|Print E-Mail | Arctic | Spitsbergen | Greenland | Norway | Iceland|
|Northern Lights (Aurora Borealis) Holidays|
Tel 0844 412 0848
Int'l +44 1428 620012
Aqua-Firma provides opportunities to see the Northern Lights as part of some highly inspiring Arctic wilderness and wildlife adventures.
Between September and December, Aqua-Firma operates Arctic Sailing Voyages to Spitsbergen and Norway's Lofoten Islands. These are onboard two stunning classic sailing ships: one a two masted schooner and another onboard a three masted barquentine.
In September, our Wildlife and Marine Life North Spitsbergen Sailing Voyage takes us along the western coast to the northern tip of the island. At this time of the year, night and day cycles return and since we are within about 11 degrees of the North Pole, we have some reasonable chances of seeing the Aurora borealis. Spitsbergen is the land of the polar bear so we can hope for good sightings of these as well as walruses, Arctic fox, resident birdlife and reindeer. September is also a good time to see whales in Spitsbergen, including the ghostly white beluga.
Later in September and into October, sea ice starts to restrict access to the North of Spitsbergen so we operate 7 day South Spitsbergen Sailing Voyages to the stunning fjords and glacier coastline of places like Hornsund. As the nights grow longer, opportunities to see the Northern Lights increase. We can still hope to see polar bears, whales and other wildlife, and after about 20th October we can offer the addition of dog sledding for those interested to stay longer land based. This has to be on a subject to snow basis, because it is very difficult to predict when snow will start to arrive.
In November and into early December our Lofoten Islands Voyages take our sailing schooner to Norway's stunning Arctic island archipelago. Here a chain of mountains rises steeply from the sea in an ever decreasing size of islands as we head west out into open sea. Nights are longer with good chances for Northern Lights sightings. The great advantage about being on a boat in the Arctic wilderness is that we can anchor away from any artificial sources of light. By day we explore some dramatic snowy mountain and fjord scenery, with hill trekking too for those who want, to see nesting sea eagles and ancient rock paintings.
High Arctic Dog Sledding, Snowmobiles and Ship Locked in the Ice
The schooner returns to Spitsbergen in December and takes up position in a beautiful fjord called Tempelfjord. As the winter freeze covers thousands of square miles of the Arctic with sea ice, this ice strengthened ship becomes locked in ice many miles from the nearest liquid sea surface. This cosy centrally heated ship then becomes a wilderness hotel to which we can take you on dog sledding adventures, or for our first journey out to her in February, by snowmobile.
The dog sledding adventures take you across frozen lands and across sea ice, past mountains and glaciers, and teach you how to mush a team of huskies. You can do this from 1st March to mid May, for which the earlier periods are the best for Northern Lights opportunities.
Click here for details about our Ship Locked in the Ice Dog Sledding Expeditions.
Click here for details about our Ship Locked in Ice Snowmobile Expedition.
Click Here for details about our Northern Lights & Natural Wonders of Iceland trip
Our summer ice ship voyages to Spitsbergen come to an end in August when we follow the southern extent of the Arctic sea ice to the world's largest national park: The Northeast Greenland National Park. This is itself a wonderful voyage, full of variety, but the chances of seeing the Northern Lights increase a lot on our East Greenland only voyage which in 2011 will be from 7th - 15th September.
Whilst the Aurora borealis is a possibility at this time of the year, later sailing voyages are better; but what our East Greenland experiences do provide is some of the most dramatic mountain and glacier scenery in the Arctic, along with icebergs the size of which you would normally only find in Antarctica.
Photographs kindly provided by Jan Belgers, Jan de Groot, Stuart Ward & Chris Dobbs
Ice Hotel Sweden Norway Spitsbergen Longyearbyen - Responsible Travel - Expedition Cruises - Alaskan huskies - Canada - Alaska - Russia - Kamchatka - Aurora Australis