Very few have ventured to the northernmost part of Norway, the Arctic islands of Svalbard. Those who have, can all agree on one thing: it is an extreme place, both in climate and remoteness. It is a part of the world where the nature has never been tamed. It is also a wonderful destination for travellers seeking to experience the beauty of the North – and it doesn’t have to be hard or primitive. During the last two decades, tourism has become more and more prominent on Svalbard. Now, local suppliers can offer tourists fantastic wilderness experiences together with the comfort of modern accomodations. One such supplier, is the Basecamp Spitsbergen.
Basecamp Spitsbergen offers short trips to multiple day excursions by foot, ski, sled and snowmobile. They have several Basecamps in and around Longyearbyen, the capital of Svalbard. Perhaps the most memorable of these is the 3 days dog sled tour to the Basecamp Ship in The Ice. The trip starts with a briefing at Basecamp Trapper’s Hotel in the heart of Longyearbyen.
The decor and interior is modelled on the cabins made and used by the whale hunters and trappers of old, but still has modern facilities expected from a hotel. Here you can enjoy the rustic atmosphere, with driftwood panels and icebear pelts, while sleeping in a clean and warm bed.
After the morning briefing, you are transported to the dog kennel at Basecamp Trapper’s Station, where 90 happy Huskies greet you, eager to take you on an adventure…
And you better be ready for it, as you will learn how to handle them and steer the sled yourself! It might be a bit scary at first, but soon you will get used to it. From then on, it’s a three days fairy tale of wide open landscapes and breathtaking scenery. Lunch is served in the field, with the endless expanse of white as your tablecloth. After a full day of crossing snowy plains and valleys, you arrive at the Basecamp Ship in The Ice. It looks just like you expect it to. Behold, the World’s only ice-bound hotel ship:
After taking care of the dogs and patting them good night, you ease in for a tasty three course dinner onboard the 120 foot long Dutch schooner, Noorderlicht. Inside, you will be surprised to find 10 well-equipped cabins, hot water, electicity, shower and toilet. Exploring further, you find two lounges, and a fully functioning bar. You sit down with a nice drink, but as soon as you relax you realize how tired you are. After all, it’s been a long day, and the constant amazement has worn you out. It’s time for bed. As you tuck in for the night, you smile, because tomorrow the adventure will continue again. But not before you’ve enjoyed a solid breakfast, with steaming hot coffee and freshly baked bread!
The above trip and many more can be arranged through our office in Oslo. Feel free to contact us if you wish to book or have an inquiry!
Photos courtesy of Basecamp Spitsbergen