounter along the way. There’ll be time to settle into your cabin and explore a bit of the ship before attending a mandatory pre-departure safety drill.

    You’ll be greeted by your friendly Expedition Team. They’ll prepare you for the exciting days ahead, but their first priority will be to take you through important health and safety principles to ensure you and your fellow explorers are always safe and well throughout the cruise.

    And with that, we’ll be away! MS Spitsbergen will set sail from Glasgow, heading first towards the Irish Sea as we prepare to visit Northern Ireland and the Isle of Man before setting a course for the beautiful Scottish isles.

    Stretch your legs out on deck and get to know the different areas of the ship, which is your new home-from-home for the next 13 days. Enjoy your first dinner aboard in one of the ship’s excellent restaurants, and look forward to many more delicious meals to come. Raise your glass and join the Captain and crew as they toast to an enjoyable expedition together.

    Please note, as this is an expedition cruise, the order of stops may change due to local circumstances.

    Day 1
    Glasgow (Greenock), Scotland

    Setting sail from the stylish city of culture

  • Day 2
    Belfast, Northern Ireland

    Charming Industrial Capital

    15 May 2023

    A city of industry and elegance, Northern Ireland’s capital, Belfast, is famously the birthplace of the Titanic. Fittingly, an entire Titanic Quarter has been dedicated to this unfortunate ship and it’s an experience not to be missed. You can walk along the Maritime Mile, a waterfront trail that will give you a sense of Belfast’s proud seafaring history.

    Elegant Victorian architecture abounds in the city. Enjoy a peaceful stroll around the cobbled streets of the Cathedral Quarter. Formerly associated with trade and warehouses, the area has transformed into a young and fashionable neighbourhood. In the heart of the quarter sits St Anne’s Cathedral. Pop inside to view its beautiful interior and wonderful mosaics.

    Head south through the city centre to Donegall Square, where you can take a tour of City Hall, a historical landmark with an impressive collection of stained-glass windows. Close by is the beautiful façade of the majestic Grand Opera House, designed by Frank Matcham. Foodies will love the tasty treats at the award-winning St George’s Market, where you can sample the local gin and whisky and pick up some handicrafts.

    If you’re a history buff, the Ulster Museum is well worth a visit, and the Botanic Gardens right next door are a beautiful example of Victorian-era glasshouses, filled with exotic plant species. Take a stroll around the grounds of Queen’s University Belfast in the leafy Queen’s Quarter and then pootle around the neighbourhood shops, cafés and bars.

    On the outskirts of the city, you can visit the delightful Belfast Castle – combine a visit with a walk up Cave Hill for fantastic views over the city and the sea.

    • Included Castle Espie Wetlands Centre
    Day 2
    Belfast, Northern Ireland

    Charming Industrial Capital

  • Day 3
    Peel, Isle of Man

    Celts, castles and kippers

    16 May 2023

    Approaching Peel, on the Isle of Man, you’ll immediately notice the imposing ruins of Peel Castle looming over the port. This mighty fortress gives you a taste of what you’ll experience on this enigmatic island kingdom, which is situated squarely between England, Ireland, Scotland and Wales. The Manx people are proud of their independent status, and you will see the three-legged triskelion wherever you go.

    A seaside town, the pretty port of Peel was the 14th century capital of the island and seat of the King of Mann. Winding lanes of merchants’ houses bear witness to the industry of yesteryear, when fishing schooners were built here and traded from Ireland to Shetland.

    Visit Peel Castle – built by Viking king Magnus Barefoot, and dated from the 11th century – and feel history beneath your feet. There are many ruined buildings within the huge walls, as well as the restored 13th century cathedral of St German. Head down into the crypt below, but keep your eyes open for Moddey Dhoo, a ghostly dog said to haunt the castle!

    Several museums in town display vintage bikes and cars – a connection to the more modern high-speed racing that occurs on the island. And did you know the Isle of Man is famous for its distinctive split kippers (smoked herrings)? You can try them down at The Kipper House traditional smokehouse near the harbour.

