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Springtime in Svalbard with Doug Allan 2025

Join PolarQuest and award-winning photographer and cameraman Doug Allan for an unforgettable expedition cruise through the magnificent wilderness of Svalbard!

It's spring in Svalbard, and it's an awe-inspiring experience to be there when the archipelago comes to life: the Arctic fox and the Svalbard reindeer still wear their winter coats, walruses are often seen resting on the ice floes, and if we're lucky, we might see the polar bear hunting for seals. Birdlife is beginning to return to Svalbard, and it's a good time to see king eiders and rock ptarmigans. The fairytale winter landscape is dominated by glittering ice formations, snow-capped mountains, fjord ice, and pastel-coloured skies.

On board M/S Quest, Doug Allan will speak with passion and authority about his experiences behind the camera in the most remote and spectacular places on earth.

  • Cameraman Doug Allan as Special Lecturer
  • Experience the Arctic spring
  • Stunning winter landscapes
  • Iconic wildlife
  • Magical midnight sun
  • True expedition cruising
  • 5 experienced polar guides
  • Small group - great moments
Accommodation: Cabin on board M/S Quest, hotel. Transport: Expedition ship, Zodiac. Ship: M/S Quest. Passengers: 50 passengers. Languages: English & Swedish. Length: 9 days, 7 nights on ship. Price: From USD 6 090. Departure: 12 May 2025


With our sturdy Zodiacs we explore this winter wonderland, heading for some of Svalbard’s most magnificent fjords. We also try to go ashore whenever the ice and snow allow.

Day 1: Longyearbyen, Svalbard

We arrive in Longyearbyen and transfer to our hotel.

Day 2 - 8: Expedition cruising

We start our Svalbard adventure by exploring Longyearbyen. In the afternoon we embark our expedition ship M/S Quest and head out through Isfjorden - our Arctic adventure has started! We are now in a part of the world where we are completely dependent on the ice and weather conditions. Our exact itinerary will depend on these factors and on the wildlife we encounter. We may make a first excursion before heading south or north, depending on the weather and ice conditions. Here are some examples of places we may visit:


At the entrance of Isfjorden is the characteristic cliff of Alkhornet. We go ashore to enjoy the beautiful tundra and its birdlife, including barnacle geese, Brünnich’s guillemots, glaucous gulls, snow buntings and tens of thousands of kittiwakes. Arctic foxes are sometimes seen in the rock crevices around the mountain and with a bit of luck we might see these lovely little animals scurrying around, frantically looking for food.

Kongsfjorden and Krossfjorden

The scientific village of Ny-Ålesund is located in Kongsfjorden. It was from here that Amundsen and Nobile started their heroic expeditions to the North Pole. In the nearby Krossfjorden we can admire the beautifully sculpted front of the 14th of July Glacier and listen to the sounds of the many kittiwakes and Brünnich’s guillemots that nest on the nearby cliffs.


Raudfjorden is an area of immense natural beauty – dominated by magnificent glaciers. It is also a favourite haunt of seals, and the bird cliffs are bursting with activity.

Virgohamna, Danskøya

Danskøya was the starting point for two of the most daring attempts to reach the North Pole. The Swedish explorer Andrée made an attempt with a hydrogen balloon and American journalist Wellman started with an airship. Interesting remnants of these Arctic expeditions can still be seen here.


At the beautiful Vårsolbukta in Bellsund little auks nest by the tens of thousands. We go ashore and walk across the tundra to get a closer look at these charming birds.



The majestic Hornsund consists of several magnificent fjords along the west coast of Spitsbergen, where huge glaciers calve out shimmering blue ice. This is one of the favourite haunts of some of Svalbard's polar bears, and we may be lucky enough to spot one on the fjord ice.

Day 9: Longyearbyen

In the morning we leave the ship in Longyearbyen and begin our journey home.

Please note: All itineraries are for guidance only. Our exact route will depend on the ice, weather conditions, wildlife and government regulations. The places mentioned are just examples of some of the many sites Svalbard has to offer. We always strive to maximise your experience. Please remember that flexibility is the key to a successful expedition!


For the active there is a chance to explore the areas we visit with snowshoes. This is an extra option that requires a good level of fitness. Please note: this activity is always dependent on weather, wind and other safety precautions.

We offer group flights from Oslo to Longyearbyen and return (limited availability). Contact us for more information!

Join Doug Allan on a special Svalbard adventure!

