East Spitsbergen: Home of Polar Bears & Summer Solstice
(17 – 24 June 2024)


Check cabin details here

20 in stock

Pay a 20% deposit per item

20 in stock

SKU: arctic-june-2024 Categories: ,

EAGLE EYE SAFARIS is going on an ARCTIC Expedition Cruise with a Photography Workshop for 8 days! We invite you to join us!

17 – 24 June 2024

Who wants to see a polar bear? Or a walrus harem? Breaching whales, reindeer, arctic foxes, spectacular coastlines where glaciers slash through wildflower covered mountainsides? Join us for a 7-day or 14-day bucket-list expedition to the edge of the inhabitable world, deep inside the Arctic Circle. You’ll get to be part of an exclusive, intensive, small-group Eagle Eye Safaris’ Photography Workshop to become a much better photographer. We’ll be side-by-side on land, coaching you on settings and composition so you can take photos that excel in storytelling. We’ll work together to teach you every function of your camera so you can capture your vision with confidence. We’ll teach our Lightroom Wildlife Workflow editing system, plus some tips in Photoshop, so you can create photos of which you are proud. 24 hours of daylight and the midnight sun provide excellent conditions for photography and on-shore activities.

Our Arctic trips allow you to join for 7 or 14 days. Both trips have excellent opportunities for spotting wildlife roaming free in the far north: Polar Bears, Walrus, Reindeer, Arctic Foxes, Puffins, Arctic birds, and multiple whale species, especially the Bowhead Whale. If you have time to combine the trips, you’ll do so at a deep discount. You’ll be able to experience the full expedition and double your opportunities for the cherry-on-top: the polar bear.

This trip takes us around the east side of Spitsbergen Island, part of the Svalbard archipelago in the Arctic Ocean, only 500 miles from the North Pole. It’s 7-days of incredible scenery, wildlife and experiences you’ll never forget. The scenery is breathtaking and beautiful. We should have plenty of wildlife opportunities, watching as animals take advantage of the short summer to raise their young and prepare for the upcoming winter. There’s no languor here, life is lived fast.

The first trip covers the north side of Spitsbergen, with rugged coastlines, glaciers, blue ice and wildlife everywhere.

We’ve teamed with Oceanwide Expeditions to bring these trips to you. By booking through Eagle Eye Safaris, the cost is the same, but you’ll join our exclusive Photography Workshop as an included bonus. We’d love to have you along as we explore the north end of the earth.

Non-photographers won’t be bored—there’s so much to see and do on this amazing expedition. And don’t worry, you won’t be cold. You’ll be moving around, and it’s summer in the Arctic. We’ll guide you with packing decisions, too.

Go someplace few people have been—inside the Arctic Circle. It’s a big world. Let’s explore it together!


Summer solstice: midnight sun, and 24-hour day

The midnight sun is a phenomenon that occurs during the Arctic summer, when the sun is visible for a full 24 hours in fair weather. The 2024 summer solstice in Longyearbyen falls on 21 June, The term solstice (Latin solstitium) means “sun-stopping” and describes the point on the horizon at which the sun appears to rise and set, stopping and reversing directions after this day. On the solstice, the sun does not rise precisely in the east but rather north of east, then later sets to the north of west, making the sun visible for a longer period of time. It will not be until late August that the sun fully goes down again, and then only for a few minutes.Join us in experiencing this fascinating phenomenon during this voyage through the Arctic wilderness of Svalbard.

Day 1: Largest town, biggest island

You touch down in Longyearbyen, the administrative center of Spitsbergen, the largest island of the Svalbard archipelago. Enjoy strolling around this former mining town, whose parish church and Svalbard Museum make for fascinating attractions.

Though the countryside appears stark, more than a hundred species of plant have been recorded in it. In the early evening the ship sails out of Isfjorden, where you might spot the first minke whale of your voyage.

Day 2: Spectacular Hornsund

We start the day by quietly cruising the side fjords of the spectacular Hornsund area in southern Spitsbergen, enjoying the scenery of towering mountain peaks. The mountain of Hornsundtind rises to 1,431 meters (4,695 feet), while the peak of Bautaen testifies to why early Dutch explorers gave this island the name Spitsbergen, meaning “pointed mountains.”