    Another must-see museum is the House of Manannan – a homage to the mythical sea god Manannán mac Lir for whom the island is named – and an exhibition of the Man’s Celtic, Viking and maritime past. Here, you’ll see the replica Viking longboat, Odin’s Raven – which was sailed here from Norway – and visit a traditional Celtic roundhouse. The experience is a feast of sights, sounds and even smells!

    • Included Isle of Man Beach Cleaning
    Day 3
    Peel, Isle of Man

    Celts, castles and kippers

  • Day 4
    Islay, Scotland

    Land of Scottish Whisky

    17 May 2023

    Fire up your spirit of discovery and step onto an island famed for its whisky, wildlife and woolly garments.

    Islay isn’t called ‘whisky island’ for nothing. There are nine working distilleries here, and you’ll find their peaty single malts sold around the world. One of the larger isles, there’s 130 miles of coastline, and numerous quiet, sandy beaches.

    History abounds on Islay, with ancient monoliths and a stone circle showing the island was inhabited back in Neolithic times. Later Islay came to be known as the Lordship of the Isles, and you can explore the enigmatic settlement at Finlaggan, which remains the most important archaeological site on the island, while a number of Celtic crosses can be found dotted around.

    Islay is a wildlife paradise, with over 200 species of birds including oystercatchers, gannets, terns, hags and cormorants, as well as buzzards, Hen Harriers and even Golden Eagles. From the beaches, dolphins and basking sharks are sometimes spotted, and you might even see otters if you are patient.

    Delve into the delights of the charming little town of Bowmore where there are shops, an interesting round church, plus several cosy pubs and restaurants. It’s probably the only place in the world you can grab a Hebridean pizza – or ‘peat-za’ – topped with crab and lobster.

    Arts and crafts abound in Bowmore, and you can visit potters, quilters and artists in their workshops. Visit Islay Woollen Mill, near Bridgend, which made tartan clothes for Mel Gibson in Braveheart, as well as Liam Neeson’s kilt in Rob Roy.

    Of course, no trip to Islay would be complete without a visit to at least one of its famous distilleries. Bruichladdich, Laphroaig, Bunnahabhain, Ardbeg and Bowmore are among the best known.

    • Included Islay Coastal Walk 
    Day 4
    Islay, Scotland

    Land of Scottish Whisky

  • Day 5
    Oban, Scotland

    Expect the unexpected

    18 May 2023

    The great thing about being aboard an expedition ship with a team of enthusiastic experts is that we don’t have to stick to a rigid schedule and can instead make the most of local opportunities.

    We could, for example, head over to Oban. Sometimes called the ‘Gateway to the Isles’ this small town is a busy fishing port and you can often see otters, dolphins and seals in the harbour. A 20-minute walk from town goes past beaches and through woodland to the castle Dunollie, ancient seat of the Clan Chiefs. Fancy a wee dram? The tiny Oban Distillery is one of the oldest in Scotland.

    Perhaps local conditions will lead us to a different destination, in which case you could find yourself heading ashore on an expedition boat to explore an off-the-beaten-track area that few others ever visit. Loch Sunart, for example, is a beautiful seawater loch. As a Marine Protected Area, the clear waters shelter a rich ecosystem and are a stronghold for otters. It’s also a great place for spotting dolphins and porpoises.

    Tobermory, on the Isle of Mull, is another option for us to explore. This charming fishing port is instantly recognisable by the brightly coloured Georgian houses that line the waterfront. The small town is packed with cafés, restaurants and craft stores, and there’s also a whisky distillery here.

    In fact, there are so many beautiful places for you to explore in this sublime and untamed region. Wherever we go today you can rest assured that our Expedition Team, who know western Scotland so well, can be trusted to seek out the best possible experience. After all, on a Hurtigruten Expedition Voyage you can expect the unexpected – that’s what makes our cruises so special!

    • Included Oban Walking Tour
    Day 5
    Oban, Scotland

    Expect the unexpected

  • Day 6
    Isle of Iona & Treshnish Isles, Scotland

    Pilgrims and Puffins

    19 May 2023

    Famed for its mystical Christian associations, Iona is a peaceful little island off the coast of Mull in the Inner Hebrides. The restored Abbey remains a place of pilgrimage and peace, but there’s much more to see here including picturesque beaches, wonderful wildlife and the beautiful St Columba’s Bay.

