A man exploring the Gruve 3 Mine on a local tour in Longyearbyen

Visit a Coal Mine of the Past

Take an immersive tour of a 20th-century coal mine in Longyearbyen and learn more about the fascinating heritage of this mining town.

  • Get an insight into Longyearbyen’s history
  • Explore old mining tunnels excavated in the 1970s and learn about age-old mining techniques
  • Take a photo outside Svalbard’s famous Global Seed Vault
  • Season

    Summer (1 May - 30 Sep)

  • Difficulty level

    Level 2: Moderate - some mobility needed

  • Duration

    3 hours

  • Min. passengers

    10

  • Max. passengers

    24

  • Booking code

    HRI-LYR8C

  • From

    174 €

Step back in time and uncover the intriguing history of Longyearbyen, a town whose very existence can be traced back to the adventurous spirit of American pioneer, John Munro Longyear. In the early 1900s, his journey to Svalbard paved the way for the opening of Gruve 1 (Mine 1), a pivotal chapter in the Longyearbyen’s history. Our tour visits Gruve 3 (Mine 3), a 10-minute bus transfer from the ship.  

Inside, you’ll step into a world frozen in time, where the machinery and equipment left behind when production ceased offers a fascinating glimpse into the region’s mining history. You can crawl through tunnels at the same low height that miners once endured, before venturing into the main tunnel. Excavated in the 1970s, it is a striking reminder of the industry’s evolution over the years.  

As you explore, you’ll learn more about the old-fashioned techniques that were once used to extract coal from these depths, a testament to the resilience of the miners who toiled here. Grab a piece of coal on your way out and bring home a locally produced souvenir.   

Before returning to the ship, you’ll have the opportunity to take a photo outside the Global Seed Vault, an iconic Svalbard landmark.

Practical information 

  • Languages: English and Norwegian. 
  • Clothing: A helmet, headlamp, and overalls are provided. 
  • Wheelchair accessible: No.  
  • Not suitable for those with claustrophobia. 
  • Age limit: 12 years.