There are 14 magnificent glaciers in the area, and we have a fair chance of encountering seals and polar bears.

The nearby cliffs of Sofiakammen are also home to thousands of pairs of nesting kittiwakes and little auks, and in the evening, we might see thousands of harp seals rutting on ice floes at Sørkapp.

Day 3: Long excursion at Diskobukta

After navigating the drift ice of Storfjorden, where we sometimes see harp seals, we land in northwest Edgeøya at the northern bank of Rosenberdalriver. Here on the raised beach, we have the opportunity of walking to Rosenbergdalen, which is teeming with grazing reindeer.

Afterward we plan to walk by a cliff with nesting black guillemots on our way to Stretehamna, where we often find a herd of walruses on the beach near an octagonal trapper’s cabin built in 1905.

We can also see the remains of a 19th-century Pomor house as well as the bones of walruses hunted in previous centuries.

Day 4: Trapper´s history in Freemansundet

Sailing into the waterway of Freemansundet, we plan to land at the tundra lowland of Sundneset, on the island of Barentsøya.

Here we will visit the hut of a German scientific expedition (Würzbugerhütte) from sixty years ago, then take a brisk walk across the tundra in search of Spitsbergen reindeer and barnacle geese. After that, we plan to go on a Zodiac cruise near Freeman Glacier and visit a kittiwake colony in a canyon close by.

In case of heavy ice in Freemandundet, however, we will instead sail to Negribreen, one of the most extensive glacier fronts on the east side of Spitsbergen. Here we can take a Zodiac cruise and land on Walrus Island, which became ice-free at the end of last century.

Day 5: Ivory gulls in Agardhfjellet

Today we sail to the east side of west Spitsbergen (west side of Storfjorden).

Here we plan to walk to breeding places for ivory gulls in Agardhfjellet, which stands about 300 meters (980 feet) high.

The valley leading to the outcrops that house the nests is littered with fossils of belemnites and ammonites.

Day 6: South Spitsbergen

Today we aim to land at the mountain of Stellingfjellet, near the largest colony of Brünnich’s guillemots in Spitsbergen. Later in the day, we will make landings at the rarely visited coast of south Spitsbergen, at the bay of Isbukta.

Day 7: Bell Sund’s flora, fauna, and haunting history

We continue our voyage in Bell Sund, one of the largest fjord systems in Svalbard. The ocean currents make this area slightly warmer than other areas in the archipelago, which shows in the relatively lush vegetation.

Here there are excellent opportunities to enjoy both history and wildlife.

A possibility is Ahlstrandhalvøya, at the mouth of Van Keulenfjorden, where piles of beluga skeletons can be found. These remains of 19th-century whale slaughter are a haunting reminder of the consequences of rampant exploitation. Fortunately, belugas were not hunted into extinction, and you have a good chance of coming across a pod.

Alternately, while cruising the side fjords of Bellsund, we can explore tundra where reindeer like to feed as well as rock slopes where little auks are breeding.

Day 8: There and back again

Every adventure, no matter how grand, must eventually come to an end. You disembark in Longyearbyen, taking home memories that will accompany you wherever your next adventure lies.

We can try to pair solo travelers if you’d like a roommate if another traveler of the same gender is also looking for a roommate.  We can’t guarantee it, however. EVERYONE is welcome on this trip! 

Cost in USD (see Terms for details):

Double, Triple & Quadruple Occupancy cabins:  Varies from $4000 per person up to a Quadruple Porthole for $18,000 for a Grand Suite with private balcony (see choices below)

Cabins & Prices

$16,000 USD

$4,000 USD

$15,000 USD

$5,000 USD

$11,200 USD

$9,520 USD

$5,600 USD

$12,100 USD

$10,285 USD

$6,050 USD

$12,800 USD

$10,880 USD

$6,400 USD

$14,600 USD

$12,410 USD

$15,500 USD

$13,175 USD

$18,000 USD

$15,300 USD

Ship Details

m/v Hondius
Hondius is the first-registered Polar Class 6 vessel in the world, meeting the latest and highest Lloyd’s Register standards for ice-strengthened cruise ships. Surpassing the requirements of the Polar Code adopted by the International Maritime Organization (IMO), Hondius represents the most flexible, advanced, innovative touring vessel in the polar regions, thoroughly optimized for exploratory voyages that provide you the utmost first-hand contact with the Arctic and Antarctica.