    Iona has been a centre for Christian worship since the sixth century, but the Abbey was sacked several times by Vikings between 795 and 825. Today you can explore this sacred site, including the restored church. There’s said to be 48 early Scottish kings buried in the graveyard, as well as Irish and Norwegian ones – see if you can find them!

    There’s a popular hike uphill to Dun I (pronounced Dun Eee) from the Abbey. You’ll be at Iona’s highest point and will be able to see St Columba’s Bay and the Treshnish Isles. While you’re there, look out for ‘Natural Well’ aka the ‘Well of Eternal Youth’ and splash your face with its allegedly miraculous waters. It’s in a cleft between two rocks as you walk downhill facing North.

    We’ll explore the remote beauty of the Treshnish Isles next, a group of distinctive skerries home to a wealth of wildlife, including Atlantic Puffins, colonies of Black-legged Kittiwakes, Razorbills, and Common Guillemots, as well as Atlantic grey seals. Did you know that puffins can live 30 years or more?

    Fingal’s Cave, immortalised in music by Mendelssohn’s Hebrides Overture, is on the cave-riddled island of Staffa and is noted for its amazing natural acoustics. The basalt columns within are a northern extension of the Giant’s Causeway in Northern Ireland. On a calm, clear day, it might even be possible to land and see the colour of the waters inside the cave, but its rising columns can also be viewed from the sea.

    • Included Iona Abbey Free Flow
    Day 6
    Isle of Iona & Treshnish Isles, Scotland

    Pilgrims and Puffins

  • Day 7
    Loch Scavaig and Isle of Canna, Scotland

    Lost worlds and ancient island artefacts

    20 May 2023

    Beneath the dramatic peaks of the Cuillin Mountains, Loch Scavaig on the Isle of Skye leads to one of the most beautiful and dramatic freshwater bodies in Scotland – Loch Coruisk. Painted by Turner and a popular destination for the Victorians, this is a powerful and romantic landscape that will get your heart racing.

    You’ll need your walking boots on to allow for the sometimes-soggy conditions, but there are several great walks that run alongside the loch. The name Coruisk means ‘Cauldron of Water’ and you might feel like you’re in an epic fantasy film as you set foot upon its shores. Surrounded on three sides by craggy peaks, there’s a lost world feel here, and the poet Lord Tennyson described it as “the wildest scene in the Highlands.”

    After visiting Loch Coruisk, we head over to the peaceful island of Canna, the westernmost island in the Inner Hebrides. Only 4.3 miles long and 1 mile wide, Canna is the perfect place to get in touch with nature.

    For the history buffs, look out for prehistoric fortifications and abandoned settlements, and challenge yourself to find the carved Celtic cross and the ‘King of Norway’s grave’. But be sure not to miss Canna House, with its whisky collection retrieved from a 1940s shipwreck, and relax in its lovely walled gardens.

    Serene and peaceful, this island haven promises enchanting scenery and wonderful wildlife. Canna's coastline supports thousands of pairs of breeding seabirds, so bring your binoculars and get ready to explore this rocky yet sublime location.

    From puffins to muffins, enjoy a cuppa and a cake at the local café, and browse handmade crafts made by the community in the island shop only a short walk from the pier, before returning to the ship for the evening meal.

    • Included Canna Nature Landing
    • Included Loch Scavaig Landing and Hike
    Day 7
    Loch Scavaig and Isle of Canna, Scotland

    Lost worlds and ancient island artefacts

  • Day 8
    St. Kilda, Hirta Island, Scotland

    Reclaimed by Nature

    21 May 2023

    There’s only one way to describe tiny, rocky St Kilda: wild. As such, our visit to this storm-tossed archipelago, with its breathtaking sea cliffs and boiling seas is totally weather-dependent.

    As a UNESCO double World Heritage Site and the jewel in the crown of the National Trust for Scotland, visiting St Kilda is an unforgettable experience. The outlying stacks and islands, which are the remains of a volcanic crater, provide ledges for thousands of nesting seabirds. What’s more, minke whales are sometimes seen in the swirling waters that surround the rocky outcrops.

