Day 17 & 18 Longyearbyen & Oslo
Disembarkation morning is normally a sad affair, leaving your temporary home packed with wonderful experiences but on this occasion, it was a pleasure to be leaving. Although MV “Expedition” was very comfortable and the ship’s hotel crew were exemplary, the elements that should have given a wonderful experience, the expedition crew and the itinerary were frustratingly well below what I would normally expect on a ‘wildlife expedition cruise’. Sadly, we missed out on so many of Svalbard’s renowned features and wildlife; the floristically rich tundra and plants, the historical artifacts and of course the birds. No west coast visits, no Moffin or Lagøya islands, only half a day spent in pack-ice and no bearded seals resting, sleeping, dreaming bearded seals’ dreams.
Foregoing the very hallmark of the high Arctic, its huge populations of a very limited number of species, that are most evident on the perpendicular, pink, towering cliffs of the Hinlopen Straits, for the sake of boasting a completed full circumnavigation of the archipelago and seeing limited wildlife!!!
After an overnight in Oslo we boarded our Edinburgh bound flight, collected the car and the dog before travelling home very disappointed with our experience on a G-Adventures ‘wildlife’ cruise. Despite all the negatives, we hope you enjoyed sharing our Polar Journals and should you ever consider a wildlife cruise to the Arctic in future be sure to check out Naturetrek.co.uk. Plan your trip to co-inside with Naturetrek’s exclusive charter, every alternate year, and visit the very best wildlife sites that deliver an experience second to none. Coffers permitting we may see you there!