7 reasons to visit Svalbard during springtime
When spring arrives in Svalbard, the frozen archipelago comes alive, swapping darkness for a never-ending stream of daylight that envelops the archipelago. This time of rebirth is characterised by an endless, fairytale winter landscape of beautiful pastel colours and a wondrous purity. The fjord ice is thick and many animals still wear their winter coats. Walruses can often be seen resting on the ice floes, and if you're lucky you might spot the king of the Arctic, the polar bear, walking across the frozen sea. For many, this time of year symbolises the essence of Svalbard, and few visitors are left untouched by this dreamy winter world. Below we have listed what we think are the best reasons to visit Svalbard during springtime.
The magical winter landscape
Springtime in Svalbard offers a true polar experience with snow-covered landscapes, beautiful pastel colours and magnificent glaciers. In fact, the Arctic in its winter colours is so beautiful that you have to pinch yourself. The sun makes the snow crystals around you sparkle like little diamonds, and wherever you look you'll see boundless views, a dark blue polar sea and a sky that never seems to end.
The eternal light
The month of May often brings high pressure, which means clear blue skies and the best chance of seeing the midnight sun in all its glory, not hidden behind cloud cover. It is a dreamy feeling to lean against the railing in the bow in the middle of the night and enjoy the magnificent infinity of nature in full daylight.
Exciting Zodiac cruises
With our Zodiacs (rubber boats) we explore the magical winter landscapes of some of Svalbard's most beautiful fjords, making landings whenever possible. Cruising along ice-blue glaciers and between mighty icebergs is a feeling that is hard to beat.
Lingering fjord ice means a good chance of seeing seals and walruses resting on ice floes. The Arctic foxes and the Svalbard reindeers still wear their winter coats and if you're lucky, you might even spot the king of the Arctic, the polar bear, walking across the ice.
Experience Svalbard on snowshoes
Each day we explore the magical wilderness of Svalbard, and the snow-covered landscape in May can give us the opportunity to hike with lightweight, modern snowshoes. This is a fantastic experience, made easier when the snow is deep. It hisses as you step up the slopes and thumps softly as you tread downhill in loose snow.
Greater chance of reaching the pack ice
Exploring the pack ice is a truly extraordinary experience. In May, the ice edge is lower, increasing the chances of reaching this frozen, dynamic world of ice. Cruising through the broken ice in an rubber boat and spotting the iconic Arctic wildlife is a real adventure.
A sense of exclusivity
Spring in Svalbard offers a unique sense of exclusivity, as few ships have arrived so early in the season. In addition, travelling on a smaller ship means you can reach most places and have a more flexible itinerary. The palpable silence and sense of being "alone in the wilderness" is powerful.
M/S Quest 50 passengers9 days 7 nights on ship USD 6 090LanguagesDepartures: May 2025
- USD 400 Discount
M/S Stockholm 12 passengers9 days 7 nights on ship USD 9 590LanguagesDepartures: May / June 2025
- USD 400 Discount
M/S Sjøveien 12 passengers9 days 7 nights on ship USD 9 090LanguagesDepartures: May / June 2025
- USD 400 Discount
Since 1999, we have taken travellers on once-in-a-lifetime trips to Svalbard. From May to September our three small expedition ships, carrying only 12 and 50 passengers, explore this magnificent Arctic archipelago. Unpredictability and flexibility are the main keywords when you travel with PolarQuest as the exact route depends on weather, ice conditions and wildlife encounters. Sometimes you might be woken up in the middle of the night if a polar bear has been spotted on the ice.