Svalbard– a Norwegian province in the Arctic, covering the Svalbard archipelago together with several islands not included in the archipelago within the limits of 71 ° – 81 ° N and 10 ° – 35 ° E, 800 km north of Norway and 1100 km from the North Pole.
A place on Earth that you must return to – maybe in the summer? Hiking in the surrounding mountains… A few days’ cruise… – that’s how I felt when I stood in winter boots for the first time on the Svalbard archipelago in Spitsbergen…
And so it happened … And not a few-day cruise, but two weeks spent on a yacht – not luxurious, not from posters about sea cruises, where there is a swimming pool, showers, served meals and a “guardian” who will help with everything. Yachts, where privacy is a foreign concept, where there are watches, and the walk is 5 steps to the bow and 5 to the stern.
But can you dream of anything else to be able to feel free and spend time in a place you fell in love with?
Sure you can. However, the time spent among amazing people, glaciers, views and walruses strengthened me in this choice. Although before settling in the yacht my stomach hurt, my legs trembled, and various thoughts came to mind while sitting on the plane – it was supposed to be my first time on a boat (not counting a fishing boat) and in such a place!
Where did the idea for a cruise around Svalbard come from? I sat, read, looked for the best way to get to know this magical place. There are many archipelago cruises, but the prices are staggering, especially with foreign crews and large ships. And so I came across a Polish yacht and a captain who sails along Norway most of the year and organizes a cruise around Spitsbergen this summer. There was a place. I did not hesitate – only later dark thoughts came – me alone, without experience on the boat … It’s hard, you only live once. In addition, as the only female among the crew…
The cruise started in Longyearbyen and ended there. Our goal was to see as much as possible and cross 80°N, we managed, although it was raining with snow and it was +1°C.
For me, one of the most beautiful places on earth, where you can feel different and find yourself.
The temperature outside fluctuated with a few exceptions between +4°C and +10°C, below deck a few degrees more. Of course, the polar day, the sun overhead 24 hours a day.
Date: June 26-July 12, 2015.