Spitsbergen And Svalbard Archipelago
How To Watch 360° Videos Using Any Device
Due to the fact that this area is reasonably remote with few inhabitants, the wilderness areas are still remarkably untouched and preserved, which provides a wonderful opportunity to see the native fauna and flora in their natural habitat.
The map below shows the location of Spitsbergen immersive 360° videos and webcams . Click the icons on the map to watch or scroll down the page to see them all listed.
This 360° footage of a cruise undertaken by Quark Expeditions in the Svalbard Archipelago gives an idea of some of the things you can expect on such an expedition.
Take an immersive look at some of the animals and birds you can find here in their natural surroundings.
Explanation of the vegetation and climate you can expect to find in this area.
View the map to find the exact location of the webcams by finding the icons.
Click on the picture of the Longyearbyen Port webcam here to see a compilation of all 12 webcams currently operating in Spitsbergen. None of them are live, but they are updated at regular intervals. Take note that some of them may be dark due to the polar night, which occurs between November and January, when the sun is continually at least 6 degrees below the horizon.
Spitsbergen National Parks
Spitsbergen is an island located in northern Norway that is 37,673 km² (14,546 mi²) in size and the national parks in the Svalbard archipelago are found within its borders.
By Air: The best way of reaching this area is by flying to Oslo in Norway and then to catch a connecting flight to the town of Longyearbyen (3 hours) in Spitsebergen. This airport is the most northerly one in the world to receive regularly scheduled flights.
By Ship: Another way to get there is by cruise ship as part of an expedition such as those run by Quark Expeditions, from Norway, Iceland or Scotland. There aren't any regular boat or ferry services to the island.
Wildlife To See
So what animals and birds might you see when visiting this unique wilderness area? Polar bear, arctic fox, walrus, bearded seal, Svalbard reindeer, humpback whale, beluga whale, narwhal, ringed seal, harbour seal, bowhead whale, fin whale, white and blue whale.
Bird species include little auk, puffin, Svalbard rock ptarmigan, guillemot, red-throated diver, barnacle goose, pink footed goose, brent goose, snow bunting, common eider, purple sandpiper, arctic skua, glaucous gull, arctic tern and northern fulmar.
What To Do Here
Adventure activities abound here as well as some cultural events and attractions.
You can go on a snowmobile trip, take a boat cruise, search for the Northen Lights, dogsledding, visit ice caves, ski and go on a wildlife and bird safari. In Longyearbyen visit the North Pole Expedition Museum, Svalbard Museum & Brewery, Svalbard Church, Wildphoto Gallery and Coal Mine.
Where To Stay
The town of Longyearbyen contains most of the accommodation for the Spitsbergen area. There are hotels, lodges, guesthouses and even camping available for lodging.
The Svalbard Hotell Polfareren is based in the centre of the town and Basecamp Hotel is another option. There is also a Radisson Blu Polar Hotel and Funken Lodge is simple yet modern. Affordable accommodation options include Coal Miners’ Cabins, Russki Dom Guesthouse and Longyearbyen Camping.
Climate & Weather
Take note that this is an area of the world that is very much affected by climate change so conditions are changing rapidly. But due to the fact that Spitsbergen is situated so far north it's climate is cold for most of the year. The warmest month measured at Longyearbyen is July with the average maximum temperatures reaching 7°C (44.6°F).
February is the coldest month with average minimum temperatures going down to -21°C (-5.8°F). Cold snaps occur where temperatures can drop to -46°C (-51.3°F). Precipitation is low at less than 200mm (7.87") per year.
Seven National Parks In Spitsbergen
The island contains seven designated national parks, and there are six more nature reserves in the Svalbard archipelago itself.
The national parks are - Forlandet, Indre Wijdefjorden, Nordenskiöld Land, Nordre Isfjorden, Nordvest-Spitsbergen, Sassen-Bünsow Land and Sør-Spitsbergen.