    Once home to Britain’s most remote island community, in 1930, after 4,000 years of continuous habitation, the people living on St Kilda’s Hirta Island were evacuated at their own request. The tiny museum that remains is a record of how hard life was on this exposed outcrop.

    However, setting foot on St Kilda you’ll soon see the island is far from deserted – it’s home to a multitude of seabirds, including over 60,000 pairs of Northern Gannets – the second largest gannet colony in the world! There’s a good chance you’ll spot many other seabirds as well, including Atlantic Puffins, Northern Fulmars, Common Guillemots, and Black-legged Kittiwakes – you’ll soon see there’s a reason St. Kilda is considered one of the most important seabird colonies in Europe.

    Birdlife aside, you might spot some other island inhabitants if you look. An ancient breed of sheep – the Soay sheep – lives wild here, as do a number of other rare species including the St Kilda mouse and the St Kilda Wren. See if you can find any of them!

    Explore the abandoned village and see the distinctive ‘cleits’ – circular stone buildings used to store peat, eggs and smoked puffins, before heading back to MS Spitsbergen and its rather nicer dining options.

    • Included St Kilda Nature Landing
    Day 8
    St. Kilda, Hirta Island, Scotland

    Reclaimed by Nature

  • Day 9
    Stornoway, Lewis & Harris, Scotland

    Capital of the Outer Hebrides

    22 May 2023

    Stornoway is the capital of the Isle of Lewis & Harris, an island famed for pristine beaches, Neolithic sites and tweed workshops. Be prepared to step back in time as you investigate ancient ruins and gaze in wonder at the mysterious Callanish standing stones, as well as exploring the bustling waterfront and streets of the island’s main town.

    Originally a Viking settlement, Stornoway is the main town on Lewis & Harris – a single island with two names denoting the north and south parts. It’s the largest and most northerly island in the Outer Hebrides, aka the Western Isles. Check out Lews Castle, an impressive Gothic-revival style which overlooks Stornoway harbour. As well as visiting its museum, you can wander round the grounds and get unbeatable views of the inky blue seas. Or why not drop in for a wee dram in the castle’s very own whisky bar.

    Harris is famed for its woollen tweed fabric, and you’ll see jackets, trousers and hats for sale in shops all over the island – perfect for gifts or mementoes. After visiting shops, museums and old castles, blow the cobwebs off with a walk.

    Of course, a visit to Lewis & Harris wouldn’t be complete without seeing the Callanish standing stones (Calanais in Gaelic), a magical ring of monoliths whose origins are shrouded in mystery. Another atmospheric site is the Blackhouse at Arnol, a completely restored thatched traditional dwelling which provides a fascinating glimpse into the past.

    If you fancy a walk, there are many routes to pick from, with Lewis being the less hilly part. As you explore the island, look out for red deer, eagles, otters, gannets and butterflies – the wild side of this peaceful island attracts nature lovers from around the world.

    • Included Lews Castle Walk
    Day 9
    Stornoway, Lewis & Harris, Scotland

    Capital of the Outer Hebrides

  • Day 10
    Kirkwall, Orkney

    Whisky galore

    23 May 2023

    Fresh, clean air, friendly people, cosy little shops and pubs – welcome to Kirkwall, Orkney’s largest town. It’s an old Norse settlement that can trace its roots back to the Vikings, and there’s plenty here so get ready to explore.

    First off you might like to take a wander around town and get your bearings. Kirkwall may be the biggest town of all the Scottish islands, but it’s still petite and easily traversed. For such a small place the cathedral is quite grand, and you can’t miss it. Made from the local distinctive red sandstone, St Magnus Cathedral was built in the 12th century and is named after a local pacifist, who is entombed in one of the interior pillars.

    Next, head over to the adjacent Earl’s Palace, a ruined Renaissance-style palace that’s both impressive and atmospheric. If you’re in the mood for a coffee and some cake, you’ll find yourself right beside Reel, a café/music shop crossover that serves hot drinks, bites and local ales.