Pay in Full in January to get a FREE CABIN UPGRADE!


Deposit: 25% within 14 days of being invoiced

50 % Due:  6 June 2023

100 % Due: 4 September 2023

(We will invoice you two weeks prior to due dates)

(For the January Upgrade sale, credit cards are subject to a 3.2% convenience fee. Bank transfers do not incur a fee. For non-holiday sales, there are no extra fees)

Eagle Eye Safaris Photography Workshop Information - What You Need to Bring:
Photography Workshop — What Gear Do I Bring?
• Camera(s) with body caps. Update firmware before leaving home. Download manual before leaving home.
• Lenses with lens caps (front and back):
• Telephoto or zoom in the 300mm – 500mm range
• Wide Angle
• Macro
• Medium Length in the 24mm – 100mm range
If you have to choose between two similar lenses, bring the faster lens (lower aperture, such as f2.8)
• Extra batteries and charger(s)
• Laptop — Preload Adobe Lightroom Classic (NOT CC!!!) and Photoshop. https://www.adobe.com/creativecloud/photography.html has a subscription service. Choose the service with Lightroom and Photoshop. You can cancel at any time.
• 2 External Hard Drives of at least 2TB each (one primary, one backup)—be sure cords will connect to your laptop!
• Memory cards for your camera, 64GB or larger. Plan main cards plus a set of extra cards and one or two spares. We will download to the hard drives every night and reuse memory cards.
• Card reader(s)

Additional Gear:
• Rain covers for cameras and lenses — Buy inexpensive clear covers. They are easier to use than big, pro, brand-name covers. TIP: shower caps make great body covers, and vegetable bags from grocery stores make great covers for long lenses in a pinch.
• Dry Sac (35L or larger, you’ll carry cameras and extra gear inside). One that doubles as a backpack works well, as does one with a sling attachment.
• 2 Towels—quick wicking and drying to keep cameras and gear dry.
• Tripod or monopod with good quality ball head, or a waterproof beanbag. Be sure you have ARCA plates for each big lens foot and for each camera body.
• Thin photography gloves under heavy gloves or mittens, and rubber gloves (fishing gloves, heavy neoprene, etc) for zodiac
• Power strip with USB ports to charge multiple items at once
• Double check that you have power cables for everything and that they fit. Don’t assume!
• Filters such as ND (5 or 6 step, and 10 step) and Polarizing

Voyage Map

Duration:8 days / 7 nights
Ship:m/v Hondius
Language:English speaking voyage
Max Clients on this Trip:

NO LIMIT for those joining only the cruise.

The Photography Workshop is limited to 20 guests so we can ensure one-on-one time with you.  Bring your non-photographer spouse, friend, SO, cousin, and know that they will have an enjoyable time while you work on photography, and yes, you’ll still have lots of quality time with them too.


1 – 9 Photography Workshop Clients:  Karen

10 – 18 Clients:  Ernest and Karen

Photographic Skills Level:

Beginner to pro, including phone cameras, DSLRs, and Mirrorless!

Fitness Level:

Average to fit:  you must be able to manage stairs while a boat moves, get in and out of a zodiac (you will have help—it’s mandatory), and navigate uneven terrain on shore including snow and ice. Some accommodations can be made for those with disabilities or who need extra help.  Please ask us and we can see what we can do for you!

Safety Considerations:

We take every precaution to keep you safe. All staff are certified in their jobs and trained to the highest level. The ship is new and built to the highest standards of safety.  There is inherent risk in going on any cruise, however. Please be sure to assess your risk tolerance.


  • Full Eagle Eye Safaris’ Wildlife Photography Workshop and one-on-one time with Ernest & Karen.
  • Voyage aboard the indicated vessel as indicated in the itinerary.
  • All meals throughout the voyage aboard the ship including snacks, coffee and tea.
  • All shore excursions and activities throughout the voyage by Zodiac.
  • Program of lectures by noted naturalists and leadership by experienced expedition staff.
  • Free use of rubber boots and snowshoes.
  • Transfers and baggage handling between the airport, hotels and ship only for those passengers on the group flights to and from Longyearbyen.
  • All miscellaneous service taxes and port charges throughout the program.
  • AECO fees and governmental taxes.
  • Comprehensive pre-departure material.
  • More fun than you knew people could ever have!