We are proud to present Doug Allan, award-winning polar photographer and cameraman, as special lecturer on this voyage. On board our comfortable expedition ship M/S Quest, he will speak with passion and authority about his experiences behind the camera in the most remote and spectacular places on earth.

Doug Allan is one of the world’s best known and respected cameramen, whose love affair with ice has lasted over forty years. He spent four winters as a research diver, scientist, base commander and photographer for the British Antarctic Survey, before changing direction to full time filming in 1984. He specialises in natural history, expeditions and science documentaries in the wildest and most remote places on our planet, particularly the polar zones. Over his career, he's filmed for series like Blue Planet, Planet Earth, Frozen Planet, Ocean Giants and Operation Iceberg. With more than 65 film projects on his CV, including 20 expeditions to Svalbard, Doug Allan’s expertise at filming in polar regions and other extreme environments is legendary.

His photographic awards include eight Emmy’s and five BAFTA’s. He has twice won the underwater category in the Wildlife Photographer of the year and has three Honorary Doctorates in recognition of his camerawork, as well as two Polar Medals.

"Wildlife cameramen don’t come much more special than Doug." – Sir David Attenborough


The ship M/S Quest

  • Johnny Van Vliet
  • Svalbard in May
    Mattias Henningsson
  • Johnny Van Vliet
  • Olle Carlsson
  • Dining room
    Jonas Sundquist
  • Jett Britnell
  • Owner's Cabin
    Eirik Grønningsæter
  • Double Cabin Superior
    Eirik Grønningsæter
  • Double Cabin Superior
    Eirik Grønningsæter
  • Double Cabin
    Eirik Grønningsæter
  • Double Cabin
    Eirik Grønningsæter
  • Twin Cabin
    Eirik Grønningsæter
  • Triple Cabin
    Eirik Grønningsæter
  • Johnny Van Vliet
  • Johnny Van Vliet
  • Only 50 passengers
  • 5 Zodiacs & 5 guides
  • Beautiful panorama lounge
  • Spacious outer decks, free from crowds
  • Small ship with a relaxed atmosphere
  • Several cabin categories
Johnny van Vliet
Jett Britnell


The ship was built in Denmark in 1992 to serve as a ferry along the west coast of Greenland. In 2004-2005, it was completely refurbished into a comfortable expedition ship, and in 2018, the passenger areas underwent further renovation. M/S Quest can accommodate 50 passengers, with all 24 cabins being outside cabins equipped with private facilities. The triple cabins feature upper and lower berths, while all other cabins have either two lower berths or a double bed. Each cabin includes a desk with a chair and a cupboard for storage. The superior cabins are spacious, featuring armchairs and a TV. The owner’s cabin offers a double bed, two large picture windows, a separate seating area, and a TV.

In the dining room, you enjoy delicious meals between landings, while the panorama lounge offers breathtaking views of the surrounding landscape. This lounge serves as the venue for entertaining talks about the area's flora, fauna, and history. It also features a bar and a small library. The ship boasts spacious observation decks for you to enjoy the stunning vistas. The bridge welcomes you around the clock, and there is always something to see or search for. You are welcomed by an international crew, and the atmosphere on board is relaxed and very friendly. There are five Zodiacs and five guides on M/S Quest.

It is always possible to share a cabin on board M/S Quest. All cabins have windows and private facilities.

Cabins & prices

Cabin category Price per person
Triple cabin upper/lower beds USD 6 090
Twin cabin 2 twin beds USD 7 090
Twin cabin Plus 2 twin beds USD 7 490
Double cabin double bed USD 7 490
Double cabin Superior large double bed* USD 8 590
Owner’s cabin large double bed USD 9 290
Twin cabin for single use USD 11 390

Please note: It is always possible to share a cabin on board M/S Quest. All cabins have windows and private facilities.

*The double bed in the Superior cabins is separable.

Price includes

  • 1 night in a hotel in Longyearbyen
  • 7 nights on board M/S Quest
  • Lunch day 2
  • All meals on board
  • Coffee and tea
  • An experienced Expedition Leader and knowledgeable guides
  • Doug Allan as Special Lecturer
  • Guiding ashore and talks on board
  • All excursions and activities

Not included

  • Flight to/from Longyearbyen
  • Travel and cancellation insurance
  • Gratuity to the ship’s crew
  • Personal expenses such as bar and shop charges

Departures & booking

Please do not hesitate to contact us if you have any questions or wish to make a reservation.

Booking request
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Departure Return
12 May 2025 20 May 2025

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