    Speaking of alcohol, there are three distilleries here in Kirkwall, and only two of them make whisky. The Highland Park Distillery is perched on the southern edge of town and claims Viking descendance. The second, Scapa Distillery, is just outside town to the south and overlooks Scapa Flow. The third distillery makes … gin. Check out the Kirkjuvagr Orkney Gin distillery, probably the only place you’ll ever find Viking gin!

    Of course, if you’d rather just sample a few tipples without moving around too much, head over to the lovely Royal Cask inside the Orkney Hotel, where they have over 1,000 whiskies behind the stone bar. But remember to leave some time to visit the Orkney Museum, which tells the fascinating saga of Orkney from the Stone Age to the present day.

    • Included Kirkwall on Foot
    Day 10
    Kirkwall, Orkney

    Whisky galore

  • Day 11
    Fair Isle, Shetland Islands, Scotland

    A Scenic Stop for Birds

    24 May 2023

    Today you’ll set foot on Britain’s most remote island. Lonely, wind-blown Fair Isle lies some 24 miles to the south of the main Shetland group, and it’s one of the smaller inhabited Scottish islands. There’s a mere 65 people making up the community here, and a permanent electricity supply was only installed in 2018.

    Fair Isle is home to 27 species of bird, making the little island a magnet for birders and wildlife photographers from afar. With its high red-sandstone cliffs and gently rolling green fields and moors it’s a vital stop for migrating seabirds and has had a permanent observatory since 1948. Alas, it was tragically destroyed by a fire in 2019, but it’s currently being rebuilt and is seeking supporters.

    Put your walking boots on and head out on some of the fantastic cliff-top routes, or just follow the road up to North Haven and North Lighthouse. The views across the sea are incredible – make sure you keep an eye out for the cheeky-looking Atlantic Puffins who live in grassy burrows atop the cliffs.

    The island museum tells the story of the people who have made Fair Isle their home, and if you’re keen on crafts there’s a couple of places where you can buy knitwear, textiles and other products direct from the makers, supporting the local community. There’s also a tiny art gallery and a church.

    Take your time here and really get a feel for how it must be to live on this happy little island before we head back to the ship.

    • Included Fair Isle Island Visit
    Day 11
    Fair Isle, Shetland Islands, Scotland

    A Scenic Stop for Birds

  • Day 12
    Lerwick, Shetland Islands, Scotland

    At the Centre of Scotland’s Shetland Islands

    25 May 2023

    Welcome to Shetland Mainland. At 106 miles from the coast of Great Britain, these are Scotland’s most northerly inhabited isles. Today we’ll be alongside the handsome town of Lerwick, which is also the islands’ capital. Founded in the 17th century as a fishing port, today Lerwick is a friendly, bustling town with handsome Victorian architecture set amidst some stunning scenery.

    Setting out into Lerwick on foot, you’ll find a compact and hilly town with only a single shopping street - Commercial Street. This might seem odd for a ‘capital’, but everything about Shetland is like Scotland in miniature, and only around 7,000 people live here. Explore the narrow pedestrian lanes leading off it you’ll discover dinky little shops selling everything from Shetland whiskies and boiled sweets, to woollen sweaters and locally made fudge.

    The old waterfront is still active with visiting yachts and working fishing boats, and down here you’ll also find the Shetland Museum. Inside there’s a fascinating overview of the archaeological richness of the islands, including artefacts and a model of the famous Jarlshof prehistoric complex in the south of the island.

    Take a stroll over to Fort Charlotte, a five-side fort built during the Anglo-Dutch war of 1652. Not far away is the magisterial town hall, which looms over much of Lerwick and could almost be mistaken for a castle. Inside, it looks just as splendid, with some amazing stained-glass windows that tell the tale of Shetland.

    The wider island boasts some of Shetland's most attractive scenery and an extraordinary concentration of archaeological sites, including two remarkable Iron Age villages only a short distance from Lerwick. Also, well worth a visit is the Croft House Museum, which gives you a taste of how tough life was on these isles for crofters (smallholders) not too long ago.