  • Any airfare, whether on scheduled or charter flights
  • Pre- and post- land arrangements.
  • Transfers to / from the vessel outside Spitsbergen.
  • Passport and visa expenses.
  • Government arrival and departure taxes.
  • Meals ashore.
  • Baggage, cancellation and personal insurance (which is strongly recommended).
  • Excess baggage charges and all items of a personal nature such as laundry, bar, beverage charges and telecommunication charges.
  • The customary gratuity at the end of the voyages for stewards and other service personnel aboard (guidelines will be provided).
Wildlife & Photography Highlights:
You’ll be clicking every time you turn around!  We’re searching for:

               Land only:
                              Svalbard Reindeer
                              Arctic Fox
                              Sibling Vole
               Land, Sea, and Ice:
                              Polar Bear – the largest predator on land
                              Seals – Ringed, Bearded (largest seal in Svalbard), Harbour
               Sea only:
                              Whales – White/Beluga, Narwhal, Blue, Fin, Humpback, Minke, Sperm
                              Dolphins – Orca, Northern Bottlenose, Pilot, White-Beaked

               Atlantic Puffin
               Little Auk
               Arctic Tern
               Red-throated Diver
               Northern Fulmar
               Pink-footed Goose
               Barnacle Goose
               Brent Goose
               Common Eider
               Svalbard Rock Ptarmigan
               Purple Sandpiper
               Grey Phalarope
               Ringed Plover
               Ruddy Turnstone
               Arctic Skua
               Great Skua
               Glaucous gull
               Balck-legged Kittiwake
               Ivory Gull
               Common and Brunnich’s Guillemot
               Snow Bunting (the only songbird in Svalbard)

               Icebergs, glaciers, mountains, seascapes and more

Detailed Photography/Lightroom Course:

We’ll spend two days teaching you how to use your camera, from focusing to metering, from Manual Mode to Aperture Priority, and every function in between. We’ll teach you about exposure compensation, which you’ll need against the bright snow.  We’ll practice on the many birds that will be following us, the ever-changing waves, and interesting things on the ship.

Once we are comfortable with our cameras and have a few decent photos, we will begin to teach our basic Wildlife Workflow and editing skills in Lightroom. You must bring a laptop loaded with Lightroom Classic and Photoshop CC for this workshop (Do NOT download Lightroom CC!) Please check the Adobe website for their monthly subscription package. The Lightroom and Photoshop course is limited by the length of the cruise.

In Lightroom we will look at the following, but not limited to:

      • An introduction to Lightroom: how to improve your photo management and processing.
      • Setting up Lightroom to keep things simple yet effective: files and folders.
      • The basic concept of Lightroom. The catalog vs your photo files; important settings in Lightroom.
      • Importing photos and backup strategies.
      • Renaming multiple photos and creating standard templates for renaming photos.
      • Finding and filtering: keywords, text, attributes, and metadata.
      • Setting up presets.
      • The Library module overview
      • Basic wildlife workflow editing in the Develop module.
      • Introduction to Map, Book, Slideshow, Print and Web modules.
      • Collections: smart collections and hierarchies.
      • Sizing and Exporting photos for social media or print.
      • Editing in Photoshop through Lightroom.

In Photoshop we will look at the following, but not limited to:

      • Important settings in Photoshop
      • Selective Sharpening and Noise Reduction
      • Multiple methods of Sharpening
      • Basic color and lighting adjustments.
      • Using the Tool Pallet for editing wildlife photographs.
      • Color spaces, and 8-bit vs 16-bit processing.
      • Cloning and using Content Aware.
      • Image Sizing, DPI and how to use these tools to determine print size and quality of your photos.
      • Creating Actions and Batch Processing
      • Using Lens Correction
      • Photo Merging
      • Explaining Layers and how they can be used in Photoshop

Please email questions to info@EagleEyeSafaris.com

Please see Eagle Eye Safaris’ Terms and Conditions for more information.