    • Included Lerwick Walking Tour with Fort Charlotte
    Day 12
    Lerwick, Shetland Islands, Scotland

    At the Centre of Scotland’s Shetland Islands

  • Day 13
    Bergen, Norway

    City of Seven Mountains

    26 May 2023
    Estimated time of arrival is 8:00 AM

    Today we bid farewell to one another as our Scottish Isles Whisky and Wildlife discovery voyage concludes in Bergen. After disembarking MS Spitsbergen, it’s definitely worth spending some time exploring this Norwegian coastal gem.

    If you have more time available we recommend you booking our optional Post-Programme. Drive along the German pier “Bryggen” a World Heritage Site and continue through the city and suburbs of Bergen to Troldhaugen – former home of Edvard Grieg. Continue the  tour with a visit of the unique Fantoft stave church and spend the night in a nice hotel. 

    Founded in 1070 CE, Bergen was Norway’s capital for many years, its location ideally placing it as the gateway port for Hanseatic trade with the rest of Europe. The nation’s second largest city has retained much of its local character, history and charm. 

    A visit to Bergen is not complete without setting foot in the historic Bryggen district, a UNESCO World Heritage Site with distinctive wooden wharves. You’ll find the area full of independent boutiques selling artisanal handicrafts. Opposite Bryggen is Bergen’s famous fish market, where sumptuous fresh seafood is cooked right in front of you.

    We’re sure you will have had an amazing time on your Scottish island adventure aboard the MS Spitsbergen. What better way to round off your trip than taking the funicular up to Mount Fløyen for spectacular views of the acclaimed seven mountains, the port and the sea beyond!

    Day 13
    Bergen, Norway

    City of Seven Mountains



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Current offers on this cruise:

  • Free rebooking

    Our booking policy ensures peace of mind when you book your next adventure.
    The benefits of the policy apply to any new bookings made between 16 February 2022 and 30 June 2022, for expedition cruises departing on or before 31 December 2022.
    See Special Offer

What's included

Included in your voyage

Expedition Cruise

  • Expedition cruise in a cabin of your choice
  • Breakfast, lunch and dinner including beverages (house beer and wine, sodas, and mineral water) in restaurant Aune
  • Complimentary tea and coffee
  • Complimentary Wi-Fi on board. Be aware that we sail in remote areas with very limited connection. Streaming is not supported.
  • Complimentary reusable water bottle to use at water refill stations on board
  • English-speaking Expedition Team who organise and accompany activities on board and ashore
  • Range of included activities

Onboard Activities

  • Experts on the Expedition Team deliver in-depth lectures on a variety of topics
  • Use of the ship’s Science Center which has an extensive library and advanced biological and geological microscopes
  • Citizen Science programme allows guests to assist with live scientific research
  • Professional onboard photographer gives top tips and tricks for the best landscape and wildlife photos
  • Use of the ship’s hot tubs, panoramic sauna and indoor gym
  • Informal gatherings with the crew such as daily recaps and preparation for the day to come

Landing Activities

  • Escorted landings with small expedition boats
  • Loan of boots, trekking poles, and all equipment for activities
  • Complimentary wind and water-resistant expedition jacket
  • Expedition Photographers help with your camera settings

Not included in your voyage

  • International flights
  • Travel insurance
  • Luggage handling
  • Optional shore excursions with our local partners


  • All planned activities are subject to weather and ice conditions
  • Excursions and activities are subject to change
  • Please make sure you meet all entry and boarding requirements
  • No gratuities expected
Longyearbyen, Svalbard - MS Spitsbergen
Photo: Genna Roland
MS spitsbergen
A large bed in a room
Your ship

MS Spitsbergen

Year built 2009
Year of refurbishment 2016
Shipyard Estaleiro Navais de Viana do Castelo (POR)
Passenger capacity 180
Beds 243
Car capacity 0
Gross tonnage 7,344
Length 100.54m
Beam 18m
Speed 14.5 knots
Longyearbyen, Svalbard - MS Spitsbergen
Photo: Genna Roland

MS Spitsbergen will take you on a voyage beyond the ordinary. She cruises along the Norwegian coast from September to May, and becomes part of our global Expedition sailings during the rest of the year.

Read more about MS Spitsbergen

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Photo: Stefan Dall / Hurtigruten
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